Amad Diallo and January’s five worst transfers so far

FT Desk
  • FT Desk
  • Updated: 29 Mar 2022 15:08 BST
  • 5 min read
FT Desk Updated: 29 Mar 2022 15:08 BST 5 min read
Amad Diallo, Rangers

The January transfer window is always a risky time to do business.

Often clubs make moves out of desperation. It could be a team at risk of relegation who need to buy players in order to try and stay up. It could also be a club who need an injection to boost their chances of Champions League qualification.

Whatever the reason, the history books have shown us that January transfers can often end badly.

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Almost two months since the end of the January 2022 transfer window, we take a look at five players who moved this year that have struggled so far at their new clubs.

Amad Diallo – Man Utd to Rangers (Loan)

Amad Diallo has had a nightmare in the UK ever since signing for Man Utd from Atalanta in a big-money deal in January 2021.

He barely got a look-in at Old Trafford and so was shipped out on loan this January to Rangers in the hope this temporary deal would be the making of him.

Rangers have given up on Amad already

Rangers have given up on Amad already

However, within a number of weeks of joining Rangers, Amad was virtually frozen out of the squad.

The 19-year-old has only managed six appearances in all competitions for Rangers, with his only goal coming on debut against Ross County. Even after that outing, though, he was mocked for a post he made on social media.

He has played just 22 minutes of Scottish Premiership football in the last seven games and Rangers appear to have already given up on him.

Ricardo Pepi – FC Dallas to Augsburg

Big things were expected of Ricardo Pepi when he became the most expensive American MLS player in history to join a European club for a fee of €18 million.

However, so far at Augsburg he has not looked ready at all for the level of football displayed in the Bundesliga.

He has made six appearances for his new club without scoring or assisting, and his goalless streak for club and country now dates back to October – his confidence at rock-bottom.

Like Amad, though, Pepi is still very young at just 19 and so we need to give him time to develop.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles - Arsenal to Roma (Loan)

Ainsley Maitland-Niles moved to Roma on loan in January, having barely featured under manager Mikel Arteta in the first half of this season.

Jose Mourinho was desperately looking for a versatile player capable of strengthening the wing-back roles for Roma.

However, unlike fellow Englishmen Chris Smalling and Tammy Abraham, Maitland-Niles has been a disappointment at the Stadio Olimpico.

Mourinho quickly decided that he was not worthy of a first-team place and as time has worn on he has increasingly become a bit-part player. Mourinho has even preferred 20-year-old Nicola Zalewski to him at wing-back in recent games.

It is already accepted that Maitland-Niles will not be making his Roma move permanent this summer.

Felipe Caicedo – Genoa to Inter (Loan)

Felipe Caicedo’s January loan move to Inter was bizarre at the time and now looks even more bizarre now.

The 33-year-old was enduring a dreadful season at Genoa when he made the switch, having scored just one goal in 10 games.

Inter were looking for a physical backup for Edin Dzeko and brought in Caicedo, who worked with manager Simone Inzaghi during their time together at Lazio.

But Caicedo has looked in appalling shape during his rare minutes on the pitch as a substitute. Inter, having been romping to a second straight Scudetto when they signed Caicedo, now are on a terrible run of form and at risk of losing the league to Milan.

Wout Weghorst - Wolfsburg to Burnley

After selling Chris Wood to Newcastle, Burnley spent heavily on Wout Weghorst in January – splashing out €14m for a player who turns 30 this year.

Weghorst was supposed to be the man that saved Burnley from relegation – and he still may be – but so far he has not delivered.

In nine games, the giant Dutchman has scored just one goal and Burnley are currently on a three-match losing streak without scoring.

With 11 games to go, Burnley are 19th in the Premier League and four points from safety.

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