Send more thoughts on Arsenal, Mesut Ozil and more decisions the greater public know absolutely nothing about to email@example.com
Can’t say I’m surprised that Ozil was one of the Arsenal players to reject a pay cut. He has shown nothing but greed over the past 2 & half years. I thinks it’s funny that if a player leaves a club for a lot more money elsewhere they’re called greedy and a mercenary, yet if they run down their contract, demand treble their current wages and destroy a clubs wage structure they’re called loyal by their namesake followers. (Pretty sure you guys could do a top 10 on this: Ozil, Gerrard, Rooney, Toure…)
The fact that he and his agent have signalled that Ozil will 100% finish his contract at Arsenal on many occasions shows that they know just how lucky they were to get it.
Does anyone know if there’s anything stopping Arsenal putting Ozil on furlough (max 2.5k a month rather than 1.4m) as he’s not currently working?
G (Yes he gives money to charity, no that doesn’t stop him from pocketing millions upon millions every year) AFC
Reach for the Sky
Interesting Jamie Carragher wading in on the Ozil wage reduction debate so early. It’s a massive topic and much debate to be had, but I just wanted to know have the Sky Sports presenters taken a wage deduction?
I’ve not read anything with regards the staff at Sky sports and I mean all staff, from top to bottom, and whether they have put anyone onto the Furlough scheme or asked anyone to take a reduction in wages? 90% of the company I work for have been furloughed and although I’m one of the lucky ones to retain my employment, for the time being, I personally have had my income reduced by about 50%, so it would be interesting to know if Sky Sports have been forced to do the same with their workforce and whether Jamie, Neville, Souness, etal have had their income affected at all.
Because if they haven’t then I’m not sure they’re in a position to really be commenting on other companies processes and staff.
Under the influence
I always find these lists quite difficult to quantify, they are, after all, an opinion.
That said, placing Zola on the list ahead of Klinsmann is an oversight. Klinsmann’s arrival was met with the kind of ‘what the fuck’ reaction that I can only remember being exceeded by Ravanelli joining ‘Boro, only Klinsmann was a better, more well know, far more despised player who managed to create a path to the PL that seemed not to exist prior to his arrival.
That he won the player of the year, finished the campaign with 29 goals, and drove a beaten up VW would surely position his influence far greater than Zola’s and possibly Bergkamp’s too (it’s worth noting both Zola and Bergkamp are easily in the top ten for imports and possibly top ten of all PL players).
But it’s only an opinion x
you seem to be tiring of mails on Newcastle’s ownership – maybe your readers are tired of the debate. That’s understandable. The debate has mostly been Newcastle fans defensively pointing fingers and crying “they can do it sowhy can’t we”?
But do allow me to reply to today’s message from Mark, Man City fan:
“In response to a flurry of similar mails last year about City’s owners I speculated what, for instance, the reaction of the vast majority of Everton fans would’ve been had Sheikh Mansour bought their club in 2008 instead of City? With the prospect of finally coming out of the shadow of their world-famous neighbours from the same city? Because I’m absolutely convinced they’d have been over the moon, just as Newcastle fans are now.”
Yes, I’d have been delighted if a Sheikh Mansour had bought Everton and pumped £1 billion into my club. I’d have loved for Everton to field the world class talent City has had over the last decade.
But that’s not the point. I do not begrudge City fans for enjoying their wins. I’m not putting asterisks on Chelsea’s post-2003 wins. I don’t censor Newcastle fans for feeling joy in this.
I would however like that English football clubs, including my own, are not owned by corrupt moguls or murderous regimes. Dear Mark, do enjoy Aguero and De Bruyne and the like. You’re entitled to all the joy those players bring you.
City belongs to you, and Newcastle belongs to its fans. Not to the “owners”. The criticism of these takeovers is aimed at them; not you.
Mark also writes:
“I don’t come on here to read about politics or religion but nor do I deny either their existence or validity. Equally, like every other football fan, I have b*gger all say in who gets to buy my beloved club. I simply say that I cannot worry over what I cannot change.”
That’s the thing right here: you should have a say. It doesn’t have to be like this. English clubs being owned by Bond villains is not a necessity. I don’t object to City or Newcastle or Chelsea or Everton having crooks as owners; I object to any club having crooks as owners. It doesn’t have to be like this. It is not like this in other countries.
Keep on supporting City or Newcastle or Everton or whatever, but do worry about this. It can be changed.
