Monday, 19 January 2015

Gomis leaving "a possibility"? Sell and rebuild

Frenchman's latest comments leave a lot to be desired

God only knows what was going through Bafetimbi Gomis' head when he signed for Swansea. I'm sure we didn't say anything misleading, and I struggle to believe that - as he's recently claimed - we made promises about the amount of game time he was to get. Bony was obviously number one, and while there was a big question mark over how long he'd remain at the Liberty the Frenchman can't possibly have thought he'd shift a guy scoring that many goals.

I can imagine the scene when we were trying to secure his signature. We were probably talking about development, growth and the direction of the club - Gomis clearly heard "you'll play every week over the most prolific striker in the Premier League right now" and "we're in the Champions League don't you know?". Perhaps the translator wasn't up to much, but either way it seems he's got a very strange attitude for someone who's only six months into a four year contract.

A quick word on the contract - I'd imagine Gomis is now the highest earner at the club. With Wilf's departure I can't imagine anyone is earning more than the former Lyon forward, which makes his wantaway antics all the more galling. He can say what he wants about the first half of the season, but he's obviously our number one striker for the foreseeable future and if he doesn't fancy it at this juncture then that, to me, is massively worrying.

If a player isn't willing to fight for his place in the team that's worrying enough. If a player isn't willing to take a nailed-on opportunity to become a first-team regular, whilst simultaneously telling anyone who'll listen that he's open to offers, then that's a player I don't want at my club. It'll take a seriously impressive change in attitude for him to win me over now, as this is something which has been going on a while. 

Again, how can he have expected to shift Bony? Yes, there was a chance he was to leave in the summer and I'm sure Gomis was hoping that would be the case - but this stuff about the Champions League? To me that's just disrespectful. If that's now what you want - six months after signing for a club who obviously weren't going to attain it - then why the hell did you sign in the first place? Was it perhaps that we were willing to give you a massive signing on bonus?

Here's Gomis latest comments, which came when speaking on French TV yesterday:

“When Bony was here, it was expected that I would also play in a certain number of games, but that was not the case. 
“I want to play in a certain number of matches. Today I ask myself many questions. I need time to reflect because what was said was not respected. At my age, it is difficult to spend my time sitting on the bench. 
“I have been approached by clubs. For the moment I am concentrating on Swansea. Me leaving? It is possible.

How can you say, in the same interview - "for now I am concentrating on Swansea - but it's possible I'll leave"? Seems a bit incongruous to me. 

This, added to his agent getting in the press over the last week claiming Schalke, Dortmund, Newcastle & Arsenal have all been in touch, isn't how you're supposed to do things. If he's planning on having talks with the Swans, perhaps he should have done that first before touting for a move in the press?

Sorry Bafi, you're not fooling anyone. To me it appears he thinks he made a mistake in coming to the Swans, and it's one he's working to rectify as quickly as he can. If the talk of offer of around £8million is true I'd be massively in favour of cashing in, and using the money to once again rebuild sensibly. 

Oliveira is a centre-forward, Barrow can operate there (and I'm very interested to see that happen) and I don't for a minute believe that Gomis' departure would damage our prospects this season in any kind of serious way. Sure there'd be a lot of adjustment, but there are plenty of options. We could even play Sigurdsson at "false 9" with Shelvey at attacking midfield - a bit 'out there' perhaps but I don't feel we'd be a significantly weaker team at all. 

The sad thing for me is that I was, genuinely, warming to Gomis game by game. It took him a while to win me over but he'd started to look very good, and against West Ham he had his best game in Swans shirt. He obviously has the talent to be very good for us up front, but barring a complete turnaround in his attitude I'm in favour of cashing in now and, if necessary, bringing someone else in on loan until the end of the season to give us another option in attack.

Hardline perhaps, but Swansea City is built on dedication, honesty and above all, a team ethic that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. If any part of the whole wants out there's a danger it could affect the rest of the team, and if we can cut this off at pass before it creates any further problems I say do it. We need players who want to be here, and who want to fight for their shirt. Bafetimbi Gomis doesn't seem to fall into either category.

One final note - Gomis' sale would mean we'd have raised well over £30million in just over a week or so. That can't be a bad thing, surely?