This week Norman Smurthwaite outlined a new transfer approach for the club and it appears that one of the first signings could be on their way. OVF examines a potential Vale transfer revoltion.
Chairman Norman Smurthwaite tweeted that:
The tweets suggest that Smurthwaite is set to add another signing to the club and one that will be probably be in line with the new approach that he outlined last week.
So what’s the change in policy?
During press conferences and radio interviews, Smurthwaite said that he wanted the club to focus on youth (or perhaps more accurately emerging talent) in the way that the likes of Peterborough United have done.
He confirmed that this wouldn’t mean a focus on improving Vale’s academy status (as that is a “ten year plan” according to the Chairman) but rather a transfer strategy that aims to develop and sell on players for a profit – something that arguably the club has been unable to do since the days of John Rudge.
According to Smurthwaite, the signing of French striker Achille Campion was the first player to be brought in under this new strategy.
It’s a highly desirable strategy on paper but perhaps more difficult to pull off in reality. Vale have lost chief scout George Foster in the summer. Foster was widely credited with the discovery of Jordan Hugill who, if he had been persuaded to stay, could have been a potential future asset for the club.
Smurthwaite says that he is personally doing some scouting this week. We hope the Twitter comments were somewhat tongue in cheek because although many of us fans think we know as much as the football scouts, we often don’t.
If this policy is to work, and we hope it does, we hope that any signings come via the input of both the chairman and an experienced scout.