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Beat around the Bush

PUBLISHED: 13:47 03 February 2010 | UPDATED: 14:52 24 August 2010

By Chris Crees IT S that time of the year again when the fanatical footie fan spends the afternoon or evening hammering their F5 key on the transfer page, in the vain hope that their club has signed the next Cristiano Ronaldo or a player that might make a

By Chris Crees

IT'S that time of the year again when the fanatical footie fan spends the afternoon or evening hammering their F5 key on the transfer page, in the vain hope that their club has signed the next Cristiano Ronaldo or a player that might make a difference.

I must admit I've been guilty of that in the past, only to end up disappointed that the cheque book was kept firmly closed or we signed a player that got me as excited as watching a plank warp.

We are of course talking about the closure of the much-maligned January transfer window.

Come on, own up, you do find it quite exciting, don't you, even if you might not entirely agree with it?

At the close of business on Saturday January 30, I counted 219 transactions in the month, made up of 98 loans, 37 free transfers, 26 'unattached' and the most curious of all, 54 'undisclosed' transfers, which leaves only four transactions that actually disclosed a transfer fee!

Now as a true fan, as far as I'm concerned half the fun of buying a new player is discovering what the club paid for him, but this now seems to be a thing of the past and I can't help wondering why?

Are clubs simply too embarrassed to reveal how much they've spent on a player in case the £5m they've spent was in fact £4.5m too much, or is there some other reason? Either way, it's spoiling my enjoyment, but it does pose the question "should the fans be entitled to know?"

So, with only 58 transactions actually involving a fee and the remaining 161 made up of loans, freebies and players unattached, where's the logic in having a window at all, as it seems the clubs don't have any money to spend in January anyway!?

Is there any real harm in allowing transfers not involving a fee to take place as and when required? It might just save a club some much-needed cash by offloading a player, or kick-start the career of a player who otherwise wouldn't get a game until the next window arrives.

The transfer window could also prospectively shatter a club's dreams if they lose some of their top players in January and that cannot be right, particularly at a lower level.

All the window is generating is a mountain of paperwork at the FA and Football League for a month and in my opinion it's time to scrap it.

What's more, I don't have a never-ending supply of F5 keys.


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