Thursday, 12 January 2012

Two Feet Bad

Ah the two-footed lunge. The much-loved staple of Inspector Clouseau has become the talking point of British football.

Here's righteous Stevie G mistaking an Evertonian for a big puddle

Messrs Hansen, Dixon, and another chavvily-togged appearance by Shearer saw them berate the referees in this country for their lack of consistency. Clearly Glen Johnson’s Scholesian torpedo challenge was at least the equal of the Kompany effort at the weekend and Lee Mason did nowt.

Neither of them was as bad as Lampard’s effort the other week, but at least English football’s next couch potato (Christine will be training him up as we speak) had the good grace to admit that he thought he was off.

So what to do?

I’ve looked through the FIFA Laws of the Game thingammy I can’t find owt that says a two-footed tackle is a definite red card. Mind you, I can’t say I’ve read it in detail as, oh I dunno, I had some pins to stick in my eyes and that seemed preferable.

There’s lot of stuff on violent conduct but of course this is all down to interpretation and FIFA directives don’t help the officials whatsoever. What’s the difference between ‘careless’ and ‘reckless’? Surely it depends on the player, and I’m sure Mario Balotelli couldn’t distinguish between the two.

How many players and managers have insisted that there was no evil intent behind a challenge, and berated the poor old man in black for his inability to see into the mind of the guilty party. It seems that officials might have to be sent on a course in Criminal Psychology in order to enhance their credentials.

In the wet and slippery months, and I remember them well in the early days of my marriage, there was a delight in the sudden availability of the sliding tackle: the aniticipation of setting off into a challenge some thirty feet away from their nippy scuzzbucket winger; the satisfaction at the lack of friction as you ploughed new furrows into the cloddy earth; and the pleasure as you took out one or more of the following – the ball, the man, or the pitchside parents who were hollering like mad dogs from under their McClarenesque brollies.

Top slidey work

The criterion of success or failure in a tackle used to be ‘did you get the ball?’ That was it. (In both Kompany and Johnson’s cases, they did just that, very cleanly.) Wise creative types would leap nimbly out of the way of the speeding sideboard that was travelling towards him rather than take the hit (and again, Nani and Lescott did just that.)

These days, the balance has been lopsided in the favour of the attacker. Too many of them exploit this and spend way too much time behaving less like footballers and more like tumbleweed, but then FIFA shouldn’t be indulging the thespian fraternity of modern footy either and post-match bans based on desperate simulation should be just as punitive as any other censure.

But just as you can no longer get your hands on a decent plumber or chippy these days without having a nodding acquaintance with the Cyrillic alphabet (so I’m told by the odd racist barfly), it seems this country and the sport as a whole has lost the art of tackling. And I don’t mean clogging.

You look at the United team that crumbled at the Sports Direct Arena (that phrase rolls off the tongue like peanut butter) and not one of their midfield would know a block or tackle if dropped down from a pulley system and smacked ‘em on the head. Michael Carrick is supposed to be a holding midfielder but the only thing I saw him holding was Demba Ba’s coat while the centre-forward waltzed off towards the increasingly creaky Rio Ferdinand.

Getting the ball back off an opponent is one of the most important parts of football. Just ask Barcelona’s opponents. It’s no coincidence that Spurs’s fine season has coincided with the arrival of Scott Parker, one of the few players in the country who knows how to do it.

Give it a couple of years and I can see Scotty running workshops in the ancient art in some backwoods studio alongside some woodturners and whittlers.

But if we really want consistency from our refs then maybe they should just make it a clear-cut rule. Two feet off the ground means a red card. No questions asked. Forget the notional difference between careless and reckless.

That might seem bloody stupid – and it’s no more dumb than the laws around players whipping off shirts in celebration - but if we leave it to some sort of interpretation then we’re going to have more schoolboy spats between fellow professionals as happened in the tunnel at the Etihad.

Clearly Mancini’s Mummy didn’t give him what he wanted for Christmas. Blaming Rooney for Kompany’s dismissal was blinking feeble, and his needle about Johnson’s challenge had as much to do with the fact that his team were poor as the not unreasonable sense of injustice.

Indeed Citeh have ground to a bit of a halt just now and when Silva and Yaya aren’t about they lack both drive and invention. They worked bloody hard against Liverpool in the second half but the English contingent of Johnson, Barry and Milner are just plucky little plodders when compared with the Spaniard. It just reminds you that getting your hopes up for Euro 2012 is pure folly.

And of course this all means that Tottenham loom ever larger in the wing-mirrors. Adebayor’s finishing still has the cold calmness of a Charlie Sheen tweet, but you’ve got to fancy their chances if the Mancs keep on having to chug about Europe for the rest of the season in the hope of winning European football’s version of the Kinder Egg.

Manu indicates how far he missed with his latest effort

If they can just get their defenders to not challenge for the ball in the horizontal, it might just happen...

236 comments:

  1. I thought Kompany's tackle was a good one .....

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  2. I believe it's a directive from FIFA to red card a two footed challenge.

    Can't imagine we'd finish a game with 11 men when we had Allan Hunter and Kevin Beattie at the back.

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  3. Hey Robbo - over 500 "members" on here hey - not that numbers matter - unless its goals for - thats important

    and Jacks - was that Blackbusters comments true re Ed Mill????

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  4. It was FBH.

    It was obviously a predictive text moment,but it hasn't helped him much.

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  5. re Blackbusters: whats worse, a typo by Ed, or a rather intentional go by the PM on the tourette sufferers?

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  6. In the wet and slippery months, and I remember them well in the early days of my marriage

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    naughty.

