George Dobson:a great photo, reproduced with the kind permission of safc.com

Monsieur Salut writes: at around 8pm, I switched on my phone after landing at Stansted, noticed the signing of George Dobson had been announced and prepared to write our usual welcoming piece on the train into London. Fat chance. The sun had come out and there were no trains. Nor any notice to that effect obviously visible in arrivals so passengers had to traipse all the way down to the platform only to be sent back to the terminal to queue for National Express tickets and then traipse one floor back down to locate the coach station. It was a grim ride into the capital. Probably unfair to blame Brexit but I’ll doubtless find a way. But here’s the delayed welcome …

The term “undisclosed fee” seems among the most moronic in football. That is what we have paid Walsall for George Dobson, according to both clubs.

So everyone sooner or later speculates (or gets a reliable steer). The Northern Echo apparently suggested that Walsall wanted £2m and we know, or believe, Sunderland’s initial bid was turned down flat where the improved offer was readily accepted.

Make of that what you will. If the true figure is a lot less, or more, than that, and the truth actually matters to anyone, the clubs will have only themselves to blame.

All that said, it appears a good acquisition. And with not the least disrespect to the people who arrived on frees or as free agents, there is something comforting about wanting a player enough to pay a proper League One sort of sum. for him.

He’s 6ft 1in, a central midfielder aged just 21 and emerged from the Arsenal and West Ham schoolboy and youth schemes. We needed height in that area and the obvious question that arises is which of the many players now jostling for position in that general area will now be sold or allowed otherwise to leave.

Reportiong on the three-year deal, safc.com says Dobson’s experience also
includes a six-month spell in the Eredivisie with Sparta Rotterdam. Jack Ross believes he has always demonstrated quality, maturity and leadership.

“After returning to Walsall, Dobson made a further 65 appearances in all competitions for Dean Keates’s side, while also regularly captaining the club during the 2018-19 campaign,” says the club site.

Dobson himself said:

‘It’s been a long few weeks, so to finally get the deal done is a dream come true. I played in the same league last year, but the difference in facilities is frightening, so the opportunity to use them every day to improve my game is something I’m really looking forward to. I always play with pride and passion, and I can’t wait to get started.’

A warm welcome from Salut! Sunderland, George, whatever we’ve paid for you …

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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.

10 Responses to “Salut! Sunderland’s welcome to George Dobson – a big midfielder and what’s more, we paid for him” Subscribe

  1. Tom July 26, 2019 at 7:00 am #

    Yes, M’sieur, when we finally leave the EU maybe the ‘undisclosed fee’ will disappear alongside the rest of their unwanted bureaucracy!

    • salutsunderland July 26, 2019 at 8:31 am #

      The undisclosed fee for leaving will include some add-ons you weren’t bargaining for but everyone knows will happen. But who needs pesky jobs anyway?

  2. malcolm July 26, 2019 at 8:24 am #

    McGeouch has signed an extension to his contract and appears to be in the manager’s plans. Ross has suggested O’Nien will be utilised higher up the pitch than last season. Robson and Embleton are back at the club and have committed their immediate futures to the cause. Power and Leadbitter are both January signings (though Power’s signing was a technicality) and Honeyman has been made captain again.

    Having had too many similar players in midfield last season we seem to have even more to choose from, though with a greater variety of strengths, physicality and abilities. I can’t help wondering where Watmore, Gooch and Maguire will fit in with the manager’s plans.

    Last season we played some of our best football early in the season when injuries and lack of bodies seemed to dictate team selection. Gooch did OK as a wing back and when we played with that lopsided back 4 and only Maja as a recognised striker we seemed more threatening than we were later in the season.

    I’ll wait until I’ve seen them a few times before I pass comment on the four outfield players we have brought in but it would appear that JR has the personnel to set the team up to play in a variety of styles and hopefully this will mean we can find ways of breaking down the opposition however they play and have options to find a plan B and C if needed during a game.

    Perhaps tomorrow will give us some clues.

  3. Vincent July 26, 2019 at 10:24 am #

    Undisclosed means to me we got shafted…as usual. I think our ambition always exceeds our prudence. Ellis certainly wasted a few bob,but at least we are now only talking low millions not tens of millions.

    • malcolm July 26, 2019 at 1:39 pm #

      Elsewhere people are suggesting the fee was only £100K. If that figure is anywhere near the mark it would be in Walsall’s interest to keep the amount private.

  4. John July 26, 2019 at 6:27 pm #

    talk to boris about kippers and find out what needless bureacracy is all about. sound’s like you are following the clown.

    • salutsunderland July 26, 2019 at 7:11 pm #

      Boris and the truth are strangers. But in his spirit of unity – by which he means bringing together all the warring Brexit hordes – why hasn’t he made Tommy Robinson Justice Secretary or put Rees Mogg in charge of finding those elusive trade deals (Mesopotamia, Cathay, Abyssinia ?) to replace all we’ll lose?

      • malcolm July 27, 2019 at 8:17 am #

        And here’s me thinking this was a football related website.

        • Salutsunderland July 27, 2019 at 2:12 pm #

          Coming soon. A Salut! Sunderland compilation of political references from Sixer’s Soapbox and other Sixer postings. A slim volume for sure but we may get it up to 100 pages if we choose our font wisely…

  5. WG in Big D July 26, 2019 at 6:38 pm #

    Needy, demanding, and impossible to please. That’s the triad indicating you have a really bad partner, and, also, seems to be the three adjectives that can most be applied to footie supporters.

    A 21 years old, 6’1″ midfielder that can also shift to cb who has captained a League One squad and is considered to be Championship quality? Isn’t that what most people have been asking for as an addition to midfield?

    Hopefully Gooch can be an asset as a LWB, because the that’s the last place the team seems thin. I know there are many who will disagree with me, but, questions about quality aside, the quantity is there.

    There are still loans from teams higher up the pyramid(s). Getting a Tammy Abraham, instead of the usual academy products, is in the realm of possibilities. Remember Danny Rose.

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