Been off-line for a few days, and come back to find a lovely gem of a news item concerning our forgotten Russian striker, Roman Pavlyuchenko. Apparently Zenit are interested.
"He does not intend to sit on the bench. We are aware of Zenit's interest. They wanted to sign Roman in the summer and I think we'll start negotiations again." - so says his esteemed agent Oleg Artemov.
If it's not meant to be it's not meant to be. He's struggled with an injury or two this season and has generally been a non-entity in our progress, other than a cameo in the Carling Cup. He looked bright and alive in pre-season and I for one was more than curious to see if this much maligned non-English speaking international was not yet another over-rated big money signing.
We remember last year well. He looked out of sorts. Whether it was the general struggle of learning the language (can anyone confirm if he can?) or looking confused when confronted by a Spurs fan in the Waltham Abbey Tescos partnered by his interpretor - Pav looked equally lost on the field too.
A bit clumsy, poor first touch, slow and very Zamoraish with his shooting. Other occasions he displayed a touch of class.
"He's just a bit tired, innit. Long Russian season, European Championships, then a move to Blightly"...was a common excuse by those who awaited the real deal to show us £14M worth of class.
We are still no closer to knowing.
And with JD, Crouchie and the undroppable Keano he stands little chance at the minute of making some kind of breakthrough into the first team.
Nailed on departure, no?
And having Zenit sniffing around is tinged with some of that ever so lickable irony dust. Oh yes. The same Zenit who moved the goal-posts around a dozen times during the Arshavin negotiations. How much did they want from us at the time? £18M? £20M? It was something ridiculous. Every time we seemed to agree a fee, they wanted a bit more. At the time our chairman got some stick from some quarters (cough) for not meeting their estmiation.
"Pay it. He's proper class"
Yes, he is a class player. Someone that would have fit in perfectly at Spurs. Imagine him linking up with Modric and...oh, whatever. It never happened, and to be fair AA is a bit of a git, as you might recall, he's 'dream move' seemed to change every other week. And he's already complaining about the 50% tax deductions that are not too far off for our footballing millionaires. But considering we paid £14M for Pav and £16M for Bentley...it makes you wonder. However, principles are principles, which is why Levy didn't buckle. Sickening he was sold for a measly £12M in the end.
So, back to that irony dust.
Zenit, if they do knock on our door, should be taken to the cleaners. IMO.
They want Pav?
£18M. Not a penny less. Ta.