Another chap in the mailbox has been keeping notes on comments made by optimistic Man United fans. Plus, Garey Vance is offering a double-or-quits on his new tattoo...
Mignolet's bad kicking is the reason for Liverpool's success, whilst one man keep notes on F365 mails. Plus England excitement, Arteta and a bad Walsall experience...
If you have anything to say on any subject, mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You're Right: It's Brilliant
You know what's brilliant about this season? Liverpool are arguably terrible, except they have Luis Suarez. Everton are decent but they have Lukaku. Southampton are Southampton, and, well, are Southampton. The point I'm haphazardly saying is that the so-called Lesser Teams in the league have fantastic players playing for them. Isn't that brilliant?
Even though you look through the City and maybe Chelsea squads (honestly? United's team, aside from Stan Persie and w. Rooney?) are absolutely brimming with talent, it's absolutely great to see other clubs with "world class" players, not just having them hoovered up by the big sides.
And the league is much closer for it. Isn't that brilliant, too?
The Mighty Thor
Bugger Off Plastic United Fans
A few words to the United fans losing their collective sh*t over the team at the minute, I was a season ticket holder from 1975 right through to 1991, in that period we were treated to such delights as Graham Hogg, Arthur Graham, Ashley Grimes, Ralph Milne, Paddy Roache and numerous others just as crap. I remember coming away from OT after shipping six against Ipswich with my dad being quite pleased it was only six as it looked like it could easily have been double figures, but do you know what? No matter how bloody rubbish we were we still cheered the team on, sang their names and turned up in our thousands knowing full well West Brom with Cunningham and Regis would probably dick us (5-2 by the way) but it didn't matter because United was my team and I supported that team, so if you are getting your knickers in a twist at a few bad results and David Moyes not being up for the job blah de f***ing blah do all real United fans a favour bugger off and buy yourself a shiny new City or Chelsea top and stop preporting to support United.
Paul Murphy, Manchester
...I was going to try and compose a more thoughtful, hopefully stirring mail designed to rally the more disaffected members of our Red Army and hopefully bring them back into the fold and turn our current plight into our own siege mentality that stuck two fingers up to the baying mob now reveling in our current dip in form, but you know what? F*ck 'em. I hope they take their self-indulgent, self-righteous, my club owes me success or I'll spit my dummy out attitude and f*ck right off and 'support' Arsenal, or any other club that's doing the business at the moment. In fact, I hope they go and follow another sport altogether so we don't have to smell the fetid air their turgid views create. For years we have enjoyed a success most fans would give their left bollock to experience just once in their lives, and for the vast majority, their left, their right, their minds, body and soul are nowhere near enough. Never getting near a teenth of what we've enjoyed season upon season while they lord it about, soak it up and take it all for granted. All aboard the gravy train.
Now, 14 games into a transitional season, when support is needed more than ever, they're found wetting themselves, not able to comprehend the fact that, dare I say it, we might not win anything this year and the gravy train's pulled in for a service. Lower than whale s**t the lot of 'em.
Any United fan that thought the next few seasons would be anywhere near the level we've been used to are deluded morons who know nothing about football. Moyes was picked for his character, not his ability to slip right into Fergie's shoes with the minimum of fuss and he should be supported through thick and thin until he becomes not just a man of character, but a man capable of managing what I consider to be the greatest football club on the planet. He won't do this with these feckless fans demanding instant success or we want you out. Where's your loyalty? Where's your pride? Where's your support for the club and the man one of the greatest managers that has ever lived has chosen to continue his work? He's our manager for f*ck's sake and all he asks you for is your patience and support while he gets to grips with a learning curve bigger than you lot have seen ever in your over-privileged lives, and what does he get? A bunch of spineless, spoilt tosspots telling him to f*ck off and not giving him the time of day. They'll accept anyone as long as they keep their gravy train running regardless of its soul.
You are an embarrassment to the club and should be ashamed of yourselves. When you wanted a club to be proud of it gave it to you in spades. Now it's asking for fans to be proud of, you want the manager sacked. Go f*ck yourselves, the lot of you.
Look To History For Patience
Don't often write in but thought I'd offer a tip for the United fans moaning about how terrible the club have become since Moyes took charge.
