Martin Keown solves Chelsea's defensive problems and why Arsenal should fear Napoli tonight...
The Sun conduct an 'experiment' and Adrian Durham knows how to spice up romance...
It's Just Not Cricket
'Many of us have had to accept in recent weeks and months that we are naive in the mores of cricket,' begins Oliver Holt in his Daily Mirror column.
For 'many of us', read 'chief sports writer of a national newspaper who had to write about the cricket this summer but doesn't really know much about cricket so rather than talk about the actual cricket decided to focus on what he perceived to be an act of cheating before realising that cricket people don't really go for that sort of thing unlike in football where outrage rules'.
That's right, Oliver Holt has returned to the Stuart Broad 'debate'. A debate that only became a debate because he began debating it while everyone else was enjoying the cricket.
'We used to wallow in the quaint belief that if a batsman hit the ball to a fielder and he caught it, the batsman was out,' writes Holt.
'How stupid were we.'
Yes, how stupid we were. We were stupid. We also wrote a column heralding the death of sport last week because a bunch of Newcastle youth team players didn't help Peter Beardsley carry the kit bag on to the bus. We are so, so stupid.
Holt continues: 'Not only was Broad perfectly within his rights to bat on, apparently, but anyone who criticised him was an ignorant bully.'
Jesus, we were really hurt by this, weren't we? It really cut us deep. Our precious ego has struggled to recover.
'It seems to boil down to this. You can cheat, but if the umpire isn't sharp enough to spot you, it makes it OK.
'What still puzzles me, though, is why different standards appear to apply to footballers.'
Let Mediawatch stop you there, Oliver. That's because it's a different sport. There are different rules and different interpretations as to what is acceptable. Everyone knows this, but some of us can't let it go because they spent much of the summer being laughed at for failing to grasp such a simple concept.
'After Young's dive against Crystal Palace on Saturday, he was condemned by his own manager, David Moyes,' Holt continues.
'None of the United players responded to Young's theatrics by saying they played hard but fair, either.
'Thankfully. It is a stark contrast to the fierce defence England mounted on Broad's behalf, one which also drew on the idea he was entitled to cheat because everyone else is doing it, too.
'It was just what Broad wanted to hear.
'He is free to carry on urinating over cricket's reputation, a message he interpreted enthusiastically at The Oval.'
Yes, Broad p*ssed on the pitch at The Oval because no-one called him out for refusing to walk. And he's going to keep on p*ssing, he's going to keep p*ssing until we all drown in a p*ssy pool of immoral p*ss. And who'll be there to save us then? No-one. All your loved ones will be dead, condemned to a p*ssy fate. Apart from Craig Bellamy, perhaps the only man who can do no wrong in Holt's eyes. He'll be the Noah of the p*ss apocalypse, warm and dry in his ark while Broad's p*ss rains down on the rest of us.
What On Oeuf?
Writes Matt Barlow in the Daily Mail: 'The last time Jose Mourinho ventured into egg territory, he found out Roman Abramovich was an over-easy kind of guy. Mourinho complained about the eggs and Abramovich told him it was over. Easy.
'Six years and seven managers later, Mourinho is back where it all ended, at the start of a Champions League campaign. This time with no complaints about the quality of his stock.
'"Beautiful, young eggs," clucked the Chelsea manager, quick to embrace the role of Mother Hen and remind everyone that this young team does not yet compare in stature to the one he left behind in 2007.
'"They are eggs that need a mum or, in this case, a dad to take care of them, to keep them warm during the winter, to bring the blanket and work and improve them," added Mourinho.
'"One day the moment will arrive when the weather changes, the sun rises, you break the eggs and the eggs are ready to go for life at the top level."
'The Eggsceptional One smiled, pleased with himself, and his audience chuckled approvingly.'
For once, Mediawatch is speechless.
'Gazza, Charlton and Robson were all from the North East...so, why have Sunderland stopped looking there?' asks the headline on Martin Samuel's Daily Mail column.
