But it must only be used for a shot seemingly launched from a catapult with reckless abandon. We also have mails on Dimi Berbatov, Cesc Fabregas and lots more...
That's the question posed in a wide and varied Mailbox, along with several others including Lloris dropping bollocks, Stewie Griffin's return & a thank you to David Healy...
If you have anything to say on any subject, mail us at email@example.com
Question For United Fans
A question I've always wanted to ask United fans. If at the end of the season, you finish fourth, never having finished lower than third in the Premier League, how will you react? I'm not trying to be smart, I'm serious, I want to know. Anyone who can imagine that it's next summer, for whatever purposes the squad is the exact same, but you're coming off a fourth-place finish, I'd love to hear. Of course rational Utd fans are welcome to answer.
David (I imagine a RABBLE RABBLE RABBLE situation), Ireland
Rooney Worth At Least £40m
Can someone please explain to me where this £25m valuation of Rooney has come from?
In a window where Cavani has gone for over £50m and Suarez and Higuain are being valued at £40 and £35m respectively how has Rooney been dealt such a low figure? This to me seems to be more likely that one tabloid has plucked a price from thin air and everyone else has followed suit.
I'm not going to list Rooney's qualities as that topic has been covered pretty well since last February, but while a year or two older than the others mentioned he is still only 27 and if Utd do keep him they will arguably have him at his absolute prime. People tend to get so caught up in 'sell-on value"'(the new buzz word for transfer know-it-alls) that they forget that at top level football having the best players is more important than potential market value.
With the ball firmly in Utds court, if Arsenal could get £24m for Van Persie with one year left on his contract why would Utd sell one of there best players for the same amount with and extra year left on his?
Rooney is worth at least £40 million in mainland Europe, more if Chelsea want to buy him.
Not To This Chelsea Fan
Surely I can't be the only Chelsea fan a little bit worried about the possibility of us signing Rooney. I seem to remember a couple of years ago Chelsea paying big money (50 million in case anyone has forgotten) for a player who wanted away from his club. At the time Torres was not miles away from what Rooney is today. He had not performed to his peak in a couple of seasons and there were doubts about his fitness.
For some reason this just smacks of déjà vu. Yes, he could change his attitude lose weight and be a brilliant signing but it just seems Chelsea have learnt nothing from the Torres deal. We have a brilliant young striker at the club already in Lukaku why risk another 30 odd million on a player who might cause trouble.
Andy (This weather has gone to people's heads) CFC Ireland
Sell Rooney, Buy A Midfield
Michael N. W. Baigel, stick Rooney in midfield? No. Simple as that, despite looking like he would be a very good central midfielder when he actually was played there he was for the most part, utter pants. Rooney is best playing between the lines or up front he is not a midfielder despite the fact he runs 50 yards to make a tackle.
The only other thing I've got to say on this whole saga (is it a saga yet? I'll run with it anyway!) is this, if Rooney doesn't want to be at the club sell him, no point keeping a player who doesn't want to play for you. The fact he has kept silent or hasn't publically distanced himself from the quotes attributed to him would point to the fact that he agrees with them. It's also the second time he has behaved like this and as much as I would like him to stay that type of behaviour can't be allowed to stand. I'd much rather the club got him off the books ASAP and concentrated on bringing in some much needed midfield talent.
Just Buy Fellaini
To quote Wayne Rooney, "I'm angry and confused," but not too much over his protracted deal but more to do with the midfield conundrum that has been lurking around Old Trafford for quite a bit now. Firstly that bid for Cesc looked like Moyes may have still been a little light-headed from rising so fast in the game but I'm prepared to chalk that one off to inexperience. Before that I didn't think Thiago was going to be the saviour either, although he is probably quite a good player (one good u-20 odd tournament is not always the making of a world beater, ask Ryan Babel currently tearing it up for Kasýmpaþ) Barca's midfield operates differently to United's. There they operate in passing triangles to retain possession, and apart from maybe Carrick, we don't possess anyone who could form these intricate pieces of play with Thiago consistently over 90 mins.
But United's biggest failing in the big matches has been being outmuscled in midfield, Mourinho's first Chelsea, City and Yaya, Dembele did it twice at the start of last season. Since Keane we have had no one really prepared to hit back without fear of injuring themselves doing it (see Hargreaves and Jones) and this is definitely where we need to recruit.
