Keep your brilliant mails coming to email@example.com. We can get through this international break together!
Arteta and the DNA boys
I’ve reviewed most of the responses to the question why is Arteta rated higher than the other DNA boys and I’ve come to a conclusion (Arsenal fans are using a different Performance Measuring Scheme from Utd and Other So called Elite clubs
At most Elite clubs This is currently the measure of success
The Premier League or Champions Leagues Tite – Well done and you get to mention it for at least a year
Qualified for Champions league and Won a trophy (Including the Qualifying via Europa ) You can gloat a little and it’s still a decent season
Qualified for Champions league No trophy – Hey you can maybe talk about it that week but you did the bare Minimum
You didn’t Qualify for Champions league but you won this nice shiny trophy/Qualified for Europa -Thanks it will be something nice for the fans to remember you by, It’s time to mutually consent you
Didn’t Qualify for Champions league , No trophy – You will find out about your sacking with the rest of us as the yellow tape springs up on sky announcing your demise .
Arsenals fans are apparently applying the standards of a smaller club which are
Premier League Title / Win |Champions League – Team enter folklore , possibly statutes are erected
Qualified for Champions League / WIth A Trophy – You get considered One of your club’s great sdes they will be talking about you in pubs for years
Qualified for Champions League No trophy -See above
You didn’t Qualify for Champions league but you won this nice shiny trophy/Qualified for Europa -We had a great season ,Next year will be our year and other cliches
Didn’t Qualify for Champions league , No trophy – Shrug of shoulders , Managers survival will depend on the position and how much goodwill he has with the board and Fans
Point is the FA cup by itself is hardly ever seen as a decent return at a Top club. LVG got one and got sacked .If Ole had prioritised the FA cup run last year instead of catching Leicester even if he had won the final , Poch would have been sitting in the dugout against Hodgson at the start of this season with 3 or four decent signings and a dodgy Argentinian thrown in,,……
This amount of crowing from Arsenal Fans for an FA Cup in a season were they finished 8th has only happened at Portsmouth (2008) ,Everton 1995) and Wigan 2013 .It was allowable because those are smaller clubs are Arsenal Fans accepting that this is their level ?
Ah the lamps vs arteta vs ole debate. I am a Chelsea fan and you (365) have been biased against Lamps from the start. I have falsely perceived Ole to be a smiley patsy. And I think we have all perceived Arteta to being a visionary manager after just a few months. First for Lamps:He doesn’t have as clear a ‘growth strategy’ as Arteta because he didn’t tighten up the defense before focusing on scoring more goals – because yeah football is just like constructing a building and it would’ve been a much clearer plan for us laymen to understand. Lamps had to replace a man who was responsible for something approaching 50% of our goal involvements with the high school replacements. I think most Chelsea fans’ worries in 2019 were how we were going to score goals. Not only did we create lots of chances but bonus of kids bla bla bla. Additionally, Lamps beat all of the super good managers whilst changing formations for fun (remember that 3 at the back 2-0 win against spurs). Why have 365 been biased? (I don’t hold grudges I promise). 1)Prick of the week – when he did what literally every manager has done and hypothesize on how the match would turn out had certain events been different and 2) the f365 video where Ms Winterburn commented on how brendan rodgers was clearly better than a couple of the top 6 managers – I wonder which two, 3) All of the early losers. I get it, he’s posh(ish) had a lot of doors opened for him and has unfashionable (at least on this site) media friends. If you divorce the perception of him from his actual job it has been pretty damn good for a rookie manager learning on the job. Also timed my mail well (Lampardesque!) in the middle of a nice unbeaten run but completely recognise there is a very long way to go – just asking for no quick judgements on Lamps.
I realise the hypocrisy of immediately perceiving of Ole as the feel good guy without any tactics at all – it’s just his face! Divorced from that, his overall record is pretty good. If Man U had as coherent a transfer strategy and ‘joined-up thinking’ as Chelsea did, Ole would be far better situated. For me, he has shown to be a skilled tactician but maybe doesn’t get the same buy-in over his methods from players required to win consistently – and that might be his downfall.
Speaking of that, Mr. Buy-in himself – Arteta got some well-earned buy-in after impressive initial victories. Made sense, he had a dodgy backline and elite attackers so tighten and counter. Press intelligently but conservatively and rely on deadly finishing. I think this is where the love-in started, from both us and his players. While lamps focussed on attack first, Arteta focused on the other end which was more reliable for those early key victories. This season has seen them both attempt to address the opposite end and Lamps has shown signs (admittedly against weaker oppo) whilst Arteta has not yet. I am not denying he seems a good manager but think his perception is higher because his plan is easier to perceive.
