Today Keith Jackson and the Daily Record Sports Department have more egg on their faces than Kirk Broadfoot trying to work a microwave as Brentford confirm that their midfielder Toumani Diagourgaga has signed for Leeds United.
He is the first of two “major targets” Jackson said last week would be unveiled during the course of this one, moves the hack claimed would cement Dave King’s reputation with the Sevco supporters and post notice of his seriousness.
And things may get doubly embarrassing as St Johnstone’s chairman has firmly stated that his club wants to hang on to Michael O’Halloran who Sevco made two offers for a fortnight ago which club insiders immediately labelled “insulting” and “derisory.”
This website revealed that neither of these offers even reached £200,000 … one third of what the club would deem an acceptable starting point for negotiations.
Sevco’s failures on the transfer front have become a source of great amusement for Celtic fans since King took over, with the widely trailed signing of Scott Allan coming to less than nothing as he opted to go to Parkhead, pulling on the Hoops instead of the light blue of the Ibrox club.
Yet these developments feel much more significant, as Mark Warburton’s clear frustration at not already “having his men” grows with the realisation that a club that’s borrowing money from its own supporters groups probably isn’t going to hand him the funds to reach the Champions League quarter finals any time soon.
The press is fond of reminding us of his “City of London credentials”, but they never bother to see that through to it’s natural conclusion; that a guy from such a background probably isn’t going to be fobbed off for long on talk of jam tomorrow.
He can do sums better than any Daily Record sports journalist and knows these ones just don’t add up.
As a manager with a healthy self-regard, and who’s family are still living in England, how long will it be before he starts thinking the grass might be greener on the other side of the border?
How long before he starts to wonder if a club who’s fans engage in sectarian singing, harrasment of journalists and internet stalking and who’s directors and former directors have more criminal charges against them and pending than the bosses of the Five Families might just be more trouble than the line on his CV is worth?
The fans too must surely see this as a major humiliation, after widely praising this “signing” before it was made.
They really did believe King when he said he was bringing transparency to the club, only to see more secrecy surrounding its affairs than ever before.
The de-listing from the Stock Market, with all the attendant consequences that went with it appears to be exactly what King had wanted as there’s no requirement to tell the fans anything at all beyond what Level 5 PR gets into the papers, and King himself thinks they need to know.
Significant funds are clearly not available, otherwise deals like these would have been over the line by now.
Do you remember Rangers?
When they used to get players to come to Ibrox by offering over the odds and sending a private jet to pick them up?
At Sevco they are more likely to offer ginger bottles and a taxi from the airport, after making their incoming “stars” pay for their own meals from an economy class seat.
Yet it is Jackson I thought of first when I heard the player had opted to go elsewhere.
He was so sure that this was a done deal that he trailed it on Twitter and in his ridiculous and widely mocked column on how Scottish football is about to emerge from “a dark winter”.
That article was the subject of widespread derision, including a piece I wrote over on Fields (which you can read at the bottom of this one).
I’d like to know if he’s still convinced by King’s bluster.
Doesn’t this news make him just a teeny weeny bit suspicious that the Bampots might be right about this geezer?
What has he brought to Ibrox except continuing trouble?
Not one penny that’s gone into the football club over the past six or seven months has been identified as coming from his pocket, and he doesn’t even run things day to day, leaving that up to Paul Murray.
This might be a good time for Jackson and others to revise their opinions.
How much more of this embarrassment do they want to take?