Often Partisan

Polishing Diamonds

It’s been a good end to the week hasn’t it? Not only a win against European opponents, a good performance from the team and a new Blues legend is born. Well, maybe it’s a bit too early to be throwing around the “L” word, but with performances like that it’s going to be hard to keep Redmond’s ability secret.

I’ve said before a few times my hopes for this season were for BCFC to finish it in the black, consolidated in this division at worst and maybe having pushed through a few young talents. Whilst I think circumstances have forced the issue somewhat, it’s good to see Redmond now has his first start, his first league start, his first home start and his first goal under his belt. I understand that Hughton has got to keep Redmond wrapped up in cotton wool a little; and that we can’t expect too much of him too soon but it’s been a long time since Blues fans had a homegrown star that they could be genuinely excited about.

I guess this is the positive of losing our premier league stars as it were. The squad may be thinner, but it’s now an opportunity for some of the younger players who maybe have been starved of chances to get into and about the first team and to shine. Every minute of first team action that they get adds to their value; every appearance they can make bloods them into what could be a blossoming professional career. Indeed, bringing through youth players just makes economic sense to the club – they don’t cost a lot yet can bring in a lot of money from future transfers; and when a few make it it promotes the team as somewhere for talented kids to come to in the hope of making it as pros – and so the cycle continues.

My big fear is that the board do not understand just what Redmond could be worth. Right now he’s a chunk of potentiality, an uncut diamond that needs it’s edges smoothing and polishing to a high shine. As an uncut diamond, he’s only of interest to other people who’ll want to polish and smooth him in their own manner, and as such won’t attract much money. Yet if he can get a whole season under his belt, and become a shiny gemstone in the crown of the first team – well, then his value shoots up. As an example, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain made 34 appearances for Southampton last year in League One, and subsequently went to Arsenal this summer for £12million. Mr Pannu, if you’re reading this, if there is one player you MUST hang on to, it’s Nathan Redmond.

The good bit is, Nathan isn’t the only youngster coming through. Yes, he’s the best of the bunch but there is more potential there. If we decide we don’t care about the league cup for instance, we could maybe look at giving Akwasi Asante a game, or Eddy Gnahore, or Brice Ntambwe – or even Mitchell Hancox, who was in the first team squad for the first time ever last night, at the tender age of 17. I’m not saying for definite that any of them will make it, but we will never know til we try. We have the chance this season I believe to try a few of them, and well … if they do well, it’s all to the good of the club.

In a season that has started in controversy, in despair and with our heads bowed and beaten, we now have reason to be proud once more. There are lots of reasons to be positive and more than ever, I’m proud to be a bluenose. I hope others who may not feel as upbeat and optimistic will take heart in Thursday night’s performance and join me in daring to believe again that there is hope in supporting Blues.

 

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8 Responses to “Polishing Diamonds”

  • Scoobers says:

    Full credit must go to the Terry Westley IMO for helping bring through the likes of Redmond and Mutch, the first set of youngsters that have been good enough for Blues to bring into the first team in many seasons

  • GoodyBlueShoes says:

    Your editorial piece is laudable and I am all for positivity in the midst of gloom. In fact my last comments going back to July made mention of the good opportunities that lay ahead. However success is relative and anybody still thinking we are going to bounce back up to the Premier should think again. Yes we have a good set of youngsters but also a very long season ahead of us. We still need 5 additional players to bolster the squad. 4 days to go until the transfer window closes and precious little coming out of the rumour mill. However and just as importantly we need a new owner asap and I believe this will happen in the next couple of months. Once again my blue bretheren we are in a sticky place so as a consequence must stick together. We have seen much that is ugly over the last few years regarding the “business” that is football at Blues and at many other clubs around the world. Against the Portuguese at St Andrews we collectively experienced the other side of the coin. . good football played beautifully!!!

  • OT199 says:

    In every dark cloud there is a silver lining. The first glimpses are comming though, hopefully.

  • Dan says:

    I am making a bold comparison here. Don’t know how familiar you are with German football, but surely everyone here remembers Borussia Dortmund – Champions League winners of ’97. They, for years, lived above what they were actually capable of financially. Around the years 2003 to 2005 they were in a deep deep financial crisis due to this. What happened was them being forced for years to play with an incredibly young squad and yes they bordered to relegation 2-3 years. And then had another two years of missing out European football. Finally, seaon 10/11 came about. All they wanted was achieving a Euroleague spot, but what we saw last year was the youngest ever squad to absolutely dominate the league, football fans around the country who raved about their style of football, another few extremely talented youngsters who are already beginning to shine in the German national side and subsequently the championship for them.

    I am not saying Blues are in a similiar condition. Our youth academy is probably not that good as Dortmunds is, we don’t really have a 80k seater stadium filled every Saturday no matter what, but building up a young squad over a few years with a competent manager can be hugely beneficial financially, footballwise and for the fans. I think we have that kind of manager with Chris now. All it takes is time and patience.

  • Mez says:

    Definitely a bonus side effect of relegation.

  • AR says:

    “They don’t cost a lot but yet can bring in a lot in future transfers”. This for me is a most depressing statement – it may be reality but it doesn’t half hurt. This, combined with reading that Jerome will be off to Fulham or Bolton has really hit hard. What has the Board done with the money – it seems we would have been selling players even if we had remained in the Premiership.

  • jaffa says:

    Arron Lennon and Jermain Defoe came to mind when watching Redmond the other night!

  • mac says:

    well i honestly think that the good times are not far around the corner for my beloved blues, i can’t see us gaining automatic promotion this season but i would not be surprised if we make the play offs.
    i love the blues and have supported this club for as long as i can remember, i went to my first game when i was only 8 years old and that was 31 years ago and there have been worse times than the current situation the club is in. you’ve just got to be optimistic. keep right on.


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