Transfer deadline day in the Premier League brought with it the usual flurry of social media panic, wild rumours of players in helicopters or airports and a whole bushel-load of panicking fans wondering whether their team would squeeze through the last signature in time.
For some, big-money permanent deals can mean an exciting couple of seasons ahead, but for others it might have been all about a key temporary signing; a loan deal in an important area who has the talent to get the team over the line and achieve their ambitions for the season, whether they be survival, European football or otherwise.
Here’s a look at the five best loan moves made by the Premier League clubs this January… West Ham’s Roger Johnson does not feature.
5. Lacina Traore, Monaco to Everton
Lanky striker Traore completed a move from Anzhi Makhachkala to AS Monaco midway through the January window, then was loaned straight out to Everton. A bit of a caveat about this choice as the Toffees have to get him fit first of all, but with Arouna Kone and now Romelu Lukaku both out with injuries themselves, Traore could suddenly be the man to lead the Everton attack as they chase a Champions League spot.
The Ivorian forward scored just one goal in five Russian Premier League games this year, but Anzhi’s summer firesale and complete collapse of the club essentially renders them a pub team in a professional league; they have’t won all season. Still, Traore won 44% of his headed duels and created four chances in his five games, an indication of where his threat lies.