The dust is still settling on the 2016 Summer Transfer Window that saw plenty of movement and chaos. While Tottenham Hotspur’s window is still being assessed and graded by the pundits, we’ve been taking a look back on some of the moves that didn’t happen to try and figure out why. The short answer for most of these is the standard “rumors are just rumors” logic and were generally #BatCountry things to generate clicks. One inquiry in particular stands out, though.
Morgan Schneiderlin is a good footballer who made a move to Manchester United because Louis Van Gaal wanted him and United can pay whatever wages they want. However, he has found himself stuck in limbo because Jose Mourinho is now in charge, new players have been brought in, and Schnedierlin is down the pecking order. Spurs attempted to get the man they wanted one year ago, but it didn’t happen. Here’s why, according to ITV:
Mourinho was not prepared to let Schneiderlin leave the club during the summer, even though he is unlikely to play a huge part for United in the Premier League this season.
While Schneiderlin is by no means a first choice for United, Mourinho would not consider allowing him to leave because he is expected to feature prominently in the club's Europa League campaign.
Now, before I sound off about this, let me make this clear: Mourinho is in charge at United and can block moves if he feels like it. I 100% get this and he isn’t inclined to sell a player if he doesn’t feel like it.
That being said, this absolutely reeks of b*lls**t, and the rest of the article kind of confirms that:
Mourinho also had reservations about letting him join one of the clubs likely to challenge United for the Premier League title, particularly since Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino worked with Schneiderlin at Southampton, and knows how to get the best out of him.
I would have loved to hear the direct quotes on this from Mourinho, but every single article just talks about this in passing and nothing more. That being said, I’m sure this is the real reason as to why he blocked the move and not an excuse about using him for Europa which, at the most, would see him make 15 appearances of the course of the season. He’ll probably get time in the EFL Cup and FA Cup as well.
This is a prime example of how a footballer’s career can be derailed with them having little to no say. Yes, Schneiderlin is making a healthy salary of reportedly £100k/week. However, he has only made two appearances for Mourinho’s side so far this season for a grand total of about ten minutes of actual playing time, instead opting for Ander Herrera and Marouane Fellaini.
If Mourinho’s excuse is that he plans to play him in just Europa, one would think that Schneiderlin cannot be happy about this even with his wages. Professional footballers want to play and not rot away on the bench, which appears to be in Schneiderlin’s future for league play. I’m sure Pochettino probably reached out in an attempt to get the player he trusted at Southampton, given the attempt to sign him last summer. He had a good case to make as well, given that Spurs are in the Champions League this season and now with Schneiderlin down in the pecking order, at least he could go somewhere with a familiar face in charge.
We obviously don’t know the inner workings or conversations that took place with this, other than Spurs made a move and Mourinho said not a chance. He obviously has the power to do this, but you have to feel for Schneiderlin. It’s obvious he’s not first choice and there appeared to be a way out in the form of an old manager, but it wasn’t meant to be. He probably won’t see much action in league play unless injuries occur, and that’s pretty upsetting for a guy who was considered one of the better defensive midfielders in the Premier League just two seasons ago.
Whether or not this blocked bid resulted in Spurs moving towards Moussa Sissoko is up for debate, and here’s hoping that Sissoko comes in and performs well for Tottenham. Still, if Schneiderlin’s playing time doesn’t increase leading up to the January window, I’m sure Pochettino will make another inquiry, even if it gets blocked again.