To the mirth of just about everyone, Aaron Ramsey sent a heartfelt message of thanks to the fans and then left the PR apprentice to finish off the message. “Kind regards”, to the mirth of just about everyone, was a businesslike end.
Mind you, I’d be inclined to do the same having seen Arsenal’s terse statement. Aaron, ten years in the marketing department, received the thanks reserved for the anonymous cog in the corporate machine.
He’s signed a £400k deal although even that brought it’s own comedy moment:
The trouble was Juve talked out of school and Marcotti confirmed Ornstein’s words. Fair play to Aaron’s team for negotiating a deal giving him a bigger weekly wage than Mesut Ozil. The pressure in Turin will be more intense than the German faces here but I do think Ramsey is more capable of delivering than the German. That said, it’s a pretty low bar he has to rise above.
We have gone over the mismanagement of contracts before which doesn’t change the situation we find ourselves in now. Will it change the future? There’s hope that this winter’s trouble focuses minds on how we deal with renewals.
There’s a defined limit to the length of player’s contracts to the point where clubs are easily able to avoid this situation. Arsene spoke about it becoming the norm. “You will see more and more players going into the final year of their contract,” Wenger observed. “In the next 10 years, it will become usual.”
You Want Glib, I’ll Give You Glib
I’m not convinced this is going to be true. More likely, it strikes me, is that clubs will sign players to five-year deals and if renewal isn’t agreed at the end of Year 3, a sale happens from that point on. There’s the obvious proviso that if a player doesn’t want to move, he won’t but that will be a minority of cases.
Most players can’t afford their careers to stall so will reluctantly look at a move. And let’s be honest, the players who this will impact are those who are, relatively speaking, easily replaceable and upgradable. The likes of Ramsey can sit tight and wait although I’m pretty sure he will freely admit to frustration at sitting on the bench.
It’s why I think Mesut Ozil will depart next summer. Wasting three or four years just training is a glib assertion tossed on paper. The reality is that frustration kicks in if you just sit around not playing, as many a professional opined in the past. To believe every professional is cut from the same cloth as Winston Bogarde is naive at best.
From the club perspective, the self-sustaining model is more reliant on player ‘profits’ than ever. That’s the same with every club – Liverpool’s ‘record’ profit relied entirely on Coutinho’s sale – bar those whose owners flagrantly flout FFP rules with seeming impugnity.
I wonder if this is the tipping point for another seismic change within football. Professionalism in the 1800s, minimum wage in the 1960s, Bosman two decades later; power swung from owner to players and is almost as extreme. There’s a reckoning coming which will see it slip back toward the clubs in the near future. I’m not sure what the trigger will be, but it feels like one is due.
This morning sees the sad news that Gordon Banks, England’s World Cup winning goalkeeper, passed away aged 81. For many people, he remains the finest we produced and his save from Pele in 1970 is still hailed as the best in the competition’s history.
Best ever? David Seaman against Sheffield United gives him a run for his money.
It’s mad that despite his reputation, my enduring memory is of Peter Storey getting the better of him in 1971
Sorry, Banksy, and all that.
It was a different era, to be cliched. Banks wore gloves in Mexico but not at Hillsborough, relying instead on his hands and a good coating of saliva for grip on the ball. Mind you, most goalkeeping gloves from that era would barely pass muster as cheap gardening gloves these days.
Rest in Peace.