Compared to summer and last year, this January was a relatively quiet one. That said, the Blues still got plenty of business done, so let's review.
IN: Gary Cahill (Bolton Wanderers, £7M), Kevin de Bruyne (Genk, £6.7-£8M), Kenneth Omeruo (Standard Liege, unknown), Patrick Bamford (Nottingham Forest, £1.5M).
OUT: Nicolas Anelka (Shanghai Shenhua, undisclosed), Alex (Paris Saint-Germain, £4.2M) Kevin de Bruyne (Genk, season loan), Josh McEachran (Swansea City, season loan), Gael Kakuta (Dijon, season loan), Patrick van Aanholt (Vitesse, season loan), Milan Lalkovic (ADO den Haag, season loan), Kenneth Omeruo (ADO den Haag, 18 month loan), Phillip Prosenik (AC Milan, undisclosed), Rhys Taylor (Rotherham, season loan), Kaby Djalo (AEL Lissamol, undisclosed).
That's a lot of outs and only one first-teamer in. Chelsea essentially swapped Alex for slightly-more-expensive British equivalent Gary Cahill and let Anelka - a player who would have been immensely helpful while Didier Drogba and Salomon Kalou are off at the Africa Cup of Nations - walk. One can only assume that Shanghai offered lots of money.
The big non-Cahill acquisition is of course Kevin de Bruyne, who was bought from and then immediately loaned back to Genk for the rest of the season. There were a number of interesting loan deals made, with Josh McEachran's clearly the most important. Hopefully the young midfielder can see some pitch time with the Swans and that the rest of the kids who were sent out do well as well*.
*This was a terrible sentence. Sorry.
Finally, we had a couple of departures from the reserve setup, with Kaby Djalo and Phillip Prosenik leaving. If you care about these, you're weird.
In summary, then, we didn't do much. The most important deals were the sales of Alex and Anelka, which should clear some of the deadwood off the roster, the signing of Kevin de Bruyne and the loaning deals. All of these are geared towards making Chelsea better in the future, which is worrying considering that the club appears to be facing a very tough fight to even finish in the top four this season, and we're not getting any better. it's an interesting, ballsy, gamble, and I sure hope it turns out ok.
On the plus side, we'll have a lot of cash to go after our major targets this summer, which supposedly include the likes of Eden Hazard, Lucas Moura and God.
How do you feel about the January window? Have your say in the comments and vote on the patented We Ain't Got No History Smiley Scale.