The loss of Don Cowie to Cardiff was an extremely careless piece of management by the Watford FC board
TODAY`S shock news that winger Don Cowie has joined Cardiff City and Malky Mackay on a free transfer has left me absolutely fuming.
The earlier loss this week of key staff members David Kerslake, Richard Collinge and Joe McBride was always to be expected, and frankly not a huge problem as Sean Dyche was always likely to want to appoint his own backroom team; it`s a new manager`s prerogative.
However, the news that Cowie has been poached by Mackay, and that`s what it is, is most unwelcome. Not that I blame Mackay – this one is entirely the board`s doing.
When Roy Hodgson left Fulham for Liverpool last summer, Mohammed Al-Fayed at least had the good sense to insert a clause in the deal which stipulated Hodgson could not return to Craven Cottage in order to raid the club for their star players. Where was that common sense in our sale of Mackay to south Wales.
Cowie`s move probably came as such a surprise because it was common understanding that Cowie had penned a new contract with the club. The news this afternoon is totally to the contrary.
Graham Taylor has since said that the club only ever offered a new deal to Cowie who had apparently stalled on it for some time. This begs the question – did he expect/want to move? And for that matter, was he privy to any intention of Mackay to jump ship?
GT`s strongly worded statement on the Official Site makes it abundantly clear that he is not impressed with Mackay`s conduct since he left Watford but the damage is done for now, hopefully.
One argument that has been mooted is that the board weren`t in place, but this isn`t true. The only departee has been Julian Winter and the only arrival is Bassini himself. Other than that Taylor, Davi Fransen and Stuart Timperley remain.
One thing is for certain though, all this leaves us extremely short on numbers with the second of our only two senior wingers moving on (Will Buckley) being the other, we still need at least one winger.
Of course, it`s been a bad couple of days with Rhoys Wiggins electing to join Bournemouth`s League One rivals Charlton over us yesterday evening.
We need a winger (or two), we need a full-back, we need a striker (or two) and we probably need central midfield cover for Stephen McGinn and maybe a stronger rival or replacement for Scott Loach, should Swansea`s alleged interest materialise.
Challenging times at Vicarage Road.