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  7. Video Ref.

    sitting there on the touchline, just correcting the onfield ref if he made an error. other than that, let the game roll on.

    too simple to work?

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  8. The point of criminalising the two-footed tackle is to protect the player being tackled. If Nani or Lescott had their leg infront of the ball theres a big chance that their leg would be snapped off. If anything a two-footed challenge is a cowardly tackle primarily used to help prevent themselves getting hurt, also it is used to deter the opponent from challenging for a 50-50 ball but also unfortunately is used to hurt the opposing player(see Gerrard's tackle above). Johnson's last night was a big lunge, he should have been sent packing. Consistency is a major problem in refereeing in general, not just this particular type of tackle.

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  9. The argument is that if you have two feet off the ground then you are not in control. Yet there are numerous sports in which people are well in control and have two feet off the ground, diving, gymnastics, motor racing to name but three.

    And the issue is clearly not about consistency, as refs have been consistently bent while adjudicting Man Utd for years, so is anyone surprised that Kompany got sent off?

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  10. eeoreJan 12, 2012 07:30 AM

    And the issue is clearly not about consistency, as refs have been consistently bent while adjudicting Man Utd for years, so is anyone surprised that Kompany got sent off?
    -----------------
    Jealousy, its such a debilitating disease.

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  11. What RodTheFierce said. If you jump forwards with both feet off the ground you no longer have control and the full mass of the player is going to land whereever his feet do - if that is on a player's ankle it will not be pretty. Nani hurdled the tackle, but Kompany had no way of knowing he would. If Nani hadn't he _might_ now be on crutches. This is no longer considered acceptable in professional football (mainly due to the money involved, but that is another discussion). A studs up, sliding tackle could be nasty, but is far safer than a lunge as there is far less mass behind it as the centre-backs arse will already be on the ground.

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  12. It's tempting to say that what's happened to football is Sepp Blatter's Nanny State. Although you can just imagine what the FIFA top brass would get up to with the nanny.

    Re Spits's video ref notion. Well, all the tedious old twots who bleat on about football will tell you it'll slow the game down. Which matter a toss outside of the helter-skelter 100 mph environs of 'the most exciting league in the world. I reckon it might do away with a lot of this post-match shite where invariably a team's performance is blamed on the poor officials. In the spirit of British democracy why don't we try it out in Scotland first?

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    1. They better do it quick before Scotland fucks off out of the union!! Robbo, is it just my computer or are the times all fecked up again? Very good blog by the way, I remember watching that derby game with the Gerrard tackle, it was the dirtiest tackle I'd seen since Keane's and he didn't even get sent off!

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  13. the thing is Robbo, after every contentious decision, the next minute or so is almost always spent bickering with and harassing the ref from one party or the other or the both.

    I cant see how the ref calling the play back a couple of yards can be possibly worse.

    Plus, the diving and play acting will be sorted out like it never existed.

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  14. there are simple ways to clarify rules and there are even more simple ways to make rules uninterpretable. spitfire is exactly right to highlight the fact that the 90 seconds after every contentious decision is spent harassing the ref. a video ref could, with todays technology, make a conclusion within a minute and anyone who argues with the ref after the decision is made gets yellow. however, if we just went with the last bit, everyone who argues with the ref gets a yellow then maybe we cut down on the time spent bickering with the ref in the first place. that way FIFA is happy, and we stop overpaid knobs arguing the toss about any decision the refs make. i've said many a time, the day FIFA pass a ruling whereby only the captain of either team has the right to speak to any of the officials then football will be in a better place.
    did they not trial the behind the goal officials idea in scotland?.. and look what a pile of shite that has turned out to be. i've never seen a single decision made by one of these officials. but robbo, i whole-heartedly agree with you that any rule trials should be conducted in scotland!!!

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  15. Robbo,

    Read as far as 'started reading the rules of the game and got bored' and gave up. What the bollocks are you chatting? I thought this was a game you showed some interest in?

    Top-end refs get together to make decisions about interpretations to keep things consistent. It doesn't need to say anything about two feet in the rulebook for that to happen. Crying out loud, I expect this sort of blinkered balls from a MOTD pundit, but you?

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  16. Man city have applied to have a couple of useless tits removed for free in the nhs

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  17. good stuff Robbo, you always spark the best debate on the insolvable but highly ponderable matters. Jaffa cakes for example.

    Any road, I think that picture of Stevie G. was used in a spot the ball contest on the back page of the pink echo last week. Now I see where the ball is it's apparent that a stout pair of shin pads won't be of much use to the poor grounded Naysmith. Did he pile on and butt him after the initial challenge?

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  18. 3:16pm? Does it think I'm on the West Coast? by 'eck it's fuckin' cold for California.

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  19. Good blog Robbo.

    Any rule or law that is open to interpretation is going to cause the official to be fucked over by one side or the other. That is why the rules governing the two footed lunge and simulation, for example, don't work.

    I'm on the West Coast Trott and I can assure you that it is very fucking hot at the moment.

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  20. Howdy folks. Just got back from my road trip - 12 days, 3 states, 3,423kms travelled by bicycle, kayak, horse and car. Trying to catch up with the blog but the last one is only letting me view the first 200 comments. The old racism debate went a good distance. Good to see (the debate, not the racism).

    And now this footballing hot potato - the two footed lunge. I remember Gerrard went through a phase of these tackles didn't he? And the majority of them went unpunished. The consistency of ref's has come up a lot in recent weeks and is starting to really become an issue. Replay technology has to be embraced.

    Looks nice out in Perth, Bo. Just watching the Test match on the tv. After some cold nights down in Canberra and the Snowy Mountains, I'm glad to be back to the 20 degree nights up here in Newcastle.

