It once again proved to be a frustrating time for all Evertonians during the transfer window as the late departures of Jermaine Beckford, Yakubu and star player Mikel Arteta left David Moyes with a threadbare squad.
Money has always been tight at Goodison Park over the past few seasons, but chairman Bill Kenwright confirmed last month there would be no new additions for the club due to a lack of funds.
Many fans expected the club to go into September with the same squad, but nobody could have predicted the exit of Arteta which shocked the club to its core.
Here are seven players the team should have targeted during the transfer window.
Charles N’Zogbia’s heroics throughout the 2010-11 season was one of the main reasons for Wigan Athletic surviving relegation by the skin of their teeth on the final day of the campaign.
Even before the final whistle was blown at the Britannia Stadium back in May, the ex-Newcastle winger had his suitors and it looked like he was always destined for a move away from DW Stadium.
One thing David Moyes’ men have lacked over recent seasons is a winger with genuine pace to burn, and the 25-year-old N'Zogbia fit the bill perfectly. The Frenchman would have proved the perfect creator for the likes of Louis Saha and Tim Cahill. With his eye for the goal, he had the ability to become an Everton hero.
N’Zogbia’s price was always going to be a stumbling block for the cash-strapped Goodison Park club and in the end he made his way to Villa Park.
Not many players divide opinion like Joey Barton.
The 29-year-old’s reputation has always gone before his ability on the pitch and his reputation alone is certainly one of the reasons why he has never added to his solitary England cap.
Barton was the standout performer for Newcastle United last year as they maintained their place in the Premier League, but his outbursts on Twitter led to his swift departure from the club.
Everton have missed a tough tackling, no-nonsense midfielder since Lee Carsley’s departure from the club, and the Liverpool born midfielder could have easily filled the void.
The addition of Barton would also have allowed the likes of Leon Osman and Ross Barkley to push further up the pitch, but the move never materialized.
The arrival of Samir Nasri at Manchester City had raised question marks over the future of Adam Johnson, but the England man will be staying at the Etihad Stadium for the time being.
With the transfer window nearing its conclusion, Johnson was linked to a loan move to a number of Premier League clubs including Chelsea, Liverpool and Everton.
Adept on both wings and with an eye for goal, it is easy to see why Roberto Mancini decided to keep his man at the club.
The arrival of Johnson would have lifted spirits at Goodison Park and his excellent crossing ability would have no doubt benefited Tim Cahill as well as the rest of the team.
David Moyes has an excellent ability to buy players from the Football League and turn them into household names in England’s top flight.
Joleon Lescott, Phil Jagielka and Tim Cahill have all successfully made the step up and it was rumored that Shane Long would be the next name on that impressive list.
The Republic of Ireland striker had acquired a long list of admirers after starring for Reading in the Championship with 23 league goals, but after his team failed to gain promotion, his future was away from the Madejski Stadium and in the Premier League.
With cash tight at Goodison Park, Moyes was unable to bid for the 24-year-old and in the end Roy Hodgson moved quickly to tie up the striker’s signature.
“You can’t win the league with kids” was a famous quote from TV pundit Alan Hansen, and how wrong was he!
After winning the league title with ‘kids’ in 1996, 2012 could well be the year when Manchester United repeat the feat and that team could well include Danny Welbeck.
The young forward was once again expected to go out on loan to gain more Premier League experience, but he may well be gaining that with Manchester United’s first team.
Last season the England striker was farmed out on loan to Sunderland and after an impressive season on Wearside, he earned his first call-up to the national side.
The 20-year-old has so far started all three of United’s league games in front of Javier Hernandez and Dimitar Berbatov, and has so far repaid Sir Alex Ferguson with goals against Tottenham and Arsenal.
Everton were one of the clubs linked with the youngster, but he may well just be United’s secret weapon this campaign.
With money tight and no cover for Leighton Baines at left back, it came as some surprise not to see David Moyes dip into the loan market for a back-up.
Chelsea defender Ryan Bertrand was linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge after starring for England U21’s in the European Championships over the summer months, but he failed to finalize a move away from the Blues.
Phil Neville and Tony Hibbert could well fill in at left back or left-sided defender.
Sylvain Distin could move across, but there is no second choice left back at the club.
The addition of Bertrand would give Baines chance to rest during the FA and League Cup, and he would prove welcome cover if the former Wigan man was ruled out through injury.
Following Birmingham City’s last day relegation to the Championship, Scott Dann was always going to be a wanted man.
Arsenal, Liverpool, Chelsea and the Toffees were all linked with the ex Walsall defender but in the end Blackburn stole a march on their rivals and moved for the player on transfer deadline day.
Throughout the transfer window Phil Jagielka was constantly linked with a move away from Goodison Park and it looked as if Dann would be the man to replace him, but thankfully for Everton fans Jagielka stayed put.
With Sylvain Distin not getting any younger Dann would have proved to be an adequate replacement for the Frenchman, but once again funds restricted David Moyes’ men in the transfer window.