January Transfer Window in the Premier League: 15 Things You Might Want to Know
Some people love the January transfer window, and others hate it.
It all boils down to the status of your team, the players you have and the money you've got to spend.
Mid-table clubs with no money and good players can be easy pickings for the cash-rich teams in the Premier League, but if you want something a bit different then occasionally you have to look abroad.
With Gary Cahill's move from Bolton Wanderers to Chelsea comes the first bit of interesting business from any of the Premier League's "top" teams.
With just two weeks to go, we're now down to the period where things start to become more frantic, and more and more stories of offers and bids begin to surface.
Whatever your view on the January transfer window, here are 15 things you might not have known.
The transfer window concept was first introduced in the 03/04 season in the Premier League by governing body FIFA.
Many other European leagues were already using a transfer window system, and the Premier League had to toe the line.
Many managers dislike the system and prefer the previous method of being able to sign a player at any time.
Reading manager Steve Coppell recently said:
I don't anticipate losing any of my players but I've had a couple of what I'd call scurrilous inquiries.
I cannot see the logic in a transfer window. It brings on a fire-sale mentality, causes unrest via the media and means clubs buy too many players."
Perhaps the biggest piece of business in that first January window was Jose Antonio Reyes signing for Arsenal at a cost of £10.5 million.
Opening and Closing Dates
Continuing on from Steve Coppell's quote on the previous slide, not everybody who can buy in the midseason transfer window gets the same deal anyway.
England's window is open January 1st - January 31st, Denmark's is January 5th - January 31st, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Scotland's is January 1st - February 2nd, USA/Canada are in the off season currently, Sweden and Norway are in their preseason window of January 1st - March 31st and Japan is also in their preseason window of January 8th - April 2nd.
That is why it can be hard closing deals sometimes!
Both these players have since left those respective clubs as Parker now plays for title-chasing Spurs, with Saha at mid-table Everton.
January 2005 brought about the sale of Nicholas Anelka from Manchester City to Fenerbahce for £7 million, and this wouldn't be the last time Anelka moved on in January as you will find out.
The other big moves were Fernando Morientes from Real Madrid to Liverpool for £6.3 million, James Beattie from Southampton to Everton for £6.5 million and one Jean-Alain Boumsong from Rangers to Newcastle United for £8 million.
Strange now to think that James Beattie costs as much as Fernando Morientes did back then.
The January transfer window in 2006 was a bit busier than its predecessor.
The 05/06 season saw some big names join the Premier League in the form of Theo Walcott and Emmanuel Adebayor to Arsenal, Patrice Evra and Nemanja Vidic to Manchester United, Dean Ashton to West Ham and Daniel Agger to Liverpool.
All of these signings still play in the Premier League, barring the retired Dean Ashton, and only Emmanuel Adebayor has transferred clubs.
Adebayor is on loan to Arsenal rivals Tottenham Hotpsur from his parent club Manchester City, and could be looking to make a permanent switch in the Summer.
2007 saw the arrival of Ashley Young into the Premier League as Aston Villa paid Watford £9.65 million for the wingers services.
Young has since moved to Manchester United and has featured multiple times for England.
Manchester United paid almost double the fee Watford received by shelling out £17 million for Young from Aston Villa.
In 2008 the move of Nicholas Anelka to Chelsea was the main focal point.
Anelka had been scoring well for Bolton in that season, so much so that Chelsea paid £15 million for his services.
Anelka left Chelsea in January 2012 after signing for Chinese side Shanghai Shenua.
Anelka was the first player to be sold under new Chelsea manager Andres Villas Boas, and had been told he was no longer required at the club.
Harry Redknapp's Tottenham were the busy team in the 2009 market.
Keane had only spent 6 months at Liverpool after the Merseyside club had paid £20.3 million for his services in August.
2010 saw Alex Ferguson splash £10 million on Chris Smalling, but with the agreement he wouldn't move from Fulham until the end of the season.
Smalling is doing well at United, whilst Robinho has found himself an AC Milan player.
In perhaps the most exciting January transfer window to date, January 2011 brought shocks galore as former Kop hero Fernando Torres handed in a transfer request at Liverpool and he was subsequently sold to Chelsea for £50 million.
Liverpool had completed a move for Ajax forward Luis Suarez just hours after for £22.4 million, but the pair never got the chance to share the dressing room.
Kenny Dalglish immediately reinvested the Torres money into Newcastle United's Andy Carroll in a £35 million deal that still looks like poor judgment to this day.
Darren Bent signed for Aston Villa from Sunderland in an £18 million deal; floppy haired David Luiz also went to Stamford Bridge for £21.3 million; and Manchester City flexed their financial muscle with the £27 million capture of Edin Dzeko.
Most Money Spent Cumulatively in a Window
2011 saw the most money spent in the history of the January transfer window as £225 million was exchanged between the clubs.
The previous highest was in 2008 where £175 million was spent.
The majority of that money was spent by only 4 sides as Chelsea, Liverpool, Aston Villa and Man City made some big purchases.
Most Expensive Player
Fernando Torres is the most expensive player ever bought or sold in the January transfer window at a hefty £50 million.
Chelsea bought the Spanish striker from Liverpool in January 2011 after the Spaniard had submitted a transfer request to force through the move.
Torres cited wanting to play at a top club as his reason for leaving.
He has yet to win one with his new club and finds himself with an unenviable record of 3 goals in 29 appearances for the Stamford Bridge outfit.
That's £16.67 million per goal if you were curious.
Highest Net Spend by a Club
Unsurprisingly it is Chelsea who have this record also, largely due to the £50 million they spent on Fernando Torres and the £25 million they spent on David Luis.
Chelsea's net spend in the 2011 January window was £71 million, but it still did not ensure them the Premier League crown, as Manchester United won their 19th title.
Biggest January Transfer Flop so Far
It's a tough one to call, but the front runners for biggest January flop have to be Fernando Torres and Andy Carroll respectively.
Carroll has scored four goals in 25 appearances for the Merseyside Reds, whereas Fernando Torres has struck just three times in 29 games.
That's a cost of £8.75 million per goal for Andy Carroll, and £16.67 million per goal with Torres.
I think Torres just edges this one in the flop stakes, but it would only take a hot streak of form from either player to really improve their statistics.
When it comes to January transfers, Manchester United's Alex Ferguson has stated he'd rather wait until the Summer in order to sign a player.
However, his previous purchase in 2006 of Patrice Evra is perhaps the January bargain of them all.
Evra signed from Monaco for £5.5 million and was substituted at half time on his Manchester United debut because he was playing that badly.
Fast forward 6 years and Evra is captain of the Manchester club and perhaps one of the best left backs in the world on his day.
So there you have 15 facts and figures regarding the January transfer window that you may not have known before.
Admittedly there are a few personal opinions thrown in there for good measure (i.e Torres V Carroll in the flop stakes), but what would B/R be without an opinion or two?
I am one of those people who really enjoys the transfer window and I usually find myself glued to Sky Sports News channel once the final few hours are winding down.
Sky have made a really good job of making the football news extra interesting whilst they take you on an emotional January roller-coaster.
Who knows what may be in store in the next few weeks, but I can guarantee it will be interesting if you're a football fan.
You just never know what is going to happen in January now, or whether a huge signing will even benefit your club.
After all, who would have thought Fernando Torres would suddenly stop being so prolific? Certainly not I.
Thanks for reading and follow me on twitter @petercwebster.
If you feel like reading some more articles then check out my hot tips for the Euro 2012 Golden Boot.