James continues his run down of every striker signed since Darragh MacAnthony took over as chairman:
- Craig Mackail-Smith and Aaron McLean (Brighton and Hove Albion and Bradford City (Loans), 2014)
The 2014/15 season was stagnating. Something had to be done. Nobody quite expected this publicity stunt though. It was quite sad watching two half fit, yet legendary strikers trudge around in a team that had lost its way. By the time they had got up to speed, CMS was back with the Seagulls and McLean was acting assistant manager following Darren Ferguson’s dismissal. It was a bad idea looking back, with McLean contributing the duo’s sole goal in this period.
- Liam Hatch (Barnet, 2008)
Peterborough United in signing Barnet player for over inflated price shocker. He was a trier, but had very little ability, meaning his spell at the club was limited to League 2 football and two goals.
- Luke James (Hartlepool United, 2014)
He ran around a lot, and many fans were sure he’d come good. As were the Bradford fans, and the Bristol Rovers fans, and probably the Forest Green fans now. I’m struggling to muster sympathy for Pools’ and their recent financial struggles as they clearly pissed the £800,000 they robbed us of up the wall. 1 league goal for us!
- Dave Hibbert (Shrewsbury Town, 2010)
Probably would have been lower in this list had his professional career not been ended by a horrific knee injury, but I’m not that heartless.
26.Tyrone Barnett (Crawley Town, 2012)
I know plenty of Posh fans who would have Barnett 47th on this list. But controversially, I think he was alright for us, remember it’s not Ty’s fault we decided to pay 7 figures [Ed. Hmmmm] to Crawley. Was told on at least 3 separate occasions he would never play for us again yet came back every time and wasn’t too bad. Had he been signed for a sensible fee he’d be in the top 20 comfortably.
- Aaron Williams (Nuneaton Town, 2016)
Graham Westley clearly wanted a professional brick shithouse in his squad, Williams was just that. Came in and out of the club inside a year, when Graham kindly took him to Newport with him.
- Shaun Jeffers (Free Agent, 2013)
Was a placeholder alongside Britt Assombalonga while we waited for the January transfer window to open. Scored 3 goals and could have been a lot worse.
- Scott Rendell (Cambridge United, 2008)
I feel like we only signed Scott Rendell because we wanted to piss off our rivals. Scored a few goals for us, but he was distinctly non-league.
- Paul Taylor (Ipswich Town (Loan), 2013)
Taylor wasn’t fit when he was signed as the injured Lee Tomlin’s replacement. Contributed nothing. Probably should be lower but I can’t be bothered to renumber the list now.
- Tom Nichols (Exeter City, 2016)
You don’t earn the nickname Timid Tom for no reason. Top strikers put their necks on the line; Nichols barely put his studs on it. Despite finishing as the 16/17 top scorer, most fans were delighted that Bristol Rovers came in for him. The blatant lies about Posh fans booing him out of the club still grind my gears, and he’s a prized Cambridge United Northampton Town as far as I’m concerned.
- Shaq Coulthirst (Tottenham Hotspur, 2016)
Urgh. Coulthirst was one of approximately 4 replacements for Conor Washington, and despite netting a few goals, just didn’t fit in. Kudos for him for scoring against Northampton 6 weeks after Grant McCann froze him out of the squad though.
- Nicky Ajose (Manchester United, 2011)
Hopes were high for Ajose. Throughout his first preseason, stories emerged about his ‘unbelievable talent and attitude’. 7 minutes into his debut, and his Posh career was all but over. An injury followed by a mysterious tumble down the pecking order meant he left London Road in a series of loans, before rising from the dead nearly 3 years later to help consolidate a league one play off place. Remembered for his appalling facial hair.
- Saido Berahino (West Bromwich Albion (Loan), 2012)
Ran around a lot and became a fans favourite. His 2 goals in 6 weeks are Harold Shipman levels of lethalness compared to his Stoke career so far.
- Paul Taylor (Free Agent, 2017)
Signed out of desperation after Lee Angol’s leg break in preseason and Grant McCann’s realisation that none of our strikers were very good. Taylor was a shadow of his former self, although he did provide the odd moment of inspiration before he was bizarrely made a public scapegoat by his chairman towards the end of the season.
- Liam Dickinson (Brighton and Hove Albion (Loan), 2010)
On paper, he wasn’t great. But Dickinson will be remembered for providing the winner in our only away win in the omnishambles that was the 2009/10 season. A very effective target man who Gary Johnson wanted to keep for the 2010 campaign, but financial constraints scuppered that plan
30 down, 15 to go. We’re starting to get down to the relatively successful ones, but who will be number one on my list? Who have I inevitably forgotten to include? Who else has been ranked far too high/ too low? Find out in part 3