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£75m for a 28 year old with no sell on value, to become the third most expensive signing ever.
What is this world coming to?
Danny (Bracket with [brackets])
Why do we care about the cost of a Pogba?
I don’t get one thing in the ongoing Pogba transfer saga – why are the fans bothered about the cost of the transfer. Everybody agrees that the player will definitely enhance the quality of the team and will be a regular starter (on talent, not reputation la Rooney). By their own admission most fans do not like the owners. Only a minuscule are shareholders or probably none. Buying Pogba is not going to make a difference to the cost of tickets – I guess that has been pretty much fixed for the coming season. And the club can definitely take on such a massive buy without collapsing (some have mentioned Leeds but definitely such fears have no basis – just look at the money rankings). I am really confounded by all the fan views. Would love to be enlightened. And won’t reveal club allegiance as I feel it will result in some distorted replies.
Hari (Madras, India)
He is not overrated
Noticed a word, or rather a term, that keeps cropping up in the mailbox since the whole Pogba borefest started, he’s ‘over rated’.
There’s been some great opinions and views on the £100m and if he’s worth it etc. Yes its an obscene amount of money for us simpletons to comprehend but there’s billions of pounds in football at the moment, shirt deals and TV deals and what have you, so that has to be taken into account. Anyway thats another discussion
The popular opinion seems to be that Pogba has not done enough to be classed in that bracket of the best performers at the moment, i.e. Messi, Ronaldo, Bale, Suarez, Neymar, Iniesta, Grigg etc etc, and personally I’d agree with that. I admittedly don’t watch EVERY Juve game but the big main ones I’ve seen, he does some great things, touches, skills etc, but then kinda goes missing and at the end of the 90 minutes you’re left thinking ‘he didn’t really impact that game then’.
However, I don’t think he’s ‘over rated’. For me, over rated is when someone has been touted as a better than ordinary prospect, but has been around long round enough for us all to realise that he’s just not gonna progress. Rooney is vastly over rated. He’s 30, was quite good (no more) when he was about 23 but hasn’t pushed on and has now luckily found his ‘ticking over midfielder role’. Walcott is another, you’re waiting for him to get to that next level, but then the time comes where you go, nah he’s not gonna do it. You only have to look at Ronaldo and Bale who have massively usurped them 2 even though they were kinda their understudies so to speak. Theres LOADS more. (mainly all english)
Pogba is stil what, 23?? Hasnt ‘been anywhere other than Juve. He didnt really get going at Utd so you can’t count that. He’s got huge potential, surely everyone can see that. He’s obviously done something at Juve that has got him noticed to this extent. There’s other good players at Juve who are not being touted for £100m. Judge him in 3 years, see how he progresses. Is he worth £100m, who knows, but its still too early at present to say he’s over rated.
Any Utd fan saying they’d rather have Matuidi, or James / Pastore / Hamsik are probably the same ones who said they didnt want Jose. Maniacs. Pogba is the kind of signing you NEED boys.
An over rated XI would be a great project, but I’m at work. Get on it.
Wigan Dave (Will Grigg is criminally under rated)
This whole ‘Pogba is overrated’ argument is complete tosh. It really is. Do people even watch him play on a regular basis?
He is a match winner. To compare him to other past United players he’s in the mould of Best, Cantona, Ronaldo etc. in that he can go wandering for most of the match and not seem all that involved and then out of nowhere do something within 5-10 seconds that changes the game. He isn’t a metronomic midfielder thats going to get through 400 passes a match and dictate the tempo from the middle.
For France at the Euro’s he was mainly played at the base of a 4-2-3-1 and given defensive responsibilities without much license to go forward which isn’t his game and it’s slightly unfair to judge him based on those performances.
He is Yaya Toure at his best, sometimes went missing and quite often had his defensive capabilities questioned yet you still wanted him to be on the pitch because he very often won the game in a single piece of brilliance. United currently have very few genuine match winners so Pogba is pretty much priceless.
£100m is outrageous but money in football really means nothing these days, these fantastic numbers that are assigned to transfer stories really don’t mean anything any more.
You look at £100m for Pogba who has won 4 x Serie A, 2 x Coppa Itallia, 2 x Supercoppa, Champions League finalist, Euro 2016 finalist, won the U-20 world cup and won both Golden Boy and Golden Boot awards all by the age of 23, and then you compare that to the £42m City are prepared to pay for Leroy Sane who has no personal honours and has only played 50 senior games in his entire career and you realise that transfer fees mean absolutely nothing.
