So a BBC commentator mentions in passing just before Norway kick off tonight that a Norwegian newspaper will be printing a story tomorrow that Brede Hangeland could join Arsenal by the weekend – and the Fulham messageboards go into meltdown.
I’m told by a friend in Oslo that the story to which Steve Wilson was referring simply states that Fulham would want £15m for Hangeland and that Arsenal are looking for another central defender – thus rehashing what was splashed across the British back pages a couple of days ago. According to a well-placed source, Fulham have yet to receive a bid from anyone for Hangeland.
That’s not to say that the transfer’s a non-starter but it seems a little bit less cut and dried than many are assuming. I’d certainly be very surprised if a deal goes through this weekend – the opening weekend of the Premier League season. It would leave Hodgson scrambling around for a replacement (Troest is barely halfway through his trial) at the worst possible time, the start of the season, with little time to bed a new man in, and the end of the transfer window, when prices will be sky high.
Losing Hangeland would obviously be a big blow especially as Hodgson’s made a concerted effort to keep him. Let’s hope it doesn’t happen.