By Bogus Cheese, chief correspondent.
Now I am going to have to make a bit of a confession here. You see, I ought to have put one of those question mark things in the headline, but I forgot, and well, you know, then I fancied a pizza, and by the time I got back it had gone clean out of my mind. (Rather like most of my mind).
But stop screaming for a bit, and let me tell you what is going on. Or not. As the case may be.
Today, 12 October, attention moved to Mr Lukaku after one of our readers reported that there was word on the internet that we had signed him. I checked and two sites were showing a move from the standard position of the previous months which said that the KGB were signing him, and so was virtually everyone else.
We discussed it a little at the end of the article about Wenger’s philosophy on signing players, and when I jumped in to the debate at around 2.30 pm this was the situation…
Punter’s Hero (a web site) posted this at around 10am today
Reports claim that Anderlecht have finally agreed to seel highly rated teenager Romelu Lukaku to Arsenal.The 17 year old has been linked with a host of top clubs such as Chelsea, Real Madrid and Barcelona since breaking into the Anderlecht first team in 2009.
Lukaku has been hailed as the next Drogba as was even snapped at Stamford Bridge wearing a Chelsea shirt earlier this year.
It now seems Arsenal have signed the striker for a reporters £12.5m.
Other sites are starting to pick this up, and the Daily Mail has run something like this (which probably means he is going to Andorra). General summary of commentary is that he is going to Chelsea / Real Mad / Barca / Inter / AC / Arsenal.
Who knows. But if we do get him I shall go back, edit this post, and claim you read it here first. If we don’t I shall point out that I said it was very unlikely.
So, that’s how it was running at 2.30pm.
By 3.30pm Wikipedia had changed its story to show that he had signed for us.
At 4.30pm Wiki had changed again, but of course that might well be that someone has read this site, and then nipped onto Wiki and changed it. As of 1618 BST Wiki is showing this on the young man’s page
As of October 12th 2010, latest rumours suggest that a deal has been agreed for the player to join Arsenal F.C. That link leads to http://www.caughtoffside.com/2010/10/11/arsenal-win-race-to-sign-12-5m-goal-machine but if you go there you will see that their headline about him going to Arsenal ends with a question mark.
By 6.30pm if you typed “Romelu Lukaku Arsenal” into Google everyone and his dog was up on the story, and it was spreading like a very angry heated thing (wildfire – geddit?)
The essence of all the reports is that everyone wanted him but we got him.
And so I decided to jump in with this little piece on the grounds that was the essence of today’s story: The Philosophy of Wenger: the approach to transfers. Young players choose Arsenal because of the work that has been done at every level in the club. Wenger, the coaching, the backup staff, the history of bringing players through…
It all fits, see? I write a piece, Wenger takes note, and next thing you know, we have the player.
So, what do we know about the young man?
Romelu Lukaku was born 13 May 1993 in Antwerp, Belgium, just down the road from our pal Walter Broeckx – who it will undoubtedly turn out has fixed this deal, or not, as the case may be. He (Romelu not Walter, although in fact Walter as well now I think of it) is Belgian, and until we hear the official word, plays for Anderlecht and Belgium. Indeed he started playing for Anderlecht at 16 and 11 days.
He scored on average on goal per game as a kiddie, and one story that is on every site that speaks about him is that one season he scored 206 goals in one season. Maybe.
He is the third youngest player to score in a UEFA competition at 16 years 218 days.
Now I am not one to approve of all these silly rumour type things, but wouldn’t it be amusing if the Sun, Star, Mirror, and the rest saw my headline here, didn’t bother to read anything else, and then ran the story.
The door to reality is situated just over your left shoulder.
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