The Page That Looks Forward To Curtains

Why would the Daily Mail not tell the truth? Why? And is Roberto Martinez really afraid of Jordan Henderson?

Last Updated: 22/11/13 at 13:05

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The Daily Mail told us on Thursday's back page that there was an ominous-sounding 'injury storm' surrounding Jack Wilshere. They also told us that Arsenal were 'angered' and 'stunned' that Wilshere had played a total of 97 minutes across two England games and picked up an ankle injury. That sounded a tad precious to Mediawatch and we were surprised that Arsenal would be so 'angered' and 'stunned'. Surprised but not suspicious because why would the Daily Mail splash this on their back page unless it was true?

And then we read these quotes from Arsene Wenger later on Thursday: "First of all Jack is not injured, that was not the right information. Secondly, I have no problem with the Football Association. They respected completely what they told me and it was for Wilshere to play in one game and be on the bench in the other. They did that very well. So there is no misunderstanding there. They did exactly what we had agreed."

We just don't know who to believe anymore. We live in a f***ed-up world where you can't trust the back page of the Daily Mail.

Stats Interesting
We're forever being told about the in-depth statistical information available to football clubs these days. You may also remember that this was invented by Sam Allardyce. Or something.

Presumbly all this statistical insight is passed on to the players.

Let's hear from Santi Cazorla in the Daily Mail: "Someone brought the newspaper in and showed us that United had 39 per cent of the ball."

Never mind ProZone lads, have you seen what it says in the Daily Mirror?

The Fear Factor
'Never mind Suarez and Sturridge, we fear Henderson just as much,' is the headline in The Sun over a picture of Roberto Martinez. Mediawatch is momentarily confused - why would Martinez fear a man who has failed to score and provided just one assist in 11 Premier League games this season? Perhaps he's just afeared of his strange gait. Let's see exactly what this crazy guy has to say...

"Steven Gerrard can always influence things but I think Henderson is playing his best football since joining Liverpool. He gives them much greater threat in terms of tactical flexibility."

Ah, so he's not acually scared of Henderson at all but was simply making a salient point about Henderson's versatility allowing Liverpool to switch formations - they've played at least three different formations just this season, you see. In the interests of fairness, they really should have made that the headline.

Mark Lawrenson in the latest edition of #LFCWORLD (yes, that is a thing): "Maybe we should have got at least two extra points against Newcastle with them down to 10 men after 40 minutes."

At least? Just how many points were on offer, Lawro?

Double Standards
Brendan Rodgers on Daniel Sturridge in August when he played him against Stoke despite not having a full pre-season: "He's not 100% fit yet, but for me Daniel Sturridge is a player that even if he's 70% or 80% fit, he'll be right up there as one of the top strikers."

Brendan Rodgers on Daniel Sturridge in November when Roy Hodgson played him against Germany despite not being fully fit: "It's not ideal if you haven't trained. When you see Daniel - and I have worked with him for a number of months, I know when he's at his best - that's when he has been training regularly and playing games."

Saints And Wonders
The Southampton hype continues apace with Alan Shearer singing the praises of the Saints' Academy this morning.

"It's refreshing that they are continuing to produce youngsters at an Academy that has worked wonders over the years," Shearer tells the BBC.

Rather than suggest that as a product of said Academy, he might be slightly biased, or point out the many foreign imports across the Saints first-team squad (they spent £36m on three foreign players this summer), how about we look instead at how the Academy is coping in the U-21 competitions this season?

U-21 Premier League - 14th place, played 8, won 3, drawn 1, lost 4.
U-21 Premier League Cup - knocked out by Exeter City U-21 in the first-round proper.

They really have worked wonders.

Dream A Little Dream
Sam Allardyce has said that Ravel Morrison is not wrong to 'dream' about playing for England at the World Cup. Specifically he said: "It's a nice goal for Ravel if he wants to have [the World Cup] at the back of his mind, saying: 'I can get there.' I don't think there is anything wrong with that dream. Without dreams you can't be successful trying to achieve those dreams."

So how are the nation's two leading tabloids reporting this non-story?

From The Sun: 'SAM ALLARDYCE has challenged Ravel Morrison to prove Roy Hodgson wrong and force his way into England's World Cup squad.'

And from The Daily Mirror: 'Sam Allardyce believes Ravel Morrison's goal this season is to rival Jack Wilshere for a place in England's World Cup squad.'

Mediawatch despairs.

The Daily Mail have taken the time to assess all the Premier League's summer signings. Here's Ian Ladyman on Marouane Fellaini: 'Struggled to adapt to intensity of United training and performances have suffered.'

Ah yes, that would be the difference in the intensity of training at Manchester United run by David Moyes against the intensity of training at Everton, run by, erm, David Moyes. It must have been a massive shock to the system.

Worst Plan Ever
'STEVE BRUCE fears Sunderland will recall striker Danny Graham in January in a bid to drag Hull into a relegation scrap,' it says in the Daily Star.

Mediawatch would suggest that allowing Graham (no Premier League goals since January 1) to stay at Hull is actually Sunderland's best chance of dragging the Tigers into a relegation scrap.

Romantic Quote Of The Day
"David was open and honest with a little group of Scottish coaches. I won't forget that weekend" - Malky Mackay.

Headline Of The Day
'FORGET PARIS' - The Daily Mirror. We're suckers for obscure Billy Crystal film references.

Worst Headline Of The Day
'BREN ON A TWINNER' - The Sun. He has two strikers, you see.

Non-Football Story Of The Day
'Bored of the same old vanilla candle? Sick to the back teeth of your lavender-scented living room? Well, you're in luck. Now, your house can smell like Kentucky Fried Chicken - and you don't even need to leave the house to get a family bucket. Behold the Kentucky Fried... Candle. The mouth-watering aroma forms part of a series of scented candles by Kentucky For Kentucky, whose aim is "to engage and inform the world by promoting Kentucky people, places, and products". Talented Kathy Werking created the KFC candle by frying chicken in all-natural soy wax and adding a blend of seasoning, using an "infusion of family secrets"' - Huffington Post.

Thanks to today's Mediawatch spotters Alan Taylor, Terry Hall and Philip Holland. If you see anything that belongs on this page, mail us at

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may well get slated by other United fans for this, but out of the three contenders, I'd far prefer Liverpool to win the title. Yes some elements of their fanbase can be a bit OTT, yes they're our biggest rivals and yes it will make our poor season feel even more like the end of an era (Fergie's gone, Liverpool are back on top). However I just have to applaud Brendan Rodgers and the way he's turned Liverpool around in just a couple of seasons. It...

Please Stop Telling Us What To Think


ooray! We are all excited now, we beat a very mediocre team! With all due respect to WHU supporters, not winning that game shouldn't even be a consideration. This is the problem, there is no winning mentality at the Emirates - we're all congratulating ourselves beating a team that we have a winning record against.

Wenger hails important win


s this meant to be an aspiration for United supporters? Moyes mediocrity strikes again. I see the Bayern boys don't want to sign for him, and his reputation amongst the senior European coaches make other key signings unlikely.

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