Yesterday saw Wes McDonald sign a new 18 month deal, much to every fans joy. Does this show a change within the club?
All too often we have seen players come and go, and reject new contracts to move on to perceived ‘better deals’. However Wes staying shows that maybe, Walsall is becoming a desirable place to play football once again.
We all saw Jack Fitzwater’s quotes about last season, and many of us have heard of rifts within the club. But with the club very much ‘under new managment’, and a recent upturn in form, along with a player we all suspected could move on actually staying, it seems that these rifts are a distant memory, and that the black cloud that hung over the club of last season could have been lifted.
Wes signing is a huge thing, not only for the playing side, but for the club itself. We have always been a feeder club, with players coming here as a way to develop and work their way up, but now we have a player on our hands that wants to stay and develop further. It sends a message to the fans that DC and Leigh Pomlett are clearly doing the right thing by the players, and offering competitive deals, and that the players have faith in the management and the club itself.
I also think that the club may have smartened up with their wage budget. Offering short deals to players who are unproven means that if it doesn’t work out, the wages can be freed up. We have seen Luke Little and Jack Kiersey depart the club after unsuccessful spells. Both players wont have commanded large wages, but what they were getting paid, is now back in DC’s budget for January. The worry is that with these short-term deals, we are open to losing players, like we worried would happen with Wes. But if DC and the board know that if they work out, they can entice players to stay, then it means we could see more of these players come in.
I am very happy that Wes has decided to stay, he is quality player for this league, and he will continue to develop. I am also glad to see that players want to stay at the club. Who knows, we may actually see a good, talented core of a team carried over at the end of a season for the first time since a certain Mr Dean Smith.