Now you really have no excuse not to send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Unless you work for the NHS or Sports f*cking Direct…
How and where to conclude the season
How about finishing the premier league season in…..China?
It seems it is around 6 weeks ahead of the UK on the coronavirus curve and the situation is more or less under control. It is likely to be the first place in the world where people will be allowed to attend sporting events again. So this would have the advantage of avoiding games behind closed doors, which I think we can agree is weird and unsatisfying for TV viewers, and would generate gate revenue for clubs in financial hardship. Similarly, games might be played in South Korea or Taiwan.
Of course this suggestion is half joking as I am sure it is unfeasible for many reasons, but I wouldn’t be surprised if clubs ended up going to Asia for “pre-season training” before the re-start so they can train properly together and get a head start over other teams. At the moment it feels like when the safety car is out in a F1 race, in which smart teams can still use the situation to their advantage.
Ones who got away XI
On a youtube rabbit hole where I across Michael Essien’s insane goal against Arsenal in 2006. I really he wanted him at United. He would have been a God at Old Trafford with his beautiful blend of elite level skill and problems with emotional control.
Obviously, like all fans, I’ve watched quite a few players I’d have loved at my club, get linked to it only to sign for someone else. I jotted a few of them down to see if I could make an XI. I couldn’t think of a right back so I’ve stuck Oxelaide-Chamberlain in there because I wanted him when he was at Southampton and f*ck it, nothing matters anyways.
GK; Manuel Neuer
LB; Jordi Alba
CB; Sergio Ramos
Would be interested to see similar XIs from fans of Arsenil and Liverpool.
Different nationalities XI
I like the thinking behind the mail by Lee, LFC yesterday….but couldn’t come up with any difficult ones myself (I’m guessing you had a barrage of mails saying Seaman > Toure > Firmino). Instead I’m going to shamelessly steal a game from planetfootball, where you pick an 11 of different nationalities to play for your club, also know as “be careful with the Englishman”.
Here’s the Newcastle United edition:
GK: Shay Given (Ireland)
LB: Aaron Hughes (Northern Ireland)
CB: Phillipe Albert (Belgium)
CB: Fabricio Coloccini (Argentina)
RB: Darryl Janmaat (Netherlands)
LM: David Ginola (France)
CM: Gary Speed (Wales)
CM: Temuri Ketsbaia (Georgia)
RM: Nolberto Solano (Peru)
ST: Alan Shearer (England)
ST: Faustino Asprilla (Colombia)
It’s actually pretty difficult to make a decent team with sacrifices going on all over the pitch, especially right back where I just couldn’t think of anyone. Overall it’s a team with plenty of attacking swagger and Shay Given preparing for a busy afternoon glued to his line.
Kevin (for expert mode add a manager as well), Nottingham
…Oh that was quite fun actually. Here’s a slightly better XI, this one from Arsenal in a 4-3-3 formation:
GK: Petr Cech (Czech Republic)
LB: Ashley Cole (England)
CB: Per Mertesacker (Germany)
CB: Kolo Toure (Ivory Coast)
RB: Lauren (Cameroon)
CM: Gilberto Silva (Brazil)
CM: Patrick Vieira (France)
CM: Cesc Fabregas (Spain)
LF: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Gabon)
CF: Dennis Bergkamp (Netherlands)
RF: Freddie Ljungberg (Sweden)
It was pretty painful leaving out Thierry Henry and Tony Adams and the central defence isn’t ideal, otherwise that’s a damn fine team. Who can beat that?
Players only you rate
Regarding the recent conversation about players nobody rated except you, I have a good candidate here: Kevin Mirallas. And I say this as a Liverpool fan!
Back when Mirallas was playing for the toffees, I used to rave about him and I was sure he was going to go on to bigger things. Nobody-not even Everton fans- seemed to think he was anything other than average or occasionally good but I always thought he was fantastic right up until the moment he left Everton. When he had a dip in form, I would make excuses and tell people that they needed to give him time and I was confused about why he was so underappreciated. Looking back now, I’m really not sure why I thought he was so much better than anyone else thought he was.
PS: Confession time- I don’t actually hate Everton but that’s a story for another email
“But still, that only takes him half-way to the total claimed by one current Premier League manager who really doesn’t like to go on about it…”
I don’t know how many Solskjaer interview interviews you guys have seen but you realise that you “go on about it” more than he does, right? It’s almost like since Solskjaer got the playmaker he’s needed all season, since we started turning draws into wins, since we went unbeaten for 10 games, since we beat City (again)… you’ve run out of ammo for Ole. Awkward.
Oh, and while I’m here, not naming Ole in your Five Tacticians of the Premier League Season? Just how committed to your agenda are you guys? Is it a conscious effort or just an amusing blind-spot? I understand that despite your love-in with Klopp (best PM, really? I’d rather keep the one we’ve got and that’s saying something) that United will still garner you most clicks… and you know this. Why not appreciate the man who you’ve spent all season lambasting as he quietly goes about rebuilding the world’s biggest football club? You might get even *more* cIicks. I think Solskjaer’s due a little respect in ABU365 Towers.
William Douglas Foster, Stretford
From Seaman to Firmino in 427 replies
I like Lee’s game, although his trivia was a little simple.
