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Signings You Were Wrong About

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With the transfer window open and fans rushing to make snap judgements on the signings of their own team and the rest of the league, it got me thinking of the times where you have got things wrong on a new signing. This can be based on your initial reaction to them signing or your judgement after their first few games which turned out to be wrong. 

My top 5 (in no particular order) is based on signings I thought would be hopeless but turned out great but feel free to list some who went the other way and flopped after high initial expectations.

Top 5 Flops Turned Good

1. Kevin Nisbet - The obvious and most recent example for us. Arrived on trial at Starks Park as a bit of joke figure after two terrible loan spells at Dumbarton and Ayr United. He failed to score for Dumbarton and his spell at Ayr was probably best remembered for missing an open goal from one yard out against us at Starks Park. It became clear he was our back up option should we be unable to sign our first choice target, Rory Loy. After Loy turned us down to sign for Dumbarton, we eventually signed Nisbet to little excitement and the vast majority lamenting the fact we had missed out on the superior Loy. However, whilst Loy went on to be a flop at Dumbartion, Nisbet right away proved himself to be an excellent signing. A goalscorer but a better all round player than he was often given credit for. 34 goals in his one season with us and almost dragged a poor Raith side to promotion. Disappointing the way he left but he had earned his moved. The frustration is he is exactly the player we are missing this year and also in 17/18 but he was with us the one season we have had in League One where the supporting cast was too mediocre to assist in a title challenge.

2. Dougie Hill (Hall) - Signed for us before our first season back in the Championship in 2009. He was signed alongside Grant Murray to replace the departing Marvin Andrews. Dougie Hill just released from a disappointing spell at Alloa looked to be cheap and underwhelming squad filler. However, over the next 6 years he established himself as a solid, reliable and no nonsense defender with over 100 appearances for the club. Fondly remembered for throttling Josh Falkingham in a Fife derby but the clear highlight was his Man of the Match performance in the 1-0 Ramsdens Cup Final win over The Rangers.

3. Gregory Tade - Another signing for our first season in the Championship in 2009. Tade joined us after a goalless half season with Clyde. His signing was not met with much excitement and this was not helped by his first few appearances. A pre season friendly against Norwich at Starks saw him missed at least 3 one on ones with each miss appearing worse than the one before. One skied over the bar, one ran straight into the goalkeeper and one falling over before reaching the goal. This continued in our first competitive game against Stirling Albion when for the first time I can remember the majority of fans remained in their seats as he raced through on goal certain he would miss (which he did). However, our next game against East Fife saw him get off the mark and he kicked on from there. Unbelievable pace and power and whilst he could never be described as a technical player that side of his game did improve. Alongside John Baird his performances took us within 3 games of the Premier League in 2010/2011 as well as the famous winner at Pittodrie. A cult hero at Starks and went on to have a great career since leaving. 

4. Marvin Andrews (3rd Spell) - Cheating slightly here as most people in Scotland knew how good big Marv could be. However, his third spell for us saw him join in us in March where he hadn't played since leaving us at the end of the previous season. 10 months without playing, bad injury record with dodgy knees and form dropping off towards the end of his second spell meant that no Raith fan predicted quite the level of impact he would have for us. Turned up as a trialist at Bayview and strolled a 1-0 win. Signed after the game but the next week we lost 1-0 at home to Ayr in what was billed as a title decider. However, 8 straight wins with only one goal conceded saw us overtake Ayr and win the title with a game to spare. The highlight for me was the 3-1 home win against Alloa. We were down to 10 men after 30 minutes, 1-1 with half an hour to go. Big Marv who had been outstanding in defence set up 2 goals in the last 20 minutes with a marauding run and byline cross and then a 40 yard through ball. His on the field performances were superb and him getting everyone to 'Believe' mean that I look back on his 3rd and final spell with most fondness.

