So itâ€™s 6pm on Tuesday and the transfer window slams shut but the skeletal, spindly fingers of Daniel Levy combine with the force 10 gale that is Harry Redknappâ€™s mouth and somehow force a gap in the glazing wide enough for Rafael Van der Vaart to jump through.
All summer long, from the outside itâ€™s looked like weâ€™ve needed cover in the goalkeeping and central defending departments and a boost to the forward and creative midfield areas. With just Sandro (and how many Sandra Redknapp jokes are we going to hear in the next few months) and Gallas newly signed it looked like we were nowhere near covering all those areas but add keeper Stipe Pletikosa (household name in Split apparently) to the Dutchman with the snigger-inducing name and Redknapp could argue that everythingâ€™s sorted & job done.
If nothing else, the signing of Van der Vaart has made us forget the Wigan shambles and view the upcoming Moneybags league games with more optimism. More than that though, he seems like a good chap. He grew up in a caravan to become one half of the Dutch equivalent of Posh and Becks but heâ€™s reported as a modest & humble individual, proud of his background and one who hasnâ€™t let success go to his head. He seems to be as excited about the move as we are.
What a contrast to two years ago when we signed Fraizer Campbell on loan on deadline day. Weâ€™ve ended up with one of the best left feet in Europe on our books who if he puts in as much effort as Campbell did for us, is guaranteed to become a crowd favourite. As well as a player who can play anywhere in the front four or five and get goals, weâ€™re actually going to have a player in the team who might trouble the keeper from free kicks around the box and what a change thatâ€™ll make.
So whereâ€™s he going to fit in the team? Unless Harry decides to move away from 4-4-2 then itâ€™s got to be up front. In midfield weâ€™ve got Lennon, Modric, Kranjcar, Huddlestone, Bale, Palacios, Sandro, Jenas, Oâ€™Hara and Bentley to name but ten all fighting for a place. In attack the pickings are much slimmer with Pav, Robbie and Gio doing little at the moment to suggest that theyâ€™re going to do much more than make up the numbers. Defoe and Crouch are our current first choice forwards but both are currently carrying knocks and neither will be picked for every game anyway. Iâ€™d expect Harry to try and start the new boy alongside or just behind one of those two at least at the beginning and until he gets the pace of the Premier League.
Wherever he plays heâ€™s going to add class, touch and poise. Everyoneâ€™s agreed that this appears to be the signing of the summer and I for one canâ€™t wait to see him in action.
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