So it came and pretty much went. In complete contrast to last year, it seems that there were hardly any notable signings for the top teams in the EPL. The biggest signings seem to have been Cahill and de Bruyne to Chelsea. One possible explanation may come from the below article:
Of course it is entirely possible that the article is all made up. I mean let’s be honest The FCF is a website I have been to, well once to be honest. That was to read this article that was forwarded to me. The article itself also has no real hard evidence. It is going on the say so of a man renamed “Steve”; and when it comes to “Steve’s” evidence, we have to take the say so of the reporter that he saw this all on screens. Would it really have been that hard to take a few photos (maybe with any names blotted out)? The only transfer specifically named is that of Andy Carroll, and once again his proof is a report that he has, that nobody else has seen. I understand the need for secrecy but it all seems a bit too “convenient” and in this day and age where anybody can write something on the internet (as I am doing here in fact), and can do so with a certain degree of anonymity. After all it is all about the hits and clicks, right??
Then there is the actual mention of the Andy Carroll transfer. Going back to last year, Liverpool probably already had the offer for Fernando Torres on the table from Chelsea for 50 million. They knew they had to bring in another striker, otherwise they risked having the same problem with Suarez. At that early stage nobody really knew how great Suarez would turn out to be, and even if he was great there was always the chance of injury (or possibly even suspension). So Liverpool were looking for a new striker. Comolli had made it fairly clear that they would be buying players largely based on statistics, and the owners (and Kenny) seemed happy enough. Comolli had a track record at Spurs for buying young players that would turn out to be good/great players, and it made sense for him to keep doing what he does best. So looking back to about a year ago, trying to find a striker that fits that bill (young, and statistically doing well) and playing for a team that would be willing to part with him on deadline day, and Andy Carroll isn’t that far off the mark. Newcastle, in Mike Ashley, had an owner who would be more than happy to pocket the money from the sales of one of his stars. Andy Carroll had also had an impressive start to the premiership scoring against the likes of Liverpool and Manchester United at a young age in his first season in the premiership.
It did come about as a bit of a surprise but let’s be honest, it’s the last day, and the owners want to ensure they get off on the right start with the fans by showing them that they were happy to back the team. If we had bought Suarez and sold Torres in that window, without buying one more major signing, there would likely have been an uproar about the owners, and that Liverpool may have jumped out of the frying pan into the fire. Still it is possible that the article is correct, and goal scoring aside I still think Andy Carroll has added something to the club. Then there is also the fact that this was all new to Liverpool at that stage. This was the first transfer window for Kenny, the owners and Comolli and you can excuse some degree of uncertainty.
Ignoring all that, what if it is true. What if there have been a number of players that have ended up moving from one club to another purely by these shadow sales? Maybe the teams have become aware of this issue and that may well be why this transfer window was one of the dullest in recent history. A number of free signings, and a lot of loans, but not many players permanently moving from one club to the next. If that is the case then it is great if the market has wised up. After all, there is a lot of money involved and you’d like to think that those in charge do know what is going on. However, you assume that if it is true, then those guys that are heavily invested in this will probably find another way, or may well just become part of the system, similar to the modern day agent spreading transfer rumours about his players to get interest in them going.