Optimism abounded in spades when we got Cook in early, yet the condition of the squad is now fast becoming of grave concern.
There is not a single defender signed to Walsall Football Club who wasn’t already here when James O’Connor and Matt Preston were unceremoniously jettisoned. Not one. Of those who are (still) here, one is potentially facing a lengthy injury lay-off before a ball has been kicked, two are below the required standard, and one now isn’t a right back anymore… and this is a squad that stayed up with five days to spare.
I’m struggling to understand what the problem is. Surely the outlay on Cook plus Ismail doesn’t exceed what we were paying Jackson plus Oztumer (I’d be very surprised if it was even as much).
Granted, Flanagan, Butterfield, & Shorrock won’t have been on a fortune, but I can’t believe that Ginnelly is commanding more than half of that combined saving. If Dunn is on anything approaching what Gillespie was, those two deals combine to equal an awful bit of business. None of this is even considering Cuvelier’s wage, the fact that we are either currently saving whatever we were paying the myriad loanees last season, or we were quids in at the time if they were subsidised, as without them we had nothing remotely approaching a full squad at any point. Plus, Jake Jervis and Luton saved us from otherwise shelling out £100k in January, so that must still be knocking about somewhere.