Gossip: Manchester United to break world transfer record

Date published: Sunday 13th May 2018 8:50

Now you can’t say that the Sunday Mirror’s John Richardson is afraid of making some bold transfer claims. The first report from yer man made us spit out our Coco Pops.

Richardson writes that Manchester United are lining up a £200m-plus move for Neymar this summer. That’s despite PSG saying that the Brazilian is going nowhere, and just about everyone thinking that if he does move it will be to Real Madrid.

We’re also told that Manchester United would be happy to pay Neymar the £30m a year that he currently gets in Paris. Well, they’d have to.

The evidence for the move is that United have a good relationship with Neymar’s father, who supports Manchester United.

Wonderfully, Richardson ends his piece with the following line:

‘Any deal to take Neymar to the Bernabeu would cost in excess of the near £200million fee paid by PSG to lure him to the French capital last summer.’

But you just said…?


Part two of John Richardson’s Sunday gossip drive concerns the future of Wilfried Zaha. He believes that Zaha is set to be announced by Manchester City as a £50m signing.

It will certainly be no surprise if Pep Guardiola adds another wide forward to his squad this summer in a bid to keep competition for places high and complacency low, but there are a couple of issues with Richardson’s article.

Firstly, the story originally said:

‘Zaha never made the grade at Old Trafford and was involved in a few rows with Ferguson and the United staff.’

It’s an odd thing to say, given that Ferguson had retired as manager and become a club ambassador by the time Zaha actually joined United.

By Sunday morning, that now reads:

‘But Zaha never made the grade at Old Trafford and was involved in a few rows with Ferguson’s successor David Moyes and the United staff.’

Easy mistake to make – they both have Scottish accents.

And then comes:

‘And Hodgson is resigned to losing Zaha admitting: “It’s inevitable we are going to lose a few good players in the summer.”’

Hodgson did say that, but not about Zaha. Here are his quotes in full:

“It depends how well we replace the numerous players we’re likely to lose. If we’re going to have a good season next season where we have stability and not being frightened to death every time a match comes that we’re going to lose it and be back in the relegation zone, I’ll need a good squad of players.

“There is a lot of work to do from Dougie Freedman in particular and our chairman and owners. They’ve got an awful lot to do to ensure that when I come back to pre-season training, there’s a group of players in front of me that I feel confident will be able to do what these have done, because we’re going to lose a few good ones.”

So no mention of Zaha, then.


At least John Richardson has some semblance of evidence. The same cannot be said of Express Sport and their claim that ‘Unai Emery favourite to replace Arsene Wenger as Arsenal manager – EXCLUSIVE’.

Now Emery might well take over from Wenger this summer, but the ‘clear favourite’ claim is miles off. Emery is 16/1 with plenty of bookmakers, with Max Allegri, Mikel Arteta, Carlo Ancelotti, Luis Enrique and even Brendan Rodgers widely available at lower odds.

Wonderfully, as an inset to their story Express Sport include a gallery of ‘Next Arsenal manager odds: Who could replace Arsene Wenger?’. One name is conspicuous by its absence. You’ll never guess who.


West Ham are interested in Unai Emery as an option to replace David Moyes… Manchester City are looking at signing Jorginho and Riyad Mahrez… Sam Allardyce is expected to leave Everton and be paid up on the remaining year of his contract… Everton interested in Wigan Athletic forward Callum Lang.

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