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For me, José’s greatest achievement at Spurs so far has been convincing Serge Aurier that it’s not OK to have his clumsy secret twin brother stand in for him.
Mourinho is next level
And that people, is why, despite my appreciation of what Pochettinho achieved at Spurs, employing Jose is a masterstroke that could well move Spurs on another level in class.
My one bugbear with Poch was always his failure to use his subs well or in a timely fashion. There is no way Poch subs Dier for Eriksen tonight; not after 30mins; probably not until at least 65!!! It’s that kind of proactive, tactical move that will hopefully see us progress further under Mourinho!
Paul (Spurs) T.Wells
Spursiness is dead; Arseyness next?
At 2 -0 I was thinking that it would be wonderful if Mourinho’s Spurs were still Spursy. They were playing like the grass was six inches long.
At 4-2, yeah, it was never gonna happen. Ball boy for man of the match. Spursy is over. Into injury time now so safe to send this.
So who will take on the mantel? I reckon their North London rivals are prime candidates. Will it be called being Arsey?
Please let it be a thing.
I’ve never liked watching a Mourinho team before, I feel dirty. Alli will be in the next England squad. We’ve never had so many attacking options.
Defending Jose (even though the article was not a negative one)
Firstly I’d just like to say I’m writing this as a Chelsea fan in response to the Sarah Winterburn’s article post Tottenham vs Olympiacos. What a strange article? I’ve never seen a manager actually get criticised for making a tactical decision at 2-1 down to come back and win 4-2, with a team that hadn’t had back-to-back wins in how long!?
Now, weirdly, I’m not one of those Chelsea fans that adores Mourinho, I liked him when he first arrived and genuinely thought he was something really different and original at the time in a league that needed a shake up. But obviously post Real Madrid he changed, I know people think differently but he genuinely never used to be this horrible guy, those original Porto/Chelsea/Inter Mourinho teams would have died for him, I mean players crying when he left Inter, you can’t imagine that now, so he obviously wasn’t that appalling his entire career!
But then when that Real team turned against him, added with the club who he thought was his safe place, Chelsea, fell apart with him at helm and again losing the players, then jumping straight into the United job and obviously that went absolutely terrible (with 2 trophies) he was quite rightly labeled toxic! He genuinely became a very unpleasant person who had fallen from his perch and didn’t know how to deal with it.
My point is he has done the right thing since, he’s taken, whether out of choice or not, a long break from the game, hopefully looked back at what has been going wrong, learnt some new things and, aside from the Chelsea Tottenham link, his picked a good job to be honest! I think if he has gone back to something of the manager he was at the beginning of his career it could be a great adventure for both parties, it actually reminds me a lot of the situation he walked into when he first went to Chelsea! A well-liked manager sacked after doing good things with a team that hadn’t achieved much before but the owner saw potential to go even further so made a decision against the fans will and has taken a risk! It may not work, sure, but like most people I’m interested to see what happens, but reading articles, that to be honest I don’t really expect from F365, I usually go here to not read reactionary journalism written by someone who’s great journalist normally, but has consistently slated him, rightly so most of time, but I thought from you guys you would actually be a bit sensible and give him more than, you know, two games to judge him!? Two games in which he’s won both?
I have to state again that I write this as someone that really really disliked Mourinho since his Real Madrid days and really didn’t want him to return to Chelsea after that (never get back with your ex), think he’s been a terrible manager at United most recently and created horrible atmospheres at his last three clubs (especially what happened with Eva Carneiro) but seriously guys come on, let’s give the guy a chance, see what happens! Just give it a couple of months first THEN slate him not stop and roll out the ‘SAME OLD ONE’ headlines and stuff.
…I don’t entirely agree with Winty’s view of the early substitution and how that paints Mourinho. I vaguely recall him making first-half subs in his first spell as Chelsea manager and being seen as a wizard. Ultimately he read the game wrong beforehand and his team were getting beaten like they stole something. He fixed it quickly and turned the screw back on Olympiacos. The fact they won three points is quite impressive.
I also recall a book, Soccernomics, found that early subs tended to win more points for managers and Mourinho was up there as a frequent and early user of subs. Rafa, as much as I loved him, was dreadful at making subs to actually impact a result and I know Emery winds up a lot of Arsenal fans now. It’s a real talent to make subs effectively and maybe takes huge balls to sub a player in the first half without disheartening him completely. Mourinho did a good job in his post match to not damage Dier’s ego I thought.
…However well Spurs came back into that game, it definitely hurts to know I’m not Winty’s type.
On Real Madrid v PSG
What a game. End to end stuff with some scintillating play from both teams. Madrid in particular were effervescent at times, with Benzema, Kroos and Valverde among their best players. Ramos was also in beast mode which was great to see. Having read about their relative troubles this season it seems they may have rediscovered a bit of swagger. Hazard was a menace before injury forced him off. It was interesting to see the reaction from the notoriously fickle crowd to his replacement, Gareth Bale, as it seemed from the TV he was booed and applauded in equal measure. He nearly won the game late on with a smashing free kick that went off the post, which would have been very funny.
