The rumor mill is nothing if not persistent. Mario Gomez has been on the outs at Fiorentina for a while now, but the market for his services has been stubbornly quiet. We've seen a lot of rumors in recent weeks and days, but none have gained any great traction.
It has been said he must leave Fiorentina: his salary is set to rise to $5.5 million next season, and that is simply too damn high for his club.The list of teams the rumor mill would like us to believe he could join seems to grow on an almost daily basis: the New York clubs of MLS, unspecified offers from the United Arab Emirates, Hoffenheim, Dortmund, Schalke, Shakhtar Donetsk, Swansea City, and Hertha BSC...actually, scratch Hertha BSC.
The one thing we seem to be able to count on right now is Mario Gomez will not be heading to Hertha. Berlin-based paper B.Z. reported that his wage demands didn't fit the club's budget. Uli Ferber, Gomez's agent, told German outlet Sport1 there was no truth to the rumor.
Still, there is no shortage of clubs out there to take Hertha's place. Among them: Galatasaray. It has taken the news of Gomez's availability a little longer than might be expected to work its way around to Turkey, but it's making up for lost time with a concerted whispering campaign linking Gomez to the reigning Turkish Super Lig champion.
Galatasaray president Dursun Ozbek promised his club's fans there would be transfer activity, and the rumor mill has been keen to keep the fires of speculation burning. Kevin-Prince Boateng is alleged to be on the team's radar; whispers about Lukas Podolski moving to Istanbul haven't really stopped since January: what's one more international-class German forward? And the idea of Mario Gomez moving to Galatasaray is surely less far-fetched than the rumor that the club was chasing Zlatan Ibrahimovic - which was only recently shot down.
In truth, Galatasaray is being linked to anyone and everyone at the moment, so Gomez's name should be cause for neither surprise nor great excitement. He might move to Turkey, he might move to a lot of places. Though several Turkish journalists seem to think there is something to the Gomez chatter:
Fiorentina ile yollarını ayıran Mario Gomez menajerler aracılığıyla Beşiktaş ve Galatasaray'a önerilmiş.— EKREM KONUR (@Ekremkonur) June 11, 2015
Galatasaray'da gündem Gignac ya da Mario Gomez olsa da hedefteki golcü ŞL klasında bir isim. Van Persie haberleri gelirse şaşırmayın derim..— Erkut Öztürk (@ErkutOzturk) June 11, 2015
As for the man himself, Mario Gomez has taken a moment to announce renewed focus on getting himself back into the German national team set-up.
Wherever he plays next season, he's in a mood to be certain his work gets him considered for international play again. That would seem to be further bad news for the suggestion he might move to MLS. It is very possible for a player to get Euro national team looks while toiling away in North America: the top flight of the US and Canada is no longer obscurity. But Gomez has dropped out of the Germany squad recently because he has not been at the top of his game, and a few goals in the UEFA Champions League next season would likely count more toward persuading Joachim Low of his return to form than a dozen or so in MLS.
Even Europa League performances are probably more helpful than MLS if Gomez's priority is to win Germany's attention. Fiorentina can't offer the Champions League, but it will be in the 2015-16 Europa League. We've been told Gomez has to leave the club for simple financial reasons, but it has been widely reported that the team has appointed Paulo Sousa as its new head coach for next season.
Sousa can't bring Fiorentina money it doesn't have, but he might bring a different perspective on how current resources should be allocated. Gomez seems almost certain to leave Florence, but clubs have changed direction under new management before.
All of which just provides further reason to believe we won't be seeing the German striker in MLS any time soon.