Transfer Window Round-up: What Price Loyalty?

Sissoko

As the transfer window slams shut for yet another summer we finally know who is in, who is out and who, and despite all of the press speculation, will now have to slum it in the second tier of English Football, at least for the next few months.

As Toon fans, we expect our players to give their all without question and commit to a lifetime of servitude at the club. They are expected to put their limbs on the line almost daily, and when those limbs are broken, questions will be asked if the applied bandage isn’t stained with Black and White blood.

We expect effort and we expect loyalty. Fall short in either of these two areas and there’s no point in wasting the money on the “Larn Yersel’ Geordie” books unless you think it will help in negotiating a discount from the taxi driver on the way back to Newcastle Airport.

We think we know all about loyalty. We have turned up every week, come rain or more rain, and been force fed a diet of apathy and ineptitude that would make Victor Meldrew go on hunger strike; cheering a front line that between them couldn’t finish off a packet of Chocolate Hobnobs; witnessed the tactical genius of a five year old playing Snap – and we still come back for more!

But what about loyalty from the players?

The average professional footballer’s first priority, just like a normal human being, has to be money in the bank, and from that point of view I suspect that every professional footballer would privately admit that they are completely mercenary.

Would you turn down the chance to go do the same job across the road for an extra two hundred and fifty quid a week out of a sense of loyalty? Yeah, right!

Professional footballers are the same but the benefits more tangible. Wijnaldum’s pay rise for  moving to Liverpool was enough to buy him 2 Range Rovers a month.

In my younger playing days as a goalkeeper I changed Sunday league teams once because the new team’s pitch was nearer the pub. It’s all about priorities!

Personally, I don’t blame them. Professional footballers have an earning career that spans no more than maybe fifteen years, after which a limited few get into football related jobs such as coaching or punditry, but for 98% of them it’s back to reality with no real world qualifications.

They don’t have long to fill up that bank account – so can we blame them for trying to milk it?

The other driving force for a select few is their desire to play for their country. Or depending on their skill level and passport, maybe their grandmother’s country.

OK –  so 2 different blogs are reporting that you are in with a chance of a call up for the national team, and a couple of decent performances should do it. Then it all goes pear shaped and your team gets relegated.

Next season your competition for that last available midfield squad spot gets to showcase his skills against the likes of Ronaldo, Messi and Neymar on global TV beamed to billions, while you can look forward to getting your name in the local paper, proving yourself against hordes of freshly promoted plumbers, bakers and car mechanics who still believe that Vinnie Jones is the epitome of grace, style and sophistication.

So, Championship or EPL? A bit of a no brainer really.

One thing I’ve never understood about loyalty is the one-way nature of the concept.

A couple that I drink with met a few years ago at a business lunch. Both were married, but following a brief lust filled tour of the local hotel circuit they moved in together.

Oh dear, says I. That doesn’t bode well for the future, does it? If history has shown us anything it has to be that neither of you can be trusted to commit to a long term relationship, with each as likely as the other to run off with the next best thing that comes along. Sound familiar?

It’s all fine and dandy for a player to leave his club to come to ours, which according to our fanatical standards demonstrates no loyalty whatsoever to the previous club, but we do expect an immediate improvement in behaviour once he walks through the gates at SJP.

A little hopeful maybe? A little unrealistic? A little one-sided?

The other thing, of course, is that we only require loyalty from good, dedicated players. I suspect there would have been a sea of Black and White clad fans waiting to assist Sissoko in his quest for betterment. “White Hart Lane? Can’t miss it mate, follow me!”

Whether it’s the occasional bout of fisticuffs with the visiting fans, or less than charitable chants about Wayne Rooney sexual exploits it seems a little bizarre that we should expect such high standards from our players when we could never come close to achieving those levels of ethical perfection ourselves.

At the moment we are a stepping stone, and that’s how we get our best players. On their way up. If we are lucky and Rafa lives up to the hype, in a couple of years we might even be able to hang onto a few.

It was interesting to hear Steven Gerrard say recently that Rafa was the best tactician that he ever worked with. I found this rather odd – surely Gerrard played for England when McClaren was in charge?

