LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 22: Sir Alex Ferguson manager of Manchester United shakes hands with Arsene Wenger manager of Arsenal after the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Manchester United at Emirates Stadium on January 22, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
On Monday evening, the Daily Mirror reported that Sir Alex Ferguson had personally called Arsene Wenger to discuss the Robin van Persie transfer. Normally such telephone transcripts would be unavailable to the outside world, but I'm proud to announce that The Short Fuse has gained access to said transcript as part of our first ever exclusive*!
Read more after the jump:
Scene: Arsene Wenger is sitting in his office at about 11:30 AM. His cell phone rings, playing The Well-Tempered Clavier by JS Bach, and as he looks down, he sees a 161 area code. He picks up, thinking it's the cell phone of Roberto M., who has a 161 code, but it's actually Sir Alex Ferguson on his 1986-vintage landline phone.
Unknown, Scottish brogue: Arsene, it's me, Alex.
AW: Oh. Yes, hello, Alex.
SAF: Did you get my latest bid for van Persie? It's the best I can offer, really. £17.5m, and Danny Welbeck on loan.
AW: Yes, I believe I did get a little bit glance at it. But I must say, Ivan told me he thought it was a joke.
SAF: A JOKE! A JOKE! WHO THE HELL DOES THIS IVAN CHAP THINK HE IS, EH? EH?
SAF: Sorry, Arsene. But you've got to help me, here, Arsene. We're not that different from you. Come on, Arsene. I can up it up to £17.75m. Please do me this one favour, Arsene.
AW: I understand your desperation, Alex, but I must tell you, I have a little bit of a phone call coming in from the 161 area. I believe it is Roberto, I was expecting his call.
SAF: ROBERTO?!? NO, LET ME--
Arsene puts Ferguson on hold.
Arsene, toying with Ferguson, lets him in on the conference call that he's having with Roberto M.
AW: It's been excellent doing business with you, Roberto. I'll go tell him now that he can go, and I'll tell Arsenal.com that it's a done deal. Talk to you soon, Roberto. Yes, bye.
AW hangs up on RM.
SAF: DONE DEAL? DONE DEAL? BUT YOU WERE GOING TO--NEVERMIND, I'LL OFFER £25M, JUST CALL ROBERTO AND TELL HIM IT'S OFF
AW: You want to spend £25m on Ryo Miyaichi, Alex? It's a very generous offer, but I haven't you got a lot of wingers?
Ferguson sounds distracted, flustered
SAF: Yes, I'll offer £25--wait. Ryo--Who the fooking hell is that?
AW: Ryo Miyaichi. Our young Japanese midfielder. Roberto generously offered to take him on loan.
SAF: Roberto Mancini?
AW: No, Roberto Martinez. Why would I be talking to Mancini?
Arsene's phone starts to beep.
AW: I'm sorry, Alex, but I think my phone is out of minutes. Phone calls to Spain can be very expensive. If you want to negotiate for any of our players, you can do it through the usual channels. Au revoir!
SAF: [unintelligible, we think he may have swore into his wine glass]
*If you haven't guessed yet, this is purely facetious.