Everton FC: David Moyes' 10 Best Transfer Moves

Shona BlackContributor IIOctober 5, 2012

Everton FC: David Moyes' 10 Best Transfer Moves

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    David Moyes has rightly been lauded for his management of Everton Football Club. 

    The Scotsman has become renowned for squeezing respectable results from a team with limited resources while others all around him seem to be luxuriating in evermore outrageous "financial doping." 

    It is a widely admired trait in an age when footballing success seems hopelessly dependent on extravagant spending. Neutrals everywhere have been delighted by Everton's strong start to the 2012-13 Premier League season.

    There are two key elements that have allowed Moyes to consistently put together quality teams on the (relatively) cheap—Everton's excellent youth academy and Moyes' talent in the transfer market. 

    Here are the ten best transfer moves so far in Moyes' Everton career.

10. Nikica Jelavic from Rangers, 2012

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    At the miserable start of Everton's 2011-12 season, it was difficult to see where the goals were going to come from.

    There was Louis Saha—when he was fit and in the mood.

    There was Tim Cahill—whose scoring days seemed to be behind him.

    There was a repeat Landon Donovan cameo—which this time came to nothing.

    Then came January signing Nikica Jelavic.

    The £6-million Croatian striker made his mark almost instantly, and despite playing only half the season, easily became Everton's top scorer with 11 goals in 16 appearances.

9. Joleon Lescott from Wolves, 2006

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    Former centre-back Moyes has an eye for defenders, and several of his best signings have been across the back.

    Not only did Joleon Lescott perform admirably for Everton in his three years at Goodison, but the club netted a substantial profit when they sold him (albeit reluctantly) to Manchester City for £22 million in 2009—a 440 percent increase from his £5 million Wolves price tag.

8. Phil Jagielka from Sheffield United, 2007

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    Another talented central defender, Phil Jagielka joined Everton from Sheffield United in 2007 for £4 million.

    Jagielka soon became the focal point of the Everton defence, and remains a steadily influential figure.

7. Phil Neville from Manchester United, 2005

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    Bringing Phil Neville in from Man United for £3.5 million hardly had the hallmark of a glamour signing.

    But the versatile veteran has seen his waning career given fresh life at Goodison where he has become a stalwart, consistently performing wherever needed—often filling in at defence—and captaining the side.

6. Marouane Fellaini from Standard Liege, 2008

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    Moyes broke the club transfer record to secure Belgian midfielder Marouane Fellaini for £15 million in 2008.

    There may have been times that the fee looked steep—early discipline problems, occasional anonymous spells—but it certainly looked to have paid off when Fellaini started the 2012-13 season in the form of his career.

5. Mikel Arteta from Real Sociedad, 2005

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    Spanish midfielder Mikel Arteta arrived on loan from Real Sociedad in January 2005, a move Moyes was able to make permanent for just £2 million.

    Arteta's creativity in midfield made him Everton's driving force during his six seasons at Goodison. 

4. Steven Pienaar from Borussia Dortmund, 2007 and Spurs, 2012

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    Midfielder Steven Pienaar actually represents two triumphs for David Moyes—his initial spell at the club was on a loan deal made permanent from Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund, and then his return in a similar arrangement after a disillusioning move to Tottenham.

    This return in January 2012 had a particular impact on Everton's resurgent form, helping to rescue a season that, at times in the first half, seemed likely to threaten relegation. 

3. Tim Howard from Manchester United, 2006

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    In 2006, Everton signed troubled Manchester United keeper Tim Howard on loan.

    The American immediately regained the form and confidence that had first attracted Man United's interest, and Moyes signed him to a permanent deal for £3 million.

    Howard has since established himself as one of the Premier League's top goalkeepers.

2. Leighton Baines from Wigan, 2007

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    One of the most talented full-backs of his generation, Leighton Baines joined Everton from Wigan in 2007 for a transfer fee rising to £6 million.

    The left-back's ever-reliable presence, plus his outstanding record for scoring and assists, has made him one of Everton's all-time great players.

1. Tim Cahill from Milwall, 2004

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    In terms of value for money, it is impossible to look past the £1.5-million move for Tim Cahill from Milwall in 2004.

    The Australian midfielder racked up 68 goals in 256 starts for Everton, often finishing top scorer.

    Cahill's performances over his eight seasons at Goodison were consistently crucial to the team's success, leading the Everton FC website to describe him as "one of the Club's greatest players in the Premier League era."