Friday, 26 March 2010

Cairney kick it? Now he can

Tom Cairney's daft contract problem is solved, and the supremely gifted youngster has signed his new deal.

It's a relief, and the previous couple of weeks of wrangling seem to have been little more than a waste of time for everyone concerned. But hopefully now Cairney has learned that he has to be advised for his own benefit, and not for that of his advisors. Agents will get their cut anyway, but the good ones make sure the best deal remains that for the player.

Cairney was dropped from the squad for the Arsenal game after an unlicensed advisor, believed to be the teenager's solicitor, got involved in the deal. Cairney was in the first team and had just scored his first Premier League goal but was, because of this unscrupulous individual, unable to negotiate directly to the club under FA rules.

Adam Pearson, unsurprisingly miffed by this, refused the demands and went public to embarrass the advisor, who was ultimately trying to benefit himself, into backing down, and Cairney was dropped from the team, missing the chance to play against Arsenal and impress a wider audience.

Cairney can be absolved of personal responsibility here. It's fair to suppose that he didn't necessarily try to use this unlicensed advisor to try to make the pips of the club squeak, but just because he was naive. There had evidently been some clearing of the air last week as he was on the bench at Portsmouth, although he didn't get on the pitch.

It's a shame that it ever happened, even if the outcome is now satisfactory for all concerned. Cairney, after all, has lost his place in the side, a place that this blog and many other sources were claiming he deserved long before Phil Brown finally gave him his Premier League bow. Under the new manager, he will have to work doubly hard to get it back and prove he is worth the money he is currently on, never mind the money someone with their own agenda tried to claim he should be on.

Cairney is contracted now until 2013. If he maintains the progress he has been making at a similar rate, those bigger wages will eventually be his anyway. It's up to him, not any wideboy third party, and it has to remain only up to him. Meanwhile, it's fantastic news for the club that Cairney has joined Liam Cooper in signing up. Given our utter failure to bring good enough players through the ranks and make them into proper first team performer over the last decade and more, it's about time. Short term issues remain questionable but, in the long term, the future is bright.