79 thoughts on “Transfer Window Round-up: What Price Loyalty?

  1. Rob – thanks for the article mate. There’s some bits I disagree with though mate, and this article link helps to highlight my point:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-3456453/Mind-gap-Premier-League-wages-soar-average-salaries-2014-15-season-1-7million-rest-creep-along.html

    An average PL football earns £1.7m p/a (around £33k p/w) and £25.5m over that 15yr career you refer to.
    I’m not sure they will need to return to the ‘real world’ with that bank balance.
    A Championship player – £325k p/a (that’s £6,250 p/w) and £4,825m over their 15yr career – again, not too shabby.

    To put that into comparison to ‘the real world’ – the average annual UK salary is £26,500. If you earned that for 40yrs you’d make just over £1m.

    I don’t expect any player to be loyal. Every player should either want to play at the highest level they possibly can – or to move to a club that can offer more regular football than they are getting at the one they are at.
    What I don’t like is when players disrespect the club they have joined. We saw it with Michael Owen, who joined NUFC and spoke about how it increased his England chances. We saw it with Cabaye & Debuchy – both wanting moves to Arsenal (Cabaye then moving to PSG) and now with Sissoko, who loved Arsenal but moved to Spurs when Everton were pulling out all the stops for him.
    Yet on the flip side, you have the likes of Perez who is being linked with the big Spanish clubs, but has the respect to not get drawn into it and say his focus is on NUFC – but more importantly he shows that on the pitch too.

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  2. Sharpy17 – Cheers for the comment mate.
    Unfortunately the “averages” you quote are, and always have been, seriously skewed by the select few such as Rooney, Aguero, DaSilva, Hazard etc who are pulling in 10 times what some other Prem players are getting.
    This distorts the comparison with the Championship salaries by virtue of the fact that it’s the “second” division there are no similarly high earners to artificially inflate the averages.
    If anything it reinforces my belief that if a player can improve his lot by getting from the Championship to the Prem then if he’s good enough – good luck to him.

    However, you are spot on with the disrespecting the club point. Sissoko has been a bit of a **** all along and we’re well shot of him. People are lining up to play for the team, we can do without players who just turn up for the cash.

    As for Perez – fair play to the lad for being so professional about it all.
    The cynic in me might suggest that Perez is smart enough to realise that while there was a realistic chance that Sissoko would get away, maybe the interest in Perez was more fabricated by the press and if he did manage to get a move it would be for a lower salary.
    I doubt that 13 goals in 77 appearances is the kind of stuff that would have Barca banging down the door to get him.

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  3. Cheers Rob and welcome to the blog, nice read and you bring up some interesting points. I have to say I have little to zero sympathy with any footballers and what they may or may not earn over a 15 year period. They are doing a job that your average guy would give his right arm to do. They are paid very well to do that job and most will earn a tidy sum over their playing career which if invested wisely will see them well into old age. Not so for the likes of me and most folk i’ll wager. It boils my **** when I hear all this talk of short careers and how they have to earn what they can while they can. Bullcrap, with the spare time they have they can do a college course or open university course in sports sciences or similar and put back into the sport they profess to love. Or maybe train to do something outside of football when they are done. There will always be footballers who **** their earnings up the wall for what ever reason, whether it be drugs or gambling but I can’t feel sorry for them I’m afraid. Robin Williams once said ‘Cocaine is gods way of telling you ,you earn to much money!’ When you look at what they live in and drive, many are living beyond their means, losing all touch with the ‘real world’ and with it their sense of perspective and loyalty. Money is ruining our once beautiful game, at the end of the day is it so very much to ask that a very well paid individual pulls on our strip with pride and gives the 100% every game?

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  4. Rob – I accept the elite PL salaries are off the scale, but that is why I included the average Championship players wage as well as the PL. The average of £6,250 will be on realistic & shows that an average Championship footballer will earn 4 times was much as your average Joe in their professional life.

