The Snakes of the Transfer Desert

Opinion

In football players come to football club and players leave football clubs. It’s the circle of life in the footballing world. You can accept players want to play at the highest level for the highest wage. However, I always believe the manner in which a player leaves speaks volumes.

Transfer requests have been at large this month, from Dimitri Payet, which is ironically pretty basic to understand, as it’s understandable to take a wage cut in order to escape West Ham, to Yanic Wildschut, who claimed his move from Wigan to Norwich, is “a step up to me”, despite Wigan and Norwich being in the same division.

The Yanic Wildschut case is especially interesting for me, being a Wigan fan. Wildschut was idolised by the fans during his 12-month spell at the club, in which Wigan basically saved his career and made him the player he is. I understand and respect that Norwich have a chance of promotion and every player dreams of playing in the Premier League, but there is a way to leave. David Sharpe, the Wigan chairman, felt was disrespectful but Sharpe has since tweeted to wish Yanic the best. At the end of the day, £7.5M was too good to turn down for a player we signed for around £1M last season.

Payet is the highest profile example. He had the world at his feet at West Ham and people thought the world of him, but he personally ruined his own reputation by leaving on bad terms. Payet handed in a transfer request, refused to play, and was forced to train with the Under 23’s. Payet’s paddy got him his return move to Marseille, but how much hassle would he have saved if he had just asked politely to return home, and stayed professional in the situation?

Payet could have possibly even resolved the issue of asking for a loan deal until the end of the season to sort his head out. Now I don’t think he will ever return to the Irons as he’s burnt the bridges to the club. From the fans burning his shirts, to Jack Sullivan’s snake tweet, Dimitri Payet isn’t the fans favourite at West Ham anymore, and the reason for that is pretty easy to understand.

A snake was also located in the Bristol area. This transfer caused multiple raised eyebrows. This one was always going to be a controversial move. Matty Taylor has been a consistent goal scorer for Bristol Rovers over the last few seasons and recently signed a new contract. However, Bristol Rovers’ fierce rivals Bristol City broke Matty Taylor’s 300k release clause and signed the striker. This sent shockwaves across the Bristolian football world. Matty Taylor is a very brave lad for joining his former club’s bitter rivals as the dislike of the Bristol club’s upon each other is severe.

I can only imagine the heartbreak of Bristol Rovers’ fans. Dean Saunders, in a rare moment of talking sense, said it’s not only like losing a long term girlfriend, it is similar to losing a long term girlfriend who decides to get with your best mate.

The funniest thing I’ve found with the Matty Taylor story, is the way Bristol City announced him. Bristol City used a graphic on Twitter with the hashtags #WelcomeToBristol and #MakingBristolProud. I just find it so humorous, as I’m getting an interpretation that Bristol City are claiming that you can finally make Bristol proud, by playing for City rather than the Rovers. Bristol Rovers fans are claiming Matty Taylor is a snake, especially given how just 6 months ago Taylor signed a contract extension and stated he felt the loyalty from the club.

Snakes have been a regular spotting in the January window, but who has been the biggest snake? For me, it has to be Taylor. I mean, at least Payet wanted to go home.