Whether or not the ice-cold financial climate is having an effect everywhere other than Manchester City, the most notable feature of the first nine days of the January transfer window is how few deals have been completed. A plausible theory often expressed by managers is the domino effect by which one move triggers another, as a selling club suddenly need a replacement player and find money available; or at least promised, such is the nature of payments on what used to be known – and still is at Portsmouth – as the never-never. If this month follows the pattern of previous windows, there will be an almighty rush right at the end; last January questions were asked about why Andrey Arshavin was allowed to join Arsenal almost 24 hours after the supposedly final day.
The Arshavin signing meant Arsenal, Tottenham and the two Manchester clubs were the only ones to spend more than £10m a year ago. Spurs have no need to now, if Harry Redknapp can for once restrain himself, but the other three may do so again. Arsenal need a striker who will win headers, though they were rebuffed by Bordeaux's Marouane Chamakh. United have to decide if they can afford to see out another four months without further back-up in defence.
City will be a law unto themselves. Slow off the mark last time, after wasting so long in vain pursuit of Kaka, they still managed to divest themselves of £50m in three weeks, and have moved more quickly in courting Patrick Vieira.
The other serious spenders should be Birmingham City. Carson Yeung is prepared to invest up to £40m and a quarter of that has now gone in for Liverpool's Ryan Babel.
Players linked with Premier League clubs last week
Arsenal Sol Campbell (unattached), Carlton Cole (West Ham), Adam Matthews (Cardiff), Lacine Traoré (Cluj).
Birmingham Ryan Babel (Liverpool), Kris Boyd (Rangers), Craig Gardner (Aston Villa), Kenwyne Jones (Sunderland), Danijel Ljuboja (Grenoble).
Blackburn Eidur Gudjohnsen (Monaco), Amine Linganzi (St Etienne), Andwele Slory (Feyenoord).
Bolton Nuno Gomes (Benfica), Safet Nadarevic (Eskisehirspor).
Chelsea Vincenzo Iaquinta (Juventus), Giampaolo Pazzini (Sampdoria), Edin Dzeko (Wolfsburg).
Everton Benni McCarthy (Blackburn), Frédéric Piquionne (Portsmouth). Signed: Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy, loan).
Fulham Danijel Ljuboja (Grenoble), Jamie O'Hara (Tottenham), Stefano Okaka (Roma), Dimitris Salpigidis (Panathinaikos).
Hull Freddy Adu (Belenenses), Marlon Harewood (Aston Villa).
Liverpool Marouane Chamakh (Bordeaux), Adam Federici (Reading), Maxi Rodriguez (Atletico Madrid), Ruud van Nistelrooy (Real Madrid), Richard Stearman (Wolves).
Manchester City Cristian Ansakldi (Rubin Kazan), Simon Kjaer (Palermo), Victor Moses (Crystal Palace), Juan Sebastian Veron (Estudiantes). Signed: Patrick Vieira (Internazionale).
Manchester United Adam Matthews (Cardiff), Hatem Ben Arfa (Marseille), Giampaolo Pazzini (Sampdoria), Ryan Shawcross (Stoke).
Portsmouth David Nugent (Burnley, loan).
Stoke Safet Nadarevic (Eskisehirspor), Ruud van Nistelrooy (Real Madrid), Oriel Romeu (Barcelona).
Sunderland David Bentley (Tottenham), Guy Demel (Hamburg), Kevin Kuranyi (Schalke).
Tottenham John Carew (Aston Villa), Maxi Rodriguez (Atletico Madrid), Giampaolo Pazzini (Sampdoria), Miguel Veloso (Sporting Lisbon), Dejan Lovren (Dynamo Zagreb).
West Ham Robert Huth (Stoke), Nuno Gomes (Benfica), Eidur Gudjohnsen (Monaco), Adrian Mutu (Fiorentina), James Beattie (Stoke), Alan Hutton (Tottenham), Marlon Harewood (Aston Villa), Sergey Kornilenko (Zenit St Petersburg).
Wigan Roberto Canello (Sporting Gijon), Roberto Canella (Sporting Gijon), Matt Fryatt (Leicester), Scott McDonald (Celtic), Victor Moses (Crystal Palace). Signed: Vladimir Stojkovic (Sporting, loan).
Wolves Kris Commons (Derby), Fodo Mansare (Toulouse), Stephen Hunt (Hull), Habib Beye (Aston Villa), Maynor Figueroa (Wigan), Younes Kaboul (Portsmouth).
2009 January window
£176.2m spent by Premier League clubs.
£69.4m to foreign clubs.
£37.4m net spend by Premier League clubs.
£51m spent by Manchester City.
£44m spent by Tottenham.
£17m for most expensive player (Nigel de Jong, Hamburg to Man City).
6 Premier League clubs who spent nothing.
4 clubs who spent more than £10m (Manchester City, Manchester United, Tottenham, Arsenal).Reuse content