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Joe Mason says move to Swindon Town was not right for him

By This is Devon  |  Posted: January 31, 2011

SWINDON  MOVE WAS NOT RIGHT
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PLYMOUTH Argyle striker Joe Mason has revealed he did not find it a difficult decision to turn down the chance of a transfer to Swindon Town.

The financially-stricken Pilgrims accepted an offer, thought to be £300,000, for Mason

from their League One rivals after snubbing two previous bids.

But 19-year-old Mason, born and bred in Plymouth, opted to stay at Home Park.

Swindon are seeking to add firepower to their squad after selling star striker Charlie Austin to Championship club Burnley.

Mason told The Herald: "To be honest, it wasn't a difficult decision to make.

"I'm sure Swindon are a really good club, but I have been at Argyle since I was 11 and if I'm going to leave I want to make sure it's the best possible move for me.

"It has got to be worth moving away from Argyle, and from Plymouth, for.

"I know the club needs money badly, but I had to think about myself. At the end of the day, it's my career and I didn't feel it was the right move for me."

Had Mason signed for Swindon, the transfer fee for him would have been paid up front. That would have allowed the Pilgrims to clear their tax debts arrears to HM Revenue and Customs.

In turn, that would have seen a transfer embargo on them lifted by the Football League.

Instead, Argyle manager Peter Reid is still prevented from signing any players on loan before the transfer window slams shut at 11pm tonight.

But Reid was still pleased Mason had decided not to leave for Swindon.

Reid said: "I'm happy about it. I understand the predicament the club is in, though, so maybe I'm being selfish."

He added: "Joe is a young footballer who I think has got a real chance."

Mason did not play in Argyle's 2-1 defeat by Bournemouth at Home Park on Saturday because he was still ruled out by an ankle injury.

He did the damage when the Pilgrims won 3-1 away to MK Dons on January 18.

Mason sat out the 2-0 defeat at Charlton Athletic four days later, and had to watch from the stands at Home Park on Saturday.

The Pilgrims' prospect is unlikely to be fit for the trip to Yeovil Town tomorrow.

But Mason expects to be available for selection when Argyle travel to Brentford at the weekend.

He said: "I think tomorrow might come a bit early for me, but I will definitely be alright for Saturday."

Argyle were beaten by second-placed Bournemouth after failing to make the most of the numerous chances they created.

Reid admitted his side had missed the finishing prowess of Mason.

He said: "For a young man, he has a clear head in those situations. It doesn't faze him.

"I thought we snatched at a few chances. We just needed a bit of composure.

"In general play, I didn't think we missed him but, in terms of finishing, possibly we did. He's not bad at those chances."

Argyle have sold Craig Noone, Reda Johnson, George Donnelly and Bradley Wright-Phillips during the January transfer window.

Left-back Onismor Bhasera had also seemed set to sign on loan for Premier League club Blackpool last week.

But the deal to take him there until the end of the season collapsed on Friday.

Blackpool, managed by former Pilgrims' boss Ian Holloway, were prepared to pay a six figure loan fee for Bhasera.

And they would have had the first option to sign him on a permanent transfer in the summer.

But Bhasera has a knee injury at the moment and The Herald understands Blackpool did not want to complete a deal until he was fit.

It is also thought the 24-year-old had some unresolved issues with Blackpool.

So, for the time being, Bhasera remains a member of the Pilgrims' squad, although not available for selection because of injury.

Further player departures before the 11pm deadline tonight cannot be ruled out.

There has been at least one other inquiry about Mason, but without an offer being made.

Argyle football consultant Peter Ridsdale was not at Home Park on Saturday for the game against Bournemouth.

Instead, he was believed to be working on a 'plan B' to rescue Argyle from financial ruin, in the event of promised funding from Japanese-based directors Yasuaki Kagami and George Synan not arriving this week.

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Plymouth Argyle director George Synan breaks his silence over club crisis

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  • Profile image for This is Devon
    Bill, Brisbane  |  January 31 2011, 9:12PM

    Brian, Plymouth- I hope you get to read this however, I first went to see Argyle in the late 50s, and have bought goods from the club store to support them over the years, but for you to say get a life to me, well, I have a life you can only dream about. The best thing I ever did was to leave Plymouth, so should Joe, but as he is staying, I repeat, listen to the manager to learn, and Brian, Argyle will struggle for years, sad to say.

  • Profile image for This is Devon
    joe h, PLYMOUTH  |  January 31 2011, 8:22PM

    @ grecian joke,shhhhhhhhhhhh,we know where you live. ARGYLE FOREVER.

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    Ben, Bristol  |  January 31 2011, 7:33PM

    A good decision for Mason I am sure. But, how pathetic that we are scraping around for what is about 1.5 weeks of John Terry's wages. If 'all' that was needed to lift the transfer embargo was £300K then it would have been nice to think that the Directors who pocketed their Yen when they sold to the cashless Japanese could have put their hands in their wallets - even as a loan.

  • Profile image for This is Devon
    Grecian Joe, Plymuff  |  January 31 2011, 7:29PM

    Tick, Tock, Tick, Tock

  • Profile image for This is Devon
    Grecian Joe, Plymuff  |  January 31 2011, 7:25PM

    What a silly boy, should of got out when the going was good. Sentimental value doesn't count in the current climate. I hear the Circus at Central Park could shortly be closing. What a shame, those clowns were something. ECFC - The Pride (R) Pride of Devon.

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    Brian, Plymouth  |  January 31 2011, 5:05PM

    Bill brisbane, I can't work which team u support because it's definitely not argyle and Joe don't listen to folk like him. For some reason or other he's playing devils advocate. U made the right decision and I firmly believe that argyle will rise again very soon. Bill, get a life

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    neil, england  |  January 31 2011, 12:46PM

    well done joe what a wonderful young man you are,now mr. reid when he is fit stick him in and play him up front as you did at huddersfield because he will score goals.

  • Profile image for This is Devon
    toby a pilgrim, London  |  January 31 2011, 11:05AM

    well done Joe loyalty is priceless and demonstrated at the right time as now is character enhancing & demands respect but I think like others here when the time is right and a big club with ambition & money ( a prem club like Gosling although he did shame himself later, or top CCC club Norwich/Leeds etc) that your talents deserve come in for you obviously you have think of your career first.

  • Profile image for This is Devon
    42, cornwall  |  January 31 2011, 10:57AM

    How refreshing! I shall paste the short report from the Herald below - which I think is awful "IT IS an indication of Plymouth Argyle's perilous predicament that the decision of a player to remain with the club could be construed as being detrimental to the Pilgrims' survival hopes. Striker Joe Mason was the subject of a transfer offer, believed to be £300,000, from Swindon Town; a fee which could have allowed Argyle to clear their tax debts, and in turn have their transfer embargo lifted. But the 19-year-old, born and bred in Plymouth, has ¿ which is his right ¿ opted to stay at the club. No criticism should be attached to Mason's decision. But if anything highlights the Mad Hatter state of football's finances, this episode must surely be it"

  • Profile image for This is Devon
    Dick, London  |  January 31 2011, 10:00AM

    Joe Mason. Good man. You just showed something money can't buy. Hang on to it.

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