The Enquiring Fan’s Guide to What Those Transfer Rumo(u)rs Really Mean

By: Laurie | July 25th, 2008

A couple of weeks ago, The Offside got an email request for help in figuring out transfer rumors. Could we please offer up a list of both legitimate and illegitimate sites so readers can figure out for themselves how likely a rumor is to be true?

I’m afraid we can’t do that for a couple of reasons. First, even good sites are sometimes led astray, and as far as bad sites go… Well, even blind squirrels find a nut once in awhile. Plus even the illegitimate sites might link to us someday, and basically? When it comes to links, we’re whores.

(Translation: Whether your site is legitimate or illegitimate, please link to this post.)

So instead, we thought we’d offer up a handy-dandy translation guide so you can figure out for yourselves what’s going on at your favorite team during this unpredictable time of year.

If an agent says “This kid is the next…” It means…

  • “Zidane”… “French with anger management issues.”
  • “Thierry Henry”… “French with an ego.”
  • “Ronaldinho”… “Hello, Jenny Craig?”
  • “Michael Owen”… “Keep the team doctors on speed dial.”
  • “David Beckham”… “No left foot, looks good in his underwear.”
  • “Pato” … “Puberty in two years. Max.”
  • “Peter Crouch”… “Really tall.” (Alternative translation: “If not for football, he’d be a virgin.”)
  • “Wayne Rooney” … “Lock up your daughters and grandmothers”
  • “Cristiano Ronaldo”… “Hair gel, prostitutes and lots of stepovers.”
  • “Maradona”… “We’ll be using a stunt double for the urine test.”

Otherwise, when an agent says… It means…

  • “We’ve had offers from several clubs”… “I need to get my name in the paper so somebody will call.”
  • “Arsene is interested” … “My client is fifteen.”
  • “The number I’m hearing is ten million” … “Please, please please offer a million.”
  • “MLS is interested” … “His legs are going and he’s got two years, tops.”
  • “I just heard from the LA Galaxy” … “My client is thirty-five and European.”

When a manager says… It means…

  • “We have a solid team and are not looking to buy in this transfer window” … “Our owner is a cheap bastard and I have no transfer budget.”
  • “Some feel that the price we have set is too high, but this is what we believe he is worth.” … “Our team would suck without him, and prying him away from us would cost you your favorite body parts.”
  • “We wish the player well with his new club.” … “Rot in hell, you ungrateful wanker.”
  • “We’re waiting a bit longer before we make any moves.” … “We’re a small SPL team and have about 100 pounds to spend on a new midfield.”
  • “He is indispensable to the club” … “Up that offer by 5m.”
  • “The acquisition of this experienced international shows our commitment to building the team.” … “He’s played two games for Faroe Islands. That’s all we can afford. We are so screwed.”

When a player says… It means…

  • “I am so excited that I have prolonged my contract with this club”… “How the hell did nobody else offer me more money?”
  • “I want to end my career here” … “Give me a new contract, ASAP, or I’m calling a midtable Prem club.”
  • “I am thrilled to be playing once again in the land of my birth.” … “I missed the way mummy undercooks my eggs.”
  • “I am very excited about my upcoming move to Outer Mongolia.” … “My agent swore this bluff would get me a big contract in the Premier League. Next time I see him, he’s a dead man.”
  • “I have always wanted to play for Manchester United” … “I have always wanted to play for Manchester United.”
  • “I have always wanted to play for Aston Villa” … “I can’t believe ManU wouldn’t return my calls.”
  • “I have always wanted to play for Wigan” .. “I can’t believe Aston Villa wouldn’t return my calls.”
  • “I have always wanted to play for Derby County” … “I can’t believe Wigan wouldn’t return my calls.”
  • “I have always wanted to play in MLS” … “How did I get so effing old?”

Like this post? Then be sure to check out another translation post, Daryl’s “All the English Fabio Capello Will Ever Need.”

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Category Category: World Football


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  • charlesj27

    Laurie - thanks for giving us the translational legend to what we come across in exploding magnitude on the rumor blogs. Truly, not just a satisfying read - but, useful for what we can expect to come across for next season as well. Where's my M.O.M (Milk of Magnesia)? A traditional supplement of managers and coaches for generations!

  • milanfan_apoorv

    i'm sure infectioner ;)

  • Infectioner

    omg it's so funny my stomach exploded :D

  • Nice article

  • Great article

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