Opinion: January Transfer Window: Winners & Losers

The January Transfer Window has slammed shut for another year, so who’s come out of it stronger than how they went in? I analysed the done deals in League One and assessed which teams are looking upwards in the table compared to those who have suffered in the window.

Accrington Stanley

Gary Roberts (Bala Town) Free
Paul Smyth (QPR) – Loan
Adam Phillips (Burnley) – Loan
David Morgan (Southport) – Undisclosed

Tom Allen (Newcastle) End of loan

Verdict: Accrington Stanley haven’t completed much transfer business but they will feel not much is needed. It’s clear where they have looked to strengthen – in the attacking areas. They’ve brought in forward Smyth and plenty of midfielders – Morgan from Southport who’s bagged 22 goals in 105 appearances, Phillips from Burnley and the experienced Gary Roberts at aged 36.

AFC Wimbledon

Sam Walker (Reading) – Loan
Darnell Johnson (Leicester City) – Loan
George Dobson (Sunderland) – Loan
Corrie Andrews (Kingstonian) – Undisclosed

Anthony Hartigan – Newport – Loan

Verdict: Sam Walker, the emergency loan goalkeeper who made two penalty saves during his short time with the Seasiders, completes a loan move for the rest of the season. A solid keeper who made quite the impact will be a strong stopper for AFC Wimbledon who also have ex Pool player Ben Heneghan in their ranks too. A couple of steady additions to the squad too, though they did sack their manager earlier in the week.


Ellis Simms (Everton) – Loan
Kevin Stewart (Unattached) – Loan
Elliott Embleton (Sunderland) – Loan

Dan Kemp (West Ham – Leyton Orient) End of Loan
Ben Woodburn (Liverpool) End of Loan
Jamie Devitt (Barrow) – Undisclosed
Ryan Hardie (Plymouth) – Undisclosed
MJ Williams (Bolton) Undisclosed
Teddy Howe (Scunthorpe) – Loan
Oliver Sarkic (Mansfield)– Loan
Callum McDonald (Tranmere) – Free Transfer
Adi Yussuf – Released

Verdict: A quieter transfer window which Blackpool fans should start getting used to. We no longer will have an abundance of player entering and leaving Bloomfield road now we are run effectively with forward thinking owners and meticulous planning from the head coach. A few loose ends tied up with loan boys Hardie, Devitt and McDonald all leaving on permanent deals, with the latter on a surprising free transfer deal for Tranmere. New boys Stewart and Simms have made an impact already and we will have to wait to see whether Embleton will add in the attacking department. One thing was clear on social media, Sunderland fans were not happy at lending him to a League One rival.

Bristol Rovers

Joe Day (Cardiff City) – Loan
George Williams (MK Dons) – Loan

Tom Davies (Barrow) – Loan

Verdict: A quiet transfer window for Bristol Rovers, which will be worrying for their fans as they loom closer to the places of relegation. The earlier result against Blackpool leaves you wondering how the team didn’t get a greater return from that game.

Burton Albion

Hayden Carter (Blackburn) – Loan
Sean Clare (Oxford) – Loan
Dillon Barnes (QPR) – Loan
Tom Hamer (Oldham) – Undisclosed
Jonny Smith (Bristol City) – Free Transfer
Terrell Taylor (Wolves) – Loan
Josh Earl (Preston) – Loan
Ryan Broom (Peterborough) – Loan

Neal Eardley (Barrow) – Loan
Stephen Quinn (Mansfield) – Loan
Charles Vernam (Bradford) – Undisclosed

Verdict: With the Burton Albion game being rearranged, I’m not going to hide my disappointed at the fact that Burton have been able to strengthen by bringing in an additional FIVE players. An scattergun approach to strengthen all over the pitch: goalkeeper (Barnes), defender (Earl) and midfielders (Taylor, Broom and Smith).
Many of them are loans so I imagine a few will feature against Pool on the rearranged fixture. Hopefully, they still won’t cause us any problems.

