La Liga's Transfer Tales: Getafe to Rayo Vallecano
Part two of Tim Stannard's analysis of the summer transfer activity in Spain's top flight...
The ongoing inconvenient lack of supporters and TV money sees Getafe the smartest shoppers in la Liga more often than not. Every season, the best of the Coliseum bunch have to be sold for the side to survive financially, and the poor, long suffering manager has to keep the team up in la Primera all over again. Getafe do this by attracting the best freebies from the lower half of the Liga and borrowing hand-me-downs from Real Madrid. This summer things are slightly different; as well as bringing in the very handy ÃÂngel Lafita for nothing, real money was spent (Ã¢ÂÂ¬4.5m of it) to leave a squad that's more than good enough for a top ten finish.
Best Signing A great year on loan last season saw goalkeeper Miguel MoyÃÂ¡ moving permanently for Ã¢ÂÂ¬2m.
Bonkers. Quite, quite bonkers. According to LLL's information, the club has worked it's way through 59 separate moves of players in and out, up and down, bought and sold, loaned and pretty much everything else over the transfer window. And to be honest, the blog has no idea what's going on, with the links with Udinese, Cadiz and now Watford making everything rather complex.
Best Signing LLL will admit its ignorance here, but assume midfielder Youssef El-Arabi, brought in from Al-Hilal, is a bit handy considering the French-Moroccan cost Ã¢ÂÂ¬5m and scored 17 top flight goals for Caen the season before last.
The Valencia club missed out on their desire of a big man up front to replace Arouna KonÃÂ© who came for free from Sevilla, was signed up and then moved on again for a tidy sum - Nikola Zigic and even Emile Heskey were targets. No, really. The team also made a quick profit on Xavi Torres in the same manner with a quick move from MÃÂ¡laga and then to Getafe. Levante are pretty much reliant on freebies from the likes of AEK and Samsunspor to get them through another campaign, however this does see a Ã¢ÂÂ¬3.5m profit being made on deals during the window.
Best Signing This blog has always been quite a fan of former Getafe winger Pedro RÃÂos, although Coliseum managers have been able to take or leave the 30-year-old over the years.
If LLL had predicted before the summer that Santi Cazorla and RondÃÂ³n would be sold, no money would be spent and Roque Santa Cruz and Javier Saviola would be joining for nothing then you'd say "wow, the owners must either have completely lost interest in the club, run out of cash, or something other reason related to business investments in the local area," then the blog would say you were very clever indeed.
Best Signing Tough one (tosses coin), Roque Santa Cruz?
The Premier League's craze for decent players from middling clubs sees Mallorca making a handy profit in the summer window thanks to the Ã¢ÂÂ¬6m sale of defender IvÃÂ¡n Ramis, to Wigan, a figure so hefty that there was still enough money sloshing about to pick up Javi MÃÂ¡rquez from Espanyol and as well as doing some good work for charity by giving Javier Arizmendi another gig and paying his salary.
Best Signing Having done brilliantly for Racing Santander during a loan spell from Tottenham the season before last, Giovani dos Santos could well provide similar spark for Mallorca in what is career reboot attempt No.217.
Somehow Osasuna managed to get Ã¢ÂÂ¬4m from Kuban Krasnodar for striker Ibrahima BaldÃÂ© - rather timely really, given the club lost funding from the local government. All the cash was pocketed, with Osasuna instead opting for free transfers such as Emiliano Armenteros from Sevilla and Rayo Vallecano's Alejandro Arribas.
Best signing Former Villarreal forward Joseba Llorente has still got the moves after a couple of very flaccid seasons at Real Sociedad.
A massive overhaul of the squad for Rayo but only one sale was managed for the penniless Vallecans after Michu's departure to Swansea. Raul Tamudo left, as did all the loan signings that kept the side up such as Diego Costa. Five youth teamers were promoted to the first team along with a bunch of free signings such as Espanyol defender, Jordi Amat.
Best signing A lot is going to asked of forward Chori DomÃÂnguez, who has joined on a free signing from Valencia after not doing a great deal in Mestalla for three seasons.