5. David McGurn - Signed on in 2008. Released by Morton after struggling to nail down a starting place and playing second fiddle to the likes of Paul Mathers. This meant expectations were not huge with his arrival. However, over his 8 years and over 200 appearances he proved himself to the best Rovers goalkeeper in a generation and for a number of years from 2009 he was arguably the best goalkeeper outside of the top flight. So many great performances but the wonder save at East End Park which set up a counter attack which we scored from to secure a 2-0 win and the triple save against Ayr are personal favourites.

Honourable mentions to Brian Graham (Pre hernia operation was very poor, goal machine thereafter), Jason Thomson (Terrible right back according to Pars fans but went on to be very good for us for 6 seasons) and Kieran MacDonald (If we can continue his first half of the season form he will make lists like this in the future, scored or assisted 15 goals so far and been excellent defensively). 

Possible nominations for exciting signings who flopped (with obvious recency bias): Callum Crane, Liam Buchanan, Greig Spence (second spell), Jon Daly, Craig Wighton, Chris Johnston, Declan McManus, Ryan McCord.

 

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The signing I was most wrong about was Liam Fox. Having watched him for Livingston against us, I was convinced he'd be our midfield linchpin, but never quite happened. 

He did play a 'probing ball' to use one of Jock Brown's favourite phrases, into the heart of the Sevco defence during the Ramsdens Cup Final, which caused Billy Moshni to fall flat on his James Blunt, and subsequently led to our winning goal, but I've got repeated visions of him being outstripped time and time again by Linlithgow Rose players in the Scottish Cup tie seven months later. 

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This man changed the way I judge new signings:

Image result for jim lister dumbarton"

Jim Lister had a fairly piss poor career when he joined us, plodding around the juniors with brief stints at Alloa and Brechin. We'd just been promoted and he was one of Alan Adamsons first signings. The Sons support gave out a collective "what the f**k are we doing?" when he arrived. How wrong we all were. He just smashed everything he came into contact with and was a complete joy to watch. When Ian Murray came in and finally got him to chuck his pre-match McDonalds meal he got even better. The focal point of our "great escape" and will go down as a legend for any Sons of this era. A shame that he chucked us to play for Airdrie the following season, but what a season he gave us. I try not to judge our signings now until I've seen them play, too many examples of "sure things" and "donkeys" arriving only for the opposite to happen.

The top 5 consists of another 4 Jim Listers.

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Ruben Sammut

U23 Captain for Chelsea and Scotland U21 cap Ruben Sammut was one of the key signings made by Paul Hartley in his charge for the Scottish Championship 2018/19 title. Apparently on 10 grand a week at Chelsea (don’t know how true that was). The man had a decent pedigree and most on here assumed he would absolutely shag the league.

It was clear to see that he was however just a boy, who had never played against men before, struggling to play anything other than 5 yard sideways passes.

He wasn’t the worst player signed from that season however he definitely was one of the most disappointing. He made 7 appearances before then going back to Chelsea in January and right back into training with the likes of World Cup winner Ngolo Kante. He has somehow found himself at Sunderland fleecing another club of a wage.

IMG_2592.jpg

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This man changed the way I judge new signings:
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Jim Lister had a fairly piss poor career when he joined us, plodding around the juniors with brief stints at Alloa and Brechin. We'd just been promoted and he was one of Alan Adamsons first signings. The Sons support gave out a collective "what the f**k are we doing?" when he arrived. How wrong we all were. He just smashed everything he came into contact with and was a complete joy to watch. When Ian Murray came in and finally got him to chuck his pre-match McDonalds meal he got even better. The focal point of our "great escape" and will go down as a legend for any Sons of this era. A shame that he chucked us to play for Airdrie the following season, but what a season he gave us. I try not to judge our signings now until I've seen them play, too many examples of "sure things" and "donkeys" arriving only for the opposite to happen.
The top 5 consists of another 4 Jim Listers.

Brilliant for us as well. If only all players had his attitude and work rate. Smokes like a lum too I’m sure.

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Andy Ryan! 

Genuinely worried about facing him yesterday, got a hat-trick last time at Bayview. Needn't have worried though! 