Charlton Athletic

Ronnie Schwartz (FC Midtjylland)
Liam Millar (Liverpool) – Loan
Jayden Stockley (Preston) – Loan
Matt Smith (Arsenal) – Loan
Diallang Jaiyesimi (Swindon) – Undisclosed

George Lapslie (Mansfield) – Undisclosed
Alfie Doughty (Stoke) – Undisclosed
Omar Bogle (Doncaster) – Free Transfer
Brendan Sarpong-Wiredu (Colchester) – Undisclosed
Marcus Maddison (Bolton) – Loan
Johny Williams (Cardiff) – Undisclosed

Verdict: Charlton were pretty resolute at the back and the transfer window has looked to strengthen in the attacking areas of the squad. I am very jealous that Charlton have purchased Diallang Jaiyesimi from Swindon, I thought he looked lively against us in the early fixture. We have been crying out for a winger so he would’ve made a safe addition. The ex-Norwich player only signed for Swindon last summer which highlights the problems there at the moment. Few mentions for some of the talented players leaving in Maddison and Bogle, but Charlton surely have the squad depth there to still try and compete at the higher end of the table.

Crewe Alexandra

Billy Jones (Rotherham) – Loan
Stephen Walker (Middlesbrough) – Loan
Anthony Evans (Paderborn) – Loan
Harry Pickering (Blackburn) – Loan
Nathan Wood (Middlesbrough) – Loan

Offrande Zanzala (Carlisle) – Free Transfer
Perry Ng (Cardiff) – Undisclosed

Verdict: The Alex have taken advantage of the loan market and really strengthened with the majority of the players received coming from the Championship after losing solid defender and club captain Perry Ng to Cardiff. Defenders Jones and Wood will be utilised to strengthen the hole left at the back. Striking option Walker joins having previously been on loan at MK Dons to help out the forward department. Former Blackpool loanee Evans links up with Crewe but he won’t worry us too much based on his performances in tangerine.

Doncaster Rovers

Ellery Balcombe (Brentford) – Loan
Elliot Simoes (Barnsley) – Loan
Omar Bogle (Charlton) – Free Transfer
Scott Robertson (Celtic) – Loan

Ben Whiteman (Preston) – Undisclosed

Verdict: Bagging Omar Bogle on a free looks like smart business by Doncaster Rovers who continue to push on for automatic promotion places. The desire they showed to overcome a 2-0 deficit to us at half-time shows they have got the minerals to acquire one of the top spots, especially after a recent win over Lincoln narrowed the gap.

Fleetwood Town

Joe Hilton (Blackburn) – Loan
Janoi Donacien (Ipswich) – Loan
Daniel Batty (Hull) – Free Transfer
Kyle Vassell (Rotherham) – Loan

Ched Evans (Preston) – Free Transfer
Sam Stubbs (Exeter) – Undisclosed
Paul Coutts (Salford) – Loan
Jay Matete (Grimsby) – Loan
Jayson Leutwiler (Huddersfield) – Undisclosed

Verdict: It all looked really promising for Fleetwood at the start of the season but what’s gone on since has been dramatic to say the least. Simon Grayson and assistant David Dunn at the wheel now at Highbury after the marmite Joey Barton departed with rumours of Andy Pilley not having the funds to fully back Barton with his transfer decisions. Losing Coutts and Evans will surely have a knock on impact but the acquisition of Vassell on loan may prove smart if he can rediscover his goalscoring form, which has been non-existent since his Blackpool days.


Tyreke Johnson (Southampton) – Undisclosed
Callum Slattery (Southampton) – Loan
Olly Lee (Hearts) – Loan
Robbie Cundy (Bristol City) – Loan
Sacha Bastien (Unattached) – Free Transfer
James Morton (Bristol City) – Loan

Trae Coyle (Arsenal) – End of loan
Zach Medley (Arsenal) – End of loan
Scott Robertson (Celtic) – End of loan
Declan Drysdale (Coventry) – End of loan
Josh Eccles (Coventry) – End of loan
Joe Lumley (QPR) – End of loan
Jacob Mellis (Southend) – Undisclosed

Verdict: Gillingham reminds me of how Blackpool were run a few years ago. The amount of players coming and going doesn’t suggest consistency. Two midfield additions from Southampton in Johnson and Slattery should help drive them up the league and give support to the impressive Samuel. Ex Blackpool midfielder Mellis leaves for Southend while Tyreke Johnson arrives from Southampton.

