Why Henry’s move might not kickstart transfer window
Barcelona’s Thierry Henry is heading to New York Red Bulls in a widely expected move but don’t think the first big post-World Cup transfer means the window will suddenly be awash with deals.
An event before the World Cup is a major reason why Henry has decided to follow David Beckham’s lead and try out MLS. David Villa’s early move to Barca from Valencia meant there was no room for Henry at the Nou Camp and after France’s flop in South Africa there were few other interested parties.
Barcelona were seen as the major drivers for this transfer window given they are also keen on Arsenal’s Cesc Fabregas. However, noises coming out of North London suggest the midfielder is set to stay in the Premier League for now.
The fact Fabregas could not get a start in Spain’s victorious World Cup team might make him realise that he would not be an automatic first choice at boyhood club Barca either given international team mates Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Sergio Busquets all play there.
Coach Pep Guardiola is staying at least another season but Barca’s money problems mean any really big buys might be out of the question and Arsenal clearly want a lot for Fabregas.
Another bit of transfer gossip affecting Barca is constant rumours linking Zlatan Ibrahimovic with a move back to Milan after one season. The only difference is that AC Milan want him rather than former club Inter.
Milan have said they cannot afford the whole package for Ibra but if Ronaldinho was to head off to Flamengo, as reports say in Brazil, then maybe a space could be freed up.
Quite how Milan fans would feel about another ex-Inter hero playing for them (following on from the likes of Ronaldo) is unclear but Inter supporters probably would not care given they already had the last laugh on Ibra, who left to go win the Champions League only for the Nerazzurri to then triumph.
Inter, with former Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez now in charge, are interested in the Premier League club’s midfielder Javier Mascherano but otherwise the new European champions have barely been linked with anyone.
Inter’s right back Maicon was due to be joining old coach Jose Mourinho at Real Madrid but some reports now say that deal is off for the timebeing. Real did their big spending in the last close season and Mourinho has surprisingly not been linked with that many players, although Chelsea’s Ashley Cole is now the centre of speculation.
Transfers always take time to pick up after a World Cup but the state of global and soccer finances mean this window may be a quiet one. But surely England’s big spenders can spice things up?
Maybe not. Liverpool have limited funds but Fernando Torres’ injury may mean new boss Roy Hodgson has to sign somebody while Chelsea could now be put off bidding for the striker.
Very few transfer rumours are eminating out of Manchester United, who already bought Mexico’s Javier Hernandez.
Inter striker Mario Balotelli has caught Alex Ferguson’s eye according to reports but given the teenage rebel’s often bizarre antics last season, it’s odd to think that he is Ferguson’s kind of player.
Nouveau riche Manchester City, who have already brought in Yaya Toure, David Silva and Jerome Boateng while tracking a host of others, may thus be the only major European club to really spend big in this window.