Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Movers and shakers

Reflections on the club's activities in the transfer window from Paul tomorrow, but, in the meantime, what else of note happened on deadline day?

We looked on as several targets moved elsewhere: ex-Villa defender Liam Ridgewell continued on his tour of the West Midlands, joining West Brom from Birmingham and Ravel Morrison, the subject of a rejected bid from us earlier in the month, somewhat surprisingly left Man Utd for Championship football with West Ham. Fat Sam went striker-crazy, also adding Bristol City's Nicky Maynard and Barnsley's Ricardo Vaz Te to his forward line - but following his side's 5-1 pummelling by previously hapless Ipswich he may be feeling he should have concentrated on the other end of the pitch...

Meanwhile, Wayne Bridge, a player with whom we've been strongly linked in the past, was recruited on loan by the Mackems and so could face us at St James' Park next month. They've been able to do the deal on the cheap too, paying a fraction of his wages in a similar deal to the one struck by MK Dons for Alan Smith.

When Bolton steamed in with an improved £7m bid for Wilfried Zaha, I suspected it would kick off a furious bidding war - but against the odds everything remained quiet and the winger remains a Crystal Palace player. Equally surprising was the silence surrounding Huddersfield's Jordan Rhodes and Blackburn's Junior Hoilett.

Several old boys were on the move too. Sebastien Bassong swapped Spurs for Wolves on loan (a deal I really feel we should have pursued ourselves), tonight's opponents Blackburn identified QPR's out-of-favour right-back Bradley Orr as the man to lead them to safety (yes, me neither) and, in perhaps the most surprising move of the day, Spurs took a gamble on chronic physio-botherer Louis Saha. Perhaps Droopy's mind's elsewhere at the moment...

On the subject of old boys, Rocky played and scored a year to the day that Jabba lined his pockets with £35m of Liverpool's cash. That makes it a cool £5m per goal. Meanwhile, Demba Ba has more than twice as many in just six months, and came on a free. Doesn't look quite such a bad deal now as it did then, does it?

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