It’s that time of year again. A time when clubs will have already endured a fixture crammed December and look forward to the beginning of the FA Cup. A time when Jack Frost decides which games he wants to cancel through poor whether conditions. A time when clubs have one final opportunity to dip into their kitty for that final push for success.
The January transfer window always seems to provide some much needed transfer shocks and this seasons will hopefully be no different. Lets take a look at this years top five potential shocks…
1. Sergio Aquero – Athletico Madrid to Chelsea (30m-35m)
Argentina striker Sergio Aquero has been a Chelsea transfer target for quite some time. His natural ability and passion for scoring goals has made him one of the worlds hottest properties and the fact that his current club Athletico Madrid are now out of the Champions League might make this dream move a reality.
Chelsea have had their recent transfer ban lifted and will be without Didier Drogba for a month whilst the Ivory Coast international is away at the African Nations Cup, so a record breaking move for Aquero could be just what the London club need to boost their Premier League credentials.
2. Ruud Van Nistelrooy and/or Van der Vaart – Real Madrid to Liverpool (loan)
Liverpool have made a disastrous start to their 2009/10 campaign. After last seasons success taking champions Manchester United all the way to the wire, Rafa Benitez’s side have somewhat stumbled and find themselves out of the title race by the new year with no Champions League knockout stage to look forward to.
Former Manchester United striker Van Nistelrooy, whose contract expires in the summer, is becoming fed up with a lack of first team opportunities in Spain and a move to Liverpool would provide much needed cover for Fernando Torres.
Fellow Dutchman Van der Vaart has also been deemed surplus to requirements at Real Madrid and would very much welcome a move to the Premier League whilst Liverpool have also been heavily linked with a move for former striker Emile Heskey.
3. David James – Portsmouth to Tottenham (1m-2m)
Former England one is currently unhappy with life at Fratton Park and who can blame him. Two years ago he was part of a Portsmouth side that won the FA Cup, now with most of that squad gone, he is part of a sinking ship, not getting paid and staring relegation in the face.
A move away from Pompey would surely benefit James, who is currently enjoying a good spell during the twilight of his career and a switch to Tottenham will no doubt increase his chances of becoming Fabio Capello’s number one at this years World Cup.
4. Robbie Keane – Tottenham to Celtic (Loan)
Republic of Ireland captain Robbie Keane has found himself somewhat disillusioned since his return to White Hart Lane in last years January transfer window after a short stint at Liverpool and the offer of first team football from Glasgow giants Celtic may be too good to turn down.
The arrival of England strikers Jermain Defoe and Peter Crouch have moved Ireland’s all time record goal scorer down Harry Redknapp’s pecking order at Tottenham and now a move to Scotland or indeed another Premier League outfit is very much on the cards.
5. Matt Upson – West Ham to Manchester City, Liverpool or Tottenham (10m)
Given West Ham’s current precarious position in the premier League, you can forgive the England international for wanting to jump ship and make the much needed step up to firmly cement his position among Fabio Capello’s 23-man World Cup squad.
Upson’s contract is due to expire this summer and West Ham will want to cash in to salvage their current financial situation. Manchester City will see Upson as a solution to their season long defensive crisis, Rafa Benitez has always been a huge admirer and Tottenham have also declared a string interest.
The best of the rest…
Roberto Mancini and Sir Alex Ferguson look set to do battle for the signature of Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini, Birmingham are keen to end Ryan Babel’s Liverpool hell and a host of Premier League clubs are keen to sign Scott Parker and Middlesbrough’s Adam Johnson.