Love it or hate it the final day of the transfer window once again got us scrambling to our refresh buttons, clicking on our televisions and nervously tuning in for any breaking news. It is one of the most tense and dramatic days of the year.
The reality is though nothing much happened.
Harry Redknapp was linked with pretty much everyone under the sun. Pompey looked to buy a squad back to make up for the one they have sold over the past 18 months, two people called Collins moved somewhere between Stoke, Sunderland and Villa and Everton signed Johnny Heitinga; which should upset the Premier league odds.
But that didn’t stop Sky Sports News criss-crossing the country bringing all the latest breaking transfer news: “I can confirm David Bentley is not going to Man City,” well thanks for that.
The channel really comes into its own when genuine news stories break. The 24 hour rolling news channel has become a symbol of today’s instant demand for news, providing viewers with the stories as they happen. Last year’s transfer window was an example of that when City were taken over, bid for about five different players and splashed out £30 million on Robinho, all in 24 extraordinary hours.
But when there isn’t a lot happening the channel’s attempts to hype up hot air really begins to grate. Jim White is the chief culprit; he could make boiling an egg sound exciting.
“Dharmesh Sheth I understand you have moved from Portsmouth’s training ground to Fratton Park, what is that the significance of that?”
“Nothing Jim it is just sunnier here that’s all.”
All the hype was there. Andy Burton was on set with his phones, David Craig’s mobile kept disrupting his \’North East’ updates while Vinny O’Connor was mobbed by Everton fans outside the club’s training ground. A new graphic introduced was the transfer fee ticker, like some sort of charity fundraiser, clocking up thetotal transfer fees spent this summer (most of it by City). The whole day was capped off by the chimes of Big Ben, ending all the chaos.
Why the moan you may ask?
Because as trashy as it was I couldn’t switch it off!
I was transfixed at the TV, waiting for the deals to come through.
The same reason we keep going to the games. The same reason we renew our season ticket even after a poor year: Hope.
Hope that things will get better is the staple diet of the English football fan. Sky Sports increase that hope by fogging the lines between rumour and reality. We don’t know what is true and what isn’t, but as long as we tune in they don’t care.
And to be honest as much as we whinge and moan, we don’t care either.