Well, who is surprised that Roly just pocketed around £12m, around £8m of it up front and allowed Karl Robinson to bring in three loan players and Jake Forster-Caskey and Lewis Page on nominal fees during the January transfer window?
The club also moved off it’s wage bill Nicky Ajose, although not in it’s entirety and those of Kevin Foley. Ajose is another classic example of how many players the club has churned since the arrival of Roland Duchatelet. El-Hadji Ba and Oliver Muldoon were also released, Ba having is contract paid up until the summer of 2018.
Ba signed by Meire during the summer of 2015 with great fanfare. Four managers and a caretaker later, he refused to play and we had to pay him off. It is a wonder how Duchatelet has ever made any money in business, it really is.
I think overall the window was mixed. Lookman was always going to leave and the lad goes with my best wishes and I hope he becomes a superstar. Fox has been adequately replaced and he needed a move. I like Chicksen although Page has not had a glittering start to his Charlton career.
Foley is probably no loss in the scheme of things, and the return of Tony Watt sends a shiver down the spine but sadly we all expect that shiver to turn into man flu.
Forster Caskey is a player we have been crying out for and he starred at Bolton. Nathan Byrne looks exciting but is only on loan and the two young loan players DeSilva and Mavididi (photo) are unknown quantities plain and simple but these two ‘starlet’ youngsters have forced Hanlan and Umerah out on loan to Bromley and Kilmarnock respectively.
With Botaka returning from Afcon we now have 6 loans, and one can’t feature in the match day squad. Possibly Ulvestad, who almost stealthy has fallen out of favour.
Robinson has wheeled and dealed but clearly the entourage that went to see Duchatelet in Belgium failed in it’s mission. The marquee signing never showed up nor did another centre half or his much talked about no. 10.
On the plus side Duchatelet could have easily forced someone like Konsa on the open market, and Tex is still with us as is Rudd, rumoured to be heading either back to Norwich or somewhere else. Roger Johnson was heading to Gillingham on loan but mysteriously got injured. The deal he cut with Katrien Meire is one of her most abominable.
What we are left with is a familiar hotch potch of a squad. Loans, kids, injuries, some very good talent but still meaning that the latest manager will have to put square pegs in round holes and the squad still lacks depth.
The biggest concern, again, is that it also lacks longevity. Fast forward to the summer and 6 players will go back to their parent club’s from loan deals, Crofts, Jacko, Chicksen and Johnson will be out of contract and we will need to fight of suitors for at least Konsa, Aribo, Magennis, Tex and Bauer and who knows what state of mind Watt will be in. More churning than a Devon creamery, including possibly the manager and his large staff.
A mixed January at best.