I’ve avoided the obvious headline of ‘he belonged to us’ as I think I’ve seen it a hundred times on Twitter already. Whatever you label it as, the facts are the same: Bruno Andrade has left the Imps.
In the summer, he was linked with moves to the likes of Portsmouth, yet oddly when push came to shove it appears no Championship team wanted to take a punt. Nor did a League One side. No, when Bruno Andrade left Lincoln City, it was for Salford. 14th in League Two.
I’ve seen comments such as ‘lack of ambition’ on social media already and I guess that’s how it is going to look. It’s like when Nathan Arnold left us in 2017/18, or when Matt Green left in 2018/19. Salford like our players, usually a season after we’ve had the best from them. However, I’m not going to start calling Bruno because he’s left.
I can understand what the thoughts of some might be. I’ve seen people commenting he drifts in and out of games, he can be unpredictable (red card against Swindon a case point) but I’m not buying all of that. Yes, he drifts in and out of games, as wingers can do when the game isn’t going your way. What I’ve seen from Bruno is his desire to drive forward, his creativity and penchant for great goals and his excellent link-up play with Harry Toffolo. It will be very easy for fans to start looking for the negatives in Bruno’s play, but few did that in February last year when he hauled a side out of form through a tough month. Nobody called him when he lashed home that goal against Everton.
No, for my money Bruno Andrade is a big loss to this squad. I know his contract was up in the summer and as I understand it, he was offered a huge deal with Salford, but whatever the facts are, he’s a big loss.
I can’t help but feel he was always one kick away from being the scapegoat. Over the summer, all the usual ‘in the know’ faces were telling me how he was disruptive behind the scenes, how he wanted a move, how he wasn’t a team player. He started the season on the bench and when he did score against Southend there were accusations he wasn’t celebrating. the undercurrent of disliking him was always there but then he always came up with something to turn the tide against him.
Banned and left the field petulantly? Here’s a Player of the Month award to quieten you down. Not celebrating goals? Here’s a stunner against a Premier League side in the EFL Cup for you, and a celebration to match.
I suppose it could be said that despite his good performances since Michael Appleton came in, the goals haven’t followed. He hasn’t scored since that game against Everton and he’s only registered two assists as well. Is that the sort of scintillating form we expect from our game-changer, our marquee signing of 2018? Maybe not, but that’s not to detract from the quality footballer he is.
Part of me does have to question it being Salford he’s moved to. It feels like a big step back, with the lack of ambition accusations certain to ring out over the coming weeks. Maybe ambition these days is securing a big future on wages. Maybe the Championship clubs weren’t up for taking a punt, or League One clubs weren’t able to outspend the Class of ’92 and their millions. I don’t know, but Bruno Andrade has a massive task on his hands now. As Matt Green and Nathan proved, Salford is not an easy gig and if you don’t hit the ground running then you’re soon on your way out. I don’t see a huge difference between them and Billericay or Romford, apart from the fact Glenn Tamplin is a nutcase. They skew the wages in certain divisions, they bring in big-name players for their level and ultimately spend an awful lot of money. It didn’t work out for our export to Billericay or the Salford boys and if Bruno isn’t properly fit when he’s paraded in front of the Salford fans, it might be a tough gig for him too.
My memories of Bruno will always be positive. It will be hard not to remember the goal against MK Dons last season, the one that clinched us the title in my eyes. There was also that excellent last-gasp winner in the FA Cup against Northampton, another fantastic afternoon of action with a thrilling climax.
Predictably, the reaction has been mixed on social media with a selection of Twitter comments rounding off this piece.
What’s the song Alan ‘Money Money Money’ 💷 😂. Good luck to him but so hope the Salford model goes 💥.
— Andy Pearson (@AndyPearson68) January 13, 2020
Have they paid for his song or do we get to keep it? 😬🤔
— Jon Clack (@redIMPoster) January 13, 2020
Thanks for the memories @Brunsky36 and good luck at Salford. Sure you will miss the crowds singing 'your song'
— Kev McCarthy (@PandorasBoxCC) January 13, 2020
I hope he knows what he’s doing. Salford might be on the way up, but they might also be the next Forest Green, Eastleigh… Rushden & Diamonds?!
— Adrian Clark (@adrianclark) January 13, 2020
Chasing the easy money. Bags of potential, could easily play Championship but instead goes to the worst club in the EFL. Sod wish him well! UTI
— Daniel parkinson (@Parky_imp) January 13, 2020
money talks, can’t blame him… just a shame he’s stepping down to L2 when he’s good enough to play in the champ
— baby em (@emily_szn) January 13, 2020
— Ryan Whelan (@mrweasley93) January 13, 2020