Thoughts and prayers from Liverpool for Man Utd’s defensive crisis…

Date published: Friday 14th May 2021 9:11 - Editor F365

Keep those lovely mails coming to…


Missing Maguire
Plenty of shots of Maguire looking a bit miserable but commentary incredibly lazy to say this is all down to him being missing.

First goal was Pogba and his magnificent ability to be shite in the air at 8ft tall. Second pinball but Wan Bissaka gormless in the box.Third goal both f*cking Fred and Shaw give the ball away in our final third (within 5 seconds of each other) and the keeper is wank. As always.
Fourth, well can’t be arsed with Pogba or Matic but not Lindelof/Bailly’s fault and we were chasing it.

So many examples this season that f*cking Fred, McTominay and Pogba cannot be trusted with the ball in our own half. Or to defend.


Maguire made no difference in the cup vs Leicester when f*cking Fred produced a carbon copy of tonight’s f*cking Fred moment.

F*cking Fred.
Simon MUFC

…United lost two games this week, which is the more laughable? Leicester squeaked a win against the “B” team, Liverpool were gifted a lifeline by the “AHA” team. Could Fred/McTominay?Lindelof have been worse. Fred tried to excel himself on every occasion giving the ball away, McTominay is Frankenstein’s monster, Lindelof is a bad joke. Hilariously Neville tried to pin it all on Maguire’s abscence, he is as limited a player as there is, which goes to show what the rest of them are like. Shaw useless, Rashford sad, Henderson the answer? Please
, the relegation standard goalkeeper showed his level, deGea kept utd in the Europa League, Henderson would have ended it. Greenwood made a game of it for a while, but the sight of mediocre scousers romping past fredtominay in midfield was illustrative of where the problems are. Emery is a clever man, he will play deep defence and press fredtominaylindelof every minute and they will cave, bruno will whinge and once again it will be time to thank ole and send him on his way, this team goes nowhere with him and the three stooges he loves.

16 Conclusions: Man Utd 2-4 Liverpool

…My thoughts & prayers are with Manchester United during this difficult defensive crisis

…Go on United say it, say you needed Slabhead
Wik, Pretoria, (Bobby just loves a big game doesn’t he), Pretoria


…For the people who complain that they lost Maguire, so that’s why they lost, Nigerians will understand what I have to say to you – if you don’t vamos, the kain slap we I go take wash your face baa..

Phillips and Williams were liverpool’s CBs, have you no shame! Some weeks ago when Ole named the line-up against Liverpool, Maguire was going to play 90 minutes, you didn’t let him. Your players were full of confidence then after the Roma first leg, they badly wanted to play, YOU DIDN’T LET THEM!!!!! You allowed liverpool to take 17 shots with an xG of over 3, Firminho of all people scored a brace against you. You don’t even seem to know what every other team now knows about liverpool’s RB, granted, you took 18 shots yourself, but for an xG of just over 1.8, Liverpool had 8 shots on target to the 3 you managed, you may not have had time on the training ground but, God, I don’t think I have heard of a worst team on set pieces (not only defending them, you can’t attack them as well) not having time on the training ground is no excuse for lack of common sense in your job as a professional! Credit to Liverpool, they may not have outplayed man utd, but they showed once more why they were defending champions at the start of the week, they may not have won the game convincingly, if man utd go and by any dm and stick him instead of Fred and get their Captain back, they may have won in an alternate reality, but liverpool fans need not worry, the Glazers will buy a rw and a cb, do not be mistaken, not the first choice of the manager, ask Van Gaal what he got, they will also renew Jones, Matic and Mata’s contract. Now liverpool only have to go through the formality of winning their remaining three games, and just try not win them and see..

As for the manager, there is really nothing more to say, I have always supported him because I like him but the comical way his team are defending set pieces is beyond baffling, he says he has never hidden that he has coaches he delegates to do the work on the training ground which admittedly, they have not had much time to do, but who is even in charge of it then? Someone tells me it is the goalkeeping coach, I don’t even know who he is but he is clearly incompetent, Henderson now has question marks over him, De gea? Is there anything to add? And do you need to have time on the training ground practicing before you know that Soyuncu should at least be challenged for a header? But who appointed this goalkeeping coach? Ole. Who lets him take charge of the set piece training? Ole. So who should be held responsible? I don’t think I need to answer. Just check out which team has the best record at defending set-pieces this season and you will know why they are where they are and check your record and you will know 0.3 percent of why you are where you are, the other 99.7, *Fred *Glazers *Glazers again *Glazers again *probably Ole *CB *DM *A thousand other things. The good news is you will still finish second, but thank Arsenal for that. Also, a midfield of Mata, Matic and Van de Beek comprises of two PL winners and a CL semi finalist, the fact that United managed to convince you that that second team SHOULD lose to leicester places them in the winners section for me.

