The Spoiler’s most obvious summer transfer XI
The 2009 window deals that were absolutely inevitable
As the transfer window creaks shut for once more, Spoiler correspondent Andrew Brook has compiled a team of players who were always destined to change clubs this summer. And look, he’s done it in a 3-5-2 formation! How fun!
GK – Joe Hart
(Manchester City to Birmingham)
As soon as Manchester City signed Shay Given in January, Hart was destined to leave. Every season a promoted team seems to get a new goalkeeper (Scott Carson to West Brom in 2008, Craig Gordon to Sunderland in 2007) so this was an obvious match.
DF – Joleon Lescott
(Everton to Manchester City)
One of this season’s most painfully long sagas saw David Moyes over take Sir Alex Ferguson as the Premier League’s dourest Scot, and thus by extension its dourest person. Just be thankful that this inevitable deal didn’t drag on all the way to deadline day.
DF – Kyle Naughton
(Sheffield United to Tottenham Hotspur)
Even before Sheffield United failed to secure Premier League promotion, everyone knew one of their ranks would be playing in the top flight this season. Harry Redknapp could not remember which of the Blades’ Kyles he wanted, so nabbed Naughton’s teammate Walker as well, but we all knew which one he meant.
DF – Glen Johnson
(Portsmouth to Liverpool)
Portsmouth had no money and Johnson was their best player. Liverpool had no full-backs and Johnson was the best available. As the stand-out player in a bottom-half side, Johnson was always likely to leave, but this was more clear-cut than usual.
MF – Lee Cattermole
(Wigan Athletic to Sunderland)
Sunderland’s midfield had no bite last season, so it was only natural Steve Bruce would adopt the classic “go back to your old club and rob their best player” technique to lure one of the league’s biggest biters back to his native north-east.
MF – Gareth Barry
(Aston Villa to Manchester City)
Barry’s final destination may have been a surprise, but he spent all last summer pining for the Villa Park exit and ‘Champions League football’. He seems to have got a bit lost on his way up the M6, and forgotten his European dream on the journey.
MF – Xabi Alonso
(Liverpool to Real Madrid)
As with Lescott, it does not matter how much the manager doth protest – if the player wants to leave, then he probably will. Rafa Benitez spent last summer trying to sell Alonso, only to fail and see him become one of his best players last season. Alonso got his revenge by engineering a move to Real Madrid, which we all saw coming long before Benitez finally gave up the fight.
MF – Cristiano Ronaldo
(Manchester United to Real Madrid)
Ronaldo to Real Madrid was the transfer story of 2008, and continued to rumble throughout the season. If you did not see this one coming, football probably isn’t the game for you.
MF – Kaka
(AC Milan to Real Madrid)
When AC Milan dangled Kaka in front of Manchester City’s noses and then cruelly snatched him away, it proved the Italians were prepared to sell their most prized asset. As soon as Florentino Perez’s presidency was confirmed, Kaka was on his way to preaching at the Bernabéu.
FW – Peter Crouch
(Portsmouth to Tottenham Hotspur)
Harry Redknapp’s transfer policy since taking over at White Hart Lane has generally consisted of signing players who a) previously played for Tottenham, b) played under Redknapp at Portsmouth or c) are called Wilson Palacios. Despite a flirtation with Sunderland and Fulham, Crouch was a Redknapp signing for Pompey and began his career as a Tottenham trainee, so we all knew where he was going to end up.
FW – Roque Santa Cruz
(Blackburn Rovers to Manchester City)
Mark Hughes hankered after his chum Santa Cruz ever since leaving Blackburn. Unfortunately, soon after getting him, Hughes realised there was a better version available, so promptly signed Emmanuel Adebayor as well, meaning he may have got a very expensive Paraguayan bench-warmer.
Do you agree with Andrew’s choices? Let us knwo your thoughts below…