The January transfer window slammed shut at 11pm on Wednesday night and with that, Ben McAleer is on hand to outline his winners and losers from the month...
First up, the winners...
Arsenal's attack looks fearsome again
Had you offered Arsenal fans the opportunity to lose Alexis Sanchez, but sign Henrikh Mkhitaryan in exchange, land Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang for a club-record fee and see Mesut Ozil pen a new new deal before the window opened, most would have taken that. While the Gunners fell to a 3-1 loss at Swansea, the arrival of the dynamic attacking duo from Borussia Dortmund's free-flowing 2015/16 side eased the pain of Alexis' departure. Ozil's new contract is the icing on the cake.
Of course, there is still work to be done to improve the team - the defence and midfield needs bolstering - but in the final third, Arsenal have one of the best foursomes in the league. At 10/1 to land a top-4 finish still, even with an eight-point gap between themselves and Chelsea, could certainly be worth a look in as we come into the business end of the campaign. Arsenal's form traditionally picks up in spring for the final sprint. With Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan in the side, they'll be a touch quicker coming around the final bend.
Chelsea strengthen defence, midfield and attack
Similarly, while it is difficult to praise Chelsea following a 3-0 home loss to Bournemouth, their movements in the market improves three areas that needed strengthening. Ross Barkley adds another central midfield and attacking option to the squad, affording Antonio Conte greater tactical flexibility in the middle of the park. The Blues boss has also been keen on another wing-back to challenge Marcos Alonso, and got his wish six months later than he'd hoped with the arrival of Emerson from Roma, while his lengthy striker pursuit drew to a close with the capture of Olivier Giroud from Arsenal.
Giroud is the ideal Plan B forward having scored more goals as a substitute (17) than any other Premier League player since the start of the 2012/13 season. Injury to Andreas Christensen on Wednesday night hardly eases his defensive concerns, but Chelsea have bolstered in three areas that required investment over this gruelling period. It's tough to know just where Chelsea and Conte are at the moment but just three points separate the defending champions and Manchester United in second place, and a good run of form will make the Blues' odds of 3/1 to finish winner without Manchester City look very big. On the flipside, looming visits to both Manchester sides will undoubtedly test their resolve to finish second.
Hughton addresses Brighton's attacking weakness
Brighton's lack of goals this season has been cause for concern, with no Premier League team scoring fewer than the Seagulls' paltry 18. Chris Hughton, though, is looking to remedy this problem and made two astute captures last month, first off by signing Jurgen Locadiafrom PSV and then bringing fan favourite Leonardo Ulloa back to Brighton on loan for the rest of the campaign. Locadia's return of nine goals and two assists for PSV this season is a respectable one to say the least, while the 24-year-old's versatility across the final third is an added bonus.
Ulloa, meanwhile, provides the physically dominant forward threat in attack. Fans will be hoping the Argentine can pick up where he left off having scored 14 and assisted four more in his final season for the Seagulls. If the pair can hit the ground running, then Brighton at2.36 to finish the top promoted team on the Exchange could well be worth backing. It's incredibly tight at the bottom of the table, with just a solitary point separating the six teams from 14th to 19th. Strike up a run of form, get back among the goals and Brighton can easily pull away from danger.
Slimani and Kenedy bolster Newcastle's forward options
Similar can be said of Newcastle, who invested soundly in January. Rafa Benitez had wanted to bring in a left-back last summer and Emerson's move to Chelsea sanctioned Kenedy's switch to St. James' Park. The Brazilian played a more advanced role against Burnley on Wednesday night, but made an immediate impact, providing the assist for Jamaal Lascelles' opener in the 1-1 draw with Burnley. The arrival of Islam Slimani swells Benitez's attacking options and affords the Magpies boss an additional physical forward threat.
The Algerian may have struggled for consistent game time following his arrival from Sporting in 2016, yet returns of six goals and four assists in 15 Premier League starts is not to be sniffed at. If Benitez can reignite the goalscoring form that made him such a threat for Sporting in his final year in Portugal - Slimani bagged 27 league goals to prompt a move to Leicester 18 months ago - then he'll have the ideal forward to fire Newcastle to safety.
Tottenham add Mour quality to strong squad
Mauricio Pochettino finally made his first ever January transfer window move following his arrival in the Premier League in 2013 and did so in some style with the arrival of Lucas Moura from PSG. The Brazilian was introduced to the supporters at half time in Wednesday night's 2-0 win over Manchester United and the Brazilian's capture comes as a boost for the north London side.
Spurs have lacked a traditional winger against staunch opponents this season and with 12 goals and five assists for PSG in Ligue 1 last season, Moura provides a much-needed goalscoring threat from wide. Pochettino now has plenty of attacking options for the final third of the campaign. The Argentine is recovering key players from injury and with Spurs finding their feet at just the right time, odds of 11/1 to finish second aren't to be sniffed at, especially with just five points separating themselves and United.
No Mahrez but Laporte shores up City's backline
Manchester City failed with a spectacular deadline day swoop for Riyad Mahrez, but Pep Guardiola did secure the services of long-term centre-back target Aymeric Laporte. The Frenchman made his debut in City's no nonsense 3-0 win over West Brom on Wednesday night, while his capture improves something of a problem position for Guardiola.
Beyond John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi, the City boss was without quality, injury-free options at the back, which could have hindered the club's pursuit of domestic - Premier League aside - and continental glory. Importantly, Laporte's arrival allowed for Eliaquim Mangala to depart, with the error prone centre-back leaving for Everton on loan late on deadline day. If that doesn't make City a winner, than I don't know what does.
And now the losers...
Departures outrank arrivals at Liverpool
The arrival of Virgil van Dijk Liverpool defensively and saw Jurgen Klopp at long last land a priority signing, but the departures of Philippe Coutinho and Daniel Sturridge arguably leaves the team short in the final third. A 3-0 win at Huddersfield on Tuesday night quickly saw them overcome successive defeats to Swansea and West Brom in the Premier League and FA Cup, respectively, though three points against a Terriers side that has failed to win in seven and lost their last four hardly suggests they're over any sort of crisis.
Liverpool now go into the final slog of the season with an injury-prone Adam Lallana as the link between midfield and attack in Klopp's favoured 4-3-3 formation, while Danny Ings and Dominic Solanke as backup forward options doesn't exactly inspire confidence. Despite reports linking Liverpool with moves for Thomas Lemar and Christian Pulisic, not to mention ongoing rumours suggesting they'll pay to bring Naby Keita's summer move forward, none came to fruition and it feels as though the Reds could be made to pay for their decision not to invest in the final third.
They're still 1.34to finish in the top-four on the Exchange, but now level on points with Chelsea and two ahead of Tottenham, it'll be interesting to see whether they'll live up to the billing without Coutinho and Sturridge.
West Ham fail to address problem position
West Ham's capture of Joao Mario is not to be scoffed at, with the Portuguese midfielder a solid arrival at the London Stadium. Mario's form may have tailed off during his time at Inter, but he's not become a bad player overnight. However, the real conundrum for the Hammers comes further forward. West Ham's striker pursuit has not been the most fruitful of tasks in the past and having sold off Diafra Sakho and Andre Ayew last month, there is the risk that they'll be left short up front.
Marko Arnautovic and Andy Carroll are currently sidelined through injury, while their failed pursuits for Fedor Smolov and Islam Slimani led them to secure the services of Jordan Hugill from Preston. There is now significant pressure on the 25-year-old to hit the ground running, but the leap from Championship to Premier League is a gulf that widens with each passing year. West Ham's move for Hugill feels borne out of desperation more than anything and could well hinder their chances of a top half finish. With just four points between the Hammers and relegation-mired Southampton and Swansea, West Ham's odds of10.00 to go down is tempting.
Signings thin on the ground for sliding Saints
Southampton's goal woes are well documented and Mauricio Pellegrino did all he could to rectify the issue in January. The arrival of Guido Carrillo from Monaco adds competition to the striker ranks, yet while a goal every 91.1 minutes since the start of the 2016/17 Ligue 1 season is very solid, a majority of those came when Monaco were well in control rather than the Argentine netting decisive goals. Of course, Pellegrino is aware of Carrillo's ability - the duo worked together during their respective time at Estudiantes - yet it's a significant risk to pin Southampton's hopes of avoiding relegation on the 26-year-old.
A failed pursuit for Quincy Promes was also a significant blow to Saints, while the decision not to invest in another centre-back in the wake of Virgil van Dijk's big money move to Liverpool and bolster a defence that has conceded 36 goals this season is hardly the way forward for a team battling to secure safety. With it tight at the bottom, Saints are 4/1 to be relegated, though Pellegrino is the 4/6 favourite to be the next Premier League manager to lose his job. Even replacing the manager at the St. Mary's helm may not be enough to help Southampton, whose problems run deeper than just an underperforming head coach.