Falling standards
It really says a lot about how poor the standard of the league has been for the most part that Man Utd are the second best team in the country. It says even more about how poor the league is that Liverpool are somehow in the race for the top 4 at all given the 2021 form we have displayed. Maybe it’s a reflection that 2 years of non stop Covid-ball has massively decreased the overall quality of football because there’s a good chance that English teams will win both European competitions this year. Next season the top teams with the fewest players involved at the Euros are going to have a chance of doing well given that some players will essentially end up playing 3 seasons in a row with zero rest. That or Man City will buy another £100m of squad players and walk the league again.

Some of the goals tonight were brilliant simply because it’s rare to see such a clusterf**k of mistakes in professional football at this standard. The Jota goal is just hilariously bad defending and the keepers position for Salah’s goal is so poor that even I would’ve finished that chance. If Pogba and Nat Phillips could have swapped their levels of commitment for the two goals they were involved in, such that Nat didn’t try to play the ball and Pogba did try to win the header, then there would’ve been two fewer goals and slightly less fun overall.

Liverpool are swinging between dreadful and moderately above average. They also totally shat the bed after Rashford scored and until we got fortunate to break away it felt like an equaliser was coming. Trent is good at football again – thanks to the media for deciding it was time to swing that narrative the other way. Referees again proved they literally don’t understand football; that VAR call was an absolute shocker and Taylor is bloody lucky it isn’t a major talking point.
Minty, LFC


Klopp’s genius
First time poster here! Liverpool fan whose found that a lot of the punditry I’ve seen critiquing Klopp this season has focused on his moving fabhino from the midfield into defense. Is this result not the ultimate rebuke? In a season ravaged by injury we’ve just witnessed a center back pairing of Nat Phillips and Rhys Williams earn the first victory in the league at Old Trafford for 10 years. Fabinho had to move back, in order to shepherd the young defenders through their maiden appearances at the highest level. Their success here is a testament to klopp’s man management and his ability to focus on the “big picture” while punditry and fans live game to game. If we win top 4 in what has been a freakish and injury-hit season then it’ll be down to klopp’s consistent ability to maintain his composure and develop players at the highest level. I mean what a performance!


A familiar theme
Salah scoring 90th minute solo goals to send Kopites in unmitigated frenzy against them Mancs is becoming a fascinating sub-plot to the storied Utd-Liverpool rivalry… notably exception is Allison didn’t run the whole pitch to embrace him this time!
Raúl H. García (4-2 is the silverlining for a God-awful season) LFC 1892-YNWA


Bring on the sanctions
I just wanted to say something that may not be obvious to those arguing about punishments for United and the behaviour of the protestors. Do you realise that plenty of the protestors want united to be punished?

I wasn’t there, but the point of the protest was to demonstrate to the Glazers that the fans can damage them – every other form of polite action has been taken to no effect, and the only way to hurt the glazers is to hurt United. It’s something people have been loath to do over the years, for obvious reasons, but it’s a consequence that many are happy to suffer if it means that the glazers rethink their position.

Personally, I’d be delighted to see united sanctioned if it meant it would hurt the Glazers. Short-term pain, but long term gain…
Dan Wardle (MUFC since 1983)

…Let’s try again for Oliver‘s benefit.

To dissuade disgruntled fans who are trying to prevent fixtures being fulfilled and cause deliberate damage to a club by putting in place a rule that says the club will definitely get punished through a points deduction is absolutely bonkers.

It actively encourages the behaviour by doubling the reward for a successful break-in!

Again, what the hell do you expect United to do? Form a militia? Get a tank to patrol the route from the stadium to the ground? Dispatch Thunderbird 3 from underneath the training pitch at Carrington?