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  21. It's a hard life, noel, you lucky bastard. Not that I'm jealous or nuffink

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  22. Mawning all

    A two footed tackle has various dimensions

    1) two footed tackle from behind, defender wins the ball - still got to be a red card
    2) two footed tackle from behind, defender snaps opponents leg - worst case scenario, 5 match ban along with red card. If player/club appeals against the card then they should take up all medical expenses of the injured player.
    3) two footed tackle from behind, defender injures his own leg - 3 match ban to be applied after he is known to be match fit and medically certified by top doctors who know nothing about football. This eliminates chance of being biased or giving wrong opinions.
    4) two footed tackle from front, defender wins the ball, had good intention, opponent player is able to get on to his feet back - No card, ref plays on, both players should get extra fair play points
    5) two footed tackle from front, defender wins the ball, had good intention, opponent player is NOT able to get on to his feet back - yellow card to defender, free kick for opposition
    6) two footed tackle from front, defender wins the ball, had good intention, opponent player goes down with theatrics - yellow card to opponent player, free kick in favor of defender
    7) two footed tackle from front, defender snaps opponents legs, irrespective of intention, red card + 4 match ban, If player/club appeals against the card then they should take up all medical expenses of the injured player.
    8) two footed tackle from front, defender wins the ball, had bad intention**, opponent player may/may not be injured - red card + 4 match ban to defender.

    still in case there is an error in judgement, I will call for video ref.

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    1. just one thing I want ot know, how do you infer the intention of the player?

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    2. What does "had good intention" entail?

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    3. ** - primarily through the course of that particular match, I'd observe the player if he's consistently trying to foul the opposition, trying to pressurise ref etc. and of course if player has a bit of history as well with bad tackles.

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    4. mornin' lads, SS, what medical expenses, they have the NHS for that!

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  23. lawro has made a bet the Henry wont score for Arsenal the rest of 8 or so games he's got .

    ----

    I'd take the bet Lawro.

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  24. Port Vale have been hit by an injury-crisis ahead of their League Two match against Wimbledon - with only 13 players training this week.
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    blog, time to clean the boots and dron the kit, who knows, you might be called on

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  25. Harry Redknapp has taunted Premier League title rivals Manchester City by claiming Spurs have not bought their success like the Blues.
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    267 million quid: second only to Citeh and Chelsea.

    but he's right tho. they havent bought their success. What success?

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  26. I'm too good spit I'd embarrass them.

    On topic, I think the two footed tackle is clearly discriminatory vs one legged footballers and should be banned.

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  27. Good time to be a Spurs fan: most neutrals (excluding Gooners, obviously) seem to want us to win the league. Playing great football, and doing it on our own resources (before all the Gooners launch into this, look at the Swiss Ramble).

    Three things SS. 1. Not sure how the referee is supposed to determine the player's "intention". 2. Why should a deterrent penalty depend on the outcome? You'll only get players rolling over to try and get the opponent booked. 3. How sh1t were India today?

    Not been able to post for a couple of days. Couldn't link to comments.


    Jedi

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  28. India have been shite away from home. I didnt have much criticism against them when we lost 4-0 against England in summer as we were still basking in World Cup glory. But now enough is enough... the young players havent got it in them to survive in bowling friendly pitches of Australia, South Africa and England.

    Sachin... well he will get his 100th 100 eventually but too much has been made of it. I suppose he should have played ODI series against West Indies and got it there and would have come in much better frame of mind to Australia. But I've never read what's going on in his mind so.. I'll leave it there... he's too great a batsman and has already done enough for the country. It is upto youngsters coming through ranks to push out the likes of Dravid, Laxman and Sachin.

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  29. Well to be fair SS, as shit as India were, all away teams seem to be in the same boat. England, having thrashed India at home got walloped when they went here. Sri Lanka, tigers at home, getting thumped by SA in SA (incl getting bowled out for 40 odd runs). If this goes on, all matches will need to be played at a neutral venue to keep some interest going.

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  30. http://www.espncricinfo.com/page2/content/story/548404.html

    That's comedy gold!

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  31. Oh, I'm sorry, did realise you dont count the money if it comes from your own resources.

    Money spent, is money spent and Spurs are 3rd in the list so stop bleating about how well they are doing on peanuts.

    They are a rich, albeit small, club and are doing very well at the moment.

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  32. Hey did you see Sid waddells got a job as a newsreader? His first bulletin announced - one nun dead in Haiti

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  33. Life one big fucking joke eg

    Andy Carroll £35 million Haha

    French credit rating downgraded hehe

    Ed miliband hoho, oh.

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  34. That's almost as much as the Venky's paid for all of Blackburn!

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  35. They wuz robbed, trott.

    Secret Footballer on the Death Tackling. http://www.guardian.co.uk/global/blog/2012/jan/13/the-secret-footballer-tackle-obsession

    I think he's right but personally I enjoy seeing a big lad smearing some wee wizard of the dribble over the advertising hoardings.

    Ah well this us the road we're on ....skill and finesse....yawn. We won't get Football : the Thunderdome until Iran h-bombs America

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  36. * death OF tackling ....not Death Tackling, now that would be a red card

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    Replies
    1. You'd hope blog that the refs are consistent with that...

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  37. Chevvy Chase ruled the 80's. Just watching Fletch.

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  38. Slaves we're fucking slaves. Beer and football = Bread and circuses

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  39. My other Toilet Thought is that yes there is a god, and he's a malicious cunt.

