Moyes is lacking 'charismatic authority', Kieran Gibbs is defended, Chelsea's problems are examined and a dreadful chant attacked. It's a glorious mailbox...
Fear is stopping Moyes dismantling Fergie's team, we are told. Plus, one Arsenal fan digs at Gibbs and mails on Martinez, the Group of Death and a Spurs Christmas list...
If you have anything to say on any subject, mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Is Arsenal's Run Really That Impressive?
I've been looking at the idea now being put about by oh-so-fickle Arsenal fans (it seems Wenger can now stay - for the moment) that they had a storming finish to last season and are now carrying on where they left off, 18 games with blah blah blah. (Mainly because an Arsenal fan works with me and is a right pain in the a***.)
Arsenal's end to last season was in no small measure down to the league schedule, wasn't it? Look who they played, never mind from March, but from February onwards:
Feb: Stoke H (13th), Sunderland A (17th), Villa H (15th)
Mar: Spurs A (5th) (lost), Swansea A (9th), Reading H (19th)
April: WBA A (8th), Norwich H (11th), Everton H (6th) (drew), Fulham A (12th), Man Utd H (1st) (drew),
May: QPR A (20th), Wigan H (18th), Newcastle A (16th)
They faced only three teams who finished in the top six. They played two of those teams at home and drew both matches, and lost the other, away to Spurs.
Of the rest, of the 14 league games played, only two opponents finished in the top half of the table (Swansea and West Brom). So they had a total of five games against top half sides, won none against the top six, and had 9 games against teams in the bottom half.
This season they've started the league almost as easily, with games against Villa H (which they surprisingly lost), then Fulham A (who are rubbish and getting worse), Spurs H (which they won), and Sunderland A (who are a ragbag of foreigners apparently unable to communicate with each other, led by a madman - and I don't mean Don Draper).
Coming up they have another easy run: Stoke H, Swansea A (alright, that might not be a walk in the park), WBA A, Norwich H, Palace A and finally, Liverpool H.
They really should be several points clear at top of the league by the time they meet Liverpool.
But given that series of matches, should Arsenal fans really be as annoyingly smug as they suddenly are, again?
Wilson "Please, somebody shut him up" Beuys
In response to Michael (The clubs have more fans and more money so why do people say the world cup is the top competition give me the Champions league any day ofver the world cup) Piggott, if you're not going to send the best players then let's go the whole hog and just send the homeless team, I'd sooner they got to enjoy it than out of work footballers, and the idea of man marking Ronaldo or Messi with the current cardboard guitar men from around the country appeals if only for when they change shirts at the end.
However, if you don't know why the World Cup appeals more than the Champions League then you are probably a fan of a, ahem, 'Big Club' who only watches 'Proper Football' or some kind of nonsense that you've been force fed by the Premier League and their SKY overlords. Man U fan I suspect, with no recollection of football pre 1992. (Not that all Man U fans are like that I'll caveat). The more I see this kind of nonsense the more I understand why the flags displayed around England matches are normally fans of, ahem, 'Small Clubs' who only watch what I would call 'Football'.
Quick response to Derek Fell too, if you are attempting to begin a new trend where you prevent people using the word 'Hipster' I'm all for it, it's hipsters like you that keep hipsters cool.
Chris ITFC, (Have you heard the new hipster joke? Well I have it on a 7-inch vinyl double A side) Liverpool
Just an observation - the photo of Keysy and Graysy that accompanies today's Mediawatch (which, as ever, was magnificent) it appears Keys has shaved the back of his hands?? I'm sure there was more hair.....lots more actually.
Footballers as Superheroes: Ashley Young reboot = Daredevil - Good touch but apparently blind when crossing.
Matt B, Perth
Yes, But Where Are They Now?
In the previous mailbox, Graham Simons (Gooner, Norf London) couldn't think of a top manager who has returned to his previous club for a second stint and proved successful.
How about a manager that came back to his club when they were 17 points behind the league leaders, yet in the following 4 years won 3 league titles, 4 domestic cups and even reached a European final.
All at a time when the team was so cash strapped he continued as manager without a contract when it expired.
Pretty sure it could be considered a success.
Thank you, Walter Smith.
Graeme (RFC, obviously!), Glasgow
...R.E. Graham Simons, Gooner, Norf London and managers going back to old clubs,
As much as it pains me to say it, self-serving transfer enthusiast H.Redknapp did quite well when he came back to Pompey after managing to get Southampton sent down - he stopped us from being relegated and then won us the F.A. Cup. (spending bucket loads of money he should never have been given, but that's for another time)
Neil Spurr (pompey fan)
...Graham Simons, Gooner, at least two:
Graham Taylor (Watford) second spell promoted to Premier League.
Steve Coppell (Palace) third spell promoted to Premier League.
Joe Kinnear.......watch this space..
...In response to Graham Simons; that Jupp Heynckes fella did okay when he returned to Bayern Munich...
Scof Mann, Manchester
Maureen? Oh Dear
I think I have figured out the missing ingredient to Jose's second spell , he didn't have Claudio Ranieri there to lay the foundations for him!
Cech, Lampard, Makelele, Robben, Lampard, Duff - All signed by Ranieri. Add in Terry coming through the ranks and further fringe players such as Geremi,Johnson,Crespo and Mutu (also signed by Ranieri) , then what did Jose actually have to do?
He was given an open cheque book to garnish a Michelin class prepared meal. Granted he did a good job by getting in Drogba Essien and Carvalho, but lets not forget Kezman, Del Horno or Shaun Wright Philips. All in all , Maureen's transfer record is patchy to say the least. Even at Madrid, he inherited a team that contained Ronaldo, Ramos, Benzema & Casillas.
The collection of No.10s that Roman seemed to be acquiring to tempt Pep is not what Jose will want to work with , nor the type of players he can mould into an unbreakable wall.
Maybe Maureen will be a success at Monaco in 6 months.....
EF, MUFC (Glad we got Moyes)
Juanito, I'll see your Real Betis shirt from 2006 and raise you a Real Betis shirt bought in Lloret de Mar in 1984.
I bought it on the first day of my holiday, wore it almost every day in the bars and clubs of Lloret resulting in almost having my head caved in by Barcelona fans on a regular basis. When I returned home I carried on wearing it until the under-arm mesh (advanced cooling technology in 1984) rotted away due to perspiration over exposure.
What was even funnier was my mate bought a Real Madrid shirt with the number 10 and 'Stielike' on the back. As you can imagine that went down even less well than my Betis shirt. How we got out of that town alive I really don't know!
Darrin Cowen, Manchester.
I have compiled a list of players from the Premiership who I believe no-one can have anything other than warm, fuzzy feelings of love and admiration for, regardless of who they have played for.
Firstly, I cannot think of a candidate for left back, they're either nasty choppers (Stuart Pearce, Nigel Winterburn) or absolute thundertwunts (Patrice Evra, Ashley Cole, William Gallas) - so please help me out with nominations.
Secondly, if anyone does genuinely dislike, even hate, any of these players, let us know and why. What could they have ever done to make you so angry?
GK - Edwin Van Der Saar
LB - ??? (MC - Paul Konchesky)
CB - Dion Dublin
CB - Vincent Kompany
RB - Dan Petrescu
RM - Nolberto Solano
CM - Juan Mata
CM - Juninho
FW - Titi Camara
FW - Gianfranco Zola
LW - David Ginola
Blue Tim (expecting a plethora of hate for David 'Because I'm Worth It' Ginola from the slaphead contingency)