It goes without saying that Crystal Palace fans everywhere love Jose Fonte. The 32-year-old Southampton man was something of a cult hero during his time with us and now, with the transfer rumour mill churning out new stories every few hours, he is being linked with a return to Selhurst Park.
With Alan Pardew having been quite open in expressing his desire to bring in a central defensive partner for Scott Dann ahead of the new league season, Fonte would certainly fit the bill, having proven to be a perfectly adaptable centre-half at St Mary’s, but on the face of it, this story looks to have little to no substance behind it.
No doubt dreamt up on the flimsy premise that the pair’s previous association with one another could be enough to sway Jose into retuning to the club where he first made his name, it smacks of a journalist being pressured to fabricate a potential transfer rumour for the sake of clicks, rather than the result of any genuine inside information.
Of course, I could be badly wrong, with Fonte himself returning to SE25 within a matter of days, thus leaving me looking like an utter fool, but you have to ask yourself why a footballer who is already well on the wrong side of 30 would even begin to entertain a move away from a club who will be competing in European competition next season under the guidance of a truly innovative coach.
I have no doubt that Jose has a special place in his heart for us, but in truth, any hopes of sentiment creeping into his decision making process are likely to a fair way wide of the mark, given what he has on offer to him with Southampton next term.
Let’s hope I’m wrong, but if ESPN’s initial story had got your hopes up, I wouldn’t get too carried away just yet.