Now I know that the tabloids are more often than not very, very wide of the mark with their stories. They are especially unreliable when it comes to transfer rumours. However, this latest one refuses to disappear and makes me feel I have to write about it.
The gist of the story is that Hertha BSC 'star' Gilberto is on his way to Old Trafford, signing a two-year-deal, to act as cover for Patrice Evra. I am one of those who believe we need a left-back with Silvestre still out and O'Shea being essentially right-footed. But who is this Gilberto chap?
Well, he's 31 and the type of guy who can be called a journeyman. Bundesliga side Hertha BSC is his seventh club (I know, it does not beat Nicolas Anelka), five of these clubs were Brazilian and the other one was Inter Milan, possibly the peak of his career. He was playing there for six months...
So, we'd sign a 31-year-old player with almost no Champions League experience and one who has never played in the Premiership. Can hardly be considered an up-and-coming talent and, well, let's face it, he's a mediocre player.
Now this is interesting in two aspects. First, if the tabloids are wrong (which seem the obvious) then one must ask how in the hell they figured out this story at all? Put letters into a hat, got out eight and these happened to be G, i, l, b, e, r, t, o. They thought that we possibly won't sign Gilberto Silva from the dear Gooners therefore they ended up finding this Hertha lad.
The second aspect is that the story is indeed true. In that case we must question the mental integrity of those responsible for transfers at Manchester United. Quite simply I refuse to believe that Sir Alex Ferguson wants a 31-year-old Brazilian - I mean, Kleberson was at least a World Cup winner who put on a good show in the World Cup final.
I'll eat humble pie if we indeed sign the guy and he turns out to be dead useful but I very seriously doubt it. Especially as Fergie stressed time and time again that he won't make more additions to the squad in January.