It was while listening to the regurgitated sports news bulletins on TalkSport during my eleventh consecutive night shift at KFC that I had the idea to pass myself off as the biggest ‘in the know’ in the business. I had been worried that my own team (Manchester United) hadn’t been linked with anyone during the transfer window and felt it was so important that we were. And barring turning up at Old Trafford and hanging around the entrance myself (I’ve never been there yet anyway) I needed to know what was going on, and felt like others needed the same kind of perpetual, inane, online transfer chatter I was craving.
So, as I walked back to my South London bedsit repeatedly checking the Sky Sports News app on my iPhone, I resolved to do something that would revolutionise social media. I would become the transfer window guru.
It was – like me – really quite simple. I thought plagiarism was something spread by rats in the Middle Ages until I realised what could be done with just a Twitter account, a pseudonym and a constant supply of other people’s news to pass off as my own. While initially the rewards I expected were not financial (I once turned down an offer of £4000 – half my yearly salary – for the account), it was certainly a boost to my fragile sense of self worth. People were beginning to hang on my every word; none of which were “do you want to go large on that?”
Success was immediate. All those hours glued to Teletext and the delightful Natalie Sawyer, TV remote in my free hand, were paying off.
All I needed was plenty of spare time during the day and super fast fingers to type the words ‘BREAKING’ and ‘EXCLUSIVE’ before anyone could realise the transfer rumours had already been put into the public domain by someone who actually had the information to back them up.
Back on my night shifts, the drive-thru was often slow, so between orders for Family Buckets and Zinger Towers I’d lay my greasy paws on the nearest copy of The Sun or Metro, fire up Newsnow and log in to the BBC and Sky gossip columns and start spreading the joy across the Twittersphere. Suddenly I was important.
Believe me, being the industry’s leading transfer rumour specialist isn’t as easy as it sounds. I am constantly being ridiculed by those not in the know and a fair proportion of my hundreds of thousands of followers are just haters. But as Taylor Swift says, haters gonna hate, hate, hate. I just bring the news and stories to my fans and love the banter that goes with it.
Nowadays, I have to admit that I’ve succumbed to economic pressures and now use my account to promote betting companies who want to advertise their offers to my legion of disciples. Of course, having gained plenty of business acumen through my weekly stock takes for the Colonel, I realise that accepting this money is a great way to augment my earnings from KFC and it means I can now afford to put two bars on my electric fire during the winter. That bedsit can be a cold and lonely place and I need to warm it up for when Ms. Sawyer finally accepts my invitation to come round for dinner.
It’s been two years now and my legend status is secure thanks to the hundreds of transfer stories and rumours I’ve broken through my social media accounts. Some of them have even proven to be true, which is a bonus, and for some gullible pricks, this has them convinced I actually know what I’m talking about rather than being some complete no-mark with his hands constantly up a chicken’s arse.
To the faithful I am simply known as ‘The Chief’.
And here’s an exclusive I can break to you with certainty – this January transfer window will be the most exciting yet. And without me, it would be nothing.