As we're all set for one of the craziest transfer windows known to man this summer, what with the new Premier League TV deal money kicking in, and several massive clubs in re-building mode, we thought it would be nice to have a look back at a more peaceful time, five years ago.
As it turns out, transfer news was just as bizarre back then, so we've dug through the headlines and picked out some of the best stories designed to get various clubs' fans hopes up only for nothing to ever materialise.
You can't help but feel that Juve's resurgance would have been fast-tracked had they actually taken the plunge on Kevin Doyle.
Kevin Doyle to Arsenal/Juventus
No, your eyes do not deceive you. According to a (perhaps slightly optimistic) report in 'The Sunday World' (via espnfc.com), after Doyle impressed against Italy in the 2010 World Cup qualifiers Juventus took note of the Wexford man's progress for Wolves in the Premier League. But they would face stiff competition from Arsenal, whose manager Arsene Wenger had been a long-term fan of Doyle and was contemplating a £12 million bid. And, just for the novelty of writing it: as well as Kevin Doyle, Arsenal also had Karim Benzema in their sights.
Current club: Colorado Rapids
Raul to Blackburn Rovers
Rovers fans dreamed that Madrid legend Raul might descend on Ewood Park in all his poaching glory, as in a moment of brief lightheadedness the 15th-placed side in the Premier League tried to coax the Bernabeu's record appearance maker into a move. Somehow, he resisted, as the BBC confirmed. Rovers' next target? World Cup winner Vincenzo Iaquinta. Raul went on to enjoy a decorated final few years at the equally prestigious Al Sadd and New York Cosmos clubs in the respective footballing nirvanas of Qatar and the US. Purely for footballing reasons, of course.
Current club: Retired
Niklas Bendtner to Bayern Munich
As Miroslav Klose looked set to depart for Valencia (he would eventually stay), Bayern Munich sought a commanding, consistent, powerful striker to lead the line and regularly bang in goals. According to the sources of the esteemed 'Daily Mail', their gaze fell upon the lumbering, inconsistent but then still-promising Dane, who had failed to meet expectations at Arsenal. Alas, the German club saw sense and Bendtner would instead spend the following season at Sunderland, scoring eight goals. He and VfL Wolfsburg recently mutually terminated his contract after the club realised he was more of a "threat for the collective" team than to the opposition goal.
Current club: Free agent
Fabio Cannavaro to QPR
The Mail raised pulses around Loftus Road in the summer of 2011 as, following promotion from the Championship, it reported that QPR chairman (until August 2011) Flavio Briatore liked the idea of having fellow Italian and World Cup-winning captain Cannavaro commanding Rangers' defence. After a season gracing the prestigious arenas of Qatar football with Al Ahli FC, Cannavaro's fitness may have been dubious, but this didn't disturb the frantic turning of the Shepherd's Bush rumour mill. Cannavaro's career instead ended with a never-fulfilled agreement to play in an Indian super league alongside Jay-Jay Okocha and Hernan Crespo.
Current club: Retired
John O'Shea to Celtic
A campaign as a second-choice defender at United, but one where he still started 29 games and won a Premier League medal, led several clubs to monitor the Waterford man's progress. One of these was Neil Lennon's Celtic, according to the Irish Daily Star. Big John was said at the time to be uninterested in a move to Sunderland with the other options open to him, and you wouldn't blame him, though it is a bit sad that Scottish football fans have never been able to enjoy the side of O'Shea in full flow down the wing. Then again, neither have English or Irish football fans.
Current club: Sunderland
Robbie Keane to Roma
It's a nice thought, massive posters of 'Roberto Keano' spread out in the Stadio Olimpico, Roma's frantic fans chanting 'Keano, Keano' as he celebrates another successful one-two with Francesco Totti, recounting his childhood dreams of playing for Roma in emotional, broken Italian to the adoring press. As the Mail, again, would have us believe, Spurs, keen on Roma striker Mirko Vucinic, were prepared to put the Ireland captain on a plane along with Niko Kranjcar and future GAA icon David Bentley to make it happen. But no, it wasn't to be. Before long Tallaght's favourite son would be at his beloved LA Galaxy and, bar a short loan spell at Aston Villa, he's been there ever since.
Current club: LA Galaxy
Mevlut Erdinç to Tottenham
After a sensational nine goals in thirty-four appearances for PSG the Turkish international with (somehow) a £12 million price tag was rumoured to be destined for White Hart Lane to compete with Peter Crouch up front. But fate brought him elsewhere, and he now togs out for the (nearly impossible to spell and even harder to watch) Guingamp near the bottom of Ligue 1, on loan from Hannover for whom his strike rate was 0%. Spurs fans will be glad that, in this case, speculation from the 'Metro' didn't turn into reality.
Current club: Guingamp
So there you have it.
John O'Shea to Celtic looks far more realistic these days than it did back then which is funny considering it is not being discussed at the moment, Doyler never did get his Serie A move, and Niklas Bendtner probably still fancies himself capable of doing a job at Bayern despite having his contract terminated by Wolfsburg.