It is at times hard to quantify the importance a player will make in the long run for a club. At times what would be a rather inconspicuous signing for one club might be just what another club really had needed and make his move much more significant than he might have been elsewhere.
In that same frame of mind a loan signings versus a five-year deal could equally be just as impressive or important to a club depending on where they stand in the grand scheme of things and as to what they truly need.
With that all in mind, let us take a look at the top five transfer deadline day deals in the English Premier League.
Mesut Ozil to Arsenal
While it was a long and drawn out summer for Arsenal fans, they can rest assured that on paper they signed a major playmaker in the form of German International attacking midfielder, Mesut Ozil.
In La Liga with Real Madrid last season, Ozil created 91 chances resulting in 78 key passes and 13 assists for the 24-year-old making him one of the top ten most effective midfielders in Europe last season. His 84 percent passing rate was among the highest for Madrid, and although it is slightly lower than last season’s numbers for Arsenal stars Mikel Arteta, Santi Cazorla and Aaron Ramsey, his overall creativity will be a major plus.
Arsenal needed a signing of intent and the major cash splashed on Ozil will make him appear as such and is a type of playmaker that the club truly need.
Romelu Lukaku to Everton
Last season Steve Clark won the loan signing lottery with Lukaku joining West Bromwich Albion for the entirety of the 2012-13 campaign. The young Belgian powerhouse forward scored 17 goals for the Baggies last season and was the highest scoring player under the age of 20 in years.
Having turned 20 at the end point of last season, the big Belgian continues to look better and better as he gets old and his deceptive speed is just another dangerous quality to his power in the air and on the ball.
Everton have needed a target forward for some time as Nikica Jelovic just is not getting things done up front. Although the loss of Marouane Fellaini will be significant, the arrival of Lukaku will do much to help ease that burden for at least this campaign.
Mamadou Sakho to Liverpool
Liverpool have been desperate to acquire a fourth top class defender to enter the competitive ranks of Daniel Agger, Martin Skrtel and Kolo Toure and have certainly gotten just that in 23-year-old French international Mamadou Sakho.
Recently coming off a French Ligue 1 title with Paris Saint Germain, the defender has been a crucial first team player in one of the world’s biggest cities since he was 18 years of age. Having captained at every level of France’s junior sides, he is likely a future captain of the senior French national team.
An all-around defender that is primarily a center half, Sakho can also deputize as a fullback if necessary and has been long praised for his tireless work rate, physicality, tackling ability and leadership qualities. His move to Anfield gives Liverpool arguably the best defense in the Premier League.
Marouane Fellaini to Manchester United
David Moyes has been looking for the signing to put his mark on Manchester United and looks to have done so with the arrival of his former Everton charge, Marouane Fellaini. The big-haired Belgian brings a towering presence to the United midfield and he is certain to aid in the club’s attacking options both in open play and from set pieces.
Fellaini scored 12 goals for Everton last season and Moyes will hope he can get that type of return from the 25-year-old this campaign as well as the club has struggled to score in their last two outings against Chelsea and Liverpool.
It will be interesting to see how the arrival of Fellaini plays into the futures of Shinji Kagawa, Anderson as well as potentially Wayne Rooney, whom has been used primarily as an attacking midfielder in support of Robin Van Persie and Danny Welbeck. Will the giant midfielder play in the supporting roll or will he drop back closer to Michael Carrick? All questions to be answered in due time.
Gareth Barry to Everton
England international defensive midfielder Gareth Barry has been one of the most consistent midfielders in the Premier League over the better part of the last decade. A star for Aston Villa, Barry then became a rock in midfielder for Manchester City until the arrival of Fernandinho this season looks to have ended his future under Manuel Pellegrini.
The loss of Marouane Fellaini to Manchester United sees the Toffees need to rearrange their formation and allow newly arrived youngster James McCarthy to form a strong attacking midfield partnership with Ross Barkley.
Barry’s experience will provide valuable cover in midfield so that Barkley and McCarthy can have some room for error. Leon Osman has been strong in a deeper midfield role this season, but he is more well suited to pushing play forward and playing through from the flanks.
Barry is certain to be a very valuable new addition to the Toffees for the coming campaign and he is likely to be a galvanizing force in the club’s central midfield throughout the year.
Other significant EPL Deadline Day Deals
Fabio Borini loan to Sunderland from Liverpool
James McCarthy to Everton from Wigan Athletic
Stephane Sessegnon to West Brom from Sunderland
Tiago Ilori to Liverpool from Sporting
Barry Bannan to Crystal Palace from Aston Villa