What’s this? A new signing? A goalkeeper, to boot…
Welcome to AFCW Ross Worner. Got to be honest, with the little rumours from the ITK types about there being a signing – and the club’s official Twatter feed doing likewise – I wouldn’t have guessed we’d get a) a keeper, and b) him. But then, our transfers have mostly been kept to our collective chests.
So, what’s the craic with him? Reading around, it seems like the female section of our fanbase want him to forcefully command their box. Come on lasses, he’s only 23, he’s far too old/young for you…
Is he any good? The vox pops suggests he is, people saying that when he played against us for the Shots he looked a better prospect than Seb. He’s 6ft 1, ex-Charlton and comes with the tag of “promising youngster”.
It does seem that things have fitted in quite quickly on this score. As you know by now, Ashley Bayes is our new goalkeeping coach and #2 shotstopper. Paul Priddy retiring was probably the worst kept secret at the club, and it does seem NA has gone down the route we all expected to over this.
Although you all thought at one time or another it would be Sully snr.
It makes sense though – if AB is a decent goalkeeping coach, then all well and good. As the OS link earlier suggested, Bayes has been dealing with NA throughout the summer, and Worner was the no-brainer.
But then, as NA said, the structure of our goalkeeping section has changed. Being the second keeper on the bench is purgatory at the best of times, so if we can have somebody who does the coaching filling that role, that’s two birds who are looking nervously for one stone to be slung at them.
As we know with Sully jnr, if Worner’s back went again, there’s plenty on loan we can get in.
This does pose a couple more questions though. To nobody’s surprise, Ruiz is gone. He got overlooked when we literally needed a keeper with 24 hours notice, and appearedÂ he got signed only because he was cheap and TB fancied his bird.
He played once at Northampton, and he didn’t really look much better than what we previously had – both Sullivans were far more assured – and this new way of doing things is better for all concerned.
All of which leaves Seb.
He could overcome a lot of his ball mishandling issues, but to do that he’ll need to play regularly and in a team where him ballsing up won’t matter quite so much.
In our case, that’s the last thing we need next season. By the sounds of it, he’s still going to be here next season, at least as “our” player. But if we’ve brought in a keeper who is closely tied with the new GK coach, then you have to think that the plan is to go out on a long loan.
Otherwise, it doesn’t seem that we know quite what to do with him. The management certainly didn’t trust him last season, and his supposed wages of Â£1500 p/w might be more of a millstone than ever.
Obviously, he’s wise enough to know not to accept any payoff if he got offered one, he wouldn’t get that sort of alleged dough anywhere else, although he will have to start playing regularly again – unless he does think that two years without regular football but without injury is going to help him.
He’s young enough to come back, and he’s smart enough to know what’s what, but right now, he’s at the wrong place at the wrong time of his career. Whatever we end up doing with him won’t be ideal, but it will have to be the least worst option.
And I bet that if his wages really are what they’re often quoted, the club will be a lot less willing to let those sort of deals happen. One can’t help thinking it was done with his penalty saves at Eastlands in mind.
Still, it’s all part of the Learning Curveâ„¢ and it does seem the keeper situation is finally sorted. No doubt as soon as you start reading this we will have got another signing, which means another update due. But hey, it’s better than twiddling your thumbs…