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October 2016
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Under half the clubs have fans who are satisfied with their performance in the transfer window

By Tony Attwood

A recent article in the Guardian had brief reports from the writing of various blogettas about how they felt regarding their club’s involved in the transfer window.

I had hoped they might invite Sir Hardly Anyone to comment on Arsenal but no, they went where they knew they would get complaint.  Actually I didn’t actually understand all of the Arsenal comment but it seemed as if Coquelin was being compared with a “water carrier” without any reference to where all the international comparison stats on him had got it wrong, but the writing was a bit obscure at that point.

Anyway, what interested me particularly was what other club blogetta writers thought about their club’s transfer window.  Were they all dancing in the street, while just some Arsenal fans were miserable? Or were they feeling much like the little bunch of aaa’s were – that we were doomed before the first kick of the season, and the pre-season and charity shield was just a myth.

Here’s a quick summary

Aston Villa.  Net spend: £9.3m

 I’ll stick with my pre-season 16th place prediction: it’d be a decent achievement given the turnover in playing staff.

Apparent Rating: Same old same old.  5/10

Bournemouth  Net spend: £21.5m

Another midfielder would have been great but Jonathan de Guzmán didn’t get on the plane, so what can you do? 

Apparent Rating: South coast realism. 8/10

Chelsea  Net spend: £32.1m

You finally get a booking at the Michelin-star restaurant you’ve been trying to get into for six months – you order the lobster, the filet mignon, and a dessert so fantastical it must have been dreamed up by Nasa. What you actually get is boiled spam, tripe and banana instant whip.

Apparent rating: Sounds like Chelsea have their own aaa.  1/10

Crystal Palace   Net spend: £21.5m

It’s been another brilliant window for Palace. Signing Yohan Cabaye was a real statement of intent, and the deals for Alex McCarthy and Connor Wickham reinforced it…With the best squad in our history, dare we dream of Europe?

Apparent rating.  Wow! 10/10

Everton  Net spend: £12.95m

There’s still no No10. But we’re still on for a top-eight finish – and keeping John Stones was a big plus.

Apparent rating: Not perfect but we kept our man.  7/10

Leicester City: Net spend£20.2m

Ranieri has built on the earlier excellent signings of Shinji Okazaki, Christian Fuchs and Robert Huth by bringing in tough-tackling N’Golo Kante, winger Nathan Dyer, rock hard Yohan Benalouane, and Gökhan Inler for around £5m.

Apparent rating: Wow!  10/10

Liverpool: Net Spend  £10.3m

We spent £78m, recouped £68m, and again go into the season with a squad of maybes and could-bes. Performances so far tell it like it is.

Apparent rating: Herumph.   3/10.

Manchester City: Net spend £124.4m

What a window… We’ve signed the best player in the Bundesliga last season, England’s best prospect since Wayne Rooney in Raheem Sterling, La Liga’s best defender from last season, and Fabian Delph.

Apparent rating: Wow! 10/10

Manchester Utd:   Net spend £33.6m

It was a decent window but the elephant in the room has been the centre-forward position with Rooney still misfiring…  We lack the creativity to break down a bang-average team. I honestly think this will be Rooney’s last season at United.

Apparent rating 5/10.  We’re still in transition.

Newcastle Utd: Net spend £46m

We’ve been crying out for new defenders since dinosaurs roamed the earth and, as usual, we’ve been let down…  Key players have stayed, Ashley has splashed out, but the team needed further strengthening.

Apparent rating 4/10.  Not as bad as we feared but we need more.

Norwich City. Net spend £9.9m

It was a transfer window that started badly, fell away in the middle and ended disastrously… the deadline day failure to land a bona fide, Premier League quality centre-back caused the collective brow to furrow.

Apparent rating 3/10.  Going to be tough.

Southampton: Net income £0.8m

Yet again we’ve lost some serious talent this summer, but some of the arrivals look really promising… Overall, we have more depth in the squad now, and it was refreshing, too, that we stood firm and refused bids for Wanyama and Mané.

Apparent rating 8/10.  Not bad, and we made a profit.

Stoke City.  Net spend £3.1m

The major success of the window was Shaqiri… The failures, though, are quite evident.   We’ll do well to finish in the top 10 considering the signings our table-neighbours have made.

Apparent rating 5/10.  Should have done more.

Sunderland.  Net spend £22.4m

Given that we’re not the most attractive proposition in the division, and that the owner is wary of managers who spend money on players who make little impact, Messrs Advocaat and Congerton seem to have done OK. We still need to move failed players out.

Apparent rating 5/10.  So so

Swansea City.  Net spend £9m

Our total spend is one of the lowest in the division and yet we’ve brought in some top class players, and the squad is looking very capable of at least matching last season’s eighth place.

Apparent rating 9/10.  Excellent work considering our resources.

Tottenham Hotspur.  Net Spend £5.3m

Two months of Daniel Levy-led tactical negotiations and we still didn’t land a proven back-up for Kane….Having sold four from midfield, we now play a centre-half there. Teams don’t qualify for Europe with deficiencies in all three outfield areas of so I’m revising my pre-season prediction of a fifth-place finish to the tune of 10 places below.

