Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Worst Signings of the Premiership season (part 2)

Part 1, counting down from 25 to 11, can be found here

Right, here's the top ten.  And I'm well aware that you have all long since guessed who is at number one, but how about you humour me and read about the other nine first, huh?

Image result for miles storey aberdeen
It's easy to forget that Storey got into double figures for Caley Thistle last season...especially after his infamous miss against his former club recently.  Storey isn't the sort of centre-forward that Derek McInnes tends to use up front, nor is he accomplished enough on the wing to displace Niall McGinn or Jonny Hayes.  So he's spent most of the season sat on the bench, presumably wondering like the rest of us why the Dons signed him in the first place.

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I suppose this was a low risk, high reward signing, but stepping up from Trinidadian football to the Scottish Premiership was always going to be a bit of an ask for Richard Roy (who, just to add to the stereotype, really did go by the nickname Shaka).  He managed 21 minutes of action in 2 sub appearances, and found himself clean through in the latter, with Accies needing a goal against Kilmarnock.  He shot straight at the keeper, and was never seen again in Hamilton colours.  He was quietly let go in January when his short-term contract expired, and promptly pitched up at Broughty Athletic where he has scored 4 goals in the Juniors.  Perhaps that's more his level?

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For me, the worst of the plethora of January arrivals in Gorgie, though there was plenty of competition.  Avlonitis had been without a club since September but actually started okay, debuting in a thumping of Rangers and following that up with consecutive clean sheets.  It was all downhill from there; Hearts conceded 18 goals in his 7 most recent starts.  Not all of that is down to the Greek, but he doesn't look like he knows how to defend at all.  His biggest achievement has been to make fans at Tynecastle appreciate John Souttar more.

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Tommy Wright thought that the loan signing of his countryman Gormley was a bit of a coup; the striker had missed almost a year with a knee injury at Peterborough but prior to that was a goalscoring machine in Northern Ireland.  This was the man to lighten Steven MacLean's load, surely?  Not so; something was clearly up when he was subbed early in the second half of his debut, and he managed only one further sub appearance.  That something became apparent at the end of October, when he decided to quit football altogether due to being "disillusioned" (according to his parent club).  Having negotiated his release from both his Saints loan and his permanent deal with the Posh, he has reversed his decision and will rejoin old club Cliftonville next season.

Image result for callum mcfadzean kilmarnock
In mid-March Alfreton Town (who play in England's sixth tier, if you're asking) announced the signing of McFadzean, which was a surprise to most folk since Kilmarnock hadn't even mentioned that he'd left.  Mind you, they still haven't confirmed Michael N'goo's departure...When he arrived at Killie, McFadzean was a player who could do a job in defence or midfield, who some English League One experience and was part of Scotland's under-21 squad.  Not bad on paper.  He started a single league game and played one minute of first team football after mid-August, and for him to sign for a new club in March he presumably either left Rugby Park in January or had to join Alfreton on amateur terms.  Either way, it doesn't reflect well on player or club.

Image result for joe garner rangers
I imagine that Garner - or Joe Garner Booked, to give him his full name - scores a 20 for his 'winding the hell up out of everybody within a 20 mile radius' attribute on Football Manager.  Sadly his finishing attribute is nowhere near that.  At this level, a £1.5million striker should be well into double figures and a menace to any defence; Garner has five league goals so far.  He did manage a hat-trick against Accies in the cup, but only after inexplicably avoiding a red card for trying to amputate Dougie Imrie's foot.  If there is a single reason to justify forcing Mark Warburton out of Ibrox, it is probably blowing the entire transfer budget on a guy who wouldn't get a game for most English Championship clubs.  Still, Rangers fans have taken to him, in the same way that they took to the infamous Filip Sebo back in the day.

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Some might say he's too high on this list, given he was a loan signing.  But it's just so disappointing to see such a natural fail to make the most of his abilities; this guy made a Scotland squad at the start of the season, after all.  There have always been concerns about Watt's attitude, but at first he put in a hell of a shift for the Jambos...but it always looked like he was trying to do too much on his own (to be fair, you can't blame him for having no confidence in his strike partner Connor Sammon).  But the performances dropped off a cliff and Ian Cathro quickly discarded him.  What now for Watt, still just 23 and back on Charlton Athletic's bench?

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Boden's move to the Highlands was confirmed so soon after Richie Foran's appointment that one wonders whether it actually had John Hughes' fingerprints all over it.  In an ideal universe, a team who monopolized possession like Yogi's ICT might (note the italics) have been able to take advantage of a fox-in-the-box's skills.  Foran's direct style was no good to Boden, and the forward's inability to hold the ball up made him no use to Foran, who has subsequently signed four other strikers.  Despite making only sub appearances since August, Boden is still there, seeing out the first year of a three year contract.  Who knows, maybe he'll tear up the Championship next season after Caley Thistle are relegated...

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The world and his dog could see a mile off that Senderos would be crocked most of the time and hopeless when he actually played; Rangers had the Swiss on trial for so long before signing him that surely they could see that too?  And yet they signed him on a £12,000/week contract!  And parachuted him straight into an away game at Celtic Park.  His debut will go down in infamy; tortured by Moussa Dembele, he was eventually shown a second yellow card with 15 minutes to go, which to all the world looked like an attempt to remove himself from his personal nightmare.  He has made only three further appearances.  And, in case I forgot to mention it, he's getting twelve grand a week.

Image result for joey barton rangers
Let's face it, Barton is the clearest winner of the award we've ever had.  Rangers' marquee signing last summer on an estimated twenty grand per week, he boasted that he'd breeze through the Scottish Premiership but made only five league appearances, the last of which being the 5-1 thumping at Celtic Park where his lack of mobility was woefully exposed and he then had to spend the last 15 minutes filling in at centre-back.  Within days he'd been suspended after a training ground fight with a teammate, then in October he was charged with betting offences.  After returning to the club he was banished to train with the kids; he got signed off with stress, which Rangers were dopey enough to make public.  By November he had been paid to go away quietly, with rumours that the whole of his two year deal is being paid off.  Still, any publicity is good publicity, eh?