Sunday, September 2, 2012

Transfer Window - My thoughts

The Real Madrid Perspective

Luka Modric: He was ‘the’ player Real Madrid were after all transfer season. I am not the greatest fan of Modic and would have preferred either Cazorla for half that amount or even Hazard who has had an excellent start to his Chelsea career, but Modric it is. Mourinho has done very well in his two seasons at Bernabeu – So when he says he has a plan, we trust him. Welcome to Bernabeu, Luca! Here’s a superb analysis on what that plan could be -

Defensive Midfield: Mourinho prefers to play two pivots with Alonso and Khedira being his first choice players last season. Also, last year he had a problem of plenty on the bench with four backup players. But look what happened - Sahin left on loan, Granero left for QPR, Lass went to Anzhi and Altintop to Galatasaray. While there is delight to see La$$ and Altintop leave, losing Granero is a big disappointment. The four of them have been replaced by just one player – Michael Essien, on loan! Would have loved to keep Grenero, but I guess we will be fine in this department. There is the January window in case of any problems with squad depth.

Right Back: This is the only position where Real Madrid could/should have done better. Selling Dani Carvajal, who was seen as an obvious replacement to Arbeloa, to Bayer Leverkusen for 5M Euros was disappointing. Also disappointing was that Madrid did not buy any replacement – Unless Essien was bought in to play in that role, I am not sure. Dani though could be back in Madrid in the next two years, as we have a buyback clause.

Final thoughts: The nucleolus of the squad remains the same. Modric has arrived to add more options in attack. Despite selling players worth as much as 40 million Euros, none of them were first teamers. Squad rotation has never been a part of Mourinho’s game plan, so trimming the wage bill is welcome.

Overall rate it 8/10 – with losing Granero and Carvajal obvious disappointments. One of those rare summers where we make a net profit is hugely welcome J

The Rest
  • Man City have signed 50 million pounds of rubbish. Chelsea have signed OK, but not enough to compete for the title, especially under Di Matteo. United have bought the premier league title for 24 million pounds, although City will run them close.
  • Arsenal is one of those clubs most neutrals want to see do well. They were really lucky (so were Chelsea) to finish in the Champions League positions. But instead of rebuilding they sold their best two players again and bought just one player worthy of wearing their shirt – Cazorla. They probably still might have enough to pip the 4th spot, but as Liverpool is finding out it is much easier to stay in the top 4 then to get back from a position outside. Apart from the Champions League money involved, attracting players even if you have the money in the bank becomes very tough without CL football. I am still predicting 4th for Arsenal, but sadly the club is all about making more insane profits for its owners, not about winning trophies.
  • Barcelona for all that La Masia greatness they proclaim, continued to outspend Real Madrid. Under the Jose Morinho era, Real Madrid have spent less than both Barcelona and Manchester United. Fact. 

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