People often compare Transfer Deadline day to Christmas for football fans, however I have never known Christmas day to be full of such nerves, excitement and false rumours….actually maybe that does sound like last year’s festivities…Back to business though and I have seen much negativity and nervousness around Brighton fans today. The cause of this drama? A rather audacious bid from none other than Crystal Palace for Bridcutt and Ulloa. The deal included £1.75M for Bridcutt and £5M for Ulloa, unsurprisingly this was rejected. This sent many into a frenzy over the prospect of losing our supposed prized assets, yet I feel we have jumped the gun too early.
It is well documented that Bridcutt can cut it in the Premier league, a class player who has the potential to be a midfield maestro week in week out at the highest level. We as a club may not be able to offer him this opportunity and the time will come when we say goodbye take the money and move on. However many feel the time is not right as we have no cover for him. This is where we need to look at what we have. Rohan Ince has become a knight in shining armor, the news of Bridcutt’s injury was received with the upmost sadness and anticipation of how we were going to even live another day of our lives without him. Bring in Ince. Despite poor team performances at the start of the season, Ince proved himself to be the best of the bunch, it could not be ignored that Oscar was playing him in the role previously assigned to Bridcutt and therefore was acting as a like for like replacement. But there is so much more to him than that. His stature gives him an advantage, his forward vision, coupled with his confidence and calmness on the ball provides us with a player who can switch the game around, looking for attacking passes, or sitting back and calming the game down. At only 19 Ince has the potential to do great things. Perhaps the departure of Bridcutt is a blessing for him, after all, when one door closes another one opens. Without Bridcutt being first pick, Ince has had to step up to the plate and so far he is a capable ‘substitute’ for Liam. The price will have to be adjusted however, £1.75M is quite frankly, pathetic. Come back with £3M plus and we can start to talk business. Bridcutt does not seem as irreplaceable as he once used to be.
The Ulloa speculation is on the other hand a waste of time. Unless Bloom and Oscar organize a big night out on the town and unwillingly under the influence of alcohol sign him away, there is no chance he will be sold. I can assure us all that we are not stupid enough to sell our only fit striker at the moment, one who coincidentally has the potential to be a 20+ goal striker (which we have been crying out for for a while). Therefore I have nothing more to say on the matter and will dismiss this offer as highly speculative with zero chance of any outcome.
With 5 hours left till the deadline, and reports saying no permanent deals on the way, we will look to the loan market for back up. This does provide an advantage, once the transfer window is shut, clubs can finalise their squads and sort out any loose ends, quite often this results in some premier league players looking for new clubs, just because they are ‘rejected’ doesn’t mean they cant do a job for us, so it will be interesting to see who becomes available for loan. By no means is our season over if we do not sign anyone, so I think we should all just sit down with a cup of tea and a biscuit and enjoy the drama.