Yesterday, Ange confirmed the worst kept secret in Scottish football; that he wants his new players in before the end of the winter break. Ideally, he said, he’d like to “shoot for the moon” and have them in place before the game against the team across the city, but failing that he insists that he wants them in as early as possible to integrate them into the side.
I wrote a piece the other day about how those deals could be done in time to get players in for that game, if that’s what the manager wants. It was good to hear him confirm that it’s something he’s been thinking about, even if he believes it’s a stretch.
Ange is a man who learns from past experience, and the one he wants to avoid a repeat of is the one he had in the summer when the team was still being pulled together as the games were kicking off.
He wants these guys in early so he can work with them and introduce them to their team-mates whilst the absence of games gives him the chance to.
The window is small. The sooner the signings are completed the better.
He seems to know who he wants and in what positions and it’s clear that a lot of the legwork has already been done. Getting things over the line is usually the part we drag out.
Not this time though. Not with Ange actively involved in the work to get the deals done, and not when we’ve had more lead-time than we ever have.
There’s no reason why these deals can’t be secured and the players in the door early in the window. If other opportunities arrive to strengthen the squad further, then great; if not we’ll at least have got the business done.
Transfer windows are usually exciting. I am hoping that this one will be incredibly dull.
I am hoping for a burst of activity at the start and then a long spell of nothing at all whilst the new players fit into the system and we see what Ange’s first season team looks like.
None of us wants this dragged out to the last day, as if it’s the drama we value and not seeing the squad develop as it should. The manager has made his own feelings clear.