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
Summing It Up
Xabi Alonso quote from 2011: " I can't get into my head that football development would educate tackling as a quality, something to learn, to teach, a characteristic of your play. How can that be a way of seeing the game? I just don't understand football in those terms. Tackling is a [last] resort, and you will need it, but it isn't a quality to aspire to, a definition. It's hard to change because it's so rooted in the English football culture, but I don't understand it."
Jack Wilshere, 2013: "'We have to remember what we are. We are English. We tackle hard, are tough on the pitch and are hard to beat".
Sums it all up really........
Winning With Roy
"You just don't win anything playing the way Hodgson does in 2013." - Tom - MUFC (Cheshire)
Roy Hodgson's England record:
You're right, he clearly hasn't a clue.
SocraticIrony (Its not exciting, but then again neither is tiki-taka) NUFC
What Jack Was Really Saying...
There's room for only one precocious youngster with flair, vision, a sublime left foot being courted by multiple national setups in the country.
Stuart Pearce, you are missed.
It's not what Jack said that makes me think he's a detestable little swine, it's more the little-Englander mentality that seems to be behind his statement that really worries me.
In theory, I actually believe that you should represent your country of birth (or at least those of your close relatives). Not because I see anyone born elsewhere as less racially pure, or because I don't like foreigners (I'm actually one of lefty, pinko types that thinks we should integrate further with Europe), but because the thought of large nations stealing players from smaller ones seems to be against the principle of international competition. We have club sport, whereby teams can select whoever they want, shouldn't international competition be more restrictive than that? Maybe birth isn't the best way to afford this restriction, but residency seems to open up the system to abuse. Now, there are clearly some problem cases whereby a few sports people would be banned from representing the country they feel closest to. Mo Farah is probably the highest profile of these cases and, as a British Somali, is proud to represent his country. I'd hate to lose a genuinely nice bloke and very fine athlete, but perhaps he should be an unfortunate casualty of enforcement of places of birth. I'm sure Somalia would be happy to have a double Olympic champion running for them just as much as we are. I also think of the Polish team that may have been enriched by having Lucas Podolski and Miroslav Kloser amongst their ranks.
But I digress. We've been free of that most detestable of characters for a while now, but Jack seems ready to step into his horrible shoes (better watch your girl, Gibbs). On and off the pitch he seems to be a nasty piece of work. Hopefully I've mis-read his thoughts on the 'England for the English', though rhetoric like that doesn't seem to be anything other than narrow-minded and insular. Even without the uncomfortable undertones of his comments, it's just depressing that one of our brightest hopes still seems to think that heart and tackling are world beating attributes and technical ability is something to sneer at. With an attitude like that, I can see why he'll never play for Spain.
Donnieclarko, AVFC, London
I think we get the point that footballers engage in bloke-ish, golf club style banter that is devoid of any mirth. However, I'm sure every workplace in the land has in-jokes and banter that most outsiders would react to with a blank-face. The fact is someone has asked Phil Jagielka and Jack Wilshere about it and they have responded. If they had answered, "no, we exchange comments based purely on diet, training methods, and the upcoming game", then no doubt you would have castigated them for that.
I've tried thinking of a wisecrack about Jack Wilshere's smoking-gate non-story. The best I could come up with is "yes, all the lads have teased me about my fondness for sucking fags late at night?" Not funny and probably borderline homophobic. So perhaps the challenge to you F365 and other readers is what would you say if asked by a journalist in a press conference, a few days before a high profile international, about the banter in the dressing room?
What Makes A Role Model?
As a Liverpool supporter who has attempted (on occasion) to stand up for Luis Suarez I've always wondered where we draw the line with footballers as footballers and footballers as human beings. For all his sins on the field Suarez seems (and I stress here that I do not know him personally) like a decent family man off it: Married to his childhood sweetheart after following her to Europe and a doting father. In comparison, a player like Ryan Giggs is widely considered a footballing role model (see yoga, career longevity, full chest of hair) but from all accounts of his personal life is a bit of a scumbag (once again I do not know the man).
Is it a bit like art and literature where people tend to judge the subject matter in isolation from the character who produced it (e.g Ted Hughes; Roald Dahl)? Are we solely allowed to judge a player from his behaviour on the pitch? Would like to know the thoughts of my brethren in the mailbox.
The Thought Fox, Cape Town
Quick reply to Conor in Ireland re Jack Wilshere's remarks. I'm pretty sure he just meant that you shouldn't play for England unless you consider yourself English.
