Lasse Vibe and China seem to be intrinsically linked throughout history. The couple seem to have been attracted to one another for years but have never quite made the date.
Exactly three years ago the Danish striker rejected a move to China claiming that he “didn’t’ want to be sitting around in China eating gold and noodles”. He opted for a dream move to Championship Brentford instead.
Then last summer (as discussed on the pre-season Beesotted Pride of West London Podcast breakfast after one of the Beesoted crew went out on tour to Shanghai) our Chinese sources informed us that Vibe was very close to a big money move to a Chinese Super League Team. The deal fell through at the last minute – with the Chinese transfer window closing shut earlier than the English window (on 15 July) .
The window is open once again and our Chinese sources tell us that the same Chinese club is, once again, talking to the Brentford’s talisman. After a spell on the sidelines due to injury, a run of 7 goals in 8 games will have got the vultures circling. With his contract expiring in summer and having been left out of the team against Norwich at the weekend, it’s inevitable that a bid of any magnitude will unfortunately see Vibe leave the club in the next few days.
Dean confirmed that Lasse Vibe missed today's game as he is in negotiations with another club, however he added that all parties have to agree before any move is finalised pic.twitter.com/Xl6bUYsh62
— Brentford FC (@BrentfordFC) January 27, 2018
With Brentford challenging for play-offs, the last thing that fans want to see is a successful team broken up. But this is the nature of the game we’re in unfortunately as a club with limited finances.
Ultimately, it’s Vibe’s call. He will be making the moves. And he will no doubt see a call to China (or wherever) on £30k plus a week as a final big move that will sort him and his family out for life.
If – and only if – this team (or any team mind you) comes in for him and bids enough money to satisfy Brentford’s valuation, they will then have to offer the Danish striker enough money for him to walk away half-way through a season when he is starting to fire on all cylinders. Carry on scoring at Brentford and he will raise his head over the parapet for a place in the Danish World Cup Squad. We’re not quite sure he will get the same kudos (with the utmost of respect) scoring in China.
Maybe after the Danish National Team manager claimed that he wanted to reward the players who got Denmark to the final, Vibe ruled out any chance of getting into the Danish World Cup squad – deciding to concentrate on securing his financial future instead. In Alan Judge’s recent interview with the Sunday Times, he spoke with regret not accepting a couple of deals which would see him playing Premier League football now.
“A Premier League side contacted me and my agent and we agreed a deal, which the club here knew about. It wasn’t behind their back. That was two or three days before I broke my leg” Alan Judge
Maybe this has been playing on Vibe’s mind. An opportunity comes. You miss the boat. That opportunity comes again. You grab it with both hands.
The other option is that Brentford rejects the bid or Vibe decides to stay for another six months, and he walks on a free transfer.
Have Brentford got a two or three million to burn (because that would be the figure being banded about by his Chinese suitors surely to allow negotiators to take place)? Lets be realistic. That’s just not the way the club operates.
If he does go (and he could go anywhere as nothing is set in stone until the last hour of the last day of the transfer window. Ask Harry Redknapp) then, just like last season, we will have to trust the Directors of Football and Dean Smith to have filled that void. Emilano Marcondes was signed in summer and would have been brought into the squad earlier if Vibe left that window.
As it is, he stayed on in Denmark and became top scorer over there this season. But as we all know, acclimatising to the English game takes time. Vibe took nearly a whole season before he got his shooting boots on (Sat April 2 away at Nottingham Forest was when he got really got motoring). So Emiliano may not be the immediate answer.
At the moment, fans are a tad worried that we are losing an important cog in our machinery – disappointing with the team within sniffing distance of the playoffs. The DoFs will immediately point to the panic when Andre Gary and Scott Hogan left. The fans would argue that when both these players left, the team was not firing themselves towards the top six of the Championship so the pressure was not as great as it is now to deliver.
The current replacement – Neal Maupay- is a different type of player to Vibe and although he shows potential, still does not currently have the same killer instinct as the Danish striker. He gets lots of chances (one chance every 31 minutes compared to Lasse Vibe’s one chance every 26 minutes and Ollie Watkins one chance every 43 minutes). However, he needs to up his score-rate and he lacks that off-the-ball movement that causes mayhem in defences which creates gaps for other players to score. Maybe it may take him 9 months. Or 18 months. To acclimatise.
Saying that, there are other replacements. Ollie Watkins. Emiliano Marcondes. Sergi Canos maybe. Even Justin Shaibu – who has been injured for a great part of this season. All not ‘Lasse Vibe’ as such. But players who would have to step up to the plate if we decided that this was their role.
Lets see how this one pans out. It’s never over ’til it’s over. Brentford fans would all love Lasse to stay. But that looks increasingly unlikely now.
He’s been a massive part of the post-Championship playoff Brentford team built up from the embers of the side that got us promoted from Division One. And if Brentford could be guaranteed a next bite at Championship playoff action, there’s no doubting Vibe would love to be involved.
But nothing is guaranteed. And it looks like Vibe isn’t up for the gamble.
If he goes, he will be missed.
But giving a fan’s rose tinted view on the rest of our season, wouldn’t it be just wonderful if made a last minute decision that he would like to have one last roll of the dice and play a key role in Brentford’s next Championship-playoff team?
Wouldn’t it just.
For more info on Brentford’s ongoings and outgoings this transfer window, including one imminent transfer the Beesotted have been chatting to our African sources about, check out this week’s Transfer Deadline Day Beesotted Pride of West London Podcast (recorded Weds night, live Thursday 7am)
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