Get a copy of 'This is the One' by Daniel Taylor. I'm about three quarters of the way through and can't put it down (not literally). The first half of the book delivers a warts and all account of a particularly miserable season (2004-2005) which saw the Glazers take control, Roy and Ruud's controversial exits, defeat to Southend Utd and United's midfield feature such stellar talent as Richardson, Miller, O'Shea and Gibson (and you thought Wednesday night's midfield was bad...) . Unhappy fans called for Fergie's head. Games ended in booing, mass walk-outs and radio phone-ins branding the team and manager a disgrace. 'Experts' lined up to predict who should be sitting in the soon to be vacant hotseat.
You can probably guess what happened next (if not then read the book or go on wikipedia or something). In a nutshell, Utd deposed Chelsea as champions and saw off Mourinho. If the Glazers had listened to the fans and decided that Ferguson was due a taxi to the nearest retirement home we never would have seen Ronaldo blossom into one of the world's greatest, we would never have needed to buy an extra trophy cabinet and we'd probably have gone through numerous managers trying to replace the irreplaceable. Patience and the recognition that good teams aren't built overnight were duly rewarded.
Ferguson, Gill and Charlton decided that Moyes is the man to lead this club forward and for that reason alone he should be given a couple of seasons (at the very least) to show what he is capable of.
Carl Of Manchester
Plotting A Path To Top Four For United
I've just about recovered from the post-Everton malaise that was clouding my opinion of the state of affairs at United. Yes, we should have won that match (in terms of expectations rather than a reflection of the match itself), but given how the respective seasons are going it's not awfully surprising we lost.
But, having said that, all is not lost this season. I knew that we weren't going to win the league this time - it was never going to happen for various reasons; squad needing a freshening-up, the players getting used to Moyes, Moyes getting used to United etc. - but we can still meet the minimum requirements for the season: Champions League qualification, be it outright or through the qualifiers.
In the last three seasons an average of 70 points has been enough to secure this but, given the openness of this season so far, it's probably going to be more like 72+. We're currently on 22 with a maximum of 72 on the table. That means we'll need to win 16 more matches and draw four (52 points) to give ourselves a fighting chance of achieving this.
If Moyes can find a side that can win matches, not even play well - just win, then we've got half a chance. We should be targeting the bottom ten (which we're perilously close to, I'll admit) for 13 of these wins (Hull, West Ham and Villa twice), with similar performances to the one against Arsenal against three more teams in the top half.
We've already dropped points against two of the bottom 10 so it's by no means certain to happen; Villa and Hull have surprised a few of the big teams this year and West Ham always screw us over. Moyes and the players have got a lot of work to do. I'm just really hoping we see our usual post-Christmas turnaround kick in. The festive period is going to be vital though.
Two Big Questions
1. Five weeks ago Manchester United were eight points behind Arsenal and it was widely recognised they could not afford to go 11 points behind. As a consequence they played two of their most effective and important players, Carrick and the Dutch 'guy' with pain-killing injections, aggravating injuries and they have not played since. They are now 12 points behind the team everyone are saying will collapse anyway, so perhaps more importantly, they are losing more ground on the "real title challengers" weekly. So, the victory at home against a flu-ridden Arsenal - was their cup final effort worth it?
2. Liverpool will get a pile of cash for Suarez after they finish 5th (my opinion - they don't have the squad) and he goes. Would you give this money to Brenton Rodgers or trust him to spend it?
TJ II (had to laugh at the guy doing the helicopter at his mum - I seen a mate do the elephant after a gallon of free wine at the reception of a book launch in the Society of Antiquaries)
Leave Moyes Alone
Every other day I read some sort of animosity towards Moyes on f365. Today it's that he 'conceded' he was fortunate to manage United and Everton, like he became aware of his inability to manage a football team in front of the press. There's also the possibility he was being humble, but that wouldn't rack up the hits.
f365 have become as bad as the tabloids, specifically towards United. Maybe the players had something to do with the defeat? Are there not positive moments in the season, Swansea, beating Liverpool in the Carling Cup, Arsenal in the league. Chelsea coming to Old Trafford and Mourinho parks the bus. Januzaj looks promising. Moyes is working with a squad that's not his own, and its a transitional period so inconsistency is expected at a club like United.
We could have been like the Spurs fans and booed at the final whistle against Everton, but we have to support Moyes and the club, he's our manager for the forseeable future and he deserves a chance. At one point everyone thought Fergie wasn't good enough, let's hope Moyes is.
