The dream has to be that the BBC produces mediocre football TV regardless of gender. Women threw themselves under horses for that dream. The boys like the girls...
We thought we would have to resort to another mailbox about maths but we've had some grand opinions about Man United, Newcastle, Tottenham and more. Oh and maths...
If you have anything to say on any subject, mail us at email@example.com
Why Are Only Left Feet Cultured?
Watching the Spurs game last night (great performance from them or shockingly bad Inter performance) and I noticed that Andy Townsend when not almost ejaculating over Gareth Bale mentioned a couple of times his 'cultured left foot'.
Why is it only left feet that are cultured and how exactly are they cultured. Do they actually have an understanding of Nietzsche instead of the lad in Marseille just referencing him and enjoy Bunuel films? I don't get it.
Lee (rambling over, off to watch some Steven Seagal and listen to Motorhead) Tooting
A Little Draconian, Perhaps
I agree with Dave (note to the Bale & Suarez bashers that other players do it as well) Walsh LFC who mailed in this morning about stopping players screaming at the ref every week. I wouldn't suggest booking the players individually as there would be a rash of sending-offs which would spoil the games for the paying supporters and also some refs would bottle it and not issue the cards.
What I would suggest, however, is that the FA make a note of each game when a team's player/s other than the team captain approach the ref after a decision then they write to the club with a warning and after the third incident they deduct the team a point which is suspended until the end of the season. If the team does not do it again then the point is not deducted but if they do then the point is deducted after the last game of the season and if they do it twice more after the suspended point is issued then it goes up to 3 points.
I think this is fair because it would be up to the team whether or not they lose points. After this has cleaned the game up somewhat then we can move on and employ LJ, MUFC to punch divers in the chin with brass knuckles sponsored by Brasso.
Cliff Mallinder, AFC
No. Please not AVB. I suspect he'd be decent enough at the job, but the prospect of trying to nick the best manager Daniel Levy has ever had from him brings me to tears.
It'll be Giggs or Solskjaer anyway.
So Manchester United fans want AVB, the guy at the helm of a team that for a couple of months has relied heavily on luck and long shots (and Arsenals offside trap) to get results. The guy who failed at his only opportunity at a big club. Unless he takes Vertongen and Bale with him (Levy would never let that happen) he would fail miserably.
So actually, yeah, I'm all for that! Seeing United finishing in mid table would give me an almost sexual pleasure!
Luca James Sparks
Stuff That Includes Torres To Spurs
Jack (Take it back to elementary school, na na, boo boo, we hate you to) Manchester. You are one of the many reasons Utd fans are hated by all neutrals. You assume you can just take anyone you like and they will suck your knob to get a chance to be part of the "Biggest team in the world". If as you say, Spurs are challenging for the title in the next few years, why would AVB want to take on one of the hardest jobs in history (taking over from 'ol "shove anyone of my staff out the way cause i'm angry and have a purple nose") when it seems he already has a chance to win things and be a legend to millions of fans for the rest of his life by staying at Spurs? The fact that Fergie will most likely move upstairs, will be even more reason to put off any sane manager as he will always feel undermined and any trophies won will because of the man upstairs. It will be an unthanked job regardless of what he achieves. Wind your neck in you pillock, you are going to be sh*te after he leaves!
While we are on about my team, that was the best team performance I have ever seen Spurs in since I starter supporting us back in 1990. I know Inter aren't what they were a few years back, but everyone of the 11 Spurs players had thier best game ever last nite. The only downside was Defoe's greediness (I know this was mentioned in the mailbox this morning). If we can manage to get at least 2 class strikers in the transfer window who aren't as selfish as Defoe or as crap as Ade, plus keep hold of Bale which I think we will as long as we get CL, then we really might be able to challenge Utd etc in the next couple of years. I actually think we should get Torres as it will be a clean slate for him, no pressure due to price tag, and he will come good again. He was under too much pressure at Chelsea, maybe not the fans but himself. He can't be anyworese than Adebayore any who!
Tough game this Sunday, my GF is a Pool fan so could be fun that evening, i'm just glad that they don't consider us as a main rival so I won't have poo thrown at me whilst I am watching the game in the pub!
