Not much to disagree with in your analysis, it was a good response. Bent went to Spurs for £15m which makes Downing worth at least £20m. I think we should stick out for this and if no clubs bite, hang on to him and see what happens at the end of the season. A Europlace would change matters dramatically. I take your point about Johnson and if he can step easily into Downing's boots maybe we should cash in and invest. Newspapers today are saying Scolari wants Tuncay to play in the hole and will offer £8m.in January. Again this is very much on the low side especially with Abramovich's money on offer. I think £12m at least and thats if we have to sell him. Mido is still heading for Wigan apparently which won't please the North End at all. We need a playmaker , what used to be called a midfield general in the old days, I'm not convinced Arca can fill that role but with his pedigree it should be a given. Perhaps he could go back to his left back role because Taylor has not convinced in that position for me. Lastly the old thorny problem of a regular scorer .... we still need one. I'm not sure how to read the words from Lamb et al. Is he saying we are not going to buy anymore big names because of the transfer fee or the wages?