Football Italiano’s 500@five – The best winter deals

The January transfer window closed yesterday and Serie A saw its fair share of last minute deals taking place. Fiorentina were surprisingly the biggest impact makers in the transfer market this year. La Viola saw some major arrivals as well as its fair share of departures as the team geared itself for a lengthy run in Europe. Enrico Preziosi’s Genoa was also in on the act as there was a fair bit of movement at the Rossoblu. The biggest acquisition by any of the top four teams was Luca Toni’s arrival in Rome. Amantino Mancini switched from the blue half of Milan to the red half, while Juventus despite their troubles stayed sober throughout the transfer window. So which were the best transfers during January?

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5. David Suazo to Genoa

The Honduran joined Genoa on loan till the end of the season after struggling to get any first-team football at Inter. He scored on his debut against Milan and has featured consistently in the side since January. Suazo is a talented player and finally has a platform to express his qualities. He will also be looking to impress future employers during his stint in Genoa.

4. Thomas Hitzlsperger to Lazio

Hitzlsperger has been an integral part of the German national team in the last few years and a player of his calibre gives the Biancocelesti some much needed quality in the middle of the park. The last minute deal with Stuttgart sees him move to the capital for free having terminated his contract. ‘Der Hammer’ can play on the left side or through the center and his powerful long-range shooting will be invaluable to Coach Davide Ballardini.

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3. Hernán Crespo to Parma

The Argentine returned to the club that shot him to fame in the 90s. Crespo led Parma to a UEFA Cup and a Coppa Italia and his return to Francecso Guidolin’s side could prove to be a masterstroke. Crespo may have lost his pace but his predatory skills are still very much intact. Parma have encountered a slump in form in recent weeks having lost four of their last five games need to get back on track immediately and Crespo will no doubt make things easier.

2. Luca Toni to Roma

Toni and Roma are almost tailor-made for each other. The ever improving Roma side needed someone who could hold the ball upfront and Toni provides the perfect foil to do the same. The Italian is looking to impress Marcello Lippi before the World Cup and that can only bode well for the Giallorossi. Unfortunately for Toni and Roma the striker picked up an injury against Juventus that has ruled him out for up to six weeks. Nonetheless as long as Toni stays fit he will prove to be an asset to the squad.

1. Goran Pandev to Inter

Quite possibly the best bit of business any club around Europe did in the winter. Inter got hold of the extremely gifted Macedonian for nothing as the courts rescinded Pandev’s contract with Lazio. Pandev has been in great form since joining the Nerazzurri and his versatility provides José Mourinho with diverse options in attack. Samuel Eto’o, who has returned to the team after the African Cup of Nations, will not have an easy task getting back into the first-team.

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