Ibrox likes trying to piggy back on the lessons we’ve learned, so here’s a good one for them. If they think that the answer to a successful summer is moving on some of the dreck which clogs up their squad right now they are in for a big surprise. As we’ve discovered from previous efforts that is much easier said than done.
Transfer business is never simple.
If you have a squad full of filler you want shot of, you need to have willing buyers for it and when it came to moving on the likes of Bolingoli, Ajeti, Barkas and others we didn’t have a whole lot of luck the first time we tried.
Some will point out, correctly, that we’ve still not moved some of these guys on yet; Barkas and Ajeti are still, technically, Celtic players and big money has been wasted on both of them. But of course, it helps if you’re financially robust enough to take that hit.
A chunk of their squad is almost out of contract, and there are reports about some of them having already decided to move on. That will cut the wage bill somewhat, but it won’t bring in any cash on its own. The wage bill cut would be welcomed at their club but of course a lot of these guys are key squad players and so will have to be replaced.
There will still be a lot of dead wood at that club, players in the squad who don’t play every week and, in fact, who are lucky to get games at all. The media seems to think – clinging to an ancient fantasy here – that they will be able to move these guys on and even get fees for some of them, but that’s a forlorn hope and one, in fact, they’ve bought into before.
We’re a much more robust club than they are, and we can’t do that as quickly or as readily as we’d want at times. Nobody at Parkhead will welcome the headache of trying to find another loan deal or whatever for Barkas. Ajeti is even less likely to be coming back to trumpets and fanfare; he might be one of the most disappointing signings we’ve made in decades.
They are going to face the same problem, and perhaps worse, trying to move on the likes of Colak if he doesn’t fancy it, and why should he?
An overweight ned is walking into the team in front of him every week, and when that guy is not in the team – I was going to say when he’s not fit, but when is he ever fit in the way our club would understand it? – they have played Sakala and the other injury prone forward Roofe first. A Van Bronckhorst signing, Beale just does not rate him at all and that’s obvious.
But the two are very much stuck with each other, and that’s equally true of the likes of Matondo. When you look at Ross Wilson’s record – and let’s do that just for a laugh – you see just how absolutely appalling it is.
Hagi. Kamberi. McLaughlin. Bassey. Balogun. Itten. Roofe. Zungu. Wright. Simpson. Ofoborh. Lundstram. Sakala. Bacuna. Sands. Souttar. Diallo. Ramsey. Colak. Lawrence. Matondo. Tillman. Davies. Ridvan. Cantwell. Raskin.
That’s a lot of players. A whole lot of them, and many of them aren’t even at the club any longer. One Ibrox fan yesterday tried to do a list of the successes … it is painfully funny.
Hagi, who has been injured for what seems like a lifetime.
Bassey, who netted them some money at least but isn’t going to help them now.
Colak, see above. Can’t get a game ahead of Mad Dog.
Lawrence, for God’s sake. He has played nine games for them. Nine.
Tillman, arguable but he’s going to cost them a bomb to keep.
Davies, the kind of signing who managers get sacked for sanctioning as the weekend proved.
Ridvan, who has played less than Lawrence.
Cantwell and Raskin, who are basically just in the door so how they can be branded “successful” signings is insane.
Lundstram, who looks like what I always thought he was; a cardboard hard-man with not an ounce of football in him.
Finally Sakala who alone of that lot looks half decent.
If these are the “success stories” then you know that you’re looking at a car-crash of serious proportions, and a lot of people needing moved on.
The Mooch sat in front of the media today and said that it will be a summer of change, and that the club will very soon decide who it wants to retain and who it wants to move on.
This is sheer nonsense of course as some of those they want to keep won’t be staying and some of those they want to ship out won’t be going … as usual he is living in his own fantasy world.
He and Ross Wilson are under real pressure here.
For once they’d do well to have Celtic foremost in their thoughts. We are better at this than they are, and even our record of moving on those we don’t want any longer is patchy at best, which shows how tough it is to do.