Newcastle United’s Transfer Market Policy Is Sound
There are few around who share this view, and I may well be castigated for saying it, but I support Newcastle United’s buying policy in the transfer market.
Considering the fact that we have an apparent buffoon like Joe Kinnear as our Director of Football, and have yet to make a signing of note, why would I make such a statement?
The truth is that it’s far easier to sign players of dubious quality, and at the wrong price and on inflated wages, than it is to get rid of them. Those who look enviously at the business that Sunderland have done in a very short space of time know absolutely nothing about the quality of the players that have been bought.
Instead, they take the view that signings – any signings – are a good thing, whilst a lack of signings is bad. This is despite the fact that sides (like QPR) who have taken a scattergun approach to the transfer market generally get very poor value for money and struggle to then move those players on once the bubble has burst.
Newcastle United made mistakes in last year’s Summer transfer window but they did a very good job in the Winter period. Players like Sissoko, Haidara, Gouffran, Debuchy & Yanga-Mbiwa were all great additions and vastly improved the quality of the squad, at bargain prices to boot. There were many arguing that we should have gone for British talent like Danny Graham but the truth was that he was overpriced and nowhere near good enough to replace a striker of Demba Ba’s quality.
Those who think that our relegation problems were down to the French contingent conveniently ignore the fact that the squad that went down so meekly in 2009 included Nolan, Carroll, Harper, Given, Barton, Smith, Guthrie, Duff, Ryan Taylor, Steve Taylor, Butt and Ameobi.
Players can beat their chests with as much passion as you like but if they don’t have the quality required, they don’t have it. Rallying war cries only get you so far before more talented opposition then play you off the park. Of those that have moved on in this transfer window , like Perch and Simpson, can anyone seriously suggest that they are in the wrong division now that they are playing in the Championship?
Newcastle undoubtedly need reinforcements in the striking department but we have a much higher quality squad than we’ve had in a long time and that is largely down to the scouting abilities of Graham Carr. Alan Pardew did his best to make a pig’s ear from a silk purse with players like Sissoko and Anita but even he must now know that we have to play to the technical strength of our squad, rather than try and launch the ball from Williamson to Shola.
Given his preference for playing Perch over Anita last season, and the fact that he thought Mascherano and Tevez weren’t good enough for West Ham, I wouldn’t want him anywhere near our decision making process when it comes to buying players. Kinnear offers very little but, in Graham Carr, we have a genuine asset and we should let him get on with things.
Newcastle can’t afford to make too many mistakes in the transfer market if it is to be operated on a sustainable model and I, for one, would rather that we got the right player in at the right price than make panic buys that have us suffering the repercussions for years to come.
Our model should be Borussia Dortmund, Schalke, Benfica or Porto – not QPR, Sunderland or Manchester City. Those teams have been built on a sensible transfer policy and great football as a result.
There are undoubtedly problems with the Ashley regime (his lack of foresight in what the Newcastle brand could be worth, for example) but transfer policy isn’t one of them. A few years ago, we relied on Willie McKay for our ‘scouting’ network and where did that get us? Almost bust, that’s where.
The transfer window finishes on 2nd September, not 31st July. Let’s see what our squad looks like on that date before hitting the panic button, eh?
You can follow Waseem on Twitter @WShak1
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