Ronaldo transfer money harder to spend in reality

The latest in ridiculous transfer stories is the one about United’s bid for Liverpool’s Fernando Torres. Much as we rate the Spaniard, it’s not a deal that makes sense. There’s been talk about Liverpool’s reported financial situation that will force Liverpool’s hand. But let all that talk not fool you. Liverpool will be absolutely mad, and even absolutely mad would be a gross understatement, to sell them to any of the other three top clubs in England, let alone United, whatever their financial situation maybe. In fact they would be crazy to sell him, full stop. There is the debt situation, but it is surely not even close to that faced by Valencia.

To sell Torres would mean regression in all Benitez might have achieved so far at Liverpool, and it is conceivable to say that it could result in the manager himself quitting the club. It all makes for a nice little read on a Sunday afternoon, but I wouldn’t pay too much attention to that. If that ever happened, Liverpool would go down in history as the club run by cretins bigger than Mike Ashley.

I’ve made some murmurs about my cynicism over our transfer strategy, following the record Ronaldo transfer, briefly in the comments, but I need to expand on that a bit more.

The above Torres example is just one in a line of a dozen names trotted out in a period of 4-5 days. Any footballer that can kick a ball becomes the next Kaka, Maldini, Messi, followed by quotes from unnamed sources spilling the beans over said players’ interest in joining United. Said players’ clubs will come out with statements that basically say that it would take crazy money for the club to let their players leave.

Another player whose transfer is taking longer than normal due to the transfer fee is Antonio Valencia — a classic case of the selling club knowing the buying club is flush with cash.

In short, £80m will make clubs add another 20m quid on players’ asking fee. It’s the nature of the transfer market, and has often been United’s undoing.

United’s — or rather, Ferguson’s — history in going after replacements for star players has been mixed. Whilst he was largely credited for the golden generation following the sale of Hughes, Ince, Kanchelskis, the buys following the Beckham sale were largely forgettable, save for a certain Portuguese lad from Madeira. Other famous names from that rebuilding exercise included luminaries such as David Bellion, Eric Djemba-Djemba, Kleberson, and Alan Smith. In 01/02 we also saw Jaap Stam replaced by Blanc. So it can’t be said that Ferguson is a master at immediately replacing big players with another set of stars that can slip seamlessly into the void.

He is great at rebuilding sides, remodelling the system to work around other players. But he takes time for it, and regardless of what we do in the transfer market this summer, to expect success this season is rather unrealistic. If we manage to buy a couple of players and not skip a beat then I would doff my hat to Ferguson for a remarkable feat. However good a side maybe, changing a system following the departure of a star player, and still going on in a great run takes some doing from the manager.

Ideally, finishing transfer activity before the pre-season would help greatly. However, as history has shown, we haven’t been great at it — be it due to our perception as a ‘rich’ club, or due to our executives’ inability to play hard ball.

By a lot of accounts, we have a list of transfer targets drawn up upon Ferguson’s recommendations. Villa is unattainable; reports claim he prefers Spain. I’d say, with our experience with Spain lovers we shouldn’t waste too much time with him. Karim Benzema is another; Ferguson is an open admirer of the Frenchman’s talents, but in the past he’s claimed his dream is to play for Madrid/Barcelona. I’ve seen very little of him claiming interest to play for English clubs. Of course, in modern day mercenary footy, these quotes matter little, but the lad for all his talents has shown tendencies to throw a strop or two. I wouldn’t straightaway rule him out, but if Lyon’s reputation in selling their stars is anything to go by we shouldn’t waste too much time with them either.

This brings us to some other obvious names. Franck Ribery is once again a Spain lover — as if it doesn’t get cold in Bavaria. But whilst it’s tempting to go for him, there is a danger of over paying for him. I would really be pessimistic over his signing.

That leaves us with no other obvious stars left to go for. Most of the others are clearly off limits to us. We’d have to rely on our past policy of going for rising stars with undeniable talent, but not yet world class superstars. This is a high gamble strategy that has paid off for us, but it isn’t an exact science either that guarantees instant success.