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  40. Argentina international Tevez is willing to take a 40% pay cut, to £120,000-a-week, to force through a transfer to Italian side Inter Milan this month.
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    How he's expected to feed his family is beyound me. Poor sod.

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  41. And its nearer to Argentina, shoot his Geog teacher

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  42. Now its FFL time again

    got shafted by H2H in HtoH and knocked out of the Cup, 2 players gone 3 injured, wildcard or what?

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  43. My career could have been very different. But I've never taken the easy way out and, though I've always done some strange things with my career, when I look back I don't have many regrets. That said, I do envy Mark Hughes. I have never taken over a club that just needs the icing putting on the cake. I've always had to scrap for the ingredients to make the cake in the first place. Mark has taken over a fabulous club with the cake already made, he just has to put the icing on. With the fixtures coming up it is a great time to take over.


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    thats Colin Wanker on his successor.

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  44. "Someone left a cake out in the rain"

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  45. Good rob Bloggo

    Hey! I'm up against Super Marines in today's Robbo H2H. I'm sure the bugger has played his wildcard and is stuffing his team with Blackburners. Is there something I don't know?

    As for 2 footed tackles. Who gives a fuck? Football is being hi-jacked by middle class liberals. We'll soon have a elf n safety nazi overseeing the play.

    BTW. Patrice Evra is a crybaby. He should have lamped Suarez. WHAT HAPPENS ON THE PITCH SHOULD STAY ON THE PITCH.

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  46. Good luck to all your teams, especially mine. 9 points coming up, Mancs, Scousers and Gooners, easy! Come on Ye Whites!

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  47. Fucked!!! Yakubu sees red, and Millers 2-0 down at home

    Come back soon Demba

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  48. shocked that only two millwall players sent off

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  49. I think Steve keane is owed an apology

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  50. ok, forget the mancs, 6 points coming up, Scousers and Gooners, easy! Come on Ye Whites!

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  51. Yeah Blog, Steve Kean for England!

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  52. nahh, the catholic church only pays chicken feed.

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  53. Very true, Trott, they pays a poultry sum

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  54. Haha brilliant ... an opinion poll shows that a majority of Scots reject Scottish independence but a massive majority in England supports it

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  55. are the blackburn fans still planning to tar and feather him?

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  56. why is everyone so quiet? despite the full weekend of action.. is everyone shocked at how we made Swansea look like Barcelona?

    ok, since no one is saying it let me do the honors... Arsenal (the club that I love and support) have a shite squad, they really do, and all of us have defended Wenger from time to time, but its as much his fault as the board's, Players like Ramsey, Arshavin, Arteta, Djorou, Miguel, Arteta, Mertesacker, Benayoun, Walcott, are all decent but should not be in the starting line-up of a club of Arsenal's stature (whats left of it since we switched stadiums), Walcott should be an impact sub, as should Gervinho, Ramsey (as shit as he was today) and Arteta are good options, but only if the first choice midfielders are injured/rested,
    I felt way worse today then when we got beaten at old trafford, there was something about the defeat today that just doesn't sit right with me, the midfield and wingers were woeful,
    I squarely blame wenger, there are players like Pato available for 25 mill, no one will deny him the cash, not even the board, he should leave his f******g fantasy world already and wake up,

    rant over!

    --BeeZee

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    1. Rastafairy here,
      Another depressed Gooner but I think you have said it yourself in your rant - many of the players you mention, with exception maybe of "Gordon" Ramsey and Theo "y'know" Walcott, aren't first choice: Arshavin (at least I hope he's not first choice), Arteta (both of them ;) , Djorou, Miquel and Benayoun (can I add Rosicky) are really only playing because of the injuries. Vermaelen, Wilshere, Santos or Gibbs, Sagna or Jenkinson, even Diaby would probably be first choices. Probably a toss up between Mertesacker and Koscielny.

      Delete
  57. I think instead of typing your comment directly in the box that appears whn you click on reply, it would be better if we click the "add comment" link on the bottom left of the input field.

    That way, the comments will appear as in the previous incarnation of blogspot and not like the current conversational lay out.

    I mean, who the hell wants to have a conversation.

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    1. Damn, I just replied to the post above then read this.

      Shit, I've done it again haven't I?. But then if I just put "shit, I've done it again haven't I?" at the bottom then y'all wont know what's going on - you may even think I've just shit again!

      Delete
  58. What is wrong with Mertesacker now?? We all wanted him...
    Speaking of yesterday's match.. Credit to Swansea… they played better than us and they deserved to win. I was surprised by Arteta’s omission from squad… Ramsey was good at the start of the season but he seems to get tired now by 60 mins or so in the game. Arshavin (feels painful just saying the name)... actually I cant understand what has hit Arshavin.. such a good player.. what motivation does he need to again come back to his '4 goals @Anfield' days.. God knows!!!

    Yesterday's result was a bad one.. but it was all down to performance...we couldnt match up the Swans. I hope this result does not mark the beginning of our New Year Syndrome we have developed in recent years. Got to win against United next week... no choice!

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  59. SS, Im sorry to say AA doesnt look like ever getting his mojo back. Im sure we'll see him joining Etoo at Anzi or some such this month. And dont go berating yourselves over losing to the swans. Okay so they are a promoted side, but look at their record this season. Only 1 home loss (to ManU) speaks a lot for their abilities.

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  60. In fact the Swans are one of the few (perhaps the only) side to have managed a draw at Anfield this season. teehee.

    Just been told we have scored the fewest goals in the league so far this season(yup, fewer than blackburn and wigan). How on earth we are still just 5 pts from 4th spot I will never know. Today's rumor mills have KD buying defoe from Spurs. Dont know why, nothing to do with how good or bad JD is, but whats a striker going to do in our 5-5-0 formation that we seem to play in nowadays.

