The pre-season is packed with rumours, titbits and half-truths. Sites like mine help grease the wheels, but where the stories come from is anyone’s guess.
Take the name Nicky Ajose. Thanks to a link through a reputable media outlet, I did an article on here about him, but I’m now of the understanding he is not one we’ve lodged a contract offer with, nor that we’ve even got on a list of targets. The same goes for Boldewijn – the Nottingham Post had us down as interested, but Michael Hortin was led to believe that’s not the case. Where do the stories originate? Agents? Journalists looking to sell papers?
One good place for a story is Peterborough boss Darragh MacAnthony and he’s been talking about Mark O’Hara, again. To be fair, he was asked, but he’s always quick to outline the landscape as he sees it. He’s claimed we still want O’Hara, but are trying to raise funds and, in the meantime, an SPFL club have become interested.
He claims it’s a ‘top four’ SPFL club. For my money, that’s got to be Aberdeen. Mainly because Celtic and Rangers were first and second and, if it was Kilmarnock, wouldn’t he have said a ‘top three’ club, rather than top four?
I also have to question the claim we’ve gone away to raise funds. We’re not broke, the budget we have isn’t peanuts. The only need here is to apportion budget. Mark O’Hara, a good player, is sure to be on our list, but is he the big signing right at the top? I’d say no.
There isn’t any real clarity in the situation, other than the fact MacAnthony still believes us to be interested. One thing is for sure; if we are after him we won’t be bullied into paying over the odds. That’s not Danny’s style.
Another player we were linked with is Tarique Fosu, but it appears we’re going to miss out. I did think the Fosu story sounded about right. He was exactly the sort of player we would target. His stock had dropped after a tough season, he had League One experience and he plays on the flank. However, as I suggested when he was first linked, it looks like Oxford are going to beat us to it. They’re close to finalising a three-year deal for the wide man, who will once again link up with Karl Robinson.
Everything is beginning to happen in League One, there have been lots of transfers which, if I get chance tonight, I’ll round up.
I’d like to add a big personal ‘thank you’ to Dean and Marcus of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight. It was a privilege and an honour to spend the morning around the Lancaster, Dakota, Hurricanes and Spitfires, hearing tales of bravery, sacrifice and heroism.