Thursday morning, the longest transfer saga of the summer took another murky turn as Radja Nainggolan sent a few more mixed messages designed to either facilitate his transfer to Chelsea or facilitate his new and improved contract at Roma.
Just a few hours after those positive hints, further reports made it seem like the latter was more the case than the former, as the 28-year-old midfielder rehashed a few more of his previous statements.
"I said to [AS Roma president James Pallotta] I love where I am playing so why not stay?"
"Chelsea were talking but at the moment there is nothing. The Premier League is a big competition, it's lovely, but I think sometimes in life you need to make choices, and all I can say is that I am happy where I am."
-Radja Nainggolan; source: ESPN
From "are talking" to "were talking", do not pass Go, do not collect midfielder.
But that wasn't enough Nainggolan for one day as Gianluca Di Marzio chimed in later on what he's calling an "evolving situation" with another supposed bid from Chelsea.
...today Chelsea offered Roma €35 million on a set fee with no bonuses payable in one installment to bring him to the Premier League.
-source: Gianluca Di Marzio
Without bothering to count, I think this is our third bid. At least second. The language is important as our previous bid was €32m plus €3m in bonuses, now it's €35m all up front. So much better! They'll never refuse this one!
Chelsea is going to insist for Nainggolan: Antonio Conte strongly wants him. But Roma will not sell him for less than €40/45M #CFC— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) June 23, 2016
Talk about useless churn. We might as well just go by €1 increments. Death by a thousand tiny bids.
In this scene, Roma are played by the late, great Bernie Mac (NSFW language).
It's a seller's market. This is prix fixe.
What's another €10m? Pay the man.