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Ontheminute.com: As many questions as answers after transfer deadline dash

As many questions as answers after transfer deadline dash

Published: 06.09.12 / Written by: David Gold

The usual dash for players as the transfer window closed saw Javi Garcia sign for Manchester City in the biggest move of the day.

It was a strange transfer deadline day, with a number of teams looking for reinforcements and failing to make them.

One, Liverpool, notably missed out on Clint Dempsey after refusing to up their offer for the player, allowing Tottenham to steal in and clinch the signing of the American. Liverpool did not sign anyone on the last day of the window, disappointing fans who are concerned over a lack of goals and strikers who can score them.

Liverpool were not the only team struggling to bring in who they were after. Manchester City only signed Javi Garcia after a fruitless chase for Javi Martinez and Daniele de Rossi. They were also thwarted in attempts to sign a forward by Robin van Persie's preference for the red side of Manchester.

City ended the transfer window with Roberto Mancini once again whining about failing to sign everyone he wanted. His complaints are becoming rather tiresome, it must be said.

Chelsea are another team who have spent big but made no moves as the deadline approached last night. Daniel Sturridge almost left, Michael Essien went to Real Madrid, but there was no signing of a striker, as they had desired.

Tottenham may have brought in Dempsey and Hugo Lloris yesterday, but their big move for Joao Moutinho was thwarted. It was a negotiation which went on, and on, and although it seemed close, an agreement could not be reached.

North London rivals Arsenal also endured a quiet day, despite looking for a defensively minded player, whether in midfield or defence. They had looked at Montpellier's Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, but he decided to stay in France for the final year of his contract. A possible move for Essien was thrown off course by Madrid's interest. So Arsenal too, ended up without the signing they were looking to make.

All of the near moves which did not come off demonstrate that there is a collective tightening of belts as UEFA's financial fair play rules come in. Teams like Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City know they must spent less to meet the requirements. Others like Arsenal and Tottenham are trying to drive as hard a bargain as they can in search of value. It all adds up to a stalemate and game of brinkmanship in the transfer market, with teams stalling and deciding to wait for a better offer to make itself available.

It would seem at least therefore as though the transfer window is illustrating that football is suffering finally from the economic malaise affecting the rest of the world. Teams are being forced to spend thriftily, but with so much debt carried by so many clubs, with so many players to offload, something has to give. Yesterday's transfer deadline day was a sign of things to come, a host of teams playing a delicate balancing act between financial ruin and a competitive playing squad.

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