Missed Opportunity for our Goalkeeping Problems?
Author: Emily Pulham. Published: 17 January 2020 at 12:36pm
Written by: George M.
Isn’t it just typical West Ham that after what felt like an eternity, Fabianski returned to the Starting XI after his injury and 4 games later he is out again. Super Fab was sorely missed during his time out and it looks like us fans will have to endure another couple of weeks without the Polish shot stopper.
On Wednesday, West Ham announced the re-signing of Darren Randolph from Middlesbrough for a fee of roughly £4m. There have been mixed feelings about the return of Randolph with some fans saying that Randolph is a logical transfer claiming that he knows the club, gets on with a lot of the other players and on his day is a worthy Premier League keeper. On the other hand, some fans mostly agree with the positives of the transfer but say looking deeper into the deal shows a lack of ambition by the club. This argument stems from the fact that the club have resigned a former player deemed not good enough 2 years ago when we sold him and therefore proves to be a step backwards. Whichever way the transfer is looked at, it’s fair to say that every West Ham fan wishes Randolph the best during second stint at the club.
However, have the club missed an opportunity to show real ambition and plan for the future? The most obvious solution to the goalkeeping problem would have been to target someone like Jack Butland who is pretty certain to be wishing a move to a Premier League club sometime soon. Butland still has time on his side and would’ve been a great back up to Fabianski for the latter’s final couple of years as a player. During his time as Fabianski’s backup, Butland could’ve been given the chance to be mentored by arguably one of the best goalkeepers in the league, played in our cup games and filled in whenever Fabianski was out injured (which looks like it may be a recurring theme considering Fabianski’s age).
Signing Butland also would’ve benefitted our young keepers Trott and Anang. Once Fabianski had retired, Trott or Anangcould’ve been promoted to the back-up keeper position and taken the same role Butland would’ve under Fabianski. By this time the young keepers would be in their early twenties,which would’ve been the prime time to start playing in first team cup games for the club.
Nonetheless, this foresightedness means nothing when the funds to acquire Butland were clearly not made available to Moyes. The £20m asking fee for Butland really doesn’t seem much considering his age and capability, plus it seems so logical to be bought by the club as a player for the near future.This screams a lack of thought, ambition and vision for the club. Aston Villa’s move to bring in Pepe Reina to cover for the injured Tom Heaton has an all too familiar feeling of when Victor Valdes signed for Manchester United and Middlesbrough, but it is arguable that Randolph’s doesn’t offer much more excitement than Reina at Villa.
Fortunes are always hiding as a West Ham fan and we may have just found one with the reports that Fabianski should only be out of action for a couple of weeks. Let’s just hope that Randolph can rise to the challenge and help us in this relegation battle.