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  1. You have to wonder though whether his 'fitness issues' are in part to do with not really being wanted and whether they will clear up somewhere where he feels happy. As I understand it he's been fit to play most of last season but Zidane just froze him out. He seems to manage to be fit for Wales most of the time.
  2. We are basically in the middle, shows the vast different levels of success really, Liverpool and Leicester doing well on not a lot of owner financing (IIRC Henry's money has been invested in the stadium and training ground) Everton, Villa and Fulham doing very little with a lot of investment. I mean the Everton owner has thrown £300 million into the club over 5 years and they have gone backwards and still have an old outdated stadium. I wonder how long he will last if he doesn't start seeing a return on all this money he puts in?
  3. BBC gave the Palace keeper the MOM so can't be that bad, one of those games that goes either way but honestly Palace are going to go down IMO if they play like that at home all the time, can't expect to park the bus, give 70% possession away and hope their keeper makes good saves to win the game. Typical rusty Saints opening game of the season, looked more like a pre-season game, just not enough crispness to break them down, but should get better I reckon. After last year we should know not to worry about a little bit of a sluggish start.
  4. I don't think Gao is a horrific owner, he seems pretty average and we could clearly do a lot worse. Honestly is he any worse than the Liverpool owner, he doesn't really put money in or out and seems to just let them get on with it, just obviously Liverpool have a bigger brand to work on that generates more income. He's certainly IMO not worse than the likes of West Ham who throw bad money at everything, seem to flip and change their minds, have no real focus or structure on what they are doing, the owners son mouths off on social media, or the Glazers who literally take money out of Utd for example. Gao doesn't invest, doesn't take money out of the club and seems to let the people who know what they are doing run the club sustainably. It's not fancy or flashy, but its been fairly solid, our recent troubles have had nothing really to do with the owner but mistakes by the football people, i.e poor scouting, poor management appointments. I think sometimes the grass is not always greener and these rumours worry me to be honest. We have a solid and stable football foundation to build on at the moment, decent first team, a good manager, a solid CEO who seems open about the club, a decent academy system. Plenty to build on without needing dramatic changes, sure some more investment would be great but even that is hard to get right, look at Everton.
  5. If Ralph wants him then why hasn't he played him more?
  6. tajjuk

