Wednesday marked a month since the closure of the January transfer window. Many fans and managers alike have been critical of the mid-season window for a number of years now although after a series of high profile moves during the last January market, perhaps people are starting to change their minds. Granted, the winter window has never lived up to the excitement of a potential summer overhaul or a club video announcing your teams new multimillion pound striker in the build up to a new season. However, the £419.5m spent in January has really put a spin on things.
January was simply stuffed full of transfer sagas. From Manchester City’s unsuccessful pursuit of Riyad Marhez to Brighton’s record breaking signing of Dutch forward Jürgen Locadia, the latest high spending market has really shown its worth. You only have to look at Newcastle United’s deadline day signing of before unheard of goalkeeper Martin Dúbravka as evidence. The 29 year old goalkeeper has already shown exactly why the Geordies took a risk on the Slovakian after a man of the match debut performance in the crucial 1-0 home win against Manchester United. Not only the so called ‘big boys’ are reaping the rewards of taking a gamble in January though. In the Championship, Nottingham Forest boss Aitor Karanka reunited himself with ex-Middlesbrough playmaker Lee Tomlin. The 29 year old had fallen down the pecking order at high flyers Cardiff City before joining the City ground outfit on loan until the end of the season. Nevertheless, Forest fans are now crying out for Tomlin to be signed permanently after 3 goals in 2 games helping Karanka’s new side to four much needed points.
The importance of the mid season window will now also grow even stronger after the news that both the Premier League and EFL voted in favour of the summer markets early closure. This now means January will be the only time for clubs to strengthen their squads once the fixtures have begun.
Let’s not forget though, the January transfer window has previously been under some scrutiny. Managers and pundits have argued for countless years now that ‘genuine quality’ can’t be found at the beginning of the new year but surely Alexis Sánchez, Philippe Coutinho and Virgil van Dijk would disagree? Not only this, pundits themselves have criticised the fact ‘bigger clubs’ are able to rightly or wrongly rectify their already star filled benches with more and more talent because of the window. Nevertheless, where would a free January leave the clubs threatened with relegation? Well simply, unable to bolster their prospects of staying in the most financially rewarding league in the world. Now surely that would be undeserved.
Ultimately, despite its flaws the winter market will continue to show how important it really is to the beautiful game and exactly why it is needed. So with the crunch months of the season set to begin be prepared for both the heroes and villains from the January transfer window.
What do you think AllOutFootball fans? Be sure to leave your thoughts on the market in the comments below!