Deal sheets and faulty Spanish computer networks meant it was a quarter past midnight on Tuesday/Wednesday before Helder Costa’s loan from Leeds United to Valencia was confirmed, the same time Bradford City’s loan signing of Theo Robinson was.
Middlesbrough had to wait until yesterday teatime to hear if Djed Spence was their player or Nottingham Forest’s this season.
Although English clubs abandoned going it alone after synchronising their window with the start of the season rather than the rest of Europe, there is still not complete uniformity over when deals can be done.
It gives Huddersfield Town hope of moving on Isaac Mbenza after their gamble with his contract appeared to backfire.
This summer they triggered a clause extending the French-born Belgian Under-21 international’s contract so they could sell one of the last survivors of the Terriers’ Premier League era, on wages that reflect that. Unless they pull a rabbit out of the hat, they are lumbered with them until at least January.
But Ukrainian clubs can trade until tomorrow, Russian sides Tuesday, Turkish Wednesday, and Serbian until the 17th.
If not, Huddersfield must get Mbenza back up to speed having tried to force him out. Like Karlan Grant last summer and Juninho Bacuna this, Carlos Corberan made the 25-year-old train alone. Grant and Bacuna got their moves but unless Dynamo Kiev, Spartak Moscow, Fenerbahce, Red Star Belgrade or whoever come to the rescue, Mbenza will have to be reintegrated.
“Every player with a contract with us is working for us,” Corberan explained a fortnight ago. “I can’t create any expectation in the team-mates that he might be here but he’s working with the physical staff, same as Bacuna was.”
Meanwhile, Doncaster Rovers and Middlesbrough are expected to scour the market for free agents – Rovers looking for a striker, Boro a left-sided defender after Spence departed. Players whose contracts were cancelled before Tuesday night do not have to wait until January to move.
Huddersfield signed Yaya Sanogo and Oumar Niasse that way last season and in the latter case discovered why it can be such a risk.
For the determined shopaholics, transfer business never has to stop.