January Transfer Window Closes As Torres, Cassano, Dzeko, Suarez and more ginger the market

The January 2011 transfer window has closed, bringing an end to no small measure of transfer activity across Europe and the world.

In a break with recent years, a vast amount of high-level action took place on deadline day. That’s normally how it works in summer, but the winter window of 2011 was unusually busy.

What set this year apart was the number of big-name moves. More promiment players often tend not to move mid-season, instead doing so in the July and August window. But this January, eight-figure transfers were by no means a rarity.

Biggest Net Spenders

1. Chelsea (-€83.5m)
2. Manchester City (-€33m)
3. Inter (€-31m)
4. Aston Villa (-€23m)
5. Bayern Munich (-€14m)
sources: goal,com, transfermarkt.de

As expected, many of these big moves took place in England. Manchester City landed €30m+ man Edin Dzeko from Wolfsburg and Aston Villa set the all-English ball rolling with the €22.5m acquisiton of Darren Bent, and that was just the start.

Liverpool quickly got in on the act by signing Luis Suarez from Ajax in a deal worth over €26m, and then paid a stunning €41m initial fee for Newcastle United hero Andy Carroll.

That all laid the groundwork for one of the latest and most dramatic deals of the window, namely Fernando Torres’ move from Anfield to Chelsea. The Blues have allegedly paid in excess of €58m for the Spanish World Cup winner. As if that wasn’t enough, minutes before the deadline David Luiz completed his move from Benfica to Stamford Bridge in a €25m switch.

The same was true in Italy, where the bulk of the biggest deals involved those players operating up front. Giampaolo Pazzini cost Inter a pretty penny but at least started to repay their faith with a stunning debut following his arrival from Sampdoria, while Juventus landed Luca Toni, missing out on several other forward targets in the process.

Most Expensive Players

1. Fernando Torres (€58.5m)
2. Andy Carroll (€41m)
3. Edin Dzeko (€37m)
4. Luis Suarez (€26.5m)
5. David Luiz (€25m)
5. Darren Bent (€21.5m)
sources: goal.com, transfermarkt.de

Back in Milan, former Genoa man also arrived at Inter while the champions landed Japanese ace Yuto Nagatomo from Cesena. Jonathan Biabiany left San Siro for Sampdoria.

League leaders AC Milan were no less busy, landing Antonio Cassano early in the window on a cut-price deal from Sampdoria, as well as Ajax’s Urby Emanuelson and Juve’s Nicola Legrottaglie. Ronaldinho left the Rossoneri in favour of Flamengo in Brazil.

Roma had an extremely quiet window, with no first team arrivals, and Cicinho and Julio Baptista leaving for Villarreal and Malaga respectively. Most of the big deals elsewhere were loans, e.g. Amauri from Juve to Parma, Antonio Floro Flores to Genoa from Udinese, and Davide Santon from Inter to Cesena.

Spain had a relatively quiet window. Real Madrid landed Emmanuel Adebayor on loan from top-heavy Manchester City, while Barcelona shelled out just €3m for Ibrahim Afellay, PSV Eindhoven’s left-sided star.

Elsewhere Sevilla made two ambitious acquisitions in the form of Ivan Rakitic and Gary Medel, each costing around €2.5m from Schalke and Universidad Catolica, respectively, this all being paid for by Abdoulay Konko‘s €6m return to Genoa.

Atletico Madrid sold Simao to Besiktas for less than a million euros, partially funding the signing of Elias from Corinthians for €7m and €4m-man Juanfran of Osasuna.

Finally, Espanyol lived up to their billing as a selling club by selling defensive stars Victor Ruiz for €6m to Napoli, and Didac Villa to AC Milan for €4m.

Biggest Net Sellers

1. Benfica (€26.7m)
2. Wolfsburg (€17.6m)
3. Sunderland (€16m)
4. Sampdoria (€12.9m)
5. Internacional (€10.3m)
sources: goal.com, transfermarkt.de

Meanwhile in Germany it was Bayern Munich who led the spending spree, albeit with just one player: Hoffenheim ace Luiz Gustavo arrived in Bavaria for €17m, while out-of-favour defender Martin Demichelis was punted to Malaga for €3m.

Wolfsburg also parted with plenty of money, albeit while still making a considerable profit from the sale of Dzeko to City. No fewer than six signings came through the doors at the Volkswagen-Arena: Dieumerci Mbokani, Tuncay Sanli, Yohandry Orozco, Ja-Choeul Koo, Jan Polak and €8m-rated Patrick Helmes are all now Wolfsburg players.

Hoffenheim, meanwhile, might have landed the bargain of the German window in the form of €7m winger Ryan Babel, while they also signed Roberto Firmino from talent factory Tombense for a considerable €4m fee.

Elsewhere it’s been a summer of sales in France: Jean Il Makoun‘s left Lyon for Aston Villa, Hatem ben Arfa’s move from Marseille to Newcastle has been made permanent, and Stephane Sessegnon is off from PSG to Sunderland. Elsewhere, OM sign Rod Fanni from Lens, Monaco bring Mahamadou Diarra from Real Madrid back to Ligue 1, and Fernando Cavenaghi’s loan from Bordeaux to Mallorca is at an end.

Scotland sees minimal activity, Celtic bringing in Freddy Ljungberg and Kris Commons, while Rangers have landed David Healy on loan and sold Kenny Miller to Turkish club Bursaspor.

Meanwhile Russia’s had a relatively modest window, albeit with plenty of time left until their league resumes. Obafemi Martins and Rafal Murawski have left Rubin Kazan for Birmingham and Lech Poznan respectively, with Walter Chala coming in from Cuenca. In Moscow, Andrey Ivanov has made a quick move from Spartak to Lokomotiv, and Anzhi have made the highest-profile signing by landing Joao Carlos from Genk.

The Leftovers

Charlie Adam was rumoured to be en route from Blackpool to Manchester United, Liverpool, and then Tottenham Hotspur in a moves that apparently never came to close to materialising, while Royston Drenthe‘s switch to Juventus was apparently stymied by his current loan club, Hercules.

Jefferson Farfan
, meanwhile, didn’t manage his move away from Schalke, with Wolfsburg apparently deciding on Helmes instead. Nico Kranjcar remains at Tottenham Hotspur despite being out of favour, while both of Atletico Madrid’s key forwards, Diego Forlan and Sergio ‘Kun’ Aguero, won’t be heading to Spurs.

Tim Matavz and Bas Dost are cooling their heels at Groningen and Heerenveen, respectively, after moves to Napoli and Ajax failed to materialise, and despite interest from Villarreal and Gremio, Lucas is still a Liverpool player.

These and many other players will no doubt be in the headlines come summer…

This article has 1 Comment

  1. It’s a shock that El Nino has moved to Chelsea. It was a transfer that happened because he had become unhappy at Anfield. Though I’m a Barcelona fan, I wish him success because I simply love him

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