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
After watching Man U yesterday I don't think the United fans should be getting their knickers in a twist. Even without Rooney and Cesc I think they will still stay up
- United should be really very worried that they were unable to impose their midfield on Wigan's in any significant way.
- What's the point of Welbeck? I really, desperately, want to like him, as he seems such a decent person, and he plainly has talent (he was on the bench when United beat Barca in the 2008 semi-final. That's so unbelievably depressing. Remember when we had Fergie, Queiroz, Ronaldo, Tevez, Hargreaves, and slim Anderson and Rooney?), but he's all foreplay and no climax. He never shoots, never makes a "key" pass, never drives at and beats a man, and essentially appears to view his role on the pitch as "run about, and pass ball to van Persie". I hold out hope that he'll confirm my expectations and become United's equivalent of Pedro, but this is the season where he has to either become a creator or a goal-scorer.
- Valencia is an atrophied, sad shadow of his former self. Please follow Mr. Young out of the door.
- Ashley Young (please go away. Preferably yesterday) and Valencia should be thoroughly embarrassed by the form of Januzaj and Zaha. Both show more elan, flair and enthusiasm in five minutes that Young and Valencia have since early 2012.
- Zaha is a very, very, very welcome addition. He may be inconsistent, and have a w*nkerishly hipsterish haircut, but he brings a sense of unpredictability and danger to United that they haven't had since Nani was in good form.
- Cleverley is a prick. I've come to the conclusion that, between his generic footballer haircut, his "media profile", and his lack of any real enduring quality as a player, he's basically Kieran Richardson.
- Anderson has an annoyingly persistent habit of looking suspiciously like an excellent midfielder. Despite being persistently injured, his passing range on his left foot has improved radically.
- If the more neanderthal, "support the club and don't criticise" United fans are wondering what the solution to United's midfield problems are, he was wearing #8 for Sevilla on Friday and has just signed for Cardiff for £11m. Gary Medel would be perfect for United. A genuine defensive midfielder, to protect Carrick, and free Cleverley, Anderson and Kagawa to create.
...So as the reasonably unimportant community shield comes to an end, I'd like to offer up my summary before the start of the season as a Manchester United fan:
- Rafael is still fairly injury prone
- RVP remains the most reliable finisher within the premier league, hell of a player.
- Welbeck is a frustrating player, for every nice looking flick and pass, there's very poor control or mis-hit.
- Zaha looks promising, although far from a complete player. A little too much showboating and lost the ball a bit too much. Despite that, it is refreshing to have a winger willing to take on a few players and actually cross a ball, leading on to my next point...
- It's a shame Jones was moved to RB, it would've for him to get some game time in central defence.
- Evra on the other hand seems to have carried his decent run of form on from last season.
- Giggs is still great and has fantastic passing, although this should be a luxury rather than to be relied upon.
- Valencia has not found his crossing ability from a few seasons ago, hopefully Moyes can sort this out otherwise United have a lack of wingers.
- Apparently pouring a bottle of water down your shorts after a football to the testicles relinquishes the pain. Who knew? Thanks Evra.
- Ferdinand likes woman's sunglasses.
Here's to another great season, thank god football is back!
KF (Hoping to see less Suarez/Bale/Rooney discussions in the mailbox)
Technology Helps The Little Boys
I've just read Johnny Nich's article on GL technology and I completely disagree with so many of the points he raised in his article.
Firstly, can I just say that watching Gareth Southgate make an absolute tit of himself yesterday, by suggesting that "goal line technology won't have that big of an outcome because it will only affect 3 or 4 goals a season", was incredible. How on earth can somebody say that? As my friend pointed out at the time of this ridiculous comment, 3 or 4 goals can make or break a teams season, it can determine if you win the league or it could determine if you are relegated and with how much money is at stake nowadays it can be more costly than ever.
Moving on to the article, I don't really understand the comparison of the guitar to the traditions of football if I'm honest. Technology moves on John I'm afraid, Rugby has already done it and so has Cricket with the DRS (yeah, I know there have been problems). Football is the last of these three global sports that are to implement any technological changes. Football has evolved from the game it was 40-50 years ago and, regardless of your opinion on the games current set-up, in order for the game to progress it must embrace technology and I hope that further technology is adapted such as offside help, which is being trialed in Holland this season. Why? Because it removes the human error aspect from a game and I hate that, no more will we see Roy Carroll fumbling around with a ball that crossed the line, the famous ghost goal from a few seasons ago and the Frank Lampard shot that was a mile over the line against Germany. These moment in football piss me off to the high hills and I would rather it completely fair with the introduction of more technology to help the game progress and become more equal.
Not only does this help everyone, it can also be beneficial for the smaller clubs. When teams like Norwich travel to Old Trafford and the size of the occasion gets to officials they can turn to technology to aid them in their decisions. I could imagine United needing a win to clinch the title and Norwich needing a point to secure safety and a United goal in the 91st minute , which is offside, is given because of both human error or an official not feeling able to make such a momentous decision. The official just gives the goal to United because it's the bigger team and they have home advantage.
These are all feasible possibilities. I know a lot of you will argue this because of traditions and blah blah blah, but in my opinion technology is better for the game. Other sports have adopted it, it is time football does too.