Three names over a 50-year period, none of whom played for Sunderland.
Samuel continues to bang the drum over foreign players blocking the paths of English youngsters, and he may have a point about Sunderland's new director of football recruiting 14 players over the summer, only one of which is British.
However, just because the man tasked with improving the first team has gone about his duties by looking abroad (and is it any wonder, after the money Sunderland burned on Connor Wickham?), it doesn't mean that the club are ignoring local players in their development set-up.
As Samuel goes on to admit, 'Sunderland have 17 Under 18 squad members, of whom only five are foreign, including three players from the Republic of Ireland, and the American-born holder of a British passport.
'The news at development level is even better, just three foreign-born players - one Irishman - in a squad of 22.
'Yet it could equally be argued that the new director of football and his chief scout have been rather focused on first-team matters since arriving at the end of the season.'
Well, that's because their jobs are to improve the first team, a first team that survived by just three points last season. Is it really any surprise that they didn't spend the whole summer watching young Johnny Mackem in the Mackem Sunday League?
Neil Ashton cottons on to Chelsea's striker struggles in the Daily Mail as he ponders who is going to lead the line for the Blues this season.
On Samuel Eto'o, Ashton writes: 'Eto'o, who should have headed Ramires' delicious cross into the net at Goodison Park, completes the quartet of struggling strikers.'
One game. He's played one game.
Like A New Signing
Manchester United have been busy writing to fans to defend the club's transfer activity this summer, but Mediawatch is reminded of the old political adage, 'If you're explaining, you're losing'.
'Add to that the fact that Wilfried Zaha is a new signing and that the manager has added the highly-rated young player Adnan Januzaj to the squad and the team does in fact have a different feel to it than the one that finished last season,' scribbled United.
Yes, and Fabio returned from his loan spell at QPR. And don't forget Paul, the new caretaker. Sue! Sue's back from maternity leave.
It all feels so new.
"I don't think we should be too worried about it yet," said Craig Gardner after he was asked about Sunderland's poor start.
"It is too early to be getting into the league table too much.
"The league is tight - one win, and you're back in the top half or whatever. You can't really worry about it too much at the moment."
Back in the top half or whatever? How about 16th, Craig?
"I know some will think I'm mad but I still dream of the Ballon d'Or," says Hatem Ben Arfa.
"But my biggest victory will not be that one, it'll be of becoming a well-rounded man after overcoming so many obstacles."
Judging from the pics of Ben Arfa in pre-season, becoming a well-rounded man shouldn't be a problem.
And yes, Mediawatch is in a bitchy mood.
With Friends Like These
Said Ashley Williams on Jonjo Shelvey's manic Monday evening: "I've made mistakes but not on that stage, on Monday night football with the whole country watching against your old team.
"It doesn't get any worse, does it?"
Quote Of The Day
"It's not just his management skills, there's always something to knock him about. Of course he's a Premier League manager - he's managing in the Premier League." You can't question Craig Gardner's logic when it comes to defending Paolo Di Canio.
Worst Headlines Of The Day
'City's Pell Of A Start' - The Daily Mirror.
'WAYNE 200NEY' - The Daily Mail.
Headline Of The Day
'I didn't bite penis, says Watts' - The Guardian.
Non-Football Story Of The Day
'Anthony Watts has denied he bit an opposition player on the penis in a rugby league game and says he will appeal an eight game ban handed down over the incident.
'The former NRL utility was suspended last week by the Gold Coast Rugby League over claims he bit the penis of a Bilambil player while playing for Tugan on 2 September.
'The incident attracted worldwide notoriety for Watts and even inspired a Taiwanese animation. But the 27-year-old told News Corp Australia on Wednesday he was innocent of the charge.
'"I was wearing a mouthguard and there's no way I bit him on the d*ck," Watts said. "The claim is laughable, but I've still had to live with it. I know I didn't do it and the people close to me know I didn't do it, either.
'"It's pretty sh*thouse to be at the centre of something like this, even though I've been through a lot in my career.' - The Guardian.
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