Sabastien Bassong to Spurs. Medical passed. Only a matter of time. £8M for a relegated defender. Look away now if stats scare you. Newcastle were better off without him in the side as they lost more and conceded more when he played. Add to it his record at Metz before signing for the Toon (22 games, Metz lost 14, drew 7and won 1 – two of those draws were achieve whilst Bassong went off injured due to injury). But we all know stats are misleading. Look at Darren Bent, great scoring ratio, but you won’t find a player more maligned. Bassong stood out in a very poor team, that mostly failed to match his determination. But at the same time, an inanimate carbon rod would have looked good playing for Newcastle last season.
We need a centre-back desperately. Woody is going to be out for a fair bit of time and Daws won’t be available for several weeks. However Bassong will miss the opening game of the season due to a red card offence from last term, so let’s pray King is fit for the big kick-off. Not sure where he fits in once everyone is fit and able to play. He must have been given some assurances over selection, so will be interesting to see what we do with Dawson once he’s available. May well be the case that Woody is out long term and with King’s troubles, there will be plenty of games available for the three of them to get along just fine.
Still, £8M? Wondering how good a prospect Beevers is at Sheffield Wednesday – who wouldn’t cost too much in comparison. Bassong may well prove to be a great signing for us. The stats I quoted above (and the ones SSN are displaying every half and hour) can be ignored. We all know that if you are a decent player surrounded by utter shit, you’re bound to suffer a little, mainly because your team-mates are not on the same level and can't offer support, so you end up having to do more than you should be doing.
£15M Rod bid rejected
We’ve had some defenders here at Spurs go through the same type of thing. King survived it. Gardner didn’t. Still, as discussed several times on this blog and currently cited in one or two message board threads – why does our scouting system not pick up players that would cost a fraction of the £8M? There must be plenty of undiscovered talents out there. We seem to do well picking up academy players and youth players – but when we want to fill a gap in the first team squad, we always go for the obvious.
Still, welcome to the Lane Sabastien. Good luck lad.
Darren’s a Sunderland player now and he looks rather happy, and as expect he fired a very subtle dig at Spurs (I’ve seen his interview and he isn’t resentful in an obvious way and good luck to him). His dig concerned what goes on behind closed doors:
'There is a lot of politics at Tottenham, but that's Tottenham as a club’
Basically, Bent never believed he would start the next game even if he scored in the previous one. My guess? Probably has to do with Robbie ‘undroppable’ Keane. Rumours of the Irish windmill having a little clause in his contract. I'm sure this myth will be dis-spelled cometh the new season. Unless that's the reason Robbie isn't too happy at the moment. I'll stop now before I drown myself in ITK whispers.
Talkng of which, a lovely piece of ITK information for you, this concerning Pascal Chimbonda (from rocknroll11 over at GG.co.uk):
Just wanted to put to bed all the random theories that are going round as to why we resigned Chimbo and what a pointless signing it is...
Sunderland never ever paid a penny for Chimbo, they were scheduled to pay after the first season. 6 months in he's obviously unhappy, missing the team bus, pissing off Keane etc... and 6 months in Harry's here thinking we lack a bit of steel and have a very small squad. Levy suggested we could get back Chimbo for nothing... so we went to Sunderland and said if you give him back we'll cancel the outstanding payment you own...
and that's what happened.
Lack of a bit of steel? Really? Still, it’s almost believable, although if true – I’m not sure anyone would have made any money out of the ‘transfer’ back to Spurs which is hard to believe considering the people involved.
And finally, the dream is over. Klass-Jan Huntelaar is off to AC Milan. Negredo is being linked with a move to Roma. Then again, so is Pav. And it’s all gone quiet on Sissoko. Perhaps having aided Madrid in creating interest for Huntelaar, they’re let us talk to a couple of their players.
Madhamadou Diarra anyone? Gosh, I’m dreaming again.
For the record, he’s not on Madrid’s transfer list. Neither is Gago (who some of you don't rate) but he's a far more likely target if we do plan to look that way.
We could still do with a midfielder. Don't think we're quite finished yet.