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Worst 8 January Deadline Day Signings Ever In Premier League History

Andrew Carroll

The January transfer window tends to be slow until deadline day, at which point all hell breaks loose.

Teams pushing for the title panic buy and those at the bottom grasp despairingly at whoever is available to help them in their quest to avoid the yawning chasm of death at the bottom of the Premier League.

We've seen some incredible deals go down on January deadline day, but who ended up being the absolute worst?

8. Louis Saha: Everton - Tottenham, Free, January 2012.

Louis Saha

Saha moved on a free transfer from Everton to Spurs on January deadline day in 2012. His appearance on this list is less to do with poor performance and more to do with the odd nature of the deal.

He was handed a six month contract upon joining the London club and actually played relatively well, scoring three goals in ten appearances.

He wasn't rewarded at the end of the season, despite singing the praises of the king of deadline day, Harry Redknapp, to whom he attributed his 'upturn' in form.

Saha joined Sunderland the following season, making only 11 appearances without a goal to his name before ending his career in 2013 with Lazio.

7. Felipe Caicedo: FC Basel - Manchester City, £5.2m, January 2008.

Felipe Caicedo

The Ecuadorian moved from FC Basel in a £5.2m deal and was immediately weighed down by expectation.

The 19-year-old was tipped to be a world class player, but never delivered on the promise he showed as a teenager, making his debut for the Swiss giants.

He made 27 appearances for City, scoring five goals and went on loan to Sporting Lisbon, Malaga and Levante.

Like many players that came to City under Shinawatra, Caicedo was more a victim of circumstance than a lack of ability as the club were just at the beginning of the evolution that has seen them to become one of English football's most threatening forces.

He left City for Lokomotiv Moscow in 2011 where he didn't fare much better until moving on, like many Premier League disappointments, to the middle east where he plays for Al-Jazira.

6. Eric Djemba-Djemba: Manchester United - Aston Villa, £1.5m, January 2005.

Eric Djemba-Djemba

No worst transfers list would be complete without the man so bad they named him twice. Eric Djemba-Djemba is widely regarded as one of the worst players ever purchased by Sir Alex Ferguson during his time at Manchester United. Which makes it all the more incredible that the Cameroonian managed to appear for another Premier League Club.

He moved after a disappointing two years at Old Trafford for £1.5 million, but immediately found it difficult to break into the side with David O'Leary preferring Gavin McCann and Steven Davis in centre midfield.

When Martin O'Neill took over at Villa Park, Djemba-Djemba only managed one appearance before being shipped out on loan to Burnley for the remainder of the 06-07 season.

Djemba-Djemba moved away from England and has since played across the world for a variety of clubs, most recently for Partizan, before his contract was terminated.

5. Benjani Mwaruwari: Portsmouth - Manchester City, £3.87m, January 2008.

Benjani Mwaruwari

In June 2007, Thaksin Shinawatra purchased Manchester City and brought with him funds that the club had never even dreamt of. They proceeded to spend money like a twelve year who'd just won the Euro-Millions after a Coca-Cola binge.

Players with reputations of any note were brought to the club with seemingly no transfer strategy as City attempted to play with the big boys by buying everyone.

Robinho arrived in the summer for £33m with little more than a fantastic reputation and it appeared that Sven Goran Eriksson would continue that with his purchase of Portsmouth favourite Benjani.

He was the wrong player at the wrong time and was clearly out of his depth playing alongside Robinho. After making only 23 appearances in two years for the Citizens, the Zimbabwean only managed four goals.

Notably, one of these was the winner in the Manchester derby, but like so many before and after him, Benjani just wasn't good enough for City.

He moved on to Blackburn and recently appeared again for Portsmouth in the Championship. He now plays for Chippa United in South Africa.

4. Hossam Ghaly: Feyenoord - Tottenham, £2.5m, January 2006.

Hossam Ghaly

Ghaly arrived at White Hart Lane, riding the crest of a wave of optimism at Spurs as youngsters Aaron Lennon and Tom Huddlestone had started to impress for the first team after joining the club from Leeds and Derby respectively. The Egyptian winger joined Spurs after three troubled seasons with Feyenoord.