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  61. Just been checking FFL scores..Jose Enrique got the 3 pts for the stoke game??? Who decides these things? He had almost no impact on the game, certainly not more than anyone else on the pitch at the time. Personally I wouldve given it to Kuyt. It takes some skill to miss an almost open goal from 6 yards out with no one challenging you.

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  62. Mertesacker was fine yesterday.

    The penalty was not one.
    Our LB (5th choice btw, since Gibbs, Santos, Vermaelen, Coqelin are all out injured) was mercilessly put to sword by the speedy and creative Dyer and our left winger (AA) was in no position to help the poor sod out.

    Wenger is delusional if he thinks the squad in its current form will finisht he season in top 4.

    The Swans were brilliant and Arsenal did no way near to deserve a victory.

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  63. Wenger is delusional if he thinks the squad in its current form will finisht he season in top 4.

    ---
    thank you for saying that Spit, i thought it was a crime for Arsenal supporters to criticize him,
    and can I just say that it is mostly his fault that the squad is in the state it is, and it will be his fault if Van persie packs his bags, I mean why would any forward play with f***ing Ramsey and Arteta if he could play with Xavi and Iniesta, especially if it might be with a bit more money too, or go play somewhere for 3 times the wages he is at,
    I mean Wenger asks too much sacrifice from the good players, and then blames the dip in performance on them leaving

    --BeeZee

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    Replies
    1. You never know though. Below the top three nobody has shown real consistency this season...except Arsenal when they won 7 or so in a row. I wouldn't be so downhearted just yet.

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  64. I'm all for the concept of a royal yacht, as long as its skippered by Captain Francesco Schettino

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  65. Robin van Persie has revealed that Arsenal want his five-year-old son to enter their youth training ranks as a part of the ongoing attempts to bind Van Persie to the club long term.

    -----

    Bet he has a better finishing than Bendtner....

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  66. Having the cold sucks balls. Didn't see much of the football this weekend I was otherwise engaged with the little virusy pricks. Seen the 2nd half of the Arsenal game though, thought Swansea were really good. The penalty was a freekick to Arsenal but in real time it looks a penalty. The defending for Swansea's 2nd was pretty bad, their 3rd was just a class finish, not much you could do about it. What the fuck has happened to Arshavin? Hes sunken so low in my estimations that, I can't believe I'm gonna say this but hes even worse than Ji Sung Park!

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  67. Arshavin thinks he deserves t oplay centrally where as the manager sticks him out on the wing.

    Cant get many players to perform well if they believe they are being played out of position.

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    1. What position is he now? He used to be a striker didn't he? Then supporting striker in the hole, then attacking midfielder. He'll be your left back next week!

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    2. He's currently left wing. A slow left wing when tracking back, therefore he'd be a shite LB.

      perhaps still better than Ignaisi Miguel who was ripped to shreds by Dyre's pace at Swansea.

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  68. For the price of 1.2 Stewart Downings, Chelsea have signed Eden Hazard.

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  69. Freiburg striker Papiss Demba Cisse is in talks with Newcastle, Press Association Sport understands.
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    Apparently they are in the market for any strikers called Demba.

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  70. Little known fact, Only Mario Gomez (46) has scored more BL goals in the last two years than Papiss Demba Cisse

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  71. A good week in the FFL - finally managed to make some ground on Squadron Leader Spits in the Robbo H2H. He's still ahead, but closed the gap to 3 points. Will probably lose ground next week as my team is down to the bones with Ba, Kompany and Adebayor unavailable. My only hope is that with City playing Spurs and Arsenal playing Utd, it's a low scoring gameweek.

    If the Hazard move goes through then that'll be good news for Torres - a bit more pace and creativity in the Chelsea midfield should help him a bit more. He's showing plenty of quality in these last few games. I think he just needs a good run in the team, and a bit more luck and he'll be away scoring again. Although I'd prefer for Chelsea to struggle and finish below Spurs so that Luka Modric prefers to stay at the Lane.

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  72. the Gooners should loan Arshavin to Bolton, we need a nippy centre back.

    I reckoned he was the best new face in the perm when he first arrived but he's gone steadily more and more disappointing, his passing and finishing qualities have passed and finished. It could be the vodka or it could be that he's out of position, either way, he'd fit right in at the Reebok.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. perm? is this a hairdressing blog?

      Delete
    2. blog? surely you mean Jacks?

      Delete
    3. does Jacks do perms too? I hear Kevin Davies is looking into gettin' a blue rinse.

      Delete
  73. Im sure the hazard deal will come through. They have Joe Cole, why would they need Hazard? No one could possibly be a bigger hazard (in fairness to the poor bastard though, he is having a decent loan spell, as is Aquilani).

    ReplyDelete
  74. Don't do perms.

    Not since Kevin Keegan moved away.

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  75. Bring back the perm! Bring back the perm! Bring back the perm!

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  76. What the fuck were bobby Carlton and Ralph coates thinking? ("no one will notice"?) Rooney got a bald patch on his back. Mullet! Bring back the Mullet, Mariner and co. Balotellis go faster stripe. Higuanas mop. Fats Ronaldos world cup forehead vagina. Various eggshell blondes. Ah I could laugh about footballer haircuts all day long but I'll have to but it short.

    ReplyDelete
  77. or cut it even

    (how to make a bad joke worse (c) )

    ReplyDelete
  78. England back in the Test match after a poor 1st day.

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  79. BBC Sport: Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini will not be banned by the Football Association for waving imaginary red cards.

