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Slipperduke

The Camden Cad
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
4,333
Location
North London
Was football just waiting for me to go on holiday before it got interesting? I left for the sun-bleached Spanish countryside on the morning after the Confederations Cup Final and, no sooner had my budget airliner wobbled onto Alicante's dusty runway than the transfer market exploded. Every trip to the international newstand brought a new helping of insanity from home, another golden nugget of absolute madness.

I'm starting to fall in love with Garry Cook, the chief executive of Manchester City. He might just be the most entertaining man in football. I love the way that he has two plans of action for any crisis. Step one, throw money at it. If that doesn't work, advance to step two and throw even more money at it. He doesn't seem to realise that the football agent community are attuned to this kind of behaviour. How else could you explain Samuel Eto's reported demands for 50% of the GBP25m transfer fee as a golden handshake? Or the GBP200,000 a week wage request? They know that they can ask him for absolutely anything and there's a chance he'll say yes. Eto'o and his handler must have been giggling themselves silly on the other end of the phone during those negotiations. "Go on! Go on! Ask him! Ask him for the signing-on fee!"

But if the Eto'o talks have been bizarre, the John Terry saga is so far out of left-field that it's in a different ballpark on the other side of town. If the rumours are true, Cook is apparently offering GBP300,000 a week to the England captain. Just read that again. GBP300,000. Every seven days. This deal is a unique double-whammy. Not only would it be disastrous for City to hurl that kind of cash at one player, setting a precedent for astronomical wages and utterly destroying dressing room morale in the process, but it would seriously damage Terry as well. He is the kingpin at Stamford Bridge, worshipped by the fans and untouchable in the dressing room. Why jeopardise that for a team who aren't even in Europe? More worryingly, there is a chance that he might be found out. Indomitable in the air, he is not the most mobile of centre-backs. Just imagine what a couple of early mistakes would do to the mood of the City fans. GBP300,000 can pay for a lot, but it won't buy patience.

But while one side of Manchester was offering a free lesson in bad business, the other was showing the world how to do it properly. Sir Alex Ferguson's decision to snap up Michael Owen on 1/6th of those reported Terry wages was a stroke of genius. At GBP50,000 per week, he's significantly cheaper than any other proven international striker on offer and, with such a phenomenal goalscoring rate, you'd have to assume that he's still got between 15-20 goals a season in him, especially in a team like United. Even if the first whistle of the season sends out a shockwave that shatters Owen's kneecaps, it will be no disaster. There has been no transfer fee and his contract has been weighted by performance-related bonuses. It's a no-lose deal, but if it comes off, imagine how furious the Liverpool fans will be with Rafa Bentitez. Now there's a hidden bonus for Fergie.

So much for getting away from it all then. Even with six weeks to go before the start of the season, football continues to crash through the best laid plans of hacks and men. But when it's this exciting, when it's this brain-bendingly daft, would any of us really have it any other way?
 

Pubey

Guest
you've been missed Slipper... brilliant article that sums up the last week!
 

Napster

The Horse with no Name⭐
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Messages
35,429
Location
The wilds of Kent
I thought Owen was on 30k a week? And it seems you're in the minority who thinks the Owen move is a good one. Why didnt Sir Al buy him when he was on the market from Madrid?
 

BILLERICAY BLUE

RoseTinted Brigade Member⭐
Joined
Oct 28, 2003
Messages
11,998
Location
Have a guess....
Napster said:
I thought Owen was on 30k a week? And it seems you're in the minority who thinks the Owen move is a good one. Why didnt Sir Al buy him when he was on the market from Madrid?
I'm with Slip on this one, the only thing that annoys me is that he's gone to Man Utd rather than back to Liverpool.

As I mentioned in an earlier thread, for any of the top for sides it was a no-brainer if you could get him on a pay-as-you-play or performance related deal. If he's fit, you've got the best Engalnd goalscorer of the last 20 years for zip plus his wages and if he's not fit he hasn't cost you anything. Where's the downside in that ??
 

Napster

The Horse with no Name⭐
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Messages
35,429
Location
The wilds of Kent
I'm with Slip on this one, the only thing that annoys me is that he's gone to Man Utd rather than back to Liverpool.

As I mentioned in an earlier thread, for any of the top for sides it was a no-brainer if you could get him on a pay-as-you-play or performance related deal. If he's fit, you've got the best Engalnd goalscorer of the last 20 years for zip plus his wages and if he's not fit he hasn't cost you anything. Where's the downside in that ??

Well, if I was a Man U fan, I'd think why can't they buy a proven goalscorer who has experience of CL football. Theyve just made 80m quid. They can afford who they want - heck why not get Ruud back?
 

EastStandBlue

Life President
Joined
May 29, 2005
Messages
15,481
Well, if I was a Man U fan, I'd think why can't they buy a proven goalscorer who has experience of CL football. Theyve just made 80m quid. They can afford who they want - heck why not get Ruud back?

Because he's 4 years older than Owen, just as fragile, would command a fee and more than likely higher wages?

Most United fans I know are happy with signing Owen... They've got the Box striker they've craved for a while now for nothing, leaving the £80m they've reaped in for Ronaldo open to rebuild the midfield.
 

Slipperduke

The Camden Cad
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
4,333
Location
North London
Well, if I was a Man U fan, I'd think why can't they buy a proven goalscorer who has experience of CL football. Theyve just made 80m quid. They can afford who they want - heck why not get Ruud back?

Owen's got lots of CL experience. Just not in the last four years. As for the 80m, most of it went on interest payments. Utd are paying out 60m every season for the Glazer loan.

Ruud, sadly, is even more broken than Owen these days.
 

Napster

The Horse with no Name⭐
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Messages
35,429
Location
The wilds of Kent
Owen's got lots of CL experience. Just not in the last four years. As for the 80m, most of it went on interest payments. Utd are paying out 60m every season for the Glazer loan.

Ruud, sadly, is even more broken than Owen these days.

Fair enough. Although I still am not taken with the signing, we'll see how he does. ;)
 
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