The closing of the transfer window at midnight on the 31st of August is still over a month away. Yet the football blogs are awash with disconsolate fans, convinced in their own minds, that the fact that their club has not yet purchased the top player they believe is indispensable, is proof positive that the club or manager lack ambition.
Arsenal are a case in point, having just paid £8.5 million for a centre half that had been scouted and watched continuously for months by the same people who had evaluated and recommended Thomas Vermaelen for AW. We immediately find our new man is derided as not good enough, supposedly lacking class, not the world-beater the club needed. These opinions based mainly on the amount of money paid for the player. The argument being, if he was any good he would have cost more and of course it also proves no one else is coming in because AW wouldn’t spend that much on a back up. Regardless of the fact that at this level football is a squad game.
Mind you TV himself, quoted by many judges as the best PL buy of last year, is, according to these blogging super coaches part of the problem. He isn’t big enough even if he has a big jump, he is easily knocked off the ball by bullying centre forwards and needs a giant next to him for protection at set pieces. I would love one or two of these guys to tell him that to his face. He doesn’t look a pushover to me.
In thinking about this I am reminded of Brian Clough, “Cloughie” in his heyday loved punters, fans and pundits to tell him what he needed. Rumour has it, that on one memorable day he was informed by a reporter that the European club they were going to play had a centre forward who was the most deadly header of the ball in the business, “Don’t you worry young man says Cloughie, we have a secret weapon, a young man from a pacific island, he is 7’3” cant kick for toffees but makes his living heading and cracking coconuts as they fall from the tree, how’s your man going to deal with that” says Brian and walks of laughing.
More than a month remains of this transfer window. More business is usually done in the final fortnight than in all the preceding weeks. Personally, I am going to sit back, watch the preseason games, enjoy the silliness on the blogs, TV and radio and await the first of September with anticipation, knowing that the boss is more likely, than probably any other premiership manager to surprise us all with quality players – in his own good time!
Written by dandan