Carlos Carvalhal admitted this week in The Star that he is somewhat struggling to nail down a new central defender and raised more than an eyebrow with the revelation that “my staff and I have seen more than 200 centre-backs but for various reasons we have not brought one in.”
It brought about some online criticism from fans wondering just why on earth they still haven’t sufficiently filled a hole in their squad that has been gaping since the season before last finished.
Fans are right to be frustrated but it appears as though some think it’s as simple as giving someone a ring, offering a few quid and getting the scarf ready for the photos (there’s no kit to hold up but that’s another story).
So here are some possible and/or probable reasons why Carvalhal has failed so far to get his man, or men. SPOILER ...most of it is down to money in some way or another.
There aren’t that many really good ones available
Of those who have moved this summer, are there any who you thought ‘he’s who we needed’? The good ones are already at clubs who don’t want them to leave or if they are about to be sold then there will be a long list of suitors.
Or, it’s because clubs know/think Wednesday are loaded
Splashing out on Jordan Rhodes in January did nothing to play down the notion that there’s money about Hillsborough. Wednesday have moved to a different level in the market and clubs will try and eke out as much cash as they can.
Or, they know Carlos is desperate
It’s no secret they need a central defender - it’s been that way since May last year - so it’s a case of value based on demand. If you want him, you’ll have to get that wallet open.
Or, the player will just take his time because it suits him
If someone knows there is interest from Wednesday and probably others, it makes sense for them to hold fire as long as possible. The closer we get to the end of the transfer window, the more desperate the club becomes and the more money the player is likely to get in his wages. Likewise clubs can get a few extra on the transfer fees.
Or, they don’t want to gamble with inexperience
What about the foreign market, some say. What about loaning a Premier League kid? Both of these options come with an element of uncertainty, so much more so than someone who knows the league and the level. Wednesday aren’t in a position to be carrying anyone this season.
Of course on the flip side, it could be that Wednesday’s scouting isn’t up to much. But if that figure of 200 centre-backs is true, they can’t be accused of not widely casting the net.
The simple fact is that players in this position have become a rich commodity in the Championship and unless you are blessed with the disgraceful reward for failure that is the parachute payments system, then you are going to have to bide your time and hope you can dig out a diamond.
Carvalhal learned last year that a central defender would cost a lot more than he initially thought. In the meantime, the price has only gone up.
If the money’s not there, the need is great and the principles of Financial Fair Play are held dear, then perhaps it’s time to look at selling one of your own to fund recruitment.