    Don’t get me wrong mate, I’m all for the likes of Jamie Vardy getting his just rewards for working hard and proving his ability. Same goes for any people.
    It’s not the players as much as the agents and advisors that are the problem IMO. Blowing smoke up their arse and whispering in their ear to manufacture moves for the players they represent for their own gain. I think it’s them who are all for the financial gain.

    But your average player with an average agent, will still do better than your average Joe – of that I am in no doubt.

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  5. I have no problem with players wanting to maximize their earning potential – as you say, Rob, we all generally do the same. On top of money, working conditions have to be taken into consideration, as well – for example, better medical staff can extend a player’s career and location can affect a player’s overall happiness.

    What I do have a big problem with is when players undermine the club and act a prat like Sissoko did. Wijnaldum, Janmaat, and even Tiote now, all provide an example of how you can have higher ambitions while still respecting your current club. Have an honest conversation with the manager, but do it behind closed doors and at least pretend to have some respect for the fans.

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  6. icedog:
    Farhad Moshir says they didnt want Siko at the club

    Odd thing to say considering they bid for Sissy and had a jet waiting to collect him until he decided to join Spurs. Sounds like damage limitation to me.

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  7. Charlie Prince:
    I have no problem with players wanting to maximize their earning potential – as you say, Rob, we all generally do the same. On top of money, working conditions have to be taken into consideration, as well – for example, better medical staff can extend a player’s career and location can affect a player’s overall happiness.

    What I do have a big problem with is when players undermine the club and act a prat like Sissoko did. Wijnaldum, Janmaat, and even Tiote now, all provide an example of how you can have higher ambitions while still respecting your current club. Have an honest conversation with the manager, but do it behind closed doors and at least pretend to have some respect for the fans.

    Charlie Prince – you say ” better medical staff can extend a player’s career”

    Why is it our medical staff can’t extend our players’ season past bloody November?

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  8. Rob Brown: Charlie Prince – you say ” better medical staff can extend a player’s career”

    Why is it our medical staff can’t extend our players’ season past bloody November?

    That’s a good question. And perhaps an answer as to why some players might want to leave.

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  9. Sharpy, just a point on footballers finances. Assume that they do earn £30k per week. Given agents and the revenue they will be lucky to see half of that. Lets assume they invest 10% of that for their future they are still living off well over £10,000 per week. Their investments assuming they are still there at the end of their careers are only likely to be possibly 1 million at best 2, which will give them an income of about £1000 per week maybe a bit more, before taxes etc. Well above the national average, but not extrodinary, even I’ve earned that a few times, but unfortunately not consistently. It is probably less than 10% of what they are used to and that will take a lot of adjustments. Yes I can and do live off less than that, but the point that their career is short is valid. Good investment skills rarely go hand in hand with footballers however.

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  10. Kim – my wife is an Everton supporter. Yesterday, I went home and told her we had accepted their bid for Sissoko and her first response was “Isn’t that the guy who’s a ****? I don’t want him.” She was pretty happy when I finished the story and told her that he went missing and didn’t get on the private jet.

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  11. It’ll be interesting to see if a “European” training philosophy can reduce our traditionally horrific Christmas injury list.

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  12. Rob, Rafa did a question and answer thing today and talked about how they had revamped and changed the medical set up for the better. Will be interesting to see if this new regime bares fruit.

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  13. Charlie Prince:
    Kim – my wife is an Everton supporter. Yesterday, I went home and told her we had accepted their bid for Sissoko and her first response was “Isn’t that the guy who’s a ****? I don’t want him.” She was pretty happy when I finished the story and told her that he went missing and didn’t get on the private jet.

    Charlie, they definitely dodged a bullet imo, glad Spurs have him and not Everton. Levy deserves him.

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  14. Kim, I agree 100%. My only regret is that Sissoko’s whinging ended up working and he gets to play Champions League football this year. It would have been so much sweeter if he had ended up at a bottom-half PL club. Or better yet, a team that ends up going down at the end of the year.

