Yesterday (16th July) saw a positively frenetic burst of transfer activity. At least it was in terms of what has gone on so far. One out – the unwanted but recently signed Santiago Vergini off to the climes of sunny Spain on loan. And one in. The announcement that Younis Kaboul had arrived on Wearside for a medical came out of left field. His name was not one of those that the media had been touting as a potential Black Cat but obviously the spadework had been done for the deal to be finalised so quickly after Nicolas Lombaerts turned down the opportunity to come to Wearside. The Frenchman, not the Belgian, is welcomed by Pete Sixsmith who fills us in on the details that really matter.
WELCOME TO YOUNES KABOUL – EARTHQUAKE EXPECTED ANY DAY.
Another day, another player in as the squad begins to take shape for next season. After the move for Belgian central defender Nicolas Lombaerts fell through, it looks as if Kaboul was the next on the list. The deal was swiftly concluded, he passed a medical and is now following ion the footsteps of Charlie Hurley, Dave Watson and er, Steve Hetzke.
So here’s the lowdown on Younes.
* he was born in Saint-Julien-en-Genovois which is in the Alpine province of Haute-Savoie. It is close to the Swiss border and boasts the 73rd best casino in France.
* he played for the legendary Guy Roux at Auxerre for three seasons. Roux took over at the Stade de l’Abbe Deschamps in 1964 and left in 2005, making him the longest serving coach since Asterix the Gaul. Djibril Cisse was there at the same time.
* he moved to Tottenham Hotspur in 2007, playing 21 games in his first season. At the end of that year Good ole ‘Arry decided to flog him off.
* Roy Keane fancied him and tried to sign him along with Steed Malbranque (good man), Teemu Tainio (ok for a Finn) and Pascal Chimbonda (a friend of El Hadj Diouf – says everything). He wasn’t keen to come and sloped off to Portsmouth for a couple of years.
* he did well at Portsmouth and earned a move back to Spurs where GO’A said that he was a “late developer” and played him regularly.
* he was made club captain in June 2014 under Mauricio Pochettino which shows that he was well thought of – even if he only made 11 appearances.
* he is 6’4” tall – 4” taller than Dave Watson. That 4” may not mean a lot to you but to men of my age it means a great deal. Charlie Hurley was only 6’3” and the aforementioned Steve Hetzke a mere 6’2”. Tommy Sorenson and Quinny are the same height, so if he does as well as either of those two, we will be highly delighted.
* he becomes the ninth French born player to turn out for us, following in such distinguished footsteps as Lillian Laslandes, Anthony Le Tallac and David Bellion.
* he appears to be tattoo free, a rarity amongst current footballers.
* he made his Spurs debut against us in 2007, the game when Michael (“If it moves, I’ll back it”) Chopra bagged a 90th minute winner.
Should he remain fit, he could well prove to be a considerable asset for us – big and strong and a sound organiser. Hopefully, there will be no earthquakes on Wearside other than those caused by centre forwards hitting the ground as he tackles them.