This morning’s puzzle: name Kenwyne’s £40m day

Kenwyne CharicatureTransfer windows open out onto a heap of speculation, some of it fuelled by wily agents, some of it appearing to be evidence of – shall we say – the imaginative powers of football reporters. In one window, during Roy Keane’s time, only half a dozen or so of the scores of names in the Sunderland AFC official website’s “rumour mill”, culled from media reports, were remotely in the club’s sights, and several actual targets had not been mentioned at all. What, then, is the truth this time round? …

First, the papers said Steve Bruce was ready to sell Kenwyne Jones.

Then he appeared to heap scorn on the claims. Now, on one interpretation iof his latest remarks, he’s practically launched a public auction.

Salut! Sunderland, resisting some dissident opinion, is pro-Kenwyne.

He seems to us, that is Pete Sixsmith and me, to give Sunderland menace and power up front, height and presence at the back. He doesn’t score enough goals but, in the right strike partnership, will grab enough for himself and make more for his sidekick. We’d love that assessment to equal a Bent + Jones front pairing but – as Tom Lynn points out in a comment below – that would require infinitely better support from midfield than has been provided so far this season. Bent’s vital goals have come despite the quality of service, not because of it.

If he goes, as we have also said, it must be on the strict understanding that we have as good or better coming into a squad that is thin on proven striking talent.

So over to Steve: “One game he looks like a £40m player and another day you think, ‘Come on’.”

This prompted an impertinent TalkSport presenter to invite answers from listeners as to which day Steve might have had in mind.

But it does look as if Steve is at least open to prospect of losing Kenwyne, “mind-blowing” though he says the fee would have to be and though, in fairness, he was in essence repeating something Roy Keane had also said about the player’s value.

That makes two managers out of the last three at Sunderland to rate him albeit only at times, among the best in the world. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the second of those bosses, Steve Bruce, proved to be the man who was able to turn all that potential into, well, mind-blowing performances week after week? For Sunderland.


Colin Randall


* Thanks to A Love Supreme for permission to use the image.

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Salut! Sunderland is written, illustrated and edited by - and principally for - supporters of Sunderland AFC. The site aims to be sufficiently literate and entertaining to appeal to people who do not follow SAFC but enjoy good football writing.

6 Responses to “This morning’s puzzle: name Kenwyne’s £40m day” Subscribe

  1. Tom Lynn January 12, 2010 at 11:38 am #

    The time to judge Kenwyne properly is when we have quality wingers in the side with genuine pace to provide crosses from the by-line with the front two facing goal, something Sunderland have lacked for ages. Both Jones and Darren Bent would benefit. However, we should still be looking to bring in another international class striker in to provide competition-nothing improves a players focus like competition..or a new contract! Jones is clearly a source of frustration to club management and fans alike, but to be fair to the lad he has had to feed on scraps for much of recent seasons. Bent has been superb on limited service this season, bring in some pace and innovation on the flanks and the pair of them should thrive.

  2. salutsunderland January 12, 2010 at 12:15 pm #

    I entirely agree Tom. It would be terrific if those quality wingers were wingbacks, able to defend rather more confidently than we do at present and then get forward to put in the crosses DB and KJ desperately need. Even better might be the sort of Gray-Johnston partnership down the left that we dreamed of but never saw in the Premier.

  3. Bill Taylor January 12, 2010 at 2:28 pm #

    Selling KW, for no matter how outrageous a fee, would smack of a panic reaction on Bruce’s part. He really needs to treat the cause, not the symptom.
    There’s been an ongoing academic study into the proven beneficial effects of long-term stability within a team, rather than a revolving door of superstars. It was first reported, I believe, by the Guardian nine years ago. The researchers have a new report out. This is the only link I can find but it makes interesting reading:

    http://miller-mccune.com/culture_society/memo-to-coach-stick-with-what-you-ve-got-1702

  4. Bill Taylor January 12, 2010 at 2:29 pm #

    I meant, of course, KJ, not KW.

  5. Yiannis Skindilias January 12, 2010 at 5:57 pm #

    Since the question actually is “in which game did KJ actually look like he cost 40 million quid?” i’ll be brave and try to give an answer. I suppose it was the arsenal 3 vs sunderland 2 match, more or less 2 years ago. Don’t take me wrong, i like kenwyne but since the injury he has only got one or two games close to that.
    To bring it all to a conclusion, i honestly believe andy reid and ricco are much better players than Ross Wallace, but he was a -so called- out n out winger, KR and AR are mostly attacking midfielders.
    To do the lad a bit of justice though, i ‘d like to remind people that KJ substitutions have meant conceiding goals in the dying seconds e.g. Saha’s goal at old trafford and one or two incidents since… (one of the blue teams that i can’t recall).
    Concluding, KJ has nothing to prove since.. in other words he lacks motivation on the odd occasion. I honestly don’t think it ‘s the managers fault though, as far as man handling is concerned, but if he doesn’t have to compete and can’t do his weird goal celebrations once in a while.. yes, he will be bored.

  6. Kevin Bell January 12, 2010 at 9:52 pm #

    £40M? The amount he is over valued by!
    I can only recall a handful of games in which he has applied himself and proven what an exceptional player he could be. Yes could be! More often than not he is just plain lazy.
    Whilst I do sympathise with Jones (and Bent) because of our style of play and the distinct lack of quality crosses he needs to perform week in week out to justify a £10M tag let alone the £40m one.

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