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Ignore The Rumours ! Sit Back And Wait !
Monday, 20th Jan 2020 10:22

Some Saints fans melting down to after Ralph Hasenhuttl dared to hint that the need to spend in the transfer window was not so desperate, add to that a home defeat and the panic button was being pressed by some.

So what did Ralph say that caused some to take to social media with comments like

"I heard a Ralph interview on the radio earlier today, that any incoming transfers were on hold for the time being."

The actual truth is he spoke at the Wolves pre match press conference and said:

“It’s not long ago that I said it’s important to bring somebody in, but the way the team has played in the last weeks, I wouldn’t say it’s changed my mind, but we have to be very careful with what we do.

“We have to think about how we do it because I think the team deserves credit for the very good job they are doing."

“We don’t do anything just because we have to do something. When we want to bring a player in then it really has to make sense."

So in what part of that statement has he said that transfers are on hold ?

What he has said is that the need to sign someone is now not so great and he is right there, the club will want to avoid another panic buy such as two years ago when they brought in Guido Carrillo for a club record transfer fee and within a couple of months his Saints career was effectively over with Mark Hughes not rating him at all.

That has had repercussions ever since as has the signings of Mario Lemina , Mohamed Elyounoussi and even Jannik Vestergaard, all players who were signed for big fees and all of whom failed to reproduce at Premier League level.

Ralph Hasenhuttl is playing mind games when he made those statements recently, he want to give the impression that we are not in a panic, that we are happy to go through the window without a signing if we can't get the right man, but he was very careful to point out that he knows the problem and nothing has changed in that respect and if the right man becomes available then he will go for him.

Other rumours look to try and blame a lack of signing so far on Chairman Gao and the finger pointing at him is that he is more interested in selling players than buying, that Gao wanted to sell Che Adams to Leeds United and it was only Ralph putting his foot down that stopped it happening.

This stems from rumours in national newspapers and is used by some to criticise the board, but actually if the story is true then it shows who is in charge of transfers and that is Ralph Hasenhuttl.

Another comment suggested that we were about to accept a £30 million bid for Ryan Bertrand, again this was touted as evidence of a lack of ambition, personally I would be concerned if we didn't accept £30 million for a player who will turn 31 later this year and has perhaps 2 years left as a top level player, something that to be frank he hasn't been too many times in the past year or so.

I find myself writing a story like this every January, the media put out stories that have no real basis in fact and are mainly rumours put out by agents in order to try and drum up business for their clients, sometimes 2 or 3 times down the chain in the actual transfer.

To give an example, Saints are being heavily linked with Joe Bryan of Fulham, we are said to be in competition with Atalanta and Watford to name but two clubs, who is telling the press this ? well it won't be Saints, Watford or Atalanta, it will be his agent who will also be trying to generate interest in Ryan Bertrand so that the chain could start to move, it will go back further along the line, perhaps the agents of potential left backs to replace Bryan at Fulham will also be trying to stir things up.

These is a chain in transfers if Bertrand was to leave Saints it could trigger moves going back 4 -5 clubs as players are sold and replaced, truth is only a very small percentage of transfer rumours actually happen, that is for a number of reasons but with only two windows a year the rumour mill is very condensed.

So we all need to sit back and not take every story in the press as being the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, the only truth is usually that any rumour is not started by a club, football clubs never go out and brief the press about their transfer plans, it only puts the price up, the only exceptions are as in the case of Virgil Van Dijk leaving here for Liverpool when the deal was done and dusted between the player and club and Saints wouldn't budge, so Liverpool used the media to apply pressure.

We all know that we need a new central defender, Ralph Hasenhuttl knows that but he is trying to deflect interest away from that by saying we need full backs and that we are not desperate to buy as we would have been had we not won a few games over the past month.

Let's not use a lack of incoming so far as something to start off more discontent in and around the club, if we find the right man at the right price and he want's to come here then the deal will happen, but all those three things have to be in place otherwise we run the risk of just adding to the list of expensive signings who although may be £20 million players in name and transfer fee, but are not in terms of their quality.

Photo: Action Images

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janecook added 11:15 - Jan 20
Why did we get Danso he hasn't even been played at centre half in the league and doesn't even make the bench? On Saturday Jack Stephens had a awful afternoon. Not only did he give away the penalty, but he was also partly to blame for the winner as well. He has had some good games but is still only a championship quality centre half at best. We have had this problem for 3 seasons now and its about time it was fixed.

landsdownsaint added 11:45 - Jan 20
I’d say we desperately need new defenders is RH again saying he knows best ? Either he’s delusional or Gao has said coach what u got ... the latter me thinks

bartley41 added 12:05 - Jan 20
I always read your articles and seldom disagree with what you say, they are mostly thoughtful and balanced.

