Football’s twice yearly orgy of excitement climaxed on Wednesday night as the transfer window slammed shut for three months. FIFA’s eloborate reenactment of a Job Centre minus the stench of urine means that the title race can change on the BACS transfer of millions of pounds. There was panic-buying, buying for the future and of course a terrific shot of Harry Redknapp from his car window. Every side purchased at least one player and we have graded each side as to how well they got on.
Arsenal – C – It’s true that they added quality in Mikel Arteta and shored up the backline with Per Mertescaker. This overlooks the fact that their best two players have left. They’ll still struggle to get fourth.
Aston Villa – C – Another side that relinquished their best two players. Charles N’Zogbia is a wise buy and Tottenham cast-offs Jermaine Jenas and Alan Hutton will do a job.
Blackburn – B – It’s hard to tell with this lot. They were a pile of tripe in the first place and still look almost certain to go down. Playing three centre halves is a real possibility after the addition of Scott Dann. It’s hard to see where the goals will come from.
Bolton – A – They managed to keep hold of Gary Cahill.
Chelsea – B – Had to settle for Raul Meireles as Spurs stood firm on Luka Modric. Juan Mata could shine and much is expected of Romelu Lukaku.
Everton – F – That’s a big “F” for FAIL. No permanent signings. CHECK. Lose last season’s joint top scorer. CHECK. Sale of inspirational Spanish midfielder. CHECK. Sign extravagantly named Argentinean striker who is doomed to fail. CHECK.
Fulham – A – The signing of former Dutch top scorer Bryan Ruiz is a steal and this was a side that needed to add something on deadline day.
Liverpool – B – If the Reds were a phone, they’d be the iPhone. Easy on the eye and a joy to behold. Then you notice the price tag and realize you can get something just as effective for cheaper. The signing of Craig Bellamy on huge wages did little to remedy this.
Man City – A- – Didn’t manage to move on Carlos Tevez. Apart from that they look nailed on for the title.
Man Utd – A – Rumors that Sneijder was arriving never came to fruition as Sir Alex bored us all to sleep on deadline day. All their business was done in time for everyone to go on holiday though.
Newcastle – D – The Toon didn’t manage to add a striker and will have to rely on an injury prone Demba Ba. Davide Santon is a more than amiable proposition at right back as he arrives from Inter. Losing Joey Barton and Kevin Nolan will be a tough.
Norwich – C – Very quiet on deadline day as they were another to get it all out the way early. Most of Paul Lambert’s signings come from the lower league and have much to prove.
QPR – B – It’s not that Neil Warnock didn’t make signings. They’re just all a little panicked. Barton is the best of the bunch with journeymen in the shape of Luke Young, Anton Ferdinand, Shaun Wright-Phillips and Jason Puncheon all also arriving. Can Joey keep them up? Yes.
Stoke – A* – Shrewd business doesn’t even cover it. Tony Pulis managed to sign proven players at Premier League level and ones that stick to his philosophy – even if it is to kick the ball towards giants masquerading as footballers. Peter Crouch and Kenwyne Jones will be an interesting strike partnership.
Sunderland – C – Don’t get me wrong. The Black Cats signed a lot, and I mean A LOT, of players. None of them excite anymore than a conversation with boss Steven Bruce on the merits of reconstructive nose surgery would. Deadline day signing Nicklas Bendtner is always good for a laugh though.
Swansea – A – Another side that did its business before the window shut and signing ‘keeper Michel Vorm was a wonderstroke.
Tottenham – D – It’s hard to know where to start and end with this lot. If they’d signed Cahill we’d be talking them up as nailed on for fourth. As it is they got Scott Parker to shore up the midfield and Emmanuel Adebayor will be looking to prove a point.
West Brom – B – Not losing Peter Odemwingie was huge for the Baggies. They still look susceptible at the back and the increased expectations may cause some problems in the camp.
Wigan – D – Another side that fails to excite with their signings. Losing Charles N’Zogbia is a huge blow for a side that will struggle.
Wolves – A – Roger Johnson and Jamie O’Hara are very good signings at their end of the table. Hanging onto Kevin Doyle and Matt Jarvis was also huge.