Transfer Deadline Day: Grading the Major Premier League Signings and Loans

Allan JiangTransfers CorrespondentSeptember 1, 2011

Transfer Deadline Day: Grading the Major Premier League Signings and Loans

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    Transfer deadline day was an anti-climax because there were no blockbuster signings.

    Tottenham Hotspur kept to their word in not selling Luka Modrić. 

    Wesley Sneijder believed he was close to signing with Manchester United, but felt at home with Inter Milan—whatever that means.

    Arsenal bought some players as many predicted, given it would have been natural to knee-jerk.   

    There were some peculiar signings, especially Everton signing Denis Stracqualursi on loan. Denis who? 

    Here are the grades for all the major Premier League signings and loans that happened on deadline day.  

Alan Hutton

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    From Tottenham Hotspur to Aston Villa for £3 million

    Grade: B

    Heading into the transfer deadline, right back was an issue for Aston Villa manager Alex McLeish. 

    Luke Young was sold to Queens Park Rangers, Eric Lichaj is out for months, Habib Beye has become a professional bench warmer and you're left with promising youngster Chris Herd.

    So signing Alan Hutton makes a lot of sense not to mention it's economically efficient, as Spurs bought him for £9 million. 

    Mind you, if Herd continues to play the way he did against Wolverhampton Wanderers, Hutton won't get a look in.       

André Santos

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    From Fenerbahçe to Arsenal for £6.2 million

    Grade: F

    Three months ago, Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger made it clear that he wouldn't buy a left back.

    José Enrique is sold to Liverpool for £6 million.

    Arsenal lose 8-2 to Manchester United and Wenger panic buys.

    André Santos will fail at left back, though I'm less pessimistic if he is played as a left winger. 

    For more information please read Six Reasons Why New Arsenal Left-Back André Santos Will Fail.

Anton Ferdinand

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    From Sunderland to Queens Park Rangers for £4 million

    Grade: C

    Not QPR's first choice centre back, given they were very keen on Sébastien Bassong whose move was dependent on Gary Cahill calling White Hart Lane home.

    Then there were rumours that Liam Ridgewell would be signed, which would be somewhat odd given QPR had just signed Armand Traoré. 

    So logically you'd think QPR manager Neil Warnock wanted to play Ridewell at centre-back. 

    Ferdinand is an average player, but QPR need as many players with Premier League experience to ensure they have a fighting chance to stay in the division.   

Bryan Ruiz

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    From Twente to Fulham for £10.6 million

    Grade: A

    Fulham needed some extra firepower to compliment Bobby Zamora and they went out and bought big with Bryan Ruiz.

    He's a very graceful and elegant footballer and I like him a lot.

    However, you should always be skeptical of forwards coming from the Dutch Eredivisie, as they have provided several flops in the Premier League.

    Like Mounir El Hamdaoui, Afonso Alves, Mateja Kežman and Jari Litmanen, just to name a few.   

Cameron Jerome

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    From Birmingham City to Stoke City for £4 million

    Grade: B

    Cameron Jerome is a typical Tony Pulis forward: strong, muscular and can lead the forward line.

    I wonder if Jerome knew Peter Crouch was going to be signed? 

Craig Bellamy

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    From Manchester City to Liverpool for free

    Grade: B

    Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini wanted Craig Bellamy out of Eastlands so desperately that he granted a free transfer.

    Bellamy has Premier League experience, can find the back of the net and he adds another dimension with his direct style of football.

    He will be a handy option off the bench. 

    He had ridiculously good games against Doncaster, Coventry and Portsmouth in The Championship, but I guess you'd expect that.

David N'Gog

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    From Liverpool to Bolton Wanderers for £4 million

    Grade: C

    Not entirely sure how Liverpool managed to sell a player who played 69 percent of Premiership games as a substitute for £4 million.

    Price aside, David N'Gog has potential, but I can't envision him having the same success Daniel Sturridge had with the Trotters.   

