As we roll ever closer to the busy Christmas schedule, clubs are already hovering around the transfer market wondering what they’re going to spend their ‘Santa money’ on. With each fresh injury comes more and more ridiculous transfer rumours and Transfer Nonsense is going to be there to lap up every sodden bit of gossip.
While we’ve been away, you might have enjoyed the idea of Steven Gerrard returning to further soil his reputation as an Anfield messiah, Andrea Pirlo taking himself back to Italy with Inter and a host of other MLS stars supposedly looking to keep their oars in for their national teams over the ‘off-season’. Unfortunately Landon Donovan‘s retired so Everton aren’t being linked with anyone.
When it comes to the inevitable and desperate attempts to find a proven goalscorer to keep you in the league, spare a thought for Charlie Austin who is likely to be pulled in more directions than Stretch Armstrong in the New Year but has stated a preference not to be scrapping over relegation and earn himself a reputation as the next DJ Campbell et al. That’s bad news for Newcastle United, Aston Villa and Bournemouth who all want to sign him for exactly that reason.
Speculation that Newcastle might not be in the mess they are had they just stumped up Austin’s asking price in the summer has proved unfounded since the rest of their team is utter dross too. They’d like to buy some players to address that but it would be unfair to name names of professionals who are just trying to earn an honest living without being linked to anything as seedy as six months at St. James’ Park.
North of the border all of the rumours surround Dundee United trying to arrest their slide by – shock horror – bringing in players. Free agent and professional injury-haver Gavin Gunning (who couldn’t even get a three year deal from Kilmarnock) has already returned to Tannadice and Mixu Paatelainen is also looking to bring in former Killie star Alexei Eremenko after his side, Jaro, were relegated.
An aside for the managers and scouts of any top level clubs reading this (no? no-one?), Dundee United have told Darko Bodul that he can leave should he be able to find another club. He hasn’t scored in ages and couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn. Usual buyers Celtic probably won’t even be interested in that attractive prospect since they’ve already got Carlton Cole.
One striker that the Bhoys are keen on is St. Pauli forward Lennart Thy who is out of contract at the end of the season. If Celtic want to get him early, they’ll have to stump up between £1 million and £2 million which should set alarm bells ringing around the East End of Glasgow.
Of course, the hottest ticket in town is to Cristiano Ronaldo‘s oiled-up goals party. He’s told Real Madrid that either Rafa Benitez goes, or he does and some papers have taken this as a suggestion that he’s on his way to Old Trafford since Real are always so loyal to their managers.
Louis van Gaal stated an interest in bringing him to Man United at the weekend but given that they supposedly want Gareth Bale and Neymar too, it seems like they might just be desperate for someone to put the ball in the back of the net.