Joe Allen's future has been a worry for many Reds this summer, though opinions are split on wanting him to stay and wanting a more physical or ostensibly dynamic replacement. Allen is aware of all the speculation, and when asked about it recently, gave the same measured comments one would expect from a player whose calling card is composure and precision.
Speaking on the past season and as reported by the Guardian, Wee Joe highlighted that "[i]t always helps you when you step out on the pitch. People have talked about the improvement in my game this year but it's almost a back-handed compliment in some ways. In the first half of the season, I hadn't played." Notwithstanding the recognition that maybe some folks should not have been surprised that additional game time resulted in an uptick in form, the midfielder found time to thank the fans for their "brilliant support in the last few months," which hopefully - at least for this writer - will persuade him to stay on for another year or two.
Whether the chicken enthusiast will stay will be decided after the Euros, according to the player: "I think [staying] hinges on the pre-season plans and what exactly the club are hoping to do, everything comes into that. The acquisitions and who they are going to get in. Until all that happens it is difficult to answer that question...I'm sure there will be a week or two after the Euros before any discussions are had."
Very little of this will come as a surprise to Reds across the globe, but we bring this bit to you today for an additional reason: because Leicester have had a purported 18mm pound bid for N'Zonzi rejected, Sevilla are losing Banega to Inter Milan, and Joe Allen may be leaving Liverpool, totally unsourced reports in various footballing publications are floating the idea that Liverpool are now in for N'Zonzi and Sevilla are very interested in Joe Allen. Both players would fit either team: N'Zonzi giving some much-needed steel to the Liverpool midfield, and Allen adding a pinch of creativity and composure to Sevilla's, which gives legs to the rumor, if one squints very, very hard.
Make of these facts what you will, but transfer season is nothing if not an ouroborous to be enjoyed. Perhaps we actually will see a player swap in our lifetimes.