Will anyone believe this headline if it appeared in today’s media? “Ferguson ready to make £46m bid for Diego Forlan” Of course not! Change the name from Forlan – or any other, to Ibrahimovic and the question will become just as ridiculous.
Have another look at the precise headline ‘Manchester United Ready to Make Record Breaking £46m Bid for Barcelona Star: Ferguson to Enter Zlatan Ibrahimovic Race’. Note that United is not considering or even believed to be, but presented as an established FACT that the club is ‘ready to make a £46m bid’
Of the hundreds of transfer rumors reported during the last month or so THAT has to be the most insulting one to football fans intelligence. Granted Sir Alex Ferguson has been linked with a myriad of top notch forwards and he may well be after a new goalscorer to share Wayne Rooney’s burden but common sense will also suggest that a move for the 28 year old giant striker would in all probability have never even entered his head.
So where do such stories originate from? The report goes on to say that David Villa’s move to Barcelona brings into question the future of the Swedish strikers position at the club and when coupled with rumours that Ferguson was looking to offload Dimitar Berbatov, an opening may possibly exist for Ibrahimovic. Is it too cynical to suggest that the players own agent may have engineered the whole story in order to drum up interest in the Swede?
If that was the case, Ferguson would have taken much of the wind out of his sails by now insisting that Berbatov will not be leaving Old Trafford. Sir Alex has described the Bulgarian as “a fantastic footballer and he’ll be with us next year” Berbatov has failed to live up to expectations since arriving from Tottenham and there had been suggestions that Ferguson had lost patience with him and could be ready to cash in.
Nothing could be further from the truth however with the United boss making it clear that Berbatov is firmly in his plans for next season. “That’s a problem with a club like United, there’s expectation and the media attention is always there” he admitted “There’s speculation every year, some summers I’m signing 100 players. You’ve got to live with that sort of media hype about the club. There’s been a bit about Berbatov in terms of his future but we know he’s a good player”
The enigmatic Berbatov himself claims he has no intention of leaving what he describes as ‘the best club in the world’ and is getting fed up with answering the same questions “My goal is to remain with United and to see out my contract with the club. I know I have the qualities to do so, by joining Manchester United I have achieved everything I wanted”
“I want to ask why every second question I get asked is about where I am going next year, I wonder why the media don’t wish me luck for my next season with United?” he asked. Not an unreasonable question but as can be seen from the Ibrahimovic story, the media is far more interested in a good headline than it is in presenting real substance.
Has Ferguson made the right decision in hanging on to Berbatov?