Lord Stevens latest bung report has revealed 17 transfers that he believes require further investigation for corrupt or improper conduct.
But here are 6 deals that should be investigated on grounds of common sense. Not to imply any wrongdoing in these transfers, just that they weren’t a good idea.
Sergei Rebrov was a Premiership flop, but at least when Tottenham signed Shevchenko’s little buddy for about 11 million it seemed to make sense. These, however, will go down in Premiership lore as a big “oops!”.
There are far too many to list, so if you have any idiotic transfers of your own to nominate, let us know.
Lomana Tresor LuaLua, Newcastle to Portsmouth on loan
When then Newcastle boss Bobby Robson originally sent Lua-Lua on a South coast holiday to Portsmouth , he forgot to prevent LuaLua from facing the Toon three games later. Inevitably, LuaLua scored an 89th minute equaliser for Pompey and Sir Bobby looked a bit silly.
Tomas Brolin, Parma to Leeds, Â£4.5 million
In 1994 a brilliant Brolin made the
Cup All Star Team after propelling Sweden to the semi-finals. But soon after he suffered a nasty injury and started eating various forms of wildlife. No one at Leeds United seemed to hear about that last bit though, so they paid 4.5 million to bring him to England in 1995. A tubby Brolin arrived and never even came close to looking like a footballer again.
Jonathan Woodgate, Newcastle United to Real Madrid, Â£13.4 million
No doubt Woodgate is the dogs danglies central defending wise. But only when he’s fit. Which isn’t very often. For some reason Real Madrid didn’t care, splashing out a sizeable 13.4 million for Woody even though he was injured at the time, and most of the time afterwards. The only way this transfer makes sense is if signing injured Englishmen counted towards some sort of tax write off.
Tevescherano, Corinthians to West Ham, undisclosed incredibly dodgy fee
When did this all go wrong? Maybe Alan 1.0 wanted to slowly introduce Tevez and Mascherano into his team or maybe he just didn’t want them there in the first place. Now Alan 2.0 doesn’t seem keen to play the Argentines either. Never before has a Premiership transfer raised expectations so high only to disappoint so badly and it’s easy to argue that the odd nature of the deal is to blame, because it brought with it a lack of clarity. Did Pardew want them? Do West Ham actually own the players? How much did they pay for them? Will FIFA regulations prevent them from leaving in January? What is up with Tevez’ face?
Ali Dia, obscurity to Southampton to obscurity
Dia had been rejected by the likes of Port Vale, Gillingham and Bournemouth after unsuccessful trials, but he still fancied playing in the Premiership. So his agent put in a call to gullible old Graeme Souness at Southampton, pretending to be George Weah and telling Souness that Dia was his cousin and had played 13 times for Senegal.
Souness fell for it and gave Dia a one month professional contract. The cheeky so and so subbed in after 32 minutes against Leeds in 1996, and was so spectacularly crap that Souness dragged him off again 53 minutes later.
There are two reasons this is terrible. First, being someone’s cousin should never be enough to earn you a professional contract. Second, maybe Souness should have taken a look at Dia in training before unleashing him on the Premiership. How either of these were overlooked is beyond any non-Souness human.
Manuel Fernandes, Benfica to Portsmouth on loan
Harry Redknapp recently revealed that the loan deal bringing Fernandes from Benfica to Portsmouth stipulates that if the Portuguese midfielder makes three consecutive starts then Harry has to buy him. For Â£12 million. Because that makes a lot of sense.
[Update 1: Obviously, Marco Boogers needs to be on here somewhere]