Denis Stracqualursi

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    From Tigre to Everton on loan

    Grade: N/A

    I know of him, but I haven't seen enough of him to provide any valid analysis.

    If you haven't wiki'd Denis Stracqualursi, he's a 23-year-old, 6'3", Argentinian forward. 

    Since 2010, he's scored 21 goals in 38 games for minnows Tigre. 

    Interestingly, he wasn't given an international appearance when then Argentine manager Diego Maradona was dishing out new caps like Christmas presents.   

    So I'll refer to Tim Vickery at Hawksbee & Jacobs.

    Here's what Vickery said about Stracqualursi. 

    He's not the slowest [...] We know that he can cope physically [...] however I'm not sure there's enough real quality in him to make the transition. If you [Everton] get anything out of it [Stracqualursi], it's a bonus.   

Gaël Kakuta

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    From Chelsea to Bolton Wanderers on loan

    Grade: A

    Win-win for both parties, for us, I like the fact that we've only handing him a six month loan. 

    Why not the whole season? Well come the Africa Cup of Nations, we may need Gaël Kakuta back. 

    Plus, Jack Wilshere and Daniel Sturridge developed as a result of Bolton Wanderers manager Owen Coyle giving the duo regular first team football. 

    This is what Kakuta needs.    

Jermaine Jenas

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    From Tottenham Hotspur to Aston Villa on loan

    Grade: B

    I would have given a C grading if this was a permanent signing because Jermaine Jenas is clearly on the decline. 

    Though anytime a club like Aston Villa can bolster their depth with experienced players is helpful.

    Jenas comes on loan so if he is rubbish as he has been in recent seasons, then ship him back to White Hart Lane. 

    Hopefully Jenas has a positive rather than negative influence on the likes of Barry Bannan and Fabian Delph.  

Mikel Arteta

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    From Everton to Arsenal for £10 million

    Grade: A

    Excellent signing from Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger. 

    Mikel Arteta is essentially a poor man's Cesc Fàbregas, which means he will transition smoothly into Arsenal's midfield. 

    Arteta is a great player and a perfect fit with Arsenal's philosophy and the way they play. 

    The only concern is Arteta's fitness.  

Nicklas Bendtner

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    From Arsenal to Sunderland on loan

    Grade: A

    Sometimes people lambaste Nicklas Bendtner mainly due to his inflated ego coupled by his inability to score regularly. 

    It's not his fault when he's deployed on the right side of midfield or given a 10 minute cameo.

    When he has played as a centre forward like he did against Porto, he has shown pedigree.

    It's only on loan, there's no risk, and if Bendtner does score reguarly, it means Arsenal can make some money.     

Owen Hargreaves

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    Signed as a free agent by Manchester City

    Grade: A

    it's a win-win for both parties in that Owen Hargreaves gets to retain his status as a top flight professional footballer and Manchester City get a seasoned professional. 

    If Hargreaves doesn't play, it won't cost Manchester City anything.  

Patrick Van Aanholt

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    From Chelsea to Wigan Athletic on loan

    Grade: A

    I've been very impressed with Wigan Athletic manager Roberto Martínez's astute signings and loans.

    I like Patrick van Aanholt a lot but he wasn't going to play many minutes for us, so hopefully he can gain some invaluable Premier League experience.

Per Mertesacker

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    From Werder Bremen to Arsenal for £10 million

    Grade: A

    It's about time Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger bought a centre back.

    I think Per Mertesacker is on the decline, though this move could rejuvenate his career. 

    Last season, he looked pretty mediocre. Then again, his influential partner Naldo was out for 15 months, which coincided with Werder Bremen conceding the second most goals for a non-relegated side.

    I would have taken my hat off to Wenger if he bought Philipp Wollscheid because it's so obvious that he's on his way to becoming a great centre-back.

    As obvious as Vincent Kompany's rise at Anderlecht.  

Peter Crouch

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    From Tottenham Hotspur to Stoke City for £10 million

    Grade: A

    Peter Crouch and Kenwyne Jones as a combination. 

