By Sir Hardly Anyone
When I was invited to write a piece on the silliest transfer rumours so far this summer I didn’t actually think I would be taking them all from one source, for I searched low, high, and then even lower to find the most ludicrous tales.
But two things happened. I found I only had to look at one day’s worth of transfer stories to have more than enough tales. And when I looked again I found all except one of these stories came from exactly the same source.
It wasn’t my plan – honest – but that is how it turned out.
Rumour 1: Xaver Schlager
Xaver Schlager says Arsenal are his ‘dream club’.
“The 21-year-old Austria international midfielder only completed a €14.5m switch from Red Bull Salzburg to Wolfsburg last month, but he’s already seemingly thinking ahead.”
So there it is – apparently he wants to leave a few weeks after signing. I know footballers can be stupid but is it really likely that a player who has just signed would suggest that he actually wants to be somewhere else?
These days players have minders, and by and large no, they don’t say this sort of thing. And even if this guy did – it is still a bonkers story as it is clearly irrelevant to today – and the piece was circulated as being a current transfer rumour.
Rumour 2: Former Crystal Palace chairman backs Wilfried Zaha to complete Arsenal transfer
Zaha Transfer Watching has now become a degree subject at the University of Certain Things, and clearly the students still engaged in studies will be receiving a lecture on how “Former Crystal Palace chairman Simon Jordan believes the time is right for the Eagles to sell Wilfried Zaha.”
So he is the former chairman, with nothing to do with the club now. And as the piece says, “London rivals Arsenal have already had a £40million offer turned down for Zaha by Palace, who are reportedly holding out for £80million for their star man.”
So what makes Jordon think Arsenal will get their man. Actually he doesn’t.
“Arsenal are not playing properly,” Jordan told talkSPORT. “I don’t think they played particularly properly when they bought Ian Wright in 1991, and I don’t think they are playing properly now for different reasons.
“If they can afford to pay £27million for a player and send him back on loan, they can afford to play £60 (million or) £70 million for Wilfried Zaha.”
“Is it the right time for Palace and Zaha? I think it probably is, in a perverse way. Because Palace are now becoming a side that are really built around Zaha and I don’t think for the long-term benefit of Crystal Palace they can afford to rely simply on Zaha.“
OK so because Arsenal bid £27m for one player they can offer £70m for another, except that FoLo has been telling us all summer the maximum budget for Arsenal is £45m.
3 A new goalkeeper
According to an exclusive from Read Aston Villa, Arsenal and Aston Villa are in talks over a deal for Egypt and Al Ahly goalkeeper Mohamed El Shenawy. The fee will be around £2.5m.
Really, we need another keeper?
4 Zaha again
“A new offer for Zaha is expected to come from the Gunners that will be “considerably higher” than the first bid they made of £40m. Palace rejected the offer, as they value the Ivory Coast international at around £80m. This was FoLo again
5 ‘We are a finished club’
A series such as this would not be complete without a quote from unnamed Arsenal fans, or maybe it was an Arsenal fan. Arsenal are dead in the water because it is rumoured that Everton are making a bid of £55m for Zaha.
And the logic of that is… what? That because Everton make a bigger bid, we have to as well? What about the fact that the Arsenal negotiators reckon that Zaha is only worth £40m? We still have to bid more just because Everton are alleged to have do so. So if I start a rumour that Doncaster Rovers are bidding £120m for Joe Havergo we have to bid £121m?
The source was, well, of course you have guessed it. FoLo
The media against the Arsenal
We have recently published a series of articles on the link between the Arsenal club, its supporters and the media through the ages. While we may think of disputes between fans and the club, and indeed the club and the media, as being a recent phenomenon such differences of opinion go back to the very formation of Woolwich Arsenal.
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- Why Arsenal v Glimt might be tougher than the game against Tottenham
- Is the team that passes the most, the team that gets the best results?
- Arsenal Women – Champions League last 16 draw – We get the toughest opponents