Often Partisan

The Transfer of Ben Foster

Roy Hodgson has told Blues that he wants them to make a quick decision on the availability of Ben Foster for permanent transfer. Whilst the Baggies took the keeper on loan for the duration of this season, nothing was set up with regards to a permanent deal, and it’s been said all season that Blues had to be a division below the Baggies for them to consider selling Foster.

I have to admit it’s kinda ironic that Hodgson has been so vocal in his pursuit of the transfer of Foster, as Roy himself hasn’t committed to Albion beyond this summer. If the manager can’t commit to the team for the next season, isn’t it some brass neck to push for Blues to make a decision quicker than originally planned?

Getting past the politics of it all, I guess the big question is “Should Blues sell Foster?” It’s a two-part answer, in truth – if Blues don’t go up then there will be no choice, Fozzy will not want to play in the Championship and Blues will need the cash. However, if Blues do return to the top flight then that goes out the window and it comes down to having the player or the cash.

One good reason to sell is the emergence of Jack Butland. Butland, who is currently on loan at Cheltenham hasn’t made an appearance for Blues yet but there is the possibility he’ll be ready for the number one shirt whichever division Blues are in next season. Butland is currently the number one choice for the England u21 goalkeeper shirt; there is no doubt in my mind that Butland will also be named as first choice keeper for the GB Olympic team as well. Thus the question would have to be would it be worth keeping Foster when we could cash in on him and keep a highly rated young keeper we’ve brought through the ranks ourselves.

One stumbling block in the sale of Foster would be his well-known reluctance to move from the Midlands. If Albion were put off from the sale of Foster for any reason, it shrinks the number of clubs that I think Fozzy would go to considerably. I can’t imagine Ben would cross the expressway to fight for a shirt with Shay Given; Wolves are as good as down by the looks of things which then means Foster would either have to move house or commute some distance to get a move to another club – which would increase his reluctance to go and potentially drop his price.

Whatever happens, I think Blues are well within their rights to tell the Albion to put up or shut up. If the Albion are desperate to keep Foster then they should show Blues the colour of their money with a proper official bid rather than making inflammatory comments in the press. I’m not a fan of transfers being conducted this way personally, and judging by the way Blues have acted over transfers of players like Ridgewell (ie not commenting about anything in the press) I suspect that the club feels the same way. I hope that Blues can play hardball long enough to ensure that they get the money that Foster is worth from whichever club buys him.

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14 Responses to “The Transfer of Ben Foster”

  • Blue in Spain says:

    Hodgson is a disgrace, he has constantly undermined Blues by using the media to get our players on the cheap. I really hope another premier league team comes in to push up the price.

  • jo says:

    Could we even sell him at the moment with this transfer embargo in place? Or does that only affect incoming?

  • Bluehobba says:

    Make them wait, He’s our player not theirs. Here’s the question – which goalkeepers do we want for whichever division we are in next season, Foster, Butland, Doyle or Myhill. Myhill is not our player but will probably be surplus to requirements at the albion or playing second fiddle and hasn’t had a bad season with us. Doyle is out of contract in the summer and apart from one clanger in europe, has done well for us in the cups and when called upon. As you say Butland hasn’t played yet and is chomping at the bit and has a big future and Foster is the trump card. He will either get us some money in a sale or will be back with us as No1.

  • andy says:

    In my opinion Roy is out of order, Foster is a Birmingham City player and West Brom should make a bid at the seasons end and not push Blues into a sale. Arsenal are making noises about signing Jack Butland and i believe Blues should be looking to make Jack their number 1 next season and sell Foster.

  • Blueboy88 says:

    Its all about the money, money, money….

    Hodgson is worried other interested parties will come in at the end of the season with larger offers than WBA can match, something he should be very worried about indeed.

    I agree Blues should trust Butland with the No1 shirt next season, & squeeze as much out of the Foster transfer as possible, & that means waiting until the close season.

  • AR says:

    Having had the gall to suggest a couple of weeks ago that “Foster has improved ” under his managership (I wonder how many times he saw him), he is now using the media to try to force Blues to sell. In the past this sort of thing was highly frowned upon by the FA; it’s a great pity they don’t do something about it now. His conceit is clear; even his sacking at Liverpool hasn’t made any difference. I wish we would tell him to take a running jump.

  • RichardW says:

    In the unlikely event that we don’t go up, the proceeds of the sale of Foster can be used to improve the team, or ward off administration. Then let’s sell him to the highest bidder and bring Butland on. If it’s simply going to disappear into a financial black hole in Hong Kong, I’m not so keen.

  • RichardW says:

    In the unlikely event that we don’t go up, the proceeds of the sale of Foster can be used to improve the team, or ward off administration. Then let’s sell him to the highest bidder (not necessarily WBA) and bring Butland on. If it’s simply going to disappear into a financial black hole in Hong Kong, I’m not so keen.

  • Bluenosejohn says:

    Arrogant of Hodgson doing this via the press. Must be worried about losing Foster otherwise he would be doing this through the proper channels. If we don’t go up then clubs will be interested in Foster and the Baggies can take their chance. If they can find a better keeper before then good luck to them.

  • Leigh says:

    If we are going to criticise managers and their raping of this club for players, please do not put Hodgson in the Bruce class.
    At this moment goalkeeper is probably our least worrying position.

  • Wingman Blue says:

    Does Hodgson have a figure in mind? Or is he trying to bounce the club into selling now, perhaps believing the board might quite like a lump sum before the season’s end? Better we lose Foster whilst we have Butland, Myhill and Doyle still on board, then watch Arsenal hoover up Butland and Foster to go anyway. Hodgson, unintentionally, might be doing us a favour if we set up our stall now.

  • Paulo says:

    Who cares what Hodgson thinks? It’s probably mostly media and agents creating the fuss anyway! and I bet any money Foster wants to stay with his mate Ridgewell anyway ..and never mind Butland, Colin Doyle should be our number one!
    Like Leigh says, goalies are not our main concern right now!

  • Lichfield Blue says:

    Hodgson is out of order conducting his business in this way. I wonder if this is more about his future than the Foster transfer per se? Hodgson has not signed a contract yet and, reading between the lines, he wants to be sure the WBA board back him with cash before he does so. Is he just testing the water? Whatever we decide to do about it, the most important thing is CH and the Board do what is right for BCFC and Woy must wait!

    Ben Foster did a great job for us but comments attributed to him since he went to WBA on loan seem to suggest he sees them as his employer. In any other walk of life his comments about Ridgwell “joining us” would amount to a potential breach of his contract; albeit I’m sure this was more thoughtless than malicious on his part. I’d like to see him stay if we go up; if we don’t, then sell him and I’d agree with other comments that Butland/Doyle should be competing for the No. 1 shirt.

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