Yesterday, it is said an agreement was close between Man City goalkeeper Shay given and Fulham – if this goes through Mark Schwarzer will make the short move across London to join Arsenal. It looks like it will be a loan deal, not a permanent one.
The Daily Mail ran with a somewhat unsubstantiated story about the possible transfer and with people in the football world, journalists and former players alike, saying Mark is on his way to Arsenal it makes you think that the likelihood of it happening is more likely than not. Someone also said to me Sky Sports ran a similar story but I can’t confirm this, I was working all day.
I received a mail early on yesterday claiming that a deal between Man City and Shay Given was very close and in its final stages before completion, Mark Hughes comments after the Fulham draw on Saturday did little to dispel noises that Given was indeed on his way: -
‘Mark Schwarzer has made it clear that he would like to go to Arsenal so we are trying to look at other options. I’m always interested in quality players and Shay Given is a quality player. Make of that what you will. But I have said that if we can’t get anyone else in, Schwarzer will have to stay.’
Speaking yesterday, Arsene Wenger said:
“It is dead at the moment, but maybe not finished”
I would think, and I’m speculating on this bit, that the only issue would be wages – Fulham probably couldn’t afford the wages that Shay is on now at Man City so some sort of compromise; AKA a pay-cut, will have to take place. Alternatively City would have to subsidize the wages so Fulham don’t turn themselves bankrupt by trying to pay wages they can’t afford.
One thing that might hurry this along is that the keeper who looked able to fill Schwarzer’s sizable shoes, the young David Stockdale, has suffered ankle ligament damage and looks like spending up to two months on the sidelines – Fulham have no other goalkeeping option with the quality to play in goal in the Premier League so they have to look elsewhere, if they can’t find a goalkeeper, or the Shay Given deal somehow manages to fall through then as Mark Hughes said; no move will happen.
However like I said, it seems that a deal is very close for Given to move to Fulham on loan – I’m expecting a bit of news tomorrow that hinges on an event in the morning. I’m working so won’t be able to update the site if this event happens (and no, its not a medical), I will probably come back with an update in the late afternoon.
Now choose to believe this or not – this is not being ‘reported’ as fact and this is just me passing you something that has been made available to me. It does fit with what seems to be happening, so I thought it might be of interest.
For a deal to materialise I do think that steps have to be made today so it might get quite interesting, one thing I do not buy is the notion of Manuel Almunia leaving the club now – he was the last to leave the pitch at Blackburn and he did throw his shirt/gloves/armband into the crowd but its most likely he was just thanking them for their support. He had a very good game.
So with less than 48 hours left in the transfer window lets see what happens….