Strootman was a possibility that was thrown about although admittedly I have seen little of his play but he has moved on to Roma now so I guess it doesn't matter (does that mean De Rossi is edging any nearer the door?). And that leaves (or the only other midfielder that the gossip columns know about) one Marouane Fellaini. This is a fellah who d*cked over United last season, who had been linked with us as well as Chelsea and Arsenal and looks to be a great prospect for the future. But now because he plays for the same club that our new manager formerly managed the majority of United fans are turning their noses. And this is what is making me, "angry and confused". If your manager has a link to a player and can get him easier than others then use it. Look at Thiago and Pep, how many Bayern fans are worried that Pep is going back to his old club (I know there's a slight difference between Barca and Everton but a good young player is a good young player). Instead we have all this snobbery about a marquee signing and abject despair when missing out on other young players while Fellaini twiddles his thumbs. Put it this way if Fergie had signed him back in January, the keyboard warriors would be billing Fellaini as the next coming of Christ or at least the next Keane (used to be considered the same thing but my God what a bitter did he turn out to be after he hung up the boots).
So in short, Moyes pull the finger out and sign that big man with the fro you know so well who can give us a bit of presence and allow us to play Jones in the back line. If you want to sign another tiki taka/creative midfielder after that by all means go ahead but first sign the ball winner we need who will allow those other players to play.
Chev (Sorry about the amount of brackets)
Mourinho Messing With Moyes' Mind?
Now that Moyes is in with the big boys, has it not occurred to anyone Mourinho is simply playing mind games? Unsettling Utd's star player and making his rival's job even more difficult before a ball is kicked. He's got Moyes on the back foot already.
Kudos Jose. Kudos.
Why Jose May Hate Mata
Good article on Jose's idea of Mata. I can't believe a manager of Jose's success on paper would contemplate Rooney over Mata. But I know Jose, as we've had him - and it kind of makes sense. For me, Jose hates flair. I personally think he's jealous of players that have these abilities they he never had as he was a modest player at best. He coached the flair out of Joe Cole and publicly hung him out to dry a couple times (Joe rates him, but let's be honest, he's not a mensa member and is just chuffed he got medals) and Mata is of the same ilk. Jose's never developed players in the way he has inherited or bought others. His favourite midfielder is Lampard who's never done a stepover in his life. He likes a direct play, with players doing exactly what he wants, nothing creative that he didn't design himself. Ronaldo is an exception. And Rooney, with his horrible first touch, and fitness issues makes you wonder if Jose is still in awe of the player he watched in his home nation in '04. He ain't that player anymore. Petty, but I don't want a mercenary who holds clubs to ransom and kissed the ManU badge (on his boyhood club's turf) at Chelsea. The only area of London that will be happy with Rooney's arrival is Soho.
Keeping Calm About Arsenal
Recent mailboxes have been very whiney haven't they? Consisting mainly of fans of Man United, and my beloved Arsenal, bemoaning the lack of transfer activity. Anyone would think that being the highest earning revenue earners in England, having the two biggest stadia to continue that trend, and mindboggling commercial deals with random companies in Africa and Asia, are far worse scenarios than what Coventry fans are going through, but then I digress.
I refer to Graham Simons of North London mailbox entry, and make the point to him that I am a Red Member, and am 25,000 in the queue for a season ticket at the Emirates. 25,000!! That's more people than can get in to most grounds in the country, ahead of me in the queue. There are at least 15,000 behind me in this same queue; somehow I don't think Arsenal will be struggling to fill this exodus of fanhood that you refer to in your mail any time soon.
Now, don't get me wrong, I am growing more concerned by the week about our lack of signings. To my mind, it seems to reflect years of having no buying policy in place for 'major stars', simply because they couldn't afford to shop in that market - the deals that we get over the line are for 'second tier' footballers, very good, but not world-class types. That's no excuse incidentally, I wish the club had been far more proactive in the way it did its business in previous years, the five signings in three days after being thrashed at Old Trafford being a shining example of how not to do things.
But, then again, this summer it is obviously not for the lack of trying. Higuain is seemingly a toy for Real Madrid's president to kick around to make a point, and well, we've offered more than twice our transfer record for a world class, and admittedly batsh*t mental, striker in Suarez. I wouldn't call that dithering, I'd call that negotiating. Personally, £35m seems a fair price, but then, we are negotiating with a club that thought Andy Carroll was worth that exact amount.
Whilst I'm not advocating that Arsenal are doing things particularly well again this summer, I think it's more than a little harsh that 'Gooners don't believe Gazidis or Wenger'. I wholeheartedly agree that we need two or three big signings, but I for one, am prepared to look past the bulls**t that mostly comes from newspapers just guessing their way through July, and see where we are in September when the window shuts. Only then can it possibly be fair to judge.
Tom (Neither an AKB or whatever the other acronym is), Kent
...Having just read Matt Stanger's article on Arsenal I feel the need to defend them. A lot of people seem to agree with Matt and Graham Simmons from this morning's mailbox but I would ask that given the circumstances, what exactly are Arsenal supposed to have done?
