Your typical shotgun shell is stuffed with lots and lots of little pellets. The theory is that when you fire it at that poor old duck flapping madly away in the sky, the shot will spread out and increase your chances of hitting something.
That’s kind of what it feels like with the rumor-frenzy over Antonio Conte’s job. There are a million stories out there. Eventually, one of them will hit the target. Problem is, right now nobody outside of Marina Granovskaia knows which one is the Pellet of Truth.
Take today, for example. We have two new Max Allegri-to-Chelsea stories to consider (and immediately dismiss?).
First, the better-than-a-red-top Gazzetta dello Sport claims that should Allegri come aboard, he’ll be expensive. They claim he wants €14 million (£12 million) a year. That’s a hefty increase over Antonio Conte’s £9.5 million and would be a club record.
And of course, as is always happens in these rumors, he wants to bring pricey Juventus players with him. They include Federico Bernardeschi, Miralem Pjanic and Rodrigo Bentancur.
Nobody knows what a player will cost until an offer is made and accepted, but if Pjanic alone is worth an estimated €70 million, then we’re swimming in waters that Chelsea have studiously avoided in recent transfer windows. Also, Pjanic is 28 years-old. Other than David Luiz (29), Olivier Giroud (31), Pedro (28) and backup goalkeepers, Chelsea haven’t bought a player that old in more than three years. That doesn’t mean we won’t, but it makes it unlikely.
Meanwhile, other reports from fair Italia are claiming Allegri wants to manage in the Champions League and thus isn’t looking to leave the Old Lady. That’s the beauty of scattershot rumors. One of them may be true.
Here’s another. The-opposite-of-reliable Guillem Balague tells Sky Sports:
“There have been conversations with Luis Enrique, but also with Max Allegri.
“Chelsea will have to take a decision that should include the question of who will be director of football or technical secretary, the person who works with the club to balance the power and authority that a new manager will want, with what the club has always done, which is take a lot of the decisions regarding the playing staff.”
Have there been conversations? Probably, or at least feelers put out. But if reports are true, Chelsea are considering changing the backroom management structure. Which means we may not hire an Emenalo-style director of football.
So yeah, confusing. Overwhelming. Annoying? And it's only April.