You just about rescued it, but boy, that was close. Please send some mails to firstname.lastname@example.org. Pretty please.
Is it too late to cap transfers?
With all this fanfare surrounding Pogba, how much he’ll cost, how much Raiola will get, will United pay upfront, or will they pay in pokemon as and when they catch them, I was wondering if anyone has ever suggested capping transfer amounts. What if, FIFA (yup..them), UEFA, Donald Trump, or whichever evil genius is currently controlling the game decided that the maximum fee paid for a player in a window would be, say, £100m and no club could pay more. This includes agents fees, instalments, bonuses, itunes vouchers, giant foam fingers, haircuts, and whatever else clubs shove into transfer agreements to squeeze out the best possible deal for themselves.
The reason I mention this is because in addition to transparency which is greatly needed in football, the Pogba saga is getting quite tiring for every single fan involved, with a million websites reporting a million different things. It’s clearly foolish to expect the deal be concluded instantly considering how long and drawn out previous world record transfers have been (Ronaldo took over a year, and how many times did Real put up and pull down that ridiculous stage for Bale?) so why not make everyone’s life easier? Additionally, this prevents the market from going crazy because clubs know the maximum amount they can pay, and we don’t have to keep hearing from world famous accountants (cough..Wenger..cough) how £100m is way too much money. It will also help shut down bogus “in the know” twitter accounts clogging up my feed who in fact know naff all.
Obviously, with the way money in football is going it’s highly possible that TV revenue could double or even triple in the next ten years, and this cap can be reviewed regularly at a set period. Alternatively, they could change up the transfer process to the point where a club only has to pay out the players contract and a max increment (£30m seems the average transfer rate) to a club. That will allow players to move more freely, but it will also be exciting and put to bed this notion of player loyalty which we know doesn’t really exist.
What does everyone think?
Pats. I think I’ve used enough brackets already.
4-4-2 your team
What would your team look like if it was 1999 and every team in the PL(Premiership at the time), played a classic, Mike Basset 4-4-fucking-2. See United below. Extra points if you can get the classic big man/small man combo up front. Number 10s to be shunted wide or left out entirely as they “can’t handle the physicality.”
Darmian Jones Smalling . Shaw
Young Carrick Schneiderlin Mata
As you can see Bailly has missed out for not being an English centre half, Micky missed out as I can’t see him in a flat four, and Martial misses out because the AM9 debacle was far too modern. Mata and Young both play on their strong sides as inverted wingers weren’t a thing.
How would your club line up in a bygone age?
Jamie Rowe, Dublin
Arsenal should play three at the back
Looking at the current Arsenal squad, it struck me that Mr Wenger (deity) should go back in time to his original Arsenal team, and play three at the back. Reasons being:
· Gabriel and Mertesacker’s flaws would be better covered up.
· Koscielny loves to charge out on his own, this would suit his game very well.
· Our fullbacks are ripe for wingback roles.
· All our widemen (who contributed very little last season) want to play centrally, this would enable that.
· Sanchez could play up beside Giroud in a role he successfully plays for Chile. Giroud showed in the summer that he works well with a partner, and Sanchez nearer goal has to be something all Arsenal fans want to see.
· The Ox could cover Bellerin, whereas we currently have Chambers there.
· We have a good flock of young centre backs (Bielik, Holding, Chambers) who could get game time whilst surrounded by international centre backs.
· It should help us stop conceding so much room on the counter.
· Ramsey doesn’t work centrally in a two in the 4-2-3-1 formation. This setup would provide better cover for him, allowing him to maximise his attacking talents.
· Sell Walcott and Campbell, and buy the centre forward we want.
So why not?
Players who could flourish under a new manager
Manchester United – Ashley Young
All indications suggest Mourinho will stick with the 4-2-3-1 formation that served him well two seasons ago. The preferred attacking midfield trio could consist of Rooney in the middle, with Martial and Mkhitaryan occupying the wider positions. That is, without question, an extremely attacking ‘3’. There is no player of those three whose main attributes include tracking back, stopping the opposing full-back, or, most importantly for Jose, providing cover for the United full-backs.The trio (lets call them MMR or ‘jab’ for short) go against Jose’s natural conservatism. If results aren’t going well, which player will Jose turn to to shore up that part of the field. Mata? No chance. Fellaini? Possibly. Ashley Young? I reckon so. He has the energy, experience and safety-first approach that could facilitate the balance for the more gifted players to flourish – and all it will need is a sticky patch, or a downturn in results, or perhaps even an injury. The biggest incentive, and this is meant in a complimentary way, is that Young can become Jose’s Park Ji Sung. Him being in contention for an England place by Christmas is not as absurd as it sounds.
