EPL: Scrap the Transfer Window

Brian RhodesSenior Analyst IFebruary 5, 2009

Yet again, the January transfer window kerfuffle has ended, and the whole sordid affair ends with players shuffling between teams and deals collapsing due to lack of time (unless you are Arsenal, of course).

The only people to come out of this happy, it would appear, are the football agents who make too much money because of the nature of the transfer system.

Oh, and Arsenal, they signed Andrey Arshavin late on Monday evening quite some time after the official close of the transfer window. This happened under the clause that the agreement was made before the close of the deadline.

It would have been interesting to see if that deal would have collapsed if he hadn't passed his medical on the Monday?

During this period, my team tried to sign a veteran defender in Christian Panucci. The player came to the club and passed a club medical. He saw the facilities and was on the cusp of putting pen to paper, then the agents stepped in!

From a good prospect for the Tigers came an unhappy player from one of the best known teams in the world—Roma. Panucci is used to playing in one of the best leagues in the world, and with Premiership experience with Chelsea to boot.

The deal collapses, not because the player is unfit, not because he doesn't want to play for Hull City, but because the parasites known as football agents start to work out how they can maximise their percentage of the deal.

In this instance, the two clubs couldn't come to terms over a fee. Is that because the signing club has to pay the agents? Phil Brown went on record stating that there were too many parties involved in the transfer, and ultimately that was what killed the deal.

"We were hoping for one or two," Brown said, "but the reason is not where Hull City is in the Premier League, the stature of the football club, or the stature of the players; it is the transfer window that was standing in our way."

"It was just ridiculous what happened on Sunday and Monday," Brown continued, "but as far as we were concerned we weren't going to be held to ransom by players, agents, money, whatever."

But you say the the transfer window helps smaller clubs so they can make much needed money, during the transfer window, because of the artificially inflated prices that the compressed window produces.

Well, that may well be the case, but it also stops as many deals for small clubs as it produces.

The big question is: What exactly does the transfer window do for football?

Does it help anyone at all, big clubs, small clubs, Premiership, or fourth-tier clubs? The ultimate answer is no, not really. It only helps agents and the media when they create a storm of interest.

Phil Brown also said this about the activity of the transfer window, "It wastes energy and it saps you. My phone isn't ringing now; that is how pathetic it all is."