Writer: Mike Field
Date:Thursday September 17 2009
Sylvain Distin has said categorically he refused moves to Manchester City and Liverpool because he felt he would be on the bench more than on the pitch...so how do we fit into that?
It's a reasonably safe bet - well as far as safe bets go when discussing rumoured transfers and interest in players - that Martin O'Neill was interested in bringing Distin to the club during the summer.
There were earlier quotes from the manager, although the source escapes me now saying that he wasn't interested in Richard Dunne and it's reasonably accepted that James Collins was partially an 'emergency' replacement for Curtis Davies when it was clear surgery would needed.
Now of course this doesn't explain the transfer of Zat Knight, although it's possible we were in for another defender which fell through OR Monny is confident enough in Ciaran Clark to make the step up when required this season. The latter being borne out by his Fulham debut.
What we do know for sure is somewhere along the lines Monny was let down - by somebody - he believed an agreement was in place albeit possibly a verbal one as he continued to talk about not taking things for granted until they were signed.
As far as beliefs in rumours can go, this change of plan was put down to Distin moving to Everton, leaving us free for Dunne who was also on Everton's radar.
Speaking to 442 yesterday, Distin said clearly that moving to a club where he'd be on the bench more often than not '...was not what you might call in England 'my cup of tea'.
Now although these comments are attributable to moves to Liverpool and Man City, it does make you wonder why Everton and not us, or Sunderland where first team football shouldn't have been an issue.
Was it because Everton losing Lescott allowed him to build a first team term into the contract, or was it because he thought his chances were improved through lack of depth?
I suppose ultimately unless we are confirmed as being in for the player, and he explains we'll never know.
But it does raise the other possibility on our incomings given all the talk of panic buys over Davies etc
Were we always after Dunne (despite Monny's earlier comments - let's face it, what he says to the press always doesn't tally with what he's doing), and Distin, and Collins.
Was this why Knight was let go out of the blue with seemingly no replacement?
If Distin's move was all about regular football, did he see Davies, Cuellar, and Dunne as potentially too much of a risk and that's of course allowing for Collins to be Knight's replacement, which makes more sense of his sale.
Well I found it interesting anyway :-)
Date:Thursday September 17 2009
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