Domestic Transfer Deadline – Who’s on the move?
With the domestic transfer deadline looming this Friday, who could be on the move from Stoke City? An exit for Jack Butland? What about Tom Ince? Do we even begin to think about a Kevin Wimmer move?
The flurry of rumors peaked last week as it looked like Jack was on his way to Anfield. What a storybook ending that would have been for the England international. This move of course came as Reds keeper Allison went down with an injury combined with skeptical backup play from Adrian.
Unfortunately, this deal seems to have either fallen through, or was just more speculation than anything concrete to begin with. As Leigh Curtis noted in the Stoke Sentinal, Luis Enrique doesn’t see any deal looming for a new keeper for Liverpool and downplayed a Butland move to the club.
At this point, my take is that Butland stays with Stoke until the winter window opens or until the end of season. Realistically, Butland wants a chance at rebuilding his career, but has done little lately to justify a Premier League club taking a risk on him. If you are looking for a backup, why would you risk it with Butland who is coming off a dreadful season where he lost his starting job?
Unless Butland is okay with a move to another Championship side, he’ll most likely be staying with Stoke for the time being.
So far this season, Tom has only been a part of one match, where he was on the bench in Stoke’s opener against Millwall. It couldn’t be more clear that Ince is out of favor in terms of form and system fit. On top of this, new signing Jacob Brown can play right wing, striker, and right wing-back if needed, making him a much more versatile player for Michael O’Neill to include on a regular basis.
The only reason I think Stoke might want to keep Ince around is if they are having second thoughts about their five at the back formation. If at some point O’Neill is thinking about switching to a system with two wingers, Ince could be in line for more time. That being said, even as I’m typing this out, I can’t help but think that Campbell and Brown could be preferred there over Ince so even if a formation switch was imminent, playing time would not be guaranteed.
Bold prediction – a Championship club takes a shot on Ince by the end of the week. While he has not panned out at Stoke, Ince does have the potential to bring an offensive spark, and can also (at times) finish. It’s not out of the question for a club to take a risk on Ince who I’m sure would go at a discounted rate.
Kevin Wimmer on his way out?
Nope, he’s ours forever.