Between the lines

Avram has been talking as our new manager for the first times.

The latest official statements of our newly appointed manager is in line with every new manager in any team. “Happy to be here”, “relishing the challenge”, it’s a great club” etc. etc.

My favorite platitude is, however, “we want to improve”, which is a reasonable goal for a team avoiding relegation by a hairs breadth.

There are however some grains of information that may be extracted from these interviews and other official produce.
The way he talks about the squad tells us that he by no means takes for granted that there will be any significant additions to it. “If most of the players will make progress we will not need many players” is a statement meant to prepare us for the possible scenario that Hitzlsperger will be the only signing of a “proven” player this window. Or to use Grantish “someone who can play football”.
Late info/rumors points toward Barros adding his £ 5 million worth of talent to our attack but even if these rumors are wrong I guess a signing involving that kind of money may well be in the cards. As far as I can judge he can play football. With him in our books one wonders if Diamanti still will be needed? Also, Gollivan needs to show that they weren’t sh*ting us when they suggested adding additional additions. Also, one or two of the usual suspects will most likely be leaving, more than making up for the money Barros will set us back.

Grant is unusually frank about the necessity to keep Parker. On the OS he says “I can tell you that Scott Parker is important to us . He is a good football player and has quality”. While he is less optimistic about keeping Upson “We will see him when he comes back. Of course we want Matty Upson to stay at the club”.

England’s lack of success in the World Cup, and the un-applauded individual performances obviously boosted our chances to see our England internationals in claret and blue even in the upcoming season. Whether we want them to or not. I (and a few agents) was hoping for huge positive exposure for Green and Upson so we could mourn their leaving while banking some serious money. If nothing else to be able to keep Parker and Cole. On the international note, I’m sure that Parker would have been lost to us had he been given a chance to show what work rate and moral can do, also on the international scene.

Other secret messages were extractable from the release of the new away kit. Cole, Noble, Stanislas and Hitz were used as fashion plates. The odds on Stanislas, Noble and Hitzlsperger to play for us during the 10/11 campaign are pretty low, but what raised my spirits was that Cole would do a photo shoot dressed in it. I thought he would be reluctant, not only because he was afraid that those hoops that seems to have slid down from the chest to get stuck around the waist would make him look short and chubby (is this why Benni wasn’t asked?), but also because he figured he wouldn't be using it much this season. It kind of tells us that he is not in the middle of wrapping up a transfer. But then he looks a bit depressed doesn’t he? Maybe the transfer talks are not as many and as fruitful as he was hoping? But then Noble and Junior doesn’t really look too excited either in the pics on the online store. It’s all a party though when they realize that they will be offered a free high fat meal! (just go and look at the pics on the OS site if none of this makes any sense to you).

Anyone noted that Avram has been seeing a PR consultant? A bit like Tony Soprano seeing a shrink. Either that or a plastic surgeon. He is smiling like his jaws are unhinged on every picture! A smart move just the same as his trade mark sulky face seem to be the major problem people have with him.

Btw, the name of the post was chosen to lure the writer of THIS blog out of hiding.

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