Us MFW folks thought this might be a good time to evaluate our summer signings and I drew the short straw…
To kick things off, Ibrahim Amadou and Sam Byram became Heroes, even just for one day. Any Bowie fans [I’m one too] can wait until the end of this article for a link* – I bet most of us have got it already anyway.
Injuries to Max Aarons and Christoph Zimmermann thrust them both into the Carra cauldron against, of all teams, Manchester City.
Both were exemplary, as was the entire Norwich City squad that unforgettable day.
Amadou was playing out of position at centre-back which wasn’t such an issue against Citeh, who are hardly lump-it-up merchants and he acquitted himself very well indeed
Byram was a revelation, fulfilling the Aarons role with tenacity and skill. Not much chance to overlap Emi in that game though so we don’t truly yet know what he can offer in the wing-back role.
They were both selected because of aforementioned injuries to Max and Zimbo, which simply goes to show how much Daniel Farke trusts the squad that got us so splendidly promoted.
So how have they fared since that glorious day?
Amadou is continuing as centre-back and is looking more vulnerable by the day. It’s not his natural position as both Burnley and now Palace have exposed. He gets drawn wide too easily but a midfielder would, wouldn’t he?
Get him in defensive midfield alongside Mo Leitner or Mario Vrancic pronto please, Herr Farke. Grant Hanley fills in at the back. Whatever your opinion of Hanley, we have literally nobody else.
I feel sorry for Byram. As soon as Max returns earlier than expected from injury he is binned off. A very hard call for Farke to make and I respect his decision but I would nevertheless question if it was the right one.
Farke’s faith in the squad that got us promoted is admirable.
Sure, we haven’t spent any money but we don’t want any more Naismiths, RvWs or Wildschutts, so I’m cool with that.
This policy has been forced on Daniel and it’s obvious he would have liked to splash a little cash [he’s said so himself], but his hands were tied, he accepted that and signed up for another three years. Good.
Ralf Fahrmann? Well, he’s played 23 Premier League minutes for us and fielding him against Palace looks like a mistake to me. A rumoured £2.7 million for a single loan season from Schalke. He’s been very unfortunate with a groin injury but seemed to be pushing Tim Krul, so we might yet get some value from him. I dunno to be honest.
Patrick Roberts must be wondering why he ever joined us. No game time, no chance to show what he might be able to contribute. A couple of Bhoys fans I know still love him and would have him back in a shot but he’s going nowhere with us at the moment.
Josip Drmic??? – So far he looks more akin to an Antoine Sibierski type signing to me. A bit cruel because he hardly features but I don’t see much there, I really don’t.
So it’s over to Farke and the old [not in years] promotion squad.
I have to say I’ve been more excited by the arrival of under-23 recruits such as Daniel Adshead from Rochdale than most of this lot. Senior signings in the summer? I’d rate the bunch as five out of ten collectively.
But thank the Lord we didn’t spend very much on them.
It’s still early days in the season, folks.
* Heroes is available here. I’m sure we’re gonna need some!