To begin, I agree that anything above £3m represents one hell of a gamble for Shane Long. True he had a very good season for Reading last year but before that, he wasn't exactly setting the world alight was he? The guy is a very good Championship player but is likely to be found wanting in the Prem. So, you pay £8m now and you probably reckon on recouping £3m or £4m tops in 18 month's time.
But, with respect, that is beside the point. If Long bags 20 goals and secures an immediate return to the Prem, he is worth a £5m depreciation over 18 months. If the rumours are true, this is a spectacular statement of intent on behalf of Sullivan and Gold. True, they are probably reckoning on pocketing £8m from the sale of Parker and £6m from the sale of Cole, but that money is not yet guaranteed and £4m has already been invested in Nolan and a further £2m in Taylor.
At this rate, they will spending more to get out of the Championship than they invested on staying in the Prem. It makes you wonder if there was a strategy involved after all, based on reducing that absurd wage bill ready for launching a bid for Champions League football once we have occupied the Olympic Stadium.
Hang on, did I just write that? I'm going for a lie down!