By Sir Hardly Anyone
These days the central core of football journalism is “is it cheap?” A story that requires detailed analysis is of course expensive to put together because it takes up time. A story that requires original research is even more time consuming and thus even more expensive and thus even more disliked.
But a story that is made up or simply copied from someone else is a lot cheaper, and simply requires some imagination.
However these days most writers on football don’t even have that attribute of imagination, so the stories are repeated from elsewhere. No analysis, no research, no originality, just a rerun of someone else’s story.
Welcome to the world of transfer rumours. The cheapest form of football writing on the planet which manages to treat all fans of all clubs with equal levels of contempt. And if you want proof of this, just flip through some of the transfer stories and see how many of them are original, and how many cite another source. The answer you will probably find is around 99.9% cite another newspaper, blog or journalist as their source. No one ever admits to having done any research. And surely if they had done, they would do.
One of the tricks within this game of dirt cheap journalism and reporting is that although Arsenal don’t really need any new players the media are fixated on trying to persuade us that we do. This trick is used because if it were agreed that what with us being a mere five goals away from the Champions League, and a raft of youngsters coming through, we didn’t need anyone, the stories would be blown.
And there would be no football news.
And then the favourite post-window story of Arsenal screwing up in the market and how it is going to be a dire season is run. And that will be trotted out this summer even though Arsenal spent record sums last summer – and we sank DOWN the league rather than going up.
As our recent chart showed we just needed to score five more goals in key games and we would have been in the top four now. A side that close does not need to be disrupted.
But that doesn’t make for good news, so the invention of transfers goes on and on, along with insane stories about Arsenal paying massive pay offs to the agents and other wasteful tactics.
Here are the latest
1: NEW – Szoboszlai
Sempre Milan tell us that “Milan and Arsenal target Szoboszlai drops big hint over possible destination”. The lad is a 19 year old central midfielder who plays for Red Bull Salzburg. He has played for them 44 times so far.
2: UPDATE – Nunez
The Metro announces that Arsenal, Everton and West Ham are all “in the race to sign Athletic Bilbao’s Unai Nunez this summer, but they face competition from big clubs across Europe.”
He’s a 23-year-old centre-back and seemingly has a release clause of £27m. The player has refused to sign a new contract with Bilbao have been trying to get Nunez to sign a new contract. The Metro blames AS
3: NEW – Wout Weghorst
Wout Weghorst is a name that will get racist commentators giggling, as they like laughing at foreigners names, especially when they realise they can say Wout Weghorst from Wolfsburg. He will cost £32m.
This comes from Teamtalk who allege they got it from the Daily Express who say they got it from Bild.
The player is a Dutch striker who is tipped as the replacement for Aubameyang having scored 33 in 66 games.
5: NEW BUT NO BUT YES – Saint-Maximin
“Arsenal reach Allan Saint-Maximin transfer conclusion after Newcastle star’s hint” says the enigmatic Express. But seeming Arsenal have “no interest” in striking a deal with Newcastle despite him having “been a revelation for Newcastle in his debut season, including a hat-trick of assists in the recent 4-1 win over Bournemouth.”
So that’s a “stupid Arsenal” story then. Except The Northern Echo disagree and think Arsenal are taking a keen interest in the French winger ahead of the summer transfer window.
6: NEW Wout Weghorst of Wolfsburg
Wolfsburg striker Wout Weghorst has said he wants to “play at the “highest level” amid rumours that Arsenal want to sign him.” That is from Football 365 who also say that Wolfsburg want £32m. They blame Sport Witness for this story who blame Bild.
7: NEW 16 times over Thiago Alcantara
“Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcantara has been linked with a move away from the Bundesliga side, with Liverpool reportedly interested, but football expert Guillem Balague believes that Arsenal could also be in for the Spaniard.”
This story appears word for word in the Independent.ie, Chatsports, Newsbreak, Liverpool Echo, Football Transfer Tavern, Sportslens, RedandWhiteKop, Kicknews, KE opera News, Football News Views, Soccerladuma, Ilovemancity, Fussbol, Weinfilm, GLBNews, VBET
Now every single one of those drainpipes had exactly the same headline “Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcantara has been linked with a move” so they all copied exactly the same story from each other. As did we, except Untold actually mentioned that the same story appeared in 16 different “outlets” each using exactly the same words.
Makes you think.
8. NEW BUT ALLEGEDLY NO Armin Gigovic
Armin Gigovic is not coming our way, “The young midfielder is making a name for himself due to his impressive defensive talents. But the Sweden youth international showed his worth at the other end of the pitch during an Allsvenskan clash with Djurgarden this week.” HITC say that the lad has said “chances are I’ll stay”.
9. Not Cliff Richards
“ARSENAL WANT TO SIGN BAYERN MUNICH’S CHRIS RICHARDS, BUT HANSI FLICK DOESN’T WANT TO LET HIM GO” says HITC where seemingly the caps lock on the typewriter keyboard has got stuck.
They blame Transfermarkt who say “Arsenal are still interested in signing Bayern Munich defender Chris Richards – but signing him may be difficult. It’s claimed that Arsenal in a fiercely-contested race for Richards, with Chelsea, Valencia and one major Bundesliga side also interested.”
10 NEW Lorenzo Pellegrini
Just in case you thought Football.London had fallen off the edge of the planet they are back with this tale of a “Roma midfielder Lorenzo Pellegrini who has been linked with a move to North London, and there appear to be few better options out there.” Teamtalk, Eurofootball Rumours, Bleacher, Sports Mole, Daily Cannon, Sky Sports all blame each other for the tale.
We will add all these to the chart and publish a revised edition shortly. This is after all a record breaking season for Arsenal transfers.
- Arsenal are just five goals from being top four.
- Ticket arrangements for the new season: is Big Brother watching the fans?
- Is Santi Cazorla now outperforming EVERY Arsenal player except Aubameyang?
- What the media won’t tell you about football 5: Fifa lends money to Switzerland
- What the media won’t tell you about football, part 4 – referee variations
- The final transfer rumours: 3 new names to make 66 players tipped for Arsenal
- What the media won’t tell you about football, part 3 – referee home bias
- The real live facts that the media won’t ever touch (part 2)