Transfer Window Review

By Matthew Jones
Last updated : 01 February 2006

The first January Transfer window to be operated in the Coca-Cola football league has just closed and we at Tranmere Rovers Mad give you a full review of movement by the Wirral club.

Tranmere were on of the first League One clubs, and one of the first clubs in the world to use the Transfer Window when they signed
Luton Town's (Coca-Cola Championship) third choice goalkeeper Dino Seremet.

The giant Slovenian signed on New Years Day, just hours after the window open, initially for once month as a replacement for the injured John Achterberg (stomach and groin) and Steve Wilson (back).

However, only yesterday (January 30th) Dino extended his stay at Prenton Park for a further two months, due to Achterberg picking up a groin injury during training keeping him out for a further three weeks.

Simon Francis extended his stay from Sheffield United for a final month a couple of days before Rovers played Southend in League One (January 21st).

Initially, Rovers signed Francis for one month in November but they extended that loan in December for one more month and then once again has extended his stay for a third month, but Football League rules mean this will be Simon's final month at Prenton Park this season.

Due to his performances at right-back and right-wing-back, Francis has been rewarded with a place in the Football League's Under 21 squad which is due to face
Italy in the near future.

The second player to arrive from
Luton Town was Steven O'Leary who arrived during the first week of January.

The central-midfielder spent part of October and November at Tranmere during a one-month stay and was delighted to return until the end of the season after struggling to get into the
Luton squad after making 20 appearances for them during his debut season last year.

Finally, the latest signing is David Raven who arrived from Liverpool on deadline day, January 31st and will where the number 31 shirt (lets hope he's as good and committed as once number 31 Sir Steve Yates was!)

Raven who is/was the captain of Liverpool Reserves and England U-20s has equal ability at right-back or centre back and is expected to fit in at right-back when Simon Francis departs in around three weeks time.

List Of Players In

David Raven, Liverpool (loan deal until the end of the season)
Simon Francis, Sheffield United (loan deal extended for third and final month)
Steven O'Leary, Luton Town (loan deal lasting until the end of the season)
Dino Seremet, Luton Town (loan deal firstly for one month but extended by a further two months)

Now we come on to the players who have left the club during this January transfer window.

Reserve team striker Chris Dagnall has left Rovers to join League Two side
Rochdale. Dale splashed out an initial fee of £25,000 for the striker who has been prolific at reserve team level but never really got much of a chance in the First XI under Brian Little.

Rovers also released Theo Whitmore. The Jamaican midfielder struggled to get a place in the side this year, managing just three appearances (all off the substitute bench) after accepting a new one year contract in the summer. Whitmore is currently without a club.

List Of Players Out:

Chris Dagnall, Rochdale (£25,000 + £15,000 based on performance and a sell-on clause)
Theo Whitmore, Released

Transfer Window Conclusion

Having still made no replacement for Iain Hume or getting a decent winger (well we have Brown and Aiston, Little just prefers not to use them) I think this has been a poor transfer window for Rovers.

All season, fans have been crying out for a player with creativity and the only two who had it were Hume and Whitmore (to a lesser extent) who have both left the club.

Brian Little has failed to replace these two however, he has strengthened the defence which can only be a good thing (as four clean sheets in a row has proved).

Fans were worried Tranmere were going to be left without a right-back when Simon Francis left but Little has made a good move and secured David Raven for the remainder of the season which should please most Rovers fans.

Come the summer, I should think Brian Little will use the money he apparently has and hopefully he will buy the type of player this club really needs, an Iain Hume, Paul Hall or a Jason Koumas.

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