With talk of the Fans Form being moved up I have been thinking about some of the claims made by the club in previous meetings, many of which fail to stand up to scrutiny, especially the January transfer window one.
The claim is that we don’t want to do any transfer business in the January window due to a ‘lack of value’.
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There are two reasons that this annoys me as much as it does.
One is that it is valuing a transfer purely in pennies and pounds and completely ignoring the value being offered to fans in performances and hopes for the second half of the season.
The second is that it just is patently not true and our lack of recent business in January has negatively affected the club in financial terms.
If you look at exactly the circumstances of the January signings in the past 6 seasons it becomes very obvious what the goals of the Ashley regime are and the true reason behind the club’s lack of investment in January.
In 2009/10 we were in the Championship and promotion was worth £50m+ to the club in tv revenue etc. We made 4 permanent signings. In 2011/12 we were within touching distance of the Champions League places which would have again been worth £15m+ to the club. We signed Papiss Cisse. In 2012/13 we were in danger of relegation which would have cost the club £50m+. We signed 5 first team players.
All the other seasons we were sat safely in mid-table. Dropping down 5 or 6 places wouldn’t have any major affect on the clubs earnings that season. These seasons we didn’t sign a single permanent player in January. The only problem for them is that they have seriously miscalculated how safe we were this season.
If the players we have signed in January were huge flops you might be able to understand the club’s argument but the players we’ve signed in January have by and large been a success.
Leon Best was sold for double what he was bought, Williamson is still a first choice centre half after 5 seasons, Cisse is still our top goal scorer 3 seasons after he was bought, Sissoko is our most valuable asset, we got our money back for Yanga-Mbiwa, Simpson was first choice right back for 3 years, Haidara has certainly increased in value if we were to sell him, Debuchy was sold after just 1.5 seasons for double what he cost. That’s most of our January signings in the last 6 years.
The fact is the club isn’t talking about being able to sign players for their value in the January transfer window.
Mike Ashley and the board at NUFC don’t care about developing the squad or pushing us as high as we can go, even if they players are available at the right price.
All Mike Ashley and his cronies care about is maintaining the status quo of mid-table finishes.
What they mean by ‘value for money’ is ‘do we need to sign to stay in mid-table’. If that means a half season of disappointment and outright devastation as we lose game after game setting new negative records every season they don’t care.
That’s why we need to drive Mike Ashley out of this great club.
Dreams don’t measure in pennies or pounds, neither does hope or ambition or dignity.
The club see no ‘value for money’ in your pride for your club. They never will do. So I hope you will all continue to get behind the Ashley Out campaign throughout the rest of this season and through the future. Because if we succeed the fans may finally receive ‘value for money’.