One thing I remember about being a Premier League team was the outlandish transfer rumours that would start at the end of each season. Fans would demand the departure of Ian Harte (too slow) and yearn for the signing of players who would end up at Inter or Real Madrid! It was interesting that Harte was one of only 3 players for whom we got a fee when the big firesale happened after relegation – and he has in the years since almost always played at a higher level than the club he left behind.
So I take the transfer demands of fellow fans with a pinch of salt – they are usually unrealistic and often wrong. For example, I noticed only last weekend the name of Izale McLeod mentioned playing for the team 2nd bottom in the league, just three years ago fans were touting him as the solution to getting Leeds back to the top! Charlton paid £1.1million for him and paid him £5000 per week. Economic madness and a total failure – ring a bell?
Leeds have made some terrible big name signings over the years, Tomas Brolin and, well I’m not going to list them, we can all remember Seth Johnson, Fowler et al.
So the silly season begins this weekend with the daft transfer window concept still in place.
Personally I hope that we don’t sign or lose anyone.
Not very ambitious I know and the modern trend is to trade players like stocks and shares, but I think Simon is better off not signing anyone, just keeping the squad he has, including want-away Bradley Johnson.
Leeds United have already been linked with Aston Villa defender Richard Dunne, former Leeds defender Jonathan Woodgate, and Manchester City’s Michael Johnson.
Where are the funds going to come from to sign and pay these players, all of whom could get a Premier League starting place?
If we take them on loan and get promoted what do we do next season? Clubs may lend us players but are unlikely to sell to what has become a competitor in the same league.
Whether we are ready for the consequences of promotion or not is a different topic which I’ll ignore in this article.
It is far more sensible for Simon Garyson to try and meld what he has into a working defence. We need to take time to build a squad that will eventually win promotion and form the nucleus of a side that can stay in the Premier League and to avoid a ritual weekly humiliation, such as that suffered by Derby recently.
I think it is essential that we keep Bradders. It’s easy for fans to say he’s replaceable but all I know is that we are where we are with him in the squad. Who is to say what the knock-on effect of his leaving will be? We do not know what a player’s personality brings to the psyche of a squad or their training sessions; we only see what goes on on the pitch.
We currently stand in a play-off position with the existing squad and their reward should be our faith and trust that they can maintain that level of performance. Let us not underestimate the entertainment factor that we have brought to the Championship season. Not just our brilliant fans, of course, but the the number of goals per game. Admittedly the goals have not always been in the right end but for our first season back in the Championship I’ll settle for entertainment. Let the stress and pain caused by expectation of promotion wait for next season.