Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Not a Great Deal for Cats Fans to Get Excited about; NO SIGN YET OF THE NEW FACES NEEDED

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Not a Great Deal for Cats Fans to Get Excited about; NO SIGN YET OF THE NEW FACES NEEDED

Article excerpt

Byline: STUART RAYNER Sports writer stuart.rayner@trinitymirror.com @sturayner

SO FAR, so little.

Even Sky Sports would struggle to get excited about the 2017 January transfer window - at least at this stage. It looks like everybody is leaving their shopping until the last possible minute.

The new, obscene television deal is not yet having such a positive impact. Premier League clubs are afraid to sell and, unless they go to China, those wanting out will have to take big pay cuts to move abroad.

Take Jermain Defoe, for example.

Sunderland know selling their topscorer would just about guarantee relegation and that going down would cost them tens of millions of pounds.

No-one in their right mind would pay the amount of money it would therefore cost to lever the 34-yearold out of the Stadium of Light - and neither would a desperate football club owner.

Yet that is what Defoe is worth to the Wearsiders, so that is his price and to hell with his value.

Even the English clubs who do not have such considerations to factor in jack their prices up accordingly.

Whether or not Patrick Bamford leaves Chelsea this month is academic to the Blues' chances of winning this year's Premier League. Chelsea are not one of the three clubs he has played Premier League football for, yet at 23 he has never scored a top-flight goal. Even with a cv like that it is thought he will cost Middlesbrough PS6m.

The result has been stasis. The longer it goes on, the more you appreciate what a wonderful job Sam Allardyce did this time last year.

Twelve months on, without the same lead-in time to the window, the current Crystal Palace manager is complaining - justifiably - about the over-priced English market.

He should know, having paid Leicester City PS12.5m for fringe player Jeffrey Schlupp. …

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