When I first moved to London I had the typical northerner reaction to pricing. I spent most of the first few months saying ‘how much!’ I’ve had the same reaction to Championship player sales this transfer window.
Ex-Owl Michail Antonio has come a long way in 18 months from being substituted at half time during a game by Stuart Gray for ineptitude to being sold to West Ham for £7m.
This level of spending has been like this for seasons but Wednesday haven’t been able to indulge in treating themselves to an extravagant signing or two.
With Milan Mandaric’s wage cap, buying Stevie May last season for £800k was a big signing for Wednesday. Whilst this wasn’t an eye-watering amount to spend on a player, when you look at what we’ve gained from his signing you have to ask yourself was he worth it? Especially when Wednesday were looking for an asking price of £2m to sell him on.
It also sets my teeth on edge a little when I read we were prepared to pay Gary Hooper £32k a week.
Maybe after living through the Pleat/Wilson years I’ve become a cautiously frugal football fan.
The Owls have spent somwhere in the region of £9m on 15 players in this window, Matias and Forestieri being the main purchases of over £2m each.
We do need to spend money on better players and when you compare us to Middlesbrough, who have spent just about half of that, on Stuart Downing alone, we have bought some decent players but the cautious northerner/Wednesdayite in me can’t help but think about value for money.
You do eventually start to look at some prices down south as ‘reasonable’ once you’ve lived here for a little while.
I’m hoping that’s what will eventually happen with Championship transfers.