With relegation battles on the cards or belated promotion pushes to think about, which Premier League players would help teams reach their goals? Who is likely to be available?
We have had a look at the five Premier League players Yorkshire’s sides should target:
Adrian Mariappa, Crystal Palace, defender
Mariappa was one of the Championship’s most well-regarded central defenders when he joined up with Reading in 2012 before moving to Crystal Palace in the summer of 2013. He has struggled for first-team action, making only 37 appearances in the Premier League during his time at Selhurst Park. That is not to say Mariappa is a bad player - far from it. He has just seen the Eagles surpass him as a player in his time at the club. Mariappa could yet be a real asset to a team in the Championship. Another plus comes from the fact his contract is expiring at the end of the season, which means he would be keen to earn a new deal as he enters the twilight of his career.
Darron Gibson, Everton, midfielder
The former Manchester United man may have been denied a deadline day loan away from Goodison Park, but he is clearly keen to get some first team action in before this summer’s European Championships in France. Everton turned down moves after Mo Besic suffered a hamstring injury. Besic is, however, expected to return at the end of February, which might mean Gibson becomes available to Championship sides looking to improve their teams ahead of the run-in. The 28-year-old would likely slot into most teams in the division, and with only 48 games over the last four years for the Toffees, he is surely pining for some first team action.
James Chester, West Brom, defender
Chester has already expressed his regret at joining West Brom, despite only joining them from Hull in the summer. He has made only three appearances this season. The 27-year-old is another player that needs to play first team football to guarantee himself a place at Euro 2016, as he is regarded as a potentially important member of Wales’s back four. Chester may not be willing to drop back down to the Championship, but a team aiming for promotion could grab a promotion-ready central defender ahead of a summer move.
Marvin Emnes, Swansea City, striker/winger
The former Middlesbrough man has struggled to impose himself at Swansea City ever since joining them permanently in 2014, failing to score a single goal in the Premier League after signing a three-year-deal. Emnes was, however, highly rated in the Championship, although he was never prolific. For a team gunning for promotion, he would offer another option off the bench to turn a game or could find form with a consistent run. He would also potentially be a difference maker in a relegation threatened side. Emnes saw a loan move collapse earlier this season, suggesting Swansea are willing to let him leave.
Kyle Lafferty, Norwich City, striker
Perennially linked with Leeds United over the course of the transfer window, there is a sense that Lafferty is available for a loan move away from the Canaries. This is especially the case after Norwich secured Steven Naismith from Everton, significantly improving their striking options. Lafferty was allowed to leave Norwich on loan to FC Sion, but the move collapsed on deadline day, suggesting it will be quite easy for a team in the Championship to get him in over the emergency loan window.