We can talk about the likes of Alexis Sanchez, Aguero, Huntelaar, Sneijder etc, all we want, if it’s instant transfer activity that we crave it may or may not happen soon enough. [I think it will be longer than we expect] And, if it’s continued success on the pitch, we crave, there needs to be a bit more patience on that front.

Meanwhile all we can do for the moment is to look around watching paint dry or perhaps, watch the Confederations cup. Speaking of which, how boring was yesterday’s opening two matches? Those interested in goings on in the Cup might want to look up SL’s coverage on the Confederations Cup. Who knows, the tournament might throw up a few surprise stars!

Anyway, I’ll end my waffling for now, over to you folks!



  1. @NicoQB: I’ll remember to skim your posts to in the future mate. 😉 😀
    I always judge a book by it’s length. The longer, the better and more informed. Biased I know but somebody had to pat me on the shoulder. 🙂

  2. @Stephen: That’s not a good sign. So does that mean that because we are chasing Franck Ribery we will end up with Jermaine Pennant?


  3. @Grognard: Oh shit we probably will end up with Luis Boa Morte 😆 😆
    In reality we will certainly end up with Valencia for a silly amount of money which is to me odd, he is a decent player but for me not United quality and again for far too much money, he has been at Wigan for 3 seasons and has scored 7 goals, we need to buy midfielders who contribute more goals.

  4. @Stephen: I agree. I think United will overpay for him which I don’t think would have been the case had Steve Bruce still been around. I think Brucey would have respected the Gaffer enough to live by the initial 15 million talked about handshake agreement in January.

  5. @Grognard: You maybe right, we missed a trick not buying Palacios in Jan, and if we were keen on Valencia then we should have struck a deal with Wigan for the pair, although Valencia doesn’t do it for me.

  6. HAHAHAHA, that Napoleon one made me chuckle.

    PS, eddy has officially come out the closet 😉

  7. @Grognard: Aawww, don’t take it too badly, by skimming, I mean reading fast.
    as much as I like reading a good gutsy debate, sometimes I simply don’t have the time, so I have to resort to skimming. But I wouln’t blame you if you start doing the same for me… after all I started it. 😛

    Eddy, eddy, eddy…
    This picture just exudes gayness!!!

  8. @Craig Mc: Hell mate, I look better than him! 😎 He looks like Dirk Kuyt compared to me, I am a God! Only Jesus(if using his powers for his own well being) could look like me!!! 😀

  9. @Dan: Im not gay mate. 🙂 Some people may consider me that, but those are the people that dont know me. Its doesnt mean you are gay just because you wanna look good, although when it comes to footy I couldnt care how I look as long as I do well. 🙂 My body is for use, its not for merchanise only. 😉

    Besides, if you guys saw a picture of me working out you all would ditch your girlfriends, stop thinking about any woman and you would be saving the image in your “I wank to this” file. If you saw me, you all would turn gay… 😆 😆 😛

  10. @NicoQB: It’s much better than all the sad fucks who watch Eastenders or Corrination Street or Hollyoaks… nobodygets hit in the face with a chair or jumps off a 20ft ladder :mrgreen:

  11. Real Madrid has been to the point where they were supposed to be the best team in the world on paper and didn’t even win the league. It’s much more important to have the team chemistry, so farewell splendid Ronaldo, welcome to Real Ego.
    Bring on Michael Owen from the bench!

  12. I think you’re a bit harsh on Ferguson. Of course, you were right to mention Djemba-Djemba, Bellion, and the likes, but the post-Beckham signings have also included Anderson (who has been worth his 17m quid, in my opinion), Michael Carrick, Patrice Evra, and the irreplaceable Nemanja Vidic. Vidic is probably one of the top three center-halves in the league, if not the best; Carrick has been fantastic; Evra (though struggling of late) has been overall quality; even Nani (despite his inconsistencies) has scored some blockbusters, and seems to score more against the bigger teams and at big moments. And let’s not forget – possibly his shrewdest signing of all – Edwin Van der Sar. I agree it will take a while, but be careful saying the post-Beckham signings have been less than desireable. That’s a list of some pretty good buys.

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