The door was slammed shut on one of the most intriguing transfer windows in years at 11pm last night. The total amount spent by British clubs finished at £630m, blitzing the previous record of £500m set in 2008. Clubs up and down the UK were moving back and forth spending a fortune on taxis and chauffeurs and attempting to woo players from all over the globe.
Everton and Liverpool were the most productive Premier League clubs, and experienced deadline day master Harry Redknapp did some shrewd business bringing in Benoit Assou- Ekotto and Nico Krancjar which in my opinion are stunning pieces of business and will surely lead QPR back into the Premier League. Had these signings been made last year they may well have stayed up.
Manchester United provided the customary entertainment and had thousands glued to their TV screens waiting for them to make their major signing, which after an episode of Men In Black and a serious cock up in Madrid they managed to bring in Belgian Giant Marouane Fellaini for the giant sum of £27.5m
All in all it was an excellent day for the football fans and summed up the excitement of the English Premier League. Now the dust has settled around the grounds and the journalists have gone home which signings represent the best value and business acumen?
Here are my top 3…..
3) Gareth Barry – Manchester City to Everton (Loan)
Manchester City midfielder Barry moved to Everton in one of the last deals of the day on a season long loan. Reports are also suggesting that City are also subsidising 60% of his £120k per week wages which represents great business by Martinez. The experienced midfielder has found his opportunities limited at City since the arrival of Pellegrini and an array of new talent. Barry is highly regarded at City and the fans have all spoke of their delight that he has been able to secure first team football. Barry’s main aim must surely be to stay in contention of an England place and make it to the world cup in Brazil next year. All in all a fantastic signing by the toffees and which will add some stability to the midfield with Fellaini leaving for United.
2) Peter Odemwingie – West Brom to Cardiff City
This choice may ruffle a few feathers and bring back memories of a ridiculous attempt by Odemwingie to engineer a move to QPR in the last transfer window. That episode ensured that he would never play for the Baggies again and would give him a reputation similar to that of a mercenary.
His inability to engineer that move, rather than backfire has seen him land somewhat elegantly on his feet. Premier League newcomers Cardiff snapped up the Nigerian on a £2m deal that will see him remain in the Premier league and will guarantee first team football. It is easy to forget given his loyalty issues that he is a actually a very good striker while despite his age has the engine and desire of a 21 year old. He managed a not too shabby 30 gaols in 87 games.
He will provide Cardiff with some much needed pace up front and a proven goalscoring record. Nice work Malky!
1) Mesut Ozil – Real Madrid to Arsenal
Nothing much you can say to this other than WOW!!! What signing by Arsene who stuck to his word and brought in some world class talent. This has to go down as the biggest deadline day signing since Robinho left Real Madrid for Manchester City in 2008. At £42m the deal may seem pricey but given his age, experience and his ability this may turn out to be a bargain.
Ozil chipped in with in with 10 goals and 29 assists in 52 appearances for Real Madrid last season earning acclaim from all over Europe with his elegant attacking style. He will fit perfectly into an Arsenal team built around attacking intent and will surely help end the Arsenal silverware drought.
All in all a stunning piece of business especially as they had to beat off a better offer from French champions PSG. I expect big things and can’t wait to see him in action. I’m just glad his first game wont be against my team!
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