Yesterday a site featured on the reputable News Now aggregator suggested that a host of Championship clubs were looking at Harry Anderson. News Now has a strict policy of backing up claims and sites on their tend to reputable.
I work for a site that uses News Now, both as a vehicle for articles and as a source of the latest news. The policy is very strict in terms of validating claims, with only a few sources able to report claims and be the original source.
For the Harry rumours, a site called Team Talk claimed to be the original source and in order to see whether or not there was any validity to their claim, I decided to look back through their archives and find out if they’d been correct in the past. If they had been, maybe there was some value to the rumours. If not, well you decide for yourself.
Firstly, I started by doing a search on Lincoln City, to see if our players had been linked with a move away before, or indeed if we’d been allegedly interested in anyone. The first article that caught my eye also jogged my memory as it linked us with Fylde striker James Hardy. As you’ll know, we don’t have James Hardy on our books.
We were apparently also in competition with a host of League One and Championship clubs which could have explained why we don’t have Hardy now, only he’s still at Fylde, so that rumour didn’t come to fruition.
In October 2017 the site reported that Jack Barham was being chased by a number of EFL clubs. Once again, they reported that it was four teams in the main after the striker, Shrewsbury, Coventry, Colchester and Exeter amongst ‘a host’ of other clubs. In fairness, Barham did move but not until the end of the season and not to a league club, so again this could hardly be construed as a hit.
In fact when you dig deep enough, the site seems to like linking lower league players to big moves they don’t end up making. They put Gold Omotayo in the Premier League just weeks after he signed for Whitehawk, but he’s now with Bury.
They did correctly get Kai Brown’s move to Ipswich but their reporting of Vinnie Steels Burnley move seems to be gleaned from other, more responsible reports. They threw a further eight names into the hat, despite reports having already surfaced that Burnley were in talks with the player.
They don’t do a lot of exclusives either, I’ve had to go back fifty or sixty pages, but it is perhaps a good job. Marcus Tavernier, hunted by Portsmouth according to them, stayed put. Blackburn weren’t forced into selling Charlie Mulgrew to Turkey, Nick Powell certainly didn’t move to Leeds, Villa or Stoke and Jason Puncheon didn’t move to Boro.
When it comes to Harry Anderson, I wouldn’t be panicking just yet and in future, I’ll not be reporting Team Talk ‘exclusives’ as a valid source.