This afternoon, Sky Sports News reported that Nicolas Anelka had walked out of a West Brom training session and would retire from football.
Sky sources: West Brom’s Nicolas Anelka walks out of training and tells staff he is retiring #SSN
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) August 22, 2013
The story caused the internet to explode with rumours and speculation. Sports sites battled to break the news first. However, it became clear that the story wasn't quite as clearcut as it first seemed. Rumours appeared that he'd suffered a close personal loss. Birmingham Mail journalist tweeted that Anelka's agent had died.
#wba insist Anelka has NOT retired. I understand his agent has died - which has hit him badly. What the future holds, we'll see
— Chris Lepkowski (@chrislepkowski) August 22, 2013
And West Brom announced Anelka will miss the club's weekend game against Everton on "compassionate grounds".
According to Transfermarkt.com, Anelka's agent is his brother Claude.
Now it's said that Anelka walked off the pitch because his agent died. Wait a moment, wasn't his brother the agent?!
— Tancredi Palmeri (@tancredipalmeri) August 22, 2013
BBC journalist Ben Smith has since stated that Anelka's agent has died but that it is not his brother.
Anelka's agent (not brother) has died. #WBA will give him time to get his head right. Suggestions he may retire are premature
— Ben Smith (@BenSmithBBC) August 22, 2013
Sometimes it helps to wait for all the facts to come out before jumping to conclusions.