Ah, I saw you: sighing, ahead of blindly clicking on another article. Think I`m going to moan about new signing Ian Henderson`s chocolate teapot credentials? Well, you`re right…
Nick Hornby, writer of Feaver Pitch, had it right when he said the default countenance of any football fan is cynicism. Look at my automatic response to Ian Henderson`s arrival yesterday, on a free: Ex-Norwich? Get him out. Winger-cum-striker with less than ten career goals at aged 24? Jog on. Also-ran? You said it… and-so-on.
Returning to Hornby`s remark, I`d retort: if fans are automatically cynical, it`s only because they care. (Although in rare cases, this sour look is also because the wind really did change out on the terraces, just as mum always promised and your face just actually stayed that way).
So, is it possible to care too much? I mean, I`m not manager and if I was, at first glance I wouldn`t have even considered signing the out-of-contract Henderson. Not when he supposedly faces competition in the arrivals lounge form someone who, although might be ten years his senior, is an unmanly more glamorous name: Nolberto Solano.
However, while January winds on without an announcement beyond the preliminaries on the Peruvian, Henderson manages to pop up from nowhere and was seals a move inside seven days… madness! If he`s as quick on the pitch as he was getting into Colchester, then boy we`ve unearthed a talent!
Aright, enough of my pride-saving sarcasm: let`s look for positives. Ex-Norwich… that ticks the knows-local-area box quite nicely! Versatile attacker… hummm yes, capable of operating in a multiple attacking positions, especially in those speedy break-away moments… ops. You see, failed again already!
Just as I was on the verge of giving up trying to figure out exactly why Aid Boothroyd has made Henderson his third transfer signing this window, a chance fact hit me in the face. The pair have previous, as they worked together at Carrow Road, on youth-team duty.
Suddenly it all clicks: Paul Lambert had his lieutenants (Alan Maybury) and otherwise unproven sidekicks (Gary Holt). Now, we enter the age of Boothroyd`s blue-chip boys: the kind of player managers are willing not only to trust but also know how to fire-up and motivate. And to think I was getting all worried!
Okay, Hendo. You`ve passed my first test. Besides, there is another reason why cynicism shouldn`t win the day over premature judgment here – I`ve not even seen the lad play yet!
So what do you think?
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