Stuart (we beat the scum 2-1) Mackenzie, Jersey C.I
Not A Black & White Issue
It often disturbs me when people like LJ, MUFC take such a black-and-white approach to subjects when this is entirely inappropriate.
You would think that football fans would be aware of how difficult it can be to decide whether something was a dive or a foul. We often debate incidents for days afterwards, despite having slow-motion replays from a myriad of angles. If something isn't black-and-white with so much technology at our disposal, how can anyone arrogantly presume to be sure of what happened in an incident when they themselves were playing, with no replays or impartial referee to help make the decision?
Case in point: I tackled my friend in the penalty box on Monday. I am certain I got the ball. I believe my friend got frustrated at being tackled and decided to deliberately trip himself with my leg, to go down and claim a penalty. On the other hand, my friend does not believe I got the ball fairly, and thinks I tripped him to stop him from scoring. I trust this guy implicitly. As a result, I have no idea whether it should have been a penalty or a dive. I find this is usually the case when it comes to incidents you are personally involved in - its a lot easier for a third party to judge a foul. But, according to LJ, I should have just assumed I was right, and punched my friend in the face. What a civilized and in-no-way-arrogant way to go about life.
Oliver Dziggel, Geneva Switzerland
...Whenever the subject of diving comes up (as per Matt Stanger's article), I always desperately search for the piece I read a few years ago on the 'different types of cheating'.
As has been noted previously, the reason why diving rates so highly on peoples' hate lists is because you're not only trying to win an advantage for your own team, you're doing so by claiming that the opposition has committed a punishable act against you. Rather than say, a hand ball, where you're just trying to get away with something outside of the rules.
That said, there will always be diving until Refs have the balls to bring play back if a player tries to stay on his feet but doesn't gain an advantage, including giving a penalty after a player has taken an off balance shot because he's jumped over an outstretched leg.
This in turn will never happen until Refs are given far more support than they are now.
It always seems to me though that the people who get most upset over the problems of the modern game (whatever they may be) are the very same people who protest the loudest against the introduction of the benefits of modernity to help sort these problems out!
The game has changed, on all levels and until we start to accept that, whether it be in terms of the money, the technology, the profile, the media coverage then football's always going to stuck in this schizophrenic middle ground of being a multi-billion pound entertainment industry trying to run itself along the lines of a Victorian working men's club.
Diving, iffy decisions, balls crossing lines, questionable injury time...I'm not saying you'll ever rule out all elements of randomness from a football game, and the flow of the game should always be respected (etc.), but if the name of the game is to provide this multi-billion pound, global sporting entertainment business based on the premise that it's to decide which elite sporting athletes are better than another, then as little as possible surely needs to be left to chance and fallibilities of one man in the middle?
...and I swear I'm absolutely not referring to Nani's red the other night. A panel of 3 refs could have looked at that on replay, within an allotted time frame (say 30s) and still decided that there was no reason to overturn the original decision (which is how I'm imagining something like that might operate...in the year 2053 perhaps).
Marky B. MUFC
On response to Mark (Walter Gargano was pony), Watford who asks why diving is worse than appealing for a corner, no one I can think of has ever got a red or yellow card as the result of a less than honest corner or throw in appeal. You're welcome.
Matt (LFC to beat Spurs on Sunday, you heard it here first), Reading
Referee-ing the Refs
Haven't written in now for a long time (studying for exams, porn, not getting published) but something that Minty said struck a nerve - "the referee...will surely have Thursday night on his mind" when reffing the Spurs-Pool game. (I now feel like Ace Ventura when he took a really long breath to explain a deduction in great detail in around four seconds flat)
First off - refs don't think like that, I'm absolutely positively 100% sure that they don't, and a case in point is the Nani red (apologies for bringing it up again) or even Bradford's keeper getting sent off in the COC final. The Turkish guy wasn't thinking "Oh I hope everyone watching really enjoys 90 minutes of great football," he was thinking "I am here to apply the rules of the game as they are in the rulebook," something which actually defines the rules of the game would you believe. Whether the rules are "fair" or not is another point, but players are generally aware of these rules (yellow card for taking off your shirt etc.) so there are no excuses for going against said rules. I certainly thought it was harsh that the Bradford keeper got sent off against Swansea but the ref (again) had no choice.