People saying “He isn’t Messi, or Bale, or Neymar” are completely correct and whilst it would be incredible to be realistically capable of signing those 3 do you honestly think they’d be cheaper than £100m if still under long contract?
We’ve tried Fellaini, Schweinsteiger, Schneiderlin, Herrera, Carrick, Park, Anderson, Gibson, Fletcher, Cleverley even Phil Jones. For christ sake we played matches with the Da Silva twins in midfield. It’s about damn time we had an elite midfielder and bollocks to the price.
Ben (Juve paid £76m for a 28 yr old) Gleeson. Cardiff
Zlatan has won 11 consecutive league titles. Starting with the Eredivisie in 2002 and 2004, he then went on to win the Serie A title with Juventus in ’05 and ’06, but both were revoked due to the Calciopoli scandal. He then moved to Inter Milan where he won the serie A three years in a row, from ’06 to ’09. Zlatan then moved to Barcelona where he won the La Liga in 2010. In 2011, Zlatan returned to Italy and promptly won the Serie A title with Milan in 2011. From 2012 to 2016, Zlatan has won 5 straight Ligue 1 titles with PSG. Notice that Zlatan has always won a championship during his first season with a new club. Here’s hoping that that winning streak continues with a 12th straight title at the home of the Greatest football team on the face of the planet. If ever there was a talisman in football, Zlatan’s your man.
Keg Baridi (Zlatan will be god of Manchester) Nairobi, Kenya
PS-Those two revoked Serie A title makes Juventus UNFASHIONABLE.
A blank Rooney canvas
Rooney. Has there ever been a more divisive player in football? Puts even Ronaldo in the shade along with Sturridge and Giroud (#bantz).
On the one side there’s f365 writers and a bunch of armchair experts who say he’s slow, bad first touch, past it etc and on the side of the correct there’s a collection of actual decorated and successful managers and some other knowledgeable fans (nod to Harry B) who say he’s still got it but has been unfairly tarnished by (and blamed for) bad sides and being played out of position (whilst also having occasional bad games like any player does).
Over the last year I’ve earnestly tried to understand the views of the other side, partly so I can try to turn them around but also maybe revise my own position if I’m missing something. Thing is, I still know I’m not wrong.
Master Alves in the comments made a good point that both sides have become intractable. Indeed it hardly seems to matter what Rooney actually does. Case in point, his run of performances from new year up to injury, then after injury, then at the Euros where aside from one awful half he was one of our best performers. These games are seemingly forgotten even though it’s basically the last half a year.
So I have a plea, for the sake of the mailbox collective and my own sanity… lets change the man in the mirror and let’s start the season with a blank slate on him. He has a new manager and seems destined to be in his actual natural position for the first time in ages. If he’s crap, then fair enough. And if he’s good, then accept it.
Is that fair enough? It could be fun, a refreshing positive experience for a change! Certainly won’t be worse than now. Silvio, you just carry on or the world may stop spinning.
Has anyone had a better summer than Juve?
What a summer this could turn out to be for Juve, regardless of if they keep Pogba or not.
I know everyone is expecting him gone following the Higuain deal, but Pogba still has a say in the matter.
Nevertheless, what a summer Juve have had so far! Higuain is a massive upgrade on Morata (and should be at the price), whilst the only other notable loss from last season is Cuardrado. Coming in however, Pjanic is one of the best players in Serie A, and their already solid defence has been strengthened further with abs aria (loan) and Alves (free). Add in Pjaca, and it’s arguable that every position is stronger than the start of the summer (not seen enough to say for sure).
They have no doubt got the best strike force, midfield, and defence in the league, with Buffon proving he’s no slouch at his age either. Pogba’s sale would largely break the window even for Juve, and would make for an excellent summer, but at this point, why not hold on to him and challenge for the Champions League?
The squad is as good as any, and man for man matches Real, Atletico & PSG, and even a sort of back to front Barca, with world class defenders and very very good attackers.
If Juve hold on they could truly make a one team league for themselves, and become the Bayern of Italy, back to winning champions leagues again.
KC (and a loan system to make Chelsea jealous!)
Prospects for the new season
Following on from Jon, Jo’burg’s email yesterday, here’s my thoughts on ‘big club’ prospects for the new season; remarkably, Spurs are the only team in this list who can’t boast a manager with a major league title to his name.
Leicester – impossible to predict. As likely to finish 10th as make top four. While they’ve done very well to largely keep the title-winning side together, was Kante the glue that kept them together? But after last season, really, who the hell knows?
