Richard Hercock: Clock ticking down to another night of disappointment

Queens Park Rangers manager Harry RedknappQueens Park Rangers manager Harry Redknapp
Queens Park Rangers manager Harry Redknapp
So did you get your invitation for Monday night’s party?

No. Oh well must be in the post then.

What for I hear you ask... only one of the biggest nights on the football calendar, it’s the closure of the January transfer window.

Okay, forget that the January window actually closes on February 2, as if we can really expect people to work weekends in a sport which is predominantly played on Saturdays.

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I jest with the idea of a transfer window closure party, of course, it just feels too American.

But as the clock displayed on my Sky sports page continually reminds me, the hours are counting down before buying and selling of players comes to an end until the summer.

Or for most clubs, the week after when the emergency loans window reopens and you do whatever business you forgot to sort out in January anyway.

The current transfer system is ridiculous, filled with loopholes, and the windows do nothing but drive up prices and feed a media frenzy twice a year.

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Of course, we are treated to the obligatory scenes of Harry Redknapp hanging out his car window as he informs the waiting Sky reporter and the nation just what business he hopes to conduct before the 11pm window shuts.

Then there are the groups of supporters, who you rarely see at games, but take the chance of getting seen on camera by congregrating behind the sports journalist.

Guerning, rude insults, and the impromptu chanting by ‘fans’ does nothing to improve Sky’s coverage. Worse comes when the reporter tries to engage in conversation with said ‘fans’.

Maybe I have just spent too many of these transfer windows glued to my screen hoping that my team would finally sign a player I had actually heard of, never mind if he is any good.

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Maybe I am just a bit cynical of it, the hype ruining the day.

All too often it is all an anti-climax and you sit there thinking ‘I am definitely not staying up until 11pm next year just to go through that all over again’.

But we probably will, and on Monday I will be refreshing website windows, monitoring Twitter, and even tuning in to see if Sky’s now-famous Jim White can pull off a transfer exclusive, like a magician pulling a rabbit out of a hat.

What you can bank on, though, is phrases like ‘the clock is ticking’ will engulf Monday evening.

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Another banker is that Steve Evans will need a couple of days to recover. The Rotherham United manager just loves to wheel and deal in the transfer market and this month is no dfferent with players coming and going from the New York Stadium. It is a policy which might not suit every manager, but it quite clearly has worked for Evans.

So, if I was compiling a party list for Monday, Steve would be off it as he would be sat in the kitchen on his phone all night while Harry would be holed up in his car looking for the Sky reporter.

No, looks like it will just be a party-for-one in the Hercock house as I look forward to another night of training ground footage, a frenzied media and dashed dreams.