The big football news last week was all about the January transfer “window”. Well the window is now shut. I am not a fan of this artificial system.
It boosts the big money Premiership clubs. OK cash filters down to the smaller clubs selling their star players but does it help football?
It was looking like a non-event as far as our Seagulls were concerned. We sold Ashley Barnes, and after a disrupting delay, Liam Bridcutt, but failed to bring target players to the Amex.
Striker Lewis Grabban stayed at Bournemouth. Shaun Williams chose Millwall.
It seemed Brighton were careful with the purse strings, claiming adherence to the Fair Play Rules, and would go into February short of a striker and cover in midfield. But with the window closing midfielder Dale Stephens joined from Charlton.
Then on a free transfer came the eleventh hour recruitment of David Rodriguez from La Liga side Celta Vigo. Spanish will soon be Seagulls’ first language!
The Bridcutt leaving saga, would he wouldn’t he, could have been more upsetting if young Rohan Ince hadn’t already been recognised as a more than adequate replacement.
The fee of £2.5million should come in useful. Time to take our hats off to Poyet? Being honest he wasn’t an Albion favourite leaving in the way he did.
He took assistant Mauricio Taricco and Charlie Oatway with him and now has pinched Bridcutt. But credit where credit is due, he has transformed Sunderland and currently is achieving amazing results.
He put Liam straight into his team for the “derby” clash at Newcastle – and won 3 – 0.
I was worried on the speculation that Will Buckley might be on his way to Crystal Palace. Bad enough to loose him but salt in wounds if to Palace!!
On Sunday Brighton were away at Watford.
For Seagulls’ fans the result was frustrating.
They lost 2 – 0 leaving them 9th in the Championship and seven whole points away from the play-offs. I’m afraid it was the same old story - not being able to score.
Watford managed a goal in each half whilst we (LuaLua), hit the post and missed good chances.
We had an equaliser when Ulloa “scored” but the ref’s assistant put his flag up. I’m afraid a bad back pass from skipper Gordon Greer gifted the Hornets their second goal. Leaving Ulloa as lone striker up-front isn’t working for Coach Oscar Garcia so perhaps it is time for a rethink?
He did give Dale Stephens his debut in midfield and did bring on sub David Rodriguez for his first start but the Seagulls were already two goals down.
2,000 Brighton fans travelled to Vicarage Road and they must have been disappointed.
The transfer window hasn’t done us any favours and learning that Bridcutt was a star on his debut for Sunderland didn’t help.
The lack of goals and league wins leaves us looking at mid-table rather than promotion.
We do have the next FOUR games at the Amex (Doncaster, Leeds, Hull (cup) & Wigan) and nine points are needed!
It is too early to console ourselves with “now we concentrate on the cup!” but it certainly helps to think what might be IF we knock out Hull in the televised FA Cup match at the Amex on Monday 17th February.
I’m thinking Sunderland at home in the quarter-finals. Wembley would then be a possibility.
Well I can dream!