Hull City

Jordan Flores (Dundalk) – Free Transfer
Gavin Whyte (Cardiff) – Loan
Dan Crowley (Birmingham) – Loan
Max Clark (Vitesse Arnhem) – Free Transfer

Daniel Batty (Fleetwood) – Free Transfer

Verdict: Dan Crowley from Birmingham really shores up the midfield for Hull along with Flores and Whyte too. Not an abundance of business done but they already have a solid team. It’s always positive to see a team not tinkering too much, especially when they seem to have a winning formula, like the old saying goes: if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

Ipswich Town

Luke Thomas (Barnsley – Loan
Josh Harrop (Preston) – Loan
Troy Parrott (Tottenham) – Loan
Luke Matheson (Wolves) – Loan

Janoi Donacien (Fleetwood – Loan
Idris El Mizouni (Grimsby) – Loan

Verdict: Plenty of loanees are in at Portman Road. Midfield duo Thomas and Harrop will add some workrate in the middle of the park. Forward Troy Parrot will want to start adding some goals to his tally.

Lincoln City

Morgan Rogers (Man City) – Loan
Regan Poole (MK Dons) – Undisclosed
Cohen Bramall (Colchester) – Undisclosed
Max Sanders (Brighton) – Undisclosed

Max Melbourne (Walsall) – Loan

Verdict: Three new permanent acquisitions for Michael Appleton and the Imps then as they look to make a charge for the league title. Midfield man Max Sanders comes from Brighton having previously been on loan at AFC Wimbledon. Bramall makes the step up from League Two football at leftback and Poole slots in at right back. Manchester City’s forward Morgan Rogers will see if he can mix in with the men in the forward position.

MK Dons

Ethan Laird (Man Utd) – Loan
Charlie Brown (Chelsea) – Free Transfer
Warren O’Hora (Brighton) – Undisclosed
Harry Darling – Cambridge – Undisclosed
Matt O’Riley – Unattached – Free Transfer
Zak Jules – Walsall – Undisclosed
Will Grigg – Sunderland – Loan

Carlton Morris (Norwich) – End of loan
Baily Cargill (Forest Green) – Undisclosed
Richard Keogh (Huddersfield) – Undisclosed
George Williams (Bristol Rovers) – Loan
Regan Poole (Lincoln) – Undisclosed

Verdict: Defenders O’Hora, Jules, Darling and Laird will help provide additional cover at the back. The latter having already made an impact and seeming an excellent addition to MK with his assists. Will Grigg links up with his former club again and will hope to have another impact and get his career back on track.

Northampton Town

Ryan Edmonson (Leeds) – Loan
Mickel Miller (Rotherham) – Loan
Bryn Morris (Portsmouth) – Loan
Peter Kioso (Luton) – Loan

Chris Lines (Stevenage) – Free Transfer
Harry Smith (Motherwell) – Loan
Nicky Adams (Oldham) – Undisclosed
Joe Martin (Stevenage) – Free Transfer
Christopher Missilou (Swindon) – Undisclosed

Verdict: Northampton have been busy in the loan market with attacking options Edmonson and Miller. Morris will add defensive cover from either midfield or join in the backline with Peter Kioso.

Oxford United

Luke McNally (St Pats Athletic) – Undisclosed
Joe Grayson (Blackburn) – Loan
Elliott Lee (Luton) – Loan
Brandon Barker (Rangers) – Loan

Sean Clare (Burton) – Loan
Derick Osei Yaw (Walsall) – Loan

Verdict: Former Blackpool manager Simon Grayson will be pleased that his son links up with Luke McNally to add some cover to the Yellows defence. Striker Elliott Lee will want to make his mark on League One after only scoring one goal for Luton. Barker will also be in a similar boat as the rangers winger will want to prove his worth.

Peterborough United


Serhat Tasdemir (Oldham) – Loan
Ryan Broom (Burton) – Loan

Verdict: The Posh didn’t expect any additions in January and they didn’t get any. Only the two players heading out in Broom and Tasdemir both on loan.

Plymouth Argle

Adam Lewis (Liverpool) – Loan
Niall Ennis (Wolves) – Undisclosed
Ryan Hardie (Blackpool) – Undisclosed
Sam Woods (Crystal Palace) – Loan

Niall Canavan (Bradford) Undisclosed
Dom Telford (Newport) – Undisclosed
Frank Nouble – (Colchester) – Loan

Verdict: The Argyle finally got their hotdog man Hardie. Many Blackpool fans were disappointed the forward didn’t get a chance to show his worth – his highlight was probably getting beat by Jimmy Bullard in the shooting training ground drill on Soccer AM. Niall Eniss adds further support to the forward line as former Seasider Dom Telford makes his move to League Two Newport Town.


