Monday, August 24, 2009

Let's talk about money

Money. Makes the world go round apparently. And makes footballers go weak at the knees. Not weak enough that they can’t run into the arms of whichever millionaire club owner has arrived at their door with a wheelbarrow full of used notes though.

But. Money’s not everything. I know it’s a short career. I know you could get injured tomorrow and never kick another ball. I know all that.

The thing very few footballers ever seem to grasp is that the grass is not always greener.

Money talks. And at the moment it seems to be calling a number of SPL players to the lower leagues in England.

Colin Nish from Hibs is the latest to be linked with a move, with talk of him linking up with his erstwhile captain Rob Jones in what’s looking like a Championship relegation scrap with Scunthorpe.

Now Colin Nish currently plays for the team he supported as a kid. We all had dreams on the playing fields of our childhoods. Colin Nish has worked hard, succeeded and his dreams have come true. What’s more he earns a decent wage and gets to live in Edinburgh, a city with a world wide reputation.

Is Scunthorpe really worth trading that in for?

Danny Cadamarteri, Nicky Weaver, Kevin Kyle, Anthony Stokes. Just a few of the players who’ve decided that life in the SPL is better than life in the lower reaches of English football. It’s not all glitter, wags and cash down south.

We’re down on Scottish football at the moment. Useless in Europe. Scotland struggling. The game run by numpties. There’s a lot to be down about.

But we’re also home to some decent coaches, passionate fans, improving facilities. Some of the football’s not great but some of it is genuinely exciting, honest, fast, furious. We’re not a nation of trumpet blowers but we should at least move away from the almost suicidal depression that’s been surrounding us.

Kevin Kyle is on the verge of a Scotland recall.

I can’t quite believe I’ve written that. But would he have been in that position if he’d stayed down south?

Is Colin Nish not guaranteed to begin a long descent into obscurity the minute he signs for Scunthorpe?

Go south. Go west. But remember for every Alan Hutton there’s a couple of Michael Stewarts. For every Scott Brown there’s a Derek Riordan or an Alan Gow.

I suppose players will always be blinded by money. There’s very little we can do about that.

But we can at least accentuate the positives. We’re not world beaters, our top flight is not a top league. But it’s not all bad. Some players are beginning to realise that, are beginning to base their transfer descisions on factors other than simple, hard cash.

Let’s hope that trend is here to stay.