You say it’s a rule about controlling fans, but I’d suggest that the club’s stance would be that anyone who would break into the stadium isn’t a “fan” at all, but rather part of a mob trying to harm the club. Mobs are difficult to control and, last I checked, were the job of the police to manage. They didn’t stop the US capitol riot from happening, the UK government couldn’t stop the Tottenham riots, so to suggest putting an absolute obligation on a football club that will result in a punishment to meet standards that governments, with honest-to-goodness armies, can’t is churlish.

Oliver personally didn’t say Liverpool should get three points, no, but alot of Liverpool fans did. Oliver says he’s not being partisan as a Liverpool fan. Well, I don’t believe that. But even if he wasn’t, it’s still a bad idea…

If the best argument in favour of a club getting a points deduction for having their ground broken into is citing the 2011 case of FC Scion having a points deduction for (thanks Google) fielding six ineligible players players signed while under a transfer embargo, I’m at a loss… FC Scion got a points deduction for cheating at football, so let’s deduct points from clubs for being victims of crime.

On the suggestion of a top ten top flight points deduction article, F365 please don’t put your unpaid intern to work researching that, Oliver’s probably already demonstrated how much of a barrell scraping exercise it would be!

Andy (MUFC)
P.s I don’t want the above to suggest I’m against the protestors’ cause, merely that I think, from the league’s perspective it would be a bad idea to punish a club.

Cheeky tips Liverpool full-back to score at 6/1 and more…

A quarter of a century ago
On December 21st 1996, Middlesbrough were due to play Blackburn Rovers in the Premier League. Boro, with a small squad that was already struggling with injuries, were then hit by a virus and were unable to field a team. The game was postponed and rearranged, but in addition Middlesbrough were docked 3 points. This deduction ultimately ended up costing Boro their place in the Premier League, finishing on 39 points, 2 points behind Coventry and Southampton. This led to star players such as Juninho and Ravanelli leaving the club. And make no mistake, this was a quality side Boro had back then. Relegation aside, they also reached 3 cup finals in 2 years, one from the First Division, achieved without the Little Fella and the White Feather.

So there is precedent here. Why did Middlesbrough get points deducted but Manchester United are able to carry on regardless? Is this the infamous big club bias in action? Have the FA simply forgotten? I know it would count for nothing this season, so I would suggest that Man Utd should start next season on -3 points.
Harry, (Why don’t you get nicknames like that any more?) THFC


…Just read that Thomas Tuchel bemoans having to make so many changes on Wednesday night? And, if course, they lost.
Has anyone hold Trevor Sinclair?
The Don


Replacing Jose
In reply to the question from James, Galway on why Gasperini has not been linked with the spurs job. I think it was reported that Gasperini had been sounded out by Tottenham to replace Jose pretty early on but he turned them down straight away, as he is waiting to see what happens with Pirlo’s future at Juve and doesn’t fancy swapping Italy for England anyway. Replacing Jose is turning out to be a lot trickier than Levy expected it to be, Levy seems to have run down a list of potential candidates getting rebuffed each time Nagelsman, Jesse Marsch, Erik ten Hag, Gasperini all saying no leaves a shortage of truely top quality options. In an ideal world spurs would take advantage of the financial situation at Inter to get Conte on board but that also completley ignores the financial situation at spurs which is hardly ideal mid pandemic. That would leave spurs with options like Allegri, Sarri, Hasenhuttl, Graham Potter and an argument can be made for each but the truth is none of them are really who Levy wanted and now he has a problem on his hands. The links to Scott Parker should probably be avoided, spurs need this appointment to go well they can’t afford to gamble on someone as inexperienced as Parker right now, who ever it is ends up in the Tottenham job has a difficult job on their hands especially if it’s a Harry Kane-less Tottenham which is a distinct possibility.
Aaron CFC Ireland.


Minging decision
After review, how is that not a straight red for Tyrone Mings? How? Nowhere near the ball and serious foul play with his studs into DCL. You’d think the VAR referee would have told Martin Atkinson that he’s missed it and to issue the red. He doesn’t. Worse? He doesn’t even give him a yellow.

I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, it isn’t VAR that is the problem, it’s the inconsistent application of the rules by the referees on the pitch and running VAR. That would have been a red card in any other match this season. Not this one though. What a joke.
TX Bill (it’s getting boring now) EFC


Title deciders
Loved the article, and frankly as a Manchester United fan whose first memory of a genuine title race (i.e. truly understanding what was happening rather than it just seeming like United won every week) was 1994-95, which was a classic “last day thrills and spills” title decider, I have been historically very happy to see a nice boring coronation (especially 2012, with a monumental hangover). Damn you Ludek. Damn you Sergio.

