5 emotional goodbyes of the winter transfer window
Its been yet another crazy window of transfer merry-go-rounds with some eye-popping deals being sealed and delivered in January.
We've seen Coutinho make his long-awaited, and inevitable, £142 million move to Barcelona. Jurgen Klopp broke the world record for a defender with his £75 million move for Virgil van Dijk.
Alexis Sanchez has finally left Arsenal, leaving Mkhitaryan free to go the other way, a move that set off a series of striker-exchanges between Arsenal, Dortmund, and Chelsea.
Wenger broke his club record to sign Aubameyang for £56 million, allowing Giroud to leave for Chelsea for £18 million, which meant that Dortmund took Batshuayi off of Conte's hands in a loan move till the end of the season.
It's fair to say that it has been one hell of a month. Unfortunately, it means that several other moves that would have otherwise been the center of attention have gone off the radar. Winter usually doesn't see a lot of emotional goodbyes, but we've had quite a few this time around that are worth revisiting.
#5 Francis Coquelin (Arsenal to Valencia)
With the very high profile arrival of Aubameyang, the Sanchez-Mkhitaryan swap deal and Ozil's contract renewal till 2021, Valencia's signing of Coquelin went unnoticed.
The Frenchman has been with Arsenal for almost 10 years, having joined them in 2008 as a 16-year-old. He spent loan spells at Lorient, Freiburg and Charlton Athletic before finally breaking into the first team in 2014.
Even though he's not always been the first choice since then, Coquelin has been one of Arsenal's most loyal and passionate players, winning 2 FA Cups and the Community Shield in 2015.
His performances eventually convinced Wenger to hand him a new long-term deal in January 2017. But this season, Wilshere, Ramsey, and Xhaka have been ahead of him in the pecking order, and at the age of 26, Coquelin is nearing his peak.
In the current inflated market, Valencia has gotten themselves a good deal at £12 million. It would have no doubt been difficult for Coquelin himself to make the move, but its come at the right time in his career.