Saturday, July 11, 2009

Jermaine Pennant gets what he doesn't deserve

Remember those crazy days last season when Jermaine Pennant was apparently receiving offers and overtures from AC Milan?

Well, things are a little less crazy now, but the former Liverpool winger failure and Pompey paycheck-casher has somehow engineered a move to La Liga and Real Zaragoza, where he'll surely do his best to refute Cristiano Ronaldo's theory that Spain is the new power seat.

It's a wonderful, sunny new place for Pennant to underachieve, and the worst of it is that thanks to Spain's lazy tax laws, the son-of-a-bitch will be rolling in the money.

I didn't know if it was possible to hate him more, but learning this showed me otherwise!

To break it down for a second:

It is the detail of Pennant's deal at Zaragoza with regard to taxes that will have some English players and agents salivating. His three-year contract is worth £6.24m net, with the Spanish club effectively paying his taxes. They have been helped to do this by top-bracket tax perks or what has become informally known in Spain as the "Beckham law".

In an attempt to encourage overseas businesses to place their leading executives in Spain, the government introduced legislation to cut taxes in the top bracket to 23% for the first five years. Real Madrid, a club synonymous with galáctico signings such as Beckham, then argued successfully that leading overseas footballers ought to enjoy the same privilege.
As the article goes on to explain, not only will Zaragoza be paying the taxes on his paycheck every week (somewhere in the region of 10,000 pounds), but he'll take home a minimum of 40 grand a week with no strings, AND Zaragoza even threw in a car and a villa to his deal, meaning that the awful, horrendous, absolutely painfully useless right-winger is sitting prettier than most.

Quoth the inept bastard: "I wanted to come to Spain and I had offers from important teams in Europe but I joined Real Zaragoza. I really want to get started and do well in the league."

I'm sure you do, Jermaine. I mean, three goals in three-and-a-half seasons at Anfield shows just how firmly you believe in "getting started".

Perhaps more troubling for the EPL is this tax situation outlined above, something that could potentially see a ton of superstars leaving England in order to keep more of their money (England currently imposes a 50% tax rate for those people earning more than 150k per year), and a country like Spain, already far advanced in the Totty, Weather and Cuisine stakes, would make for quite a soft, sexy landing should others decide to defect.

Most galling of all is that it's Jermaine Pennant being the one to expose this glorious, totally unfair loophole. If Jermaine Pennant can do it, why not Crouchaldinho, or Darren Bent, or Kenwyne Jones, or Joey Barton, or Florent Malouda, or David Bentley?

(pause for thought)

.... actually, it would be kinda nice to get rid of all that EPL deadweight. And if Spain theoretically took 'em all, C-Ron would be eating his words about which league is best.

Until that happens, focus your hate rays on Pennant, and all that filthy lucre, and the free sports car, and the luxury villa.

May he get immediately sold to FC Twente, or Brann Bergen, or some club in the Faroe Islands.


ü75 said...

Nothing like saying to your new club "I could have gone somewhere good, but I came here instead." Nice start, asshole.

user said...

You sound disgustingly bitter. Being jealous isn't an attractive trait.

He had offers from AC Milan, Real Madrid and Espanyol in Europe, if you think those aren't massive clubs then you are dillusional! Instead of going there he chose to go to Real Zaragoza - the newly promoted side and to be fair to him its a massive risk. He wont know any of the players there, the language or the culture unlike the other clubs in Europe or England where some of his old team mates are. If he was just after money and not a place to shine then he would have gone to one of the other clubs and risked not having regular football due to high competition, sat on the bench and took the money. No one critizes Shaun Wright-Philips or Carlton Cole for sitting on the bench and partying for seasons on end, getting paid for doing nothing.

To be perfectly honest being as young as he was when he moved to Arsenal, and being thrown in with all the "big boys" who were already established, he wasn't given a fair chance to fulfill his potential. He's even said himself in interviews that he should have stayed at Notts county until he was 16 like Walcott did at Southampton to grow and mature a bit more and that he used to get told he was progressing at an excellent rate but left out with no reason on a saturday. If that happened to me at work that would mess my head up and get me worrying where im going wrong too. At the age of 15 you need confidence to move forward and not having faith shown in you because of your age what with his already troubles background ( Im sure his father is a drug addict/dealer and his mother is dead???) thats bound to send you off the rails, no? All credit to him for staying on the right path in the first place! When he was at Birmingham and Steve Bruce showed him faith he repayed him with amazing performances on a weekly basis and was the best crosser in the league scoring regular goals and setting up most of the goals scored by his team mates (check the stats if you dont believe me) thats why Liverpool bought him. You dont get noticed and signed by Arsenal AND Liverpool if you have no talent. They are top four sides, with silverware and constantly in the top four of the premier league! When Rafa believed in him before he broke his leg he was amazing then too, played his heart out in the Champions league final. Its since he broke his leg and didnt get played after coming back from injury due to Kuyt's form that hes gone off the rails again, partying and drinking. Hopefully Zaragoza playing him week in - week out will build his confidence up and we'll see the 15 year old scarlet coming out again that was so amazing he got taken to Arsenal.
Plus there isn't the media waiting to vilify him at any given point printing stories saying "oh look Pennant is in Loughton wearing an orange Ralph Lauren shirt" or critising him for wearing Louis Vuitton combat boots when he's out with his girlfriend. Its ridiculous. Seriously, give the guy a break and let him grab this opportunity with both hands like he wants too, if he messes up then make a post like this but he's not even played a game. He's not even in England anymore so you aren't exactly forced to watch him unless you make a point of tuning into La Liga on Sky Sports so why does it bother you so much. Zaragoza aren't a conference team they wouldnt have signed him and offered him a villa and car if they weren't confident that given the right support system he could do the job.