    If they are imaginary, how do you know they are red?

    ReplyDelete
  80. Anon, given the guy got a yellow, what do you think it was? His credit card? Come to think of it ...


    Jedi

    PS has anyone else had problems loading the comments?

    ReplyDelete
  81. Jedi, yes. Won't load on PC, load just fine on the MAC. It's a takeover!

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  82. MACs must be stopped!! Bring back the Acorn Archimedes! Bring back the Acorn Archimedes! Bring back the Acorn Archimedes!

    ReplyDelete
  83. Being. Ack my bike you thieving bastard

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  84. How Italian is that fucking shipwreck captain ?


    Italian media quote him as telling the judge he had left the ship accidentally after tripping and falling into a rescue craft.

    Classic.

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  85. was his lifeboat the one with the twin Mercury 600HP outboard motors?

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  86. Yes and when he landed he accidentally tripped falling into a bar, and rolled uncontrollably under a spilt bottle of wine before coming to rest finally! in bed with a prostitute. what misfortune!

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  87. Former Arsenal midfielder Aleksandr Hleb admits he wasted his career after leaving the Emirates.

    -----------

    finally, the penny droped for him.

    I wonder what Flamini has won since leaving Arsenal? He must be a permanant in French XI as well.

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  88. England are ready to cap Swansea's on-loan Tottenham defender Steven Caulker - to stop Scotland getting their hands on him.

    ----

    Cap him? like the gangsters do each other?

    ReplyDelete
  89. Good news for Trotts.

    Wolves looked shocking last night,QPR just as bad the night before.That's 2 down.1 to go....

    ReplyDelete
  90. oh yeah? you thought they were bad? just wait 'til you see us this weekend.

    ReplyDelete
  91. I see Pakistan have defeated the world's number one ranked test team.

    Wonder what the odds of that were.

    Worth looking into it?

    ReplyDelete
  92. Oh you said number one ranked lest team.

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  93. eggsactly. did not say number one ranked pest team.

    ReplyDelete
  94. A one-armed piano player may be seen but not if admission is charged to view his performance. - Iowa Law

    Not sure about one-armed female pianists though.

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  95. Man u have a long sighted keeper Bo they chose him over the one armed dwarf

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  96. Neil Warnock tells BBC that "critics poisoned my name" - how fitting that also on the BBC it mentions that coundown allowed an anagram of his name to be used as a winning word.

    Rastafairy

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  97. Blog, latest on the Italian captain is that he was chatting up a blonde when the ship went down. True Italian if so. Mind you, that's from the Daily express, so not very reliable.

    Seems like Colin (sorry - poisoned name) is getting paranoid. Fact is he's good at getting promotion, but can't do anything from there. Like his name: gets it up then wastes it.

    I think what Hleb and Flamini meant to say was that they'd wasted their careers since joining Arsenal.


    Jedi

    ReplyDelete
  98. They never had carrers before joining Arsenal Jedi.

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  99. what the hell do the geordies think they are doing?

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-tyne-16656754

    ReplyDelete
  100. Good luck to everyone's teams this weekend, unless the team name starts with Manchester, in which case I hope you get well and truly spanked.

    Just watching the first season of Boardwalk Empire. I think some guys on here were talking about it a while back. What a great show. Steve Buscemi is one of my favourite actors, plus there's plenty of violence and sex too. What's not to like?

    ReplyDelete
  101. It wasn't for me Noel. I am not a fan of scorsese's work.. it always reminds of of fairy tales... everything is always so clean and colourful.... even the blood.... different strokes for different folks as is said.

    ReplyDelete
  102. Big fan of sopranos and Steve b so tried it did nothing for me

    Watching the wire re run which is good, pity about tough guy mcnultys part time blogging activities

    ReplyDelete
  103. In other show biz news ....

    Jodie marsh has taken over my local pub ....

    ReplyDelete
  104. And hilariously Paul daniels has chopped his fingers off making magic props in his shed

    "....He nevertheless plans to return to his shed next week to construct a guillotine for his act."

    Good luck with that, Paul

    ReplyDelete
  105. RIP etta James, darlo, and Kodak in that order

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  106. Jedi .. the capt of the Costa concordia fits the feckless, womanising coward in a tank with 15 reverse gears stereotype don't he? Tripped into a lifeboat. Fantastic.

    ReplyDelete
  107. I don't want to face my fears. I'm afraid of them.

    - spongebob squarepants

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  108. You'll like this - not a lot. I once met Paul Daniels when he was in the Falklands doing a British forces entertainment show. Complete twat. But Debbie McGhee was a lot fitter in the flesh than on TV. She was dressed in a fur coat with a fox for a scarf.

    Not a live fox. Obviously.

    Yeah, I wouldn't put Boardwalk Empire in the same league as the Sopranos, but it's decent enough for me. I've been crying out for something decent to watch in recent weeks, and I noticed it in Blockbuster so gave it a go. Have to watch Deadwood again soon.

    ReplyDelete
  109. Living in Oblivion is a v funny film noel

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  110. So Debbie what first attracted you to the millionaire Paul daniels?

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  111. I watched Living in Oblivion about 10 years ago blogs. Can't say I remember it fondly, but maybe I just can't remember it. I remember Steve Buscemi in it. Was it a collection of different stories, and he's a director type thing, or am I talking complete shite?

    ReplyDelete
  112. 3 strikers with similar goal scoring rates........

    Torres 50m
    Carrol 35m
    Ngog 4m what a fuckin' bargain. Liverpool would do well to buy him back.