Special mention that if I recall correctly, the atmosphere when Chelsea spanking us 3-0 in 2006 was somewhat ruined because it was the day Rooney went off with a broken foot and even the home fans were worried. Obviously, by this point I was a University student who had missed the game to, erm, study, so this may have been apocryphal.

Also, that Leeds/Arsenal 3-2 was a brilliant game. I think it followed the game where Jay-Jay Okocha had Arsenal on toast, and a 2-2 draw at Highbury – proper title race that one.
Jonny, MUFC

Manchester City players celebrate

They never left
Given Pete, Cape Cod, had no one respond to his brother’s email, I thought I would help him out with one. When will people, who clearly don’t know enough about the game, stop saying ‘let the teams back into their domestic leagues’?

First, they never ‘left’ those leagues. The Super League was intended to displace the Champion’s League. In reality a bigger threat to UEFA than their domestic leagues, in that it would completely devalue the competition that brings in the most revenue for UEFA. The question for the EPL was what impact would it have on broadcast revenues where the competition to make the top four places and win may be devalued if the 6 teams were not going to be playing in the CL. As it is, there is less competition from broadcasters for the EPL games this year with BT backing out. The next time it goes for auction, it may be for less regardless of what happens. Perhaps the 6 teams saw that.

Second, who decides who should be in the EPL in the first place? The EPL is actually a private company run like a private club with 20 members. The current 20 EPL teams. It’s not some separate body, like the FA or UEFA, running it. Five of the six, have been continuous members since inception – only Man City have not been. There have been 49 teams in the EPL at one point but only 21 with 10 or more seasons – 3 of whom we are likely not going to see back for a whole. The point is, the most stable part of the EPL is made up of about 10 clubs – 6 of whom are the ones people are proposing ‘not letting back in.’ The rules state a two-thirds majority or 14 members are needed to vote on any changes. So it is possible ALL the other clubs could vote the 6 out…but would be pretty weird when you consider that several clubs are only in it for one season.

And that might be cutting their throat to spite their face, so to speak. The 6 are, in fact, the main draw card for the EPL. So those broadcasters who pay the huge amount that makes the EPL more lucrative than any other football league are doing so as much, if not more, on the backs of those top teams. It would be fair to say that there is an implied competitiveness to the EPL (no one wants to play at Stoke on a cold winter midweek…) but it is the top teams who draw the most attention, have games separated from the pack on a weekend – are forced to play early or very late, etc – all because they get the most eyeballs. So not ‘allowing those teams back’ would not only crush the EPL as a whole, but then force what had not happened to happen. At that point, why not form a separate league, breakaway from the EPL/EFL? Or better still, go to the EFL and propose a new structure with the EFL? Add, say 10 teams from the Championship to form a new super EPL?

But let’s circle back. While the EPL negotiates along with the other ECA clubs for UEFA positioning in their European competitions, those competitions are separate from the EPL. It adds extra spice to a season when a leader runs away with the league, wondering who may get into those other ‘European’ positions, but there are no EPL gongs or awards for doing so. They have NOTHING to do with the EPL. The winner is still the EPL winner. The three bottom clubs go down. That is all the EPL mandates and none of that was being changed as part of the Super League proposal. Sure, there was the possible future impact of what it would mean for the CL, etc.

Do I think it was a good idea, did I like it? Not sure. I don’t particularly like UEFA or FIFA so anything that puts one over them is good. However, just like with things like the World Cup, when you hardly saw the teams and players, it seemed exotic and far more interesting than today, where we see the players every week. So while a ‘Super League’ would have interest to start out with games between clubs from different countries on a regular, competitive basis, that uniqueness would quickly wane. When interest wane’s like that, it is when we fall back on history and tradition to provide focus and detail and draw out the spectacle into something much bigger than it really us.
Paul McDevitt


They’re not really here
Im 39 years old, and I’ve been going to games since I was 8.

Remember that Nick Hornby line in Fever Pitch ? That when you think of a team, you can instantly remember every friend/acquaintance/colleague who supports them ?

I’m drawing a total blank with City. I’ve never met a fan.

Anyone else ?


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