2010 January Transfer Roundup

Ah, the obligatory transfer roundup post. Before we begin the beguine though, let’s look back five years and put this window into a bit of perspective.

2006 January Transfer Window IN
GK Tony Warner Cardiff City Undisclosed
MF Simon Elliott Columbus Crew Free
GK Antti Niemi Southampton Undisclosed
MF Michael Brown Sheffield United Undisclosed
DF Wayne Bridge Chelsea Loan
2007 January Transfer Window IN
FW Vincenzo Montella A.S. Roma Loan
MF Clint Dempsey New England Revolution £1.5m
MF Simon Davies Everton Undisclosed
MF Alexey Smertin Dynamo Moscow Free
2008 January Transfer Window IN
DF Brede Hangeland Copenhagen Undisclosed
MF Leon Andreasen Werder Bremen Undisclosed
FW Eddie Johnson Kansas City Wizards Undisclosed
DF Toni Kallio Young Boys Undisclosed
FW Jari Litmanen Malmo Free
DF Paul Stalteri Tottenham Hotspur Loan
2009 January Transfer Window IN
MF Giles Barnes Derby County Loan
MF Olivier Dacourt Inter Milan Loan
MF Julian Gray Coventry City Undisclosed
2010 January Transfer Window IN
FW Stefano Okaka AS Roma loan
DF Nicky Shorey Aston Villa loan
DF Christopher Buchtmann Liverpool Undisclosed
2011 January Transfer Window IN
MF Steve Sidwell Aston Villa Fulham Undisclosed
MF Gaël Kakuta Chelsea Fulham Loan
FW Eidur Gudjohnsen Stoke City Fulham Loan

Chris Coleman deserves many plaudits for addressing momentary failings while also strengthing for the future. Antti Niemi would be a fixture in goal for the next 2 seasons — and probably more had he not severely injured himself. Clint Dempsey is currently the squad’s MVP, and Simon Davies scored a goal in a European final.

Outside of the 2008 January Transfer window, when he had just taken just charge and basically had a summer’s worth of dealings truncated into 31 days, Roy’s dealings made little lasting impact. None of the players signed in January 2009 and 2010 were with the club come May. In 2009, only Dacourt even saw the field. In 2010, Shorey and Okaka, although giving rest to our non-cup tied XI, played in (let’s face it) some pretty meaningless league games.

It’s also probably worth pointing out that some (once) key players have also left Fulham during the January period: notably Luis Boa Morte in 2007 and Jimmy Bullard in 2009.

So what to make of this year’s newbies? Is Hughes taking the Cookie route, or the Roy route of merely looking for squad players?

Steve Sidwell is another defensive center mid that will give Etuhu a bit of competition — according to Colin’s database, Etuhu is number two in Sidwell’s similarity score list. Football365 even put this transfer in their Top 10:

7 – Steve Sidwell (undisc from Aston Villa to Fulham)
Languishing in the reserves at Aston Villa, Sidwell’s career could charitably have been described as ‘stalled.’ He clearly needed to get out, but his move to Fulham turned out to be excellent not just because it got him out of the Villa stiffs, but because he didn’t end up signing for West Ham. Indeed, in pulling out of the deal because the Hammers apparently had too many midfielders (Mediawatch has dealt with their pursuit of other men in that position), Karren Brady did Sidwell a favour. Would you prefer a stable club whose form seems to be turning around, or a basket case at the bottom of the league? Tough call.

Although some say  they see little in Sidwell that Greening cannot do, maybe Sabermetrics could prove otherwise?

Kakuta is a bit of a mystery, considering he’s barely featured for Chelsea after putting them through so much trouble (weep). But even at age 19, he does bring some Champions League experience. Not that I put any stock into that, but it sure sounds official and something a pundit would say. He could be a squad player, but I have a feeling he may see some games.

Gudjohsen is definitely past his prime, but can do some patchwork for us until Bobby is 110% (which I’m betting is in early March). His winning goal against Stoke City last winter helped Spurs be in a position to qualify for the Champions League. The goal against us in the FA Cup effectively ruined all dreams of Wembley. Like Kakuta, Eidur is one to bolster the bench but will be surely called upon when needed.

On the flip side, Fulham saw 5 exits this window. Going out was David Elm, who appeared just once this season, on the bench for opening day, and his Swedish compatriot Fredrik Stoor. Although Stoor at least registered on Soccernet’s transfer tally, he made 9 appearances for a mere 526 minutes in his 2.5 seasons with the club.

Also going out was young gun Robert Milsom left for Aberdeen, which considering the current glut at midfield is no surprise.

Leaving on loan was Keanu Marsh-Brown to MK Dons, and Eddie Johnson to Preston North End. Although many fans will be happy to see the backside of EJ, he may at least play a part in Preston’s survival. I know I’ll be following him with the rebirth of the loaner reports.

Rich wrote last week about what he thought the side needed during this window. Well, we got our center mid and center forward (sorta). And with Senderos (remember him?) yet to make an appearance this season but coming back from injury, that’s essentially a signing right there.