    ReplyDelete
  113. Well I would re-recommend it Blogs and Bo, the second season is distinctly Soprano-esque, wouldnt say its better than the Sopranos or the Wire (which will never be matched imo), but its still pretty good, pretty pretty good.

    so no one is going to say anything about Rooney's dig at Arsenal that we can still win the league...well up yours too Rooney you grannie shagging sarcastic wanker :$@+#....

    --BeeZee

    ReplyDelete
  114. What's with the running track, tone?

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  115. Millers v Vale

    Tough one to choose,who do I curse?

    Draw.

    Blogs,Rotherham's new ground won't be ready until next season,so Millers are at Don Valley Stadium.

    As for quality TV,I've just finished the Alec Guinness series Tinker,Tailor,Soldier,Spy and Smiley's People.

    Don't make 'em like they used to.

    ReplyDelete
  116. Marc Richards who else, scores a penalty. Vale one up

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  117. Stoke draw level. Newcastle being crucified. Ipswich ....well good luck with that one jack, Leeds one if my HATE teams

    ReplyDelete
  118. OK you needed it more so we can both achieve our level of Div 2(4) mediocrity

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  119. 1716: News on on-loan Wolves midfielder Emmanuel Frimpong, who you might remember was stretchered off after being accidentally kicked in the head at Molineux today. The Arsenal man has been taken to hospital with what are described as "serious facial injuries". Fingers crossed he makes a swift recovery.
    ---------

    get well soon Frimmy!

    ReplyDelete
  120. Disagree AH,

    think Bolton played quite well.

    ReplyDelete
  121. excellent. Hope survives. Fortunate to get Liverpool on a flat day but great effort and out of the bottom 3. Well done the Redcar Rock, very solid effort.

    Now to shovel the fuckin' snow.

    ReplyDelete
  122. oxdowne on Twitter: "Looks like the high winds have blown rubbish all over the pitch at the Reebok. But enough about Liverpool..."

    ReplyDelete
  123. up the Vale, play-off spot in sight!

    ReplyDelete
  124. True trott, theres a glimpse on the horizon if viewed through a telescope

    I think bolton will be ok.... blackburn wolves wigan look doomed, unless swansea do a hull

    ReplyDelete
  125. Ah, a bit of peace and quiet, a Guinness, motd on 5 mins pause so I can FF Linekers rotten give -away intros and all's well.

    I know the scores Gary but Ive half forgotten so I don't want a cryptic reminder just before I watch the game, you fucking wingnut

    ReplyDelete
  126. Blackburn will be alright, they've got a great manager. The bottom 12 are in danger. Bolton will be fine, the Yanks are coming (plus we have 17 players due back from injury next Thursday). There'll be bluebirds over the white cliffs of Horwich.

    ReplyDelete
  127. I can't remember what that joke means but I remember laughing when I did

    ReplyDelete
  128. if we remember laughing, it's possibly a better memory than the joke!

    ReplyDelete
  129. so it's the laughter....we will remember....whenever we remember....the way we were!

    Which probably means that we've forgotten everything so let's just laugh about it!

    ReplyDelete
  130. Can't wait for Alzheimers trott, ill spend the last 10 years of my life (literally) pissing myself

    ReplyDelete
  131. just make sure your nurse knows how to log you on here.

    ReplyDelete
  132. I turned 32 last week. Old age is taking it's toll. I've done something to my neck and I can hardly move it now. It's been like this for about 5 days.

    Horrendous day in the FFL. Looks like I'm out of the cup for sure. And with Newcastle shipping 5, Walters missing a penalty, and Adebayor, Kompany and Ba using up my bench spots, I'll be easy picking for my H2H opponents this week.

    ReplyDelete
  133. My necks never been the same since I was on jimll fix it. They say never meet your heroes. I wanted to sing with the wombles. Uncle Bulgaria came into stage tripped over and fell on top of me. The other wombles thought it was a game and tomsk tobermorey and the rest jumped in top of me as well. They buried me in a heap of wombles.

    ReplyDelete
  134. Wanted. Nurse with big tits. Must be internet savvy.

    ReplyDelete
  135. The big tits need to be internet savvy ? Now thats probably asking for a bit much blogs.

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  136. Really disappointed. Not because of the result but because of what Balotelli did to Parker. He should be locked up for that challenge. Stamping on a fellow players head is the epitome of being a cunt. Dirty bastard.

    ReplyDelete
  137. wholeheartedly agree Rod, except that he missed which is good news for Blog as you can bet your last nickel that Parker would have got all the smart nurses with big tits. He should get 6 months for the intent. Cunt indeed.

    ReplyDelete
  138. Would youse stop getting injured!! Fuck me pink!

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  139. a poorer midfield the gunners may not have seen...and is it a home game or what?
    I don't care if we pull of a miracle and beat them in the second half, I support arsenal for their way of playing, dont mind them losing as long they play decent footy and have never minded the recent lack of titles, but its such a drag watching some of these players...

    --BeeZee

    ReplyDelete
  140. That's not why they lost it tho bz, djourou was crap at rb and to blame for the first and the misfiring Russian midget at lb for the second, valencia beat him do easily it was embarrassing but that was wengers stupid mistake for subbing o-c, but hey what do 50,000 arsenal fans know, eh Arsene?

