The transfer window slammed shut in January and it won’t formally open again until July, yet that doesn’t seem to matter much to journalists.
If you read the back pages of the Sun, the Daily Mail, the Express, the Guardian, the Independent, the Metro, the Evening Standard and pretty much every other bog standard ‘news’ outlet, a big club is lining up a big swoop for a big star that, of course, will probably never happen.
Even if it does happen in July, that’s not really news, that’s a rumour – a pre-emptive one at that – I find it very hard to believe that whilst there are still a minimum of eight games to play this season, that managers and clubs are already lining up transfer targets, never mind leaking their plans to the press.
Some of these rumours are not only far too early that they are, in effect, pointless speculation but, more than that, they’re completely absurd.
This morning it’s ‘Cech wanted by Arsenal’ or so claim the Daily Mail despite there being no source named whatsoever in the ‘story’ that suggests Arsenal intend to bid for Chelsea’s number one goalkeeper.
Firstly, Arsenal already have a number one goalkeeper in Wojciech Szczesny and despite him being dropped to the bench I don’t see Arsene Wenger taking the number one shirt from the 22 year old who has the potential to be a world-class stopper, especially after having shown so much faith in him thus far.
Likewise, why on Earth would Petr Cech leave Chelsea for the Emirates? And in what world would the Blues let him leave? This story is utterly ridiculous.
Last week it was ‘Luka Modric to Manchester United’ which frankly doesn’t make much sense either. Real Madrid only just paid £33 million for the Croatian and, although he hasn’t exactly set the world on fire, I can’t see them offloading him just yet.
Even if they did sell him this summer I doubt Manchester United would have any requirement for him. Sir Alex Ferguson has only just brought in Shinji Kagawa who is a very similar player to Modric and has been developing well in the team in his first season. This is another one that is a completely pointless rumour.
So is the ‘Wayne Rooney to Paris Saint-Germain’ story, which, although it isn’t completely inconceivable like the others, is still highly unlikely.
PSG have publicly stated they have no intention of making a bid and Ferguson has stated Rooney is going nowhere. It’s like the tabloid press just stick their fingers in their ears at the press conferences and go ‘la la la la la’.
Some transfer rumours and leaks and recurring stories seem plausible sometimes – especially if they run for months on end and they make practical sense but when it’s March and the window doesn’t open for almost 4 months, fans ought to use a smidgeon of common sense when reading the back pages where transfer stories are concerned.
That common sense will tell you these stories are unsubstantiated gossip, complete fantasies, conceived of and only existing in the minds of bored and ill-educated journalists. Still, at least they’ve got some imagination.
image: © Ben Sutherland