Blackpool v Huddersfield Town: You don’t have to spend to obtain a quality player - Carlos Corberan

FOR many seasoned Championship observers, the sight of the majority of clubs tightening their belts and not wafting their chequebooks with abandon in the transfer window made for a refreshing departure.

Even if many supporters might choose to disagree.

In the summer window that was, 126 incoming signings at second-tier clubs were either free transfers or loans with only 37 deals involving an actual fee.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Eight clubs did not spend any money at all, with half of the £40m forked out by second-tier clubs coming from Fulham.

Premier class: Huddersfield have loaned Danel Sinani from Premier League side Norwich City. (Photo by John Early/Getty Images)

Two of those clubs who have adopted a sensible approach in their transfer dealings meet tonight and according to Huddersfield Town head coach Carlos Corberan, the lack of summer spending has not diluted the quality on offer at this level in any way whatsoever in a division which is as competitive and unpredictable as it has always been in his view.

Anyone needing further proof of that fact need only look at the weekend feats of Blackpool in turning over Fulham.

Corberan, set to restore loanees Levi Colwill and Danel Sinani to his starting line-up this evening, said: “Maybe this year, we have been watching more loans than (permanent) movements and you don’t see a high investment in many of the teams. Some teams, yes, but for some teams with more economic limitations, it’s different.

“But you still have opportunities to bring very good players from League One and below. Sorba Thomas is one example of this and he is a player who can be competitive in the Championship.

Bargain hunter: Huddersfield Town manager Carlos Corberan. Picture: Barrington Coombs/PA Wire.

“We also brought Lee Nicholls, (Ollie) Turton and (Josh) Ruffels from League One as we know they can be very competitive players in the Championship. I don’t see that the level in the Championship has decreased.

“There might be less investment from some teams, but I cannot imagine less impact. In analysing the last team we played in Stoke City, they were one team with very big improvements and for example, they had a player (Mario Vrancic) who had been promoted to the Premier League with Norwich.

“Maybe the fact that we are watching more economic investment in the Premier League means that some players who were promoted are now in the Championship.

“I analyse the squad of Blackpool, I watch one Arsenal striker at 22 years old (Tyreece John-Jules) in the team and former Everton player in (Callum) Connolly who is now one of the players who has enough to play at a competitive level in the Championship.

“In a different way, the level in the Championship is still very high for me.”

A player at the opposite end of his career who needs no introduction to Town in Richard Keogh is also proving that age is no barrier, with the veteran doing his bit to help Pool beat one of the division’s promotion favourites on Saturday.

Keogh, 35, joined Town in January and impressed enough for the club to try and keep on in a playing and coaching capacity.

In the event, the Irish defender elected to head to pastures new and join the Seasiders, but there will be no hard feelings on Corberan’s part tonight, with the Spaniard effusive in his praise regarding the impact of Keogh.

Corberan added: “As a club we are very grateful with the work Richard Keogh did here. He showed a lot of ambition to continue in the Championship and from the first day, he helped us a lot at one moment when we needed cover for his position.

“As a club we are thankful, but I am as a coach too. I cannot say any negative word about him from the time he was working with us and we are thankful that this period helped the club a lot.”

Last six games: Blackpool LLDLLW; Huddersfield LWWLWL.

Referee: T Bramall (Sheffield).

Last time: Blackpool 0 Huddersfield 0, May 2, 2015; Championship.