Transfer views: Peep Show, stalkers and unexpected arrivals
It's mission accomplished for Arsenal as they stick to their word - but nobody's particularly happy about it.
Arsenal keep Sanchez
In series three of Peep Show, Mark is so transfixed by the idea of proposing to long-time crush Sophie that he fails to realise he no longer actually wants to marry her.
By the time this dawns on him, there’s no going back: she discovers the ring and he is forced to proceed with a sham engagement.
It's a scenario Arsenal can probably relate to.
The Gunners must now proceed with star stropper Alexis Sanchez, having only realised that their summer-long ambition of keeping hold wasn't what they wanted when it was too late.
A last-ditch approach for potential-replacement Thomas Lemar was made, but Monaco were no longer prepared to come to the table.
The result is that the Gunners are now stuck in a loveless marriage with a player reportedly reluctant to ever play for the club again.
Having actually achieved what they set out to achieve, Arsenal – who have separated with a few prized assets down the years – were still left with that familiar sinking feeling.
Liverpool fans make it weird
What we learned from deadline day: some Liverpool supporters think Virgil van Dijk lives at Southampton’s training ground.
That is the only possible interpretation of the frenzy caused by the Dutchman’s departure from the Saints’ Staplewood Campus at around midday on Thursday - on the face of it, a perfectly acceptable hour to be, you know, going home.
It’s been an eventful week for Reds fans, who had already crashed a flight-map website and overloaded Google with searches for familiar features of a Mercedes people-carrier in their efforts to literally track everything Van Dijk does.
All this despite Southampton's unwavering insistence from the start that the player was not for sale.
At least Liverpool fans can occupy themselves with the endless opportunities presented by another four months’ worth of stalking until the window re-opens in January.
World-class midfielders join mid-table teams
We’re not saying Renato Sanches doesn’t know much about Swansea, bu – well, yes, we are saying that.
And Grzegorz Krychowiak has probably been too busy swanning around in Seville and Paris to know West Bromwich from your West Bromptons and West Bridgfords.
Thankfully, though, brilliant footballers don’t need to be too familiar with their surroundings to play brilliant football.
And we couldn’t irritate West Brom or Swansea fans even if we wanted to.
Their teams have probably just pulled off the coups of the summer.
We’re speculating here, but we doubt that, after being informed by technical director Michael Emenalo that Ross Barkley had slipped through Chelsea’s fingers, Antonio Conte left the room whistling a merry tune.
Nor will he have been all smiles when Romelu Lukaku, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Fernando Llorente also gave the Blues the cold shoulder.
In fact, we don’t think the Italian is particularly happy at all.
Still, at least he doesn’t hold a grudge.
Watch out, Michael.