Daily Mail, July 26: 'Cesc Fabregas has told friends in English football that he wants to quit Barcelona for Manchester United.'
The Sun, July 30: 'The Spain midfielder has told friends he wants to stay and fight for his place at Barcelona.'
Did he also tell his friends to tell that pretty girl in his Chemistry class that he fancies her?
Think Of A Number
'Are you ready for the £750m Clasico? Bale and Ronaldo v Neymar and Messi - the four best players on the planet set to collide in the biggest club game of all' is the rather eye-catching headline on the Daily Mail website on Tuesday morning. The £750m Clasico, you say? And how did you get to that arbitrary number? Why, by suggesting possible XIs and then guessing at their values, of course. It's dead scientific.
So it's definitely a £750m Clasico if you pretend that the 29-year-old Andres Iniesta is worth £50m, assume that Alexis Sanchez will play in midfield and is still worth £25m, speculate that Gareth Bale will join Real Madrid for £85m and guess that Lionel Messi is worth £150m and Ronaldo just £100m.
Are you ready, people? ARE YOU READY?
Mediawatch suspects that 'MailOnline's hard-hitting football columnist' Adrian Durham is just winding us up now. For every time he suggests that Andre Villas-Boas is being rewarded with plaudits for failure, we point out that Tottenham garnered more points under AVB last season than in any other Premier League campaign. So what does he say this week?
'It is a harsh reality, and a painful irony, that so many praised Andre Villas-Boas for finishing fifth. They might as well have been paying Bale's airfare to Madrid. His ambitions go way beyond a respectable points tally. Dressing up failure as success won't fool true winners.'
Where shall we start? With the fact that 'true winner' Gareth Bale has actually won nothing or that the 'respectable points tally' achieved by AVB was actually higher than anything his friend Harry Redknapp has ever achieved with Tottenham or any other club? And yes, we know we're repeating ourselves; Durham leaves us with no choice.
Hang on. There's more...
Durham continues: 'While we wait the next move in the Bale story this summer, the man who turned him from injury-prone wimp into the Premier League's best player (Bale won the PFA Player of the Year award in 2011) is preparing to start the season this weekend, knowing his reputation as a manager is on the line in many people's eyes.'
And how did the guru that is Redknapp make this transformation happen? What stroke of managerial genius did he pull?
'Redknapp spoke to Bale about mental toughness and not being a baby when things got physical. He told him to stop messing around with his hair all the time.'
Now that's the kind of brilliance that turns an 'injury-prone wimp' into the best player in the Premier League in 2011. You may note that Bale also won the PFA award in 2013 but not in 2012. We assume that in 2012, under Harry, he started 'messing around with his hair' again.
Headline in The Sun, June 22: 'Wayne Rooney set for crunch Manchester United talks.'
Headline in The Sun, July 30: 'Rooney crunch talks.'
That's an awful long time to be 'set for' anything, never mind the rather terrifying prospect of 'crunch talks'.
The Daily Mail on Moyes/Rooney: 'The two men have not spoken since Moyes infuriated Rooney by suggesting that he wanted to keep the unsettled England striker at Old Trafford as back-up for Robin Van Persie.'
The Sun on Moyes/Rooney: 'The pair have talked in the last fortnight after what Moyes believes was a breakdown in communication over the player's future.'
The Daily Mirror on Moyes/Rooney: 'Moyes is due at Carrington training ground today, where he will meet him for the first time since it emerged the striker was "angry and confused"'.
Sur La Même Page
Apparently Nani wants a 'final heart-to-heart with Manchester United boss David Moyes'. Presumably that's different to 'crunch talks'. It certainly sounds more pleasant.
Both Monaco and PSG have shown an interest and The Sun quote a 'PSG source' as saying: "Nani has been offered to us. He is a very good player but there have been no talks yet."
Which to Mediawatch sounds remarkably similar to these quotes from Monaco chief Vadim Vasilyev: "He has been proposed to us. He is a very good player, but there have been no talks so far."
Sweet And Sour
Less than two years ago, the Daily Mirror told us that 'Chelsea are weighing up a £20million January bid for Real Madrid's Sami Khedira after his relationship with Jose Mourinho turned sour'. Now they tell us that Mourinho 'has lined up a raid on his old club Real Madrid for Germany star Sami Khedira'. Presumably they made up.
Mediawatch is not sure that Sun readers should hotfoot it to their website to watch scribe Neil Custis giving his 'video verdict on Man Utd's win over Kitchee'.
According to his report in said newspaper, United won 5-1.
Fanboy Quote Of The Day
"I have really enjoyed working with them. They have been incredibly professional. I can see why they are champions because of the way they conduct themselves and go about their business. I have been very impressed" - David Moyes continues to be in awe of footballers doing their jobs. Presumably the Everton players turned up late and played Kerplunk all day.
Accusation Of The Day
'A photographer has filed a police complaint accusing Argentina legend Diego Maradona of kicking him in the groin. Enrique Medina, a paparazzo for celebrity magazine Gente, claims the attack happened outside Maradona's father's home as he waited to take a picture of the former midfielder on Sunday night. Medina clams the 52-year-old came out of the house, charged towards him "like he was taking a free-kick" and kicked him so hard that he "doubled over in pain". "This wasn't the kick of an ordinary person," Medina told the Associated Press. "This is from someone used to kicking...He seemed very angry, out of his mind. Like something had happened in his father's house." - ESPN. We're very much enjoying the phrase 'this was from someone used to kicking'.
Headline Of The Day
'LOAN RAGER' - The Daily Mirror on Pepe Reina.
Worst Headline Of The Day
'Moyes home to rule Roo-st' - The Daily Star.
Non-Football Story Of The Day
'The Tien Giang Province People's Court in southern Vietnam has turned down the demand of a local woman who wanted $8,500 in compensation for her loss of honor after she bit the penis of an elderly man at a public party. The court on July 23 opened a trial to settle a very weird lawsuit in which the 38-year-old woman, N.T.L, bit the penis of an old man, T.T.H, 64 years old, and then demanded the man pay her a total of VND180 million (US$8,500) "as compensation". She claimed that the sum included VND100 million that the man - her former lover - had promised to pay her when he challenged her to bite his penis. The bitten man did not make payment after she did the biting part. The remaining amount of VND80 million was claimed by L as compensation for 'her loss of honor and dignity due to the scandal'. However, the court turned down the plaintiff's claim, saying that L failed to prove how she had suffered damage from the incident' - tuoitrenews.vn. THE PENIS STAYED IN ONE PIECE! HUZZAH!
Thanks to today's Mediawatch spotter Bibhash Dash. If you see anything that belongs on this page, mail us at email@example.com, putting 'Mediawatch' in the subject field.