Wednesday, August 07, 2013

To forgive and forget?

It's with mixed feelings that I report on the arrival of Loic Remy on a season-long loan from QPR.

On the one hand, the signing represents our first real bit of transfer business of the close season, if you discount the acquisition of teenage midfielder Olivier Kemen. Remy is also a much-needed striker, and one who performed well in a struggling side last year. Furthermore, the temporary nature of the deal means that we aren't committed to paying out a hefty salary on a long contract if it doesn't work out - though mention has been made of a £2m loan fee.

On the other hand, though, the Frenchman not only has a rape charge hanging over him (as a Newcastle player there's nothing new there...) but is also a notorious mercenary. Not that you'd know it from what he said upon signing: "I was very flattered by the club's interest in me back in January and also very happy that they showed interest in me again this summer." The reality is that he wasn't flattered with enough wonga to come to St James' Park in January, preferring the significantly heftier pay packet on offer from the London club, and is now arguably only happy at the club's continued interest in him because he suspected his previous decision may well have torpedoed it. Actions speak louder than words, though, and so if he can prove his commitment to the cause and demonstrate his talents on the pitch, all will be forgiven.

One definite positive to emerge from events is that our old chum 'Appy 'Arry appears to be on collision course with his employers. One minute he was adamant that Remy would only be allowed to leave if QPR recouped their £8m outlay, and the next he was backtracking and conceding that a loan deal would be a possibility after all. Did someone have a word? He should be careful of turning face so quickly - he's in danger of catching himself in the eye with some of that jowl flab.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Exactly how is he a mercenary? He was coming into another country and had no emotional ties to either club so he chose the one that was offering the most money..... I would have done exactly the same and so would most others.

Your view that he is mercenary simply because he didn't choose the mighty NUFC over lowly QPR is the reason we NUFC fans get a bad name for assuming our right as a big club!

10:01 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I kind of agree, but is there really anything to actually forgive? He had an offer from us, then got a better offer from another club, who no doubt said they were investing heavily in the team to get into the CL etc etc etc. Wouldn't we all do the same if we were offered two jobs and one paid much more than the other?

10:17 am  
Blogger Ben said...

By all accounts we put a lot of time and effort into pursuing and setting up a deal in January, and Remy was even lined up for a medical, only to be lured away by the prospect of more cash at QPR. OK, so he didn't actually renege on a verbal or formal agreement to sign (as far as we know), but it still left a bitter taste in the mouth.

The dictionary definition of a mercenary is someone motivated by monetary or material gain. As you both note, that was Remy's prime reason for signing for QPR - so in that instance, at least, the mercenary cap fits snugly.

You'll also note that I made no reference to the relative statures (actual or perceived) of ourselves and QPR, so that first criticism is unfounded I'm afraid. What can't be disputed is that in January we were hardly overachieving, but the prospects for long-term Premier League football were significantly slimmer for QPR. If Remy was taken in by talk of Champions League qualification from the division's basement team, then he'd be a real mug. All the more reason to assume it was all just about money.

1:13 pm  

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