That comes from a site bearing the “Fansided” logo meaning it is part of the operation of Minute Media based in Chicago. They go on to say, “It’s not looking promising for Arsenal at the moment.”
So one may ask, on what is this based? We are top of the league by five points, and looking rather smart in our tactics. But no, the publisher turns out to have found one report in Calciomercato, a news source as unreliable as the Daily Mirror, which claims with absolutely no evidence whatsoever, that AC Milan are prepared to enter “the race” for Gabriel Martinelli in January.
“It is thought the speedy Brazilian attacker is on Barcelona’s radar,” they add for good measure.
Now AC Milan are a club with debts of two thirds of a billion pounds who are desperately trying to get these debts under control. So what makes anyone think that Milan a) might be able to raise the money to buy Martinelli, b) Arsenal might be tempted to sell the player and c) Martinelli might move to a club who are eight points off the top of the league from a club that is five points clear at the top of the league?
Besides which, there is absolutely no guarantee that Milan will be able to pay Martinelli’s wages.
And it is not as if Martinelli’s contract is about to expire. It runs to 2024, with an option of an extension by the club. Does anyone think a) he would prefer to move to a club in dire financial straits, or b) they would be able to raise the capital to pay the money Arsenal could legitimately demand?
Besides which once again, if we are going to believe the tittle tattle about football why buy into this story when in fact The Top Flight recently reported that Gabriel Martinelli was one of three Arsenal stars who were closing to signing new deals.
Now I am not saying that “The Top Flight” is a highly reliable source of information – it might be, I really don’t know – but the fact that the Martinelli to Milan story looks bonkers and the Martinelli to sign a new contract looks sane, does give us a clue.
Beside which, Martinelli knows what it is like to deal with a rag bag club with no idea where it is going or what it is doing. He had a number of trials with Manchester United (the media is unsure how many but probably somewhere between four and eight) and they still turned him down.
Ah but there is Barcelona also. Yes Barcelona, the club that has just sold 35% of their income from LaLiga television rights for the next 25 years. Sixth Street stand to make €41.4m annually from the deal. And Barcelona – well they’ve managed to register this year’s players but are not utterly and totally bust.
One comment made in the report is that, “With names such as AC Milan and Barcelona being thrown around, it is easy for any player’s head to be turned. It should be a priority, therefore, for Arsenal to pin the Brazil superstar down to a new contract, to put the squad at ease for the remainder of the season.”
But hang on, players are influenced by their agents, and agents don’t allow their charges to be signed up to dodgy deals over a number of years that won’t be fulfilled because… agents get their 15% from the deal as well. If the transfer money to Arsenal from Barcelona doesn’t come through, then the agents don’t get paid, and so…Well, the phrase “mindless gibberish” seems worth dusting down and rolling out one more time.