One player played with both. Kolo Toure. Played with Seaman at Arsenal and then with Firmino at Liverpool.
How about this one, Tony Adams and Angel Di Maria?
Good luck everyone
…David Seaman to Roberto Firmino via 2 players.
1. David Seaman to Gareth Barry (England team in 2000).
2. Gareth Barry to James Milner (played together at Villa and Man City).
3. James Milner to Roberto Firmino (currently playing together at Liverpool).
How about players to link Peter Schmeichel to Kasper Schmeichel?
This could go on for a while…
David Williams (BHAFC)
…Seaman played with Gilberto at Arsenal.
Gilberto was picked with Heurelho Gomes for Brazil’s 2010 World Cup.
Gomes and Firmino were both at Hoffenheim.
Where’s my prize?
…Nice idea from Lee (sorry to force the fun, but we need to stay sane in these weird times), LFC.
His rules are a little vague though. For two players to be equivalent to “co-stars” in movies, presumably they have to have played at least one game of competitive professional football (i.e. no testimonials/friendles/charity games) on the same team.
If that’s the case then you have Firmino –> Kolo Toure –> Seaman.
That’s assuming it’s club only. If internationals are also included (making it even easier) then Steven Gerrard works too.
David Lillis, Dublin
Where are they now?
Seeing the mailbox headline ‘a love letter to Alan Smith’ immediately cast my mind back to that Leeds fan who regularly wrote in a few years ago declaring her love for the aforementioned potty-mouthed striker-cum-midfielder, Georgina Jane I think her name was. Are you still around Georgina? Are you happy with Bielsa’s Leeds?
Anyway, this made me think of previous regular contributors who seemed to have fallen off the map? Do you want to say hello? Are there any previous mailbox contributors the rest of us would like to hear from again or perhaps were glad to see the back of? (I cant see that in the future we will look back upon the prolific ness of Ed Quoth with any great fondness).
Take care, peeps
Rob (not a mailbox regular) da Shrimper
Let’s move on
I am not from Liverpool , do not live in Liverpool but have spent some time in the city having held a season ticket for 5 years between 1990-95 , before being forced to relinquish it through work in the Far East. I have numerous friends , both red and blue who live in and around the city and whilst not pretending that I fully appreciate the social fabric of the area I am fully aware of the policies that successive governments have initiated that have impacted Liverpool as a city in detriment to other areas having had conversations with the afore mentioned friends.
However the point of my mail re Red Nev was to emphasize the fact that he was calling out the PM , personally. Government is not a singular person , it is a body of people voted for and appointed inherently by the public. Your Brexit point is frankly not relevant in this context. Boris along with 52% of the population voted for Brexit , it is his parliamentary duty to enact the will of the people. Perhaps you would like to call out the other 25 odd other million people who voted to leave. ( I voted to stay for what it’s worth as living in Central Europe) perhaps makes me as qualified as yourself who clearly lives in Liverpool to comment on European benefits and issues.
As regards Boris response , I clearly said it had been muddled and some decisions were going to be proven wrong. However today we do not have proof that they are wrong just subjection.Everyone is going to be wrong in this scenario because it is unprecedented and therefore a fluid and ever changing situation. Your response seems to echo the Piers Morgan school of journalism , ie im right and everybody else can do one…well no actually I’m entitled to my opinion as much as you are.
Lastly , sitting in my warm front room in Switzerland in my low tax environment. Seriously mate you need to check your story before writing utter tosh.
For your information Switzerland has a scale income taxation policy. ie the more you earn the more you pay. This is different to the UK as it is also determined by your status. Ie if your a single mum earning say 20,000 a year you will pay no tax. But if your a single guy earning 20,000 you will pay say 10 pct. The top rate of tax here is around 45 % at canton level that’s before you pay federal taxes. In addition to that you have this little thing called wealth tax, paid at canton and municipal level which here in Geneva is 1% annually on your net worth.
Therefore I can tell you Rafa factually that taxes here for the more wealthy in society are significantly higher than the UK , as they should be. This allows for a higher rate of income to be paid to people in more menial but no less valued jobs.
So from my ivory , expensive , highly taxed and warm tower .. I will criticize the Neviller as and when I see fit ,as Carragher did when he asked him have you shut your hotels and the answer was no not yet… Leadership … do as I say not as I do…. hypocrisy.
DL , LFC ( I just wanted him to talk about football ) Geneva
What’s so great about…
Way back around 2004/2005 I started reading Football 365, and there was a great little feature to fill the void that was pre-season.
I can’t remember what it was called, but essentially readers were given a few topics and asked to write in and tell us what they loved about them.
Some of the responses were genuinely moving, and gave me a new appreciation of overlooked players/teams/tournaments.
Anyway. I’m sat at a makeshift desk, void of social contact, so I thought I’d chuck a few subjects up and ask your readers to tell us, what’s so great about…
Match of the day
Feel free to suggest your own.
Ben (off for a government-sanctioned walk) WHUFC
The F365 Show is on hiatus until the football returns. Subscribe now ready for its glorious comeback. In the meantime, listen to the latest episode of Planet Football’s 2000s podcast, The Broken Metatarsal.