Marcelo has to be my favourite player to watch in world football. The amount of times he controls raking long diagonals with such casual skill is ridiculous, his delivery is always top notch and he seems to play with the aim to entertain first. Great player.
Onto PSG, who were played off the park at times but scored two goals in quick succession to level the match. It was hard to judge them too much from this game which was essentially a dead rubber for them, as we all know they have awesome firepower but their ability to actually win the biggest games remains in doubt. I always feel the attack lacks cohesion compared to the very best teams. Mbappe is terrifying though.
I fancy Liverpool/City/Bayern would beat either of these in the next rounds, but they wouldn’t go down without a fight. Bring on the knockouts.
Man Utd’s demise reflected in top ten
I read the players of the decade list thinking right, how can I disagree with this but largely can’t disagree. Silva and Aguero are magic players and deserve to be up there. Milner should be top. There should be full backs on the list, especially Kyle Walker.
There is not a Man United outfield player on the list.
Got me thinking how the decade is defined by the Aguero moment. Before the the Aguerooooo moment united would have won 4 of the last 10 leagues. Since that moment its 3 in 10 with none in 7. They find themselves deservedly mid table, uninspired but with lovely noodles. Your goal keeper does not get player of the season when you win the league.
It’s not that long ago that united were winning 3 in 4 leagues, and it’s only a few ingredients until the richest club in the world does again. Until then it’s important to enjoy every crap performance, and Jessie Lingard start, whilst it lasts.
Anyway, Champions League is on. Wonder how United are doing…
Alex, ABU till I die
Solskjaer is cocking this…
I am surprised that a tactical mess by Ole has not been written about.
Yes, he has made the right noises and has done sensibly in the transfer market/squad management. But we lost to Sheffield United because of Ole.
We started with the wrong formation. Playing 5-2-2-1 against a 5-3-2 played straight into the opposition game plan. They are familiar with their system. We were clueless. To wait 45 minutes to tweak tactics makes you wonder if he even realized what was going wrong. It was apparent in 15 minutes yet we made no change.
He started with the wrong team even for the same system. Tuanzebe over Jones was basic.
And, finally he got the system right when he sent on Greenwood. We overloaded their defence which meant that our midfield plus defence handled the clearances. It was perfect and the moment we went three up, he got rid of the reason it worked – Brought on Tuanzebe in midfield for Martial.
Ole is clueless when it comes to tactics. And he has been a manager for many years. It’s not something he needs to learn with this squad that deserves time.
Our players are not world beaters. Having some one making worse use of them hinders us more.
We can wait for two seasons when this tactical naivety will become apparent. Especially since the excuse of poor players will no longer be around. He will get found out then.
Are we a mess or what?
Sudarsan, Manchester United
…I keep reading mails from Man United fans arguing that OGS should be given more time and that one of the reasons would be that he did a great job over the summer, buying well while shifting some of the so-called deadwood (what a way to describe human beings, but that’s a topic for another day…) I clearly respect these opinions – it’s obviously a highly subjective matter – but I don’t agree.
Firstly, I don’t agree that he bought the right players for this club and the system the fans expect the team to play. Maguire is a great CB if you play with a fairly low defensive line, where his lack of pace doesn’t get exposed. What it has meant though, is that the defensive line has indeed gone back 10-15 yards to compensate, significantly increasing the space that the midfield has to cover and United don’t have the players in those positions to do that. The fact that he’s usually paired with a guy who’s afraid to head the ball (and sometimes a guy whose main strength is to head the ball while on the ground) doesn’t help.
AWB is a great defensive full-back, but he offers very little going forward. This clearly stifles the attacking play, making it more narrow. All the other top teams use fullbacks as attacking threats as well and United used to be second to none in this area, with Evra, Neville, etc. Someone recently suggested in the mailbox to shift AWB to a CB position. I personally believe that would be an excellent idea. Daniel James is obviously a great prospect, albeit far from the finished article – I’ll give OGS that one.
In terms of shifting “the deadwood”, how can it be deemed a success to force a few players to leave while not replacing them? Smalling, or Smalldini, as he’s known in Italy, would clearly have been a better choice in central defense than Victor Lindelof. Given the right partner and people in front of him, I think Smalling is an excellent defender. I would even argue that for United, he would be better than Maguire, but I do appreciate that I might be in a small minority on that one… Herrera gone without replacement – catastrophic management. Lukaku gone without replacement – mental. Sanchez gone but still costing 200k+ a week… I know Greenwood is getting a few minutes here and there, but to let two strikers go to make room for youth can’t, in my humble opinion, be used as an argument.
In my view, United haven’t improved one bit over the past 12 months – if anything, they have lost even more of the fear factor that they used to have. With two top managers currently available in England/Europe, I think it would be neglect not to make the change now. Allegri and Pocchetino won’t be available for free for much longer.
Tom K (Emery might be available soon though…)