The January transfer window has come and gone without much spending in Spain. It’s not totally unsurprising considering the financial state of the country and football, while most of the business done by clubs would have been to move on some of their star names.
But as usual with most transfer windows, we’re once again looking at another major player leaving Spanish football for different, albeit less sunnier shores.
Ignacio Monreal made the move from Malaga to Arsenal on deadline day and is sure to be seen as another blow to La Liga.
Malaga had already relinquished their hold on one of Spain’s best players in Santi Cazorla last summer, and now a player who is good enough to challenge Jordi Alba for a starting spot in Spain’s national team has been lost too.
Despite that, La Liga clubs remained in the hunt for signings and January bargains.
Atletico Madrid have addressed an important area of need in their squad and brought in a backup for left-back Filipe Luis.
Former Liverpool defender Emiliano Insua joins Atletico Madrid, who are currently second in La Liga, from Sporting Club Portugal and will offer much more than Cate Diaz would in the full-back position.
A smart signing by Diego Simeone and one that was needed for much of the campaign up until this point.
Malaga would have been disappointed to let Diego Buonanotte go, but the wage bill at La Rosaleda needed cutting and the Argentine midfielder was one of a few to feel the heat.
Buonanotte has played well this season whenever called upon in Manuel Pellegrini’s side but the player who can operate in a variety of midfield and attacking roles has joined Granada and will be of great help to the struggling side.
Malaga have done very well to pick up PSG’s Diego Lugano on loan for the rest of the season. The Uruguayan has not featured regularly for the Paris side this season and is also not cup-tied for the Champions League.
He’s a powerful figure and will offer a great deal of experience to Manuel Pellegrini’s side. In terms of getting the most out of the season from here until May, Malaga have completed a very smart piece of business in signing the centre-back.
Lucas Piazon was another loan signing by Malaga, as they have looked to raise funds via player sales and replace outgoing names with loans for the remainder of the season.
This signing more than anything is about the development of the Brazilian forward, who recently made an impressive cameo for Chelsea in their Premier League win over Aston Villa.
Manuel Pellegrini is one of the better coaches in Europe for developing youngsters, and Piazon will learn a lot in his short time at La Rosaleda.
Malaga may be stretched for the rest of the season as they are still in the Champions League and fighting for the highest possible finish in La Liga. So for all parties, this is a good move.
Real Madrid made an uncharacteristic splash in the transfer market this January by picking up goalkeeper Diego Lopez from Sevilla.
The former Castilla player has returned to the Bernabeu following Iker Casillas’ injury, which will leave the Madrid captain out of action for the next two to three months.
Lopez is a good signing for the club and a player of excellent quality to provide a greater level of backup than that of Antonio Adan.
Lopez will be thrown straight into the deep end in a few weeks as Real Madrid prepare for their Champions League clash with Manchester United. Fortunately, he has plenty of experience in Europe’s top competition due to his time with Villarreal.
Alongside the signing of Diego Lopez this January, Real Madrid made a surprise move for Brazilian midfielder Casemiro, who joins the Spanish champions on loan for the rest of the season with an option to buy.
The youngster is highly rated in Brazil and will play for Real Madrid Castilla during his loan spell.
This could be a very interesting deal for Madrid, as with the player’s huge potential and the low-key nature of this deal, it’s quite possible we could be looking back as this being the best signing of the January window.