Harvey White (Tottenham) – Loan
George Byers (Swansea) Loan
Lewis Ward (Exeter) – Loan

Bryn Morris (Northampton) – Loan

Verdict: Not an incredible amount going on at Fratton Park but White and Byers may add some impact to the Midfield.


Conor Shaughnessy (Leeds) – Free Transfer
Conor Grant (Sheffield Wednesday) – Undisclosed
Jack Vale (Blackburn) – Loan


Verdict: Shaughnessy heads south to Rochdale on a free transfer to help out the defence. Conor Grant a product of the Everton academy looks a strong addition from Sheffield Wednesday. Forward Kwadwo Baah, 18 looks set to sign for Manchester City at the end of the season although it is yet to be confirmed.

Shrewsbury Town

Harry Chapman (Blackburn) – Loan
Matthew Pennington (Everton) – Loan
David Davis (Birmingham) – Undisclosed
Nathanael Ogbeta (Man City) – Loan
Curtis Main (Aberdeen) Undisclosed

Shilow Tracey (Tottenham) – End of loan

Verdict: Shrewsbury have identified Midfield and Defence as areas to strengthen. Davis returns to Shrewsbury again and along with Chapman will add some energy to the midfield. Pennington will slot in to centre back along exciting young ball playing centre back Ogbeta.

Sunderland Town

Carl Winchester (Forest Green) – Undisclosed
Jake Vokins (Southampton) – Loan
Jordan Jones (Rangers) – Loan
Ross Stewart (Ross County) – Undisclosed

Morgan Feeney (Carlisle) – Free Transfer
George Dobson (Wimbledon) – Loan
Will Grigg (MK Dons) – Loan
Elliott Embleton (Blackpool) – Loan
Danny Graham – Released

Verdict: Midfielder Winchester arrives from League Two side Forest Green along with fellow permanent signing, striker Ross Stewart. The two loanee additions of Jones and Vokins will add width as the former is a winger and the latter is a leftback. Perhaps the strangest bit of business by Sunderland would be the outgoings. They have finally accepted that Will Grigg hasn’t worked out for them and cost an absolute fortune in the process. Graham hasn’t scored a league goal in two spells with them now and has been released, whilst young no.10 prospect Embleton has also come in at Bloomfield Road as we know.

Swindon Town

Dominic Thompson (Brentford) – Loan
Mark Travers (Bournemouth) – Loan

Jordan Stevens (Leeds) – End of loan
Dion Donohue (Barrow) – Free Transfer
Jonny Smith (Bristol City) – End of loan
Matt Smith (Arsenal) – End of loan
Kieron Freeman (Swansea) – Undisclosed
Diallang Jaiyesimi (Charlton) – Undisclosed

Verdict: They all seem to be going out. It must be very concerning for Swindon Town fans currently as they are losing a lot of their star players. I’ve already highlighted the talents of DJ but Freeman moves up to the championship with Swansea having signed earlier in the window which is a clear concern. Other key loan players such as Smith depart back to their parent clubs too. Left back Thompson and goalkeeper Travers will have to do an awful lot to keep this ship from sinking to League Two.

Wigan Athletic

Corey Whelan (Unattached) – Free Transfer
George Johnson (Feyenoord) – Loan
Zach Clough (Nottm Forest) – Free Transfer
Tendayi Darikwa (Nottm Forest) – Free Transfer
Funso Ojo (Aberdeen) – Loan
Curtis Tilt (Rotherham) – Loan
Jamie Proctor (Rotherham) – Loan

Ollie Crankshaw (Bradford) – Undisclosed

Verdict: Wigan have done well to get so many in the door given the financial uncertainty around the club at the moment. Former Blackpool man Curtis Tilt helps out at the back and along with fellow Rotherham teammate Proctor who will be utilised as a striker. Former Nottingham Forest duo Clough and Darikwa arrive to support in the midfield and defence. It’ll be a big ask for Wigan to remain in League One but they’ve given themselves a chance.

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Published by Dan Hopwood

Life long Blackpool fan, thanks to my older brother for dragging me to Bloomfield Road in days of Colin Hendry! Currently a seaside exile living in London.

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