With every player signed and sold we seem to getting rid of our British grit, determination, desire, passion, fight and Bulldog attitude which was our best weapon and key strength last season and replacing it with French arrogance, skill, pace, creativity and je ne se qua.
Carroll, Nolan and Barton epitomised these traits.
Pardew has said that we needed more creativity in the squad and I agree with him.
He also said we need more pace and I agree with him.
He also said we need to keep the ball more and control possession and I agree with him.
However, what the club are doing to the team at the moment, I don't agree with.
We should be adding to our British core strength we had last season, not replacing.
We should have a squad that has the Carroll, Barton, Nolan philosophy of never say die, smash the opposition, sheer bloody mindedness to win. With the Ben Arfa, Cabaye, Marveaux controlled, creative, skillfull, pace, influence to go with it.
Unfortunately, due to a lack of intelligence? foresight? strategy? we aren't doing this. We seem to have a 'grass is always greener' approach to our season last year of; well the English technically lacking lads did well last year, but this year I want more technique.
Thats fine. But dont rip the heart out of the team that did very well last season completely. Because what are we left with..?
Do we think these French lads will play with the same intensity as we did last year...?
Do we think these French lads will want to know on a cold, wintery night down at Stoke/Bolton/Swansea...?
Do we think these lads will be interested or up for the fight of a relegation scrap if it materialises...?
I think I know the answer.
Our football club (through guile or stupidity) is taking a huge risk in creating a 'nothing but european' flavour to our team. That may play like France from the World Cup '98 one week, to play like France from the World Cup 2010 the next.
We will have to see how this season turns out, and see where we are come the turn of the year.
January transfer window could be interesting this season.
Vive le Toon!