Now that the season is over is it is with depressing predictability that the transfer rumour mill has cranked into life and already started turning out fantasy gems.
Along with stories dreamed up by those with too much time on their hands there is the usual summer feature that most people fear - the protracted transfer saga.
Even though the season finished little more that a week ago there has already been more than enough column inches filled with sheer gossip and speculation - and GMF is here to bring you those players at the centre of the stories that will run and run and run…..
Robin van Persie
As soon as the Dutchman said he would only discuss a new deal with Arsenal at the end of the season most scribed knew they had a story that would fill newspaper throughout the long hot summer months.
After playing in Arsenal’s last game of the season his every move was analysed; was the fact he applauded the crowd three times before he left to return to the dressing room was seen in equal measures a sign he was off and that he was staying, while for weeks to come you can expect to read about his contract negotiations, true or otherwise.
Manchester City and Juventus are reportedly in the running for his services should he not agree to extend his contract with Arsenal, which runs out next year.
Hazard certainly scoops the award for the most protracted transfer saga already and the summer transfer window isn’t even open yet.
Since about March Hazard has been extolling the virtues of every single member of the top six in the Premier League, with the Lille winger speaking to the press on an almost daily basis and drip-feeding information each time.
The 21-year-old was meant to announce his future on Sunday but only clouded the issue by revealing he had added Chelsea to his list of possible destinations to go along with Manchester United and Manchester City, while Lille’s managing director said earlier this week that four clubs were in the running. Confused?
So are we, and its bound to get even more baffling before any answers become clear.
Chelsea are closest to signing Lucas Moura, according to Sao Paulo’s president. Chelsea are nowehere near landing Lucas Moura, says Chelsea’s president. Moura himself wants to go to Inter Milan. Sao Paulo’s president says Inter Milan have only offered around £22 million for the Brazilian, nowhere near enough to land him.
You get the idea of how tedious this is going to be. Moura is undoubtedly one of the hottest prospects on the planet but looks likely to be at the centre of a damp squib of a transfer saga with Chelsea unlikely to better their current offer. Still the stories about his future will run and run.
Chelsea’s reported interest in Hulk stretches back to the dark days of Andre Villas-Boas, where, during the transfer window, a ridiculous £85 million release clause in his contract was revealed.
Now though the Brazilian forward looks to be trying to twist Porto’s arm into letting him go by going public with his desire to leave the club, with no less than four Premier League clubs interested apparently - Chelsea, Tottenham, Manchester United and Liverpool.
Porto are willing to be reasonable and lower the price tag placed on the 25-year-old to £35 million, and the player’s agent has said he wants to move to a bigger league – this one looks set to rumble on for some time.
Another of the Belgian brigade to hawk himself around to a host of Premier League clubs in the hope that one will bite, Jan Vertonghen is quoted in the press almost hourly about how negotiations are going with Tottenham, and how Arsenal are still in the hunt, and how he couldn’t turn down AC Milan if they came calling, nudge, nudge, wink, wink.
As it stands Tottenham are his preferred choice but don’t want to pay the £12 million Ajax are demanding for a player in the last year of his contract, Arsenal are lurking and interest in the whole sorry spectacle is dwindling.