Deadline day has been and gone – How will the new signings settle in?
This summer's transfer deadline day has again proved that while it may still have its detractors, the entertainment of watching last minute transfer dealings unfold is second to none.
Every summer, we see numerous clubs frantically rushing to send the relevant paperwork, complete medicals and seal the signature on the dotted line ahead of the 11pm deadline.
The Premier League's so-called 'big fish' again took to the stage as money was splashed about left, right and centre.
Queens Park Rangers demonstrated that, even though they are relative newcomers to the Premier League, they know how to sign cheques with frightening regularity.
Mark Hughes signed two further players on deadline day with Stephane Mbia joining from Marseille and Portsmouth's young defender Sam Magri signing a two-year contract at Loftus Road.
With Julio Cesar, Esteban Granero and Ji-sung Park departing from Inter Milan, Real Madrid and Manchester United earlier in the summer, owner Tony Fernandes has backed his manager and put his money where his mouth is.
While the quality of players at Loftus Road will certainly strike fear into many opponents, Hughes has the considerable challenge of turning his cosmopolitan squad into a gelled outfit.
Another worrying element of the QPR transfer policy, is the very real possibility that the club suffer a second poor season.
Throwing money onto the table is all well and good if the performances on the pitch reflect the investment.
If relegation appears on the horizon then Cesar and co could prove to be very expensive mistakes.
Tottenham effectively consigned Brad Friedel to a season on the bench with the signing of Lyon and French international goalkeeper Hugo Lloris for a reported £8m.
Top class goalkeepers seem to be a rarity at the moment and at this price, Spurs fans will feel they have snapped up a bargain.
However, there is a glaring gap in midfield with the failure to replace Luka Modric.
Joao Moutinho's on-off transfer kept both Andre Villas-Boas and Daniel Levy up until late in the night but there is a feeling that the club have missed a trick in not agreeing a deal.
Modric knitted the team together and Moutinho could have played a similar role.
Combined with the sale of Rafael van der Vaart to Hamburg SV, Spurs are now missing the guile and flair that proved so successful for most of last season.
Still, stealing Clint Dempsey from under the noses of Liverpool at least provided some consolation and fellow new boy Moussa Dembele may be dropped back into midfield on a regular basis.
The biggest spenders on deadline day were Manchester City as Roberto Mancini finally got his way.
A £16m deal for Benfica's Spanish international midfielder Javi Garcia (pictured) went through late in the day and he was joined by Fiorentina defender Matija Nastasic, who arrived at the Etihad with the underwhelming Stefan Savic travelling in the opposite direction to Florence.
Scott Sinclair and right back Maicon completed a busy day at the Etihad stadium.
Mancini had criticised the board earlier in the summer after missing out on top targets but the City squad is still tremendously strong and has competition of the highest order in every position.
One of the surprise movers of day were Fulham, who completed what could be one of the best pieces of business with the signing of Dimitar Berbatov.
At 31-years-old, the Bulgarian still has plenty to offer and played regularly under manager Martin Jol at Tottenham.
Losing both Dempsey and Dembele will have hurt Jol but in Berbatov, he has a striker who is proven at the very highest level.
Stoke manager Tony Pulis again showed his shrewdness in the market with the captures of Charlie Adam, Maurice Edu and Steven N'Zonzi to bolster an already strong midfield.
Adam is believed to have cost £5m and represents fantastic business. Let's not forget that a year ago, he cost Liverpool £9m and had pundits up and down the country praising his contribution to the Blackpool effort.
The signing of the Scottish international also shows that Pulis might be looking to move away from the so called 'long ball' game that has long been tagged to his charges.
Gaston Ramirez finally completed his switch to newly promoted Southampton in a club record £12m deal.
In terms of judging his potential impact, it is easy to look at the price tag and immediately declare him as bad business.
However, if he can settle into the league at a fair rate of knots and the Saints play a style of football that suits him, he could yet prove to be the darling of the south coast.
Countdown to January
So, the countdown to January has now begun and as the dust settles on deadline day, some managers may just be wondering where the summer has gone.
What is for sure is that over the next few months we will see brilliant skill, goals and goalkeeping from some of the plethora of new additions.
Unfortunately we will also witness flops, spills and big, whopping failures. That's the beauty of the panic stricken transfer window.
By Gary Peters
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