Why are journalists making up rubbish about the Christian Benteke transfer?
How do football journalists get away with it? When it comes to reporting on the transfers of players, their standards are even below trashy supermarket celebrity magazines. Indeed, if the standards and ethics used when reporting on football transfers were used in politics, murder cases, war and other more sensitive matters, most publishing houses would have long been burnt down to the ground by their readers and sued into bankruptcy. Lets be frank, when it comes to football transfer stories most journalists pull their stories out of their rear ends, where it seems there’s little room for common sense or logic.
For those of you who aren’t aware, it’s all about making money. With actual revenue in terms of paper sales in free fall since the dawn of the internet, publishers are increasingly reliant on monetising their online content. For them, transfer rumours + social media = £££.
Football now is all about advertising, sponsors and branding, so constant content is needed to feed this commercial beast. Instead of striving to become an authoritative voices on matters, newspapers now have taken to the farming out content true or not, just for hits. As with newsprint, the more salacious the headline the better it sells, or, in this case, goes viral. And yes, ultimately, it’s you, the football supporter, who helps make money by spreading links to their rubbish rumours through your Facebook and Twitter.
“I think there is too much media in football,” said Eric Cantona in an interview with MOMS. “There’s a lot of people who have to speak about football every day in the media, so the sponsors come because they know they will be on the TV twice-a-week, and all the money comes from this kind of organisation. So the media works very hard to help the situation.”
The problem is while supporters look at such nonsense reporting with disdain, they unwittingly keep spreading it, as do football blogs and websites replicating and linking the dross without questioning its validity. More money for the newspaper and publishers, and reporters are then encouraged to keep doing it.
The main problem is there is no accountability for such stories. A new day, brings a new rumour, with the old one long forgotten.
So, lets change this. If you see such a story, point Media Muppet Watch in the direction of it (see below for details). Lets name and shame!
Media Muppets – Since the Benteke Transfer Request
After seeming like Benteke would honour his word to manager and Villa supporters to stay another season, the Villa striker’s mind seemed to completely change after a five-day holiday to Turkey, the home of his agent Eris Kismet. Shortly after, the Villa striker submitted a transfer request and the press pack began frothing at the mouth. There had been an earlier story regarding a potential cash + Emmanuel Adebayor part-exchange deal for Benteke. A ridiculous notion considering Adebayor’s £100,000-a-week wage and the fact his attitude would make Lambert shoot him before he ever signed him. Then came the Defoe + cash part-exchange for Benteke. Villa fans are used to the annual Defoe transfer link by now. It will never happen. Any football journalist worth their salt should know Lambert’s transfer ethos by now. Yet still, these part-exchange deals with players on stupid wages keep coming…
Jack Wilson of The Daily Star – Demba Ba to Villa
‘Chelsea could be poised to offer Aston Villa Demba Ba plus cash to try and lure 22-year-old Benteke to Stamford Bridge. Villa boss Paul Lambert wants the Senegalese international if he does lose Benteke, who is valued at around £25m.’
1) ‘Lambert wants’ a £80,000+-a-week mercenary? Do your homework Mr Wilson on the kind of players Lambert buys.
2) Demba Ba turned down initial wage offer of £50,000-a-week from Chelsea. He’s not going to get more than that at Villa. In his 20’s why would he suddenly drop over £30,000-a-week? He’s a mercenary like Benteke.
3) Villa got burnt on the Stephen Ireland part-exchange , they’ll never do a deal like that for another high wage earner flop, that’ll be stuck on their books for years.
Also, since Jose Mourinho has made a point of announcing Romelu Luakaku will be a Chelsea player this season, surely he’ll be the Drogba-type replacement he wants. He also has Torres. Does he really need Benteke?
As for the rubbish of Benteke’s agent Eris Kismet saying Chelsea haven’t got a chance of buying Benteke, if they actually want him… Since Chelsea paid Demba Ba’s agent £2 million in fees to complete Ba’s transfer from Newcastle, I think Mr Kismet would like a bit of that action, so he’ll soon change his mind.
Media Muppet Score: 9/10
Paul Jiggins of the The Sun – Spurs to use four players as bait
‘Spurs dangle Benteke bait – TOTTENHAM have offered Aston Villa their pick of FOUR players in a desperate bid to land Christian Benteke. Scott Parker, Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Jake Livermore and Tom Huddlestone are all being used as bait for the Villa hotshot.’
Dean Jones and Dave Kidd – The Daily Mirror
Simon Johnson of The Evening Standard – ‘Benteke wants Spurs switch sealed by Thursday’
‘Christian Benteke wants to secure his dream move from Aston Villa to Tottenham by Thursday. Villa are demanding £25million and while Spurs haven’t made a formal offer for the 22-year-old striker, they have made a tentative proposal of £20m.’