Money mouth Madrid
Quotes can be taken out of context. Although somewhere in there is an element of truth. In fact, in most cases, the quotes can't be taken out of context.
For example, I'll give Tom Huddlestone the benefit of the doubt. Shots fired, say the press, directed at Andre Villas-Boas. Judging by the length of Tom's hair, I'd say the shots have gone wide. After an interview was published in the Guardian that gave the suggestion he was quite bitter about his departure, he tweeted for clarification, that he hadn't left Spurs under a cloud. Although its safe to say Tom believed he was good enough to remain at Spurs and play more often than he did. Not something the coach (and many of us) would agree on.
Tom had kind words to say about Spurs and the fans, so I wish him well. He needs game time, so he can find out just how good he thinks he is.
With the Bored of Bale saga, you've got Michael Dawson being a model professional, stating that everyone is getting on with the job at hand regardless of the media attention. All wonderfully diplomatic soundbites. Then you've Andre Villas-Boas, that has travelled the spectrum of reaction, up and down and up, in the past month or so stating:
“This is a player of great importance for Spurs and a player we are not willing to negotiate for. We recognise the interest from other clubs but we can’t do anything at this stage"
Someone get me Tom Hanks running around frantically to decipher the above. The first sentence is pretty clear, but that last sentence isn't. Unless it's the ambiguous language of AVBglish. Andre stating, that regardless of any interest, we're not listening.
Not that I'm placing weight on any comment made in public, because clearly, nobody wants to commit by stating 'he's not leaving the club'. Not willing to negotiate can easily change to negotiate if the right bid is made - even if the suggestion is we're not willing to listen. We're hardly going to chase a girl that flutters her eyelids at us. We want to see her flash her panties first.
Then there's these follow up quotes. Which could be out of context, but don't read too well on paper or blog:
"The player is our player – our idea is to count on Gareth. We are aware Real Madrid are interested in the player. It doesn’t mean that we are willing to negotiate. His mental state? Nobody knows because he is refusing to speak. The only thing that we are able to see is the player arriving in and out of the training ground."Those last two sentences, gems for the journos to plaster grim faced photos of Gareth Bale in his Wales suit (no need to publish photos of him smiling) and suggest Gareth is 'blanking' AVB in protest. Bale is probably not saying anything either way, thanks to this financial chess game of sportsmanship between us and Madrid - with player and agent in the middle. AVB probably just clarifying that Bale turns up for training, trains then goes home - like everyone else. There is no dialogue because there is no necessity for dialogue.
I also liked this:
"We can speak to the players regarding their ambitions and we can explain to them that at certain stages players are under contract and have the responsibility towards their clubs and we as club, or the chairman as the person who controls the club, has to defend their own interest"
It's sort of a clue suggesting there probably has been dialogue (contradiction klaxon) in that the club have told the player, we don't have to accept a bid. We don't have to look to sell. Having the media tell us Bale is in turmoil is pretty much a non-event of a statement. Firstly, being at Spurs and having Madrid interested is hardly the definition of turmoil. Its the definition of a bloody wonderful life. It's not something that the player has to publicly share just so the media can stop making assumptions.
Bale's injury is apparently going to keep him out of the first three games. Hopefully not, but we'll have to wait and see if this is a safe guarding exercise. Even if he was fit (which he isn't) it works out best to keep him away from football if there is that potential for him to leave. Or perhaps there's the answer. He is fit, but we'd rather his head be 100% focused on Spurs first. I don't need to run around frantically to tell you that this would suggest the player wants out. I think we're all aware of that minor detail.
Until the window shuts, none of us will know for certain.
Arguably, not a lot has actually happened this summer with this potential move. That still doesn't mean something won't happen. Only takes Madrid to put their money where their mouth is. At the moment, they obviously don't have enough money to stuff their face with. Doesn't mean they wont find some behind the sofa in time to break hearts and make dreams.