‘The market never sleeps’ is a saying pushed out by the Italian football media repeatedly.
And it doesn’t, not in Italy.
Whilst the transfer window doesn’t seem so long ago and concentration is on the current international break, the front page of Gazzetta dello Sport’s Thursday edition is looking at attractive free transfers for next summer.
Italian clubs, especially Juventus, have done well out of such plans and it’s obviously a route several Serie A clubs will be looking to go down.
Nice’s Mario Balotelli is the star of the show, with his contract ending in June 2019, but three Tottenham players get a mention.
‘What an auction!’ say Gazzetta as they rub their hands at the free transfers potentially available. Mousa Dembele is pushed forward as one of the main possibilities, as it’s pointed out that Inter Milan have been keen on the player ‘for a long time’.
But Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld also get a mention, and this is where Gazzetta and much of the Italian sport media keep making the same mistake.
Tottenham have options to extend the contracts of both players for a further season, regardless of what Serie A clubs want, and it’s unthinkable those options won’t be used, as Vertonghen himself made clear this week.
Gazzetta and others in Italy are assuming the same with David de Gea and Anthony Martial, and getting carried away with the excitement. Just because their contracts are listed as ending in 2019 there’s no further digging done, but all are subject to club options.