    No wonder Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger wants throws-ins to be banned. 

Raul Meireles

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    From Liverpool to Chelsea for £12 million

    Grade: C

    Not what we wanted, but still a smart signing.  I guess it was forced because Raul Meireles handed in a transfer request. 

    £12 million for someone who has had injuries issues and wasn't going to break into the Liverpool starting 11 seems a bit inflated, but I can live with it.

    Hopefully the Portuguese connection allows Meireles to integrate smoothly into our team.     

Royston Drenthe

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    From Real Madrid to Everton on loan

    Grade: A

    Excellent signing from Everton manager David Moyes. 

    Moyes is signing a player who has been rejected twice, perhaps even thrice because no club has bought him, and will be hungry to prove his critics wrong.

    What you get from Royston Drenthe is speed, speed and more speed. 

    He's a dynamic little, but stocky fighter.  

    He is really talented, but his attitude issues, indiscipline and tendency to party hard has seen him fall way short of the €14 million Real Madrid paid for him. 

Scott Dann

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    From Birmingham City to Blackburn Rovers

    Grade: A

    £5 million does seem a bit hefty for a club like Blackburn Rovers, but considering relegation would cost them £25 million, signing Scott Dann was a must.

    Christopher Samba and Dann will be an imposing partnership.     

Scott Parker

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    From West Ham United to Tottenham Hotspur for £6 million

    Grade: A

    Scott Parker won 77 percent of his tackles last season, the highest in the Premier League.

    Having a professional and team orientated player like Parker is invaluable for Spurs.  

Shaun Maloney

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    From Celtic to Wigan Athletic for £850,000

    Grade: C

    I remember Celtic fans raving about how good Shaun Maloney was several years ago.

    Since then he's been ravaged by injuries and looks a shadow of himself. 

    I don't think he'll work out for Wigan Athletic, but I guess since the transfer fee is so cheap, it's worth the risk.  

Shaun Wright-Phillips

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    From Manchester City to Queens Park Rangers for £5 million

    Grade: A

    Really good signing from QPR because Shaun Wright-Phillips is sharp, can score, can create and has looked great in pre-season.

    QPR's signings could keep them safe from relegation.  

Wilson Palacios

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    From Tottenham Hotspur to Stoke City for £6 million

    Grade: B

    Wilson Palacios fits perfectly with the Stoke mentality, but he never lived up to expectations at Spurs.

    Spurs were hoping to see the Wigan Athletic Palacios, but he didn't show up.

    Aside from being a liability when the ball was at his feet, he was always an easy target for a yellow card. 

    Not sold on this transfer, but I can understand the rationale behind it. 


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    From Everton to Blackburn Rovers for £1.5 million

    Grade: C

     Yakubu spent last season refining his shooting at Leicester City, at one point, scoring four goals in three games.

    He seems to have lost that yard of pace that made him so lethal, but £1.5 million isn't that much.  

    Will probably have the same influence Benni McCarthy did with West Ham United.   

Yossi Benayoun

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    From Chelsea to Arsenal on loan

    Grade: A

    I'm pretty sad to see him go to Arsenal because Yossi Benayoun is a quality player, but we seemed to want him more as a back-up than playing him in the starting 11. 

    At times when our midfield was lacking in creativity and idea, it was screaming out for Benayoun, but he never got his chance. 

    Arsène Wenger signing Benayoun on loan is very smart, and I wonder why we're allowing our player to on loan to one our rivals. 

Zdeněk Grygera

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    Signed as a free agent by Fulham

    Grade: F

    Squad depth is important, but I think I can speak for all the Juventus supporters in that Fulham are signing a dud.

    Zdeněk Grygera was never a Juventus standard player, consistently struggled even against pretty standard Serie A wingers. 

    When Grygera was getting a regular run in the starting 11, it was because Marco Motta was such a liability last season and Juventus management thought which one would do less damage.  

    Please also read Premier League: Worst 11 of the Week