Football Manager Knows...
This fall from lofty heights should come as no surprise to ManU fans, as it has been predicted and documented by the ever-reliable Football Manager series. When Fergie retired in any of my games, if he was not replace by Mourinho, United would slip down to mid table mediocrity. Although I am not sure if it is such a reliable source as Ipswich Town would be title contenders come 2020..so don't blame Moyes, blame United's board for not playing FM.
Duncan Armstrong (RIP Nelson Mandela)
Dear Manchester United Fans...
I know things seem bad at the moment. Fergie is gone, Moyes looks out of his depth and your midfield consists of walking jumping hair, a geriatric and the pie monster. I see in your angry beady eyes the look of toddlers who do not like their new daddy. He's a bad man(ager). Daddy's gone my little friends and he ain't coming back. There's plenty of milk in the fridge. He's just gone, and that's hard I know. Daddy nursed you at his teat, put whiskey on your gum gums and bounced you up and down at the end of the season. It was great I know, but now it's time grow up and be big boys and girls. The end of an era is now my little friends.
Things can go very badly at this point in history, I know I'm a Liverpool fan. Your best players are aging, daddy didn't plan as well as he could have for the future. There isn't much money in the bank either. When was the last time you seriously competed for a player and won...Ashley Young perhaps? The squad needs rebuilding, young players need developing and you need some shrewd acquisitions. But don't worry you have a massive stadium and fanbase around the world, you will rise again. But trust me it could take a while. In the meantime things could get a lot worse, think Graeme Souness at the pool. You need stability now and to build yourselves up again slowly. Moyes is a good man. Give him a chance, lower your expectations, and build for the future.
Finally, welcome to the world of being a real, everyday suffering football fan. You might even find it helps you deal with real life a little bit too. And the good news is you'll have lots more friends to play with soon.
Bonne chance my little buddies.
Do Arsenal Really Need A Striker?
I need your help, F365. I've had a horrible realisation that I'm a blinkered fan, unable to see the glaring problems with my club that non-fans can spot from atop their mounds of sugar daddy coins. There's this mainstream opinion, and I just don't buy it. Is that the curse of the blinkered fan??
The club in question is Arsenal, the opinion is that they need to buy a striker in Jan or they're doomed to fail. Now, my head was firmly buried in my hands when I saw the name Bendtner on the team sheet, so i'm not even entertaining the idea that he's the answer, but there's someone else. Someone who has scored 46 goals in 111 appearances for his country (primarily from the wing). Someone called Lukas Podolski.
If I remember rightly, he's not that bad, right? And for a team that plays a kind of 4-5-1, do we need more than these two, plus a Bendtner/Sonogo back up? I'm not going to whinge if we bring in a player like Falcao, but is it really that imperative for a successful season?
Mark (Drogba for six months though...) AFC
The World Cup: Tabloid Style
Just having a quick think about the World Cup draw and how Brazil 2014 and how it's going to pan out - to make it nice and easy to understand I've explained it all in the style of a tabloid newspaper.
- England face gROOp of death: stars to face ROO-S.A, IVOROO COAST AND BROOZIL in World Cup fix.
- Amazon ROONforest - England ace blasts 99% ROOmidity in Manaus. Actual quote (obviously it's going to be very tough out there but we're prepared for anything)
- AUSTROOLIA: ROO will run scared of us. Before the last-16 match against Australia the England star issues warning to Australia about his form. Actual quote (they're a good side but we're ready for anyone)
- CAMEROONEY. Rooney gets sent off in the QF. ETRO'O scores the final penalty to put them ROO to the semi-final.
A Tribute To Mandela
I'm sure you will be inundated with emails regarding the death of the great man, and matters of football seem mundane at times like these. But I'd just like to pen an email in the mailbox. I'm lucky enough to live in Cape Town and thanks to people like Mandela I have the freedom to associate with whom ever I choose to.
One small part of this association means I can now belong to a football team that contains many different people of diverse cultures and races and competing in a league with other teams of a similar nature, outside of South Africa this is probably considered normal but for many years was forbidden here, for us, the ability to do so is something that we have probably now taken for granted but from now on every time I step onto the pitch I will have to remember it was only possible because of him, he touched every aspect of our lives from the important to seemingly trivial like a football match.
Thank you for everything you have done for us!