Former Socceroos goalkeeper Clint Bolton has slammed the FFA’s pursuit of marquee target Peter Crouch, saying it “reeks of desperation” after not being able to land their preferred targets.
After missing out on former Liverpool and Chelsea striker Fernando Torres and Barcelona icon Andreas Iniesta, who both opted to move to Japan's J-League, reports emerged yesterday that former England international and Stoke City target-man Crouch is now the FFA’s priority to be the A-League’s marquee man for this season.
Bolton isn’t buying the hype, questioning whether the 37-year-old is a player worthy of a marquee spot, with the FFA scrambling to fill the marquee void left by the departure of Sydney FC striker Bobo to Turkish club Alanyaspor.
“First thought is circus act to be quite honest. This whole thing around the marquee at the moment, it reeks of desperation from the FFA,” he told SEN Afternoons.
“For me it’s very amateur hour sort of stuff around the marquee now. The marquee had its place back in the day early on.
“Dwight Yorke for example in season one. I played with Dwight and he was the perfect marquee, Alessandro Del Piero was another one.
“But at the moment it feels like the FFA has this list and they’re just going through and crossing them off, but are these guys really marquees?
“Torres would have been a great addition I think. But you get to these other names that are being thrown out and it just feels like people in suits calling the shots once again in our game in this country, without a real thought about the impact that a marquee player has on the current football landscape.”
The former A-League shot-stopper took a swipe at the “one fix attitude” of the FFA.
“It’s not massive anymore, people are sick of this one fix attitude that our governing body has, and there’s so many other deep rooted issues that we need to be across," Bolton added.
“It’s reflective of where we are at in a lot of ways. If Crouch comes to our country and plays in the A-League, there will be interest initially if he backs it up on the field.
“But I’m not sure what sort of long term benefit it really has.”
Crouch, who can name Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur, Queens Park Rangers, Southampton and Portsmouth among his former clubs, netted five times for the relegated Potters last season.
Listen to Clint Bolton's chat on SEN Afternoons with Andy Maher in the player below