Hey, Peach State soccer fans! Welcome to your rumor mill debut! Your future’s talented, temperamental, injured and potentially overweight.
“ADEL TAARABT is poised to sign for new Major League Soccer side Atlanta”, reports The Sun.
The story breaks new ground for use of the word “poised,” given that Atlanta won’t actually start play in MLS until 2017. Two entire years! That’s a long time for anyone to remain “poised”. The team doesn’t yet have a head coach. Or a finished stadium. Or a name. But yeah. Their marquee signing’s going to be Adel Taarabt. Any day now. He’s going to train on his own by dribbling up and down the aisles of a Home Depot near the World of Coca-Cola.
Seeing the wayward Moroccan genius in MLS would be genuinely exciting, up to the point where he gets injured/dropped/falls out with his coach. Around May, probably. That is, assuming Atlanta get Taarabt as we know him today. Given his maverick tendencies, who knows what he’ll be like in 2017? The guy makes Joey Barton look predictable. He could be FIFA World Player of the Year… or in QPR’s reserves.
As a responsible journalistic outlet, Soccer Gods must add a note of caution: This move may not happen, and not only for the minor logistical challenges detailed above.
Is it possible that The Sun may have fallen victim to an unfortunate vowel-loss incident, and that a more likely destination for the playmaker is in fact Serie A – specifically, Atalanta, the club based in Bergamo?
After all, the QPR man had a successful loan spell in Italy with AC Milan last season, and the idea of Taarabt joining Atalanta had been floated a couple of days before The Sun’s story.
Or… did the fledgling MLS franchise see these rumors and spot an opportunity for a transfer coup? Could this be a winning player acquisition strategy? Let the target think he’s heading for Serie A. Bundle him on a private plane, mumbling something about joining “At, uh, lanta.” Slip a tranquilizer into his Gatorade. Ten hours later, he’s on the tarmac at Hartsfield-Jackson airport, then sipping sweet tea and having lunch at Chick-fil-A. He’ll have forgotten all about going to Lombardy.