Loan watch is back

Last updated : 14 February 2017 By Michael Morris

The world has changed since the last time Loan Watch appeared; Britain is on its way out of the EU, Donald Trump has taken charge at the White House and Etien Velikonja has left Cardiff City. Turbulent times, for sure, but Loan Watch is back to pour oil on troubled waters.

Before we start, I'd just like to thank everyone who has visited the Loan Watch Museum. It was a risky venture and I was told it wouldn't take off but I said 'build it and they will come' and I was proved right. I've even had a sign put over the entrance which says 'build it and they will come' in Latin. Or I thought it did. Apparently, 'semper ubi sub ubi ubique' actually means 'always wear underwear everywhere' which is sage advice but not exactly the message I was trying to convey. There was a mix-up involving the sign-writer and google translate that I won't bother you with but I'm leaving it for now anyway, it looks classy and no one's going to notice unless Ian Hislop turns up. For anyone planning to visit, don't miss out on the waxworks section. People have been very impressed with how lifelike the Kenwyne Jones model is.

If we were to make a waxwork of our French striker Idriss Saadi as a City player he'd be sitting on the bench. When he started his season long loan with Kortrijk, in the Belgian top flight, he was on the bench again and must have had a feeling of deja vu (or whatever that is in French). However, it didn't take him long to establish himself in the starting line-up and his two goals yesterday at Standard Liege take him to twelve for the season, in twenty-four appearances. Another player out on a season long loan, Deji Oshilaja, is also in the goals. He scored for the second week in a row as Gillingham got a creditable draw at Bradford. Not the best season for Deji but it's been a disappointing one for Gillingham which hasn't helped. Hopefully, Deji can take confidence from his goals and finish the season strongly.

Of our new players out on loan, it's been a strong start for both our Championship players. Semi Ajayi built on a strong showing in midweek by keeping Tammy Abraham out of the game at Bristol City yesterday, leading to Abraham being subbed after 58 minutes. Another defeat for Rotherham (for whom Tom Adeyemi is injured) but no blame is being attached to Ajayi who has impressed fans and manager alike. The same can be said for Emyr Huws, who was outstanding in Ipswich's 2-2 draw with Reading.

A clean sheet for Ben Wilson as Rochdale drew 0-0 with Bristol Rovers in League 1. Stuart O'Keefe made a lively appearance as a sub for MK Dons in their 1-1 draw with Bolton, for whom Adam le Fondre also made an appearance from the bench. It was a last minute, surprise move for O'Keefe but he's philosophical about what's happened here and is just happy to be playing again. Another late mover, Matty Kennedy, put in an 8/10 performance for Plymouth on his debut in a 1-0 win at Cambridge; taking on defenders, getting in the box and, apparently, getting involved in some link-up play. Whatever that is.

Of our two players that are currently out on loan at non-league level, Lloyd Humphries game for Weston-Super-Mare against Bath was called off while goalkeeper Luke O'Reilly played for Redditch in a 2-0 home defeat against Chippenham. Chippenham had a player named Alex Ferguson in their team, I'm not sure if that's the Alex Ferguson but I assume so. 

A quick check on Loan Watch Hall of Famer, Etien Velikonja, who has now taken his quest for world domination to Turkey. He has joined top flight side, Genclerbirligi, who made the mistake of leaving him on the bench too long yesterday. By the time he came on for his debut in the quarter-finals of the Turkish Cup there was only enough time for him to score one goal and they lost 3-2. That'll learn 'em.