This football artist’s latest project is all about the transfer moves that might have been
Would any of these players have achieved more at another club?
Some football transfer rumours seem too good to be true, and while most never happen, some come closer to becoming reality than you might have thought.
Dave Will is a football artist currently taking some of those near misses and converting them into imagined newspaper headlines to illustrate what might have been.
Because who doesn’t love to imagine an alternative football present?
No 5 in the Failed Football Series: Zlatan Ibrahimovic Swipe to read the story of how one of the worlds greatest strikers missed out on signing for Arsenal as an 18 year old because he felt he was too good for a trial! How would Arsenal and Arsene Wengers careers have altered if Zlatan had signed in 2000? Would he still have ended up at United? Would Arsenal have won more leagues and cups or even a Champions League with him in the team? Let us know your theories below! And if you have a great transfer story, leave a comment… . . . . . #zlatan #ibrahimovic #arsenal #wenger #trial #transfer #failed #football #transfers #news #fakenews #illustration
“I used to have this book called What Didn’t Happen Next: Nick Hancock’s Alternative History of Football, and as a teenager I loved it,” said Dave.
“It picked out famous moments, like Diego Maradona’s handball, and then proposed a new series of events that would have taken place if that goal hadn’t been given.
“It’s similar to why games like the Fifa titles and Football Manager are so popular,” Dave continued. “You can start to imagine a fictional world where your team manage to pull off a great transfer that could propel your side to new heights.”
A perfect example of Dave’s work is this mocked-up newspaper, wonderfully titled The Daily Football, which ponders what the back pages might have looked like had Maradona signed for Sheffield United early in his career.
No 1 in the Failed Football series: Diego Maradona Swipe to see the full story of how Diego nearly signed for Sheffield United. Instead, his big move to Europe came 4 years later when he signed for FC Barcelona. But how would Football history be different if the Sheffield United transfer had succeeded? Let us know your theories in the comments below!
Would Maradona have won two World Cups had he enjoyed a football education in the north of England, for example? Very possibly, but which nearly-transfers does Dave think would, and wouldn’t, have worked?
“I’m sure Wayne Rooney to Chelsea, Dani Alves to Manchester City, and even Paul Pogba to Barcelona would have all turned out OK,” said Dave.
No 12 in the Failed Football Series: Dani Alves Swipe to read the story of how Dani Alves could have ended up in the Premier League if it wasn't for his wife and the influence of Neymar. But would he have coped with the speed and hustle of the Premier League? Let us know your theories below! And if you have a great transfer story, leave a comment… . . . . . #mancity #psg #transfer #failed #football #transfers #news #fakenews #illustration
“However, Lionel Messi to Rangers sounds like a complete disaster – imagine him as a 17-year-old against some tough-tackling Scottish centre-halves playing away on a terrible pitch.”
No 11 in the Failed Football Series: Lionel Messi Swipe to read the story of how Lionel Messi could have ended up in the Scottish league at Glasgow Rangers. Plus, when that fell through, which other Barca legend could have moved to Scotland?! How would Messi have succeeded in football if he had spent time on loan at Rangers? Would he have survived? Let us know your theories below! And if you have a great transfer story, leave a comment… . . . . . #Rangers #barcelona #messi #lionelmessi #iniesta #transfer #failed #football #transfers #news #fakenews #illustration
And while it would have been incredible to have seen Roberto Carlos dominating the left-hand side of the Upton Park pitch in the 1990s for example, Dave is realistic about what the reality might have been, saying: “It’s hard to imagine young players like Maradona and Zinedine Zidane would have reached the heights they did if they had come to England when they had the chance.”
Still, it’s fun to imagine, something Dave’s Instagram posts encourage. This year the football artist is producing a series of projects on Instagram, with the Failed Football series the latest.
No 9 in the Failed Football Series: Roberto Carlos Swipe to read the story of how Brazilian legend Roberto Carlos could have signed for Aston Villa. The free-kick specialist spoke to the club in 1995, but ended up at Inter Milan instead. How would his career have been different if he signed for Villa? Would his banana shot vs France in 1997 have gone wide if he was a Villa player rather than a star of Real Madrid?!? Let us know your theories below! And if you have a great transfer story, leave a comment… . . . . . #astonvilla #realmadrid #robertocarlos #transfer #failed #football #transfers #news #fakenews #illustration
“I’m really enjoying the project so far,” he said. “It can be intense with any daily project trying to keep up, but it’s great fun.
“People seem to be getting involved with it, and I’m getting plenty of suggestions, so that gives me great encouragement to continue!”
To follow the rest of the series, Dave’s work can be found on his Instagram page, right here.