Cardiff City have today accepted Sunderland’s Â£5M offer for former Newcastle United striker and academy star Michael Chopra.
The Gosforth born striker has just returned from Cardiff’s training camp in Portugal – and is already in talks with Sunderland officials on contract details.
Michael’s contract is likely to be much improved over the one he had at Cardiff City because of his 22 goals last season and the fact he will be playing in the Premiership again.
Here’s a wonderful example of just how hopeless Newcastle’s old regime were at bringing through local talent. Chopra was always thought to be the next super-star to follow Alan Shearer – but in the last couple of years at Newcastle he didn’t seem to come through as much as everyone had expected – so he was shipped out.
But did Newcastle give him a fair chance â€“ like a run of games in the first team? Absolutely not – and as usual Newcastle preferred the stars they had brought in from outside. When Michael did play he looked what he was â€“ a young player with potential who needed a chance. Also of course – his attitude was always first class having been born and brought up in Newcastle.
So what do we do at the end of last season – we offer him a one year contract â€“ but Michael wanted more security and a chance. So off he goes to Cardiff City for around Â£500K. One short season and 22 goals later he’s worth ten times that amount – a Â£5M player – and would you believe our local rivals Sunderland and Roy Keane are about to snap him up.
We think Michael’s shown a lot of class in the way he came fighting back last season to save his career – and it looks like he was successful. Let’s just hope he will not punish Newcastle for the chances we didn’t give him. Lo and behold if he should score against us next season.
As we said earlier we think it shows just how hopeless Shepherd and Roeder were in leading Newcastle – both from a playing and a business perspective. We need to give our own young lads a chance â€“ and hopefully that will happen with the new regime. To make matters worse it was announced later this afternoon that there was no sell-on clause agreed last year - so Newcastle will not get absolutely nothing ofÂ the Â£5M fee Sunderland are paying Cardiff.Â Â Well, that was the level of management at the club last year – the good news is we now have real business people in charge at the club and a very sage manager in Sam Allardyce.
Cardiff boss Davey Jones said today:
“I am sorry to see him go, everybody in the camp is,”
“But we wish him all the best with Sunderland.”
Chopra’s arrival at Sunderland may not be fully embraced by Sunderland supporters as the 23-year-old is Newcastle born and bred. Newcastle fans will not like it that he will be signing for local rivals Sunderland.
We don’t take that view â€“ we don’t think Chopra’s to blame for anything â€“ but we think Newcastle United is. Let’s treat our local talent from now on with more respect â€“ and at least give them a chance before we let them go.
We’d like to hear comments from both Sunderland and Newcastle fans – because we know this view (rant) will not be universally held by fans.