January transfer window guide – Will he stay or will he go?

It’s a thankless job being the January transfer window. It’s frequently criticised by managers with prices pumped up by clubs looking to capitalise and make a good return, meaning only the clubs with the heftiest bank balances can afford to buy. The flip side of the coin of course is that it protects smaller clubs by allowing them to hang onto their key players for those all important four month periods in-between windows.

The transfer window was brought into effect in the UK during the 2002/03 season. This decision was made as part of an agreement with the European Commission and was an attempt to ensure contractual stability for both player and club, encourage teams to develop youth and invest in academies, and allow them to plan their squads for the season more effectively.

Sven - Not a fan of the window
Sven – Not a fan of the window 

Generally though, despite doing a good job of what it was formulated to do, it’s disliked. Sven-Goran Eriksson once remarked: “I am sure much of the business being done on the last day is a little bit desperate and that is not right. I think it was better before, but then I am old.”

The total transfer fees involving English clubs

January 2016 Window – £59m

January 2015 Window – £180.6m

January 2014 Window – £127.1m

January 2013 Window – £114.8m

January 2012 Window – £90.6m

January 2011 Window – £228.4m

Accurate as of January 14th 2016, www.transferleague.co.uk

This month has seen precious few in the way of big transfers, indeed the biggest to date at the time of writing is the agreed transfer of Jonjo Shelvey to Newcastle for a fee of £12m, whilst Benik Afobe joined Bournemouth in a reported £9m deal. Leicester’s signing of talented youngster Demarai Gray for £3.7m is surely the best bit of business.

AlanAlgerBetway
Alan Alger, Betway

Asked to comment on betting patterns for this January’s window Betway’s Alan Alger said this: “This January doesn’t appear to have the same blockbuster potential transfers that we’ve seen in years’ past, which has limited the betting appeal somewhat. Although Chelsea changed their manager well before the window opened, we never expected to see a slew of spending at Stamford Bridge as the squad is still very strong.”

He added: “Of far more interest to punters at the moment is the managerial merry-go-round. Manchester United’s season has limped from uninspiring to boring and manager Louis Van Gaal is the 4/11 favourite to be the next manager to be sacked. If he does go in the next week, a replacement manager may be given funds to spend in the final furious days of January, but I wouldn’t be holding my breath for Lionel Messi to arrive.”

Here we analyse the ‘likeliest’ transfers for the remainder of January, as clubs look to banish the blues by splashing a bit of cash to add some new sparkle for the rest of the campaign.

Alex_Teixeira_Santos2015
Alex Teixiera

Alex Teixeira to Chelsea – 13/8 with Sky Bet 

Chelsea have been tracking the Shakhtar striker for some time, and have reportedly placed a bid and are in contract talks. Nothing has been agreed as yet, and there’s been a spanner in the works with Shakhtar manager Mircea Lucescu has stated forthrightly that Teixeira will not be leaving in January.

It’s not often that Chelsea fail to get their man however, and with Chelsea’s striking problems this season they need him rather urgently. 

SBC Verdict: He goes. 

Saido Berahino
Saido Berahino

Saido Berahino to Spurs 7/2 with Sky Bet

Mostly frozen out at West Brom, and so close to a move to White Hart Lane last summer, Berahino has said he wants to move and Tottenham had looked set to be his exit strategy but the latest reports claim their interest has cooled. Newcastle are sniffing around, with two weeks left he’ll find a new home. He’s made it clear he wants that to be Spurs.

SBC Verdict: He goes.

 

John Stones to Chelsea – 9/1 with Sky Bet 

John Stones
John Stones

Chelsea have not shied away from the fact that they want John Stones, though Everton held firm and rejected three bids in the summer.

It’s been reported by Metro that Man Utd are now after him too, though with the defender a key part of the Everton lineup, expect them to hold onto the summer at least.

SBC Verdict: He stays.

 

Mario Gotze to Liverpool – 10/1 with Sky Bet 

Mario Gotze
Mario Gotze

Jurgen Klopp is a big fan of Mario Gotze, and the feeling is apparently mutual. You need only google their surnames to see the pair in various states of embrace.

Klopp needs a big name signing, and he needs to breathe some life into his injury hit side. Gotze though has noted that he’s heard nothing, and despite inviting an approach from his former Dortmund boss, has ruled out a move this winter.

Metro reported on Tuesday that the midfielder has reportedly been given a bodyguard following his pro-Klopp comments.

SBC Verdict: He stays.

 

Nicklas_Bendtner_2010-11-07
Nicklas Bendtner

Nicklas Bendtner to Newcastle – 11/4 with Sky Bet 

The Premier League has missed Nicklas Bendtner. Luckily it seems it may not have to wait too long for the great Dane’s return. The striker recently posted a selfie in an assumedly shameless tribute to David Ginola to show that he was ‘only getting stronger’. Steve McClaren must have a secret Instagram account as Bendtner has apparently caught the eye of Newcastle United.

This rumour may have some legs too after Wolfsburg manager Dieter Hecking said this to the press on Monday: “We have provided training plans to be carried out at 100% during the holidays. Nicklas did apparently too little.”

SBC Verdict: He goes.

Andros Townsend
Andros Townsend

Andros Townsend to Newcastle – 6/4 with Sky Bet 

Fresh off the back of an impressive performance for Spurs U21’s Townsend showed once again he’s better than bench warming with a brace in their 5-4 loss. Newcastle are one of a number of sides interested, though doubtless Townsend has said himself he’d prefer a move to the Magpies over West Brom, and it’s safe to assume he’d rather than be at St.James’ than Villa Park too.

It has been claimed Spurs want in the region of £14m for the winger, meaning a loan deal could be on the cards.

SBC Verdict: He goes. 

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