Darnhill Claret wrote:LTL please explain the point that you consistently make, that our players are all 12 months older than they were this time
last year. I understand the ageing process, but don’t understand how that weakens us by comparison to players at other clubs.
Stronger or weaker applies to every aspect of the club. Like it or not football is as much about money as it is on the pitch performance. Older players are attracting less interest in the market and lower transfer fees. So players getting older decreases our net financial worth.
The fact that our players are a year older means they have also moved closer to the end of their contracts. That means giving them a new contract ( which might entail more years than we would like to give them ) or letting them leave on a free.
Obviously, that doesn't apply to everyone. Dwight is a year older and that year has seen his value sky rocket. Younger players have greater freedom for movement. The value of an older player is highly likely to decrease, but the value of a younger player ( with more time on their hands ) could go either way. Attracting players that are more likely to improve / increase in value is the difference between good scouting and bad ( mixed with a bit of common sense ).
It is also fair to say that nothing is ever certain in football. A club could bring in a hot young player and that player could experience a career ending injury that sees their investment go up in smoke. However, losing the battle against the clock of advancing years, is pretty much a guaranteed result. It isn't a matter of will it happen, but when.
To clarify the overall thrust of my previous post, I think we might be slightly stronger on the playing front.
In terms of overall impact Jay is an upgrade on Voke.
I'm not sure about Pieters. He represents an upgrade on an empty slot, but so would my cat. In terms of an upgrade on an injured or otherwise unavailable Wardy the same could be said.
However, I don't think he represents an improvement on a Wardy who could maybe still do a bit and given his flat back defensive suitability and I'm worried he could diminish the impact of Dwight - which would make us a lot weaker.
The players at every club get a year older every single season. However, the difference between our club and the vast majority is that we don't have a good spread of ages. Most of our eggs are in the Twilight basket and while older players can still perform the market is growing more averse to them and their value is falling quickly, while the price of younger players is rising rapidly.
Having a concentration of older players in our squad increases the financial impact on a club when everyone gets a year older.
If you have a warehouse stocked with commodities that nobody wants, tarnished with relatively high upkeep costs, that will diminish your ability to compete in the market going forward. People pay less for unwanted goods and if the price of replacing what you have is rising quickly you will run out of money even if you are being thrifty in your expenditure.
The only way to offset that is to have money invested in players who can keep pace with the changing market demands.
By that I don't mean spending £10-£20m on the next Premier League ready youngster. I mean spending £1-2m on good quality players who could be reasonably expected to step up over the next year or two - free transfers if possible. It would still represent an outlay, but it could balance the books over the short term until our Academy can crank up its production.
We don't appear to have done anything like that in this window so far and we haven't done it previously. That is why we are limited to sell and replace or leave and replace. However, in previous windows we have actually brought in players that had some chance of increasing their value. I don't think Jay and Pieters can lay claim to that.
I think that we are a looking a lot weaker in relation to the financial / player development side of things. Especially in terms of planning for the future in terms of were we might find ourselves - up or down we have reduced our options.
Taking the playing side of things and the financial / strategic side of things together I would say that we are currently weaker.
Sorry I couldn't answer using fewer words, but when explaining the reasoning behind a point and addressing the playing / financial impact of new players on a club it takes more words than addressing " are these two players an upgrade on these two players ". To me the question of whether we are stronger or weaker is multi-faceted.
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