Chelsea – Pedro
Pedro isn’t a world-class player, but he is a player who doesn’t look out of place among world class players. That Conte will be playing a 4-4-2 (turning into a 4-2-4 with the ball) could suit the Spaniard. It’s still unclear who he will be competing for the position with – Willian presumably – and most likely one of Moses and Cuadrado. Pedro offers something different from those three. For all Willian’s brilliance last season, he isn’t a natural winger, certainly not a winger who runs to the byline and puts crosses in the box – and with two strikers, that may well be exactly what Conte wants. Pedro, much like Oscar, is known as a player who plays well in a winning side but doesn’t contribute enough when things are going badly. A new system might be what, the clearly very skillful winger needs to kick-start his career.
Everton – Seamus Coleman
If Everton sell both Lukaku and Stones it cannot be argued that they are not a selling club. It will leave Barkley as their main asset and that is a lot of pressure on a player who is yet to play consistently well for the club. But there should be optimism, Koeman has experience losing ‘big players’ and he’ll have considerable money to spend, even if just Stones leaves. Of the players being tipped for huge moves away, one player is absent from such paper talk: Seamus Coleman. The Irishman is twenty-seven and is probably entering the peak of his career. There has been talk of big money transfers in the past but his persona as loyal, and by-all-accounts humble have deterred potential suitors. Koeman will certainly make him integral; and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him unanimously declared as the best right-back in the division at the end of the season. Then, when Manchester United inevitably table that £25 million offer, we’ll see whether Everton truly are a selling club.
Manchester City – Nicholas Otemendi
There have been rumors that both Fabian Delph and Fernandinho will operate in defense for the coming season – my feeling is that Guardiola might attempt that, but will come unstuck. The Premier league is different to the Bundeliga and La Liga and I believe both Delph and Fernandinho would be exposed at centre-half, and the experiment will be short-lived. Vincent Kompany and John Stones, on paper, is a dream defense. It has everything. But dreams don’t always work in reality: Kompany is becoming increasingly injury-prone and Stones is still unproven at the highest level. I expect Nicholas Otemendi to play a considerable amount of football this season, both in the Premier League and the Champions League. He’ll be used to pace of the league now, after a shaky start, and if Pep shows faith in him, he could be the player to disrupt the dream partnership that is Stones and Kompany. Honorable mention too for Raheem Sterling, a player completely bereft of confidence, who nonetheless, Guardiola will adore.
Does it matter if Pogba costs £100 million or £200 million ?
Obscene figures obviously but transfer fees are just one example.
I see it if Pogba costs £100 million, then United will get that back in shirt sales between Pogba and Ibrahimovic alone maybe.
Increased shirt sales mean Adidas are happy and will keep paying the £75 mill per year.
If Pogba helps United win things then the commercial deals increase in value.
So in a sea of obscene figures, the transfer fee could be the least vulgar and they could end up making gravy on this.
Nez, (can’t explain wages but loves gravy) Kent.
Thankfully, Johnny Nic has produced a think piece which unfortunately lost all credibility when he raised the issue of money in the Championship. If he was talking about non-league football his argument would be relevant (maybe). However, suggesting that the levels of money in the Championship means the players are more relatable is demonstrably wrong.
A modest £5,000 a week for a Rotherham player (this is not based on anything approaching fact, purely hypothetical) means a pre-tax annual salary of £260,000. This puts that player comfortably within the top percentile of earners in the UK (although I am working off of stats from a few years ago). That is not relatable whatsoever. They earn more in a month than many do in a year. They aren’t coming to work in V reg KAs, are they?!
I like watching the Championship when it’s on TV, and have been to watch Brighton a few times in the last couple of years; I don’t hate the Championship by any stretch, and agree with most of your arguments (although, given a choice between watching a Championship match or Premier League/Champions League, I would take the latter every time). But to use the money argument is, I think, a lazy comparison to draw; you say it is obscene that a player could cost £2 million, but that chap who plays for your stereotypical working class northern team on £3-5k a week may as well be down the pub with you talking about how ridiculous it is that those Premier league players are driving Lambos, when all he’s got is a shitty R8.
Better? Yes. Relatable? Not even close.