How cold business realities may be guiding Quinn and Bruce

“Keeping Jones was not the answer,” Jeremy Robson wrote at the Blackcats list, amplifying points he has made here. “But it would have been a whole lot better than the mess we are in right now. Quinn needs to stop being everybody’s friend and playing the genial gent and get his finger out.” Well put, and it produced this superb analysis from Chris Russell, a new voice here but very welcome …

I actually believe this is little to do with Quinn right now, but more to do with Ellis Short.

From a business perspective you look at our squad and even being conservative – McCartney, Bardsley, Ferdinand, Kilgallon, Healy must equate to somewhere near £120k/week. If Ellis has taken a look at the squad, its quite logical for him to look at Quinn and ask some pointed questions on the sanctioning of those signings/level of contracts.

Yes, they kept us up and so on, but we’re talking pure business, rather than fan and the associated level of sentimentality that comes with that.

With the above in mind, has Ellis then said to Quinn/Bruce – Ok, well if the signings someone who is, for want of better terms, a highly regarded professional (so not NZogbia) then ok, we`ll look at that but otherwise you`ll need to wheel and deal.

This would fit with the German defender we were after (didnt he just miss out on the World Cup?) and more than likely the strongly linked Gyan (World Cup Player). When the German defender fell through, Bruce was then struggling and turned to what he knew – ie: Bramble, on the cheap. This would also fit with some of the new signings too.

Either way, from all the magic carpet bravado of a few seasons back, something’s changed. Is that down to there being no value in football right now, the new homegrown and financial rules coming into play or internal issues, we simply don’t know.

I also think there`s more than meets the eye on Jones, his strained relationship with Bruce would certainly be a factor, but possibly Bruce trying to placate Ellis could probably be thrown in the mix. As others have said far more astutely, getting rid without a replacement in the bag isn’t good.

Personally, I’d have kept Jones. Defensive headers we all know about but I still believe he’s one of those players you could make work for you. Put him in a team who know how to ping a ball into the box and I think you`ll see a different player. I fully expect him to get 10-15 goals for Stoke this season if they can keep him fit.

Agree with the comments on left back, Rico isn’t the answer in fact he’s possibly one of the biggest questions in the team along with Steed, who I still think looks rather good without ultimately creating very much. We’ll probably see Bardsley/Ferdinand there on sun, with Rico in front of them. Still trying to work out his baggio rats tail, my conclusion was that it helps his balance similar to a cat, however if its flowing in the wind nature can wrap Adam Johnson’s legs up ninja stylee, every little helps.

Biggest issue for me would be width, width gives you options and Hutton’s contribution last season was noticable. Hopefully Wolves will spank the mags back into reality, always did like Mick Mac.

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4 thoughts on “How cold business realities may be guiding Quinn and Bruce”

  1. Employment laws do apply to footballers, Tony. And many of them are reluctant to take a drop in wages until they have to.
    I think that Quinn, Short and, to a lesser extent, Bruce are very wary of shelling out huge amounts of money on average players. Roy Keane did and is learning his lesson at Ipswich. Keane wasted an awful lot of money on hunches like Stokes, Diouf, Chimbonda, Chopra and Healey. I would imagine that the owner, with his astute buisnessman’s hat on, will be reluctant to sanction spending of that magnitude again. Bruce knows that and has to work with it.
    Two more players before Tuesday and that will be it for the year. I would scrap the January window and make teams work with what they have got. That may contribute to the keeping down of transfer fees and wages – or, on the other hand, it may well push them up again. To quote F.S Trueman, “I really don’t know what’s going on out there”.
    Still, if Wigan can win at Spurs, maybe we can do the same against City.

  2. Tony

    It happens all the time. Players get paid off, regardless of whether the contact gets torn up or not. Jones was offloaded with 2M in his back pocket by all accounts. When you’ve paid 6 or 7 mill for a player such as McCartney you can’t afford to tear up their contracts and throw away whatever they are worth in the transfer market. Having spent about 12 por 13 million on those two (and which I know sounds idiotic in the cold light of day, a couple of years on), the club no doubt that there are still idiots about who migh give us a few million back. There’s no rule about stupidity repeating itself somewhere down the line. Ferdinand is the lesser of two evils. If I was the manager of say Barnsley or Doncaster Rovers, I wouldn’t take McCartney for no fee and his first month’s wages to be honest.

  3. This may well be a stupid question, never having been accused of being smart, but couldn’t you just teminate the contracts of players who are no longer needed. I realise there would be a financial penalty but wouldn’t be better for all concerned as the players could then move on as free agents.

  4. Do we know each other from way back Chris? Are you the same Chris Russell? If so, great to see you are still as passionate as ever. If not, great post and welcome to Salut.

    It may well be down to ES. A lot of our current problems come down to the profligacy shown by Keane, and the free reign that Quinn gave him in lumbering us with players that were overpriced and are overpaid. Ferdinand. Kilgallon, Murphy. Nosworthy, McCartney, Healy etc. Short’s lack of familarity with the sport may have caused him to underestimate the difficulty with shipping out players who are no longer needed. We are bearing the brunt of thos profligate times.

    Jones has gone so let’s leave that aside. The reality for Quinn is to make it abundantly clear to ES that we will go down if we don’t bring in a proven goal scorer, and make no bones about it. We can’t win a game if Darren Bent doesn’t score. How do we know that? Because we haven’t done so for 12 months and that’s unlikely to change as a result of Welbeck’s arrival. Illustrate the cost of a major signing and wages is likely to be minimal compared to the cost of relegation. If he doesn’t understand football then he can understand the language of money as he’s made a pile of it.

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