    ReplyDelete
  141. Well that was a disappointment to wake up to this morning. Spurs game first I guess - I was confident of getting something out of the game. We played them at a good time with Yaya away and Kompany suspended, but still didn't get a result. Can't have any complaints about the penalty, as clear a penalty as you'll see. But surely the FA will take retrospective action against Balotelli for the stamp on Parker and the even more obvious flying elbow by Lescott on Kaboul. But of course, by then it'll be too late for Spurs. I have no problem in losing away at City, but, as always seems to be the case when we play Utd, I just wish there were no controversies clouding the result giving us a feeling of being robbed. But anyway, as a Spurs fan, I tend to look down the table instead of up it, and after the weekend's results it's a 5 point gap down to the next placed team Chelsea, with Arsenal losing and Liverpool getting spanked by Trotter's brave lads. Now that the speculation surrounding Cahill has gone, I expect Bolton to play a whole lot better.

    As for Arsenal, I only saw the live text commentary of the game, but even from that it was obvious that AOC was playing well, certainly a lot better than Walcott, and Arsene's decision to take him off in place of a terribly out of form Arshavin kind of got the result it deserved. Once again Utd got through what should have been a tricky fixture without really having to be at their best.

    Still, I somehow managed to get one H2H win in the FFL, and a loss to N'Gog in the other league was lessened by all the teams around me losing also. Out of the cup though.

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  142. Blogs, I hope that big-titted, internet savvy nurse you're after will give you a rabies shot. It's the least you'll need after being on the bottom of a pile of wombles.

    ReplyDelete
  143. Comical defeat at Leeds.

    1-0 up and cruising,keeper catches the ball nearer the half way line than his own area and 3 silly goals later.....

    Everybody hates Leeds.

    ReplyDelete
  144. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-16675568

    Chelsea at it again.

    ReplyDelete
  145. Hey Jack... haven't seen you for a while... you be free friday am around 7.30 your time?

    ReplyDelete
  146. Hey Jack... haven't seen you for a while... you be free friday am around 7.30 your time?

    ReplyDelete
  147. There ya go. Either the comment gets lost or they double it up.

    ReplyDelete
  148. Less said about the game the better. 3 defeats in a row, 8 overall... these are signs of a mid table team. Not good :(

    Whats the fuss about RvP's reaction? I have'nt seen it as well... I am sure he must have been more disappointed and thats all. Surely media is cooking up things again unless RvP also gave some bytes to media or made some gestures on the field.

    ReplyDelete
  149. Great result yesterday for United but yet again United play really well (in the first half) and score very little. They should have been 3 up at half time. I was convinced at half time United had blew because Arsenal would start to come back into it which they did but like United didn't take their chances (RVP missed an open goal - unbelievable). All in all though I think it was a very good performance (1st half excellent, 2nd half professional(aka working hard but not playing too great)) and they deserved their win.

    Can't say the same for city though. Its quite a few games now where City haven't played that well and still got the result. Getting a bit frustrating. My biggest disappointment about the game wasn't the result or even Defoe's last gasp stretch and miss. It was that feckin eejit Balotelli stamping on a fellow professionals head. He shouldn't have got a red card for it, he should have got arrested for it. Hopefully he'll get proper punishment for it, hes a disgrace.

    All in all a pretty good weekend for United, apart from more fucking injuries!!!!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  150. Morning Bo.

    I'll be here on Friday at 7.30

    Morning Bo.

    I'll be here on Friday at 7.30

    Morning Bo etc etc

    ReplyDelete
  151. I saw the Balotelli incident, was it that bad?

    Dont think so.

    ReplyDelete
  152. Eh? Based on what? The fact that he didn't crack his skull open?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No Rod, based on him having his eyes on the correct side of his head and therefore him being unable to see Parker falling behind him.

      You prove the intent and I'll go shoot him...

      (with a dart)

      Delete
    2. Trust me Spit he knew Parker was the ground. He stood on his hand (accidentally) first sure. I understand people are trying not to jump on the "criticise Balotelli" bandwagon but this honestly is the worst incident I've seen for a long time in the Premiership. The intent is indicated by the change of direction and placement of his foot. You don't do what he did naturally or accidentally.

      Delete
  153. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  154. Wenger's biggest mistake yesterday wasnt subbing the Ox for the meerkat but having a shite bench in the first place.

    Think the club board needs to come out and state clearly if there is money available for players or not. If there is money and its Wenger who's not spending it, then we need to look for anohter manager.

    If however they say, they are 'supporting' the manager, then there is nothing any booing will do to change the fact.

    Better turn up as a fan and not boo your own team.

    Dont agree, dont show up. Its a free world, innit?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'd agree with you there Spit. It never helps to boo your own team. It was a strange decision but Wenger is a very successful manager and you have to trust his judgement I guess.

      I'm starting to think Fergie was telling the truth when he said there isn't anyone worthwhile to sign. Barcelona, Real Madrid and Man City have caused price tags to spiral out of control. The day Joleon Lescott was signed for £22 million was the day football went fucked.

      Delete
  155. Dont really care much if Ballotelli is penalised for it or not. Just saying after replays, I cant say it was his intent to injure parker.


    Rod, what exactly is "a long time" for you?

    will it stretch back to last season ?

    coz then it might include Rooney and Ferdinand, knowingly elbowing 'fellow professionals' in the face.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think Rooney intentionally elbowed(i think it was more a forearm) - he made a counter attacking run and his run was blocked and he aggressively lifted his arm to barge McCarthy out of the way. It should have been a red card for dangerous play but it wasn't an attempt by Rooney to injure the Wigan player where as Balotelli intended to injure Parker. There is a world of difference. I don't know the Ferdinand example you're talking of.

      What I mean Spit is when was the last time you seen a player stamp on another players head? Its the worst thing you can do on a football pitch. How some people cannot see the intent I dunno. Its as clear as day.

      Delete
  156. the day here is as dark as age FIFA finds itself.

    its dark, cluody and pissing itself....

    ReplyDelete