Paul Wheelock column: It is too early to write Luke Varney off as an unnecessary addition

Luke Varney

Luke Varney

First published in Football Lancashire Telegraph: Photograph of the Author by , Blackburn Rovers reporter

LUKE Varney is not a signing that has set the fans’ pulses racing.

But it is far too premature to write the striker, whose arrival will be confirmed once his contract at Leeds runs out, off as an unnecessary addition to Gary Bowyer’s squad.

Granted Varney did not pull up any trees in his initial four-month loan spell.

But his failure to shine had less to do with his application and more to do with the dramatic transformation of Rudy Gestede into one of the Championship’s most feared front man.

And for all of Gestede’s undoubted potential few outside the canny Rovers coaching camp could honestly say they saw that coming when Varney belatedly arrived at Ewood Park on February 8.

Just three starts and nine substitute appearances followed.

But while Varney may not have won over the fans, his attitude and professionalism have certainly won favour with his manager and his team-mates alike.

And with another of Bowyer’s possible targets, Liam Feeney, having moved to Bolton – another player who, understandably, Rovers supporters had serious question marks over – Varney’s ability to play out wide also counts in his favour.

As does the fact that, like a number of Bowyer’s signings, he will sign a contract, in the £5,000 to £10,000-per-week wage bracket, that befits a club in the Championship.

Gone are the disastrous days of the summer of 2012 when, under the Shebby Singh-led regime, £30,000-per-week deals were handed out willy-nilly.

Rovers are still paying for those days and will be for two years yet, unless they can somehow shift the likes of Leon Best and Dickson Etuhu this summer.

Reducing the wage bill still has to be owners Venky’s and boss Bowyer’s priority this summer.

But they cannot afford to stand still either and it is imperative they work together to bolster a promising squad that ended the campaign unbeaten in 12 games.

Thanks to Bowyer’s astute work in the transfer work it is a squad which, providing there are no major unexpected losses, that realistically needs only a right back and cover at centre back.

But do not be surprised at the arrival of one or two more squad players – players who are able to operate in a variety of positions and who will not rock the boat if they do not make the starting line-up every week.

Players like Varney.

Comments (9)

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3:53pm Thu 22 May 14

Super_Clarets says...

Rhodes replacement.
Rhodes replacement. Super_Clarets
  • Score: -20

4:05pm Thu 22 May 14

jinkyjase says...

Super_Clarets wrote:
Rhodes replacement.
Rhodes > Ings replacement
[quote][p][bold]Super_Clarets[/bold] wrote: Rhodes replacement.[/p][/quote]Rhodes > Ings replacement jinkyjase
  • Score: 2

4:40pm Thu 22 May 14

Alan42 says...

Completely superfluous, unnecessary and useless waste of a wage that could be paid to a player who might improve he team pool.
Completely superfluous, unnecessary and useless waste of a wage that could be paid to a player who might improve he team pool. Alan42
  • Score: 3

5:29pm Thu 22 May 14

MattNewcastle says...

If this is our ambition this transfer window I despair.

Taylor Marrow Judge spring to mind
If this is our ambition this transfer window I despair. Taylor Marrow Judge spring to mind MattNewcastle
  • Score: -6

6:49pm Thu 22 May 14

Not_A_Loon_From_Pune says...

Alan42 wrote:
Completely superfluous, unnecessary and useless waste of a wage that could be paid to a player who might improve he team pool.
Totally agree. I'd rather spend that money on the wages for a young up and coming striker rather than a past it, never has been.
[quote][p][bold]Alan42[/bold] wrote: Completely superfluous, unnecessary and useless waste of a wage that could be paid to a player who might improve he team pool.[/p][/quote]Totally agree. I'd rather spend that money on the wages for a young up and coming striker rather than a past it, never has been. Not_A_Loon_From_Pune
  • Score: 1

8:06pm Thu 22 May 14

RoversNorthEast says...

terrible signing I would not pay him 50 quid a week
terrible signing I would not pay him 50 quid a week RoversNorthEast
  • Score: 0

10:49am Fri 23 May 14

jimluftas says...

Players normally perform better on loan than when they sign permanently. Gresko anyone? I don't understand the 'he can play out wide' line? So could I, but I would also be sh1t. And I didn't realise £5-10k was cheap these days?! For a journeyman who will be 3rd choice at best.
Players normally perform better on loan than when they sign permanently. Gresko anyone? I don't understand the 'he can play out wide' line? So could I, but I would also be sh1t. And I didn't realise £5-10k was cheap these days?! For a journeyman who will be 3rd choice at best. jimluftas
  • Score: 0

11:12am Fri 23 May 14

French Rover says...

MattNewcastle wrote:
If this is our ambition this transfer window I despair.

Taylor Marrow Judge spring to mind
Silly point Matt, every manager gets some signings wrong even the very best like Fergie et al.

What about the other signings that Bowyer made like Cairney, Gestede, Marshall, Evans, Spurr, Klilgallon and Conway?

Dont despair Matt, delight in what is looking to be a wonderful season to come!
[quote][p][bold]MattNewcastle[/bold] wrote: If this is our ambition this transfer window I despair. Taylor Marrow Judge spring to mind[/p][/quote]Silly point Matt, every manager gets some signings wrong even the very best like Fergie et al. What about the other signings that Bowyer made like Cairney, Gestede, Marshall, Evans, Spurr, Klilgallon and Conway? Dont despair Matt, delight in what is looking to be a wonderful season to come! French Rover
  • Score: 5

11:51am Fri 23 May 14

Welsh Rover says...

A lot of negativity surrounding this signing. Personally, I don't think he had enough game time to make as big of an impact that he's actually capable of. Hopefully, with a good pre-season behind him, he'll have a better understanding with his teammates and, as a result, make a positive contribution to the team.

Just out of curiosity, are there any other strikers that any of you think Bowyer should be targeting, bearing in mind the financial constraints he's under?

Dewch Ar Chi Gleision!
A lot of negativity surrounding this signing. Personally, I don't think he had enough game time to make as big of an impact that he's actually capable of. Hopefully, with a good pre-season behind him, he'll have a better understanding with his teammates and, as a result, make a positive contribution to the team. Just out of curiosity, are there any other strikers that any of you think Bowyer should be targeting, bearing in mind the financial constraints he's under? Dewch Ar Chi Gleision! Welsh Rover
  • Score: 2

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