Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Wednesday paper round up

  • No progress on signings. Daniel Taylor and Ian Herbert both report very slow progress on the Parker and Santa Cruz deals, and uncertainty surrounding Kolo Toure's move. Our second choice should Toure not sign, Chelsea's Alex, is also unlikely. 48 hours after 'Scott Parker will sign within 48 hours', MCFC are doing a good impression of a club unsure about giving Mark Hughes their full backing. If it's the same old players lining up against Portsmouth, it looks like Hughes is finished.
  • Ian Ladyman writes that Hughes is thinking of relieving Richard Dunne of the captaincy, with SWP or Scott Parker (should he ever sign) favourites to take over. This would be a very serious stamping of Hughes' authority on the team, and break with the Eriksson era - but strange given how hard Hughes fought to keep Dunne in the summer. I'd make Vincent Kompany captain, if it was up to me.
  • If someone said to you in January 2008 'Richard Dunne may lose the captaincy in January 2009 - who will replace him?', you would reply - in an instant - 'Micah Richards'. But he has had a terrible 2008 and is not a serious candidate. Hughes picked Robinho to captain City at Hull, and is now looking for Kolo Toure to replace Richards in the medium term. James Ducker (The Times) reports that Richards puts his poor 2008 down to his move from right back to centre back. This is quite plausible - his attributes make him a natural full back. The problem, though, is that when he should have been learning to play full back he was bailing us out at centre half. And he's half the right back Pablo Zabaleta is. This is what I called 'The Micah Richards problem' in November.
  • Another Academy graduate who had a terrible 2008 is Michael Johnson - he played 12 of 38 possible League games. And he is, according to The Times' 'Window Watch' due to be part of the Scott Parker deal, along with £4million too. This sounds to me like terrible, terrible business. Given that Johnson signed a 5 year deal very recently, there is no reason not to keep him at the club until his injury becomes clear one way or the other. Can't we just pay West Ham £20m and be done with it?


BluePeter said...

Spot on with the suggestion of Kompany for captain, JPB.
Also think we might see a different Dunney if he was relieved of the armband, especially if he is played on the right-hand side of the centre-back pairing.
Sammi Hyypia to join him until the summer anyone?
I'd prefer Zabaletta at rightback instead of MR, but Micah can be such a good player played in the right position, as he has proved. he just has to get his head right.
Some of Hughes' selections, tactics and substitutions absolutely baffle me, but I really think we should stick with him.
Hopefully he will learn the lessons he needs to learn far quicker than any of the under-performing players.
Okay, we're hovering above the bottom three but we have the rest of the month in which to bring in even more new faces, and I still reckon there will be a big signing surprise for us before February 2nd.
Hopefully we've used up all our negativity in the Carling and FA Cups.
If that's the case who's to say we can't go all the way in the UEFA Cup - after all we've already ridden our luck on more than one occasion and it seems to be holding out.
Let's make with the positive waves

jfell said...

Not sure about Kompany for captain. He doesnt seem very vocal to me. We need a leader and I just don't think we have one at the moment.

Can someone please tell me why we haven't already signed Owen? A bid of somewhere between 4 and 8 million would surely do it. Proven premiership goal scorer and may even solve the captiancy issue. If Dunney is relieved of his captaincy by a more junior player I fear Dunney may join the Hamman/Elano/Jo anit-Hughes clique. That would surely be the end of Hughes.

Between Owen and Boj we would/should/might get a full season between them to enable us to play a quick diminuative striker alongside Santa. If we're willing to pay Parker £100 million a day I don't see Owen's wage demands being a problem.

BluePeter said...

Maybe if Kompany was made captain he would be vocal, maybe that he doesn't want to shout too much at the moment while someone else wears the armband.
I can see why Owen would initially prove enticing, but he is abit of a 'sicknote' and we've got enough of them as it is

jfell said...

...fair point about Kompany BluePeter but you wont find that out until you make him captain which is a risk if it doesnt work out. Dont get me wrong, I would love to see it work out! I rate him extremely highly and cant wait to see him at centre back - we desperately need a centre back that can pass the ball from defence to the midfield.

Despite his sicknote tendancies i still think we have the cash to risk on Owen; he would certainly raise our profile overseas and generate shirt sales.