The Top 20 Serie a Transfers in the January Window

Adam Digby@@Adz77Featured ColumnistFebruary 1, 2014

The Top 20 Serie a Transfers in the January Window

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    The January transfer window is usually seen in Italy as a market to "repair" squads, and as such it often lacks the major movement seen in some other leagues across Europe.

    This year, however, a number of Serie A’s bigger clubs have endured or enjoyed vastly different seasons to the ones they expected.

    Roma have thrived, prompting their American owners to invest again in the team in order to aid Rudi Garcia’s push for silverware. In stark contrast, Milan have suffered a woeful start to 2013-14 and have needed to bring in a number of players to help new coach Clarence Seedorf.

    Their moves have caused a domino effect around the league, and the following pages bring you the 20 best deals completed this month.

Keisuke Honda to Milan

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    The Japanese star is another free agent signing by Adriano Galliani, and Milan will hope Keisuke Honda will prove to be another excellent move from the ageing director.

    A free-kick specialist, the 27-year-old will form a formidable attacking unit with Mario Balotelli and Kaka, although he may take a while to get used to Italian football following his move from Russian side CSKA Moscow.

Danilo D'Ambrosio to Inter

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    Torino captain Danilo D'Ambrosio became the first signing of the Erick Thohir era at Inter, the 25-year-old signing on a permanent deal.

    He was out of contract at the end of the season and the Nerazzurri moved to sign him now ahead of interest from Roma and Juventus. Able to play on either flank, he will provide coach Walter Mazzarri with vital options in wide areas.

Radja Nainggolan to Roma

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    Michael Bradley’s sensational move to Toronto FC was aided in part by the arrival of the tenacious Radja Nainggolan in the Italian capital.

    The 25-year-old moved from Cagliari, initially on loan at a cost of €3 million, with Roma able to turn it into a co-ownership deal with a further outlay of €6.5 million in the summer.

    He has settled quickly into life with the Giallorossi, slotting seamlessly into midfield alongside Kevin Strootman, Daniele De Rossi and Miralem Pjanic, hoping he can play well enough at the Stadio Olimpico to earn a place in the Belgian World Cup squad.

Helder Postiga to Lazio

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    Without a backup for Miroslav Klose, Lazio have struggled for goals this term, so a move for Helder Postiga fills a definite need for the Roman club.

    The 31-year-old arrives on loan from Valencia until the end of the season, having scored three goals in 10 appearances for the Spanish side.

Jorginho to Napoli

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    The Brazilian midfielder has been a revelation at newly promoted Hellas Verona, helping them maintain a lofty league position for their return to Serie A.

    Napoli beat off a host of clubs to acquire Jorginho, who they hope will provide more flair than the Swiss trio of Blerim Dzemaili, Valon Behrami and Gokhan Inler, eventually partnering the latter in Rafael Benitez’ 4-2-3-1 formation.

    Only 22, he contributed seven goals and three assists in his first top-flight season before leaving the Gialloblu in a co-ownership deal, at a cost of €5.5 million.

Anderson to Fiorentina

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    A move that is truly difficult to understand, the loan of Manchester United midfielder Anderson to Fiorentina is one of this winter’s most surprising moves.

    The Viola’s slick passing style and fast-paced counter-attacking appear ill at ease with what we have seen from the Brazilian over the last few years, but an injury to Borja Valero should see him receive some much-needed playing time in Italy.

Adil Rami to Milan

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    The French defender will hope to fulfil a desperate need for Milan, whose woeful central defence has been truly exposed this season.

    Now 28, Rami has formerly been a partner to Philippe Mexes for Les Bleus and perhaps their San Siro reunion could bear fruit for Clarence Seedorf.

Marco Motta to Genoa

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    A former captain of the Italy Under-21s, Marco Motta has failed to deliver on the promise he once showed at Roma and will hope a move to Genoa can reignite his career.

    Now 27, he has been an outcast at Juventus since the arrival of Antonio Conte but has another 18 months left on his contract with the Turin giants, who will hope Genoa exercise their option to make this loan deal permanent in the summer.

Francesco Lodi to Catania

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    The 29-year-old playmaker returns to Sicily, having failed to make a similar impact at Genoa, but Francesco Lodi will be feted by Catania fans.

    The skilful midfielder is a deadly free-kick specialist and his first match back with the Elefanti saw him register a goal and an assist.

Thomas Manfredini to Sassuolo

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    The newly promoted club lost Francesco Acerbi after his battle with cancer forced him to take some more time away from the game and turned to Atalanta veteran Thomas Manfredini.