Thank you for coming to my Ted talk.
Saaj (getting tired of all of the walking in parks) CFC
In response to Mick and his Arteta bashing, Klopp didn’t win anything in his first 2 years at Liverpool. I HATE this short term thinking. Arteta took over a broken club, and there are gonna be set backs. But if you think chopping and changing managers the first sign of any difficulties is going to fix things, you’re wrong!
And it isn’t going sh*t shaped, it is still early, no one is running away with the league. Sure, we aren’t challenging, but that is because real change takes time.
John Matrix AFC
I’m surprised Simon, London hasn’t heard fans talk about Man United’s improvements under Ole. He was in fact labelled a tactical genius just the other day. Several of us have also been harping on about our league finish last year, the clear out of several aging players, induction of youth, some sensible signings, etc., etc. I suppose it is easy to miss in amongst all the negativity surrounding Man United and Ole.
On the topic of Ole/Lampard/Arteta. I think making these comparisons on who is better is pointless at this stage. Probably never will be since the three clubs in question are very different. All four of them are at their first truly big managerial job, they all have varying levels of experience, and all have achieved something or the other in their tenures so far. They have also made mistakes.
Someone mentioned recently that no other club in the PL would ever want to hire Ole as manager. Fair point. However, I can’t imagine any PL clubs hiring Arteta or Lampard either. I mean why would they, what exactly are their achievements or qualifications at managing top-level teams? They all seem like huge risks if not for the fact threat they are ex-players. It is however interesting that all three clubs decided to go for former players who are also totally inexperienced at this level.
MM, Man United, India
FFS, even as a United fan I can’t stand all these boring arguments trying to proclaim Ole is better than Arteta and Lampard or Lampard is better than Ole and Arteta. I can’t remember what happened last week so I can’t remember which order it goes in now. Jesus guys, I got it when we had Fergie, Mourinho, Wenger and Benitez ripping up Europe but now we are just arguing over who is the tallest dwarf. Liverpool and City are so far ahead of us it’s embarrassing. Like a not so popular Western leader clinging on, it’s like when yesterday’s news doesn’t know it’s yesterday’s news.
I pray to god we become relevant again and start competing for things but until then let’s all agree that all three managers are doing OK and that’s it. None of them are sh*te, none of them are great. That’s it.
Darren, Manc in Barcelona and first in line for the vaccine!
Glad someone called out ‘the pogba question’ claiming him to be perhaps the worst Man Utd signing in history. While there’s plenty of recent competition for that, it is true that Pogba’s case is unique in many ways because for a long time it was utd fans themselves who bought into the deception clamoring for their false messiah in the most embarrasing terms. It wasn’t just media. It was YOU as well. I distinctly remember when he left utd the first time for Juventus (it’s only a matter of time for the second & final…) how media immediately labeled his departure ‘Fergie’s worst mistake’ piling on & on in disbelief some even going the distance claiming he ought to have gotten sacked for that.. lol.
What followed was an endless stream of Utd fans sharing in their stories of abject dejection & sorrow each one displaying an unbearable degree of sycophancy lavishing excessive praise (for a completely undeserving player..) as though that proved your knowledge as a footballing savant.
I distinctly recall in this very forum a Utd fan who perhaps wanting to show off his credentials, claimed he would visit Carrington training ground just to watch Pogba and his starstruck words regarding watching him play for reserves was (to the best of my memory) “like watching a grown man play alongside schoolchildren”…. Mic drop.
Pogba basically had english groupies following him around! The pied piper leading the children out of Hamelin.. in Manchester. It doesn’t get more cringe than that. I recall laughing with my brother at how stupid the average english football fan is. How can you confuse reality to that extent with a hollywood-esque narrative purely blown out of proportion to sell papers, garner clicks and inflate his price tag?? Even at Juventus, the best midfielder by far in that team was Arturo Vidal, a player who probably was at best awarded a paragraph on this site. And then, probably Pirlo.
