Gale On Transfer Trickery

Tony Gale says it will be a tough task for Glenn Roeder to do the wheeling and dealing required to improve the squad - because it is so difficult to move players on that are not wanted.

Tony agrees with Glenn in saying that first team players, rather than squad ones, need to be brought in, and says:

"Look at the quality Glenn has already signed in David James, Don Hutchison, and Tomas Repka.

"These players are quality and maybe we should have been signing that type of player in the past, going for the quality not the quantity.

"It was forever being said that we needed a great big squad but you need good players.

"Glenn will be looking at which ones he can ship out and which ones he can ship in because he will have to do a bit of wheeling and dealing.

"That is all part of the job, unfortunately; you inherit another manager's players and it isn't until a second season down the line that you can start to be judged on your own performances because you have got your own players in."

Moving players on who earn good money is easier said than done, however, and Tony adds:

"It is a big, big problem, and what you have got now is some players sitting on big fat contracts with two or three years to go, saying 'I'm not moving unless I get the same kind of contract'.

"You can't blame the players for that because they will say 'you thought I was good enough to buy, so you have to pay my contract'.

"It is a difficult situation and all part of the skill of being a manager."

He says there are players who are happy to just sit out their contracts in the reserves, and adds:

"I think sometimes players, particularly in today's climate, lose sight of first team football and don't think of it in footballing terms.

"I think a lot of players now are thinking about it financially, and it is what the climate of the game has brought about itself.

"A lot of today's players are after as much money as they can get, but how long this bubble will stay blown up and whether it is going to fade and die, to coin a phrase, we don't know.

"As long as the players are getting money they seem to be quite happy."

It is something he can't relate to, and he adds:

"I'd have said I'd have loved to have played but I never really had that nice problem!

"Personally, it was the love of the game that I played for, and Billy Bonds has a great phrase for it.

"He says in the commentaries for capital Gold 'I don't envy their wealth, but I envy their youth.'

"He doesn't care about the money but he'd love to be playing, but it is a problem that managers and coaches have to deal with now.

"It really is a difficult situation because unless someone sees something in those players you want to move on you can't sell them."

The alternative to raise funds is to sell good players, and Tony adds:

"We are talking about maybe trying to get £10m for Trevor and that would give Glenn some room for manoeuvre.

"But he would like to keep him in the side; it is a difficult juggling act because you can't sell the players that are not so good because people can't pay the price."

Tony hopes Glenn can find another Tomas Repka and adds:

"He is a quality player and we need that type of player at the club - and I think that is one of the positions he will strengthen in.

"Tomas was silly getting sent off at Blackburn, though; we were in the game and we looked like getting back into it.

"After that we had no hope; he upended him, and I don't think he can have any complaints - it was a deliberate foul."

Now is the time, says Tony, for everyone to pull in the same direction, and he concludes:

"The players, the board, and the crowd must stick together and stick by the manager; I believe in Glenn, and I think others should as well."