So to make my point, if the ref on Sunday's game sees what he thinks is a dive, he will give a yellow. If he sees a foul, he will give a free kick/penalty. What Minty is describing is part of the football conspiracy theory vicious cycle, that past actions will come back to haunt you. Bale gets caught for diving BECAUSE HE DIVES, not because of his reputation. Same for Suarez and all the others. Quite frankly, if you think that the referee will base opinions on this you would be better served watching the action in the local driving test centre for your kicks. Can we please stop this number of yellow cards/red cards/big decisions against certain clubs rubbish? It doesn't acually exist you know.
Michael, (phew!) Cork
In response to the mailboxer who made the interesting point about 6th best attack and 5th best defence...I'd say the differences between us and the defences that are better are pretty minimal.
i think it mainly comes from having a couple of heavier defeats - Chelsea 2-4 and Arsenal 5-2, and winning a lot of games by a solitary goal. We have won an awful lot of games by 1 goal, which is why our GD is only +16 despite having 16 wins in the Premier League.
So...a boring response to an interesting point. We have been efficient rather than extraordinary.
In reply to thesundayleaguefootballer, I too play sport at the weekend, but I play rugby, and I'm afraid I can't agree with you that someone who does multiple rolls on the floor is definitely faking it. There are instances when people make it obvious that they themselves are rolling to exaggerate the contact, but in many cases this isn't the issue. When I play rugby, there are often times when I am thrown through the air, whether it be my own doing, or being hit by someone else. At full speed, in the air you naturally relax your body to stop any injuries, and as a result your speed causes you to roll over and over. Often you'll hear rugby players saying footballers are soft, but this is not one of those instances.
Kieron Crossley (Still think we have the Ref system sorted though)
I wrote in yesterday claiming I am an avid reader of the mailbox but am entirely frustrated by the absence of any talk about teams outside the 6 most popular clubs. I went to the mailbox this morning to find that it is packed full of talk about Man U and Spurs. Nobody else. Now I know Spurs played a stormer last night, but they weren't the only club to do well and "diving" has been discussed so much I want to dive off a f*cking cliff.
My email was not published, they never are, and contrary to what you may believe I am not a petulant child who throws his toys out of the pram when he doesn't get his way, but I honestly feel I made a highly valid point, made more valid by yet another mailbox that panders to the popular clubs. I attempted to stop the rot by appealing to fans of the other clubs to write in, and feel that, even if you didn't publish my mail, something should be said to encourage others to write in. There is nothing left for it. I wont waste my time reading your website any longer and writing in is like talking to a brick wall. A brick wall covered in Man U graffiti and Liverpool flyers.
I actually checked this out a couple days ago so that's why ive decided to respond to Michiel Jongsma, The Netherlands. Ajax did not go through the 94-95 season "unbeaten, winning all possible prizes". They lost one solitary game that season...in the cup to Feyenoord, after extra time. So close.
The next season they lost 5 games and also lost the Champions League final on penalties. I know last season that Juventus competed only in Serie A and the Coppa Italia, and only lost one game, the final of the cup to Napoli. Wondering is there any team out there that has gone the entire season IN ALL COMPETITONS unbeaten?
Shout Out To The Vase
Can I just give a bit shout out to those teams still competing in the FA Vase this season? My team (Guernsey) play all their away league and cup games in the UK and have had something like 8 away ties in the Vase this season, which is their first in the competition as the team was only formed last year. Leaving aside the hours and hours spent travelling, we play in the quarters against a team from the black country tomorrow (at home at last) and something like 3000 people are expected to attend. Up the Guerns!!
For those of you fed up of watching Bale dive and still crying over Manure getting a dodgy decision (for the first time ever), why not check out some "proper football"
Green Lion, Guernsey (obviously)
A superior splice-driod to George (sufficient use of brackets above) AFC, Wellington, NZ
..The specimen that is Ronaldo, + Messi's left foot and brain.
Alex, THFC Manchester (It's Friday here too George..)