Pearce On Transfers

West Ham's chief scout Ted Pearce says that the search for new talent is both a short term and long term operation.
He stresses that Glenn Roeder, while obviously looking at players for the near future, is also looking at the bigger picture as he shapes his transfer strategy.
Glenn has said this week that he is looking to bring players in soon, but he is also mindful of which potential targets may be available at a later date.
"We flog ourselves to death trying to unearth players that will improve the team; it really is the hardest job in the world.
"Fortunately Glenn knows from last season when he was a coach at the club and undertook scouting work for me, how difficult it is.
"We have worked very well together before and this season is no exception, but we are going to have to be patient.
"To Glenn's credit he could have made half a dozen signings, but the players were not good enough to have improved the team, and Glenn won't be panicked into signing that type of player.
"Glenn knows what he wants and where he wants to go, and if the fans are patient I'm sure he will produce the results as well.
"We are looking to have a dossier of players on the table at the end of the season for the manager to scrutinise, while doing our best to strengthen the team for the current season's needs."
The name of Andres d'Alessandro has cropped up in connection with Leeds this week; the 20 year old attacking midfielder from River Plate had a trial under Harry Redknapp last season but returned to Argentina.
Glenn, of course, is aware of the player, but Ted says:
"Both Glenn and I feel South America is such a massive cultural change with the climate, the style of football, and everything else.
"Just look at how many South American players have excelled in the Premiership - there aren't too many.
"I know Manchester United paid a lot of money for Veron but of course he hasn't come straight out of South America.
"He is a top international player who had played in Italy for several seasons and is already proven.
"But the type of player we could afford from there would be a risk - not that there wouldn't be an exception to the rule.
"But on a general point we believe it would be a big risk."
And is it less and less likely that a good player could be found in the lower leagues?
"My answer to that in simple terms would be 'yes' - there is an enormous gap between the first division and the Premiership," he says.
Jermaine Jenas of Nottingham Forest is the youngster from that division most being talked about at the moment, but Ted says:
"There are one or two younger players that, in the course of time, I believe will be Premiership players.
"But with West Ham United we have a limited amount of money and if the manager is going to spend £2m or £3m then that player must be ready made material to play in West Ham's first team.
"These younger players that I can think of would cost that sort of money but would almost certainly not be ready made material for West Ham's first team today.
"Then you come to the overseas market which is probably more attractive because players don't seem so highly priced - but then you have the cultural changes.
"You don't know whether the style of play they have in, say, Portugal means players from there will find it easy to excel in this country.
"All of these things have to be taken on board and it is extremely difficult; the cultural change can be enormous.
"That is why I think a number of Scandinavian players have done extremely well in this country for the likes of Manchester United, Arsenal, and Chelsea.
"The same applies to French players as well, but if you go slightly further afield it is a different story.
"With the African players, apart from the cultural changes, they have so many competitions they are involved in, and can be away for weeks and weeks of the season."
Competition for players is fierce and Ted adds:
"Arsene Wenger is on record as saying, I think, he 'had scoured the world' for replacements for Tony Adams and Martin Keown - and couldn't find them.
"It was no stroke of scouting genius that unearthed Sol Campbell, it was just luck and a commitment to a huge salary.
"So it is difficult even for the top clubs, but we will certainly unearth a couple, with the continuation of the hard work and making lots of enquiries.
"I'm sure that the players Glenn has signed and will sign will be big assets to the Hammers."