Liverpool won 2-0 to move within striking distance of Leicester so what do The Sun do? Make it all about a pair of forwards who have won them the title, of course…
Liverpool beat Southampton on Saturday night to move within six points of fourth-placed Leicester City with a game in hand. By all measures, it was a good day for Liverpool, made better by defeats for Leicester, Tottenham and West Ham this weekend.
So how do The Sun report on this situation on Monday morning?
With 26 paragraphs of a 30-paragraph report about the dysfunctional relationship between Sadio Mane and Mo Salah, of course.
The pair combined on Saturday for Mane’s goal so this is how the ‘report’ begins:
‘THEY may both don the red of Liverpool but Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane’s bond is in anything but blood.
‘The attacking duo have never had the best relationship during their time at Anfield – their competitive natures and single-minded attitudes clashing on more than one occasion.’
A reminder: Liverpool won 2-0.
Another reminder: Salah and Mane have scored more combined Premier League goals in this sh*t-show of a season than every attacking duo bar Harry Kane and Son Heung-min. It doesn’t actually matter if they get on or not.
‘And this is not a one-off. Over the past two seasons – which included their Prem triumph – Salah and Mane have produced combined numbers of 66 goals and 29 assists in the league for Liverpool.
‘But during that time, they have linked up for a total of six Prem strikes.’
And there – in a nutshell – is the reason why this whole narrative is absolute bollocks. They have never been a ‘partnership’ in the sense of Son and Kane and it DOESN’T REALLY MATTER. The fact that Son and Kane ‘also talk to each other off it (the pitch)’ has won them exactly diddly-squat.
And right now, it’s simply not the story. Unless you work for The Sun. And that’s the truth.
Double blow job
Forgive us for perhaps being a little dense but when we read a headline like this…
‘Two new Liverpool injuries may leave Jurgen Klopp with major decision against Manchester United’
…we think that Liverpool might have two new injuries that may leave Jurgen Klopp with a major decision against Manchester United. Silly Mediawatch.
What we don’t think is that Liverpool could play exactly the same team as the one that beat Southampton on Saturday night because they have absolutely no new injuries. In fact, Liverpool could actually play a better team than the one that beat Southampton on Saturday night because the mildly injured Ozan Kabak might actually be back.
But still, the Liverpool Echo have hoovered up all those delicious clicks from worried Liverpool fans. It’s going to be a long three days.
The Art of Clickbait
Elsewhere on the Echo…
‘Mikel Arteta perfectly summed up the true difference between Ruben Dias and Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk’
Because how else would you best sum up the (true) difference between two excellent centre-halves but with quotes from Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta from September in which he never mentioned Ruben Dias (because that would have been weird)?
Calling out a favour
Crowbarring Liverpool and Manchester United into the same headline will be gold this week so well done Sports Mole for this one:
‘Jurgen Klopp: ‘Manchester United can do Liverpool a favour’
It’s so beautiful that it almost seems churlish to point out that Klopp never said anything of the sort.
LIVE and kicking
Obviously the easy way to crowbar the two biggest clubs in England into the same headline is to pretend you have a wealth of transfer gossip, and so we head towards the Express website:
‘Transfer news LIVE: Man Utd’s Kane swap plan, Salah to Chelsea, Liverpool, Arsenal updates’
Well, well. A ‘Kane swap plan’ sounds very exciting indeed. This is indeed exciting LIVE transfer news.
‘Manchester United are reportedly planning to offer some of their stars in a swap deal for Harry Kane this summer.’
‘Reportedly’, you say. So what is the origin of these reports? There is no mention on the live transfer blog but some light Googling later, we stumble upon their source.
The Express website. A trusted source for the Express website.
‘Manchester United’s interest in Tottenham striker Harry Kane is an open secret. The Red Devils have long admired the England international and, this summer, could finally bring him to Old Trafford. However, it may need to be via a swap deal.’
Well it ‘may’. And that’s definitely enough to constitute a ‘swap plan’ and drive traffic to a LIVE transfer blog.
But we are being unkind because Jack Otway does actually have reason to believe that Manchester United would have a swap plan in mind. He does have a source other than himself.
‘Spurs value their talisman at a massive £175million, a fee that would make him one of the most-expensive signings in football history.
‘But The Athletic reported last month that United could try to sign the England star by offering players in part-exchange to drive the price down.’
Last month. And it’s LIVE.
Keeping up appearances
Sorry, MailOnline but writing…
- ‘Sheffield United are investigating a shocking video on social media that appears to show their striker Oli McBurnie attacking a man and smashing his phone on the ground.’
- ‘The footage starts with someone calling out ‘Oli McBurnie’, before the man that is allegedly the Scotland international approaches and the phone falls to the ground while it is still recording.’
…absolutely does not cover your arses when your headline is ‘Sheffield United and Scotland star Oli McBurnie is filmed ‘punching and kicking a man and then stamping on his phone’ in ugly altercation at the side of a road’. It’s not the ‘punching and kicking’ that is the questionable part of that story – you can see that on the video – so if you’re not 100% sure it is McBurnie, you should be alleging the f*** out of that headline.