IT’S that time again.

Frenzied transfer talk, speculation, rumours and whispers… welcome to another deadline day.

As Sky TV and social media goes into meltdown, clubs up and down the land are ready for some last-minute dabbling as they fine-tune their squads for the run-in (or maybe switching phones off as they strive to keep their most sought-after stars).

Ipswich Town will be no different and boss Paul Lambert has already been busy this month, recruiting Callum Elder, Collin Quaner, Alan Judge, Will Keane, Simon Dawkins and James Collins.

Whether you love the drama or loathe the hype, it’s always an eventful day and it’s got me thinking about my favourite January signings at Portman Road.

Here are my top half-dozen since the turn of the millennium - not necessarily players snapped up on deadline day but certainly recruited in the first month of the year, hoping to make an impact in the second half of the season.


THE Irishman was a hit during his time at Portman Road, joining from Cardiff for £100,000 in 2006.

He plundered more than 100 goals, including 17 in the 2006/07 campaign. That haul featured a brace against Sunderland and a hat-trick against Luton.

The following season he started with four goals in three games (including two against Saturday’s opponents, Sheffield Wednesday) and one in a dramatic 2-2 draw at Norwich.

He finished with 12 goals before switching to Crystal Palace in August 2008.


THE full-back penned a three-year deal in 2007, joining from Wigan, and soon endeared himself to Town fans with a goal in the 1-1 draw at Norwich.

Reliable Wright was a regular the following season, ending the campaign with 43 appearances and a couple of goals, including one in a memorable 6-0 thumping of Bristol City.

He racked up another 36 appearances the following season, notching the decisive goal in a 2-1 win against Nottingham Forest, and Wright was also on target in a much-needed win against Derby at Portman Road in October 2009, halting a winless start to the season during Roy Keane’s tenure.

Overall, he made over 120 appearances before joining George Burley’s Palace in June 2010.


WALTERS agreed terms with Ipswich in a deal worth £100,000, plus add-ons, in mid-January 2007, having impressed in that month's FA Cup ties against Chester.

Among the highlights of a very successful spell at Portman Road, he scored his first-ever senior hat-trick in the 6-0 win over Bristol City mentioned above - one of 13 goals in 2007/08 campaign.

Town missed out on the play-offs by an agonising one point but Walters deservedly scooped the Player-of-the-Year and Players' Player-of-the-Year awards.

In the following two seasons, he managed seven and then eight goals respectively before joining Premier League side Stoke in August 2010.


NOT an obvious choice but a player I always enjoyed watching. A classy midfielder with outstanding vision and passing ability.

Larger-than-life Bullard joined at the tail-end of January 2011, initially on loan from Hull, and scored on his debut in a 2-1 victory at Derby.

He went on to score five times in 16 appearances (including two at Cardiff) and, despite having only only been with the club three months, he won the Supporters' Player-of-the-Year award.

Bullard took a pay cut in order to join Town on a permanent basis in 2011.

However, injuries curtailed the remainder of his time at the club and he was largely used an an impact sub, before parting by mutual consent in August 2012.


A STRIKER who oozed class and natural ability, McGoldrick joined Mick McCarthy's Town on loan from Nottingham Forest in January 2013. He then signed a two-year deal that summer.

He forged a dynamic partnership with Daryl Murphy during the first half of the 2013/14 campaign - plundering 16 goals, including braces against Middlesbrough, Brighton and Doncaster - but was cruelly struck down by a knee injury in mid-February.

Sadly, injuries became a recurring theme during McGoldrick's remaining time at Portman Road.

Nevertheless, he still chipped in with goals and it was a blow when boss Paul Hurst confirmed the striker was leaving last June.


SEARS remains an important part of the current-day squad, having moved up the A12 in a £100,000 deal from Colchester United in January 2015.

Versatile and faultlessly hard-working, the front man made an instant impact with nine goals during the remainder of that season, forming an impressive partnership with league top-scorer Daryl Murphy as Town reached the play-offs before losing to Norwich.

Sears started the following season in stunning fashion with four goals in his first six games and then in December a superb run and finish saw him score after 16 just seconds as Fulham were defeated 2-1 at Craven Cottage.

Sadly, the goals dried up after that and 38 matches - the equivalent of a Premier League season - slipped by before he notched in a 2-0 win over Burton Albion.

Nevertheless, Sears remains a key part of Lambert's current squad and he produced a spurt of goals (five in seven games) just after the Scot took over in October.

He most recent strike came last Saturday - a sumptuous long-range effort in the 2-1 defeat at Aston Villa.