On the surface, you would immediately say that Arsenal got the best midfielder in the form of German international Mesut Ozil, with bags of experience despite still only being 24-years-old.
However, the only possible criticism of that deal is that Ozil is very similar to players that Arsenal already have in their midfield so why he may be the best signing in a technical sense, he may not be the best signing in terms of overall value.
The context of Ozil’s £42.5 million transfer to Arsenal is significant because he’s a big name, superstar sort of player, the sort of player that Arsenal fans may not have expected the club to sign, especially on the last day of the transfer window.
Manchester United’s deal for Marouane Fellaini is difficult to gauge because no one seems quite able to predict just how the Belgian is going to play at Old Trafford.
He can be just as effective sitting in the middle of United’s team, breaking up the play and generally making a nuisance of himself, just as he can be effective playing in behind a main striker as an attacking midfielder.
In terms of versatility, United have probably got themselves the best deal but it’s hard to judge until we see him in United colours and playing the role that David Moyes sees him suitable for.
However, regardless of that versatility, the £27.5 million price is questionable and possibly the only reason United had to pay that fee is because the deal went through on deadline day rather than earlier in the summer.
Spurs are not exactly short of midfielders but Eriksen takes care of a direct need for a creative player in that part of Tottenham’s squad.
He offers them something at the top of their midfield which they don’t already have. Arsenal have Santi Cazorla who could have compensated for not getting Ozil while United have Michael Carrick, one of the best tactical holding players around, and Shinji Kagawa had they not signed Fellaini.
They have also signed a youngster with Champions League experience and 37 appearances for Denmark for a cheaper price than Everton were forced to pay Wigan Athletic for James McCarthy.
So Arsenal have signed the best midfielder in terms of technique, United have the best player in terms of versatility but Spurs have the best all round deal in terms of overall value.
Which side do you think got the best midfielder yesterday?
image: © martini_dk