From ‘choking’ to ‘impressive’ in three days for Liverpool…

Date published: Thursday 28th February 2019 11:59

Corner kicked
‘As for Liverpool fans thinking it is finally going to be their year, disappointment is around the corner’ – Charlie Wyett, The Sun, February 25.

Or a 5-0 win over a Watford side who were unbeaten in 11 games. What a ‘disappointment’.

 

Bottle it up
Charlie Wyett was at Anfield to watch Liverpool on Wednesday evening – proof that if there is a God, they have an absolutely sensational sense of humour.

You see, it was Wyett who wrote on Monday that: ‘Liverpool fans chanted about being top of the league but, deep down, they know their team is choking.’

And it was Wyett who wrote on Monday that: ‘It is almost as if they are now giving Spurs a real fight to land the crown as the great bottle jobs of English football.’

And it was Wyett who wrote on Monday that: ‘Jurgen Klopp’s team look to be haunted by the ghosts of 2014, Liverpool’s previous title cock-up.’

And it was Wyett who described Liverpool as ‘very Spursy’ on Monday.

By Thursday these ‘haunted’, ‘choking’ ‘great bottle jobs’ were ‘impressive’, Trent Alexander-Arnold was ‘outstanding’, Mo Salah ‘overpowered’ his opponent, Sadio Mane was ‘outrageous’ and Divock Origi ‘took centre stage’ on ‘a calm evening for everyone at Liverpool’.

Funny, that.

But Wyett is not about to back down now. He’s in far, far too deep.

‘While there had been a major wobble from Jurgen Klopp’s side with one win from five, this was impressive stuff from a strangely limp Watford team to ease the nerves around Anfield.’

That ‘major wobble’ in full:

A home draw with a Leicester side that had beaten Manchester City 35 days prior.
An away draw with a West Ham side that Manchester City only beat with a controversial penalty at home 23 days later.
An emphatic win over Bournemouth.
A draw against a Bayern Munich side that won had eight of their last nine matches.
A draw away at Manchester United.
No defeats.
Three fewer Premier League points than Manchester City from January 25 to February 25.

And it really is a mystery just why Watford were ‘strangely limp’. Obviously it had nothing to do with their ‘great bottle job’ opponents.

 

Choke festival
Charlie Wyett’s final paragraph, The Sun, February 28: ‘If they are to win their first title in 29 years, Liverpool certainly need a few more performances like this.’

Charlie Wyett’s first paragraph, The Sun, February 25: ‘Liverpool fans chanted about being top of the league but, deep down, they know their team is choking.’

But why would a team that ‘is choking’ even bother trying to win the title?

 

Is there an Echo in here?
Liverpool being really rather good has unfortunately masked the biggest story related to the club this week.

Thank the lord that the Liverpool Echo are here to shed a light on such important information.

…according to Football Manager, which has thankfully been added to the headline in the actual story. And which renders it a pretty meaningless piece. Lovely.

 

Oh, the taste of your lips I’m on a ride
‘They are the team to watch in the Premier League, acting on a responsibility to play the game with a bit of style and panache. Tottenham are committed to it’ – Neil Ashton, The Sun, February 15.

‘Chelsea is a toxic place right now’ – Neil Ashton, The Sun, February 27.

You have to laugh.

 

Ruled the roost
‘Spurs cannot be completely ruled out of the title race despite this latest setback’ – Darren Lewis, Daily Mirror.

They probably can.

 

Sob, Dillon
‘Sarri now faces a dilemma – does he stick with Caballero, make Kepa sweat on his place as a statement or risk a long-term fall-out with a £71.6million player?’ – Andrew Dillon, The Sun.

He did confirm Kepa “is back in the team for the weekend”, and that he is “of course” his first-choice goalkeeper in the post-match press conference.

You’d think Dillon of all people would have noticed.

 

Mail order
Reads the sub-headline on the Daily Mail back page:

‘Sarri dumps Kepa then Willy repels Tottenham’

Tottenham didn’t have a single shot on target. And if you’re going to use his first name, at least give us a pun.

 

Ask a simple question
‘Was Sarri wrong to drop Kepa?’ – BBC Sport.

No. They won. With a clean sheet.

 

Crosswords
John Cross, February 13:

John Cross, Daily Mirror, February 28:

‘It is becoming almost inevitable that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will get the manager’s job, and now it is surely just a question of when rather than if.’

 

Jolly Rodgers
‘Leicester will back new boss Brendan Rodgers with a bumper £200MILLION transfer kitty,’ writes Mike McGrath of The Sun.

Oh wow. That’s huge. So huge that the ‘million’ simply has to be capitalised for EFFECT.

Please, tell us more about how Rodgers will be spending all this money.

‘And the ex-Liverpool and Celtic chief is ready to launch a £40m summer swoop for Bournemouth’s England striker Callum Wilson.’

Crikey. That’s an ambitious move. But what of the other £160m?

‘Manchester City’s £15m-rated winger Patrick Roberts, who is currently on loan at La Liga’s Girona, could also be on his hitlist.’

That seems like a case of adding two and two together after their time at Celtic. But hey, we’ll go with it: that’s £55m.

‘There will be other arrivals too and Jamie Vardy is likely to receive support in attacking if Rodgers finds the right striker.’

That got awful vague awful quickly. You’d hope Callum Wilson would be considered ‘the right striker’.

‘Celtic left-back Kieran Tierney, 21, also has admirers in the Premier League, with 22-year-old Foxes defender Chilwell attracting interest from Manchester City.’

Kieran Tierney might not cost £145m.

The newspaper edition of this story seems like pretty harmless fluff. The online version suggests otherwise.

‘The Foxes boss, 46, is expected get up to £200million over his three-year contract at the King Power.’

So the ‘£200m treasure chest’ is for the entirety of his contract, not just this summer? The newspaper story weirdly fails to make that clear.

Leicester have spent £183.6m in the past 18 months. Forgive Mediawatch for being a little underwhelmed at the prospect of a £200m ‘treasure chest’ over the course of three bloody seasons.

 

Shock of the day

 

Recommended reading of the day
Ben Fisher talks to David Hockaday.

Nick Ames on Kepa, Maurizio Sarri ad Chelsea.

 

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