Apparent rating 1/10.  Arsenal will be singing “It’s happened again” in February.

Watford.  Net spend £23.8m

The transition from irresistible force to immovable object is well under way but only time will tell whether the current attacking bluntness is temporary, and whether the difficult goodbyes to erstwhile key players were justified…now we just need a quiet, dark room to lie down in for a bit

Apparent rating 7/10.   Goodness knows what’s going to happen.

West Brom.  Net spend  £27.5m

Pulis would have liked more in midfield but the budget was used and the only way of financing further moves was receiving an acceptable for Berahino. We’re left worrying what impact it will have on our season.

Apparent rating 6/10.  It’s Tottenham’s fault.

WHU  Net spend £26.9m

A good window for the Hammers. Credit Sullivan and Gold with spending £34m – if nothing else it should ensure the Olympic Stadium sees Premier League football.

Apparent rating: 8/10.  We’re not going to win anything but we’re holding on.

My point in all this (and you can of course read the whole thing in more detail in the Guardian) is to see which fans felt good about the window.

Among the clubs who most fans would not expect to get a place in the top five

  • Bournemouth, Palace, Everton, Leicester, Southampton, Swansea, Watford, WHU.

Among those who might expect to get a place in the top five

  • Man C

And who thought they had done very badly?

Among the clubs who most fans would not expect to get a place in the top five or six…

  • Norwich, Newcastle.

Among those who might expect to get a place in the top five

  • Chelsea, Liverpool, Man U, Tottenham,

Now of course this is a very crude, rough and ready analysis, but it more or less reflects what I have been reading in the papers and on blogs through the close season.   Man C with their infinite resources have bought exactly who they wanted, and the fans are delirious.  The other teams that might hope for a top finish are not so happy.   Many of the smaller teams are thinking this is a dream come true, only a couple are worried.

One can argue with the details – Newcastle fans might be happier than this one report for example, likewise Man U.  But I think there is a genuine point here, and that is that there is a feeling among clubs nearer the top that they ought to be buying more, and they have screwed up.

What also comes across if one reads the full reports, or indeed the blogs from other supporters, is an over riding view that the solution is obvious, and it is just bizarre that the management can’t see it.  If only the writer were manager, then the club would be sorted.

So maybe that is how it is – doom and gloom is the feeling if you support one of the top clubs, generally some considerable excitement further down the league.

Perhaps fans are similar everywhere.

A footnote on contributions.  It has been pointed out to me by several correspondents that whereas we used to be quite strict on applying the rules laid out on the home page, particularly in relation to debating the point made in the article, we’ve become very lax.  So I’m going to try and ensure that those who want to discuss the issue raised in a post get the chance.   To help, let me point out that this is an article about how fans of clubs other than Arsenal see their team in the coming season.


22 comments to Under half the clubs have fans who are satisfied with their performance in the transfer window

  • Dex

    No wonder the Palace fanswere happy, they had an excellent transfer window. Signing Cabaye was fantastici.

    I’d have been happy with him at Arsenal. (Honest!)

    Seeing as the fabled Wengers Window of Wonder has now shut, having been witness to the amazingly astute business Arsenal did… Completely lulling the opposition into a false sense of security by fooling them into thinking we completely fucked up by failing to add to the squad, when in actual fact we secretly added the ghost of Cliff Bastin and Socrates to our all conquering squad…

    Isn’t it time to forget this bollocks of a trNsfer window and move on now?

    We play the Orcs this weekend… Surely that can unite Gooners… Even the hysterical zealots.

  • Sukebe

    Could anybody block this bollock called dex, and move on now?

  • omgarsenal

    Hey Sukebe….its a free country but DEX is actually a 15 year old,acne-scarred adolescent who gets his kicks writing desperately idiot rubbish like the above….its his sole achievement in an otherwise wasted life.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    A panel of doctors at a local hospital who were asked to vote on
    adding a new wing. Their responses are listed below:

    The allergists voted to scratch it.
    The dermatologists preferred no rash moves.
    The gastroenterologists had a gut feeling about it.
    The neurologists thought the administration had a lot of nerve.
    The obstetricians stated they were laboring under a misconception.
    The ophthalmologists considered the idea short-sighted.
    The pathologists yelled, “Over my dead body!”
    The pediatricians said, “Grow up.”
    The proctologists said, “We are in arrears.”
    The psychiatrists thought it was madness.
    The surgeons decided to wash their hands of the whole thing.
    The radiologists could see right through it.
    The internists thought it was a hard pill to swallow.
    The plastic surgeons said, “This puts a whole new face on the matter.”
    The podiatrists thought it was a big step forward.
    The urologists felt the scheme wouldn’t hold water.
    The anesthesiologists thought the whole idea was a gas.
    And the cardiologists didn’t have the heart to say no.
    The HMOs killed it, anyway.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    The cure ?

    Doctor: “Take the green pill with a glass of water
    when you get up. Take the blue pill with 2 glasses
    of water after lunch. Then just before going to bed,
    take the red pill with another glass of water.”

    Man: “Exactly what’s my problem, doc?”