This Would Go Well, Almost Certainly
Liverpool underperformed and did not qualify for the Champions League. Despite having signed a contract to play for the club for an agreed amount of years, Suarez wants the club to sell him and expects the club to understand his position.
Now picture this: Let's say none of this was happening and Suarez was happy to play for Liverpool this season. He scored 20+ goals last season. This season though his goal tally declines to less than 10, whether it be through injuries or poor form. Thus he underperformed, at least in the view of the club. Do you think if Liverpool tried to pay Suarez only half of wages he would understand the club's position? Or would he cry that he has a contract?
Chris, Adelaide, Australia (so sick of this Suarez saga and not even a Liverpool supporter)
It Just Might Work
My initial thoughts of a World Cup being played in winter are "what the hell is going on?" Then I remember that one of the reasons for England's constant under-performance is the fact that we are burnt out after a long, hard league season. So now I'm actually thinking "why not" let's give it a shot, what's the worst that could happen? In the words of Donald "Duck" Dunn from the Blues Brothers "If the sh*t fits, wear it."
Do you see the light?
Idea 1: Television and money determines schedules. For instance, Qatar=Money, and so we will either play in the Summer (and all die) or play in the Winter (and sod our League schedules.)
Idea 2: Everybody important says that what hamstrings England teams is playing all the way through from August to May.
Idea 3: English footballers are, relatively, less skilful than 'all the players in the rest of the World' and because the Premier League is an international in scope, they get relatively little exposure in the first teams of our major Premiership teams.
Idea 4: Fans love their teams, but also naturally have a soft spot for young/English players.
Putting it all together:
Idea 5: Have a short winter break from the Premiership only, which is filled by a full schedule of knock out games in the Carling and FA cups - the matches in which young English players usually earn their spurs. Knock-out games are always exciting and popular, clubs can charge friendly ticket prices for families and satisfy their community obligations, families can afford reasonable prices at a time of year when the bank account is getting a bashing. The top tier of players can rest for 3 weeks or so, say a week before Xmas til a week after NYE, and we all get entertained and see English players develop and make their names. And the first team can go nightclubbing, creating fresh cases for our courts, and tabloid stings for our robust free press!
What say you all?
Top Five Luis Suarez Strategies For Forcing A Transfer
As a Liverpool fan I am torn. Purely from a technical footballing standpoint Suarez is an excellent fit with the Liverpool way. As a human being, he doesn't come close and I knew that from his behaviour in the World Cup- well before we got him. Anyway, to lighten the mood I thought these up...not sure if they compete well with other mailbox entries:
1. Bite John Henry's shoulder and don't let go until he relents.
2. Attend the next Brendan Rodgers press conference incognito and as Brendan walks to the table to answer reporters' questions, walk across him and fall over theatrically as if he's just punched you in the face. Then appeal to the assembled reporters and when they ignore your appeals shake your head in disgust and shout at them with a raised arm for not taking your side and then hope the media storm that follows convinces Liverpool to let you go.
3. Refer to Brendan Rodgers as that little potato eating leprachaun or other more discriminatory phrase about the Irish straight to his face. After insulting him about his background ask him for a transfer and when he says no say "leprechaunsito...por que?" and hope this infuriates him enough to let you go.
4. After doing 3. promise to shake hands and forget all about it at the next game. When the next game comes make a big scene about not shaking the manager's hand and hope in the media storm that follows Liverpool are fed up enough to give in.
5.Portray yourself as a martyr being unfairly crucified in the media and then use these crucifiers to make a public appeal about being a poor slave chained to the evil Liverpudlian plantation who cynically just want to prevent you from ever achieving your true potential. Hope this double whammy of sympathy turns public opinion against both Liverpool and the media thus convincing Real Madrid that you're really a badly misunderstood care bear that just needs love. Real Madrid are so enamoured by this narrative that they come to your rescue.
Mildly amusing or too derivative?
I've concluded today that 5 years is the minimum time period that one can consider long term in football. Having reached this conclusion I've decided to do up some points on the 'new ladder' in the premier league and how things have changed.
Liverpool are the new Villa. There's good money there, but not enough to waste. They might flirt with the top 4 for a time this season but it will inevitably be in vain. More likely to move forward than back, but more likely to stagnate than anything. Going nowhere fast.
Arsenal are the new Liverpool. Undeniably the 4th best team in the league. Strong, grounded manager with a cult following. Hampered by an inability to frequent the markets of those above them, but enough is in place to have a good season and with a bit of luck a very good one.
Stoke are the new Bolton. Have gone through many years in mid table but begin the new season with a new manager and on uncertain ground. Watching them is tantamount to eye torture and poor decision making will precipitate a steep decline.
Sunderland are the new Middlesbrough. Reached for the stars a long time ago , but the owner has long since curbed his investment, part bored by his own efficiency at finish mid table finishes, part damaged by flirtation with relegation and the financial implosion that comes with it. Now just taking up space.
Newcastle are the new Portsmouth. Confusion reigns. As likely to finish 6th as 16th.
And finally...United are the new Arsenal. Financially weaker than their top 3 rivals, relative to their own high standards their prospects look at best uncertain and at work bleak. A few big signings would make a statement to players and fans alike, and avoid the 'Arsenal trap'.
Oh and Spurs...are still Spurs. So close, yet so far... and always good for a laugh.