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It’s Good News Week


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Chelsea’s reported interest in Daniel Sturridge, if true, is such good news for so many good reasons it’s difficult to know where to start when praising the approach. Get your checklist out and start ticking… He’s young, he’s English, he plays in a position where we are not, with the notable exception of Franco Di Santo, overburdened with similarly aged talent, he’s keen to come here [allegedly] and he’s established at England Under-21 International level, as well as already being regarded by his present club as potential, if not well used, first team material in the Premiership.

However, it is this last point that is probably the most intriguing of the lot, and the one that provides the warmest glow of satisfaction for Chelsea fans, as it is the first speculative evidence of the sea change about to happen in pursuit of transfer targets and our spending on them in the summer. So, the 19-year-old striker is out of contract and is asking for a new deal that has crept up in value, minute after dubious minute, to something supposedly in the region of £75,000 a week. The media are struggling hard to paint Sturridge and his prospective new club in the usual greedy bar steward light that the player will have to get used to and we’ve come to expect over the years since Roman arrived, but, bearing in mind City’s newfound wealth, this struggle is becoming evermore difficult and even rather comical in its presentation. A few of the latest leaked offerings and actual quotes set the scene rather nicely and Mark Hughes gives us this for starters...

"We want Daniel to stay because he is an outstanding player, but there has to be an understanding from his advisers that there is a level for everybody."

Wise words, Mark, even though you wasted them on the Daily Star, yet you can’t blame us for doubting their sincerity when you and your Abu Dhabi backers have already blown the cover on any sort of ’level for everybody’ in the actual case of Robinho’s worth and the potentially outrageous case emerging from your failed courtship with Kaka. Indeed, if you presumed that a greedy Sturridge, outstanding player though he is, didn’t warrant excessive largesse heading in his direction surely it would have been more honest to admit that City are now operating on a stratospherically different ‘level’ altogether and would therefore be more inclined to satisfy the greed of whopping great big fish in the, shall we say, shallower end of the pool.

No doubt seeing the obvious hypocrisy in his statement, Hughsie quickly followed up his initial statement with an explanatory “Daniel is still making his way in the game†piece of cautious fatherly advice, thus auditioning Chelsea for their usual role of child snatcher, as was the situation with Mikel, although, naturally enough [for the other half of town] nothing like the whole Macheda family kidnap. The Daily Star clearly had their doubts about ethics too, deciding to at least make a token effort on the story’s behalf by revealing an added report in high moral tone which…

“…suggests City are preparing to make a final offer to Sturridge worth between £30,000 and £40,000 a week and Hughes has ruled out paying over the odds to keep the forward.â€

No paying through the nose for this young whippersnapper, then, and quite right too bearing in mind that he brings nothing to the table in terms of…well, anything brand-wise. Why on earth these kids cannot continue to make their way in the game by staying in the shadows while the likes of Robinho make the headlines is beyond the wit of any self respecting ambitious club, isn’t it?

To return to a more serious conclusion, is there really anybody left on the planet who believes in these fabricated and self-positioning stories, or honestly holds the opinion that Sturridge should ‘see sense’ and re-sign for City, thereby securing his future in the [tabloid perceived] Micawberish environment that is Eastlands? I suppose there must be, or the Daily Star would soon go out of business and Mark Hughes would soon be out of a job. Although we were never handled in such kid glove fashion as City are in the early stages of their spend ’em up days and we have hardly covered ourselves in young, home grown talent [that we’ve used] since, I for one am glad that we appear to be starting on the downward spending curve and that the first transaction is likely to involve the club replacing us as the next obscene buyers of a Premiership. Next stop would be for them to take as long to win the title as it’s taking the Scousers and, in complete contrast, for Chelsea to win in the interim with a mixture of home grown youth and loyal, experienced players.

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Great post as always Dorset, and your last paragraph is one that rings truest for me; well, truest in hopes maybe not actuality.

I really hope the silly days of spending, the "one price for Chelsea, one price for anyone else," the use of our club's name by agents trying to hammer out bigger contracts for their players, are all behind us.

It would be nice to still occasionally bring in a big name player, and I feel we will this summer in the guise of an attacking player/winger; however, it would also be nice to start seeing some young talent make their way onto the recently extended substitutes bench. At least that was one thing Scolari was getting right.

It will be an interesting summer, no doubt, and I feel City will spend in proportions that could re-generate the global economy. I also feel that Hughsie will not be the man whom the Abu Dhabi lot trust with their millions. I think Hughes will be shown the door and City's first signing may well be a new manager. Sven to make a triumphant return, anyone?

Let the silly season begin, lets just try and avoid too much sillyness, eh Chelsea?

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