Steven Gerrard has ‘dismissed’ outright reports linking him with a move for Osijek’s star striker Mirko Maric.
Or has he.
In a curiously worded riposte on the topic, Gerrard failed to actually reject the claims he’d been scouting the Croat international, and instead muddied the water a touch.
“Every time I pick a paper up we’re linked with three or four different people […] Croatian striker I’ve never clapped eyes on and didn’t even know existed.”
The wording of this is interesting – rather than actually deny interest, he specifically said he’s not clapped eyes on him – that could well be the truth, before he actually scouted the striker. How else to find out about someone you don’t know than by ultimately watching them to remedy that?
A major point of the summer window is to scout for unknown talent doing well in weaker leagues to cherry pick them – and the way to do that is the scouting network makes you aware of said player and you then watch them.
Gerrard may have been literal – that he genuinely isn’t interested in Maric – or his language may have been deliberate.
He’s not a stupid man and we know he’s one of the better with the media we’ve had recently. Maybe there’s fire under this smoke after all.