We are now approaching the climax of the silly season, or transfer window as it is wont to be known. Soon all the supporters of all the clubs in all the land will have presented to them their shiny new toys (SNTs). A Rodri here or a Ndombele there. Or not.
Many will be cursing their clubs for not buying the right toys, or sufficient new recruits.
Meanwhile, management everywhere will be vexing over the problem of fitting the SNTs into a squad that is already full of Johnny Foreigners, or non-Home Grown as we must refer to them. It is not my place, nor I’m sure is it necessary, to lecture fellow AA-ers on the Home Grown rule, on the squad size of 25, of which up to 17 can be non-Home Grown talents.
However, there are some on here, and indeed prevalent throughout the blogosphere, who recklessly demand the acquisition of countless new players who do not conform to the HG Rule, without considering the consequences. I just feel the need to focus for a moment.
Who do we already have? How many? Here’s a list, as far as I understand it:
Monreal; Kolasinac; Koscielny; Mustafi; Sokratis; Mavropanos
Xhaka; Torreira; Guendouzi; Elneny; Ceballos
Aubameyang; Lacazette; Asano (!)
That’s seventeen. The full quota. No room for further additions.
Pepe is here now. Tierney may be on his way (as a Scot he counts as a Johnny F). But still the mob demands more – Dani Alves, Rugani, Everton.
I read the transfer gossip and guffaw/chuckle/snort and chortle. For every one that comes in, one must leave. There are those we’d like to see go, and there are those it might be possible to transfer out.
Our Home Grown numbers are fine. We have seven (Martinez, Bellerin, Jenkinson, Holding, Chambers, AMN, Iwobi) supplemented with under-21s like Martinelli, Nketiah, Willock, Nelson, Medley, Olayinka, Thompson, most of whom seem near readiness for at least riding the pine.
But still the likelihood is the club already needs to shed players in order to conform.
I therefore suggest that for every Shiny New Toy you beg the club to acquire for you, you suggest who should be dumped to make room for them.
By the time the Newcastle game kicks off, we should know the 25. For you, who should be missing from that list?