Transfer Balls: Arsenal Get Newcastle’s Sissoko Because His Super-Agent Says So
Transfer Balls: The Sunday Times says Arsenal are ready to invest £15m raid on Newcastle’s Sissoko.
French midfielder’s defensive drive appeals to Wenger as he searches for sturdy cover in Jack Wilshere’s absence
Sturdy cover for “sturdy” Jack Wilshere? When you think of Wilshere, sturdy is not a word that springs to mind. But is Sissoko coming to the Emirates?
[In 2013] The club said Sissoko had signed a six-and-a-half year contract. However, that was contradicted in the summer when his agent Frederic Guerra claimed Sissoko had only 18 months left on his deal at St James’ Park.
Did they sign the same contract? On Jan 25, 2013, the Mail reported:
Having made 218 appearances for Toulouse, his only club, Sissoko has signed a six-and-a-half-year deal with Alan Parde’s side.
In May 2014, the Express said:
MOUSSA SISSOKO is ready to quit Newcastle after just 18 months. The £6million-rated midfielder insists he will listen to offers despite having five-and-a-half years left on his contract.
So how does the agent think Sissoko has much shorter contract? Six months ago, Guerra was quoted:
“The future of Moussa Sissoko? He has another year and a half on his contract at Newcastle and we are open to all proposals,.”
The Journal has more:
But the plot thickens when you scratch the surface, because the man who The Journal understands to have day-to-day responsibilities as Sissoko’s agent is not really Guerra but another agent back home in France of Malian background.
The man in question also has Cheick M’Bengue, a former Tolouse team-mate of Sissoko’s, on his books but Guerra steps up on Sissoko’s behalf because cross-country transfers are never really that simple.
You see, Guerra is one of a small band of agents who qualify as being very, very well-connected.
His client list – which includes Loic Remy, Clement Grenier, Mo Diarra and former Magpies man Olivier Bernard – is impressive, but it is presumably the people he knows at football clubs that sees him engaged time and again by top clubs like Newcastle.
A British-based agent explains the situation to The Journal: “There are lots of agents in football and the impression that people have is that they’re all earning lots of money doing these huge deals, but the reality is quite different. The way it works is that when you operate in France, a player can issue you with a mandate to work on their behalf. That gives you the right to talk to a club and say you’re acting on behalf of so-and-so, but what you often find is that the player has given the same mandate to about 15 other agents. The clubs laugh you out of the building because your mandate is worthless.
“The reason they work with the really big agents – guys like Willie McKay, Guerra or a Kia Joorabchian – is because they know they deliver because they’re so well-connected.”
It is purely speculative, but that industry insider reckons that Guerra mentioned Sissoko because someone will have expressed an interest in him.
And that would be Arsenal…