This morning’s Mirror Exclusive: Torres and Reina ready to use secret escape clauses to quit Liverpool in January. That’s pretty eye-catching stuff. Two of Liverpool’s most important players ready to jump the ship? Yet, as you scroll down the page, your eyes searching desperately for a source, you realise you’ve been duped. It’s a disappointing case of the Mirror creating a story out of thin air in a scandalous and manipulative attempt to sell copy. I just hope that there weren’t too many who saw this story on the back of the Mirror today and decided to pick up a copy.
The Mirror reports that the two players in question are unhappy as a result of a number of promises that were made to them over the summer remaining unfulfilled. Upset at the absence of Champion’s League status at Liverpool and the grim reality that Liverpool aren’t ready to challenge for the League this season, it seems as though Reina and Torres are ready to jump ship and find football elsewhere.
A lot of effort was put into keeping Torres at the club over the summer. It’s suggested that promises were made and that an escape clause was written into his contract in case Liverpool didn’t come through. What were these promises? That Roy Hodgson was just a ‘temporary measure’. That a new big name manager was lined up and that he would have a £100 million transfer kitty ready to go and that this would be enough to see Liverpool competing with Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea once more. These do not sound like the kind of promises a club like Liverpool would make to a player, especially when there was still such uncertainty regarding its future.
Not satisfied with sowing the seeds of discontent amongst Liverpool and its fans, the Mirror even suggests what the value of these secret escape clauses might be. Given that Torres was constantly hawked to Chelsea (another story that turned out to be nonsense) over the summer for an estimated £50 million and that Arsenal were reportedly willing to shell out £20 million for Reina over the summer (more nonsense) The Mirror suggests that these are the amounts that would take these players away from Liverpool.
Let’s not mince our words here: this is utter trite. It’s more unsubstantiated, fabricated nonsense from the papers who do it with the intention of selling copy, without caring that they are damaging the relationship between players and fans. The notion of good, reliable journalism is long gone and with stories like this in the news every other day you can’t help but feel that things aren’t going to change soon. If there’s no source, there’s no validity and it should be treated as baloney. Although players like Torres and Reina may be unhappy with the club’s current position, they have never expressed any unhappiness with the club itself. To suggest that two players of this quality are ready to abandon ship is pretty disrespectful to both the players and the club. I just hope this story is laughed off and given the credence it deserves.
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