Everyone feeling a little better now that deadline day is only accessible by time travel? I'm sure the ones that choose to watch Sky Sports News in the aftermath have braved a pure red assault on their senses, what with one hell of a Liverpool love-in consuming all that dare to leave the remote out of reach. Green-eyed, I've decided to avoid it altogether. I'm still gutted that Jim White's head failed to explode. The window was disappointing in more ways than one.
Quite a bit has been said, in recent guest blogs and in the comments section, so I'm going to avoid another epic waving of arms in the hair, spitting blood and growling at the moon in protest of what looked on the surface (which is what matters because it's the only thing we get to see) to be a massive error of judgement/poor negotiating/ non-existent scouting or perhaps nothing less than a schooling dished out to us for the purpose of deflection/propaganda.
Firstly, Levy. Ignoring all the N17/Stratford agendas and also side-stepping the suggestions that some of our more fanciful bids were superfluous - we did try to sign players. The question marks remain in the manner we want about our business and the almost desperate approach to capture some of La Liga's finest. With the added bonus of Neville and Adam - that still make no sense to me in relation to the time left in window and the fact they appeared to be attempted 'bonus' signings to appease the disappointment of no forward.
All a bit messy, no? Hardly a clear and concise strategic plan. On the surface.
I'm also wondering how much truth sits in with some of those La Liga bids, as there's a suggestion in Spain that Atlético Madrid's president was building up hype to show strength to their supporters that they would not accept bids from anyone. Unless I'm thinking of one of the other clubs subjected to one of our bids. Perhaps off the back of that claim, we went from denying making a bid for Sergio Agüero to 'playing the game' and pretending we actually did. But that's just me reading way too much into it.
The point is, we all know/knew a forward was required because our forwards simply don't score enough and our system requires something a bit special to lead it up top. We tried, not very well, and failed.
But what's done is done. And as if by (dark) magic, we find ourselves now without our talismanic Croatian crafter for a few games thanks to an almost ridiculously timed 'op' that has nothing to do with football (injuries). Kaboul is out. King has been out since forever. Dawson serving a suspension. Huddlestone breaking down. (edit...and Bale...and Pienaar).
Bare bones, backs to wall, two points eight games.
You know, we can all sit here - at home, in the stands, wherever - and complain and bite our nails and generally puff out cloudy negativity like a depressive locomotive smoking sixty cigarettes a day.
Or we can cite last season. Injuries aplenty. Hardly ever starting our 'best eleven'. Disappointing pockets of results that inflicted pain and sorrow and statements as deceive as 'that's it, we wont finish fourth now'.
And yet, we dug deep. We overcome what many though impossible on-paper fixtures. And players, including those that are much maligned, out fought opponents in one superb battle of tenacity after another. Strength as a team, as a unit.
Now last year, we were chasing something we've never got before. So the hunger, the determination - it was specially moulded by each test presented and passed week in week out. This year, this season...the Premier landscape has changed a little and with it, so must we.
Time to forget the past and just look forward with one thing in mind. Belief. Even if we are disgusing that perhaps we don't have the tools in key areas. We've done it before, we can do it again. Even with our limp attack.
I'd take every word Harry shares with this bestest mates in the media with pinch of salt in terms of his complaining about lack of this type of player and lack of that type of player. I'd also just forget about the whole 'we need a forward' thing because as much as a forward would have given us renewed impetus - the fact is, we never signed one.
It's a great testament, for me anyway, that I can look at our team and find myself preferring that the more difficult the task looks, the more comfortable I am with the belief that we can finish in a top four slot. Gone past the half way stage and we've still not quite hit that form. I'm placing a lot on faith, but that's the building block that made last season so epic.
Still wholly dependent on the players recapturing that guile and spirit that saw us victorious last time round. The message is therefore rather simple.
Wakey wakey, cock-a-doodle-doo.