Chelsea – impossible to predict. Conte could relight the fire after the sh*tstorm of last year, but he could find the Premier League difficult to adapt to and Major question marks remain over the form of several ‘star’ players despite significant improvements in the latter part of last season (they couldn’t have got any worse though).
Liverpool – impossible to predict. In their usual transition state, probably too many ‘ifs’ to seriously challenge; if Klopp can keep turning 7/10 players into 9/10 players… if Coutinho can find genuine consistency… if Sturridge can stay fit… if Mane beds in well… if Can continues his development…
Man City – impossible to predict. Need to improve significantly after ending up well off the pace last year but relatively quiet summer means a challenging year ahead despite new boss’s credentials. That said, they’ll probably go and sign someone massive now.
Man Utd – impossible to predict. Do we get the impotent Man Utd and Mourinho of last year, or will there be a mutual aphrodisiac effect restoring former glories? If Pogba comes, and proves to be worth the money, they’ll surely go close. But it may not be enough if Rooney becomes the biggest drag act since Dame Edna.
Spurs – impossible to predict. Looked fantastically un-Spurs-like last season, until they out-Spursed themselves and fleebled pathetically away at the end. How Spurs-y will they be? Can Pochettino really improve them again, and stop them from being Spurs?
Arsenal – eat, sleep, fourth, repeat. eat, sleep, fourth, repeat. eat, sleep, fourth, repeat. eat, sleep, fourth, repeat. eat, sleep, fourth, repeat. eat, sleep, fourth, repeat.
Jura (left West Ham out – they’re too unpredictable).
Players who need a move
I’ve been enjoying the articles on players on each club (undroppables, need a loan etc), and on an overlapping theme I’ve been thinking for a while about the players who desperately need a move:
Oxlade-Chamberlain: This guy is number 1 on my list, a talented player who isn’t so young anymore and needs to be playing each week. He’s not improved since he joined Arsenal and is stuck behind some bigger name attacking midfielders. Worse still, he’s starting to catch the Arsenal injury jinx. He could go to another good premier league club and be one of their main men (Everton, Stoke, Leicester?). Please, Alex, not another season of sitting around.
That’s my total list at the moment….oh ok have another one.
Delph: I could be wrong but I can’t see Delph as a Guardiola player, move on Fabian and start again, when was the last time an English player moved to City and improved?
Honourable mention to Wilshere who, although he is well suited to Arsenal, perhaps could do with a move to see if different training methods might better suit his fragile body.
Anyone else know a player who needs a move to kick on?
Single moment players
Sorry I’m late with this but does Johan Cruyff of ‘Cruyff Turn’ fame not qualify for the Single Moment Players list? He’s obviously known for so much more than just this one moment but in the context of some of the honourable mentions (Baggio, Van Basten) I’m surprised no one has mentioned Cruyff at all.
Also, Dave Whelan broke his leg in the FA Cup Final (you may have heard!)
Kev The Clarke, MUFC. Skem
Good single moment footballers list, enjoyed it a lot.
I’d like to throw my own contribution into the mix though – Roy Essandoh. His story is a pretty impressive one, for those who don’t know it goes roughly like this: Essandoh was a free agent, and to put it frankly, was pretty rubbish, lower league Wycombe were away at Premiership Leicester in QFs of the FA Cup in the early 00’s, had an injury crisis which meant they barely had a fit striker, but due to the cup-tied rule could barely find an eligible striker to sign, Essandoh’s agent sees an advert on Teletext of all places, signs on a short-term contract, comes on and scores a last minute winner.
The story’s impressive, maybe not impressive enough to merit a top 10 place, but good all the same. The real reason for my obsession however is this video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L6Z-L95ebpE – recounting the story, which is unintentional comedy gold. It really does have everything – a “reconstruction” of someone reading teletext and talking on the phone, a cameo appearance from Dave Basset marvelling at how high-tech teletext is, Essandoh himself talking about it while sat on a ludicrously OTT throne, footage of then-Wycombe manager Lawrie Sanchez watching the winner on a TV that looks smaller than a microwave after being sent off…..every time I watch it I find something else that amuses me about it.
I think my flatmates and I must be responsible for around half of the 23,000 views the video’s received, and just thought I’d share my love for it in an attempt for it to be rightfully recognised alongside Fawlty Towers and The Office as one of the finest comedy creations this country has produced.
Keep up the good work.
Following on from the discussions of a player being remembered for a single moment, I am sure some Man U fans may have other memories, but for me ‘Kung Fu Kick’ Cantona has to be up there in the single moment stakes
How could you leave out Nayim?
Eric Breitman, Spurs, NYC