That’s the question posed by one mailer. Also: Someone tries to explain Wayne Rooney’s regression at Manchester United, and we have more football lookalikes.
If you have anything to say on any subject, mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s Klooooopmaaaaaaas (nearly)
This is great, it’s exactly like waiting for your birthday when you were about eight- only even more exciting, because it could magically happen a day earlier than you thought. Is it Kloppmas yet?
Matt (Never been happier to be so, so wrong about my club) LFC
The biggest Klopp worry
Having just indulged in the hilarity of watching the video of Jurgen Klopp soaring through the air off a swing to dunk a basketball in a kids sized net, what worries me most about him, as a lifelong Man Utd fan, is how hard it’s going to be to hate him.
Clubs as countries
The International break means we get to watch countries instead of our own clubs (Thanks. For. That.), so in keeping with this theme, here’s a few PL clubs as countries of the World …
Arsenal: Australia – nice enough to look at and is a place that has plenty of cash, but c’mon, what has Australia done of any real meaning lately? It’s also quite expensive.
Chelsea: Russia – I don’t need to explain this one, do I?
Crystal Palace: India – how does this 3rd World country manage to mix it up with the big boys? Oh right, they have a nuke (Cabaye).
Everton: Japan – ran quite well and most don’t mind them, but they are never really going to trouble anyone.
Liverpool: The UK – used to be positively massive, crushing everything and everyone in their path. These days, however, all that power has gone and now they get upset because no one talks about them any more, even though they still think everyone should; can be most annoying.
Manchester City: China – was quite big a long time ago, then everyone forgot about them. Now-a-days though, they cannot be ignored and are set to be the next super power.
Manchester United: The US of A – bold, brash, in your face, rich, rubs it in everyone’s faces, thinks the World loves them even though most of the World is not particularly fond.
Newcastle United: Mexico – should really be a great place to be, but is ran by people who essentially don’t know what they’re doing.
Sunderland: The Marshall Islands – standing at an average of only 2 metres above sea level they are at great risk from climate change. Yes, they are going down.
Right to reply
You play friendlies to make your team better, try new ideas, test yourself. No point Wales playing Malta as a warm up going into the Euro’s next Summer, because that won’t prepare us. We need to be playing stronger sides to see what happens. If we get beat, we have a reality check, if we win, then what we are doing works.
No one in Wales is getting carried away, least of all Coleman.
You don’t get to the top ten in the world and play minnows.
Emails such as Jae’s Wednesday evening are very narrow minded.
Once in a lifetime
Afternoon all,I just wanted to refer to Jae’s email from earlier regarding the once in a lifetime Wales captain…is that the first time Ashley Williams has been referred to as such?Cheers
The Scotland way
I think Liam got it all wrong in this morning’s mailbox. I don’t think he realises what it is like to be a Scot.
The most likely scenario in my mind in the following:
Germany beat Ireland, Scotland beat Poland.
Ireland or Poland win on Sunday and we lose to Gibraltar. It’s the Scotland way.
Nick, CFC, Inverness
Explaining the Rooney regression
I’ve been spending far too much time trying to understand what’s happened to Rooney. Probably longer than Rooney or his manager has, in truth. But I’ve come to some conclusions.
The obvious first facet to the answer is that having been played in so many unnatural positions for so many years that he’s actually lost the simple instinct he was born with, that made him such a fearsome player. He’s a good honest pro, and when asked to do a job has always done it to the fullest of his ability or brain, which means forgetting or overriding what he would normally choose to do.
Managers and commentators have said much the same, such as not wanting to take what makes Rooney so special from him, including that desire to go Steven Gerrard / Roy of the Rovers and be everywhere doing everything. He’s been moulded into a player who should stay in position. But what position is that? Is he supposed to be out-wide this game, or deeper, or right at the pointy end? It’s bound to mess with his game, when he can’t just do it on instinct. The best players are at their best when they’re just channelling the football gods. Right now his sense of self is a bit lost.
The second clear facet is that he is much older. What we’re wanting to see is that young kid belting around, taking on shots that he’s no right to take on and seeing them fly into the top corner. That always departs with age and especially with injury. He has so much experience he’s naturally going to be picking options rather than just doing.
Third, he’s now captaining the side and indeed the entire club. That sense of responsibility means he’s going to be more aware of making the wrong decisions. By contrast, of those players with whom he’s compared (Messi, Ronaldo, Neymar, Hazard) none of them are regular captains. Those strings naturally inhibit him as a player.