The way I understand the ‘Pogba question’ now is rather philosophical. He is clearly undeserving of the multimillion contracts he gets. Undeserving of the unwarranted fame he garnered. But in this world he’s earned it. The only way to understand the Pogba’s of the world is thru the doctrine of Karma. The reasons why life & football were so generous with him when he has given back so little to the game will remain a mystery which are impossible to understand intellectually. By the time he was 20 years old he was already a world famous multimillionaire…. and yet you see him now bought for 90 million after 4 largely difficult years giving away stupid penalties one after the other (there’s a small collection of them by now; remember the hillarious handball against west ham??)
You see him not really knowing what he’s doing, just being completely average to awful. Unable to alter any big games. Incapable of being the leader on the pitch & the dressing room you expected. But here’s the catch; he was never made for any of that. It was a mirage. A ponzi scheme you bought into. A fantastic set of feel-good lies you fell for due to the inherent tribalistic nature of football and the desire to belong to something greater than yourselves. A story you thought you could tell your grandchildren about the next ‘ballon d’Or’ you had and lost.. until you got him back. Except then, the nightmare began. There was no more hollywood script left. Reality kicked in.
Raúl H. García (If only you had Thiago Alcántara!..) LFC YNWA-1892
Rating the Prem CMs
Ryan C, LFC doesn’t think Scholes deserves to be in the top 4 CMs to play in the PL. Not surprising considering the LFC at the end of his mail. I’m sure Scholes will be devastated by the news. Let’s hope he can find some solace through the 11 PL winners medals at home in these trying times.
MM, Man United, India (Am I the only one who would put Scholes at the top of this list?)
Simple really would Gerrard or Lampard get dropped for a champions league final? Not once but twice.
Really the debate is which of Gerrard or Lampard was better, and for me its Gerrard as he achieved more playing with far weaker players. They both scored more goals, more assists, more individual awards, more ballon d’or nominations and votes, Scholes famously has 0 votes. Gerrard also scored more goals at international tournaments and was in the Euro 2012 team of the tournament but Lampard has most PL goals and Assists , Scholes is way behind.
If you want someone to score goals, assist, tackle, pass, take penalties, corners, free kicks then its Gerrard or Lampard if you want Tempo than it’s Scholes and see how many games that alone wins you.
Jay, WHU (That FA cup goal still haunts me.)
Ryan C, LFC rating prem era central midfielders and only putting Vieira, Keane and Scholes as ‘honourable mentions’ because they only did it in a 2 man midfield rather than a 3 man midfield must be one of the strangest things I’ve read in the mailbox. It is completely counter intuitive. Those 3 players, (and as an Arsenal fan I’d throw Petit in as well even though he didn’t stay long) could defend and attack – they had to, that’s the point and there really should be no doubt that all 4 would be absolute giants of the game right now in a 3 man midfield. I actually think that any of those 4 in a 2-man central midfield would still dominate and beat most of the 3-man midfields in the league currently. This isn’t meant to take away from the goalscoring feats of Lampard and Gerrard in particular but both played in 3 man midfields and were released of their defensive duties, they are effectively old fashioned No.10’s so should be compared against players like Bergkamp, Sheringham and Zola from past generations. I don’t have too much doubt that some of those midfielders listed in the mail would have performed very well in a 2 man midfield as well…..but against Vieira/Petit/Keane/Scholes in their prime? – no chance, those 4 dominate them all day long.
Expected to see someone mention in in this morning’s mailbox, but how great is it to see Greg Clarke jump/pushed from his role as FA chairman after his awful comments in Parliament yesterday.
For those that didn’t see/hear – in a nutshell, used the term ‘coloured’, referred to gay football players making a ‘life choice’ and saying female footballers don’t like footballs being hit hard at them. All comments in isolation are terrible, but this was all said in the same session. Yuck.
The one silver lining of all of this is that action has been taken. We’ve all seen over the years the governing bodies not taking racism/homophobia/sexism seriously and a couple of years ago I don’t think Greg Clarke would have lost his job. The fact that he has suggests the tide may be turning and that the FA are taking discrimination a bit more seriously. It’s just a shame it takes horrible moments like this for change to happen.
I seriously hope the FA consider putting someone a bit more progressive in charge. This could be an extinction event for the dinosaurs at the top preventing our game from becoming the best version of itself.
Lee (suggestions, anyone?), LFC
I couldn’t give a shit about Greg Clarke really. He’s just another passenger on the football gravy train, being paid inordinate amounts of money to oversee a game that he seems out of touch about.
The thing is though, his out of date language shouldn’t have cost him his job.
