Who is Adam Forshaw?

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And why is he upsetting people. I’d not heard of him until a week or so ago. Apparently, he’s worth £11m though. For a player who is on paper at this current stage, a League One player. The way that Bees fans are talking about him he must be the Scouse Pirlo or summat, the fact of the matter is that he is still relatively unknown.

 

The amount of whining coming from a little corner of West London that our supposed bid for him has caused can be heard all the way up the M6.

 

We made a bid for your player and you don’t like it. So reject it then and pipe down.

 

Why go crying to the media about it?

 

Listen, I like Brentford – fond memories of the FRT final and trips to Griffin Park in the 80’s.

 

However, in the off chance their deluded management are reading this – I think there’s something that you need to know: The game has changed a little bit over the past decade or two (and yes, not for the better)

 

We, as Wigan Athletic, know this after having to spend every single day for eight years on the end of the media and agents muck raking over our players and rival clubs making derisory bids. The minute one of them has a decent game they’re effectively sold. We must have received hundreds of bids for our players over the years and don’t go around making them public or losing the plot over it.

 

Of course Whelan is no shrinking violet and often wades in once a bid has been accepted (who could forget that time Birmingham – yes Birmingham – tried to sign Charles N’Zogbia?) but he is generally respected in his business conduct – well in football at least he is perceived as being a good chairman, albeit he needs to shut up sometimes.

 

Yet I fail to see what Wigan Athletic have done wrong here, our club is merely doing what we have frequently been on the receiving end of many, many times over.

 

It seems Rosler is getting stick as well. He used to be your manager – so presumably whatever tactics he employs now are very little different to what he did then when presumably you weren’t calling him names on the internet. Suggesting he’d ring up a local paper and get them to whip up a bit of mischief against their local football team is the realms of fantasy but even so – you want to try fending off the sort of propaganda laden drivel that the North East press used to write about us when our players were being linked with their clubs.

 

Everything about Rosler points to a decent and honourable fellow and that’s not going to change just because he left your club.

 

He’s German for God’s sake, they never do anything wrong. Except Hitler obviously. But we’ll gloss over that.

 

There’s an interesting quote from the Brentford chairman Cliff Crown on Twitter – you know from this club who have already had a go at Wigan Athletic for “making things public”. Just saying….

 

He has stated that it’s yet another example of a playing field that isn’t level and that Wigan have EPL parachute payments to help fund moves like this.

 

So let me get this straight: let’s say Brentford get promoted this year and end up in the Premier League. Let’s say like Wigan Athletic they survive for eight years despite continually having to sell their best players and buying unknown youngsters and unproven foreigners to replace them because the influx of foreigners elsewhere have risen the standard so high it makes it practically impossible for young home grown talent to get a look in. So they have to survive by having to deal with agents who know exactly how much money is coming in via the TV deal and seek to maximise their earnings and trouser away as much of that money as is humanly possible for them and their players.

 

Now, let’s say in this hypothetical situation, they eventually get relegated – I presume that in the interests of his  “level playing field”, Cliff Crown will then be turning around and saying “no thanks I don’t want those parachute payments – it’s not fair on all the other clubs. I’ll cover the £40m drop in income myself”

 

Would you Cliff? Would you be an honourable man and do that for us all?

 

Would you b*****ks!

 

Oh and by the way we also sold £20m of players this time last year – is that unfair as well Cliff? Should we have given James McCarthy away for free because other clubs in the division didn’t have a young asset like that to sell?

 

We’ve earned those parachute payments through having to throw good money after bad, tens of millions of pounds of it a year merely to survive in the Premier League and that’s with one of  the consistently smallest wage bills in the top flight, quite why we’re being compared to Fulham is beyond me.

 

We’d all like to see the back of parachute payments but you’d also quickly see the back of a hell of a lot of football clubs. Stop the parachute payments by all means – but you’re going to have to stop the Premier League clubs throwing billions of pounds around first.

 

Off the back of this, we’ve got Brentford fans abusing Wigan Athletic and Wigan fans on social media. One called us an “irrelevant little club”. Well come back when you’ve climbed through all four divisions from the non leagues, done eight years in the top flight and won an FA Cup – I’m sure you’d swap that irrelevant history for whatever Brentford have achieved in the past few decades.

 

Personally, I don’t care if we get this lad or not. From what I’ve read in the last few days, he seems a very decent prospect but I wouldn’t advocate spending more than a couple of million on him because he is a) unproven and b) we have other areas we perhaps need to strengthen using our finite resources.

 

Despite all this, I sympathise with Brentford but don’t blame our club, blame the system. The system is bust.

 

The one thing all this shows is that football fans cannot behave rationally. The way some football clubs are reacting (board members let alone fans) – it’s like the transfer market was invented yesterday.

 

I’m sure I will get accused of arrogance with this piece – but I’m not being arrogant I’m being logical.

 

Wigan Athletic and Brentford are very similar clubs. We’ve just had very different recent history. And with football being dictated by money now it puts us in a very different position.

 

So final scenario, let’s just say we were in the opposite position: Brentford had dropped down to the Championship after 8 eight years in the top flight, having to offloads millions of pounds in players and slash the wage bill, Wigan Athletic finally getting out of the lower leagues after building a squad with decent young players.

 

Let’s say Brentford tried to sign our best player – what would they do? Would they offer Wigan Athletic £11m quid for him? Purely because they should do because they’ve got parachute payments burning a big hole in their big pockets (unless their chairman has decided he’s not a hypocrite and refuses them)

 

Would they balls.

 

There endeth the case for the defence.

 

And as I said, I like Brentford – I admire what they are trying to build. And I completely understand the reaction – that when you’re trying to build something, you get protective of it. But you can’t build in football any more: it’s just a money market now which trades tattooed simpletons wearing neon boots.

 

There’s only two clubs left in the world who can build a successful team and they both play in Spain and have more money than anyone, everyone else is left fighting over the scraps and turning on each other.

 

So give us a break eh?

 

It wasn’t too far back that Wigan Athletic sold a whole squad of homegrown players for a knock down price: Atherton, Parkinson, Lowe, Butler, Newell, Jewell, Aspinall I could go on. I doubt we got a million quid for the lot. We’ve only changed that because we’ve had to. We’ve toughened up. It’s about time everyone else did instead of getting upset and going public about this kind of stuff throwing dummies around social media sites.

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