We’re actually very surprised it took till nearly May, but finally Michael Beale has been linked properly with an ex-team’s player, namely Queens Park Rangers’ Chris Willock.
Let us be clear – we’re already bored with this.
Not a single decent name has been mooted with a switch to Ibrox, Jack Butland aside, since Todd Cantwell (who no one really knew in truth) and Nico Raskin.
We do not want Championship and League One-level players, because they won’t overcome the superior squad at Celtic.
Scotty Arfield, Allan McGregor, Steven Davis, Croatia’s Borna Barisic, Cantwell and Raskin – these are the quality we need, not guys who have never played at the top level before and are just middling journeymen.
You may agree or you might not, but as soon as we saw QPR, our hearts sank again. We don’t want to be linked with every midtable Championship or League One player, guys who aren’t Premier League level.
See, the problem we have is one might say ‘Championship is a good level’ and it is, but Rangers are a goliath compared with any team in it, and the pressure of winning for Rangers is a completely different world to the rigours of playing for a smallish team in the Championship.
The opponents are better at that level, but the pressure is infinitely lower, so we need players who can cope with the Premier League. Winning in the Premier League with Southampton or anyone else is much much harder than in the Championship, the pressure far greater. It’s much more like the pressure at Ibrox.
McGregor, Arfield, Cantwell you name it. Players with past history of withstanding that quality – look at how Joe Aribo at aforementioned Southampton has absolutely crumpled at that level. He was good, even great in flashes with us, but he has been completely exposed down there.
Look also at Lampard, who thrived at Championship Derby but has been exposed at Premier League level with all the clubs he’s managed there. Ditto Warburton – did great at Championship with Brentford, like Lamps, but at Premiership Rangers he sank completely.
And players who have good experience in the Premier League are what we need. Sure, maybe the very best of the Championship have a place too, but if we want past the green lot, signing a bunch of journeymen from there and below isn’t the way to do it.