I seem to remember John Motson using the same turn of phrase in his last year of commentating and the cancel culture heroes of social media tried to ruin his reputation and end his career. Yes, we should all keep up to date with the fluid nature of language, and it’s not up to me as a white fella to question if the phrase “coloured people” is offensive. If that’s how it is, then fine. “People of colour” is okay though, isn’t it? I see the acronym “POC” being used all the time, and I have to say that I really struggle to understand the qualitative difference, but as I say, that’s not really my distinction to make. If “coloured people” has been consigned to the bin of out of date language, then I have no problem with this.
But Clarke (and Motson) were just out of date. They clearly meant no offence, and apologised immediately. Christ, if you look at the context that Clarke used the phrase in, he was defending non-white people from racist abuse.
Racism is real, it’s appalling, and it’s on the rise. We should fight it at every opportunity. How is fucking up the reputation of an out of touch 63 year old man who mistakenly used a phrase that was fine a few years ago fighting racism? It’s a bullshit over-reaction that will have right wingers all over the world rubbing their hands with glee as use this as an example to show that the playing field isn’t level any more.
I’m an old school leftie, by the way. I passionately believe that everyone should have the same opportunities in life, regardless of demographics. I despise racism from my very core.
But this is bollocks. An apology should have enough.
Mat (I hate international football weekends)
Just read Andrew Cole’s comments on Mason Greenwood, and can’t think why he’s getting treaded differently to Phil Froden. It cannot be a ABU thing as we are bobbins plus Sterling has been treated disgracefully, just can’t see what the common link is.
David McDougall (angry that this still happens in 2020)
The past year, I have been observing and lamenting the unraveling of my beloved sport, no thanks to killjoys that threaten the very spirit of our beautiful game in its current evolved form.
I am absolutely enraged with the anti-VAR troglodytes who at every turn are trying to destroy all that is good about this cutting-edge technology. They whinge CONSTANTLY about how it’s ruining the game, how common sense is going out the window and to bring back the “good old days”. Toys. Pram. Out. Weh weh weh.
Time to face up to reality, mate. Jobs gave us the iPhone, Musk gave us Tesla, God gave us VAR!
These VAR-MEN are not the pedantic trolls you make them out to be! They are proper hardworking men who suffer in heated rooms in Stockley Park, with VAR plastered on all 4 walls – a constant reminder of the heavy burden they carry on their tired shoulders. No men should ever have to perform this thankless task but yet they do it for the good of football, for the good of mankind – frame by frame, second by second, armpit hair by armpit hair.
Now given the recent handball controversies, a mate of mine offered a humble proposal to make VAR even better than it already is.
The problem with the holy union of handball and VAR is not about the definitions of what a limb is or even the VAR process. We need to return to fundamentals – the punishment need to fit the crime. In its current form, it’s way too binary and that is the source of the angst. We need to bring back the under-utilised “indirect free kick” but with some tweaks.
Really we just need to define clearly the handball categories – there should only be 3 – and apply the appropriate punishment.
Category 1 – the “Suarez” Handball: Offending player denying an obvious goal scoring opportunity, clear and intentional use of the hand. No debate here. —>> Penalty.
Category 2 – the “Ambiguous” Handball: Offending player being too close to the ball and is unable to move hand away. Referee unable to determine any hint of intent or cheek. —>> Indirect Free Kick.
Category 3 – The “Gettin’ Jiggy with It” Handball: This falls in the “arms in an unnatural position” territory with a clear hint of cheekiness (expanded body, feet firmly planted on the ground, arms moving towards ball’s trajectory) —>> Indirect Free Kick award, but players in wall are required to face the ball and are not allowed to cover their groin.
On my part, there is a sense this proposal just… works! If nothing else, it gives our poor referees options to lay down the law without stirring too much fuss. In recent examples, the handballs largely fall under Category 2 and 3. With the option of awarding a indirect free kick, the attacking team is still given an advantage to score but not a near-certain goal in the form of a penalty which completely changes the course of the game. The added disincentive of lining up 10 yards from a ball with your exposed groins will discourage any cheeky Cat 3 handball attempts.
Exiled in sunny California
Gabriel Schrute (Nod to my mate Ed Koch in Atlanta – it’s his brilliant idea)
Ro No Ldo
Please Ed, if you’re reading this mailbox, please don’t get Ronaldo back.
Mark Smith and Matt Stead know all about disappointments. Join them to discover that Chelsea are the only Big Six club without representation on this week’s top ten.