It’s transfer season in Europe, and we all know what that means. No, not helicopters flying to remote training grounds or Sky Sports reporters getting knocked upside the head with sex toys.
It means all of social media is awash with righteous indignation. How dare players move away from a club that has fed and nurtured and burped and birthed them, just to get a little extra cash?
So on Friday, when Aston Villa captain Fabian Delph looked certain to go to Manchester City, fans were a teensy bit annoyed. This was one of the more polite, family-friendly tweets:
I spent much of my day watching twitter dot com, and have little desire to go through and find more tweets of Villa fans speaking their minds. Suffice it to say, these people did not appreciate that Delph had signed a new contract in January, and was now apparently accepting bundles of money to move to City and sit on the bench.
Delph’s words from when he extended his contract didn’t help.
Then, on Saturday, the club announced that Delph was staying. Yes, despite the lure of flashy City money, despite the fact that he’d agreed personal terms and was due for a medical, the 25-year-old chose to stay with Aston Villa.
Talk about loyalty. Talk about commitment. Talk about integrity. Delph heard the clamor of the fans, he reconsidered his stance, and he decided that he’d rather go back on going back on his word.
A cynic would say Delph realized he’d rather be captain of a middling squad than shipped out on loan and still watching Champions League on TV. That cynic is wrong. Fabian Delph is the hero all soccer fans have been looking for. The hero modern football not just wants, but needs.
Plus, he’s voluntarily going to remain at a club that’s struggled against relegation for the past five years. A club that thinks #SayItLikeSherwood is an acceptable hashtag.
Get this man a cape.