Plus, with the same about to happen Zamora in a month or so, and AJ’s seeming return to form, making it rain for some other striker wasn’t necessary after all.

16 thoughts on “2010 January Transfer Roundup

  1. Gudjohnsen will end up more than just a pathwork player I think. A physically strong player with a good injury history who relies on a world class technique and football brain shouldn’t struggle at age 32. He’s something of a mix between Teddy Sheringham, Mark Hughes and Dennis Bergkamp, players who were playing first-team football for top Premiership clubs into their mid-30s (Hughes and Sheringham continued to play Premisership football for lesser clubs for even longer).

    Gudjohnsen can fill any one of three roles for us: he could lead the line, play in the hole, or even replace Murphy in the middle. And unlike at Stoke, we play the kind of football that should get the best out of him. The question only as I see it is whether — after winning basically everything in club football in England, Spain and Europe — he still has the fire in his belly.

      1. Litmanen was 37 when he joined us, hadn’t played for a year, and had been dealing with constant injuries since he left Ajax almost a decade previously. This signing is in a whole different realm, though as B+W Geezer says there is something fishy about his lack of playing time over the last couple seasons. Nonetheless, Mark Hughes was 32 when he joined Chelsea. Sheringham was 31 when he went to Man U. Both were similar players and were brilliant for those clubs. I like the fact that Gudjohnsen’s paying half of the $20k per week it costs us to bring him in, rejecting a move to Feyenoord. If we just got lucky and he’s still hungry he’s just the kind of player who could take us to a new level.

  2. I think the thing that’s most clear from those past windows is that only time will tell exactly how well we’ve done. I like the three players we’ve brought in. They seem to add strength to the team and with AJ and Dembele starting to look like players again and Zamora not far from a return things are looking rosy again.

    A prudent transfer window to reflect prudent times. At least we’re in tune with the pervading financial climate even if our neighbours choose to rub their riches in everyone’s face.

  3. Three members of the 25 who clearly weren’t up to the standard of this league: out, replaced by two who are known to be and one who is expected to be. As a result, at least 20 of our complement are now of fair to good premier league standard, a position I’m not convinced we’ve ever been in before.

    It’s a bit ominous how little game-time Gudjohnsen has had since Barcelona. There’s no conceivable quality issue, so you do have wonder what else may be afoot. But he’s zero risk, and the potential upside is considerable, so let’s hope that is sufficiently motivating. As suggested in the first reply, there are multiple ways he can slot in, albeit probably only for half a game or less until properly fit — which maybe he never will be. He was clearly way down the the list of targets, so you have to wonder who we missed out on. Whoever: they won’t have been classier in football terms.

    1. We have certainly never gad a squad this good. Nowhere near it. Time was we were filling in gaps in the first team. Then upgrading our poor bench. Now, for the first time I can recall we’ve got genuine first teamers in every bench spot (or at least will do with schwarzer back). Its been slow and gradual but you can’t argue with the results, especially in these times of austerity

      1. A url someone posted somewhere recently is http://www.myfootballfacts.com/Fulham_Squad_Numbers.html. Perusal of that suggests we were well placed in our first prem season, but soon dipped badly beyond the first 13 or so, before the recent climb to unprecedented strength in depth. That’s really taken place during the time of our now longest servers, Clint and Simon. Compare the competitive environment when they arrived and now and see a big difference. This implies its a fair accusation that Coleman was starved of resources and didn’t do badly considering.

        1. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Pay-As-You-Play-Success/dp/0955925339

          is a book I contributed to last year. Paul Tomkins and some clever people have attempted to index transfer spending in the Premiership era, putting all fees into today’s money. I didn’t really agree with the method at first (others have suggested that wages, not transfer fees are the most important, for example) but it’s winning me over.

          Anyway, what it showed (and I’ll do a full post on this) is that Tigana’s initial squad was much more expensive in the terms of the time and that our indexed squad value decined pretty much every year from there.

          I wrote a short piece about Fulham’s transfer dealings for the book and my conclusion was that really we’ve done pretty well. To stay in this league for so long is some achievement, and over the years we do seem to have bought the right players at the right time, more or less.

  4. Blimey, I am shocked how badly Roy did in his January windows, Hangeland and Saltieri being the only real successes. Rose tinted glasses and all that. Very interesting.

    By the way, I thought Sidwell looked like a very good aquisition on Sunday, strong and with vision. You could argue that so far Hughes has only faltered on Salcido and I beleive the lad is suffering from Baird badging from the fans at the moment but will come through to become a very good player for us.

    1. Salcido looks like a left footed Glen Johnson to me. When he settles he’ll be a hell of a player at times, and a head in hands player at other times.

    2. In fairness to Royston, you would have to look at the summer windows also. He did also sign Schwarzer, Pantsil, Konchesky, Duff, Gera, Zamora and Andy Johnson.

      1. Oh I totally agree. But this post wasn’t about each manager’s overall transfers, but just how we should look that this year through the prism of prior windows.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s