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  15. Charlie, yeah I know what you mean, but something tells me he won’t perform consistently where ever he goes. I just think he’s a big game tv player, they’ll see him perform if selected for CL games but fall short in the bread and butter league games. Though I don’t doubt he’ll be all guns blazing in the first month or so. Gini is doing at Pool the same as he did with us and not turning up away from home already you only have to look at Pool chat forums to see that. Two very unreliable footballers there.

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  16. Kim – Hope he knows what he’s doing.

    It seems that every manager right the way back to Souness has “changed things for the better” and if anything things have just worsened.

    Did I miss the annual announcement stating that we have a new fitness guru who is going to put everything right?

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  17. Rafa has been talking about squad rotation again today but with the International Break he has the opportunity to put out his strongest side. I wonder what it is? I know you don’t necessarily pick the same team home and away but based on form, fitness and quality this is my guess.

    Selz

    Anita MBemba Lascelles Dummett

    Ritchie Shelvey Hayden Diame

    Gayle Mitro

    The odd one out is Perez, but I think he would be first sub, or play wide right with Diame taking Shelvey’s spot.

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  18. Interesting read Rob. However, from the title, I expected more of a “State of the B&W Nation” and where we stand regarding players in and out rather than a treatise on human nature and the role of money, sex and gluttony 🙂

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  19. what a great salesman Rafa is been kidding everyone along,he has now said Gino,Siko,Jammatt had to go as there was problems in the dressing with them and he needs a strong team sprit in there,you little tinker Rafa kept that close to your chest 🙄

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  20. Some information from Football365 on Sunderland’s new signing, NDong:

    “The club-record signing of Didier Ndong did little to placate fans. French outlet RMC Sport reported that representatives of his club Lorient ‘almost fainted’ at the size of Sunderland £13m offer. After all, this is a player who ranked, in terms of per-game stats in Ligue Un last season: 22nd for tackles (2.8), 73rd for interceptions (2.2), 45th for passes (50.5), and 151st for key passes (0.5).”

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  21. BTW: Pards has assembled a very good first team, I hope he knows what to do with it. Not sure if he will get the time for them to gel as his record is 2 wins in his last 24 league games. The other problem is that Benteke is very streaky and Remy gets injured. On paper they are mid-table, so, over to you Alan.

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  22. Eric Sykes:
    Some information from Football365 on Sunderland’s new signing, NDong:

    “The club-record signing of Didier Ndong did little to placate fans. French outlet RMC Sport reported that representatives of his club Lorient ‘almost fainted’ at the size of Sunderland £13m offer. After all, this is a player who ranked, in terms of per-game stats in Ligue Un last season: 22nd for tackles (2.8), 73rd for interceptions (2.2), 45th for passes (50.5), and 151st for key passes (0.5).”

    😆

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  23. I can see some tough decision coming up front. 4-1-4-1 for me away to Derby.

    Usual back 4, Hayden holding with Shelvey and Diame attacking in middle, Ritchie wide right, Gayle wide left attacker and Mitro through the middle.

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  24. Rob, good read. Always nice when si.ebidy comes along with a different point of view and creates debate.

    I don’t blame players for wanting more dosh or for being ambitious. I’m not sure many fans do. What fans take exception to is players that don’t appreciate what they have got and go ‘running their mouth’ every chance they get about being a class above their current club and teammates. That kind of public display is only ever going to result in a fractured dressing room and angry fans.

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  25. Other players managed to behave properly while waiting to be sold. Wini was an example. He was useless in away games and I don’t see him producing any earth shattering performances for Liverpool but at least he had a smile on his face and trained properly. Le Grande Sulk was just that. He behaved as if he was 6 years old. Let’s see what he can do for Spurs. For me he’s a poor example to youngsters everywhere and I have no well wishes for him.

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  26. We did really, really well in the window. Thirty mill in the bank.
    And we got that packet of salted peanuts for Riviere as well. Let’s not forget that…..

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  27. We have got a very rough set of fixtures for September. If we can come out of that around the top 4 or 5 we are laughing for October.

