So, are NUFC done in the transfer market or could they still be looking?
Remember there’s still a route or two to bring in a player – notably from the Championship, with the EFL window still open and closing at 5pm today.
Premier League clubs that couldn’t get big business done by 11pm last Monday might well be looking into that avenue and trying to tap some of the talent that exists there.
Two of the biggest second tier targets being Joe Rodon from Swansea and Saïd Benrahma from Brentford, with Norwich also having a few talented players still on their hands in Todd Cantwell and Emi Buendia.
Could that be a market that we look into? Or perhaps the Free Agent Market is the way to go.
Personally, I think that “free agents” are often so for good reason but then you look again at some of the talent that was available for “just” wages.
A perfect example being Germany’s World-Cup Winning goal scorer Mario Goetze who left Borussia Dortmund in the summer and yesterday signed for PSV Eindhoven. People said he wasn’t a Premier League player but at “just” wages was it worth a gamble.
Let’s look at some of the others that are available:
- Mario Mandzukic
- Daniel Sturridge
- Nathaniel Clyne
- Danny Welbeck
- Mario Balotelli
- Alexander Pato
- Ezequiel Garay
- Shinji Kagawa
- Alen Halilovic
- Antonio Valencia
- Kwadwo Asamoah
- Jack Wilshere
- Samir Nasri
- Diafra Sakho
- Yohan Cabaye
- Ander Iturraspe
- Gael Clichy
- Fabio Borini
- Fredy Guarin
- Steven Defour
- Giannelli Imbula
- Ivan Strinjic
- Oumar Niasse
- Jonathan De Guzman
Would any of them enhance or bolster our current squad? Well, what I thought I’d do was look at those under 30 and in positions where I think we need a bit of strengthening and seemingly quite a few pundits do too.
All of which led me to cut the list down quite a bit although there was one or two to add. I then looked at the positions where I still think we’re a bit short.
I start at Left Back. People have talked about what happens if Callum Wilson gets injured but what happens if that happened to Jamal Lewis?! So, here’s three names all of which are free agents with a bit about them.
Victor Alvarez is a Spaniard that was at Espanyol and had a loan spell at Arsenal Tula in Russia. He’s aged 27 and can also play left midfield/winger. Martin Frydek a Czech Republic international and aged 28 who last played for Sparta Prague and then Frenchman Theo Pellenard aged 26 whose last club was SCO Angers. Now the question to ask is are they better than Lazaar who’s still at The Club. I think they are!
I’m ignoring Centre Back. Dummett, Clark and Lascelles are virtually all fit again so I think another one there might be a little late. We probably needed someone before the first game of the season perhaps not so much now.
So, I’ll move into Centre Midfield. I think there’s a place for another one in there especially a box-to-box attacking option. So, I throw in for my first one a player we’ve been linked with before and who’s still available as a free agent. Arnaud Lusamba the former Nice player is only 23 years old and still seems worth a punt. What about Alen Halilovic a Croatian who was rated in the £10m class and who went to AC Milan. He’s been released and is only 24 so perhaps needs a new challenge. Also aged 24 is Wilfred Kaptoum whose last club was Real Betis and is available. My last offering is perhaps one that we’d reject because he didn’t make it at Fulham but at 28 Pajtim Kasami is a full Swiss international that last played at FC Sion and is looking for a new club.
Okay, now let’s get the elephant out of the room. A backup striker to Callum! He’s injury prone, but Daniel Sturridge would offer more than Andy Carroll for me, being much more of a goal threat when fit. Then there’s my left-field option an Argentinian striker called Juan Cruz Kaprof who is only 25 and would like a move to Europe.
Then there’s Jack Wilshere, Danny Welbeck and Nathaniel Clyne from the original list that are all under age 30. Could any of them do a job? For me, they’re all too injury prone to be considered – especially when they’ve demand big bucks.
Remember too that in a little over two months the window re-opens and it’s a “free” for all again, but in the meantime perhaps there’s a bargain or two still to be had.