Rams Cloth Cut For Success

With the transfer window now fully open for business, as they did a year ago, the Rams have been quick to dampen any hopes of big signings.

“Getting a few out is priority”, “only if it’s a significant improvement on what we have” and “we’ll react in the loan window if we have to” are phrases most fans of DCFC are now well used to hearing in the month of January.  However this year, there doesn’t seem to be half as much reaction to the statements as usual.

Whilst I fully accept that whilst the team is winning, fans generally don’t worry about anything else, I also believe that there is now a general recognition amongst even the harshest GSE/Clough critic, that our model is a good one and we are on the right lines.

Over the last two years, Rams fans have endured various relegation battles whilst working through harsh austerity measures. To compound matters, we’ve also had to endure our two most local rivals enjoy several full on promotion tilts whilst regularly signing players for big fees and/or wages.  To rub our faces in the dogshit, we’ve also been spanked by them both on several occasions.

Tom bags the real thing whilst Leicester burn £4.5m on a poor mans version.

But what happens when you “invest heavily in the playing staff”, “have a go” or “show some ambition”? Perhaps a Newcastle have a bit more money than you;  maybe your new players don’t quite gel;  or perhaps you quite simply backed a twat of a manager. Well you have to chase the money you’ve lost with yet more money, you get relegated or you go into administration.

Last year Forest lost £10m, the year before they lost £11m. Last week they sold 10,000 tickets to their own fans for a Cup game against local rivals. Up until Friday night Leicester had actually sold more tickets. Their wage bill remains higher than their turnover.

If you think Nigel wasted £250k on Dave Martin, imagine what Cottrell feels like with Miller, Greening and Derbyshire. The latter two worthless, all with full contracts to run and (I would imagine) none of them on less than £15k per week as a conservative estimate.

Now let’s look at Leicester. Slightly different in terms of having significant (soulless anybody?) foreign investment, but throwing money around like water. In reality is Jermaine Beckford (£3m, 5 figure salary) more effective than Theo at this level? Is Matt Mills £3.5m better than Shacks? Is Konchesky £15k plus a week better than Robbo? The answer to all of this is No. Let’s hope their owners run out of money or get bored soon.

When teams get promoted to the Premier league you constantly hear people talk about “surviving first, then let’s build something”. Likewise when teams come down its very much promotion first time or meltdown. The current structure of DCFC means we will never fall into this category.

So whilst I’d love us to sign Billy Sharp (why do Rams fans have a thing abut him?), I’d love Greeny to stay and I’d love to see a loan from one of the big 4 premier league teams, I also see we’re in a great position now for sustainable improvement over a significant period of time.

Don’t believe the hype. The only way is up.


Posted on January 10, 2012, in General Rams Comment and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Some good points. We do need to consolidate some positions, particularly another player to compliment Ward on the other wing and definitely a better left back.

    In terms of loans I’d like to see us get a young player such as Andros Townsend now at Leeds from Spurs. I’ve always liked how Leon Osman flourished with us and became a staple in the Everton team.

  2. Great article…. yes we’ve had it tough over the last few years.. but hopefully a sustainable future.. we’re all in this together !! 😉

  3. Although I am firmly in the Clough/GSE camp, without ambition and success we will eventually lose players like Ward and Brayford, green is already halfway out the door, in a few years time OB, Ball and Hendrick will want to play for a club that are seriously challenging for promotion or they will also be gone. You can only tread water for so long, eventually you have to learn to swim!

  4. Good article. It’s been a difficult few seasons to say the least as the club took evasive action (cutting its budget) & results suffered. I think the Academy graduates this season illustrate the direction the club is now going (a sustainable future).

    I think Derby can still progress by building a core/nucleus of home-grown players and occasionally losing/sacrificing a promising youngster perhaps to fund signings across the team. It’s about getting a fine balance.

    I think the club could benefit from steady progression, allowing a core group to mature and we’re seeing how the likes of James Bailey have benefited from a year’s experience in the Championship. Similarly Jeff Hendrick.

    I think Clough has made us a more resilient side; in the absence of money, the emphasis has been on energy (Bryson) than on quality, though the emergence of the youngsters like Ball has been a real bonus.

    We could do with a clinical finisher, but that costs (e.g. Sharp). Again, Callum Ball as a Steve Howard type forward has been a bonus and Robinson has probably exceeded expectations, but we still lack a talismanic forward – maybe with more experience, Ball can fill this role.

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