If we had finished the season on fumes and in ninth or tenth, I certainly would have pointed to injuries because at a certain point you can't remove that much elite talent (especially from a team in such short supply of what is often referred to as "quality") and expect to perform at the same level. However, on almost pure guts, heart, and will, our team finished 5th and made a nearly miraculous run to the FA Cup Final. This is a team that never allowed adversity to affect them and never made excuses — even if they had every right to make them.
So why does it seem that in every off-season our club always seems to find a reason... any reason to prolong talks with a possible transfer or to complicate the proceedings to such a degree that they almost always break down? Do not get me wrong, I understand that more money would solve a lot of problems, but seeing clubs like Aston Villa, Sunderland, Wigan and Hull City find a way to make deals whereas we seem to find a way to NOT make many deals in the face of logic and circumstance truly disturbs me.
Now I don't know if Kyle Naughton is worth the fuss. But did it really surprise any of us to have a bid ACCEPTED and have the player prefer us and STILL find a way to not make it happen? I'm sure Sheffield United played their part, but these kinds of things sure FEEL like they only happen to us.
There's an expression in American sport for when a team prevails in unlikely circumstances known as "snatching victory from the jaws of defeat". Doesn't anyone ever feel like we snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in the transfer market? We must have SOME money to have a bid accepted, so I don't want to hear that we don't have a pot to piss in. I'm just asking for reasonable activity.
There is nothing more frustrating than checking the unofficial mouthpiece of the club — the Liverpool Daily Post — and reading about the club once again "rubbishing reports" of yet another quality player linked to Everton — often quality players who come with a reasonable price tag (Lorik Cana, anyone?). Once again, I fear overly cautious policies will once again leave all the transfer work to the last minute and thus demand yet another Cinderella run from our team just to maintain our present status.
Loosen the bureaucracy just a bit, gentleman and just get... the deal... done. Pay a few pounds more, accept that you don't always get the exact to-the-letter deal you want, and focus on the bigger picture, which is moving the club forward. Our current players have earned it and our fans deserve it. We find a way to win on the pitch. Let's find a way to win more often off it.
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1 Posted 24/07/2009 at 06:58:18
I totally agree with you about the time it takes from getting a fee agreed to the actual completed transfer of the player. Kyle Naughton I will be honest is a player I don't know about, was/is he good enough I don't know? But DM does know!
Maybe it was Everton who stalled, maybe Spurs could stump up the cash now (in full); Everton may have offered money in stages.
Is the supposed takeover (which has been denied and quite frankly I’ve heard enough and it will happen when and if it happens) had an affect on the board, Moyes and maybe just maybe Moyes could be looking at a greater/higher level of players!
In my view, DM and EFC should be signing players now, they are having a good pre-season (much better than last seasons fiasco, with DM delaying a contract etc), this would help players settle in more quickly.
I can't wait for the start of the season, I think we will be quick off the blocks, and I think with Saha, Jo, Yak, Big Vic and Vaughany the strikes force is settled as is the defence, we should be getting a couple of decent midfielders to create and another to anchor the defence (a younger Carsley). Also a new goalkeeper to put the pressure on Tim Howard.
I think EFC will do just as well this season as last, but to break into the top four — well I leave that to Man City. COYB
2 Posted 24/07/2009 at 07:24:55
The harsh reality is that this is the harsh reality. We will seek to get players on payment over many year deals, with add-ons, performance payments, on-selling payments etc - anything to prolong the pain of payment.
Such is life. The aim must be to do this well and make fewer mistakes in the process than those around us.
3 Posted 24/07/2009 at 08:21:40
I don’t think this is a bad thing. If you look at the amount we’ve spent on our players, its rare to find one where we’ve overpaid. But at the same time, this strategy means that deals can easily be gazumped by teams that are prepared to pay more than the player is worth.
I think the answer is patience. This strategy is ultimately the right one, given that money is not our strength. We just need to wait for the right deals to come along (as they inevitably do...Cahill, Arteta, Lescott, etc).
I suppose the difficulty, though, is that as we move up in the world, we’re looking to sign better quality players, and thus competing with the rich clubs for players...
The answer: more patience...buy the good players when they’re young!
4 Posted 24/07/2009 at 12:44:09
5 Posted 24/07/2009 at 12:45:35
6 Posted 24/07/2009 at 15:05:30
In general, I think it’s smart to buy when other people aren’t buying, or look in the places that other people aren’t looking. That’s when the "bargains" come along. Moyes very rarely goes for the players that everyone’s looking at, and I think that ultimately provides more value. Unfortunately, it seems that other clubs have cottoned onto this, and decided to just wait for Moyes to make a move, and then copy it! So, I’m not sure what the answer is! I hope it doesn’t mean selling Lescott, though...
7 Posted 24/07/2009 at 17:51:21
What this means is that we are aiming for Grade B players (Cana), or Lower Grade gems (Naughton,Elm) , who unfortunately want £40-80k a week , which again we cant afford. These players are the ones the likes of Aston Villa , Spurs , Sunderland have the cash to buy and in some cases like Spurs are also willing to pay the salaries if need be to get them, something I think Everton , Villa and Sunderland wont.
Moyes knows this and he can only build a team from youth upwards .
We unfortunately cant compete even with the likes of Spurs, Villa Sunderland et al in the transfer market or salary league.
I can only see one outcome - we will ultimately loose our better players over the next few years - Arteta,Yakubu,Lescott, Jags , Rodwell, Pinnear and possibly Baxter.
8 Posted 25/07/2009 at 14:13:19
The fact is that we haven’t got loads of money, and I would rather see Moyes take his time than rush a deal. He has picked up so many gems at various stages of the transfer windows, Jags, Lescott, Baines, Arteta, Pienarr, Cahill etc. We need to have faith. And with respect to our rivals, sure Manchester city have spent, but they have an bottomless pot of gold and are not comparable to the normal football team. However, our nearest rivals last season, Aston Villa, have lost two of their most influential players in Laursen to retirement and Barry to Man city, they’ve also lost yet another defender in Knight to Bolton. The only player they’ve signed so far is Stewart Downing, a player who is out injured until december and plays in the game position as their best player, Ashley Young. Spurs so far have added two unproven youth right backs, despite having three senior right backs at the club. Fulham have added Risse, an unproven midfielder in the prem and West ham have added no one of note. And with respect to the top four, the premiership Champions have lost their best player in Ronaldo and an exceptional talent in Tevez and have replaced them with an injury prone Owen and Valencia, who is not worth half of his price tag. Liverpool have added a rightback, Chelski have added a young striker, a reserve goalie (due to him being english) and one exceptional player in Zhirkov. Arsenal have added an unproven centre defender and have lost their best goal scorer to Man city.
A multitude of clubs haven’t been spending. Three of the other top six have lost key players. There is no need to panic, we are in a recession, that should be considered, and if it wasn’t for Manchester city and Madrid, this summer would have been one of the quietist for a very long time. But we have added Jo, a top quality striker, we’ve added a couple of extremely highly rated youth players and Moyes will no doubt add a rightback, another midfielder and central defensive cover before the window closes. But have patience.
9 Posted 26/07/2009 at 06:15:13
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