No-one ever feels good about taking advantage of a crisis.
Not unless they are sociopathic.
But at a time like that it helps to be dispassionate and to realise that we’re in a ruthless business where not everyone will have scruples or preserve the niceties.
Russian football is in deep, deep crisis as the war with Ukraine rages.
Forget whether you agree that the whole of Russian society should pay for the grotesque crimes of its leader.
Deal with the reality of what’s happening rather than what you might think is right or fair.
The crisis exists. The question is, can we make it work for us?
Because, as I said, we’re in a ruthless business here where every advantage is preyed upon by someone and if you don’t want to do it you are basically fighting with one hand tied behind your back.
Russian football clubs are going to lose every one of their foreign players.
Our responsibility is to ourselves. Normally we might not be able to afford these guys; this is a unique moment where we can take full advantage and we should do so.
One of the players who will be available is Jordan Larsson.
We know that he is quality. We have looked at signing him. He was on the summer shortlist. We are aware of his abilities and the famous name would bring the fans onboard instantly.
The only question as to whether we should do it or not would concern the manager; is this the kind of footballer he would want at the club? Would Jordan Larsson fit into his plans?
The question should be put to Ange. And if he likes it we should strongly consider it.
From all reports, Larsson might well be able to simply walk away from his contract.
He will certainly have other offers. From Germany. From France. From Italy. From Holland. Perhaps from England and Spain. We must make him one. This is the best chance we’ll get.
And we should be watching for other foreign players in Russia too; there are bound to be a few who would enhance our squad in some way. Available possibly for free, or for minimal sums.
Yes it is ruthless. Yes is it exploitative.
But Hell, we’re in a tough business with England as our next door neighbour and if we get a chance to sign players on low fees (or for no fees) who would otherwise cost us tens of millions of pounds, can we really afford to turn that down out of some sense of principle?
Russian football is a victim of a lunatic political class … and to be blunt, that political class has a financial stake in many of the clubs so I feel no sympathy towards them if ourselves and others are seen as looters rampaging through their teams.
Consider this our small contribution to the cause of the Ukrainians if you like.
Jordan Larsson is a quality player.
He would normally cost us a fortune.
We should ask the manager if he’d like to have him in the squad and then reach out and make it happen.