It disappeared almost as soon as it was published – and little wonder! In a summer where some of the craziest stories have seen the light of day, the headline “Manchester United in bid for Liverpool’s Fernando Torres” has to be as wild as it can possibly get. There can only ever be one other which will ever surpass it and even in the wildest of dreams, a story claiming that “Hodgson wants Gary Neville at Anfield” can never even begin to be imagined
Sir Alex Ferguson and Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson have been known to share a bottle of red in the past but even their long friendship can never be used to broker such unlikely deals between the two clubs. Some transfers can simply never take place. It has almost got to the stage where sensational stories like the Torres one are completely ignored by anyone with the slightest shred of responsibility until some credibility can be attached to them.
A quick search soon revealed that the story was sourced from a couple of the usual, totally unreliable suspects, until a mention was also found on the normally highly respected Guardian online newspaper! The whole thing is totally incomprehensible. This summer has been notorious for stories like this appearing in the media. Maybe it’s the emergence of the hundreds of club blogs which have sprung up all over the net or it could be the huge pressure on sports journalists to be first in breaking a story. It may also be the hundreds of players offered to clubs by agents hoping to hit the jackpot with a big money deal.
The official Manchester United club site has been running a “Transfer Gossip” column for the last couple of months and the running total so far shows rumours of 86 players coming to Old Trafford for an estimated £1.578billion – (NOTE: Billion) and 19 going out for approximately £174million, including loans and swaps. And how many of those has Sir Alex snapped up? NONE! Not a single one with his last signing being that of Mexico international Javier Hernandez back in April. So much for the gossip and rumours flying around!
One final note about the speculation surrounding Torres’ possible departure from Anfield. While he is without doubt one of the hottest properties on the market, new Inter Milan boss Rafa Benitez must know the player better than anyone yet while he has made it known that he desperately wants to take midfield enforcer Javier Mascherano to the San Siro, there has not been one single whisper of any desire to bid for his former hotshot striker. Why?
There may be many reasons including the huge transfer fee demanded by Liverpool but there could be another which is almost unmentionable. The frequent times spent together in the Anfield medical rooms may have given Benitez an accurate knowledge of the chronic injuries suffered by Torres – and he does not like it one little bit. Possible? Just a little food for thought.
Should Ferguson even consider making a bid for Torres?