No sooner had I posted yesterday, than the announcement that Sokratis had landed as our brand spanking new defender.
What a day.
The 29-year-old has come in from Dortmund for £16m. He’ll bring leadership, fear, and prison yard bully-boy tactics to the dressing room. He’s so scary, he already has Aubameyang calling him Papa online. Total and utter dominance of other men is quite the skill.
I’d still quite like to see another young centre-back coming in. Someone with a touch more experience than Holding and Chambers. I’m not sure where the deal for Soyoncu has gone, but you’d imagine after the retirement of Per Mertesacker and the horrible injury of Koscielny, it’ll be something that’s top of mind.
I was also mulling over the new deals for Chambers and Xhaka. I know there’s a lot of love in the fanbase for both, but I’ve always been under the impression that they’re lacking in the pace department. Odd deals, but I guess you just have to trust in the new process.
The deal for Torreira has yet to happen, but I guess with Uraguay still firmly in the World Cup, it’ll be at least another week.
Mesut Ozil has finally picked up the number 10 of Jack Wilshere, which means he’s certainly playing an important role next season.
The other deal that’s still on the table is the Aaron Ramsey one. We’re pushing into ‘OH GOD NO PLEEEEASE SIGN DA TING’… you’d have to imagine there’s a deadline on this. No way we can let him head into the last year of his deal. According to rumour, he’s been rejecting deals like bad swipes on Tinder. As I mentioned before, his agent will be pushing for Ozil like money, because why not? He’s the best performer at the club. However, you can see it from the clubs perspective. You can’t level out that sort of money on a player who goes missing with injury… that said, you have Mesut who goes missing in big games and on random holidays when the going gets tough.
At least we know he’ll be floated out the back door if he doesn’t decide to stay on. We’re in a ruthless regime now. Though I do wonder what you do if he says he doesn’t want to leave? Do you threaten him with U23 football all year? That’d be mean. Let’s see where this goes, I don’t like the ‘he’s waiting to see what the squad looks like’ banter.
England is up a bit later this afternoon. We saw Belgium beat Japan after going 2-0 down. A lot of talk of Belgium being frauds, but the boys stepped up in the end and kept the flicker of the golden generation dream World Cup win alive. I love how the internet has rallied against people calling out Lukaku for lacking intelligence. It’s amusing to now watch it go the other way, people clamouring to be the first to congratulate him on intelligently passing the ball 3 yards into space. It was a lovely dummy for the final goal yesterday, but the genius post-rationalization commenatary is a bit much.
I also have to say, regardless of the ‘I need to be offended’ brigade online, the idea that it’s now a bit racist to comment on a player’s physical stature or attributes is next level. Sport, literally the one living in the world where being a genetic freak is exactly what lands you big dollars, is largely down to your power and pace. You think Per Mertesacker is making £90k a week if he’s 5ft5? You think Aaron Ramsey is anywhere near the Premier League without the engine he has?
I appreciate there are levels to this, and it’s certainly nuanced, but I think we lose our damn minds sometimes.
Right, England up in 4 hours, see you in the comments!