I find it almost impossible to dislike Glenn Murray. On the contrary, I still like him. Quite a lot. And I thoroughly enjoyed watching his first Premier League goal on Sunday. The hysterical logic of football fans dictates that when one of your best players leaves you for your biggest rival then the mercenary, big-shot douchebags should be consigned forever to our list of enemies. But I don’t think I am the only one to disagree with this in the case of Glenn.
It’s hard to explain exactly why I don’t feel ill will towards Glenn. It could probably be argued that he played with our feelings in a small way, first with the claim that if he was to leave, it would be return to his native north. Croydon might seem like a drab outpost akin to a slightly bigger Carlisle or Rochdale, but northern it is not. Secondly, he did say in his final season with us that he’d be up for staying and intended to discuss a new contract.
However, this is where our club comes in. It is widely documented that Palace not only offered higher wages than us (hardly a surprise), but also a longer contract. From T Bloom’s position, it is pretty clear that our number 1 transfer target that summer was CMS. It was a gamble, but also a potentially big statement to replace one of the better strikers in League 1 with the best one. We were a club with ambition that was going places. This is not to lay any blame at anyone’s door for the fact that Glenn and CP are now Premier League and we are not. Weird things happen in football.
Anyway, back to Glenn. In his final season with us, he operated as the gnarly spearhead of a quite stunning team. Superb goals were paired with some of the most complete striking performances I have seen in my time as an Albion fan. It was probably the only year in which he appeared completely happy in the blue and white stripes. Previously, we saw glimpses of a smile as he put two past Southampton, a brief escape from desolation as he scored a last minute equaliser at Northampton, and various other sudden bursts of unmisery. He was just one of those players though, with various intangible qualities that endeared us all to him.
However, on the whole, there was always the impression that he was never completely happy. Clearly a complex character, Glenn had needs that, in the end, could not be met by BHAFC. He is now fit again and is operating at his highest level yet. We would all rather he was doing it for someone else, but it is good to see Glenn Murray happy.
Article by @EdwardWoodhouse