\ A|As we approach the half way point of the January transfer window, it is time to turn our attention away from the lack of activity and judge how some of the summer's Premier League signings have faired so far.
The summer of 2013 was a busy one and whilst we saw buckets of cash thrown about in one corner, we witnessed a whole host of low budget purchases in another.
For bigger clubs, big money can be wasted but it can also be utilised. Smaller clubs must spend their budget wisely, and in some cases a shrewd piece of business may just mean the difference between relegation and safety.
Premiership survival, winning the title or European qualification; all are comparable achievements depending on the realistic limitations of your club; and acquiring the right personnel is often paramount to gaining success in any area of the league.
Here is part two, featuring players selected 6-10 in our countdown of the top signings of the season to date:
10. Gareth Barry - (Man City - Everton on loan)
Well no one saw this coming. When Everton approached Man City for the temporary services of Gareth Barry I'm sure there were a few raised eyebrows amongst the Everton fans. Given his seemingly declining ability to keep up with the pace of the game, it appeared that his days playing in the top tier of English football were surely numbered. To everyone's surprise he has found a new lease of life in an Everton side that is attempting to mount a possible challenge for a top 4 finish.
9. Loic Remy - (QPR - Newcastle on loan)
A complete no-brainer for Newcastle. Before QPR were even technically condemned to relegation, a host of teams were looking to battle it out for Remy's services. A proven goalscorer with bags of talent; he slotted into a Newcastle side that was in desperate need of an in-form striker. Ten league goals later and a permanent move to the Toon must certainly be on the horizon.
8. Romelu Lukaku - (Chelsea - Everton on loan)
Another no-brainer considering his superb form for West Brom last season. The only shock being that Chelsea were willing to donate 15+ goals to another Premier League team for the season. To no one's surprise, he went straight into an exciting new Everton side and has so far netted 9 Premier League goals. Expect at least another 9 to come by May...
7. Fernandinho - £30 million (FC Shakhtar Donetsk - Man City)
In stark contrast to previous seasons of wild spending, Man City managed to splash the mountains of cash far more wisely in the summer of 2013. A variety of names were bought in to strengthen the balance of the squad as opposed to bulking it out with big purchases just for the sake of it. Fernandinho has been central to turning Man City into the most cohesive side since the Sheikh's first came to town. There finally seems to be some structure around the rotation of this Man City team, and their best eleven looks more obvious than in previous years. They paid a lot of money for this dynamic midfielder, but it seems to be one of the few signings which have been made solely with the benefit of the team in mind.
6. Dejan Lovren - £8.5 million (Lyon - Southampton)
The Croatian centre-back has been a regular in a high flying Southampton side which has the joint third best defensive record in the league. His wealth of top level experience - having competed for both Lyon and Dinamo Zagreb in European competition - has benefited Southampton's ambitious side greatly. He took no time at all to deal with the pace of the Premier League and has looked more than a match to some of the league's attacking talent.
image: © Erik Daniel Drost