The first of April isn’t really a thing in the world of football transfer gossip; it’s just another day where the papers make up stories. So if there was an April Fools gag somewhere among today’s tittle-tattle, it would be harder to spot than a trace of MDMA spiked into your drink in a nightclub.
For instance, maybe the Telegraph has fabricated – for a laugh – its top story about Chelsea planning to signing Alexis Sanchez and Romelu Lukaku this summer. Both of them! At the very least it sounds a bit greedy.
“Although it would cost them well over £100m, Chelsea are not dismissing the idea,” the paper says. It’s bad news for Alvaro Morata though, with the Blues’ interest in the Spanish striker “cooling” as they focus on Sanchez and Lukaku instead. The most tragic part is that Morata “had even told friends that he expected to move to Stamford Bridge”. That’s going to be awkward now.
Manchester United are the latest club to join the race to sign Burnley defender Michael Keane, with the Mail tipping the Red Devils to offer £25m for the man they sold to the Clarets for £2.5m just two years ago. When you put it like that, it should be an April Fool, but it isn’t.
The Star is essentially one big April Fools’ publication, and today the tabloid reheats the story about Arsene Wenger being offered the chance to move to Paris Saint-Germain if he leaves Arsenal – even though Wenger dismissed similar suggestions as “fake news” last month.
Jermain Defoe may be heading back to the club that launched his career… and it’s not West Ham. (Or Charlton.) It’s Bournemouth. The Express reports that Cherries boss Eddie Howe has expressed an interest in signing Defoe, who had a prolific loan spell on the south coast in the 2000/01 season when they were in the third tier.
Meanwhile, the Mirror says West Ham are lining up a move for “unhappy” Arsenal striker Lucas Perez, although the Gunners will be looking to recoup most of the £17m fee they spent on the 28-year-old last summer.
Elsewhere, Chelsea are in talks with the Hammers over a potential groundshare while Stamford Bridge is redeveloped (Times) England have agreed a £24m sponsorship deal with Pizza Hut to begin after the 2018 World Cup (Sun) and Jurgen Klopp says the Brazilian national team is trying to base its game on Liverpool’s (Mirror). The worrying thing is it’s not 100 per cent clear which of these are April Fools’ jokes and which aren’t…