Post In Which I Speculate About Calciomercato And Expose My Ignorance About Many Players

Don't ask me why, but for some reason the media have been all over the story of Inter wanting Julio Baptista for the last week, and the unofficial word late last night was that he was de facto sold. It may, or may not, have begun when he was left out of the squad that played Kosice last Thursday, leaving him still available for any and all continental competitions (like, say, the Champions League), an important criteria at this level.

Running parralell with this has been the on-again off-again affair of Wesley Sneijder moving from Madrid to Inter, only slightly better than a random Mexican telenovela (actually worse, statement hereby retracted) that looks like it's finally been concluded, probably puts an end to the Baptista rumours, and all possible work on making that deal happen. Because Baptista is not a midfielder (we romanisti know that, Real Madrid sure as hell knows that, as does Arsenal, but that has seemingly not computed at Inter yet), Sneijder probably fills up their need and want for a 'creative' midfielder, abandoning the Baptista trail. Even though one of Mourinho's favorite moves is throwing every attacker he has onto the pitch in a tactic that is best described as 'fucking retarded', Inter was almost certainly not looking at our guitar playing gym rat to compete with Eto'o and his band of merry men in attack. As for Sneijder, the treatment this transfer story has been given from the Italian media feels like all smoke but no fire. When did he become good enough, or a big enough name, to warrant such attention, and bold headlines, punctuated by exclamation marks no less? He's not off to a brilliant start in the club in any case, as the Inter fans cannot have escaped his many refusals to join their club over the past month. Were I a betting man, I'd wager that he's in England by the end of July 2010.

All of this casts some light upon Spalletti's press conference today, in which he played down the chances of much happening in either incoming or outgoing direction of Trigoria. That speculation makes a lot more sense now that we, too, know Inter are unlikely to pursue Baptista. Where that leaves Roma with the search for the attacker Spalletti wants, nay, craves, I'm not sure. There's speculation of Roman Pavlyuchenko going on (in other news: the sun came up this morning again), and I don't know what to think of that. I don't mean that in the sense that it's too difficult for me to speculate on him joining, and how that could/would fall out, I literally do not know. I've managed to miss each and every single game he's played in. Euro 2008, Tottenham, everything. Someone who did watch him and actually knows a thing or two about him is Chris, at The Offside, who wrote up this nifty profile on him, so if you want someone who actually know's what they're talking about, you know, that's a good place to go.