Coventry City

‘Razzmatazz’ transfer deal helping signal Coventry City’s return to the big time

Coventry City comment from CoventryLive as Sky Blues reporter Andy Turner reflects on the glamour and razzmatazz of the club being back in the transfer big time while bidding a fond farewell to Sporting Lisbon’s new signing Viktor Gyokeres

Viktor Gyokeres of Coventry City
Outgoing striker Viktor Gyokeres certainly made his mark on Sky Blues fans

The glitz and razzmatazz surrounding Viktor Gyokeres’ arrival at Sporting Lisbon yesterday if there was ever a sign of how far Coventry City have gone over the last six years.

It had a big-time vibe about it, with a private jet and media throng waiting to welcome and swarm the departing Sky Blues striker at the airport. And so it should, given the mutually agreed-upon record fees for both clubs: Sporting paid over £6.5 million more than the £13.6 million they paid for Paulinho in 2021, while City received £20 million, the highest sum they have received since pocketing £13 million when Robbie Keane was transferred to Inter Milan in 2000.

It’s a far cry from the summer of 2018, when Marc McNulty’s move to Reading for an undisclosed sum—reportedly £1.2 million increasing to £1.5 million for the 28-goal League Two striker stepping up to the Championship—dominated the Sky Blue headlines.

A low-key unveiling at the Madejski Stadium with the customary holding of a Royals’ scarf in the air pose and another sat in the seats with a ball in his hands after weeks of ‘will he, won’t he’ speculation about his future. When he cleared immigration, there was no press pack flurry of excitement, no rapid-fire camera flashes, and no in-your-face TV reporters pursuing him along hallways; just a simple “welcome to Reading.”

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Gyokeres, on the other hand, is anticipated to sign a five-year contract today after passing his medical. It is said that the contract contains a 100 million euro release clause. According to the Portuguese press, he will make an estimated £38,000 per week from a reported £2.1 million annual income (gross).

All that’s left to do now is bid Vik a warm farewell, thank him for the memories, and wish him the best of luck in his future career. City fans have had ample time to get used to the thought that he would be going this summer.

At every club, players come and go, but few make a lasting impression on the fans; the majority are swiftly forgotten. However, many supporters witnessed one of the best center forwards to don a Sky Blues jersey since the team’s Premier League days in Gyokeres.

His late solo goal in a 2-0 CBS Arena victory over Wigan, when he received a pass from Josh Eccles inside his own half, turned sharply, and then outran three defenders as he forcefully drove the ball forward 60 yards before unleashing a stunning low right-foot shot into the bottom left corner, stands out among his many wonderful goals.

Even though the caliber and size of the opposition were not comparable, it was nevertheless an exciting Darren Huckerby vs Manchester United moment and an unforgettable goal.

Even if it’s difficult to say goodbye to prominent players and lose their undeniable qualities, it’s a necessary aspect of the game of football. While he will be missed, he is not irreplaceable, and in Ellis Simms, City have a talented young player who has many of the same qualities as Vik and can fill his shoes.

Despite the disappointment, we must not lose sight of the reality that £20 million represents a fantastic return on the player’s investment of over £1 million made by City when they acquired him from Brighton just two summers prior. That sum, less Albion’s portion from a sell-on clause, should go a long way toward assisting Mark Robins in bolstering his team.

Owner Doug King is a driven individual who understands that in order to realistically accomplish his objectives, he must spend in players. So far, so good: Everton received £3.5 million for Simms, and Tatsuhiro Sakamoto, a relative unknown, received £1.2 million. Given that City paid £1.3 million for Gustavo Hamer three years ago, the latter seems to be a big amount, and if he proves to be even remotely as excellent as the Brazilian-born favorite, it will be money well spent.

Gyokeres’ exit was finally finalized today, but it’s time to move on and anticipate the upcoming players who will leave their stamp at the team amid hopefully even more exciting times.

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