Date:Wednesday April 28 2010
Most Blades fans are beginning to put this disappointing season behind them and are starting to anticipate the likely comings and goings as the club continue to realign budgets for the second season after parachute payments ceased.
There is no doubt that the end of the season will see a great many previously obscenely overpaid average players in The Premiership and The Championship looking for jobs. It remains to be seen if these players and their agents will get a dose of reality and realise that the financial constraints affecting everybody else might actually apply to them as well.
So what about our club. There is much speculation in the press and on the fans forums about virtually every player in our already thread bare squad. Monty is said to be off to the North East somewhere, Hendo is a target for the Baggies, Harps is going to Fulham, Geary is being released, can we still afford to keep Naysmith, will Glen Little have a contract next season, Quinn is off to Swansea, and Camara`s contract is up. Will Morgan be offered new terms? All speculation at this time, but in a week or two we will know a little more, and there is always a bombshell in there somewhere.
The legions of loanees will be returning to their clubs, or have already gone. Simonsen was a solid performer but he is contracted as one of Stoke`s three senior keepers - meaning he will spend his Saturdays watching from the stands - so we have seen the last of him. Nosworthy`s wage demands are said to be way above our budget, Seip hasn`t proved himself, Bartley is a class act and will have gained from his time at The Lane, but was only a short term solution and I am sure we will see him in the Arsenal side in the near future. Paul Connolly settled in quickly and as a specialist full back is one I would like to see return. Toni Kallio started well then had continuous injuries disrupting his loan spell, Henri Camara's season was finished, and then he came off the bench at Hillsborough and made an impact. An enigmatic player, but one who can change a game, is his time up also?
Whilst there have been many rumours about players leaving, there have been virtually none about who might be coming in. Bardsley was mentioned in an obscure thread a couple of weeks ago, and more recently Jamie Mackie but other than bits of speculation from within the club that 'a couple of foreign players ' might arrive and Blackwell mentioning that he had a few targets in mind, there has been little for us to get out teeth into and pass opinion on. It looks increasingly like a back to basics re structuring, putting the club back to pre Warnock days.
I wonder how many seats Air Malta have reserved for the pre season tour; at this rate there could be some cancellation fees to pay, and some spare accommodation at the Fortina Spa Hotel!
So with a team sheet for next seasons opening game having lots of gaps in it at this stage, who do you think will still be here, and which players do you want to see coming in during the summer?
Date:Wednesday April 28 2010
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