|That should silence that creepy Icelandic chant thing...|
The level of debate has been intense, with those in favour citing that Tomkins' distribution when coming out of defence is not sleek enough for Bilic's set up. Conversely, many others (VWH included) still regard Tonks as our best centre back after Winston Reid. Undoubtedly, his versatility as a makeshift right back is an asset but seems to have gone against him under Bilic.
However, with James Collins well into his thirties, one would think that three experienced centre backs are a mandatory requirement in these days of soft suspensions and high speed injuries. Campaigns in the two seasons prior to Slaven's arrival were both derailed by our lack of adequate cover at centre back that left a gaping hole in our defence that was only partially plugged by the arrival of Roger 'the relegator' Johnson. Can anyone erase the painful trauma of the back to back 6-goal concessions to Man City and Nottingham's Florist?
Initially the rumours sounded as daft as those that suggested he was heading to rejoin Big Slam at Slumberland, but his visible omission from the US trip raised eyebrows and now there are reports this morning that he is on his way for a medical after the agreement of a £12 million deal. For those that see us as a family club that emphasises blending incoming stars with our home grown talent, this has to be seen as a disappointing moment. For those avaricious types who view £12 million as good money, the purpose of the OS move is to end our history of selling off our best talent. In that regard, Tonks has been the best graduate from our academy since Noble before him.
Meanwhile, on the Payet front, despite a relatively quiet night by his standards last night, he demonstrated his two-footedness with a stunning strike with his lesser (?) left foot in a 5-2 mauling of Iceland. The latest display will only serve to further energise the interests of Europe's top clubs and as Tomkins departure highlights, at the right price we are still as selling club!