The most expensive January deadline day signings ever

There is simply no day more exciting in the football calendar than transfer deadline day.

Clubs frantically trying to get last-minute deals over the line, players driving hopelessly up and down the country and sitting outside training grounds in the hope that a move goes through - yes, we're looking at you, Peter Odemwingie - and reporters being crowded by rabid fans as the night draws in and the clock ticks down.

Of course, part of that entertainment factor has disappeared in the wake of the pandemic, but there's still fun to be had. Forcing through deals at the death isn't always a safe option, and might not always be cost effective.

Grab your most obnoxiously yellow items of clothing and practice your best Jim White impression - 90min has pulled together the most expensive signings that have been completed in the history of the January transfer window's deadline day.

23. Nemanja Vidic - £7m

Captains don't come like Nemanja Vidic anymore | ANDREW YATES/Getty Images

Despite pursuing him heavily after a solid showing during 2006 World Cup qualification fixtures, Manchester United almost lost out on Spartak Moscow defender Nemanja Vidic to Fiorentina in January 2006.

They successfully hijacked the deal, though, and completed the transfer. Five Premier League titles and a Champions League win, he did alright, didn't he?

22. Oumar Niasse - £13.5m

A move to England hasn't quite gone as planned for Niasse | Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images

Oumar Niasse followed up a late, £13.5m arrival at Goodison Park from Lokomotiv Moscow with 152 minutes of disappointing football in his first season.

It resulted in him not actually being given a squad number for the following campaign in 2016/17, just months after joining.

21. Manolo Gabbiadini - £14m

Gabbiadini's impact was instant at Southampton | Alex Livesey/Getty Images

After signing on deadline day from Napoli in winter 2017, Manolo Gabbiadini went on a streak for Southampton and bagged five goals in his first three games.

Two of which came at Wembley in the Carabao Cup final, which were almost enough to see them past Manchester United.

20. Andrey Arshavin - £15m

Arshavin was worth it just for this moment | Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Despite pursuing the Russian for the entire transfer window in January 2009 and literally having him sat in a hotel on deadline day, it took Arsenal until inside the final hour of the window to complete the deal for Andrey Arshavin with Zenit.

Name something more Arsenal.

19. Jonny Otto - £15m

Jonny Otto - Atletico legend | Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images

Technically, Jonny signed for Wolves in the summer of 2018 after joining from Atletico Madrid, but that deal was initially a loan, and wasn't made permanent until deadline day in January 2019. He had never played a game for Atleti.

18. Salomon Rondon - £15.8m

Rondon ripped it up in Russia before heading for England | Epsilon/Getty Images

Zenit managed to pry Salomon Rondon away from fellow Russian side Rubin Kazan at the death of the transfer window in 2014, but only enjoyed his service for 18 months before selling him at a loss to West Brom.

17. Hernanes - £16m

Hernanes? Yes. High shirt numbers? Absolutely not. | Marco Luzzani/Getty Images

Fans were furious when Lazio sanctioned the sale of their star midfielder Hernanes to Inter in 2014, considering they were direct rivals in the league.

The Brazilian only spent 18 months with the Nerrazzuri, however, before moving on again to Juventus.

16. Andre Ayew - £18m

Ayew is now back at Swansea again after a sabbatical with Fenerbahce | Ben Early - AMA/Getty Images

Just shy of two years after leaving Swansea for West Ham in a club-record fee for the Irons, Andre Ayew returned to south Wales for an £18m fee in 2018, but was gone again by summer on loan to Fenerbahce.

15. Olivier Giroud - £18m

Olivier Giroud; great striker, even better quiff | Chloe Knott - Danehouse/Getty Images

Chelsea snatching away Olivier Giroud from Arsenal in 2018 on deadline day is arguably one of the most underrated pieces of business in recent times.

Despite being 34, he still looks a better option than Timo Werner.

14. Giannelli Imbula - £18.3m

Remember Giannelli Imbula? Nah, neither do we. | James Baylis - AMA/Getty Images

Stoke paid a club-record fee to bring Giannelli Imbula to the club from FC Porto at the death in 2016, but he never found his feet and was caught up in a cycle of loans by 2017.

