I’m sure I’m not the only Pompey fan that was more than a little upset that Benjani was suddenly sent packing at the transfer deadline.
However, while it’s true that EPL football is above all a business, the Premier League’s refusal to make a final decision today as to whether his transfer is either valid or void is completely bush league. Without claiming to understand the porous details of what legally makes a transfer valid or invalid, it seems to me that the whole point of having a deadline for transfers is that it be respected. If documents A, B, & C need be signed sealed and delivered before midnight in order for a transfer to be valid, then anything less than A, B, & C, should logically mean that the transfer is voided.
Why should it take “until some time next week” for everyone to know where they stand? The only possible reason is that Premier League officials plan to use a criteria for examining the deal that is extraordinary and that exposes the entire process to scrutiny and scepticism.
What hangs in the balance until then are potentially crucial points which could be gained/lost by either Pompey or Man City in their drives for European spots. More importantly, a Zimbabwean football player who has sincerely given his all to his team and their fans since arriving in England is left in a humiliating purgatory.
If the EPL says no to the transfer next week, he will have to come back to a club and manager who have made it clear that he is considered expendable. If the deal goes ahead, then he will question as to whether the club he is to play for really wanted him after all.
Would the Premier League head office have humiliated a high profile English player, say an Ashley Cole or Frank Lampard in such a cruel and demeaning manner by leaving him so hanging? I sincerely doubt it.
There are many who need to apologize to Benjani for this incident, for the good of the English game, yet I doubt any of the suits will be gracious enough to do so, so I’ll apologize to him on behalf of all of the Fratton faithful who admire and respect him as one of us. Thanks a bunch Benji and you’ll always get a cheer from us, whomever you play for.
Written by Toronto4Pomey.
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