And yes I am a Liverpool supporter incase anyone wishes to start.

Lingering Bursitis said...


I'm a lifelong LFC fan. Born and raised. I am not jealous of Jermaine, just irritated as the guy practically stole money from LFC and turned in a string of utterly shit performances for us. He was absolutely rubbish, and yet he's getting a massive paycheck and all these perks from a club that could desperately use him at his peak level.

Zaragoza are hoping upon hope that he'll be amazing for them, that he'll experience a renaissance and will really be an asset to their team. Just like Pompey did, until they stopped using him too.

Problem is, he'll go there, disappoint, underwhelm, and gleefully collect their tax-free money instead.

And it's that pattern that I have a fucking problem with.

DJ said...

I guess we'll have to agree to disagree on this one then mate as I felt Pennant put in some very good performances when he had a run of games at the Pool. I watched him at Pompey (only a couple of times though on match of the day) and he was a handful for defense - winning fouls, tackles and generally outplaying them with his pace. He also put in a lot of good crosses but seeing as Crouch was upfront alone many of them were ineffective when Crouch got blocked off in the box with no support. Again he then had a hamstring tear or something? I remember him being out for a month and then again went off the radar a little coming on as sub when he got fit again due to them using Johnson to run forward then cut into the middle and attack from there as opposed to having an out an out winger.

I think thats always been his problem if im honest. Kuyt is nowhere near as skillful, fast or good as him on the wing but Kuyt is in his comfort zone when he can cut into the middle, deliver a pass and run forward into the box. Pennant likes to bomb forward and attack defenses, get past them and deliver the final ball. Zaragoza, and Spain in general, play that type of attacking football and definately accomodate for wingers. We dont seem to do that in England, except for at Villa and Spurs we all set our teams out the same. Which reminds me I read on another forum that Pennant was seen in Essex having a meeting with Redknapp to be competition for Lennon but that fell through as they're keeping Bentley now? Not sure how true that was, but there aren't many wingers over here let's be honest. Look at the England squad theres not one winger guaranteed a place; its always a chop and change between Wright-Philips, Lennon, Bentley and sometimes Becks then we wonder why we dont win because we have no consistancy.

I dont know why wingers aren't rated in the EPL, isn't Walcott supposed to be a winger but he's playing as a striker? Or is it the other way round lol. Even Ronaldo was playing through the middle most of the time yet hes classed as a winger. Its madness!

My personal opinion is that with encouragement and confidence Pennant will do well. These clubs aren't silly, everyone is acting like they are Grays Athletic and they signed him because they were desperate for an English star. The guy has a £21 million buy out clause for God sake, if they didn't believe he was going to succeed and have clubs after him in a season or so there's no way they would have put that price tag on him and given him a three year deal. They could have said "look mate, its already the beginning of pre-season if you want to get your fitness up and play straight away we will give you a two year deal, this much money and thats it". Im sure there were loads of players his age in Spain they could have bought. Real Madrid actually agreed a fee for him in January they're far from silly. If he behaves and stays focussed Rafa will be kicking himself for not managing to keep him grounded during his time at anfield. Stevie G said in a interview on sky sports that Pennant was the naughtiest lad in the changing room but once he got on the training field give him a ball and he can do anything you ask. He's just a player who thrives on confidence and encouragement.

jjf3 said...

OOH-SAH's MEN'S National Team (as opposed to women's) is playing live, and no blog?

Don't care, as I also lost internet for the entire game, but I'm mildly surprised...

ü75 said...

We had a sever case of the can't-get-to-its

Mike Georger said...

Pennant had every chance in the world in his first two seasons. He made more appearances his first year than anyone in the team. Sure he can beat people (mainly shitty AC Milan left backs) but his crossing was absolute crap. That signing class by Rafa was one of the worst ever.

ü75 said...

Fire Rafa?

Mike Georger said...

Gotta keep him on his toes.

The Likely Lad said...

I second part of georger's point, i think, in saying he was prob pool's best player in the first half against milan in the 2007 cl final.

but that amounted to nothing and i dont really remember much of him otherwise.

so yea! yea!!