Signing players from a foreign league can always be a rather risky piece of business; just ask Newcastle United.
The Magpies have not always had the rub of the green when it comes to some of the transfer deals they have conducted from some of Europe’s top leagues in the past.
Jean Alain Boumsong, Siem de Jong, Xisco and Emmanuel Riviere are just some of the many names to have arrived at St James’ Park in the past and failed to make the grade or even leave the Geordie faithful with anything too nice to say about their time at the club.
However, sometimes a club can be lucky and miss out on a hyped player and thanks to technology, Newcastle can count themselves rather fortunate – although the type of technology and how it was used might be rather different to what may come to mind for some.
According to a report by the Sunday People (via the Mirror) back in 2012, the Magpies missed out on the signing of Gervinho.
It is claimed that because of the Ivorian’s weakness of texting on his mobile phone (something everyone these days can be guilty of), he SMS’ed his way out of a move to the north-east after Newcastle had a £10million offer accepted by Lille.
A Newcastle source stated to the Sunday People: “Somehow, we knew at that moment Gervinho would not be joining us.
“We were offering him a good deal but he was more interested in texting. We never found out who he was texting, but that was it as far as we were concerned.”
Gervinho did eventually get a move to the Premier League that summer though, as he joined Arsenal for a fee thought to be around £10.8m – although Newcastle must be chuckling about how that turned out for the Gunners.
In the two seasons he spent at the Emirates Stadium, the striker scored just nine Premier League goals in 46 appearances before he was shipped out to AS Roma.
The 31-year-old then joined Hebei China Fortune before making a return to Italy and signing for Parma, where his goal return has finally reached double figures for the first time since his Lille days.
With that stat in mind, Newcastle must surely be delighted that they missed out on another disastrous acquisition and dodged that potentially expensive bullet.
Newcastle fans, how pleased are you Gervinho texted his way out of joining the club? Let us know below!