Deadline day is a term used in football as one of the most nerve-wracking moments of a transfer window. Several clubs make every effort to get last-minute transactions in order to bolster their squads and accomplish their season’s objectives. The same may be said for players who are looking for new teams to join in the hopes of rejuvenating their careers.
Unlike the summer season, the January transfer window has proven quite straightforward on several occasions. Several high-profile moves occurred during this time, though not recently. Many players, including Philippe Coutinho, Virgil van Dijk, Fernando Torres, and others, switched clubs in January.
● Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Many stunning goals have been scored by Ibrahimovic over his illustrious career. But no one could forget the goal he scored in his farewell game against Ajax. Zlatan received the ball in the opposition’s half and used a series of feints and fake spins to dribble towards the goal. He sat back defenders and slammed it past the goalkeeper. This goal piqued Juventus’ interest, and Zlatan moved on deadline day in 2004.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic is widely considered to be one of the best players of his age. He had a fantastic debut season at Juventus, scoring goals and winning the Scudetto. As the seasons went on, he was relegated to the role of wide forward, and his goal totals plummeted.
● Wayne Rooney
Manchester United outbid Chelsea for Wayne Rooney on the final day of the 2004 transfer window, paying €39 million for the striker.
Sir Alex Ferguson conceded that the deal aroused some concerns, but Rooney quickly dispelled any misgivings. He scored a hat-trick and added an assist on his Champions League debut against Fenerbahce. It was going to be the start of a long and mostly happy relationship.
He may not have owned every record at Old Trafford, but he did hold a lot of them. With 253 goals in 559 games, he surpassed Dennis Law and Bobby Charlton to become the club’s all-time greatest scorer.
● Luis Suarez
Suarez’s signing was one of the best in Liverpool’s history, and it came at a time when the club was making a lot of terrible ones. In four seasons on Merseyside, the Uruguayan scored 82 goals in 133 appearances, earning him cult hero status and allowing Liverpool fans to quickly move on from Fernando Torres.
While he couldn’t quite lead Liverpool to the title – they came close in Suarez’s final season of 2013/14 – he did help them win the League Cup in 2012 and garner a slew of individual awards, including Liverpool Player of the Season twice and PFA Player of the Year in 2014.
Liverpool made a tidy profit in the area of £42 million from his final transfer to Barcelona.
● Mesut Ozil
Mesut Ozil’s Arsenal career may have ended on a sour note when he was curiously allowed to depart on a free transfer to Fenerbahce, but he remains one of the best creative number tens the Premier League has seen in the last 15 years.
When it comes to scoring goals, Ozil’s grace and laid-back demeanour have led to allegations of sloth throughout the years, but the German’s number cannot be overlooked.
In 268 games for the Gunners, he assisted on 77 goals and scored 44 himself, totalling well over 100 goals.
● Sergio Ramos
In 2005, Sergio Ramos joined Real Madrid on the final day of the transfer deadline. The teenage defender later went on to become Spain’s most expensive defender. Ramos, a right defender at the time, was expected to be a big hit in Madrid. But, much to everyone’s amazement, something unexpected came out of this decision.
Ramos became one of the best centre-backs in the history of the game after being converted to the position at Santiago Bernabeu. He was not only a renowned defender but also a leader on the field, having captained Real Madrid to several titles. With the Los Blancos, he won four Champions Leagues and is best remembered for his La Decima-winning equaliser against Atletico Madrid.