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  28. Shamrock:
    We have got a very rough set of fixtures for September. If we can come out of that around the top 4 or 5 we are laughing for October.

    apart from a couple of teams mate its as bad as the PL every game is a tough game everyone wants to beat the toon they lift their game 20%

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  29. I’m excited to see all the new players integrated into the squad. Rafa is getting all kinds of tips on new management strategies at that meeting as well. We’re going to be top drawer now with plenty of pace, bags of effort and no whingers left to speak of!

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  30. GeordieTwo:
    I’m excited to see all the new players integrated into the squad. Rafa is getting all kinds of tips on new management strategies at that meeting as well. We’re going to be top drawer now with plenty of pace, bags of effort and no whingers left to speak of!

    one thing we must be very happy about imo mate is how really well Penfold has worked hand in hand with Rafa at the same time keeping his head below deck,what a nice change turned out a lot better than some of the waste of space chairman we had to put up with,dont know your thoughts on it mate

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  31. Have to agree ice mate. I wasn’t too hopeful about Penfold but he seems to be getting the job done now. As long as he stays in the background, doesn’t go to home matches, doesn’t show his ugly mug around the Toon, doesn’t encourage Mike to come to our home matches and does what he’s told by Rafa I’m reasonably happy mate…..

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  32. The tide has changed. We’re on the up and up. Now to grab the Champs by the scruff of the neck……

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  33. I suggested when Rafa was hired that Charnley had realised he had been led down the garden path by Carr and would throw him under the bus if push came to shove. Ashley is loyal but someone had to pay for Schteve and Charnley has gone back to his knitting. He has actually turned out to be a much better accountant/administrator/negotiator than any of us could have expected given his previous. Maybe all he needed was Rafa’s experience and guiding hand rather than Carr and Ashley’s gambling natures. He is an accountant after all and they don’t tend to be risk takers.

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  34. Eric, Penfold and whoever have done a very canny job of getting in good seasoned international players, and selling them on for a profit. That has been the toon remit, and they have followed through on it big time, with Sissoko, Wijnaldum both sold on for a massive profit.
    That Charnley and Rafa have managed to bring in a bunch of journeyman players to replace them wasn’t really too difficult a task, plus he didn’t manage to hang onto the best of them all in Townsend, actually losing money on the bloke.
    We’ll see whether the huge amount of new players are any good pretty soon, we have to go up this season, anything else with the massive resources and top manager will be a MASSIVE embarassment..

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  35. The players are invariably in it to make as much money as they can and enjoy their football. Loyalty and badge kissing are secondary..

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  36. Remember after the January window that Ashley said the cupboard was bare and that all of the money had been spent and we could only spend what was earned? Quite a few of us wondered how this would play when we were relegated and stuck with our massive wage bill. The parachute payments would cover a lot of it but there would have still been a shortfall with the squad we had.

    I think they have done a masterful job of cutting the wage bill to suit our current financial situation and to balance the books in terms of transfers in and out. We knew we needed a squad overhaul and to get rid of sicknotes and that is what has happened. There are very few star players in the Championship and actually very few future star players. We probably have the nearest there is at the moment despite Munich Mags misgivings – Mitro, Perez, Shelvey and Ritchie should tear up this league.

    The most important thing for a relegated club to avoid is a financial meltdown. It takes years to recover, look at Leeds and Blackburn. Rafa and Charnley have achieved that and we still have the most expensive and (probably) most talented squad the Championship has ever seen. Hopefully, this will translate to immediate promotion, but if not, our payroll is under control and there are more years of parachute payments if needed.

    We won’t need them 🙂

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  37. Off the top of my head I will list players we have that have done OK in the PL, and are NOT Championship journeymen:

    Elliot
    Gamez (ex-Athletico)
    Yedlin
    MBemba
    Dummett
    Anita
    Shelvey
    Ritchie
    Mitro
    Perez

    Of these, only Gamez is at the letter stages of their careers. I totally understand where MM is coming from but I think he is selling a few of our players short and some of the others are unknowns at this stage – like Hayden, Lascelles and Aarons.

    We may not be equipped to be in the PL anymore, but we are not in the PL anymore. And I am sure that we all agree that in The Championship it is a good idea to have a few bruisers like Clark, Murphy and Hanley.

