With the January transfer window now closed, I decided to speculate as to what kind of starting XI could be thrown together from the month’s free agents and want-aways. 

Having settled on a 4-2-3-1 formation, here is the 2013 January transfer window XI.

Manager | Ryan Nelsen

The 35-year-old New Zealand international defender played his last match for QPR against Manchester City on January 29. He has left Loftus Road to take up his new role as the full-time coach of MLS side Toronto FC.

Goalkeeper | Jack Butland

Stoke City bought the England keeper for £3.5m from Birmingham

He has been loaned back to St. Andrew’s for the remainder of the season but the 19-year-old was mmouch sought after in January and made quite an impression during the Olympics. He will surely be one to watch.

Right-back | Mathieu Debuchy 

Mathieu Debuchy is one of six French players to be bought by Newcastle in January. 

The 27-year-old signed a five-and-a-half-year contract and was bought from Lille for around £5m on January 4.

Centre-back | Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa

In the centre of defence is his countryman and now teammate, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa. 

He joined Newcastle for £6.7m and signed a five-and-a-half-year deal at St. James's Park

The 23-year-old France international captained Montpellier to the Ligue 1 title last season and should be a strong defensive asset.

Centre-back | Chris Samba 

January also saw the return of the monstrous Christopher Samba to the Premier League. 

The ex-Blackburn defender joins QPR from Russian side Anzhi Makhachkala for £12.5m, just less than a year after leaving England. 

It is understood he has signed a four-and-a-half year contract worth £100,000-a-week.

Left-back | Nacho Monreal

Nacho Monreal makes the late entry for left-back. 

Arsenal signed the Spain international from Malaga for around £10m on deadline day

The move came after Kieran Gibbs was ruled out for three weeks with a thigh injury. 

Although he’s cup-tied for the Champions League, Monreal could provide the Gunners defence with some much needed stability.

Defensive midfield | David Beckham ©

Women want to be with him, men want to be him - step forward David Beckham. 

Goldenballs moved to Paris St-Germain on a free, and will be playing for free too after it was confirmed that the 37-year-old global superstar will be donating his salary of at least £1m to charity.

Beckham signed a five-month contract with PSG, and has admitted he is "excited" by the prospect of playing with the French giants. 

Defensive midfield | Moussa Sissoko

The 23-year-old midfielder is another Frenchman to join Newcastle after leaving Toulouse for an undisclosed fee, signing a six-and-a-half-year contract in the process

Sissoko is a box-to-box midfielder and was very impressive in his debut against Aston Villa, following that up with two goals in the Magpies' 3-2 success over Chelsea.

Attacking midfield | Wesley Sneijder

The Dutch playmaker overlooked interest from the Premier League to join Galatasaray in an £8.4m move, signing a three-and-a-half-year deal

‘The Sniper’ is one of the best passers in the game and will certainly boost the Turkish side’s hopes of progressing in the Champions League.

Right-wing | Daniel Sturridge

He’d probably give me that lemon face frown for not playing him as the lead striker, but Daniel Sturridge plays on the right in my team. 

Finally - a good bit of business from Liverpool who bought the 23-year-old for £12m from Chelsea

Sturridge and Luis Suarez have been playing well together so far and could even boost Liverpool’s hopes for a Champions League spot.

Left-wing | Wilfried Zaha

Manchester United bought the 20-year-old for £15m from Crystal Palace - £10m upfront with £5m in add-ons

After signing a five-and-a-half-year deal he was loaned back to Palace for the rest of the season. 

Zaha has the makings of an exciting attacker with his pace, trickery and finishing. 

I am hoping Sir Alex can hone those skills so we will soon be calling him the English Neymar, or better still, Neymar the Brazilian Zaha.

Centre-forward | Didier Drogba

This transfer window also saw the return of the beast and the spearhead for my attack – Didier Drogba. 

The Ivorian will join Sneijder at Galatasaray from Shanghai Shenhua following the Ivory Coast's elimination from the Africa Cup of Nations. 

However, Drogba's move has been cast into doubt as the Chinese club are claiming that this violates the terms of his contract with the mega-rich club.

Time will tell how this one pans out.


Striker | Mario Balotelli

There have been some over notable moves this January, including the enigmatic striker, Mario Balotelli. 

The Italian moved from Manchester City to AC Milan for £19m, and will be sorely missed by the Premier League.

Striker | Demba Ba

Next up is Demba Ba. Chelsea triggered the £7m release clause in his contract and he made the move from Newcastle. 

Even though he’s scored three goals in seven appearances for Chelsea, Drogba's return meant Ba had to make do with a mention rather than a place in the January XI.

Midfielder | Lewis Holtby

Lewis Holtby will certainly be one to watch, too. 

After Tottenham brought forward his transfer for £1.5m, he impressed in his 20 minute debut against Norwich and followed that up with another solid performance against West Brom on Sunday.

Midfielder | Philippe Coutinho

One I am looking forward to seeing is Philippe Coutinho, who moved to Liverpool from Inter Milan for £8.5m

He’s a talented youngster who could combine well with other attackers.

Do you agree with this team? Get in touch and let us know your thoughts.


DISCLAIMER: This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeFootball Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeFootball.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeFootball.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms