Thanks, but no thanks

There was a time (last summer) when I would have welcomed Klaas-Jan Huntelaar to The Lane. Thankfully, those days are long now gone. It was only a few months ago when we were all talking up the lad and saying how good of a signing he would be for us. A.C. Milan fans were doing the same thing. You should hear them now.

Working in an international accounting firm means that we get to meet quite a few people from the continent. Today, I met an A.C. Milan fan who found the time to tell me all about his clubs' recent woes. Not all the blame was pointed at Huntelaar, but Milan just aren't themselves at the minute and the Dutch striker is getting an earful, because it's his job to stick the ball in the net but as yet, he's shown that he doesn't quite know where the goal is.

Today's warning from my Italian colleague was short and shrift; "Stay away from this player!"

The Eredivisie has a knack of producing players that simply cannot do it when they get taken away from the comfort of that league.

Mateja Kežman and Afonso Alves spring to mind. Kežman was quite prolific in the Dutch League, scoring 105 goals in 122 games for PSV. Alves to, was fruitful, notching up an astonishing 45 goals in 39 games for Heerenveen.

Unfortunately for Kežman, his luck in front of goal run out when Chelsea splashed the cash on him. The Serb scored a measly 4 goals from 25 games and hasn't hit the headlines since his move away from the Premier league. Alves also failed to live up to expectation, scoring just 10 goals for Boro in 42 games.

I wouldn't want to throw Huntelaar into the same basket as the above two mentioned players, but his record away from the comfort zone of the Eredivisie doesn't read well.

Since his big money move to Real Madrid in January 2009, he's scored 8 goals and that's including his spell in Milan.

If anything comes of this "swapping Pav for Huntelaar" story, I can see him starting life at The Lane just as Pavlyuchenko left it, on the bench. And yes, I really do think Pav will leave in the January sales and to be honest, I don't blame the lad.

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