Thomas Turner isn’t a fan of the transfer window.
Monday, I’m told, was the most depressing day of the year.
Quite fitting then that it is in January. A month of being surrounded by those feebly attempting to stop doing the things which made 2012 enjoyable for them. The month where Burnley sides of old crumbled into a shadow of their former selves. The month where – after a seemingly never ending blast of manufactured festive frenzy – the supermarkets begin to stock Easter eggs.
Although my fingernails have remained untouched since the opening chords of Auld Lang Syne, there is another dreaded part of January which may well put an end to that. Welcome everyone, to the January transfer window.
Social media and 24-hour rolling news have made this 31-day marathon of misery almost unbearable. Jim White is rivalled only by the royal baby hospital reporters in being afforded cult status on the basis of reporting no news.
Saddest of all is that despite there being nearly three million people unemployed in this country, somebody is being paid to think up ideas like having Brian Swanson stood gobbing off in front of a massive six-foot calculator working out how much has been spent thus far in the window. And, of course, how that compares to the last five years.
Even when you think the whole ordeal is nearly over there’s more to come. The countdown timer which has been mercilessly ticking on Sky Sports News all month suddenly becomes redundant at half past ten on the final day, when good old Jim drops the bombshell that deals may well be completed after the 11pm deadline. And even then we have to wait another hour for the Spanish window to ‘slam shut’. Bloody continentals.
As if it wasn’t bad enough hearing ‘the professionals’ speculate, suddenly every Tom, Dick and Harry becomes the bearer of a nugget of inside information. You couldn’t walk to the end of the street last summer without someone muttering the words ‘well my mate cuts Chris McCann’s hair and…’, or something equally ridiculous. I don’t know how many mates this hairdresser has but I’ve met a bloody few. Open your ears for a minute or two at any Burnley game this month and I guarantee you will hear someone say ‘he could do a job for us’.
The most innocuous of occurrences suddenly get spun into the most elaborate of rumours. Danny Ings being spotted at Kitchens filling up a ‘suspicious amount’ suddenly amounts to him having a medical at Southampton that very day. A car with the registration plate ‘L430 AB9′ being parked outside the ticket office automatically means Ashley Barnes is upstairs crunching numbers with Sean Dyche.
And the problem is arguably even worse at Burnley because of this ‘selling club’ tag which many fans have placed upon the club, and the preposterous suggestions that the chairmen somehow stand to cash in from any big departures. As much as some would like to believe otherwise, any outgoings this month will be adjudged to be in the interests of the club, and not to pay for another slide for Mike Garlick’s swimming pool.
I don’t have the foggiest idea of the likelihood of Danny Ings still being here come February. I similarly don’t have a clue if anybody is likely to come in on loan. And for once, I’m determined to not to let the speculation surrounding it bother me. Neither should you.
What do you make of the January merry-go-round? Comment below.