We’ll be honest, when Martin Skrtel to Rangers claims really got going in Turkey, we assumed it was just assumption built on top of assumption.
With Steven Gerrard at the Scottish Premiership club and the pair playing together at Liverpool, the pieces seemed to fit. Then there’s David Bates joining Hamburg, and Bruno Alves almost joining the retirement brigade, and it was all there.
Not to mention Fenerbahce realising they’re probably paying him too much, as they often do, so an exit wouldn’t be the end of the world. Skrtel to Rangers started to pick up steam and has now been covered in the Scottish press too.
We thought it’d be worthwhile having a look over in Slovakia… and it certainly was.
Pravda, who are a big deal in Slovakia (they’ve been speaking to Marek Hamsik today) have a headline saying Skrtel is missing from an upcoming international, and then it’s stated ‘He goes to Glasgow’.
The country’s national manager Jan Kozak is quoted explaining the defender needed a break: “I’d like to see him in the team, I was interested in getting him here. He’s captain, it would be good to be with the team now. But his condition is not good. He first had muscle problems, then he hit his head, played with injections… Finally, we have agreed that as an older player he needs more rest, so he can get things right.”
Pravda then state: ‘The defender also solves his future. Glasgow Rangers’ long-standing interest in his services has become more specific. He was picked by his former Liverpool teammate Steven Gerrard, who became the Rangers coach. After two years, the Slovak hunter should leave the Turkish gran club Fenerbahce and return to the islands for £2.7m, which is slightly more than €3m.’
This is presented as their own information. They’ve covered other parts of the story, but given credit previously to Turkish or Scottish sources. This feels different, like there could actually be some truth in it.
Maybe Steven Gerrard has tempted Skrtel with the prospect of some kind of coaching role.