Wednesday 21 February 2018

We gotta love the way they move

Just as Coca Cola is said to have invented our current image of Santa Claus, so we may one day claim that Sky Sports News created the concept of the transfer window. Or at the very least deadline day, though the eagle-eyed may point out that it is impossible to have one without the other.

But it's probably apt that an event now marketed as one of the highlights of the Premier League season is in fact an import from abroad.

With the passing of each window it becomes ever more abundantly clear that England's top flight is, in fact, an international league stocked predominantly with imported players and managers, which happens to be hosted in England using local clubs as vehicles to generate the vast, vast sums that make deadline day the most bizarre game of supermarket sweep ever seen, with Jim White in the Dale Winton role. And yet foreign players are cited in some quarters as the cause of the Premier League's ills.

For most of us, transfer deadline day is the closest thing we have to one of those major American TV events we hear so much about, such as Superbowl Sunday.

It's a shared viewing experience which allows us to show up at work the next day to take some strange, unquantifiable comfort from the knowledge that the person sitting next to us also saw the two lads simulating oral sex behind the Sky reporter standing outside Hull City's training ground, the journalist 12 hours into a stint trying to drum up some sort of drama out of each car that drove in and out of the complex. Whether or not they actually tied up the season-long loan deal for Alan Hutton is largely irrelevant.

Like Christmas, this is really just about bringing people together.

Evan Fanning

Sunday Independent

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