Under-the-radar January transfers!

01.02.2023 12:37:25 Adam England
Football player contract signing, transfer image
  •  There have been a number of high-profile transfers this January, with the likes of Mykhailo Mudryk and Anthony Gordon moving clubs
  •  However, there have been plenty of fascinating moves away from the biggest names
  •  From young talents to experienced bargains, Premier League teams have made plenty of potentially astute signings this window

 

This transfer window, there have been a few high-profile moves that have garnered the most attention. From Chelsea’s acquisition of Ukrainian winger Mykhailo Mudryk from Shakhtar Donetsk for an initial €70 million to Anthony Gordon’s £45 million move from Everton to Newcastle, these big-money buys have hogged the headlines.

But what about those transfers that have flown under the radar, but could prove to be astute decisions? 

 

Tetê – Shakhtar Donetsk to Leicester City, loan

It’s not been the easiest of seasons for Leicester City so far. In fact, it’s fair to say it’s been one of the most testing campaigns for the club since their promotion back to the Premier League almost a decade ago. 

They haven’t been too active in the transfer market, but attacking midfielder Tetê has arrived on loan from Shakhtar until the end of the season. The 22-year-old Brazilian, who can also play as a winger, spent time on loan with Lyon in Ligue 1 for almost a year, but has now rocked up at the King Power Stadium.  

Leicester haven’t been short of goals compared to the teams around them, but the added attacking threat of the Brazil under-23 international will only help. That they beat Leeds United, one place below them in the table with a game in hand, only makes it a sweeter deal.

 

Jhon Duran – Chicago Fire to Aston Villa 

Aston Villa had high hopes for this season, but it hasn’t quite worked out just yet. Head coach Steven Gerrard lost his job in October after the club won just two of their first 12 league games of the season, and relegation looked more likely than a European challenge. 

But former Arsenal manager Unai Emery has taken over, and the club’s fortunes have been improving. And now, highly rated Colombian teenager Jhon Duran has joined from Chicago Fire in the MLS. He only turned 19 in December, but forward Duran joins for a fee of almost £15m, and is a Colombian international too. He made his debut for his country in September, coming on for national icon Radamel Falcao

The signing is perhaps something of a coup for Villa, who sold striker Danny Ings to West Ham United earlier this month, as Duran had previously been linked with the likes of Liverpool and Manchester United. Nevertheless, the 6’1 teen will be looking to make his mark sooner rather than later. 

 

Maximo Perrone – Vélez Sarsfield to Manchester City 

It’s been a quiet January window for Manchester City, perhaps understandable after spending so much on Erling Haaland and Kalvin Phillips in the summer. But one addition they have made is the young midfielder Máximo Perrone. Signed from Vélez Sarsfield for £8.2m, the 20-year-old Argentinian is very much thought to be one for the future, but is joining up with the club as soon as the 2023 South American U-20 Championship finishes.  

He’s something of a defensive playmaker, good at creating chances, controlling the ball, and dribbling. We’re unlikely to see him make too many appearances this season, but if Pep Guardiola’s team has bad luck with injuries he could end up making his bow. If not, next season will surely be his time. 

 

Dango Ouattara – FC Lorient to AFC Bournemouth 

£20m is quite a lot of money for a team to spend on a 20-year-old in their first season back in the top flight, but Bournemouth will be hoping Dango Ouattara pays it back sooner rather than later. The young forward has five goals in 11 games for Burkina Faso, admittedly some of them not coming against the strongest opposition, and scored six goals in 18 games for FC Lorient this season.

A creative, confident young player, Ouattara could perhaps benefit from more consistency, but this should come with time. It’s not a stretch to suggest that he could be the difference between Bournemouth staying up or going down this season, and if he does well he could potentially move on for a hefty fee in a couple of years too.  

 

Pablo Sarabia – Paris Saint-Germain to Wolverhampton Wanderers 

Under new boss Julen Lopetegui, Wolverhampton Wanderers have wasted no time in jumping into the transfer market. It’s understandable, as they’ve struggled this season. 

Perhaps the most interesting new addition is Pablo Sarabia. The 30-year-old 26-cap Spain international comes with a wealth of experience, most notably for Getafe and Sevilla, and he’s a Ligue 1 winner with Paris Saint-Germain too. But he was a bit-part player for the Parisians, spending last season on loan with Sporting CP, and could shine at Wolves 

The reported €5m fee could prove to be a bargain, particularly if Wolves stay up. But for Sarabia to be effective, Wolves will need to keep the ball. It’s something they’ve not been great at this season, but it’s still early days with Lopetegui at the helm. 

 

Mislav Oršić – Dinamo Zagreb to Southampton

30-year-old Mislav Oršić, fresh from starring in the World Cup as Croatia finished third, joins a struggling Southampton side hoping to help them stay in the Premier League. New manager Nathan Jones’ first signing, Oršić cost just £8m and this could be seen as a snip if he gets off the ground fast. 

The highest scoring Dinamo player in European history, Oršić has 27 caps for his country too. With plenty of experience, he could be just what the Saints need as they battle relegation, even if he risks being overshadowed by arrivals like Carlos Alcaraz, the young Argentinian midfielder who arrived from Racing Club

 

 

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