    Doctor: “You’re not drinking enough water.”

  • Nonny

    @ Bricksfield Gunners
    Sees fun in everything. Good morning to you to.

    Only thrives in negativity. I wonder what your life will be like. So much pain and anguish.

    To the heart of the matter. Yes, fans have a right to mourn and cry out but since the inception of the twitter and other chat sites, armchair fans have taken over the net spreading doom and gloom.

    The funny thing is that because a few have played FIFA and FM, they think they know that it takes to run a club. Things controlled in these games are not in the real word and there is neither reset or restart.

    Clubs have appointed experts (FIFA badge coaches) to run their club. They need to be given the chance and opportunity the archive their aim. Gone are the days when people exercise patience. Youths of today want everything laid for them on a plate and even at that, they are still not satisfied.

    Every club has its own Dex (aaa) even City

  • Pete

    Dex – You have refused to respond to my very simple questions:

    1. Who would you have bought?
    2. How much would you have paid?
    3. Which current player would they displace from the first team?

    Put up or shut up.

  • Pete

    I see the Arsenal contribution was by Bernard… I’ll have a word!

  • serge

    Don’t worry about it. It’s over and as you say now move on.
    To paraphrase the song: if you can’t love the players you want, love ones you’ve got.

  • nicky

    It’s about time the supporters of ALL clubs realised that (a) they know little or nothing about the behind the scenes action at their club during the bi-annual Transfer Window opening and (b)their posturing, complaining and advising has no effect on the action taken by their club.
    Better by far to have faith in those whose responsibility it is to govern the club and its business.

  • Peter ref who would you buy ?

    It’s not quite that straightforward surely , unless your the manager with access to imformation from other clubs and agents the only players you could pick from are the ones that have been sold
    What about clubs that sought exchange deals , I would have considered flaming and Arteta for Austin myself

  • Nonny

    @ Judge

    You would seriously have bought Austin if you were the manager? As what, because I know he will definitely be behind Giroud and Walcott in the pecking order and gets to play the odd FA and League Cup matches with a few substitute appearances. (We already have Campbell for that)

    1. If you are Austin, would you leave QPR where you are a fan favourite and 1st choice to go become 3rd choice at Arsenal with limited game time.

    2. If you are Arteta or Flamini, would you leave Arsenal for QPR? (They can’t even afford the wages)

    3. What happens to Akpom if he develops to the required level after the loan deal like wilshere did?

    4. What happens when a targeted striker becomes available next transfer window or summer? You buy him too of course and become Liverpool who at one time had 8 strikers in their books.

    5. Do you think Arsenal fans will welcome the idea of Austin as an ideal striker after clamouring for a WC? Least I forget, Welbeck will be back next year and Austin will become 4th choice on a massive salary with a 4-5 years contract.

    You would really make a wonderful manager. Keep it up.

  • serge

    This new Like-Dislike feature is a bit buggy. In testing it out I managed to vote for myself twice and I’m definitely not worth it.

  • serge

    And now a third time.

  • It was meant to be a little tongue in cheek . No I don’t seriously want to sign Austin hes no way good enough for Arsenal it’s was an example of what might be possible , but such imformation would only be available if you were a Manager .

    That said if Giroud got crocked and we didn’t miss Flam an d Arteta certainly no worse than Sanogo or Cambell !

  • As emergency back up . Which we may well need ,hope not !

  • Menace

    I am happy with the squad we have at present. The injuries are a little disappointing as I was hoping our squad would survive the first 10 games. We have not played badly but our finishing has been ‘soft’. Our aggression is lacking in the opponents box.

    I hope we win this months games because it will prepare us for the rest of the season.


  • Pete

    Judge – but that’s the point. There were no obvious candidates. I would not take any of the strikers who moved at the price that was paid, to Arsenal.

    Of the strikers who didn’t move we just don’t who was available and what they would have cost. Given the likes of Man Utd spent £36mm (and the rest) on Martial it was obvious that if any top class striker became available we would have been outbid.

    So I was very happy with how the window went. We have saved our money for a future opportunity.

    In the meantime, I will trust Wenger to develop the likes of Akpom.

  • sukebe


    yeah, i just hate his foulmouth..

    that’s not how kids supposed to use their mouth anyway…

  • Gord

    Manchester City: Net spend £124.4m

    What a window… We’ve signed the best player in the Bundesliga last season, England’s best prospect since Wayne Rooney in Raheem Sterling, La Liga’s best defender from last season, and Fabian Delph.

    Apparent rating: Wow! 10/10

    Second game playing for England after the transfer to ManCity, and Delph blows his hamstring after 12 seconds.

    > There was no one near him when he went down. It’s a hamstring.

    I’m not watching, bad warmup? Got to be some reason why he got injured so quickly.

    No reasons being proposed by the muppets at the BBC. Is Phil at the game? Did he tackle him? Or his brother Gary?

  • @Gord. Those guys are real bad ass baddies. They probably projected their dark thoughts unto the field of play to do him in without anybody seeing them. They get a huge kick from seeing people injured, even their own. Am sure they must be licking their thin lips in satisfaction in some dark cave somewhere….