As the nights draw darker and the days colder, it can only signal an imminent change on the horizon for football – the opening of the January transfer window. There have been some pretty substantial dealings going down in the New Year in the past, most notably involving Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur.
Sky Sports have already brought in the ‘Transfer Latest’ segment on their homepage and it’s only mid-November. However, with the transfer window comes the inevitable re-emergence of Twitter’s biggest pain in the a**e – that of the ITK.
The so-called ‘In The Know’ trolls rear their ugly head once again, proclaiming club X will sign player Y after hearing from the club shop’s tea lady that a high profile striker was spotted exiting a neon hummer limo at the training ground.
You see, ITK’s are nothing but s**t stirring thunderc**ts, hopeful of attracting a substantial following and RT list in order to continue spouting their nonsensical transfer garbage. As mentioned, it’s only mid-November and while Sky Sports have their Transfer Latest, the faceless keyboard warriors have already begun to weave their absurd claims.
It started as any innocuous Monday night should. West Ham United and Stoke City were playing out a dull 1-1 draw at Upton Park and Sean Morrison had started up the most trended topic of the evening with his hashtag #Cerealquest.
Yet, a web of lies was being spun by one account, who shall remain unnamed, tweeted to their 4,500+ followers that, having lost 5-2 to Arsenal, Spurs head coach Andre Villas-Boas had just three games to save his job.
Unsurprisingly, Spurs fans were up in arms and a torrent of abuse was launched towards said Twitter account. The last time a similar piece of info was reported, the North London side went on to defeat Manchester United at Old Trafford for the first time in 23 years.
Nevertheless, the amount of followers attributed to the account meant the claims spread like wildfire, so much so that talkSPORT even reported something similar. It’s the social networking equivalent of Chinese whispers, and unfortunately some are actually dumb enough to believe what they’re being told.
I mean, this account was one that proclaimed that Andy Carroll, Jack Butland, Joao Moutinho and Daniel Sturridge were all ‘dead certs’ to sign for Spurs, while Hugo Lloris was ‘100% not signing’ for the North London side. Lilywhites’ fans know how that turned out.
It didn’t stop there either, with other accounts proclaiming that January is ‘going to be a busy one for the club’. Sorry, but with six weeks until the transfer window reopens, it’s unlikely that potential targets have been discussed, let alone approached.
While Willian, Miralem Pjanic and Klaas Jan Huntelaar, of respective Shakhtar Donetsk, AS Roma and FC Schalke 04 fame, have all been linked with White Hart Lane switches, talks of a winter switch to North London are premature, to say the least.
Every transfer window these accounts creep out of the woodwork claiming to have contacts in high places, insisting that any deal they discuss is “done”. There were a number of these Twitter avi’s emerge over the summer, before actually coming clean and admitting they did it as a joke.
If that wasn’t an indicator as to the reliability of these ITK’s on the social networking site, then I doubt half of the people on the internet will ever learn to not believe these trolls. But they’ll never stop – the transfer folk crave the attention that is sent their way, despite on numerous occasions being found out by those clever enough to see through their barefaced lies.
I mean, it can’t be that hard to realise they’re bovine excrement. Over the summer, for example, one well followed Twitter account claimed Liverpool were in talks to sign Patrice Evra. Whether they were trolling or had been living under a rock the best part of nine months, it remains to be seen, but then some were so bloody brainless that they actually took the tweet as bible.
Nevertheless, these faceless f**ktards will regularly appear every transfer window, or in this case; weeks beforehand. What is important is to never believe what they say. Most are school children bored on half-term and looking for a quick fix to fill the boredom that they’re evidently suffering from. And if you are foolish enough to believe, then you don’t deserve to be allowed access to the internet.