04/06/2007

A Lack Of Transfer Activity ?

There have been a lot of grumblings on the greenockmorton.net forum over the years, the most recent is that Jim McInally has been slow to bring in new faces to Cappielow. First team goalkeeper Paul Mathers has left the club. As have reserves Kenny McLean and Mick Fulton. No one has been added to last seasons squad as of yet and some fans are getting concerned we are missing out.

So far we have been linked with former St. Mirren goalkeeper Craig Hinchcliffe - who subsequently signed for Partick Thistle - and an unnamed Polish goalkeeper recommended by Artur Boruc. There were also rumours of a Rangers' youth player from Greenock signing on loan. I believe we are also still hopefull of taking Paul McGowan back to the club permanently but that McInally believes he will have to wait until McGowan gets frustrated at playing reserve and youth team football and requests a move thereby pressuring Celtic to drop their asking price. Kieran McAnespie was another name mentioned towards the end of last season but there has been no updates on that front for a while now.

These rumours apart Morton have been quiet on the transfer front. At the moment no players have been brought in but is this a bad thing ? Personally I don't think so, especially when you look at the calibre of players our opposition are bringing in and who are currently available.

St. Johnstone - The Saints have replaced Jason Scotland (free to Swansea) with David Weatherston. Weatherston's goals in the third division would suggest that he is a hot prospect. However, he is untried at first division level and might find the leap up too much. A player we were interested in last season but not one I think anyone should be concerned on missing out on. Scotland will be a massive loss for them and a big plus from our perspective.

Dundee - Morton fans will recognise one of their new arrivals as Stirling Albion's left winger David O'Brien. O'Brien is a tricky customer when on form but that doesn't seem to be that often. I've often read Stilring Albion fans praising his ability but lamenting his inconsistency. A good signing but again, not someone I'd be looking for us to sign. They have also signed David Worrell, a defender from Rotherham, who I know nothing about. We will have to wait until next season to see if we have missed out there.

Hamilton Accies - Hamilton's best signing could be a player who was already with them last season. Republic of Ireland Youth International James McCarthy decided that another year at the Accies would be better for his career development than moving to one of the big clubs (Chelsea, Liverpool, Rangers and Celtic) courting his signature. Apart from McCarthy Hamilton haven't signed anyone but have released four, including experienced midfielder Marvyn Wilson.

Stirling Albion - Last year's second division runners up have lost winger David O'Brien to Dundee (see above) but have signed three new players. Darren Gribben has signed on a free. A decent young striker who was released by Forfar for undisclosed disciplinary reasons. He has the potential to be a good signing but because of his problems at Forfar Gribben is not the type of person you would want to risk having in your dressing room. They have also signed Laurie Ellis from Cowdenbeath - not a player I'd like at Cappielow - and John Paul McBride. McBride was on trial at Morton a few seasons ago, if he wasn't worth a contract then I don't see how he could be worth one now.

Partick Thistle - Former Morton gaffer Ian McCall has cleared out half of last season's squad and brought in three new faces. He beat us to sign Craig Hinchcliffe but rather than be disappointed about this I think Morton fans should be happy as I don't think he is the standard of keeper we should be looking at. They have also signed Falkirk frees Ryan McStay and Marc Twaddle. These are two players who might have been worth looking at but who would say they are genuinely disappointed in our failure to capture either of them ?

Clyde, Livingston , Queen of the South and Dunfermline - Like us, these four teams have not signed anyone yet. Their only activity has been to release players. Amongst those frees was Alex Williams. Alex was an integral player in the third division championship season but never someone we are going to bring back for his off the field activities as much as the down turn in his form. At present Livingston are unable to sign anyone as a result of a dispute with Emmanuel Dorado. Pars chairman has told the BBC that his squad will be 'slashed' in the summer due to relegation from the SPL.

Looking at the players available and those that our rivals in the first division have signed so far I don't see any reason for Morton fans to be concerned. I'd become concerned if in a month from now we haven't signed anyone. I'd be even more concerned if we had wasted some of our transfer/wages budget on the players mentioned above. Patience is a virtue and I'd rather McInally took his time and got the right players rather than rush in in a panic and sign the uninspiring players that have been available so far.

3 comments:

Ewan said...

Well said, but never underestimate Morton fans' capacity for drama ;)

Simplyton said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Simplyton said...

We're damned if we do and damned if we dont

Last season we got in early for Jamie and I think the numbness of the play-off defeat meant there wasn't the clamour for signings etc.

This season its obvious as we are stepping up a division and need to strengthen - I have yet to see anyone freed who I would snap up so that leaves us with 2 options before we go chasing attached players - Either pick out the cream of the 2nd and offer them a crack at the 1st or players on the fringes of SPL

How many players did we play against last season that you could see as an improvement on what we have and could cut it at 1st division level?

Players from the SPL will likely become available once their clubs start their summer signings and realise who is surplus to requirements - So it will be later in the summer before we see movements on this front.

As you say give it another month before we start questioning what is going on - Just be in a position to swoop when the right player becomes available.

I tend to switch off reading the messageboard over the summer - So many whinners between signings, strips, commercial dept.
usually just a quick scan daily to see what the latest gossip is