Me, I think you shouldn't play for a country because it suits you, you should play because it repesents your identity. Players like Barnes, Eduardo, Vieira etc played for their countries because that's where they grew up and that's what they perceive to be their country. As an Irishman, I'm aware that under Big Jack we played anyone who'd ever heard an Irish joke ( and to great effect - 1/4 finals eh? ), but it's still a valid point of view to have.
I still enjoyed your email though.
Doug - Belfast
Why Poyet Has Taken The Sunderland Job
In reply to Graham Callam, on why would Poyet take the Sunderland job, well, there are 20 mangers jobs in the most popular league in the world, and he has one now. They are a fairly big club too. 2 years ago he was managing in League 1. If they go down he has inbuilt excuses (most of which are around the common theme of having to take over from crazy Di Canio) and if they stay up his star will shine brighter. What was he supposed to do, twiddle his thumbs and hope one of the plum jobs come up?
Oh, also, don't underestimate cash money as a reason.
The Peng, FFC, SW6
In response to Greg Benham, AFC, as a Utd fan I would be absolutely devastated if Chicharito left. He definitely deserves far more playing time than he has been given, and I hope Moyes rectifies this now that his difficult fixture list has eased up a bit.
The boy will get 20 goals a season for us if we play him, and has always done well with whatever he's been given (including consistently outshining Welbeck). He is worth at least £20m, and I personally wouldn't let him go for even £30m because he is so good at what he does (even if it is a bit one dimensional).
However, we wouldn't get that £20m figure because he's had so little playtime that we can't justify it, meaning a club (hopefully not a rival) would likely get a huge bargain from buying him. It would be one of the most obvious bargains of recent times and I expect there would be quite a few clubs in for him.
Saying all this, I am desperate for him to stay; he has been a fantastic impact player for us, and could definitely start a few more games against weaker opposition in my opinion. He won't start ahead of RVP, but his first season where he formed a great partnership with Rooney proved that he can play regularly at the top level. I think he should definitely get a look in when RVP has a dip in form (which it looks like he may be having now).
If we do sell him, please not to another English club. He would score every time he plays against us; of that I have no doubt.
So I was wondering, are F365 journalists paid per word? How else do you explain the superfluous use of the phrase "since returning from suspension for biting Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic" in every article relating to Luis Suarez? The sentences "Suarez has scored 3 goals in 2 games" or "Suarez is forming a deadly strike partnership with Daniel Sturridge" work perfectly well as they are and do not need the extra phrase tagging on the end.
We are all aware of the incident and the suspension. Suarez may have "committed the crime", but he has also "done the time". He is moving on from it, and perhaps it's time the media did too.
Fowler, LFC (No, Not that one)
Most of our news is provided by the Press Association, so direct your future disappointment to them. Ta - MC.
You're New, Aren't You?
"Imagine if the Bloomsbury Group had played football."
Is the Mediawatch compiler a left-wing, upper middle class Guardian reader who has to put down his copy of Naomi Klein or Dostoevsky, depending on the day, to write the kind of self-consciously 'snarky' and 'sneering' 'one liners' you usually expect from the letters page of a student newspaper? Because his or her attempts to come across all eruditely cutting are excruciating in the extreme.
I'm glad this has come up as a topic as I was having a conversation over the weekend about Sunderland's nets in particular. Sunderland's nets annoy the bejeesus out of me. Watch when anyone scores a goal with even the slightest force, the net jumps. It bloody well skips up, like one of those nets you put up in your back garden for your four year old.
This a premier league club, with back garden nets!
Invest in some net clips for pity's sake!
Patrick Dalton, AFC
...Loving the discussion of nets. I know the original email was asking about the differences favoured by various UK grounds, but no discussion of the beauty of a good net should go by without mention of those used in the Mexico 1986 World Cup. It was a tournament with an unusual amount of long range screamers, and boy did they look good screaming into nets big enough to house a small family.
I remember that Subbuteo even released a version which I promptly went out and bought (although a Subbuteo ball rolling into a net isn't quite as spectacular).
On Mediawatch's Penis Beaker
What's wrong with wiping it on the curtains like everyone else?
John Keaney THFC (Exiled in the North)
...No. I have a sock, though...
Scof Mann, Manchester
Seriously chaps a lot of us only get time to read Football365 on our lunch break......
...Did anyone else quickly read the start of Mediawatch's non-football story of the day then wince in wonder at just wtf a 'penis breaker' was and why anyone would own such a sadistic piece of equipment?
Given that I then found the idea of having a 'post-coital dunking beaker' a more outlandish phenomenon it's obvious that Mediawatch has now, over time, desensitised me to all manhood-related violence.
I'm not sure if that's a good or bad thing.
Garey (Aaaaah!!! I said BEAKER!) Vance, MUFC