Brumour: A breaking rumour.
But, but, but! Who is going to score all their goals next season? Tell me that, dammit! It is being rumoured that Zlatan Ibrahimovic, the man who carried Manchester United on his shoulders for most of last season (according to Zlatan and his agent) has played his last game for the club. Having said at various points throughout the season, “we want Zlatan to stay” Jose Mourinho has performed the kind of u-turn (insert your own political punchline here folks) would have been proud of. With Zlatan out the way, does that mean Jose will turn to Marcus Rashford to lead the line? Of course not, he’s going to spend anything in and around £80m on either Alvaro Morata or Andrea Belotti of Torino. In other United news, Jose’s hotel room costs £816 a night. A night! When I used to visit Manchester in my student days, you could buy a house up there for that. It makes me feel slightly less sorry for Jose, after he said last season about feeling lonely living in a hotel. Take a slightly smaller room Jose, and then spend the money you’ve saved on getting out to the cinema or something.
Diego Costa has had a bad couple of days. Firstly, running to Dad and saying Mum hasn’t been very nice to him didn’t work. Roman Abramovich is believed to have “100% backed” Antonio Conte’s hardline stance with the pain-in-the-ass-yet-very-talented striker. However, Roman’s strong and stable position means that millions have been wiped off the value of Costa as clubs now circle Stamford Bridge hoping to get the frontman at a discount. Maybe China don’t read the local press, and will still offer £100m for him?
Moral guardians of the football world, Southampton FC, are believed to be hanging around Tommy Tuchel’s house on the off-chance they bump into him and on the off-chance he might say “got any work going, lads?” That would mean that they have categorically not spoken to any other managers whilst they have a manager in a job and therefore could not be labelled as completely hypocritical in any way, shape or form.
On the other side of the tapping up scandal are Liverpool. It occurred to me earlier today the irony of being caught tapping up players, yet still not winning anything. I think they might be doing it wrong.
Leicester City have seen enough of Craig Shakespeare at the helm to decide he is the captain their ship needs. I think we’ve all seen this before – caretaker comes in, does alright, is clearly a nice cheap option, gets sacked and spends Christmas watch the TV hoping another job comes up soon. We shall see whether Craig Shakespeare is just another Mike Phelan quite soon, I would imagine.
Having realised that the M Pellegrino that applied for their managerial vacancy wasn’t the former Manchester City boss, Crystal Palace are thought to be in talks with Frank de Boer about him taking over at Selhurst Park. I can only assume this is Frank’s attempt to remind people he would still like to manage in the Premier League, whilst throwing Southampton the glad-eye from a distance.
In 2017, nothing makes a brumour more real than one player liking a tweet about another player joining a club. Yes, that’s right folks – Thomas Lemar to Tottenham Hotspur is ON because Sidibe liked something on social media that linked the two. It’s a done deal, I am sure you’d agree.
Henry Onyekuru has said he will snub a move to a big club as he would rather play every week, news to Arsene Wenger’s ears as that leaves Arsenal prime favourites to sign the lad. With all of the other Arsenal targets being linked to far bigger clubs who are prepared to pay the full asking price for their targets, Wenger will no doubt be left doing some panic buying as Jim White starts putting on his yellow tie.
Newcastle United have finally got a decent result in London, winning the first leg of their battle with the HMRC. They’ll need to continue that kind of away form if they have any hope of staying up this season. Staying in the North East, though I doubt David Moyes stayed in Sunderland for too long after “resigning” because, well, why would he? Moyes has been fined £30,000 by the FA for his “slap comments” towards the end of last season.
Finally today, Paul Merson. Oh yes, Paul Merson. Clearly fuelled by the fact that he wasn’t completely wrong about Marco Silva not being able to save Hull City, he has now claimed that David Luiz has been found out in the Premier League. What’s that Merse? Found out to be a much improved defender? Found out to be a Premier League winner, again? Found out to be the perfect professional who never causes his manager a moment’s grief off the pitch? Oh, you didn’t mean that, did you…