    I am not saying we have the perfect squad but we seem to have some quality to go along with Championship experience.

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  38. Eric, I think we have a good mix of PL pros and Championship specialist as it were, each can learn from each other. I see no reason why we shouldn’t do well, but you can never discount team spirit and other shall we say, lesser sides could do very well on spirit alone.

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  39. The buyout on Townsend was supposedly more than we paid. We wouldn’t have got him without that buyout and quite a few said we had overpaid until he started to put in good performances. 12 million for a player cast out to the Spurs reserves seemed a lot at the time so a buyout of 14 million probably didn’t seem too much of a risk.

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  40. We’re going to be fine lads and lasses. Just fine. Now relax and enjoy this well deserved international break. Read something. Potter about in the garden. Think of ways we could spend 30M. 😉

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  41. A lot of people laughed at the Townsend signing and said he was an English Obertan..I remember and in particular Sharpy flying his flag from day 1 and he turned out to be all we hoped for.

    I guess the lesson here is you have to trust mine and Sharpe’s judgement. This current squad is just about the best we could hope for given our current situation and we WILL be back in the PL next season with a squad that should be nowhere near relegation come the seasons end. Keep the faith! ??

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  42. MM brought up Townsend and since it is International week, I will have a little final rant about Mr. Roy (I already had one about Rooney). Mr. Roy did not take Townsend when he had said he would only take in-form and fit players. It was damning this week when Rooney said that he took it upon himself to take corners after Kane had been taking them in practice and Mr. Roy never questioned it, just like he never questioned Wayne when he said he was now a midfielder. Shows what a weak willed loser Mr. Roy really is.

    The press were lauding him before the tournament as perhaps not England’s greatest Manager but tactically astute and dignified. So tactically astute that he couldn’t out-coach and out-wit a dentist. So dignified that he didn’t even want to show up for the press conference after Iceland and had a pre-prepared exit statement.

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  43. You are wrong G2. Here is a list of the “jourmeymen” we have signed:

    Selz – Belgian international wanted by several PL teams

    Ritchie – former Championship player of the year, offered new contract to stay at B-mouth

    Gayle – Palace top scorer in PL

    Gamez – recruited from Athletico Madrid

    Hayden – highly rated by Wenger, PL Hull wanted to sign him after successful loan

    Hanley – experienced Blackburn Captain

    Clark – Irish international with years of PL experience

    Diame – turned down new contract at PL Hull

    Yedlin – no room at Spurs, PL with Mackems

    Murphy – recent top scorer one year in Championship

    Lazaar – ?, but Moroccan international.

    Atsu – LOAN to cover for Aarons’ injury, 2015 ACON player of tournament

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  44. ???? Actually I think we have a fine squad Eric and have said so repeatedly. This squad will do a terrific job in the Champs and if we can bring in 4 or 5 Prem standard players next summer we should be able to finish in the middle of the Prem.

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  45. I am not saying they will all work out, because they never all do. I also know we are not buying from the top drawer but we are not in the top drawer and they will not play in the top drawer this year.

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  46. I can’t see Rooney earning that sort of money for much longer. He said he’ll retire from international football after World Cup 2018, but he’s already gone down hill fast in the last few years IMO. He may only be 30 but I think people forget mileage on the clock as well as outright age. He was playing for Everton at 16 in the Premiership. Many players who are still going at 35/36 maybe didn’t start playing regular first team football until they were 21/22. You must consider mileage as well as age! Rant over. 😀

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  47. Shamrock:
    A lot of people laughed at the Townsend signing and said he was an English Obertan..I remember and in particular Sharpy flying his flag from day 1 and he turned out to be all we hoped for.

    I guess the lesson here is you have to trust mine and Sharpe’s judgement. This current squad is just about the best we could hope for given our current situation and we WILL be back in the PL next season with a squad that should be nowhere near relegation come the seasons end. Keep the faith!

    Sham – I felt all brothers in arms when I read this little post mate ?.

