Jose Mourinho, December 19: "One of the easiest things in football is to win 1-0."
Tonight Matthew, I Will Write About John Terry
The Daily Mirror's Chief Sports Writer Oliver Holt does not like to chief sports write on the hoof - he likes to turn up to a football match with a pre-determined idea about his subject matter. Thus, last month he wrote a lengthy piece eulogising Frank Lampard after the win over PSG despite little evidence of Lampard's contribution on the actual pitch.
'Lampard was at the heart of everything Chelsea did last night,' Holt began, ignoring that the midfielder had been subbed by the time Demba Ba scored the Blues' crucial second goal and had no hand in the other.
He loves Lampard, you see. Not quite as much as he loves John Terry, but he loves him nevertheless.
As Lampard was cruelly suspended on Wednesday night, Holt decided that it would be Terry who would feel the full force of his adoration. Regardless of what actually happened. Why let that spoil a lovely piece?
From the opening words - 'JOHN TERRY played through pain last night' - we know where we're going. We're going to a place where Terry has battled against 'the hand fate has dealt him in the Champions League'. Because of course it was 'fate' that kneed Alexis Sanchez in the arse and got him suspended for the final two years ago.
But we mostly enjoyed Holt's description of Atletico's opening goal at Stamford Bridge: 'He did his job flawlessly until a minute before half-time when Tiago crossed from the left and Eden Hazard dozed off at the far post. The ball was played back in, it evaded Terry and Ashley Cole...'
That's right. It 'evaded' John Terry. F***ing fate.
One more thing (and we're really struggling not to include the part where Holt describes the defence as 'porous' but absolves Terry of any blame. Oh, it turns out we couldn't resist) before we leave Holt's Terry love-in.
He writes: 'Defensive partner Gary Cahill and Manchester City's Vincent Kompany were selected ahead of him in the PFA team of the year. But as is often the case with Terry, there was a suspicion that vote owed more to his reputation than his footballing ability.'
Oh Oliver, your argument may have held a little more weight in a year when Luis Suarez had not been voted Player Of The Year by footballers who quite clearly do not give a flying love-make about reputation.
Captain, Leader, Legend
Holt was not alone, mind. The Daily Mail described Terry as 'inspirational' while also admitting he will 'replay Atletico's equaliser in his nightmares'.
You do know that he's there to defend, right?
On The Same Bus
Steven Howard on Chelsea in The Sun: 'It wasn't so much a question of parking the bus as sending out a double-decker.'
Chelsea fanboy Rob Beasley on Chelsea in The Sun: 'Who parked the bus? Nobody, not even a minibus.'
You can always rely on Martin Keown for some big-match analysis. And by that we mean that you can always rely on words from Martin Keown to appear in the Daily Mail underneath the words 'BIG MATCH ANALYSIS'.
Today he excels himself by a) questioning Mourinho's use of two full-backs on the right because 'it sends out the wrong message' - he should have been 'more positive from the start', apparently, and then b) suggesting that Chelsea 'were light on the left when Eden Hazard did not track back to help Ashley Cole'.
Give us a steer, Martin. Do you want fewer full-backs on the pitch or more? Or do you just want your money for old rope?
Wonderful work from David Facey at The Sun, who has come up with a list of possible targets for Louis van Gaal at Manchester United. We call this list 'Dutchmen David Facey has heard of'.
Thus, United could 'try to lure Wesley Sneijder', 'test Ajax's resolve over young stars Joel Veltman and Davy Klaasen' and possibly 'urge chief executive Ed Woodward to swoop for' Arjen Robben.
Mediawatch is just amazed that Facey has not suggested 'shock moves' for Dirk Kuyt, Ron Vlaar, Ruud van Nistelrooy, Vincent van Gogh and at least one of the Vengaboys.
What's Love Scot To Do With It?
The Sun's resident Scot Graeme Bryce has long been a cheerleader for Aston Villa's resident (for now) Scot Paul Lambert.
In July Bryce wrote: 'NEVER mind Christian Benteke. If I was Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner I would be drawing up a lucrative new contract for Paul Lambert pronto.'
And in January he wrote a really quite preposterous column claiming that Lambert was doing a better job at Aston Villa than Mauricio Pochettino at Southampton.
You could say he is a fan.
So Mediawatch is not surprised to find that it is Bryce breaking the 'exclusive' news that Lambert wants to sign Javier Hernandez, Joleon Lescott and Lewis Holtby this summer. Where on earth could he have got that information? Who would possibly benefit from releasing an eye-catching but incredibly unlikely list of summer targets for Villa? Targets that will 'excite Villa fans', no less.
If Mediawatch were the cynical type we would think....oh sod it, we are the cynical type...
Rookie Of The Year
The Daily Mail tells us that Roy Hodgson has 'wide-boy worries' that will rule out Andros Townsend, Theo Walcott and Jay Rodriguez. But never fear, 'ready to step up' is James Milner. That's right, 'ready to step up' is a player with more caps than the three missing wide boys put together. Good luck Jimmy, you're in at the deep end, son.
Threat Of The Day
Adam Johnson in The Sun: "It's important to not just have one threat. Now Connor's scoring goals."
Now that, Fernando Torres/Ricky van Wolfswinkel/Andy Carroll is how you put a positive spin on scoring only one goal in 11 Premier League games.
Wednesday's Tired (Oh So Very Tired) Headline Of The Day
'El Clasico Final As Chelsea Bow Out' - Football365.
Headline Of The Day
'WIG WHAMMED' - The Sun. Go on, sing it. With the actions.
Worst Headline Of The Day
'SO SPAINFUL FOR JOSE!' - And indeed for the rest of us, Daily Star.
Non-Football Story of The Day
'Lorena Bobbitt, who made world headlines after chopping off her husband's manhood and throwing it away in a park, has revealed she didn't have any problems getting a date afterwards. Twenty-one years after slicing husband John Wayne's penis off with a kitchen knife Lorena revealed: "Believe it or not, I had quite a few gentlemen that wanted to date me."' - The Daily Mirror.
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