For years we’ve had the tabloids lying to us that Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale are about to leave Real Madrid and come back to the Premier League, and then when both players finally say it’s actually true, what do the Sunday papers give us the next morning? Nothing.
From the Sun on Sunday to the Sunday Express to the Sunday Daily Star Sunday or whatever it’s called, the hacks have precisely zero intel about the imminent transfers of CR7 and GB11, who both admitted they are considering their Bernabeu futures following last night’s Champions League triumph against Liverpool.
The red tops have been caught cold. There’s not even a token effort about Paris Saint-Germain “plotting a swoop” for Ronaldo or Gareth Bale being lined up for a “sensational switch to moneybags Wolves”.
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The best we get is the Manchester Evening News claiming Manchester United are “on red alert” following Bale’s post-match vow to “sit down with my agent” to discuss his options – a claim the Welshman made in the brief moment where he was not complaining about being “disappointed to start on the bench”.
As for the poor old Sunday Express, they are reduced to trawling through old copies of Don Balon to piece together a story about Ronaldo going back to Old Trafford.
“Ronaldo hints at exit as Manchester United links emerge,” they claim, citing an article on Don Balon from earlier in the week where it was suggested Cristiano’s move to United would be funded by club sponsors Chevrolet.
They also mentions the possibility that United could offer Paul Pogba in exchange for Ronaldo, according to “other reports in Spain”. Then they go and have a look at Betfair and write an article about Chelsea being 7/1 “favourites” to be the Portuguese forward’s next club. Poor show, lads. At least make up your own mindless speculation.
Man Utd target goalkeeper Hart
The Sun on Sunday are doing just that, running an “exclusive” about Joe Hart being targeted by Man Utd. Jose Mourinho apparently wants England’s number four as “back-up to David de Gea” because current understudy Sergio Romero is set to leave. It’s just one indignity after another for Hart isn’t it.
The Sun also says United’s cooling interest in Danny Rose could allow Everton to pounce for the unsettled left-back.
With the Red Devils seemingly focused on signing Alex Sandro from Juventus, the Toffees could “steal a march” on their north-west rivals by launching a £40m bid for the 27-year-old Tottenham man, although a move to Goodison Park was probably not what Rose had in mind when he first began angling for a transfer.
Meanwhile, Manchester City are “closing in” on the £75m signing of Leicester City winger Riyad Mahrez, says the Mail on Sunday. That would made the Algerian the joint-ninth most expensive footballer in the history of the world.
Elsewhere, Arsene Wenger is considering returning to Japan to resume his managerial career (Mail on Sunday), Swansea City forward Jordan Ayew is wanted by Scottish champions Celtic (Record) and Man Utd contract rebel Marouane Fellaini has “priced himself out” of a move to Marseille (Sunday Mirror). The Belgian midfielder allegedly wanted £160,000 a week, plus a statue of him outside the Velodrome and a 20 per cent cut on all Fellaini wigs sold in the club shop.