    I think Rafa has given himself a real chance of gaining promotion with the squad he has assembled this summer. The players that needed to go have been moved on – namely Colo, Sissoko and Cisse as well as a lot of deadwood. He has brought in some very decent young players & is adopting a mentality that they have the opportunity to play for possibly the biggest club in their careers.

    The Rafalution can be questioned or mocked, but it’s real and is taking shape. How successful it will be has yet to be seen, but it looks like it could be interesting finding out.

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  48. DJG: the sooner Rooney goes the better. England need (another) new start. Rooney dictating when he will retire is just a joke. If he is in the Man U team come Xmas I will be shocked, or it will say that the rumours that his contract says if he is fit he plays are true.

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  49. Anyone noticed that Rafa has basically signed a whole team?
    Sels
    Yedlin, Hanley, Clark, Lazaar
    Ritchie, Hayden, Diame, Atsu
    Murphy, Gayle
    That is people in their correct positions as well, which never happens. 😯

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  50. Just been looking at the SSN app and they have the 11 free agents team up – some decent players still out there looking for a club.
    One being Junior Hoilett, who was a decent turn at Bburn, but seemed to go off the boil at QPR – but then who hasn’t?!.
    He’s still only 26 and is a LW – I’d be getting the lad in on trial to at least have a look at him. But then if he’s wanting a daft contract he can **** off.

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  51. Oh, and the list I wrote above are arguably not even our best players as Mbemba, Mitro, Anita, Dummett, Shelvey, Perez, Aarons and Elliot are likely to start a lot of games. I just don’t agree that we have a bunch of journeymen.

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  52. DJG: that would actually be a decent training match, your new team against:

    Darlow

    Anita MBemba Lascelles Dummett

    Colback Shelvey Tiote Gouffy

    Perez Mitro

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  53. GeordieTwo – Cheers – been writing for various sites for a while but took a break.

    Happy to be contributing to a community that is a bit more positive than the others.

    As for Sissoko – there’s always going to be one whinger who plays hot and cold in the group,

    Ben Arfa rings a bell.

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  54. I don’t think you can blame a guy for wanting the best money he can command and playing at the best level possible. Ambition is something many on here have wanted for the club, why deny it to a player?

    The thing we can condemn a player for is being petulant, egocentric and not putting in a shift for the team, club or fans. Sissoko seems to have been guilty of all those sins.

    I don’t expect loyalty from a footballer, but I do demand that they play hard for my club and contribute to the team effort, above and beyond their own personal agenda, when they are here. That’s what they are paid to do. That’s what professionals should be doing.

    Sissoko is an arch-****head in my book. Best rid of the man. Let him go the way of Debuchy and the Spanish left back whose name I’ve forgotten, and many more.

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  55. brisvegas:
    I don’t think you can blame a guy for wanting the best money he can command and playing at the best level possible. Ambition is something many on here have wanted for the club, why deny it to a player?

    The thing we can condemn a player for is being petulant, egocentric and not putting in a shift for the team, club or fans. Sissoko seems to have been guilty of all those sins.

    I don’t expect loyalty from a footballer, but I do demand that they play hard for my club and contribute to the team effort, above and beyond their own personal agenda, when they are here.That’s what they are paid to do. That’s what professionals should be doing.

    Sissoko is an arch-****head in my book. Best rid of the man.Let him go the way of Debuchy and the Spanish left back whose name I’ve forgotten, and many more.

    Spot on Bris and you mean Enrique I think ?Last seen disappearing into the ether at Liverpool

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  56. It can’t be Kim, same as if you bought a car for £25000 over 5 years, if you sold after 3 years yes you would have paid £15000 but would still owe another £10000 on the contract you sold and have to clear the balance with the money you got for selling it. They can get away with just putting so much through their accounts each year after buying him, but will still have the total debt of £30000 to either pay over the period or when they sell him. They have to pay full amount over the agreed period or earlier

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  57. There is a rumour that the Luiz back to Cheslea was on the basis that after two years they still owed 36 of the £50 million they paid for him. The deal was to go back to Chelsea with no cash changing hands.

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