This is a message of support and encouragement to all of those Newcastle fans contemplating the pros (Plenty) and cons (Negligible) of an impending takeover.
Firstly, when I first attended a Man City game in 1981, I wasn’t particularly interested in who owned the club. Similarly when I started going regularly in late 80’s and cemented my love of the club, who the owner was or whether the wages of Paul Stewart, David White or Paul Lake had been paid for using money that had crossed the turnstiles years before was of no consequence.
It was the experience with fans/mates/trips out etc and the hope that one day we’d compete and have a shot at glory or a trip to Wembley I was interested in.
My first recollection of owners ever being important in football was when a guy called Michael Knighton promised to bring a lot of investment into Old Trafford, and how excited the Old Trafford patrons got about it at the time. Oh how they cheered when he did keepy-ups in front of the Stretford end. An owner with money to invest and football skills. What’s not to like?
Funnily enough, I don’t ever remember my united supporting mates at the time worrying about the source of that money, and the fact that it was going to be considered outside investment. I guess their moral outrage at ‘inorganic’ investment at the time was tempered by the thought they might finally buy some big players to compete with Liverpool and have a shot at winning the league after over 20 years. Unfortunately it fell through for them.
Unperturbed, Utd went for broke and gave Alex Ferguson a ton of money to spend (far more than would be allowed under current FFP rules), and he went out and broke transfer record after record hoovering up the best talent. How romantic and fair it all was.
Then Sky came along, and the successful clubs of the time got lucky by being in the right place at the right time (Leeds maybe not so much), and monopolized on that luck by brokering TV deals that made the rich get richer, and as a result buying all the best players from any club that dared to produce one. The ‘hope that one day we’d compete’ part of my equation got removed as a result.
(Those ‘monopolized’ deals would later be described as ‘organic sources of income’ in FFP.)
If NUFC’s takeover goes through, and you start to buy world class players (not just player that United, Liverpool, Arsenal etc don’t want) and start competing for top 4 places, titles, trophies etc, you’ll be berated for your owners and sources of income, and how unfair it all is…and you won’t need many guesses as to which 3 clubs fans find it most unfair. Remember which clubs are the clubs that lobbied hardest for the roll out of FFP to ‘guard’ against investment unless ‘organic’. They’ve part succeeded of course. You won’t be able to just go out and buy anyone you want for 200 Million, as FFP has put the brakes on that, but over time you should be able to build it up all the while United, Liverpool etc are looking at the 200M players, as they’re allowed to under FFP, as that’s what Fair looks like.
In short, you now have a shot at glory, to enjoy with your mates and fellow supporters. The only people really begrudging it, are the ones who’ve had their shot, whose clubs were instrumental in changing the rules to preserve their place as the only viable contenders, and who now use non compliance with the changed rules as some sort of moral stick to decry and diminish your achievements, which is a poorly disguised bemoaning of the fact they’re not winning as much as they used to when all was ‘fair’ in the world.
Yaya at Wembley (against Utd and Stoke)
Kompany header against Utd
All as a result of outside investment, and much in the same ways that United, Liverpool, Arsenal fans etc didn’t care one iota about their history, where the money was coming from when they were winning things, it never entered my head as I celebrated those achievements with family, mates and fellow supporters and it shouldn’t enter yours.
Enjoy it, and just laugh at those righteous supporters. In most cases they are unknowingly hypocritical of their history and sources of fundings and ‘benefactors’ (how for example previous utd owners had invested their own money to stop them going bankrupt…twice). If FFP had been around forever, they wouldn’t have been anywhere near where they were when they won the Sky jackpot.
I sincerely hope to see City V Newcastle battling it out for a trophy at some point, and will revel in the salty tears of the United, Liverpool and Arsenal fans as a result.
Enjoy your time in the Sun.
Manc lad – Man City and loving it.
PS…keep an eye out on the next iteration of FFP post NUFC takeover. It will probably have something in it about restrictions on investment on any team north of the M62 for the long term good of football. It’s only Fair.
‘Tis the season
Mikey, CFC posed the question yesterday of everybody’s most memorable season. Rather than answer that question through the lens of tribal bias, I figured I’d try and pick out the most important season or definitive Premier League season. After toying with 94/95 (final 22 club season, first instance of a sugar daddy club), 2007/08 (the peak of English clubs in Europe) and 2015/16 (Leicester, simultaneous collapse of every top side, multiple “big club” relegations) I figured 2003/04 has left the largest legacy on the top division.