It is just a pity that you do not write for the local newspaper , who make so many errors.

underweststand added 12:07 - Jan 20
A slow day in a journo's office, a backhander from an agent who wants to move his player on , or a comment taken out of context all make headlines nowadays , and is then copied and replayed on numerous sites is as far from the truth as you can imagine.
Almost everything Nick wrote above has some basis in fact ..or in this case... fiction.

In the last two summer breaks I've counted more than 20 different "links" of players we are supposed to show interest in. The mere fact that one of our scouts may have been to watch a match where "a certain player " was involved is merely part of the scout's job , and doesn't mean we are about to buy them at some inflated price - as everytime a lower league club sees a chance to sell their "star" to a Prem.side ..the price suddenly doubles ..knowing an eventual fee may keep "the little club" solvent for another year., and lead managers to a.."who?" comment, or admitting they aren't at all interested.

Our recent "success bubble" burst on Saturday, and in some sense we are " back to square one " (to quote one of the oldest footballing phrases). The prosepct of returning with any pointas at all from Palace ...or Liverpool (!) looks a bit distant just now.
We still need an extra CB and some reliable cover for our full backs...ASAP.

My main concern is suddenly in another direction. With the rumour/news/ comment that Romeu MAY move to Spain means we will lose the last of our "muscle men", with ther remainder of our squad already lacking in height and very lightweight in general.
Oriel Romeu has DAJFU over several seasons, (and predictably collected his share of yellows in the process), but it would mean that we lack that " bite" in midfield that was always there when we fielded the likes of "Wanyama and others" in the side, and they were always there to "dish it out as a reminder" to the opposition.

For all the skill and guile they may possess, Saints' lightweight MF / defence will take a bashing from those clubs who always start out with half-a-dozen 6' 4" toughies in their side, and we'd be without a "big brother" around to defend / revenge us.
Not sure any of the "rumoured contacts" will materialise, but I'd like to see a bit more "muscle" in midfield for the rest of the season.

NigD added 12:18 - Jan 20
Please somebody!
Tell me why Danso has been signed as primarily a pacey strong centre half?
Is he still at the club? Is he that bad a player???
He’s never played at centre half. Definitely the right size and presence?

Colburn added 13:09 - Jan 20
Spot on Nick. It would be mad to divulge our transfer ideas publicly, it will just push the prices up... As you say, we have to avoid scenarios like Carrillo, Lemina, etc. We are not affluent enough to waste money like that again. Must be hungry players keen to wear our shirt, not another who thinks we are a six month stepping stone to Liverpool, Man U, etc.

Colburn added 13:24 - Jan 20
In addition it seems tomorrow will give us a better indication of how long we can last without another CB addition, as it looks likely Jan will miss out with an achilles problem. Will big Kev finally get his chance?

SaintPaulVW added 13:43 - Jan 20
The sad truth is that Newspapers and websites need stories to generate readers and clicks and hence advertising revenue. The facts aren't going to get in the way of a good story.

halftimeorange added 15:40 - Jan 20
I agree with much of what has been said above but was Carillo really given a chance at Saints? He played in seven league games for us. Redmond has played in 126. Frankly I'd swap them. We would at least have some height in attack and Carillo can't be that bad, scoring on average once in every 4/5 games. I'd like to see some of the players shipped out tried with RH's current method of coaching which, despite Saturday's capitulation, seems to be paying dividends.

d_ember added 15:50 - Jan 20
I am not sure how we get to blame Stephens for the goals, he missed a tackle without which the guy would have had a free shot on goal, he was woefully outnumbered the other two times. He was "partially to blame", so were 10 others!

The Che Adams thing seems to have been stirred up by a so called, in the know, Phil Hay who has been spinning this story like a top!! As this piece say most of it is BS put about by bored and/or lazy Pressers.

Finally, if we bring someone in this January then they have to be good enough to be first choice in their position, not possibly but nailed on. I mean we need to sign a Tyrone Mings type or someone of that stature - and how much do you think that will cost?

redandwhitedee added 16:03 - Jan 20
Stephens actually was outstanding in the 1st half, he was let down by Ralph and the midfield in front of him. If Ralph had seen the bleedin’ obvious and brought Romeu on to help the over-run/tiring midfield at 1-2 (or even at 2-2) it might have been different but he persists on leaving his experienced holding midfielder on the bench.
What is the point of him being there if not for trying to hold a lead ? .. If not going to play him then at least put slattery there for some experience.
Clearly Ralph does not trust Romeu and surely he will go this month.

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