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6 things we learned about football over the transfer window.

 

1. The FFP is a joke.

Fans are supposed to be impressed by the new FFP inquiry Paris Saint Germain are facing after spending more than 300 million on 2 players. It’s been only 3 years since their last €20 million fine.

We can expect similar wrist slapping and larger fees again next summer.

Jean Michel Aulas, 68 year old Lyon chairman, tweeted a gif of  masturbating kangaroo and labelled it Nasser al-kaleif (PSG chairman) and financial fair play. Paroled tax evaded Uli Hoeness declared that fans will soon get sick of this flaunting of money rules. Hoeness was convicted of a failure to pay €27 million.

2. Chelsea are in self destruct mode.

Having publicly alienated one of the world’s best strikers, Diego Costa, and then opted against selling him, Chelsea then earmarked Lukaku as his replacement. After Manchester United signed him, they were forced to sign their 3rd choice option, Morata, as a safety net for when the Costa situation explodes (as it will). They then proceeded to sell Matic, one of their key players, to an arch rival. They then replaced him with Leicester’s Danny Drinkwater, for the same fee. A slew of late stage transfers were lined up with other clubs for players like Barkley and Oxlaide Chamberlaine, only for the players themselves to back out of the deals.

Antonio Conte hardly even tries to mask.his public anger at the fantasy a side so small can possibly compete over four competitions. All the while player after player is loaned out. This team sure hates following up with successive winning seasons.

 

3. But Barcelona saw this and said Hold my beer.

Having confirmed 3 times Neymar was going nowhere we all saw what happened. Having tried 5 times with bids as high as £145m they failed to sign Coutinho and in the process alienated him from his club and fanbase. They did the same with Martinez and Seri. And Bellerin and Veratti.

They then signed Dembele for 10 times what he cost last summer. A player who, while promising, can’t be put on the same level as Neymar.

They signed Paulinho like it was a huge capture and were subsequently publicly criticised by Xavi for breaking the way Barca have played since Cruyff.

Couldn’t sell Gomez and failed on last day attempts for former Real Madrid players Di Maria and Ozil.

At time of writing they’ve now announced 3 times that Messi has signed a new contract. As I write this he still hasn’t.

 

4. Italian sides are finally getting smart.

No overpriced signings for “the next” anyone. Just considered business. Milan with the deal of the season with Bonucci and adding Biglia and Silva to the bedrock of young Italian talent they’ve been fostering, including Donarumma.  Juve signing Matuidi and a slew of young Italian players likely to populate the national team going forward. Inter signing a new defence, defensive central midfielders and loaning out gabigol.

Somebody’s turned on the common sense in Serie A.

5. Throwing a tantrum won’t get you that transfer.

Hear that Coutinho, Van Dijk, Seri, Martinez, Costa, Veratti, Belotti, Mahrez? Dembele being the exception that proves the rule.

6. £75 million for Lukaku is starting to look like mighty good business.

Looking at how much Lacazette, Mbappe, Dembele, Morata, Neymar, etc cost, United underpaid for a young striker who still arguably hasn’t hit his best form.

Left later in the window and Everton could reasonably have stuck on another 75 million.

Feature image: the guardian

Alan Walsh – Dublin

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