We can take Neymar
If you thought that the end of the transfer window meant the end of piping hot
rumours mess, you were wrong. ‘NEYM IN FRAME’ shouts the back page of The Sun.
‘Neymar has put Premier League suitors on red alert after his dad revealed he could quit Barcelona,’ the piece begins. ‘Manchester United lead the race for the Brazil superstar, with rivals City and Chelsea also monitoring the situation.’
In fact, it’s not The Sun’s own work. They mention ‘reports in Spain’ in paragraph three, although fail to detail the actual source.
Luckily, Mediawatch started early today. The original report comes from Catalunya radio, and their journalist Jordi Borda.
Luckier still, Jordi Borda is on Twitter. So what did he tweet about Neymar ‘quitting’ Barcelona?
‘Neymar pare li ha dit al jutge que el seu fill només vol renovar amb l Barça tot i q té una oferta milionària x marxar. Ha parlat d’una oferta de 190 milions.’
Or, in English: ‘Neymar’s father told the judge that his son just wants to renew with the club even though he has a multi-million offer. He spoke of an offer of €190m.’
Weird how The Sun managed to translate the offer part correctly, but got the ‘revealed he could quit’ bit completely wrong? Mediawatch supposes numbers are just easier to translate.
Tackling the important issues
‘Move over Eva Carneiro…Brazilian medic Rossana Torales must be the sexiest doctor in football’ – The Sun website.
Yeah Eva, move over. It doesn’t matter about your medical qualifications, CV or previous experience, because we think this person is better looking. And to us, that’s what matters.
‘A SEXY medic branded the ‘New Eva Carneiro’ is breaking hearts all over Brazil,’ the piece begins.
We’ll stop you there. She’s only been ‘branded’ that by you, because that’s as complex as your thought process gets.
The Sun’s world, where apparently it’s still 19-f**king-73.
China in his hands
‘EXCLUSIVE: Teixeira set for £35m China switch as Liverpool lose out on Brazilian’, reads the headline on MailOnline’s football homepage.
‘Liverpool target Alex Teixeira will become the latest player to move to the mega rich Chinese Super League in the next 24 hours in the biggest transfer deal of the year so far worth around £35million,’ Sami Mokbel’s ‘exclusive’ begins.
‘The stunning move which will see the Brazilian forward join from Shakhtar Donetsk to link up with Ramires at Jiangsu Suning comes a huge blow to Liverpool, who refused to bid higher than £30m.’
A stunning move sure, but ‘exclusive’? Website thisisanfield.com had the story three hours before MailOnline published their copy.
Thisisanfield also had the common courtesy to credit their source, Brazilian media outlet Globo Esporte and their journalist Rodrigo Cerqueira.
Maybe ‘exclusive’ just meant ‘exclusive to England’. Sorry no, wait. ‘To an English newspaper’.
Pep in your step
In their eternal wisdom, Sky Sports News HQ asked (and presumably therefore paid) Tony Cascarino and Steve Howey to each come up with their expected Manchester City team under Pep Guardiola next season.
Mediawatch imagines that when both proffered no inside knowledge of Guardiola’s transfer targets, they were reassured that it didn’t really matter. “Fill your boots, boys,” a producer possibly said. And fill their boots they did.
Cascarino adds Seamus Coleman, John Stones, Marcelo, Luka Modric, Paul Pogba and Andres Iniesta to City’s current side.
Wonderfully, Howey somehow manages to go one step further into surreality. He picks Coleman (why always Coleman?), Pogba and Iniesta but also adds Raphael Varane, David Alaba, Antoine Griezmann and Gareth Bale to the team. Mediawatch would conservatively estimate those signings to cost £360m.
‘Pep doesn’t even play 4-4-2,’ as one rogue pointed out. Because that’s the biggest issue here.
The grade and the good
A midweek Premier League programme only means one thing: Skysports.com’s Premier League grades. This week they’ve got Nigel Winterburn and Tony Cottee in to offer their thoughts. This is a job that clearly needed more manpower.
Winterburn is clearly the star of the show, bringing some of the most incredible insight Mediawatch has been unfortunate enough to read. Sit back and learn.
– Liverpool are awarded the same grade as West Brom. That’s a team that lost 2-0 vs one that drew 1-1. Excellent start.
– On Arsenal: “I think they needed to win the game.”
– On Fraser Forster: “Fraser Forster who is a goalkeeper of fantastic quality, but as we keep saying that’s what top goalkeepers are there to do.”
– On Norwich: “Alex Neil is going to have to find the solution to scoring goals without conceding too many or they are going to find themselves very quickly in the bottom three.”
That last one made Mediawatch hoot. Thank goodness we got the expert opinion on how to win matches: Score more than you concede.
Easier said than done
“I think he’ll be more than disappointed, Laurent Blanc, he really will. Luis Suarez, from an attacking point of view, was fantastic. But when you know you’ve got a player like him that will commit you, that will take you into the box if he can, you’ve just got to wait for help.
“You try and wait for your team-mates to get around, you delay, deny space and try and show him a certain way. He did everything he shouldn’t do. He just carried on towards him and Suarez eight times out of 10 will stick it through your legs, or if not then around you the other side” – Gary Neville has some advice for Paris St Germain manager Laurent Blanc and David Luiz on how to cope with Luis Suarez in April 2015.
That evening, Luis Suarez had scored twice. On Wednesday, Suarez managed four against Neville’s Valencia. Perhaps Blanc will give him a call to advise how to keep him down to just two?
“I hope to score seven goals or more again. It’s always good to score but, this season, I have missed a lot. Sometimes it is the luck and I hope it turns. I know it is coming though because, okay, the luck can resolve itself. In the last few games, I’ve had the chance to score but the keeper is there or he makes a great save. That’s football as well but I hope the luck turns. I know it is coming” – Marouane Fellaini.
Small point, Marouane. You missing the target or a goalkeeper making a save isn’t luck. It’s skill, or a lack of.
“He [John Terry] hasn’t been as commanding as last season, when he played every minute of every game and was outstanding, but it’s not as if he’s been any worse than any of the other Chelsea defenders” – Glenn Hoddle, January 23.
“He’s still performing at his very best. People put him under pressure and were wrong in the criticism he got earlier in the season. I think he’s playing as well as he’s ever played” – Hoddle, February 3, on BT Sport ahead of Chelsea’s game against Watford.
Terry must have really impressed Hoddle against MK Dons and ten-man Arsenal.
Honestly, don’t just write down everything they say
‘They’ve got to sort that out or we might see Stoke re-evaluating where they can finish again because they had a good run of form and Mark Hughes spoke about re-evaluating where they could finish, but now they might be changing it back to what they thought before’ – Nigel Winterburn, transcribed on Skysports.com.
Ask a simple (and long-winded) question…
‘How did Man City transform themselves from a club slumping down the leagues, to two-time Premier League winners appointing the world’s best boss?’ – Skysports.com.
Sheikh Mansour is worth over £20bn. We’re racking our brains.
Metro headline of the day
‘Man Utd’s Rooney has just embarrassed Arsenal with this mind-blowing stat’ – Metro.
Perhaps if you write headlines for the Metro all day, Wayne Rooney scoring more league goals than Arsenal in the last month really is ‘mind-blowing’.
Recommended reading of the day
Rich Jolly on Leicester and Manchester City
Barney Ronay on England’s strikers
Patrick Noyland on the loan system