Date:Monday February 6 2006
Craig Levein should not be viewed as a complete failure as Leicester City's manager because while he underperformed in collecting points he was a champion in building assets.
A summer time fans survey last year suggested Leicester City's playing squad was worth £3m/£4m by most estimations.
Now there is a good case for claiming that those assets have tripled to around £11.5/£12m which is a fairly dramatic advance in six months.
Much is due to the emergence of young defenders Richard Stearman and Paddy Mccarthy who have established themselves as regular Man-of-the-Match standard performers.
Then there is Matty Fryatt who has quickly shown that he can score goals in a higher division to the one where he finished top scorer at Walsall for two seasons - and predatory goalscorers are a valuable commodity.
There are other young players who would push the overall squad valuation up considerably, plus slightly more senior emerging players like Chris O'Grady and Paddy Kisnorbo.
Add on the likes of Iain Hame and Stephen Hughes at, say £0.5m each and, without detailing precise values for each player the sum finishes close to £12m, even at lower estimates and not counting the considerable add ons which would almost inevitably be built into and agreed transfer.
Craig Levein may not be remembered for his success on the field. But, unlike others who have been shown the exit door, he might rightly be appreciated for his astuteness in building assets.
Perhaps his compensation pay-off, whatever it was, should not be begrudged after all.
Value-added Levein might be a suitable epitaph.
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