Confirmation that our first Summer signing is 22 year-old German centre-half, Patrick Bauer from Portuguese side Maritimo. His transfer announcement coincided with the finality of Joe Gomez's move to Liverpool reserves for £3.5m. The undisclosed fee will be around £3m more than we will have possibly paid Maritime and will effectively settle half of our last year losses. just another £4m to recoup and Katrien will have balanced the books.
I have no problem with us selling players when we have to - everyone does it and it's part of the game. The fee for Gomez isn't bad and if there was a buyout clause in his contract, then that might not have helped us but if we had been able to hang onto him for another season he may have flourished and that fee doubled. We would have seen more of our investment in him and the club's youth policy better supported.
Many will be reconsidering their subscription to Valley Gold on the back of Joe Gomez's departure - I am. Joe managed 21 appearances for the Addicks, one more than last year's loss of Diego Poyet. Joe will be aiming to improve on Diego's three appearances for West Ham in his first season there.
With our best players from last season being auctioned off, I am reminded again about how Bournemouth managed to get promoted. They didn't break-even in their last few seasons but they didn't spend a huge fortune either. They achieved it through squad stability and strengthening with several better players each season. There is the dichotomy of having a wealthy owner with limited ambition and one who is prepared to invest in his club. The other, much more obvious difference is the quality of the football that supporters of the Investor get to watch. That, for me, is what really hurts.
Expect more burying of bad news in the coming weeks as we cash-in on who we can. The Bookies have us amongst the warm favourites for relegation. It would be great to see us prove them wrong but I am not minded to repeat my top-half season gamble of last year.