The Christmas Sale! Everything Must Go?
Feature by Footymad
Updated Sunday, 23rd December 2001
Somebody call the RSPCA! I've spotted several dozen vultures nestling in the Braemar Road stand in recent weeks. Alright, so they might not be of the feathered variety but they are all the same waiting for that last gasp of air before they go in for the kill.
Unfortunately for us, those gathering vultures very rarely miss a trick. They can smell blood a mile off and if one fails in their swoop then there are another dozen waiting in the wings ready to take the prey!
After all, Brentford's very own 'captain marvel' as they will very well know, is not only surpassing the form he displayed during the championship season but more worryingly for Brentford supporters will be out of contract come 2002 and become a free agent! The words BOSMAN start to make me shiver!
Following that Tranmere match Steve Coppell commented to the press in his post match interview that .....
"Paul wanted to win badly and you could see it in his performance. He hasn't won much in his career and I'm sure that he wants to change that."
You could almost hear the agents rubbing their hands with glee as they reached for their mobile phones!
Knowing Paul as I do, his ultimate aim in football will be to play the game at the very highest level and to represent his nation. Certainly his dream of pulling on the Red Dragon will only be realised if he can prove his worth at a level other than the Second Division.
Maybe it will be time to shake his hand and thank him for his services when the dreaded..... "I would love to achieve my aims with Brentford" creeps from his mouth. As we are all too aware, although not questioning the authenticity of such a statement and Paul's desire to succeed with Brentford, it rates alongside the dreaded vote of confidence handed out to under-fire managers before they're given the big 'thanks but no thanks' forty eight hours down the line.
Ron Noades has been reported to have been slowly re-discovering his hunger for Brentford since our up turn in fortunes this season. The next few months will be a realistic yardstick as to exactly how deep those hunger pains have grown and what he's prepared to do to keep them at bay!
The loss of Evans would be a massive body blow to Brentford Football Club especially at a time when the whole club is riding on the crest of such an optimistic wave!
I would personally rate such a loss on the same level as that of Andy Sinton to Queens Park Rangers back in 1989.
The Sinton blow, following our cup exit at Anfield, took me over a year to come to terms with. Another such body blow at such a crucial time of the season would certainly take more than the mandatory ten count to get me and the club back on our feet again.
Steve Coppell has probably one of his biggest challenges to date when he discusses Mr Evans' future with the chairman in the coming months. It will certainly stretch their relationship to breaking point as no doubt Steve will be aiming to structure the whole future of the club around that one name!
Brentford without Paul Evans at this moment in time doesn't bear thinking about. And please don't remind me of the other key players that will also be in the same boat as the season draws to a close next summer.
Surely It's only a matter of time before Mr Noades' phone starts ringing, and to be honest, with the position that Paul Evans is currently in, he holds all the aces when it comes to making what will be financially the biggest and most important decision of his career.
For us to hold onto that asset, at a time when we're supposed to be cost cutting and restructuring, will require Mr Noades to quite literally break the bank in order for the club to retain a player that could well determine the future direction of Brentford FC.
With the club in it's current financial predicament, whether that is an acceptable demand from the supporters only Ron Noades can answer!
Somehow I doubt whether we will be seeing too many more half-way line specials from Evans, well certainly not in a Brentford shirt anyway!
Maybe the only hope we've got is to convince Junior Noades to scrub the remote control car off his Christmas list and replace it with the initial P.E. - And I'm not talking about Private Education!
Other than that, maybe somebody will bring their shotgun down to Griffin Park and shoot those bloody damn vultures out of the stand!
Whatever the outcome, Paul Evans will go down as one of the clubs greatest ever captains. Whether he decides to cash in on the newly found Bosman ruling and leave Brentford is another matter, but one things for sure, nobody can deny that whatever he decides, there won't be a player on this planet that deserves it more than him.
Lets just hope I never have to say thanks for the memories!