John McCormick writes: there’s a saying somewhere to the extent that you need to kiss a lot of frogs to get your prince. That has to be true of us. We’ve had Marco, Sir Kevin and Jermain Defoe, and also Darren Bent, but we’ve also had Tore Andre Flo, Asamoah Gyan, Steven Fletcher, Kenwyne Jones, Marcus Stewart, Thomas Hauser, Kevin Kyle, David Bellion, Connor Whickham, Danny Dichio, Frazier Campbell, Jozy Altidore and Danny Bloody Graham (ISHS) among others.
And now we have Will Grigg and Charlie Wyke. Neither, it has to be said, has filled me with delight. Neither, it has to be said, has shone in the pre-season games. Or have I got it wrong? I wasn’t there, I have seen hardly any TV, and what do I know about football anyway? Perhaps someone more knowledgeable will correct me.
Or perhaps one of them will smack in half a dozen goals when we take on Oxford and prove me wrong that way.
I wasn’t unhappy with our recruitment over the summer, however, despite us not bringing in the number of players Jack Ross was talking about a month ago. We’ve addressed issues at the back and some of our youths are coming through and/or returning from loans and/or injury. It was just that niggle about two “should but don’ts” and our dependence on them.
And now we appear to have addressed that issue with the loan signing of Marc McNulty. He moved from Scotland to Sheffield, was loaned out to a couple of clubs and then signed for Coventry, where he helped them gain promotion. From there he moved to Reading, where he had a bit of a barren time, and was loaned out to Hibs. That seemed to do him good as he managed almost a goal every other game and got into the National Squad, making two appearances for Scotland. Coming up to 27 (in September) he should be reaching his prime, and he does have a point to prove.
So can he do a job for us? With such a mixed career you’ll find a range of opinions but if he provides competition and gees up Grigg and Wyke I’ll be happy, and I’ll be even happier if he turns out to be the missing piece – the player who takes the pressure off them and performs well while the young ones are coming up through the ranks. After that, who knows? And if it doesn’t work out, with it being a loan there won’t be the costs we’ve seen with other players.
It could be a good bit of business for both parties.
So welcome, Marc (Sparky) McNulty. May your stay be productive.