Christian Benteke

In most of the tabloids and sports channels the transfer window has been hailed as a massive success for Crystal Palace but I disagree. I think the transfer window should be classed as a failure!

According to the official Crystal Palace website (click here) these are all the ins and outs this transfer window:

First-team ins:

Christian Benteke (£27 million)
Andros Townsend (£13 million)
James Tomkins (£10 million)
Steve Mandanda (£1.5 million)

First-team outs:

Yannick Bolasie (£25 million)
Dwight Gayle (£10 million)
Mile Jedinak (£4 million)
Alex McCarthy (£3 million)
Jake Gray (free)
Jerome Binnom-Williams (free)

Emmanuel Adebyaor (released)
Marouane Chamakh (released)
Adrian Mariappa (released)
Paddy McCarthy (released)
Chris Kettings (released)

First-team loans in:

Loic Remy (Chelsea, season)

 

First-team loans out:

Freddie Ladapo
Luke Croll
Jonny Williams
Hiram Boateng
Sullay Kaikai
Ryan Inniss
Keshi Anderson

 Total: £51.5 million Total: £42 million

(* transfer fees are official listed as ‘undisclosed’ so I used the fee commonly quoted in the press. Also I have only listed initial fees not potential add ons.)

In my opinion, when you look at the transfer dealings in black and white rather than with nice pictures or a load of headline stats, it looks rather poor!

Nobody could argue that the likes of Benteke and Townsend are quality additions to the squad. They are upgrades for Gayle and Bolasie but the trouble is this; we have replaced our best players in those positions with better ones and not the weaker players.

In my opinions the squad has not improved man for man. Only the first 11 has improved and the rest of the squad will be the same problem that it was last season, we just don’t have good depth.

Had we bought Benteke and sold Campbell or bought Townsend and sold Sako, we could all rejoice that the squad had become better, become stronger! But swapping out our best players for better ones while not addressing the overall squad quality is a major fail in my book and was, or should have been, our top priority!

Add to this that we don’t even have 25 senior players in which to name a 25 man squad makes us a laughing stock. This is because we only have 23 players classified as over 21 and that makes this transfer window even more of a failure!

How could we let players go without ensuring we have replacements lined up? We my not have had great depth in talent last season but at least we had 25 players with a depth of experience!

Maybe I am being a little harsh on the hierarchy at Selhurst Park? After all, maybe we just couldn’t sign some of our targets?

In that case why did we let Jonathan Williams go out on loan to Ipswich for the 50th time? Why could we not give Hiram Boateng some minutes in Premier League action to help him progress? Hell, even if it is only the League Cup games it would take the pressure off the senior players.

Now here’s the really revolutionary idea, why did we not keep Mile Jedinak? Again we have sold players before ensuring that we have players lined up to replace them and as we all know, while Mile was not the best midfielder in the world is a leader and also better than no player at all!

It might not have been so bad if we had we a pool of under 21 talent we could fill the bench with and rely on if needed but the only ones near good enough have been loaned out.

They myth that our academy is a production line has been exposed as a failure. Since 2011 who have we produced that has made it? But that is a subject for another day.

At the time of writing James McArthur and Yohan Cabaye have withdrawn from their international squads because of ‘minor’ injuries. This could leave us up shit creek without a paddle! We’d have to rely on Joe Ledley and, most likely, Jason Puncheon in midfield. Puncheon is a winger converted to a ‘number 10’ and not a midfielder.

In my opinion failing to deal with depth and over all quality of the squad is criminal, failing to ensure we have 25 players in our squad in sheer and utter incompetence which is unforgivable.

I still back Parish and I still back Pardew until November when I will review my opinion but I wonder this. Why was Parish in New York during the last few days? He watched the Bournemouth game with Palace fans in the Big Apple when surely his place was in London trying to get deals done?

In my opinion, loan signings are vanity, permanent signings are sanity! Be prepared for a long, hard, difficult autumn. We failed in this transfer window and don’t let the headlines fool you in to thinking otherwise!

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