Alan Pardew has said that he doesn’t expect any of our main players to be leaving club in the next transfer window, unless a silly money offer comes in for one of our stars.
The statement comes hot on the heels of renewed interest in Cheik Tiote from Chelsea who are said to be pondering a £20 million bid in January.
Last January said the same thing about Andy Carroll, and we all know how that ended up! However the justification for it at the time was that we weren’t in a position as a club to turn down the deal and he warned that it could happen again. However that stance has changed.
When asked about any potential sale of his star players, Pardew told the Mirror: “It is going to cost a hell of a lot of money, a hell of a lot of money because we’re in that position now.”
“I think any of our players that get linked to other clubs, those clubs are going to need to know they’ll need to pay a shed load of money to get anyone out of this football club.”
He added: “I don’t envisage anyone going out in this window.”
“But if a club, one of the top clubs, comes in and wants to pay way, way over the odds we’ll have to look at it.”
To me this is the acid test. Are we going to try and build a team? Or are we going to cash in and attempt to replace any outgoing players? That is the question isn’t it?
I don’t think many people will argue that every player has a price, and if one of the top teams comes in for one of our players the likelihood is that the player will want to move. It’s part of football.
However this cost-cutting needs to have an upside somewhere. We’ve been told how great we are doing financially and how we are on course to break even so there should be no reason to sell. Time will tell of course.
Pardew then moved on to incoming players and gave us a bit of an idea of what we can expect in January.
“We have looked at the African Nations Cup and we have looked at the next window,” said Pardew. “I think the maximum we would do is two players in. That would be our maximum. Then if anyone left, it would be a third.”
So the upshot of this is that we don’t need to sell players now unless it is for silly money. Perhaps now we can start to build a team and squad with a view to improving longer term and not worry so much about players leaving?
I remain sceptical. Actions are louder than words!