If there’s one early trend of transfer rumours involving Aston Villa it’s mischievous stories on the future of Aston Villa’s loan signings. Firstly, scaremongering rumours of Josh Onomah being recalled to Spurs seemed to be a weekly occurrence and now the latest topic of choice is Manchester United loanee Sam Johnstone.
According to Teamtalk and the numerous articles that have blindly sprung from it, Sam Johnstone is off to WBA in early January in a done deal. Bristol City will be his last match in a Villa shirt.
Teamtalk (no journalist will put their name to it)
EXCLUSIVE: Man Utd to recall keeper as £4m sale to West Brom looms
Manchester United are poised to recall goalkeeper Sam Johnstone from his loan spell at Aston Villa after West Brom reportedly agreed an undisclosed fee with West Brom.
The 24-year-old stopper joined Villa on loan for a second spell over the summer, but United included a recall clause in January should they receive an offer for the goalkeeper.
And sources have told TEAMtalk that West Brom are on the brink of a deal for the Manchester United custodian having agreed an undisclosed fee of around £4million for the former England U21 international.
Blah, blah, blah
And with his contract due to expire in June, United have decided to cash in now once the window opens.
Our sources say the deal will go through early in January, with the player set to arrive at The Hawthorns and provide Ben Foster with strong cover and competition for the No 1 shirt at the club.
‘Our sources say the deal will go through early in January’
That’s it? No names, quotes or facts?
OK, better call Jed Steer and tell him to get ready to be No.1 in 2018.
2. The Sunday Express and Birmingham Mail (and others) have also published adamant stories that Johnstone is off, so it must be true. Right?
The Express used the headline: ‘Manchester United agree Sam Johnstone deal with West Brom – report’.
But both of these established outlets stories only cite Teamtalk as the origin of the story.
Whatever happened to research? Fact checking? Or their own investigation?
Maybe because it’s a Sunday and News Years Eve, it doesn’t matter?
3. Johnstone’s year extension at United takes him into next season, so there is no desperation to sell this January at £4m
If United hang on to him, and whether Villa are promoted or not, you’d imagine there would be more of a bidding war for his services in the summer and a chance for United to make more than £4m.
4. United, unless I am grossly mistaken, aren’t exactly desperate for the money. Would they be shysters on Villa’s loan deal for the sake of £4m, when they could get that and more in the summer?
I doubt it.
5. Flip the coin, Mr Johnstone. What’s the better bet to be playing the rest of your career in the Premier League?
Bottom of the league West Brom managed by Alan Pardew, or maybe getting promoted with Villa, then either signing for them or another Premier League club in the summer?
6. Sam Johnstone needs regular first team football, but Ben Foster at WBA might have something to say about that, if he signed for the Baggies.
7. Sam Johnstone might have zero common sense and taste, and might want to be targeted as a hate figure for Villa fans to abuse for the rest of his career. You have to factor that in before totally dismissing Teamtalk’s story.
8. You also have to factor in that WBA would be offering Johnstone a substantial pay rise, although they’d be foolish not to factor in a wage reduction clause if they are relegated. So, it might not be a better deal in the long-term for Johnstone.
Media Muppet Rating: 8/10
Johnstone would have to be one dumbass to go through with such a deal and United wouldn’t be too smart either.
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