Villas-Boas pulls off late coup by signing Liverpool's Meireles
Thursday 01 September 2011
The most surprising deal of a hectic evening last night was Raul Meireles joining Chelsea from Liverpool after handing in a late transfer request. He joined for a fee of £12m. The Portuguese midfielder joins his compatriot Andre Villas-Boas, who sold Meireles from Porto to Anfield last year. It was a surprise Liverpool let Meireles leave as he had hit his best form under Kenny Dalglish of late.
Tottenham Hotspur finally completed the signing of West Ham's Scott Parker. The England international midfielder left for a fee of £5m, with David Bentley moving in the opposite direction on a season's loan. Parker won the Football Writers' Footballer of the Year, and regained his place in the England team. With Sandro injured, and Tom Huddlestone returning to fitness, Parker should provide steel in midfield.
Heading the other way, from Spurs to West Ham, was Bentley. Spurs bought him from Blackburn Rovers for £15m in 2008, but he struggled to win a regular starting place. Arsenal's Henri Lansbury has followed him to West Ham, also on a year-long loan deal.
Peter Crouch was not the only tall striker signed by Stoke yesterday. They also bought Cameron Jerome from Birmingham City for £4m. The departures from St Andrew's continued as defender Scott Dann left for Blackburn Rovers for £7.7m. Aston Villa made two late signings from Spurs last night, buying Scottish right-back Alan Hutton and bringing in Jermaine Jenas on loan from Spurs for the season.
Liverpool's summer clear-out made progress beyond Meireles, as Joe Cole, Christian Poulsen and David Ngog all left. The first two went to France, as Cole was loaned to Lille and Poulsen joined Evian. Ngog, though, was sold to Bolton for £4m. Owen Coyle also signed Chelsea midfielder Gaël Kakuta on loan until January.
Manchester City made their final signing of the summer, as Owen Hargreaves signed a one-year deal. City also sold Shaun Wright-Phillips for £5m to Queen's Park Rangers who also bought Anton Ferdinand from Sunderland. Jason Puncheon also signed for QPR, leaving Southampton. Fulham signed Czech international defender Zdenek Grygera, while Twente striker Bryan Ruiz said he was joining for £10.6m. Wigan signed winger Shaun Maloney from Celtic for £1m.
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