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The January transfer window may be notoriously difficult to conduct business – but some clubs have made it look easy.

It was only in last year’s winter market that Premier League teams splashed out a record £815million on new signings.

Virgil van Dijk and Luis Suarez were great and Chelsea have also won – here’s my greatest ever January transfers

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Liverpool hit the jackpot when they signed Luis Suarez in January 2012Credit: Getty

With transfer fees inflated and teams often failing to get their money’s worth, the January window has always been a gamble.

But for Chelsea, Manchester United and especially Liverpool, some of their finest players have come through the doors midway through the season.

And they have shown you don’t need to break the bank in order to assemble a title-challenging side.

From Bruno Fernandes to Nemanja Vidic to Nemanja Matic and David Luiz, the English top-flight has seen some wonderful players arrive.

It’s hard to pick the best winter signings in Premier League history, but that is exactly what talkSPORT’s very own Gabby Agbonlahor has done.

Here the 37-year-old has named his top five January signings as deadline day looms….

5. Gary Cahill – Bolton to Chelsea [£7million] – 2012

Gary Cahill was a year older than me in the [Aston Villa] youth team, he was a top, top player.

“Martin O’Neil wasn’t sure about him, he was great on the ball but (lacked) defensive qualities.

Cahill won two Premier League titles, two FA Cups and three European trophies at Chelsea

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Cahill won two Premier League titles, two FA Cups and three European trophies at Chelsea

“Moved to Bolton, done well there, then got his move to Chelsea, that was really deserved.

“All look at the career he had at Chelsea, Premier League titles and every trophy you can think of.

“He was an outstanding captain as well when John Terry left, so Gary Cahill to Chelsea was a great move with the career he had.

4. Patrice Evra – Monaco to Manchester United [£5.5m] – 2006

“What a signing that was! He had potential as a young player, he got that move to United and didn’t look back.

“He is up there with top three/four best left-backs in the Premier League era.

“Strong, quick, aggressive, funny… a top, top left-back.

“A leader, and what he did for France as well playing so many games [81 caps], a top player.”

Evra is regarded by many United fans to be their best-ever left-back in club history

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Evra is regarded by many United fans to be their best-ever left-back in club historyCredit: GETTY

3. Philippe Coutinho – Inter Milan to Liverpool [£8.5m] – 2013

“What a signing he was for Liverpool. Some of the games and the goals…

“Even at Villa recently when he was there, you could see he didn’t have the legs to get around the pitch anymore, but in little spaces, he was frightening.

“That first touch, that finish that he always had for Liverpool where he’d cut inside from the left and bend it into the top corner.

“He had that finish on lock at Liverpool, a top, top player, and he’s got a career to be proud of.”

On Coutinho fizzling out: “That happens in football, everyone ages differently, some people’s bodies slow down quicker than others.

“Maybe his body just wasn’t up to it. When he signed for Barcelona, everyone thought he would be a superstar, but it didn’t work.

“It didn’t work at Bayern Munich, but that can be football sometimes.”

Coutinho banged in 54 goals for Liverpool in 201 games before joining Barcelona

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Coutinho banged in 54 goals for Liverpool in 201 games before joining Barcelona

2. Virgil van Dijk – Southampton to Liverpool [£75m] – 2018

“What he’s done since he left Southampton, I’m sure there were other clubs that were after him but didn’t want to pay that little bit more money for him.

“But what he’s done at Liverpool – a phenomenon. He’s been outstanding.

“Pace, strength, his passing is outstanding, yes he has the odd game where he gets the pundits on his back because he’s not at it.

“But for me, he’s of the top centre-halves.

“He won’t go down as of the best three or four centre-halves [in the Premier League] because of longevity, he got to Liverpool at a later age.

“He’s won one Premier League and Champions League, the likes of Rio [Ferdinand], John Terry, [Vincent] Kompany I will put ahead of him.

“But an outstanding player and a top leader as well.”

Liverpool skipper Van Dijk has lived up to his hefty price tag at Anfield

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Liverpool skipper Van Dijk has lived up to his hefty price tag at AnfieldCredit: Getty

1. Luis Suarez – Ajax to Liverpool [£22.8m] – 2012

“On his day, he could be in the top three Premier League strikers [of all time].

“When you go back and look at Suarez and the goals he scored, at a home game against Norwich [2013/14 season], he’s scoring goals other strikers wouldn’t even try.

“One of his goals from distance was off the bar and in – he was just an unbelievable striker.

“He wasn’t the quickest, but he timed his runs perfectly, and he was that hungry to score, he would outpace people because of his desire.

“Finishing, he had every finish, dinks, left foot, right foot, power, [he could] bend them in, in the air as well, link-up play. An underrated striker.

“If he stayed in the Premier League for longer, he might have broke all sorts of records.”

Suarez scored 69 top-flight goals for Liverpool during his three-and-a-half-year stay

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Suarez scored 69 top-flight goals for Liverpool during his three-and-a-half-year stay





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