This was the most important position needing strengthening at the start of this season and damningly it still is.
Liked what I saw of Gregory (goal scorer). Maybe Stretton too. Where will Marriott be, on loan, injured? But at least one more real goal scorer needed.
So, on other threads I've introduced the fact that we are fostering an assistance puppy.
His name is Miekle (not chosen by us) and he's a 9 week old handful.
I just thought that I would set up a little thread to give periodic updates on his progress.
It avoids messing up other threads and was a suggestion from @CBRammette and @Anag Ram so thank you both.
Here's a snap from playtime right now.
Great to see Curtis back, and he made a difference just in those few minutes.
And Waghorn. I've been so critical of him this season. Cometh the hour cometh Waggy! He was colossal. Great interview too. Very passionate but very honest too.
Not posted in a long time..... This season has sucked the enjoyment of football from me.
I'd like to say what a massive relief we are still in the Championship.
Its tough being a rams fan sometimes, but never dull.
Best wishes to all my fellow rams fans and enjoy the break from the stress and worry of relegation. I raise a glass to you all. Enjoy your weekend and here's hoping the off the field nonsense is resolved soon!
I've been thinking about this a lot the past 24 hours and although I have largely felt some sympathy towards Rooney as he picked up a mess and hasn't been backed financially at all despite said mess, he's still got a squad of players which on paper is probably more talented than what Nigel Clough had to deal with. Would we agree with that? The likes of Buxton, Brayford, Roberts at the back, Paul Green in midfield etc were all lower league grafters with limited ability. On ability the likes of Tom Lawrence would walk into that side Clough Jnr had. Rooney is not getting the best out of this side and for me longer term the club needs a rebuild from lower leagues and Scotland for financial reasons like Clough had to do. I'd like a proven lower league manager, preferably a younger version of one to do the rebuild.
You can question their motives but they would have more than anticipated this furore and will judge that in the next few days calmer heads will prevail at FIFA, UEFA, the various FAs and the Premier League, plus the TV broadcasters.
TV money may be on the wane but if you were a middle ranking PL club - Everton (about to invest £500m in a new stadium with a business case that depends upon that level of TV money), or Southampton or West Ham - you would know that the reason that you get the money that you do get is because of the viewing figures from the UK but more importantly, abroad, for the matches against the 6 clubs. So, when you consider throwing them out of the EPL, the 6 will judge, what are you going to do when Sky renegotiate the TV deal because the 6 major TV audience generators have all left. And that deal is substantially lower than the current one and it then means that you can't buy Jesse Lingard, or pay him the deal that he wants/demands. And you multiply the drop in revenue by the three years of the contract. The sums will be huge.
And if you're CEO of the FA, which, let's face it is a pretty feckless organisation anyway, what are you going to think about losing the 6 clubs from the FA Cup - the ones that the minnows all want to play. What will the BBC pay for that contract? Ditto the Carabao Cup and the EFL. Both competitions now so diluted anyway that they've lost any sense of the glory and importance they used to carry.
And then there's UEFA and FIFA. Both organisations renowned for their probity and upholding of high principles, rattling sabres about the sanctity of the sport and the importance of the fans. Yeah right. First and foremost they want what's right for UEFA and FIFA. They won't want a CL competition without the 12 clubs because their TV/advertising revenues will plummet; they will want a WC with all the main players and all the main countries at their strongest because that's how they make millions out of Coca Cola, that well known health drink.
Lets not forget either the players, who love communicating with their fans so much that they pay agencies £4,000 a month to write a few inane comments on their social media accounts for the fans - We go again! If you are Messi or Ronaldo you have made your money. You might be able to afford a few words for the fans, until Juventus and Barca (1bn euros in debt) tell you to shut up. What if you're Mason Mount though? Just starting out on a career. You haven't made your FU money yet, nor have you won much. You didn't imagine playing for Southampton in your dreams as a kid, you saw yourself at the top of the tree winning trophies, playing for England. Your employer tells you to say nothing controversial; your agent (who only has your best interests at heart - yeah right) says let's hold on and see what happens here. There's money to be made. You think about earning a good slice of £4bn, setting yourself up for life and playing 30 games a season with a bit of travel thrown in. All of a sudden your dreams change.
There's the TV companies of course. They're hard bitten business negotiators as we know. Why would they pay the same for what they might think is going to be a lesser product - less watched, less advertising revenue, less Carra v Gary? No more MNF or Super Sunday.
And then there's the patsies in the deal - because every rip off has to have a patsy - us. We don't go, we don't buy season tickets or merchandise. Empty stadiums? No bother - we've just had a season of that. Went OK. They'll come back eventually and if not then there's China, or Indonesia or Vietnam and South Korea. All those hotbeds of Tosketh and Trafford and the Kings Road.
We've been here before when Kerry Packer did his thing and shook up a whole sport. He actually made it work for a few years. Who's to say this won't be the same? They've judged that the authorities and clubs won't have any bottle when push comes to shove and that the TV companies have shareholders to please and the players (led by Gordon Taylor and their agents - ye Gods) will do as they're told and the fans long since lost their financial clout. They might just be right.