WhoScored Rate The Late Arrivals...

It was a cracking deadline day for Man United, while Arsenal could get more out of Danny Welbeck if they play him as a striker. Here's WhoScored with the best deals...

Last Updated: 04/09/14 at 09:41 Post Comment

Latest Articles

The PL's Most Improved Defences

Post comment

Southampton top the list but perhaps it's Aston Villa who should get most credit. Their defence is the reason why they are sitting comfortably in mid-table...

Football Managers On TV: Sam Allardyce

8 comments

Garrulous, uncompromising, always fighting his corner, but not without charm if the mood takes him. Sam Allardyce is the Premier League's classic Proper Football Man...

All Articles

Transfer deadline day was as hectic as ever and, as has become the norm, the deadline didn't really serve as a deadline. Arguably the two most eye-catching deals were in fact completed after the 11pm closing time, with Radamel Falcao securing an initial loan deal to Manchester United and Danny Welbeck heading to Arsenal. WhoScored.com look at a handful of the most intriguing deals secured on the last day of the window, starting with these two late transfers.

Manchester United's start under Louis van Gaal has been abysmal. There's no two ways about it. After a promising pre-season campaign the players now look completely lost in what is an experimental system from the Dutch coach, who only began training the Netherlands in their adopted 3-4-1-2 formation earlier this year.

In theory it's a set up that should accommodate many attacking talents but United have looked relatively toothless up front, not to mention spineless at the back. Step forward El Tigre, who joins an already top-heavy squad that boasts the likes of Juan Mata, Angel Di Maria, Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie. It's the latter that could easily see his playing time diminish following the Colombian's arrival, despite captaining Van Gaal's Oranje in the summer.

There is no question that Falcao would add quality to any team in the world, so for a side that won't be competing in Europe this season it's one hell of a statement. Having acquired two of Europe's finest playmakers in the last eight months - Mata and Di Maria have amassed 89 league assists combined over the past four seasons - Falcao, who has netted 63 league goals since a move to Atletico Madrid in 2011, should be in his element. Firepower is not something that United are in short supply of, though the ability to put them out at the other end remains a very real concern.

The plethora of options now available to Van Gaal led to Welbeck becoming surplus to requirements under the new regime, with Arsenal more than happy to take advantage of the England international's availability. Some have questioned whether the transfer fee, in the region of £16m, is too high for a player that hasn't been prolific by any means, but with Giroud set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines the Gunners certainly needed reinforcements.

Still only 23, Welbeck's signs of improvement were encouraging last season, with the versatile forward developing physically as much as technically. His tally of nine league goals matched his efforts from the 2011/12 campaign and came from only 15 starts in 25 top-flight appearances.

His ability to play out of position on the wing has been both a blessing and a curse. Welbeck has averaged a league goal every 2.2 games when starting as a centre-forward since the start of the 2009 season compared to every seven games in any other position. His conversion rate last season, meanwhile, was bettered only by Aaron Ramsey of those with ten or more appearances at Arsenal.

Another forward on the move on deadline day was Abel Hernandez, whose switch to Hull was regarded as a surprise by some given the early potential he had shown at Palermo. It's potential that he's yet to really fulfil in all honesty, with Hull's record transfer outlay certainly representing a bargain.

In four seasons in Serie A with Palermo, between 2009 and 2013, Hernandez made just 42 starts. It's telling that his best season from a goalscoring perspective came in the first of those campaigns when he netted seven times as a teenager in 2009/10. A tally of 14 in Serie B last year was perhaps rather modest for a team that topped the table comfortably and, if Hernandez's WhoScored.com characteristics are anything to go by - with finishing, offside awareness and passing all weaknesses - the excitement surrounding his arrival could yet be short-lived.

It would have been peculiar had Spurs not signed yet another central midfielder during the transfer window, and they duly obliged with the acquisition of Benjamin Stambouli, who can also play at centre-back. His arrival paved the way for Sandro's exit, a decision bemoaned by a number of Tottenham fans, and it remains to be seen whether the young Frenchman will be an upgrade. It's worth noting that the 24-year-old didn't pick up nearly as many admirers as Etienne Capoue during his spell in Ligue 1.

The former Montpellier man is a strong tackler, averaging 3.1 per game last season (more than any player at Spurs), keeps possession well and would be a good option as the sitting midfielder in Mauricio Pochettino's side. He's yet to receive a senior international cap, but his progression should encourage Spurs supporters, with Stambouli's rating from WhoScored.com increasing in each of the last five seasons, at a respectable high of 7.05 in 2013/14.

Sunderland's capture of Argentine international Ricardo Alvarez - a loan with an option to buy from Internazionale - was another of the more eye-catching on Monday. The Black Cats are one of very few clubs willing to buy from Serie A, but have acquired a player of quality in the 26-year-old. Alvarez is very strong at dribbling according to WhoScored's characteristics; they don't call him 'Tricky Ricky' for nothing.

Only four players completed more dribbles per game in Serie A last season (2.7), but Alvarez isn't just a luxury player. The other area in which the versatile midfielder is deemed 'very strong' is in defensive contribution, with Alvarez averaging 2.5 tackles per game from a predominantly advanced position last season. Meanwhile, no Inter player made as many assists (eight) so his availability may have surprised some and it was a shrewd move on Sunderland's part to capture his services.

Martin Laurence - follow him on Twitter.

All statistics courtesy of WhoScored.com, where you can find yet more stats, including live in-game data and unique player and team ratings.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

really enjoyed this. Thanks F365 for another year of work avoidance - happy Christmas.

megabrow (cufc)
Our Person Of The Year: Alan Pardew

I

m no Sam Fan and this article sums him up beautifully. I always like to imagine that when he watches anything on TV and hears clapping, he stands up and aknowledges the applause, thinking its for him!

cozens
Football Managers On TV: Sam Allardyce

N

ah, Fergie is just having another pop at Rooney. He just wants to put him down whenever he gets a chance. Rooney is by far the best English player. Carrick is not far behind, mind. However, by elevating Carrick like that, Sir is having a dig at Wayne. Fergie is well-known for mind games like that. Good to see he's still feisty.

timbo
Van Gaal will thrive - Ferguson

Latest Photos

Footer 365

Premier League: QPR look for result against Arsenal, Rio Ferdinand in selection contention

QPR boss Harry Redknapp says Rio Ferdinand could be back in the team as the squad is rotated through the festive period.

Premier League: Nemanja Matic says Chelsea can win quadruple

Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic insists the Blues can win the quadruple this season.

Premier League: Ronald Koeman facing selection crisis ahead of Southampton's match against Everton

Harrison Reed's impressive display against Everton has given Ronald Koeman a selection dilemma.

Mail Box

Van Gaal's Half-Term Report Card...

One Man United fan isn't happy with the rate the team is progressing under Louis van Gaal, while the mailbox also wishes Liverpool fans a Merry Mid-Table Christmas...

Hang On, Rafa's Success Is No Fluke...

The afternoon mailbox kicks the morning mailbox's arse after claims that Rafa Benitez has fluked his success. Plus, big talk about Liverpool's progress and lots more...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property