The new transfer request
‘Liverpool target Naby Keita in training-ground bust-up after horror tackle leaves Leipzig team-mate Diego Demme limping out of session’ – Daily Mail, July 24.
‘Neymar storms out of Barcelona training after bust-up’ – Daily Mail, July 28.
‘Ousmane Dembele involved in training ground bust-up after being linked with move to Barcelona’ – The Sun, August 1.
Are you a key player? Do you want a move? Forget a transfer request, a bust-up is the way forward.
Ask a simple question
At a time when his future is up in the air, there is very good traffic to be had in suggesting that Alexis Sanchez might leave Arsenal.
With that in mind, MailOnline aren’t stupid. They know that putting a headline reading ‘Judgment Day: Wantaway Sanchez flies back to London ahead of return to Arsenal… but what was he doing with his lawyer in Paris?’ on the top of their football homepage creates interest, because it hints that Sanchez has spoken to Paris St Germain.
They also know perfectly well why Sanchez was in Paris, so deliberately leaving that information out of their story is pretty poor form. They replace any actual information with ‘his brief stop-off in France has led to some fans questioning whether PSG is his next destination, while Man City supporters are still hopeful he will arrive at the Etihad.’
For the record, the Daily Telegraph have the good grace to at least explain why Sanchez was in Paris:
‘Ruben Inostroza Povea, who is Sanchez’s lawyer, uploaded a picture of the pair preparing to leave Santiago airport, Chile, on Sunday evening.
‘According to Povea’s Instagram picture, the trip included a stopover in Paris, where the forward is thought to have renewed his British work permit.’
Somehow, Mediawatch doesn’t think that a Daily Mail headline of ‘Sanchez renews work permit’ would have got quite the same traction. Who needs the truth anyway?
We started here
In the Daily Mirror, Darren Lewis is worried about Chelsea. Very worried indeed.
‘He pulled off a minor miracle last season to win the title at his first attempt,’ Lewis begins. ‘Season Two of Antonio Conte at Chelsea, however, could end up being tougher than a week at the White House.
‘They appear to be exactly where they found themselves two years ago after Jose Mourinho had led them back to the top of English football.’
Permanent Chelsea signings before the start of the season, 2015: Baba Rahman, Asmir Begovic, Nathan.
Total spend: £29m
Permanent Chelsea signings before August 1, 2017: Alvaro Morata, Tiemoue Bakayoko, Antonio Rudiger, Willy Caballero.
Total spend: £130m.
Chelsea have spent more in this transfer window than in any summer since 2003. It’s not *exactly* the same.
The lack of transfer market activity is one reason for Lewis’ Chelsea worries, but that is not the only problem. Let him explain:
‘Here in Singapore it was alarming to see the ease with which Bayern Munich toyed with our title winners during the first half of their 3-2 win. Franck Ribery ran the show. Thomas Muller, who struggled for goals last season, hit two against the Blues – one of them a screamer.’
Chelsea did indeed go 3-0 down against Bayern Munich before coming back to lose 3-2. But that would be a little easier to use as evidence of significant problems had Chelsea not gone 3-0 down against Real Madrid before coming back to lose 3-2 almost a year to the day before that the Bayern defeat.
2016/17 seemed to work out OK.
‘Revealed! How old Aguero, Lukaku and Kane will be if they break Shearer’s record’ – Talksport.
Unless Talksport have a time machine – and we’re punting that they don’t – you literally can’t ‘reveal’ that.
“Wayne is a proven goalscorer, give him a chance Wayne will score” – Ryan Giggs, June 27.
“Wayne is a proven goalscorer and scores more often than not when he gets chances” – Ryan Giggs, July 31.
Ryan Giggs, August 31: “When the f**k is Wayne Rooney going to score?”
Because apparently it’s 1973
‘GIANLUIGI DONNARUMMA may be the best young goalie in the world – but it’s his fiancee who is the real keeper. The Italian gloveman snubbed Manchester United to sign a new four-year AC Milan deal. And much to the dismay of Premier League fans, that means the chances of seeing stunning Alessia Elefante have gone out the window’ – Toby Gannon, The Sun.
1) We can still see her now, as your story evidences. We can’t only see the girlfriends of Premier League players because we live in England – that’s not how it works.
Better late than never
‘Manchester United new boy Nemanja Matic ‘fits the bill’ says Gary Neville, as former captain questions Chelsea’s decision to sell’ reads the headline on MailOnline (no relation to the Daily Mail, remember) on Tuesday morning.
Neville did indeed say that. On July 12.
An eye for detail
You may have seen, and been amused by, Sunderland midfielder Darron Gibson’s rant (we’re obliged to call it foul-mouthed) about certain individuals at the club not caring enough about recent failure.
Gibson was obviously speaking more than slightly out of turn, but Mediawatch was entertained by Sunderland’s official statement announcing that Gibson would be disciplined for his outburst.
‘Darren Gibson has not conducted himself in a manner befitting Sunderland AFC,’ the club statement said. “We will initiate our internal disciplinary process.”
Quick tip, guys: if you are disciplining a player for his accusations that people at the club are half-arsed, it’s a good idea to spell his name correctly in the official statement.
Metaphor of the day
“Darron Gibson is a renegade in a dressing room full of pirates” – Chris Sutton, BBC Radio 5Live.
Recommended reading of the day
Stuart James on Forest Green Rovers.