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January transfers: five things you may have missed

1 February 2019

There was plenty of activity on another busy transfer deadline day and, with the January window now closed, here are a few things you may have missed from the month gone by...

1. Checkatrade Trophy paves the way for starlet's switch to Schalke

Many Clubs were reported to be showing an interest, but it was Bundesliga side Schalke who eventually won the race to secure the services of one of English football's hottest prospects in Rabbi Matondo. It was in an EFL competition that the 18-year old Wales international really caught the eye, as he helped City's Under-21s to the Quarter-Finals of the Checkatrade Trophy, making four appearances in total. Described by Wales assistant coach Osian Roberts as "a very exciting player who is extremely quick and has the ability to beat defenders," the attacker is certainly one to watch.

2. Sam's the man for Stoke City

Nathan Jones and Stoke City attracted attention with their deadline day activity, bringing in a player of "real pedigree" in Burnley's Sam Vokes, with Peter Crouch heading in the opposite direction. The Potters are eight points outside the Play-Off places, and will be hoping the striker picks up where he left off in the EFL, having scored 38 goals across two promotion-winning campaigns for the Clarets in previous seasons. 

3. Championship Clubs make use of the loan market

A number of high-profile loan deals also went through in the Sky Bet Championship, which will add to an already intriguing final few months of the season. Martin O'Neill's Nottingham Forest were among the busier Clubs, bringing in midfielder Pele from Monaco and forward Leo Bonatini from Wolves respectively. Elsewhere, Fulham's Stefan Johansen and Newcastle's Jacob Murphy joined West Brom on loan, as did Swansea's Jefferson Montero. Tom Carroll also left the Liberty Stadium, joining Aston Villa, who also welcomed Tyrone Mings from Bournemouth. Striker Scott Hogan departed the Midlands side, heading out to Sheffield United.

4. League One promotion hopefuls welcome new firepower

Five points separate the top two sides in Sky Bet League One, and Luton Town and Portsmouth have moved to add to their respective squads as the battle for promotion heats up by looking at the Championship market. Leaders Luton sealed loans for Jason Cummings (Nottingham Forest), Alex Baptiste (QPR) and Aaron Connolly (Brighton), while Portsmouth added attacking prowess in the shape of Wigan's James Vaughan - also on loan - as well as Viv Solomon-Otabor from Birmingham. The chasing pack didn't hold back either, with Sunderland agreeing a deal for Northern Ireland international Will Grigg from Wigan.

5. Hesketh brings both youth and experience to MK Dons

Sky Bet League Two side MK Dons made a statement of intent by bringing in Southampton's Jake Hesketh on loan in January. At just 22 years old, the midfielder has been tipped for big things, and already has experience of playing in the Premier League, Europa League and EFL Cup for the Saints. Hesketh spent the first half of the campaign on loan at Carabao Cup Semi-Finalists Burton Albion, scoring three goals. 


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