There are few young players as hyped, talented and intriguing as Paulo Henrique Ganso. The next great Brazilian playmaker, Ganso has made the jump to the national team, teamed with Neymar to win Copa Libertadores with Santos and now he's ready to move onto Europe. It's no surprise that Tottenham Hotspur would show interest in a 22-year-old star like Ganso and if reports are to be believed (they're not, but it makes for a more fun story if they are), they have shown interest. It is also no surprise that Harry Redknapp claims to have no idea who Ganso is.
After winning Copa Libertadores, Santos basically decided that the next Brasileiro didn't matter and that the Club World Cup was their priority. Unsurprisingly, they struggled in the Brasileiro and then got their doors blown off by Barcelona in the Club World Cup. Santos have had their moment in the sun, Barcelona buried them and now it's time for them to move on. More specifically, it's time for Ganso to move on and Santos seem resigned to his departure.
"The desire of the player is most important," Santos president Luis Ribeiro told O Globo. "If Ganso wants to leave Santos and our interests are preserved, we can negotiate."
Ding, ding, ding! Spurs have an in! Santos are willing to sell so this is perfect, right? Then comes a Telegraph report that Ganso's agent was in London talking about a £15 million move to White Hart Lane. Huzzah! Of course, just when it was time to get excited, Harry threw on his clueless face and went to a Friday press conference.
"Ganso? I have never heard of him. I don't know him, where does he play? What position?" Redknapp said. "I don't get to Brazil much. We got Sandro from there but other than that, no."
The best part is that it is all too believable that Harry has no idea who he is, but it is equally believable that Harry knows exactly who he is and is saying this just a few days before he wraps up a deal for Ganso (or more accurately he tells Daniel Levy to wrap up a deal). The odds of Harry knowing about Ganso are probably about the same as the odds that the report of Spurs chasing Ganso is real and that's what makes it so much fun. Well, that and that Ganso is absolutely brilliant.
If you can get past Ganso's history of little knicks, knocks and niggles that keep him out a couple weeks here and there (think Rafael van der Vaart), then there's little not to love about Ganso. He's big and strong with brilliant vision and has an unnatural knack for being able to play a pass just perfectly. He is that attacking midfielder you want to be the team's playmaker that you don't have on your FIFA team so you create him and add him to your team, except you'd never have the foresight to give him a name as fantastic as Goose.
With a player like that, it's no surprise that clubs from all around the world are chasing him, but because everyone is chasing him, Harry has no idea who he is (or maybe he does) and that is why Harry is the best.