First of all lets address Graham's comment that 'fans aren't buying the bulls**t anymore'. What bulls**t? This is the first summer in nearly 10 years that Arsenal have been able to compete for the top players for reasons that are extremely well documented (building a 60,000 seater stadium). Arsene and Ivan Gazidis have both stated that this season is different to the last eight so there has been no previous bulls**t, Arsenal simply couldn't compete financially with City, Chelsea and Utd. Most fans were aware of this fact and are delighted that we are still in the hunt at the top of the league despite eight years of selling our best players and being unable to sign world-class replacements. I'm not entirely sure what Graham is referring to here.
Anyway on to this season. Arsenal clearly need a top quality forward. I'm sorry to break it to you but there really aren't too many of those around. Suarez, Rooney and Higuain are the only ones available for transfer that you would feel confident of instantly improving the team and anyone that believes signing Wayne Rooney or Luis Suarez is a job that can be wrapped up in a couple of weeks needs their head examined. If you weren't aware guys, Arsenal have made an official bid for one of them already, you can't do much more than that at this stage. Higuain is a slightly different case. It looked at one point like we had wrapped that one up but if you had seemingly agreed a £23 million pound fee and had then been asked to add an extra £12 mill on top at the last minute, I'm not sure you would pay up without a bit of a fight either. Arsenal may now have some money but they're not idiots.
Basically we need players that will turn us into champions. If those players aren't available or can't be convinced to come then there is no point spending the money on other players just for the sake of it in order to make fans happy and stop people writing negative articles. If they sign nobody then they will still finish in the top four as they do every single year. It is pointless going out and spunking 30/40 million on a few footballers that take them from fourth to third, or quite plausibly fourth to fourth. It is far better to hold tight until next summer or later on in this transfer window when some more quality might be available. Arsenal need the best and they are clearly working on signing and bidding for the best. Please just give them a bloody chance to bring in some excellent footballers and stop writing stupid articles about how they have not done any business yet, less than three weeks into the transfer window.
Tom (drives me nutts) Goldenballs
No Way Bale Is Going Anywhere
Firstly, let's not kid ourselves. There is literally no one in world football with whom we could replace Bale - unless of course Real fancied selling us Cristiano Ronaldo, but I don't think that's too likely. Even buying two or three players would make us weaker. For this reason I fully expect him to be in a Spurs shirt come September.
Levy will know that he will still be worth the same money next year, potentially more depending on how many he scores. This means it doesn't make financial sense, however much we're offered. AVB has said that Levy has promised he won't be sold. After turning down PSG, it would be pretty insulting to then have this promise broken. Bale gives us profile just by being there - see comments from Paulinho - and will make us attractive to potential signings.
Essentially we have everything to lose and nothing to gain. I think last season was pretty much the final stage of Bale's development. I don't think he'll play centrally (I hope he plays on the right so he can pepper shots from that ridiculous left foot) but I think the experience of last season has made him a complete player and I expect near 30 goals next year. If he does then we'll be near the top come June, if he goes then we most certainly won't, no matter who we could buy with the money. I think Levy is clever enough to realise this, and I am willing to bet he's not going anywhere. So don't get too excited, Utd fans.
Alex G, THFC (plus EA Sports would be pretty annoyed)
New High/Low For Mediawatch
Smashed testicles? I now have the 'ache'...cheers Mediawatch.
...Due to my involuntary wincing I am now aware that having smashed testicles is far worse than a completely cut-off penis.
You know what they say, learn something new every day and you live longer...if a little more fearful
Steve (I'm not sure they have come back out yet) Lahndahn
...Just when I thought it couldn't get worse than penis severing, Mediawatch introduces 'testicle smashing'.
Please make it stop.
Andy B, RFC
Strange Football Memorabilia
On a childhood trip to Spain I found myself staying in the same hotel as both Chris Armstrong (first Premiership footballer to test positive for cannabis) and Trevor Sinclair.
I gingerly approached them both at the pool to ask for an autograph, with only the book I was reading at the time in my hands. The two boys kindly agreed to sign my book, which has left me to this day with a signed copy of Roald Dahl's 'The Giraffe, the Pelly, and Me'.
This lead me to wonder, what is the strangest piece of football memorabilia mailboxers can lay claim to?
Conor (average players, average book) LFC
F365 Mailers More Sensible Than Journos
Ted from Manchester points out exactly all that is wrong with sports journalism. Mediawatch is great at showing the vagaries of some of the worst offenders, but even the best of them - the award winning ones - rely on conjecture, anecdotes and, well, making it all up when necessary.
Not sure why it is okay for a reporter to completely misconstrue or fabricate a story in sports while elsewhere sources must be cited. Sure, sports journalism isn't going to affect major topics like politics, etc, but shouldn't there be some code of conduct or baseline of quality?
The reality is that there are more considered articles in the mail section of F365 than most of the rags (and they wonder why people are buying less of them).
So a big thank you to those fellow F365 readers and contributors for keeping me sane.