Edited by Life on Marrs?

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Sir Michael Bolochoweckyj according to some clyde fans he was past it and would get sent off every week.Bolo came in and did a steady job for us proper old fashioned nonsense centre half.

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Gomis this season for sure, looked done at Utd last season but is showing what good players can do and stick out like a sore thumb

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Gomis this season for sure, looked done at Utd last season but is showing what good players can do and stick out like a sore thumb

Couldn't agree more. Thought when we signed him that he'd be a back up but he's one of the first names on the teamsheet.

 

Gary Miller is another one. I felt he was an uninspiring signing when we got him, but recognised that he'd provide good cover, however, since M&M have came in he's became a huge player for us.

 

 

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Big Sir Christopher Templeman. I thought he was finished when he first joined us, looked old, slow and uninterested. But when SP took over it was like he gained a new lease of life and was instrumental in us winning the title. He was still old and slow, but his control and finishing were magnificent. Happy to.admit I was wrong about him.

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Suppose taking a slightly different tack.. when we signed Sean Higgins a few years ago, during the Barry bi annual signing merry go round.  I thought he would be a standout in L2 ;;experienced player,  scored goals at high level etc etc

How wrong could I be... useless, uninterested Imposter of a player. Think he turned up twice in matches in 2 years. Of course long line of equally poor charlatans signed by Barry, but Higgins should have been much much better. 

Edited by FREDDYFRY

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On 07/01/2020 at 14:53, Senor Bairn said:

Ruben Sammut

U23 Captain for Chelsea and Scotland U21 cap Ruben Sammut was one of the key signings made by Paul Hartley in his charge for the Scottish Championship 2018/19 title. Apparently on 10 grand a week at Chelsea (don’t know how true that was). The man had a decent pedigree and most on here assumed he would absolutely shag the league.

It was clear to see that he was however just a boy, who had never played against men before, struggling to play anything other than 5 yard sideways passes.

He wasn’t the worst player signed from that season however he definitely was one of the most disappointing. He made 7 appearances before then going back to Chelsea in January and right back into training with the likes of World Cup winner Ngolo Kante. He has somehow found himself at Sunderland fleecing another club of a wage.

IMG_2592.jpg

 

3mym27-1.jpg

3myksm.jpg

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I was disappointed when he left us! Didn't half rip the pish oot o players at times and it was good to watch. I'm sure if he had pace he would have played at a much higher level.

Big Sir Christopher Templeman. I thought he was finished when he first joined us, looked old, slow and uninterested. But when SP took over it was like he gained a new lease of life and was instrumental in us winning the title. He was still old and slow, but his control and finishing were magnificent. Happy to.admit I was wrong about him.

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Templeman was a class act. I mind telling an Arbroath fan at a play-off game v Forfar that he was head and shoulders above everyone else on the park (he was on more than one front).

The guy wasn't having it. Temps destroyed them over the two legs.

As for the original question, I thought Steve Archibald was a bad appointment as manager.

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23 hours ago, Angusfifer said:

Templeman was a class act. I mind telling an Arbroath fan at a play-off game v Forfar that he was head and shoulders above everyone else on the park (he was on more than one front).

The guy wasn't having it. Temps destroyed them over the two legs.

As for the original question, I thought Steve Archibald was a bad appointment as manager.

Big Sanny, Sir Templeman often looked uncoordinated, he was some player and instrumental in getting the Mo to League 1. 
He was getting on a bit, but I was sad to see him retire. A big guy that the opposition didn’t mess with. Got a great goal during that hugely important and entertaining game at Links Park, Mo 3 2 Peterhead.

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Scott Rumsby. Wondered why we were signing the Centre Half of the Cowdenbeath team that had just finished bottom of League 2 for the second season running. He's been quietly brilliant since he arrived and now an accomplished lower league defender.

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Coincidentally as I said on another thread tonight; Scott Rumsby is probably pound for pound Danny Lennon’s best signing, honestly can’t remember his last bad game. 

Edited by FREDDYFRY

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