Transfer Policy Myth

Mr Geo Challenge once again takes on the controversial issues. In this piece he attempts to explode the myth about our transfer policy

On the transfer page I suggested a view that, despite what many of our fans think, Forest's transfer policy isn't really as shoddy as everyone makes out. I intend to show that Forest do actually spend alot of money in the circumstances.

What circumstances do I refer to? If you look at the wider picture of transfer spending in this country, it's clear to anyone with a brain that fees are spiralling out of control. Just about every club in the country are millions and millions of pounds in debt, and many are gambling with their future in the hope of spending their way to success and security - especially at our level. Do any of you want Forest to gamble? Money spent does not equal success.

Another consideration before I look at what money we've actually spent over the past few years:

“UEFA’s financial fair play policy is going to be coming in in two years’ time under a ‘soft rule’ before sanctions will apply in 3 years’ time. We as a club have to get ourselves ready for that.” Mark Arthur 2011

Do you want Forest to plan for the future, or do you want Forest to face up to this important rule change suddenly in two short years time?

I suggest Forest are not a big enough club to spend blindly in the current climate. Anyone who thinks we're too big to go out of business are living in cloud cuckoo land. We are operating at significant losses at he moment, only saved with the support of ND. Now, onto our transfer incomings. I know I've missed one or two, please point out this, or any other errors.

Chambers - Undisclosed.
Cohen & Davies - £1,200,000
Earnshaw - £2,650,000
Wilson - £300,000
Lennon - Free.
£4,100,000 (plus whatever we paid for Luke Chambers, plus signing on fees, which I'd suggest would be substantial for high profile players such as Earnshaw, and Lennon, who to make it even higher, was on a FT. I'd speculate we spent in excess of five million on transfers that year, but don't know).

G-Mac - £30,000
Moussi - £300,000
Garner £1,140,000
Cole - Free
Martin - Loan
Total - £1,470,000 (plus whatever we paid for Moussi & G-Mac, plus signing on and loan fees. Again, Cole didn't come here for peanuts, but I wouldn't even like to guess how much we paid him).

Blackstock - Undisclosed "seven figure amount". For the sake of arguement, £1,000,000
Camp - £100,000
Anderson - £250,000
McGoldrick £1,000,000
McKenna - £750,000
Adebola - Free
Gunter - £1,750,000
Lynch - £200,000
Majewski - £1,000,000
Shorey - Loan
McSheffrey - Loan
Total - £6,050,000 (plus signing on fees, plus loan fees & wages, add into account I've been super cautious with Blackstock's fee. I wouldn't be surprised were out transfer spending not nearer the seven million bracket).

Tudgay - £500,000
Findley - Free
Bertrand - Loan
G. Boyd - Loan
Ramsey - Loan
Total - £500,000 (plus signing on fees & loan fees/wages).

Reidy - Free
Greening - Undisclosed, believed to be £600,000.
K. Boyd - Loan
Konchesky - Loan
Total - possibly £600,000 (plus signing on fees, loan fees & wages).

Total over the last 5 years:
Transfer fees - £12,740,000 on fees (conservative estimate).
Signing on fees - Dread to think, but we've had some top profile players here. Cole, Lennon & Reid would have been expensive, unless they came here for the love of Forest?
Loan fees - We've relied heavily on a series of high profile, big name loanees such as former England men Shorey, Konchesky, s well as Bertrand, Ramsey, Boyd et al. Alot of our loans have been from Premiership clubs, there would have been fees involved, as well as us paying some or all of their wages. Not cheap at all.

Analysis: Over the past 5 years we have spend an average of £2,500,000 per year on transfer fees (conservative estimate). For a top club this is a pittance. For a slightly above average second division team, I'd suggest this is quite a heavy outlay when coupled with the signing on fees, loan fees, wages of our squad and the loanees, the fact we don't sell our best players, and the recent multi-million pound re-build of our Wilford Lane training facility. Forest are clearly frugal with their money, but in times like these who can blame them? It's all very well us fans spending the money for them in our heads, but we don't have to deal with the consequences in our heads. Spending money, just like in real life, has consequences.

Michael123 inadvertently hit the crux of this issue on the transfer thread, stating "which for a club of our size when our rivals are spending so much more" when referring to our apparently small spending. The issue is twofold:

"club of our size"... we are not a big club, history has proven we are now at our true level. We don't have enough fans to propel us into Europe any more, our major successes in the past have been down to one genius manager and will never be repeated I'm afraid.

"our rivals are spending so much" because they have rich sugar daddies using them as a plaything, and when they get bored they may well drop their toy (in the $hit) and go elsewhere. We cannot hope to compete with the spending of Leicester & Cardiff et al. They are recklessly gambling with their clubs future, I'm glad Forest don't - I don't want the slightest chance of Forest going bankrupt. I go to most games - I don't want to find myself stood on a rainy tuesday evening watching a bankrupt Forest team playing Stalybidge Celtic, whilst ground sharing with Ilkeston town or some other local team. I'm glad we look after our future. Some of our fans seem to think we ought to be spending big and challenging for European honours once again - the Stalybridge Celtic scenario is far more likely.

We are running at a loss, yet still spending well over £2.5 million per year on transfers alone. How many other clubs in our position are doing this? I've not checked this out, but I don't think there are many.

Counter-arguements welcome & please point out any errors, not in it to win an argument, in it to get to the bottom of this very subjective issue. Data taken from Soccerbase & Wikipedia, and this site.