So, the Tierney story has finally reached its conclusion. I have to admit to a certain amount of relief. It was a deal which didn’t have much appeal for me, because I suspected that it would only be a loan deal on a short-term basis and I generally don’t like those although I see the need for at least one of them to get us through the injury crisis and he’d have been a more than adequate player to do that.
Still, my initial view on it was correct; this was only realistic if it went to the last day. I’m not convinced by the idea that Tierney only wanted to come home. He wanted to play. He wants out of Arsenal, and had Newcastle or another top club came in he would have gone there on a permanent deal and would never have looked back.
At the start of this window there was a chance Arsenal would keep him on. Why wouldn’t they? We know that not only is he a great left back but that he can play on the right and in central defence as well. He’s a wonderful asset to have … and Arteta has scandalously misused or underused him. I have been pretty shocked at his treatment, to be honest.
Who knows why Arteta doesn’t fancy him? Is it personal? It certainly does seem to be, and I am amazed the Arsenal board has allowed him to have a footballer of this quality wither on the vine. Their valuations on a player who isn’t getting game-time are patently ridiculous though, and part of that, of course, is that English football is quite mad.
It’s because of the madness of English football that I always thought that this was unlikely.
Our chance was that he was still tied to Arsenal with the clock almost run down, and with no options available to him or to the club itself, I thought that was be our moment. I actually didn’t see any club coming in for him; I thought that opportunity might still be there right to the end.
Sociedad seems like a strange move for him to be honest, but he will play for sure and in a top league against some of the best players in the world. If he can give a good account of himself there will be plenty of interested clubs come the summer. He’s smart.
For Celtic, I can’t blame us for this one. We don’t even know that Celtic was genuinely interested, but in this case I can defend them completely for allowing it go to the final week, because the later it was the more chance we stood of getting it over the line.
That a club from Spain has come in at just about the last knockings was a risk, but there wasn’t much choice for us in taking it because unless Kieran was determined to come home, he was always going to wait to see who else was interested before a decision was made.
This one is now closed. We stick a pin in it and we can move on.