We don't doubt for a moment that the wise and learned readers of The18 have long known not to trust 98% of what politicians say during a presidential campaign. And it seems that premise can be applied to La Liga, too.
You might recall that Barcelona are currently serving a transfer ban that sees them unable to sign any player until January 2016. And yet, rumor has it, this summer the Catalans will sign Paul Pogba from Juventus. Let that sink in: Paul Pogba, this summer.
How? According to Spanish newspaper Marca, Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu has come up with a plan so cunning it makes a Bond villain look like a toothless simpleton: Armed with little more than his charm and a cheeky smile, Bartomeu will this summer convince Pogba’s agent Mino Raiola to commit his player to joining Barca next summer. He’ll then use that commitment to win his pending presidential election by luring voters into thinking they'll see this at Camp Nou in 12 months' time:
So, in summary, Bartomeu will promise voters this summer that he has a gentlemen’s agreement with Raiola – one of the slipperiest men in the least trustworthy industry on the planet – to sign Paul Pogba in 2016. Assuming he wins the election. And Juventus agree to sell. And Raiola keeps his word.
As you may have gathered, we’re not convinced. In fact, so certain are we that Barca won’t sign, agree to sign or indeed announce any sort of Pogba deal this summer that, if they do, we’ll happily skip down the Pearl St Mall in downtown Boulder singing “I Feel Pretty, Oh So Pretty” wearing nothing more than a look of deep-seated regret.
And that’s a promise.