    The 33-year-old was a longtime target for Juventus, with both coach Antonio Conte and general director Beppe Marotta known to be fans. Sassuolo will hope his leadership can steer them to Serie A safety in the second half of the season.

Michel Bastos to Roma

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    Earlier this week it was revealed that Federico Balzaretti will be out indefinitely following surgery to cure a groin issue. That makes the arrival of Brazilian Michel Bastos extremely timely.

    The former Lille winger is well known to Rudi Garcia, after they spent time together in France, and the Giallorossi will hope he can enjoy a renaissance similar to that of Gervinho under his former boss.

    Still only 30, the player is on loan from UAE club Al Ain, with Roma having the option of making the move permanent in the summer.

Alessandro Matri to Fiorentina

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    Injuries to Mario Gomez and Giuseppe Rossi left Vincenzo Montella short of attacking options, and the club turned to Milan misfit Alessandro Matri to cover their absence.

    He instantly repaid them, netting two goals in his first 45 minutes in a Viola shirt—perhaps the playing days of his former coach will allow him to bring the best from the former Juventus man.

Michael Essien to Milan

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    KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - JULY 21:  Michael Essien of Chelsea tackles Norsharul of Malaysia during the match between Chelsea and Malaysia XI on July 21, 2013 at the Shah Alam Stadium in Shah Alam, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.  (Photo by Stanley Chou/Getty Image
    Stanley Chou/Getty Images

    Despite promising an influx of youth, Michael Essien has arrived from Chelsea at the age of 31, hoping to become part of Clarence Seedorf’s new-look Milan.

    The Ghanaian will be seeking an increase in playing time ahead of the World Cup after playing just five league games under Jose Mourinho this term.

    With Riccardo Montolivo, Bryan Cristante, Andrea Poli and Nigel De Jong already part of the Rossoneri squad, that will not be a foregone conclusion.

Nicolas Burdisso to Genoa

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    Relegated to the bench as the Benatia-Castan duo thrived in Rome, Burdisso left for Genoa hoping to find the playing time that would enable him to find a place in Argentina’s World Cup squad.

    The 32-year-old has been stuck on 49 international caps for quite some time and will seek to change that this summer, but that has forced him to leave a club he has served so well over the past four years. His veteran influence could be missed in the capital.

Pablo Osvaldo to Juventus

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    After falling out of favour at Southampton, Pablo Osvaldo returns to the peninsula, adding a sound reserve to the Bianconeri ranks.

    If Antonio Conte can curb his penchant for acting out, the striker could be a vital addition weapon for the club as they chase both domestic and European glory.

Sergio Floccari to Sassuolo

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    With a plethora of skilled wide players, newly promoted Sassuolo were desperate for a central striker and the addition of Sergio Floccari fulfils that need.

    The 32-year-old, who scored 31 goals in 105 appearances for the Roman club, also brings some much-needed veteran experience to a young Neroverdi side.

Paolo De Ceglie to Genoa

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    Arriving on loan after spending his life at Juventus is likely to be a wrench for Paolo De Ceglie, but his career had clearly stagnated in Turin.

    A promising youngster, the now 27-year-old will hope a reunion with former Bianconeri youth team coach Gian Piero Gasperini will be the kickstart he needs to realise that potential.

Adel Taarabt to Milan

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    With Clarence Seedorf switching to a 4-2-3-1 formation, it was expected the club would move to provide an alternative for the trident of players behind Mario Balotelli.

    That one of them was Adel Taarabt did catch most people by surprise, however, the Moroccan joining on loan from QPR.

    That meant cancelling a similar deal with Fulham, but the 24-year-old was undoubtedly happy to join the Rossoneri, telling reporters he had joined "the best club in the world." (per FootballItalia)

Hernanes to Inter

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    Leaving the Lazio training ground in tears, Hernanes moves to Inter hoping to have the opposite effect. The transfer window has been one to forget for the Nerazzurri who will hope the Brazilian can revive their ailing performances on the pitch.

    He's struggled for form over the past two years but can still expect to be part of his nation's World Cup squad, and Walter Mazzarri will hope to see him at his best given the fee paid.

Modibo Diakite to Fiorentina

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    Modibo Diakite only left Lazio in the summer but finds himself back in Italy with Vincenzo Montella's Viola picking him up on the final day.

    The 28-year-old fulfils a real need for the club who, despite possessing an excellent midfield, have struggled at the back this season.