Great analysis. End of.
Thanks. One thing I forgot to add: The going rate for that type of player, particularly with a bit of resale potential down the road, is somewhere in the £12-15M range. (That seems to be what Palermo is asking for Ilicic, and they *gasp* just got relegated! ) Honda, by all accounts, is available for a third of that right now. There is little chance we could get a player of that quality for that price regardless of position otherwise.
I often find it helpful to take an economic look at sport clubs. There is little difference to be had in the bottom, say, third of the table, aside from the occasional absolutely dreadful side. For them, spending a few million pounds could grant them an extra position at the end of the season, potentially guaranteeing safety. (Look at Southampton and the rumoured Wanyama move--great for them, as it's probably worth a spot or two in the table and the extra money that brings in.) But for teams higher in the pecking order (like us), it typically takes a more significant outlay (in terms of either transfer funds or time and effort in developing youth) to take the next step, even if the magnitude of that step in the final table is still the same one or two spots. Sure, we could pretty easily build a side to get into Europe with a few tens of millions of pounds, but we don't have that. So, when bargains come around that represent significant potential improvements at a low cost, they just make sense. (I'd be sorely tempted to add Diame for the same reason at £3.5M, but that may not be feasible.) And that's before you even consider any potential marketing impact having one of Japan's biggest stars might provide; he'll be in the limelight in Brazil next season, and having him at Goodison would be immense.
Honda, maybe Deulofeu on loan with Gueye leaving for £2M or so, and possibly Heitinga out (Diame in?), with no significant departures, and I'm ecstatic at this transfer window. Heck, just give me Honda and close the window now, and I'm dancing in the streets.