If you needed further proof that 2020 is the year the simulation of reality has glitched out of all control, then here it is: Jeff Hendrick is being linked with AC Milan.
No, this isn't some other Jeff Hendrick lighting up the youth ranks at some German club or whatever; this is the 28-year-old Burnley midfield utility man who is officially out of contract this summer.
And he's being linked with Milan.
AC Milan have shown an interest in signing Burnley midfielder Jeff Hendrick on a free transfer.— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) May 29, 2020
The story was first brought to the forefront by Sky Sports at the tail end of last week, who said that the seven-time European champions have 'expressed an interest' in signing a player whose greatest club achievement - to date - is finishing seventh in the Premier League.
But as outlandish as it might seem, it has been backed up by the Irish edition of the Independent, who say that the Rossoneri's interest is in fact genuine - but that Hendrick is, hilariously, in no rush to join.
The report goes on to claim that there fundamentally isn't too much of a difference between Burnley and Milan, given that they occupy broadly similar standings in their domestic divisions - Burnley tenth in the Premier League while Milan languish in seventh in Serie A.
That's a bit of a claim. Milan might be in a state of turmoil, with no apparent vision and no idea who will be leading the club from 2020/21, but they are one of the biggest and most iconic clubs in the world. If they go on to do a Sunderland and drop into Serie C, then we might be able to compare their drawing power to that of Burnley's, but they're not quite there yet.
Regardless of that, however, the funniest part about this story is the bizarre, distorted realism it possesses.
It highlights one of two things - it's either a new low for the rumour mill, or a sobering sign of the times for Milan, who might well have gone from Andrea Pirlo and Gennaro Gattuso to Diego Laxalt and Jeff Hendrick in the space of a decade.
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Source : 90min