It could be a busy transfer window for the caretaker manager this January – here are some topics that the club will need to consider over the coming weeks.
Which players should be released?
With so many players on long-term contracts some will only move if other clubs show an interest…
The Valiants are desperate to trim a bloated squad, not only to reduce the wage bill but also to free up money for new additions. However, presuming there are no “release” clauses then with many players on long-term contracts some will only move if other clubs show an interest. It could make freeing up players difficult but there are at least a few players who will it be easier to move on. Ryan Lloyd has been a success at Chester and seems out of favour at Vale so a permanent move could be in the offing. Meanwhile, Nathan Ferguson and Sam Johnson are both out of the first-team picture and out of contract in the summer – it is likely the club may settle up their contracts early in January.
Which players should join?
The absolute priority in this area would be to secure Alex Jones until the end of the season. Luckily the signs look promising with Birmingham City indicating that Jones could have his loan extended. It is difficult to predict who else will join but following the end of Martin Paterson’s disappointing spell and Anton Forrester’s continuing injury issues, forwards will be a priority.
Which players may be sold?
Vale will be hoping that if there is any interest in star trio Jak Alnwick, Nathan Smith and Remie Streete then at least the transfer fee involved will be a considerable one (however, that may not be the case if there was interest in Remie Streete – see our next point). From a supporters’ point of view, it would be better if all three stay till the summer when hopefully the club will still be in League One.
Any other business
It means that should a bigger club show interest any fee could be decided by a tribunal and Vale will only get a fraction of what Streete is worth…
OVF led the call for the club to offer Remie Streete a new contract back in September. That was months ago. The defender has arguably been the player of the year so far and unlike his fellow youngsters Alnwick and Smith he does not have a long-term contract. It means that should a bigger club show interest any fee could be decided by a tribunal and Vale will only get a fraction of what Streete is worth. Yes, the defender may not want to commit but Vale have to at least ask about the possibility. So far, Streete has said there hasn’t even been no contract discussions and that seems ridiculous when it involves the side’s best player.
Finally there’s somethat that Michael Brown himself cannot control and that’s the business of the manager himself. Will Brown be given an extended run as caretaker with a chance to take the reigns on a permanent basis? With the transfer window now open that does appear to be the likely option but Vale could still opt for a new face to lead the team. If they do – who will it be? It’s sure to be a busy January for the Valiants.
Have your say
We reckon there’s lot more that you can add to our list of priorities. So, what have we got wrong or what have we missed? Share your thoughts on this dedicated forum thread