By Walter Broeckx
Yesterday someone who writes for a another website said to me that in the last summer transfer window Arsenal had been linked with some 150 players. 150 players. Hundred and fifty that is. We bought 3 players in reality.
Compare those numbers: 150 rumours – 3 bought actually. This is pure madness. This most and for all shows how much rubbish goes around during a transfer window. One could say that they need around 50 rumours to have one correct.
But please don’t let that stop some of you from taking every rumour as true.
Apparently there are a few favourites this transfer window. And of course the same names from the last transfer window get mentioned again. This is what I could find and have read in the last hour from the last weeks:
- Mignolet from Sunderland
- Reina from Liverpool
- Iker Casillas from Real Madrid
- Baines from Everton
- Taye Taiwo from AC Milan
- Mario Gotze from Dortmund
- Nani from Manchester United
- Hatem Ben Arfa from Newcastle
- Wilfried Zaha from Crystal Palace
- Adrian Lopez from Atletico Madrid
- Fellaini from Everton
- Napoli wing-back Juan Zuniga and Colombian international
- James McCarthy from Wigan
- David Villa from Barcelona
- Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa from Montpellier
- Ferando Llorente from Bilbao
- Victor Wanyama from Celtic
- Luke Young from Plymouth
- Luke Shaw from Southampton
- Loic Remy from Marseille
- Thierry Henry on loan again.
That is 21 names so far. And we are only January 8, which happens to be the birthday of Adrian Lopez. So we wish him a new contract of course.
If they keep it up like that we will be linked with some 80 players this short transfer window. And we only have 25 places in the squad.
All jokes aside. I think the media are not doing enough. They could do better. Only 21 players linked to Arsenal. That is poor.
Why don’t they mention Lucas Biglia anymore? Don’t they know that he refused to go to the winter training camp with his team Anderlecht? He stayed in Argentina where he was for the festive period and wants to get a transfer away from the Belgium champions. So where are the rumours linking him with Arsenal? He has been linked before so why not jump on to this? And where is M’Villa in all these rumours or did I miss him?
Now in a way it could be funny, all these rumours. I usually laugh with them and shake my head and think: oh well. But the problem is that all these rumours bring expectations.
If you hear the same rumour every day over and over again it is hard to look at it as what it really is: a rumour. I admit even I have been caught on occasion when a name is mentioned I would like to see in an Arsenal shirt. But I try to keep relaxed about it and think of it as paper and website filling to sell paper and to get clicks.
Let me take David Villa as an example. I would love to see him in an Arsenal shirt. His goal scoring record is great so I would be thrilled if he would come to Arsenal. But if I had to believe the rumours from last week he would do a medical last Sunday at Arsenal. As I knew that Barcelona was playing a game last Sunday I knew this was a rumour that could be checked rather easily. And as I expected David Villa was in Barcelona that day sitting on the bench (now we really could say “beach” over there) and coming on as a substitute after 66 minutes.
Unless it was a lookalike of course. And the real David Villa was seen on Heathrow but only wearing his t-shirt as he didn’t know winters in London are a bit colder than in Barcelona?
But some people believe all these things. And then they get angry because Arsenal doesn’t make the signing public. When nothing is signed they can’t make it public of course. But some people just don’t look at it like that. It was mentioned in the paper that we will sign player X so we should sign him. No matter what. Wenger and Gazidis cock it up again by losing the player at the last second.
The rumours create expectation and when they don’t get materialised those people get angry and start shouting and abusing the club and the people that are responsible for the transfers. And yet there is no evidence at all that the club ever was interested in those players or wanted them at all.
I usually try to stay as far away from the internet and transfer rumour madness as I can. If it wouldn’t have been for this article I wouldn’t have visited those sites (and I only did a few so it could be that we have been linked with even more names) because I don’t want to help them in their search for clicks.
I think we all know that Arsenal does their business as far away from the publicity as can be. It is only when a player by accident says something that you can imagine that there might be something going on. But all those “it is reported that” or “a source said that” are things that we can best ignore.
Ignore because there is a 98% chance that it is rubbish. Ignore because it will raise false hope. And ignore because it will bring you down if your favourite transfer target doesn’t come.
The only thing that you can rely on is the Arsenal website. And maybe reading it you can see a few things. First thing is that Wenger is talking about 1 or 2 signings in public. That is already something. You can be sure that they are working on some deals.
And also Wenger saying that he expects that there will be most of all an internal English market. So can we scrap the foreign names? Is he looking at players at an English club?
Or is Wenger putting us on the wrong foot? Time will tell. Just keep calm, after all we are the Arsenal.
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