It is that time of the season where clubs across Europe become involved in the buying and selling of players again. January marks the half-way point in most of the major leagues across the continent and managers would have assessed their transfer targets after briefly scouting them over the past few months. IBTimes UK takes a look at the five players who were brought in during the mid-season transfer window and have gone on to make a significant impact for their teams in the Premier League.
A relatively unknown Spanish midfielder, Arteta was snapped up by the then Everton manager David Moyes from Real Sociedad in Spain on loan in January 2005, but made the move permanent after the end of the season. Beginning his career with Spanish Giants Barcelona, the 31-year-old helped the Toffees secure a top four finish in the league that gave them a chance to qualify for the UEFA Champions League.
Although Arteta has not scored a lot of goals nor has a plethora of assists to his name, his skills in breaking up the opposition's play and his innate technique along with ball passing qualities cannot be underestimated. The Spaniard went on to become one of Everton's best performers in the centre of the pitch before eventually moving to north London to join Arsenal in the summer of 2011, where he currently enjoys a view from the top of the table.
The intimidating Serbian was not well known until he signed for Manchester United in January 2006 from Russian club Spartak Moscow. He quickly gained reputation for his a no non-sense approach and tough-tackling ability. From then on there was no turning back as the 32-year-old established himself as one of the most formidable defenders in the Premier League.
Since his arrival at Old Trafford, he developed a strong partnership with Rio Ferdinand at the heart of defence, helping United to five league titles and one UEFA Champions League trophy in eight years. After Gary Neville's retirement as a player, he was made club captain by Sir Alex Ferguson in 2010 and still carries the armband for the Red Devils.
The skilled full-back was signed days after the Serbian was captured by Sir Alex Ferguson in the same transfer window. Evra has carried the captain's armband for United in Vidic's absence. The 32-year-old was signed from French club AS Monaco and has been a regular feature in the Red Devils' starting 11 for the last 7 seasons.
The France international has built his reputation at Old Trafford for his attacking runs and timed jumps that have often seen him score and defend with his head. He was at the centre of controversy for leading the protest during France's disappointing World Cup 2010 campaign and was banned for five international matches by the French Football Federation but has continued to have a positive impact on United's backline.
Mascherano's entry into the Premier League in the summer of 2006 with West Ham was controversial courtesy of his third party ownership. Nevertheless, Former Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez offered him a way out of the east London club initially on loan in January the following year and signed permanently for them 12 months later. The Argentinean established himself into the Reds' starting lineup as they went on to lose the Champions League Final against AC Milan.
Mascherano won his plaudits for his tireless performances in midfield, breaking up opposition attacks while his midfield partner Xabi Alonso launched attacks from deep. The 29-year-old spent three years at Anfield, leaving England to join Barcelona in 2010, but he was so popular at Liverpool that fans considered the Argentinean as a part of what the called as "the best midfield in the world."
A perfect mix of talent, skill, controversies, dramatics and character; Luis Suarez caught everyone's eye for all the wrong reasons with his hand in the elimination of Ghana during the quarter-finals of the World Cup in 2010 which was followed by biting Otman Bakkal of PSV Eindhoven in the Eredivisie in November of the same year.
The Uruguayan was snapped up by Liverpool from Ajax on the last days of January in 2011. He announced himself in the Premier League with dazzling performances and his trickery that left many defenders wondering what hit them.
Amongst the positivity there were struggles for the striker, with his involvement in the controversial race row with Patrice Evra and another biting incident with Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic; the former Ajax player has cumulatively served an 18 match ban for those incidents in the last two seasons. The striker's theatrics and simulation on field have prompted many rival supporters and managers alike to loathe him. But love him or hate him, you cannot ignore him.
The 26-year-old seems to be showing us his good side in recent times and let his football do the talking. Despite missing the opening five matches in the league this season, the Liverpool No. 7 is on top of the goal-scoring charts with 20 goals.
Sturridge rose through the ranks of Manchester City but failed to get regular opportunities for the side, prompting his move to Chelsea in the summer of 2009. Despite scoring 11 goals in 30 appearances during the 2011/12 league campaign, he was relegated to the bench the following season. After starting only one game for the Blues in the league, the Striker was snapped up by Liverpool in January last year on a permanent deal. Since his arrival at the Merseyside club, the 24-year-old has enjoyed a new lease of life on the field under manager Brendan Rodgers.
Before his ankle injury two months ago in November, Sturridge enjoyed a stellar 2013 scoring 19 goals in just 26 appearances for the Reds in the League. His performances earned him his first start for the England national team against Republic of Ireland in May.
Sturridge is only 24 and has proven that he has what it takes to become a star in the Three Lions' starting XI. If he remains fit, the striker will surely have his spot reserved on the plane to Brazil for the World Cup in the summer.