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Five eye-catching Championship transfers from January so far

Since the opening of the winter window on January 3, there has been a frenzy of movement among Championship clubs, with the majority of teams looking to strengthen their squads before it slams shut on February 2.

Coral writers look at which January transfers have been the most eye-catching ahead of a thrilling run-in for the remainder of the Championship season.

Miguel Layun
Watford, 16/1 with Coral to win the Championship, secured a deal for the 26-year-old Mexico international wing back, signing him for an undisclosed fee from La Liga side Granada on a four-and-a-half-year contract.

Both the Hornets and the La Liga outfit are owned by the Italian Pozzo family and, despite an initial loan deal reportedly being put in place, Layun signed permanently at Vicarage Road after only joining Granada from Mexican side Club America, at the end of December. This attack-minded defender featured in all four of his country’s games at the 2014 World Cup, and is a key player for Aztecs national boss Miguel Herrera.

Stefan Maierhofer
Millwall re-signed the 6ft 7in Austrian striker on a short-term loan deal, seeing him stay until the end of the current season. The Lions first signed Maierhofer in March last year with the target man playing a vital part in the club avoiding relegation.

However, both Millwall and the striker were unable to agree a longer deal due to the player’s wage demands. With Ian Holloway’s side also signing Paris Cowan-Hall, the tricky winger could provide pinpoint crosses for towering striker Maierhofer as the Lions look to avoid the drop again.

Tony Watt
Former Celtic forward Watt agreed a deal to join play-off hopefuls Charlton Athletic after a frustrating spell in Belgium with Standard Liege. Joining them from the Hoops last summer, after spending the 2013/14 campaign on-loan at fellow Belgian Pro League side Lierse SK, he will be looking to catch Scotland national coach Gordon Strachan’s eye after making the senior squad in 2013.

Watt, who famously netted Celtic’s Champions League winner against Barcelona in 2012, made 17 appearances for Standard this season, scoring just twice. Scotland’s Under-21 international will aim to help Charlton into the play-offs (an outside 40/1 shout), but faces a tough task with his new club having gone eight league games without a win.

Todd Kane
Nottingham Forest signed the Chelsea right-back on loan until the end of the season, following Kane’s stint at Bristol City being terminated. The 21-year-old started three games for the Robins before being recalled by Jose Mourinho’s side.

Forest have Kane’s fellow full back Dan Harding on loan as well, after Jack Hunt’s loan stint at the City Ground finished in December. Stuart Pearce was unwilling to meet the evaluation for Hunt, opting to capture Kane instead, in a bid to resolve defensive problems at the club. Forest are hoping for a spot in the play-offs, but have fallen to 13th after a string of seven games without a victory.

Liam Ridgewell
Wigan Athletic signed defender Ridgewell on a six-week loan deal from MLS franchise Portland Timbers, after the 30-year-old joined the Oregon outfit last summer. Ridgewell, who has scored twice in 14 outings in the MLS, joins Wigan for his second stint in England, having previously made 351 appearances during spells at Aston Villa, Birmingham City and West Bromwich Albion.

Malky Mackay’s Latics will be hoping the loan-capture of the former Premier League player will boost chances of avoiding relegation, after slipping to second from bottom. Wigan are 15/8 to be relegated this season.