13. Mario Balotelli - £19m

Mario Balotelli - allergic to grass. | Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images

There is slight uncertainty over the actual fee that Milan paid for Balotelli in 2013, but it was around the £19m mark.

His time at the Rossoneri proved to be his last truly impressive spell at the top level.

12. Odion Ighalo - £20m

Ighalo's time in China has been a successful one | STR/Getty Images

After bursting onto the scene in the Premier League with Watford, there was plenty of interest in Odion Ighalo in the mid-2010s.

He rebuffed it all, however, and headed to China in 2017 to sign for Changchun Yatai.

11. Miguel Almiron - £21m

Miguel Almiron still hasn't fully been unlocked at Newcastle | Pool/Getty Images

Miguel Almiron's 2019 move to Newcastle from Atlanta United remains the highest fee ever paid for a player from the MLS to date.

For all the money, though, Steve Bruce will never quite know what to do with him.

10. David Luiz - £21m

Luiz has enjoyed two solid spells with Chelsea | GLYN KIRK/Getty Images

When David Luiz joined Chelsea from Benfica for the first time in 2011, a certain Nemanja Matic was also included in the deal to get it over the line.

Matic would eventually return, and the pair would win a Premier League together.

9. Luis Suarez - £22.7m

Find a better picture - we'll wait | Alex Livesey/Getty Images

While the signing of Andy Carroll was the more memorable deadline day acquisition for Liverpool in 2011, it was Luis Suarez who arrived from Ajax (for the cheaper fee(!)) who would go on to achieve greatness.

8. Lucas Moura - £25m

Moura has been a shrewd addition to Spurs | Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

After five years in the French capital, Lucas Moura swapped winning silverware for fun for a fresh start in north London in 2018.

His performances took them to a Champions League final in 2019, but that's as good as it's got so far.

7. Andre Schurrle - £22m

Schurrle is now retired | Catherine Ivill - AMA/Getty Images

Officially, Andre Schurrle's move from Chelsea to Wolfsburg in 2015 was completed on 2 February, but we'll let it slide.

Despite only being 30, the German is retired having fallen out of love with the game.

6. Juan Cuadrado - £26.8m

Cuadrado's spell at Chelsea was very short-lived | Clive Rose/Getty Images

You'd be forgiven for forgetting that Juan Cuadrado signed for Chelsea from Fiorentina in 2015, because he was straight out of the door again come the summer window.

5. Willian - £30m

Willian playing for Anzhi Mackhachkala | Epsilon/Getty Images

Before the days of Willian in the Premier League, his talent at Shakhtar Donetsk had already been spotted by a billionaire-backed Anzhi Makhachkala - remember them?

Their rise and fall coincided with the Brazilian jumping ship to Chelsea in 2014.

4. Jackson Martinez - £32m

Martinez is now retired | Aitor Alcalde Colomer/Getty Images

Jackson Martinez ended a disappointing spell at Atletico Madrid in early February 2016 when he headed to Guangzhou Evergrande before the deadline, setting a then-record fee for a transfer by an Asian club.

3. Andy Carroll - £35m

The striker partnership football needs, but doesn't deserve | Scott Heavey/Getty Images

One of two men tasked with replacing Fernando Torres upon his departure to Chelsea, Andy Carroll only came close to replicating the Spaniard in the hair department.

Great hair, not so great a Liverpool career.

2. Fernando Torres - £50m

Torres never found full stride at Chelsea | Clive Rose/Getty Images

Despite setting a record with the transfer fee and arriving after years of lighting up the Premier League at Liverpool, Fernando Torres' legacy at Chelsea was a one of a big-money flop.

He did, however, score a famous Champions League semi-final goal at the Camp Nou and lifted the trophy in 2012.

1. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang - £56m

Joking aside, where would Arsenal have been without Aubameyang in recent times? | Visionhaus/Getty Images

Aubama-who, Aubama-what?

Aubama-ouch, he cost quite a lot actually, didn't he? Was it worth renewing his contract?

The Gabon international and Arsenal captain joined the Gunners from Borussia Dortmund in 2018.

Source : 90min