What hogwash

IT is that time of the year again when teams hit the transfer market in search of better quality for the coming season.

IT is that time of the year again when teams hit the transfer market in search of better quality for the coming season.

For members of the Fourth Estate it is speculation season as we try to bring out the latest club news. With such speculation comes intriguing side stories when coaches also account for, especially their failures of the previous season.

And it is some of the hogwash spewed by some of these coaches - some of whom easily qualify to be labelled mercenaries - that got me thinking.

For far too long we have allowed some of the gentlemen who blot the crucial yet thankless profession get away with murder, blaming their incapacity on the fact that they had no input when management bought them players.

Number one, when a coach is hired, they find a team with a complete squad of players with short, medium and long term contracts.

Coaches are then at liberty to suggest which areas need strengthening and which players are surplus to requirement - all these in line with the club's recruitment policies and their financial resources.

And it is not unheard of for a coach to arrive at a new club and sweep the boards as did Ted Dumitru at Kaizer Chiefs back in 1986.

If you thought that was a once-off miracle, the Romanian moved to Mamelodi Sundowns, dusted off files of the likes of Daniel Mudau from the transfer basket and repeated the feat. To my knowledge, the coach need only submit a profile of a player and it is up to managment to get the best available candidate.

My main concern, you see, is why do some of these coaches leave their rumbling until they are fired and, to crown it, they get away without revealing specifics such as, for example, "I wanted Benedict Vilakazi from Orlando Pirates or Jose Torrealba from Sundowns", so that we can audit if they have a case.

That brings me to the next point of concern, which is the secrecy surrounding the South African transfer market. Why is it that the value of Premier Soccer League players remains the best kept secret?

A case in point is that of Onyekachi Okonkwo. If most PSL clubs knew he was valued at around R3 million, as reported, I bet he would be at Chloorkop as we speak. That would have ensured retention of quality in our league.

It has become more imperative now that the league has clinched a record broadcast deal which automatically means better monthly grants to the clubs. That would ensure that even Joe Public has a picture of the expenditure of their favourite clubs. Don't we model ourselves on the English Premiership? If the answer is yes, then we might just go the whole hog.