Robert Snodgrass has been linked with a move back to Leeds United from West Ham United again. And while it would be nice to have Snodgrass back at Elland Road, it would be a mistake to bring him aboard. His wages are too high, the club is deep at winger, and his best days are far behind him.
Robert Snodgrass had a fantastic season last year for Hull City. Unfortunately, he moved during the January transfer window to West Ham, and his season got progressively worse as the season went on. His famed free-kicks and deliveries from dead ball situations failed to materialize while wearing Claret and Blue, and instead of “replacing” Dimitri Payet at West Ham, he ended up injured and was dispatched to the bench after an awful slide down the table for the Hammers.
It is curious that Snodgrass is once again linked to Leeds, having been linked to a Elland Road return earlier in the season. Of course, given that his wages at West Ham were in excess of £60,000 pounds a week and that it was rumored that West Ham were looking to recoup some of the £10 million they paid for him from Hull, the move never did make any financial sense from a Leeds perspective. Brighton & Hove Albion and Sunderland, teams that are currently blessed with Premier League TV money, were both linked with an £8 million pound move for Snodgrass earlier this summer. After all of the moves that Leeds have made this offseason, £8 million is far too expensive for Leeds to pay in the transfer market.
Leeds complete deal for Samu Saiz. Player joins for £3 million and signs a 4 year deal. pic.twitter.com/cwV3KSgNRV— AccaTracker App (@AccaTrackerTM) July 13, 2017
To add to the dubiousness of the links, Leeds have brought in attacking players almost exclusively during the summer transfer window. Gianni Alioski is an up-and-coming attacking winger, Samu Saiz can be used as either a winger or as a #10 in a central attacking role, and Liverpool Academy product Madger Gomes has been looking to knock down the door to the first team. They have added to a crowded midfield with Kemar Roofe, Stuart Dallas, Hadi Sacko, and even Souleymane Doukara also options out wide. Enough wingers and midfielders have been brought in to the club that the long-term future of players such as Dallas have been brought into question. So why would Leeds break the bank on Snodgrass instead of spending the money on a central defender. After all, if the club was willing or able to spend £8 million on a transfer fee for a player, Kyle Bartley would be in training camp with Leeds instead of on tour of the United States with Swansea City.
Leeds very quick to use the ball when they're in the final third. Good, direct passing. No further chances yet. 1-0 on 14 mins. #lufc— Phil Hay (@PhilHayYEP) July 20, 2017
Finally, and perhaps the most important point, is that almost all of the moves that the team has made have been for players that have a future ahead of them. Vurnon Anita is the oldest player that the Whites have brought in during the transfer window at 28 years old, and he was brought in a free transfer after he was released by Newcastle. It makes no sense for Leeds and for the transfer plan or wage structure at the club to bring in a 29 year old who is coming off a poor half season with West Ham. Snodgrass was never fleet of foot in the first place, but his foot speed has gotten even worse as he’s grown older. From what the team has show so far in preseason, Leeds looks to be playing a pressing game on the wings, and there is no way that Snodgrass can keep up with those demands at his age and athleticism.
Snodgrass coming back would be a good story, but it doesn’t make any sense. Don’t let the memories of the past become dreams. Because looking at the past like a dream will only bring a nightmare, as the fans will be disappointed and turn on Snodgrass if the collective memory of his talents fail to be on display.