My final thought is this. Since Rooney has lost that killer instinct and pace that he had as a younger, and is now established as the captain while still having a great deal of creativity and skill (far more than he is popularly credited with on these pages), I think he should probably be moving to that Pirlo role… pulling strings, sitting deep, captaining the side and contributing where he doesn’t inhibit the team. Anyway, just a thought…
Is Ancelotti all that?
In response to Chris, SAF Stand this morning, and his statem,ent “The man simply gets results with minimal fuss”.
I’m going to play devil’s advocate here; is Carlo really all that? The man is exceptional in one off games, as his cup competition record suggest. 3 Champions Leagues, 3 “FA Cups”, 2 FIFA Club World Cups, and UEFA 3 Super Cups is testament to that.
My question, however, concerns his league title count. It’s 3. In 20 years of management, he has won 3 league titles. 20 years that has seen him take in Juventus, AC Milan, Chelsea, Real Madrid and Paris Saint Germain. And let’s be honest, that Ligue 1 title is a “gimme” when you’re managing PSG. So while there’s no doubt that the divine eyebrow is a “top top” manager, I’m not so sure he’s the answer for any club looking to win a league title………
Harry The Manc.
…or Carlo for United?
Now that it’s pretty much certain that Klopp is off to Liverpool, it struck me that Ancelotti is probably the last “big” manager on the market
So, my question for United fans is: Would you like to see Van Gaal ushered out at the end of the year if it meant hiring Ancelotti? After all, Van Gaal only has one more year on his contract and giving him that year might mean you’re left drinking from the dregs once he’s gone – and that final year might well prove a fruitless year anyway, based on what we’ve seen from Van Gaal so far. Ancelotti is, in my opinion, a far superior manager and he will be in high demand once the big teams start firing managers.
Of course, this all hinges on how well Van Gaal does this year and whether or not Mourinho remains at Chelsea; I reckon Abramovich would snap up Ancelotti if he fired Jose midway through the current season. But surely, from what you’ve seen of Van Gaal so far, you’d love to see Ancelotti at the helm next year?
I went to see Sir Alex Ferguson speak last night about his new book ‘Leading’. What a fantastic experience, even if it was marred by the fact I had to sit in a room with a couple hundred United fans.
I feel it is extremely important to listen to someone of Ferguson’s pedigree while he still alive. It is an experience I will take with me my entire life and it was an opportunity I am very grateful for.
Consistency and humility were his keys to success. The former you can read in the statistics. The latter I observed last night. The man exudes it and I feel it’s the most important trait a successful person can have.
If you find yourself with the opportunity to see him talk I highly recommend it.
Brian (Happy Klopp Day) LFC
Great to see that along with Blatter, Michel Platini has also been banned for his taking part in one of FIFA’s dodgy super-happy-bonus-party’s.
Surely now (with a capital SURELY) that will put an end to the ridiculous notion that a man that was Blatter’s protege is the right man to replace Blatter and reform FIFA. It will be very interesting to see The FA’s response to Platini being banned but if they continue to back and support him then they are hypocrites of the highest order and no more have the interest of the game at heart than any of the corrupt individuals currently banned or under investigation.
Reform is, obviously, very badly and desperately needed and I never thought that Platini with his close links to the exact model that was so brazenly self-serving and inept and failed so catastrophically was ever the man to deliver it.
Kevin Walsh, Luimneach
I was reading Matthew Syed’s article on Mourinho in the Times over someones shoulder on the tube and thought how good it would be for Mediawatch to also highlight good, well written stories in the papers and on blogs, too. I didn’t write in, but massive props to you for todays Mediawatch – I hope it continues.
Matt, EFC, London
Following Nick Miller’s article on Tim Sherwood and the numerous examples “he looks like…” I just wanted to throw my hat into the ring on who Tim Sherwood reminds me of. Following Brendan’s demise I imagine that those in F365 Towers’ would be fretting on no longer being able to use The Office analogies in Mediawatch and the like. Well, Tim Sherwood is Lee from the Office!
The mix of arrogance and cockiness, with the sense that he can’t see, or doesn’t want to see what’s really happening around him (see his post-match quotes after the Birmingham City match against Dawn’s obvious fawning for Tim). Plus, the voice. As a Northerner down here I admit that I’m not the most nuanced and picking apart Southern dialects but they sound exactly the same.
Someone please let me know that I’m not alone in thinking this!
Jonathan Beatty: Mesut Ozil looks like Marty Feldman….it’s uncanny.
Jurgen Klopp looks like Tony Wilson.