    Wesley Hoedt

    It's the double edged sword of being able to offer big wages to attract players, if the transfer doesn't work out (which lets be honest a lot don't its hardly just us) then you will struggle to off load them. I mean look at people like Sanchez, Smalling, Jones at Utd, Bale and James at Real, Coutinho and others at Barca, all players who those clubs have or are struggling to off load because of wages and clubs not wanting to part with the transfer fees. The reason we have been able to get people in the past like Van Dijk, Mane, Forster, or more recent signings like Djenepo and Salisu is because PL wages are a big draw for players, we can offer as a mid level club wages that top clubs in the Dutch, French, Portuguese etc. leagues can't offer and more than mid level clubs in Germany or Spain can offer. Of course the advantage that brings becomes a disadvantage when those transfers go wrong and you need to get rid of those players they quite rightly don't want to take a big drop in wages. Most of these players were young players doing well and at the time wanted by other clubs, at the time they hardly looked like terrible signings (Carrillo aside) they just haven't worked out. They were IMO no different than Salisu or Djnepo that most people were excited about and equally could not work out, its just the way of transfers and the market. Most PL clubs have expensive flops, especially if they aren't top 6 level teams you have to gamble a bit on talents that might provide value for money. Hard IMO to be too critical on the club for the general approach, what else are we supposed to do? Sign rejects from the big 6 clubs, sure you might get a Bertrand, but you also might get a Wilshere or a Wellbeck, or god forbid a Lingaard, and we can't financially compete for Europe's top young talents, so you have to look at leagues like the Holland, France, Portugal, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium etc. for players who stand out and might step up. I am also not really sure why you put Cedric in there, he cost like £4 million and was a solid right back who then didn't want to sign a contract and we got some money for him at the end. Hoedt was what like a 23 year old Netherlands International playing for Lazio, no at the time thought he would turn out this bad. I bet if you look back more people on here had doubts about Danny Ings than they did about Hoedt or someone like Boufal. I also think its important to note that most of these flop signings coincided with some terrible managerial appointments, who knows what players like Boufal or Hoedt might have done coming into a Ralph managed team? That is IMO where the real criticism lies, tranfers are always a gamble in the market we have to operate in but we should have known a lot about likes of Pellegrino or Hughes to know they were not very good.
  7. I think FFP rules have been allowed to be spread over 2 years so this season and next, which gives clubs more wiggle room I think. Its part of the reason why Chelsea can spend so much and why City could have apparently afforded Messi.
  8. Yeh I noticed that, he made a lot of good runs and barely got the ball, had he been used I think they would have scored in the first half. I saw it more as a pretty typical England thing of the regular clique not really liking new people, the likes of Sterling, Kane and Sancho having been playing together for like 1-2 years so its probably just that. Maybe also some big club ego because he's only from little old Southampton.
  9. Don't think any of them are match fit, they all look a bit off the pace.
  10. Versatile players usually mean they are technically sound, positionally sound, have good stamina and work rate, and good football intelligence. If a manager trusts them to play multiple positions then it means they are usually pretty good. Plus there is not a huge amount of difference in the raw abilities you need for full back and more defensive mid positions, which is why the likes of JWP have been able to fill in at full back pretty solidly.
  11. They were probably thinking about freshening it up anyway, I mean Le Tiss was the one that played most recently and that was pretty much 20 years ago, hardly like they have much insight into modern football really. Someone like Richards was part of the Man City title winning squads so it makes sense. Its possible that Le Tiss was borderline and then his silly twitter rambles pushed him over the edge.
  12. Rodriguez is on around £280k a week, I wonder what absurd wages Everton are going to pay him. Could work out I suppose but he's been poor for years to the point where Real don't even use him on the bench, but it seems a very messy approach that they were supposedly moving away from, they seem to becoming more 'West Ham' than actual West Ham. Also as far as I am aware the only person they have managed to shift so far is Schneiderlin, so their wage bill is going to be huge.
  13. Who had no. 8 before because JWP has had 16 for years hasn't he? I also know its only a number and he had it last year but Long having no. 7 irks me.
  14. tajjuk

    Guido Carrillo

    Its all well and thinking Jimenez would have been a great signing in hindsight but before he joined Wolves he was a striker with a 1 in 5 record playing for one of the best teams in a league that is not one of Europes top 5 and probably a level below the PL. He also was not a first team regular for them either. Which is why Wolves probably signed him on loan initially. If we'd signed a back up striker from Benfica who had a 1 in 5 record I doubt many would be hailing him as an amazing signing, he pretty much would have been as big a gamble as Carrillo was.
  15. The Athletic article on this basically reckons the Premier League is their target because Scudamore has been brought onboard and because buying US sports is difficult aside Baseball but baseball is seen unlikely because of Beane. The article then goes on the mention Spurs and Newcastle, Spurs being a more expensive option that would need more funding probably from a joint investor and Newcastle as a 'cheap' option. (no indication whether someone like Spurs might be sold) Also due to the way the deal has been done there is basically a ticking clock, as soon as the company was set up and investors put their money in they have 2 years to make a purchase or all the money has to go back to investors so i'd expect this group to be making a move sooner or later. So that factor might put us more possibly involved because the club is supposedly for sale. Key though is this is an investment opportunity, these people are looking to make money from this, not spend it endlessly so even if they took us over I doubt you would see lots of spending, it would probably be much of the same, attempting to buy players low and sell high, and probably investment in the marketing of the club and maybe the area (IIRC several experts in property development are part of the group, amongst many others, there is a huge variety of experienced people in this group)
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