Southampton have today announced the signing of Dan Powell from Eastleigh FC for £1.5m plus Ollie Lancashire, Ryan Smith, and Jan Poortvliet. In a day that saw Portsmouth and West Ham both plunge into administration on the same fateful morning, it was easy to miss the transfer tug of war being faught between Arsenal, Tottenham, and Southampton. Powell has been running riot in the Blue Square South this season, bagging 42 goals in 25 appearances.
For once, it came down to the player's decision, and he opted to sign for his home town club, despite them playing in the lower echelons of the Championship.
Southampton, who have recently been taken over by Ronald McDonald, managed to secure Powell's signature in the largest transfer involving a non league club in history.
McDonald, famous for his Big Macs and McFlurrys, met Powell in one of his many restaurants on the South Coast and they ironed out the contract there and then over a Milkshake and fries. McDonald has taken over from the disgraced Rupert Lowe, found guilty of Child Abuse under the newly created Tight Bastard Act 2008, a hastily formed Act in response to the recent economic downturn. Lowe, who admitted his guilt, was sentenced to 5 years, and is expected to be deported to Guantanamo Bay in the coming days.
Powell signed a 4 1/2 year contract with Saints, and will be hoping to form a potent frontline with recently recalled Gzergorz Rasiak and their other new signing, Kevin Doyle from Reading.
When speaking to journalists outside Saints' newly built centre for nutritional excellence, Powell admitted that the decision wasn't too difficult, "As soon as I heard of Southampton's interest, there was only one club for me. Despite interest from north London, I was never going to sign for Tottenham with the corruption charges hanging over 'Arry, and I'm not really fond of frogs, so Arsenal weren't for me."
Harry Redknapp has been implicated in financial irregularities at both Portsmouth and West Ham, and was suspended by Tottenham this morning once the news broke of the two English clubs' difficulties. He has been troubled by rumours in recent times that he is indeed useless.
With Jan Poortvliet moving to Eastleigh as part of the deal, Southampton will now be searching for a new manager. Early indications are that McDonald wants a young up-and-coming manager to lead the club forward. Inevetably, Alan Shearer, Matt Le Tissier, Jason Dodd, and Agustin Delgado are high-profile names being mentioned.