Goal.com Top 10 Transfers Of Winter 2011

Which players have been the best buys and top movers?
Each European transfer window, Goal.com International decides on the best acquisitions, in descending order from 1 to 10, and we encourage you to let us know your thoughts.

We judge based on:
  • The player's overall ability (this being the most important factor)
  • How the player will fit into his new line-up
  • How the player will adapt to his new surroundings, and vice-versa
  • The transfer fee payable, if any, and any other financial details known. (Transfer fees unconfirmed by either club or otherwise unknown are given as approximations and are marked in italics.)
For the reason that players arriving on permanent deals tend to be more adaptable and often more important, there is preference given to full transfers over loans. That is not to say that loans, co-ownerships etc. cannot be included, but players must be extra special to justify a space on such a move.

With all of that explained, it's time to see the list! This was last updated at 00:01 CET on Tuesday February 1st.

Last week: 1

AC Milan - Sampdoria - Undisc.

Antonio Cassano is an enigma to say the least, but there is no doubt at his best he can give a massive push to Milan's Scudetto bid. Capable of creating goals and scoring them in abundance, his talent alongside the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic will have attacking football enthusiasts' mouths watering. His superb start (four assists in four games) moves him to the top.
New entry

Liverpool - Ajax - €26.5m

Much to Ajax's disgust, the Uruguayan goal-getter has forced a January exit to Liverpool. With Fernando Torres leaving, landing a signing of Luis' calibre is just the tonic for the Anfield support. Every time Luis has stepped up to a new stage he has delivered quality in spades, and although going from the Eredivisie to the Premier League is a considerable jump, he can and will take it in stride.
New entry

Fernando TORRES
Chelsea - Liverpool - €58.5m

And the man who passed Suarez on his way out of Anfield comes in at third. One of the world's greatest forwards on his day, the only things keeping Fernando from the top spots are his recent form and fitness, as well as the monster fee. But we saw in Torres' early days at Liverpool that adaptation is not an issue, and soon he'll be both making and scoring chances.
Last week: 2

Manchester City - Wolfsburg - €32m

Dzeko's mammoth transfer fee is right now the only thing separating him from top spot. If he can hit the ground running, though, he could turn out to be one of the best success stories in Premier League transfer history. City are in the running for the league title, remember, and a(nother) top-class name up front is hardly going to hurt.
Last week: 3


Barcelona - PSV - €3m

The versatile Afellay will provide Barcelona's squad depth with a huge boost. He has plenty of experience despite his young age, and he should fit in easily into Barca's football philosophy. For a reported €3m fee, he comes very cheap, but how much he will play in the first team at the start remains to be seen. When he does, expect fireworks.
Last week: 4

Hoffenheim - Liverpool - 8m

A severely underrated player who, once he's given a run in the team to get back into the first-team swing of things, is going to set the Bundesliga alight. With the right support both on and off the pitch, Babel can verge on the world-class. Yet another coup signing for the German league.
Last week: 7


Inter - Sampdoria - €19m (-€7m player)

A fine part-exchange signing in the Italian tradition, Pazzini is only now truly hitting the big time at the age of 26. At a final valuation of €12m, all factors taken into account, his prior goalscoring record isn't actually incredible, but two goals on his debut and a raft of natural ability mean that Inter are going to get the best out of him. They have spotted a slow-burning talent who will offer plenty going forward.
Last week: 6

SIMAO Sabrosa
Besiktas - Atletico Madrid - €900k

The ambitious Turkish side will glady welcome an experienced, flamboyant winger who will give the team more attacking width and dimension. Even though he's already 31, the Portuguese still has great pace and dribbling skills and his set-piece deliveries are as sharp and potent as ever. This is a complete and utter bargain signing and thus makes the top 10 largely based on price.
New entry

David LUIZ
Chelsea - Benfica - €25m

The on-again, off-again saga ended with commanding defender David Luiz arriving at Stamford Bridge after all. Fans expecting instant results may be disappointed: Luiz has actually been somewhat off-form this season. But a lot of that was due to uncertainty in Portugal: given a bit of time and support in his new surroundings, the Brazilian could be a Stamford Bridge star for years and years to come.
New entry

Liverpool - Newcastle - €41m

Yes, yes, we know: it's absurd to see Andy Carroll as the world's seventh-most expensive footballer of all time. But, like Torres, one need balance his fee with his capabilities; and like Torres he still comes out looking very good. Similarly to Darren Bent his goalscoring record speaks for itself, but unlike Bent he's well and truly got time on his side. Risky, but the potential payoff is massive for Liverpool.