Ramspace bits and bobs

With the international break with us and the transfer window closed, here are a few bits and pieces that we’ve been talking about.

Talking points so far…

 The “break-even” transfer policy for the summer may have been a red herring

Despite all the “undisclosed” fees, The Rams summer spending massively outstripped our income by any calculation. Even low-key signings such as Freeman, Gjokaj, O’Connor and Jacobs involved fees added together would be a significant figure in this climate.

The “break even” policy was hinted at early in the summer and mentioned constantly by the fans since – but less and less so by the club as time went on. Did something change or was the sensible policy simply increasing the assets on the pitch? (e.g. Shackell will be nearly 30 this time next year with his resale value decreasing rapidly. Keogh will have just turned 27 and all being well will still be on the up). With Hughes, Bennett, Brayford, Keogh, Hendrick, Fielding (I could go on) on the pitch, the owners are unlikely to be worried (contrast to having Clod, Carroll, Albrechtsen, Pearo etc on long contracts with no resale value).

Should we be worried about Forest?

Everything about Forest’s transfer policy goes against the sensible running of a club. Signing spare parts from the Premier League who aren’t likely to improve is financial suicide (see Jagger’s transfer policy). Their wage bill will be as high as ever, requiring the ongoing £10m a year subsidy but one thing could get them out of jail…if they get promoted. There is no doubt that signing Billy Sharp could be a game-changer for them and it looks like SOD has assembled a decent Championship side (most of who, including Sharp, have already been deemed not up to Premier League standard).

They won’t be world beaters but might end up in the mix. Let’s hope they don’t.

Crowds are down

The opening day crowd had approximately 21,000 Rams fans, around 10,000 Rams down on opening day crowds versus Peterborough and Doncaster in recent years. Worrying by any standards. However, crowds seem down across the board and we still compare well with other “big” clubs in the division judging by Saturdays crowds (Birmingham 14,929, Hull 15,304, higher than the other two East Mids clubs).

Football is more and more of a luxury these days, so its not surprising crowds have fallen during the recession. However, it is disappointing to hear an alarming number of people giving up season tickets or stopping going due to disillusionment at the club. An analogy I recently made was that supporting the club was like being in a bad relationship for some people. The attachment is there but they do nothing but moan, pick faults and criticise. Even worse, they are unlikely to fall back in love any time soon with so much resentment.

Well, they can sit at home and whinge along with Roger Davies, whilst the rest of us watch us put five past Watford.

Clough is not to be messed with

Some of you may recall the Jackal who featured frequently in the Journals and Bad Worse Worst, often with a witty or sharp comment. On Saturday, he more than met his match with Nigel and an out-of-form Jackal was put to the sword. The conversation went something like this (Jackals words):

As he signed my programme picked up off the bar at JJB:

J – sign your name over the front of Conor Sammon please, he’s no looker is he?

N – I didn’t sign him for his looks

J – He played well, came on a ton from last week

N – He played well last week too.

J – (Gulp)…thanks…

You’d be forgiven for thinking the Jackal’s misguided banter got what it deserved!


Posted on September 3, 2012, in General Rams Comment and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Nigel seems to have had it all his own way so good ‘on you board or was it glicks swan song of remember me this way.Kind and generous.So,we sit back and enjoy it .We did on saturday and look forward to the future.Our gates are deteriating but so are everybodies.Come on you rams.

    • We are flying under the radar. No really big signings but thats not a bad thing. I’m worried that Jacobs may be the next David Martin a part from that I couldn’t complain about anything at the Watford game. Barker contract extention makes me wonder as well if i’m honest but i have faith that Cloughie knows what he is doing as i think we are equipped to deal with injuries now and we havn’t been in the past. Up the Rams!

  2. I believe Clough should be applauded for his transfer dealings, young gems that will be of value either to the team or financially in the future, those that are borderline get shipped out on loan to come back better players or to be shown the door. Crowds have been affected by poor club policy, depressingly we have had FFP thrown at us for the last 2 years by Glick everytime he opened his mouth whilst the major clubs in the division and some smaller ones have been spending, everyone could see we were being left behind, the new ticket pricing system appears to be confusing as >12000 empty seats on Saturday shows little demand yet still prices are high if you want to turn up at the last minute, in my view this has contributed to lower attendances although not the sole cause.

    • Yes, I’m still waiting for the “demand based pricing” to take effect. Charlton will be interesting. Despite saturdays win, I’d expect demand to be quite low and its listed as a “£7” game on the season ticket breakdown. Lots of scope for price reductions, yet the “offer of the week” for the Charlton game was decent seats for £24 – hardly a price to tempt those wavering.

      • Jonathan Rodgers

        Interesting comments about the “demand based” pricing. This certainly doesn’t seem to be working as promised, appears to be no more than a random “deal of the week” offering a few quid off and certainly discourages the casual fan who might otherwise have turned up on the day.
        I think that this has had a dampening affect on attendances, as well as an unfair perception amongst fans that GSE have not invested as much in the close season as they should have.
        Interestingly, Watford are speculating about giving fans a pay as you go type “fan card” that will allow them to turn up on the day, bypass the ticket office and access a block of unreserved seating. Simple, quite the opposite of what we are doing and might just work.

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