Ladies and gentlemen, it’s that time of the year again – it’s Broken Clock Day.
Charlie Nicholas, in his inane column for Britain’s ugliest newspaper, the Scottish Daily Express, has actually gotten something right. In slating Ibrox’s transfer policy he has identified one key area which sums it up perfectly; the goalkeeping position.
In the summer, the Ibrox club was widely believed to be letting Allan McGregor head for the retirement home. The decision to retain his services when he was already clearly no longer up to it was ridiculous, and done to save money, much as the retention of Arfield and Davis was.
What’s worse is that his understudy was arguably even worse; Jon McLaughlin is terrible and he has already been in the team and then jettisoned as not being able to compete even with his ageing counterpart. The decision not to sign a keeper was quite mad.
And Nicholas has pointed out that there was a perfectly good one in Scotland, available for free. If only we hadn’t gotten him first. Benjamin Siegrist, who is Celtic’s number two, would, according to Nicholas, be the first choice at Ibrox and he is correct.
There are few things that sum up the abject nature of their transfer decision making like allowing Siegrist to talk to Celtic without making him an offer. There is no guarantee that he would have accepted it, of course, but they could have offered him that starting berth to sweeten the deal. Instead they went for Mr Staunch again, and when he was confirmed as staying they had no choice but to stick with him and McLaughlin.
There have been so many mistakes in the Ibrox transfer policy that it seems a tad churlish to point this one out, and it won’t be the definitive one when the season ends anyway; their failure to invest in a top class midfielder will be seen as a critical one.
But it shows the short-sightedness of the Ibrox operation and its basic stupidity. There is no doubt that Siegrist was the best keeper in Scotland last season outside of Celtic Park, and signing him this summer was, for us, a no brainer.
It was a no-brainer for them too … but they never had the brains for it.