He started his Tottenham career relatively well, scoring his first goal in the UEFA Cup against Besiktas, but it was in a Premier League game against Blackburn that his career in England began to unravel.

After being brought on in the first half after an injury to Steed Malbranque, he was substituted in the second half. On his way off the pitch, Ghaly took off his shirt and threw it into the turf on the sideline, walking past Martin Jol without so much as a look.

Ghaly’s Spurs career ended that night and he was never to appear for Tottenham again. Harry Redknapp decided against using him as a substitute in an FA cup tie against Wigan due to the reaction of the crowd upon seeing him warming up. A loan move to Derby County failed to revive his dying career in England and he moved back to the Middle East and is now plying his trade in the Belgian League with Lierse SK.

3. Afonso Alves: SC Heerenveen - Middlesbrough, £12.5m, January 2008.

Afonso Alves

While at Heerenveen, Alves had a better than one goal-a-game ratio, scoring 45 goals in 39 appearances for the Dutch club. This proved to be a flash in the pan from the Brazilian as he went on to join the ranks of flops that have joined from the Eredivisie as clubs searched for the next van Nistelrooy, van Persie and Suarez.

Alvez had been tipped as the next Adriano and has eight caps for the Brazilian national side, scoring his solitary goal for the Selecao in a friendly against Mexico.

The big Brazilian went on to make 42 appearances for Boro, with a return of only 10 goals and was quickly shipped out to the footballer’s pay-day paradise - the Emirates. His career has never really recovered from his experience at the Riverside where he retains the club record of highest transfer fee paid.

2. Fernando Torres: Liverpool - Chelsea, £50m, January 2011.

Fernando Torres

In January 2011, Fernando Torres was clearly not the same player he had been in his first few seasons at Anfield. After playing through a clearly not fully recovered knee injury, Torres had lost a bit of his spark and was nowhere near the predator of a frontman that he once was. Despite Roy Hodgson assuring the Liverpool faithful that Torres would be going nowhere, the current England manager was sacked and replaced by Kenny Dalglish on the 8th of January.

After a £40m bid was rejected by the club, Torres handed in an official transfer request and eventually transferred to Chelsea for £50m, a record fee for the transfer of a player between British clubs. His moved also paved the way for the number one worst January deadline day deal to occur.

Torres went almost four months without scoring a goal for the Blues and was frequently left on the bench in favour of Didier Drogba. He has yet to find any real form since joining the west London club and in three years at Chelsea has only scored 19 goals, five off his highest tally for the Reds in his debut season. Were it not for a crucial goal away against Barcelona that sent Chelsea to the final of the Champions League in 2012, he would have provided very little of note to the Blues since that fateful 50m move.

1. Andy Carroll: Newcastle United - Liverpool, £35m, January 2011.

Andy Carroll

Kenny Dalglish was on the verge of losing the gifted Fernando Torres for a cool £50m pounds and was in the market for a replacement. Inexplicably, he turned to Newcastle’s Andy Carroll to replace the natural finishing instinct of Torres.

Newcastle had only recently returned to the Premier League after a season which had seen Carroll form a towering partnership with Peter Lovenkrands. Carroll only got his chance when relegation meant the departure Michael Owen, Mark Viduka and Obafemi Martins.

When Liverpool came calling, Carroll had only played half of a season in the Premier League in a Newcastle side not known for it’s fluid attacking play. Admittedly, he had made a mark on the Premier League, but was far from the world class striker that Liverpool fans had to come to expect.

After moving to Merseyside, Carroll looked out of his depth and the massive transfer fee seemed to weigh heavily on the big striker. A loan spell at West Ham led to a permanent deal in East London where he has spent most of this season on the sidelines. Out of the England squad and out of form, he has never really recovered from his horrific spell at Anfield.

Source: FTBpro

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