January – Back To Business
The players may have been enjoying a long-awaited break over the festive season but for me, as soon as the New Year hangovers had worn off, it was time to get back to work. January had hit – it was time for another transfer window
; perhaps the most distressing time of all.
If the players were in long need of a rest then you cannot imagine how much I needed it. I was massively burnt out from all the working and weekly Spanish courses – I too wanted a rest. Some long awaited sleep and time with the family was all I needed; so I returned to Scotland for a small holiday, if you could call it that. It may have been 30 degrees colder than in sunny Spain but for me it was perfect, for once I savoured the heavy snow and cold, wet days.
Some players are often open about their homesickness; that was exactly how I had felt before and it was probably the cause of all the stress I had felt. But, when I return to Oviedo, I was much happier. Scrap that, I was pumped
for the second half of the season. Suddenly I relished the challenge of guiding Oviedo to a play-off place and getting them one step closer to where they belong – back to La Liga
. But I knew that was not going to be easy; I needed to get some transfer business done before I could even think about that.
Iker Allegre – Mutual Termination
It was clear to see that Iker – who had only arrived just before I joined the club – was not good enough for the first team, and, as I did not have enough spaces to register him (22 places – ridiculous if you ask me), I had to get rid of him. I tried offering him to clubs for nothing, but nobody wanted him, so eventually after some heated discussions with him - during which he accused me of forcing him out of the club
– I finally just released him on a fee. Highly annoyingly, he was then snapped up by Liga Adelante side Hospitalet
. Why not just take him when I offered him, eh?
Efren Urrutia – S.D. Logrones – Pre-Contact
Another highly frustrating transfer; Urrutia was a player that in my opinion is not good enough for any team. He may only be on £95 per week, but that is £95 a week that could be going towards better things. Again, I offered him to clubs for free, and somehow
several clubs were interested. Yet, instead of taking him off my hands now, they were all offering him pre-contracts, and he eventually signed a pre-contract deal with S.D. Logrones
, meaning I would be forced to keep him at my club for at least another 6 months. Urghhhh
Fode Mansare – Free Transfer
With the wage budget freed up with Allegre gone, and Jose Vega out until at least March
, I was in desperate need of a new left-winger. So, to me at least, Fode Mansare
seemed like the perfect man for the job. At just 31 he has a wealth of experience at the highest level; playing for several years in Ligue 1
. Having been out of the game for over a year, the man capped 44 times for Guinea asked for just £500 a week, and I duly agreed, leaving me with plenty of freed up cash to spend elsewhere.
Nahuel Menendez – Free Transfer
I chose to make my final signing a sort of one for the future
player. Argentinean teenager Nahuel Menendez
has already notched up 13 caps at the highest youth level for his country. With plenty of clubs interested in his services following his release from Sevilla Atletico
, I chose to launch a late bid for him, and, to my delight, he chose us. For now he will be backup at best, but with my staff convinced he will be a leading star for Liga Adelante sides in the future, I didn’t think twice about snapping him up.
And so, another transfer window was over. Again, my signings may not have looked the best, but I for one was pleased with them. It was time to get back to the pitch, for more inevitable nail-biting moments.
I could only hope that my new signings would help us achieve our ultimate goal – promotion.