Arsenal claiming the title without defeat has left a marker that every title winning side seems to be measured against; many other sides have gained more points and scored more goals but the fact that we still debate which is more impressive shows the scale of their achievement. Just behind them Chelsea’s first season after the Abramovich buyout helped to break the Man Utd/Arsenal duopoly that had been in place the previous 6 years and arguably prevented the Premier League evolving in the same way as La Liga. With Man Utd and Liverpool rouding out the top four this season was the birth of The Big 4™ and helped to set in place a golden period for English clubs in Europe, paving the way for increasingly lucrative TV deals.
Further down the table this was the season Leeds United were relegated, giving us the term “doing a Leeds” and finally signalling the end of the local benefactor owner and the rise in unscrupulous businessmen as the true impact of overreaching was realised. This season was also the collective highpoint for British managers: Alan Curbishley, Sam Allardyce and Steve Bruce all had top half finishes, with other Premier League stalwarts such as Harry Redknapp, David Moyes and Mark Hughes also gaining varying degrees of respectability. There was even Steve McClaren winning a trophy, the last such time an English manager did so. Finally there was the birth of Wayne Rooney as a superstar, with his form this season leading to his explosion onto the global seen in the Euros and helping to fill the commercial void after David Beckham’s departure in the summer.
Can anyone else think of a season in the Premier League that did more to define the top division for the following years than 2004?
Kevin (I’m guessing 2019/20 will fill this role in 10 years time), Notts
Picking up on the ‘hated XI’s’ (though these fellas annoy me more than out else). Some of the reasons are very sketchy, in fact some of them have no real reason at all.
GK – Mark Crossley – Was playing for Fulham at SJP and Kluivert smashed a goal bound volley and he saved it with his massive head. We battered them and lost 1 – 4
LB – Rufus Brevett – I noticed that he used to slide about when it wasn’t really necessary….ball gone out for a throw – slide! strange behaviour!
CB – Gary Doherty – No real reason, just felt like he was a competition winner.
CB – Robeth Huth – I think it was the HUUUUUUTTTTTTTHHHHHH shout that went out when he lumped the ball out of play.
RB – Luke Ayling – He’s just a try hard, I cant be having them
LM – Andy Hinchcliffe – I’ve advanced him up the pitch for 2 reasons; the first, he annoyed me as a player and even more so as a commentator. The second, like Alan Pardew, I believe a team can not contain too many left backs.
CM – Tim Sherwood – total anus
CM – Lee Carsley – How can a grafter like him, take a set piece like that! It’s unacceptable.
RM – David Beckham – allowed himself to become a victim of beautiful shithousery at France 98, that type of behaviour I can simply never forgive.
CF – Geoff Horsfield – Ridiculous reason right here…. I really didn’t like his name, fucking Geoff as in Geoff!
CF – Paul Dickov – Again, he just tried way too hard to the point where I couldn’t watch any game he played in. There’s something about watching a little fella chasing big fellas about the pitch that gets to me.
RATT MITCHIE – NUFC – (Massive shout out to all the players who can not put their laces through a ball too, annoyance at the highest level)
More hate mail
Why I hate Messi
No doubt he is an absolutely brilliant footballer, possibly the greatest ever. Thing is, I just cannot stand him, and it is purely down to two things
1. The complete and utter media w*ank fest. Particularly during the time of Barca’s complete and utter dominance. The media loved a good w*ank when talking about them, and Messi was the page 3 girl.
2. Fanboys. Just give it a rest.
Gav, I cannot wait for live sport to start again (when it is safe to do so of course)
More of those World XIs
This world XI thing is harder than it looks. I thought I had a team of absolute world-beaters going back to my football inception of around 1990, all slotted together in a nice, balanced 4-1-4-1, then discovered, one of my full-backs had the cheek to be on loan at VFB Stuttgart in the mid noughties, eliminating my option of having Brazil legend Dunga in a holding midfield role. I also didn’t want the cliched choice of Oblak in nets.
I think the below now works, but the formation has a bit of the Garth Crooks about it in a kind of 5-3-1-1. But a team this good just doesn’t need anything as restrictive as tactics or formation.
GK Cech (Czech rep, Chmel Blšany, Sparta, Rennes, Chelsea, Arse)
RWB Lahm (Germany, Bayern Munich, VFB Stuttgart (loan))
LWB Maldini (Italy, Milan)
CB Van Dijk (Netherlands, Groningen, Celtic, Saints, Liverpool)
CB Godin (Uruguay, Cerro, Nacional, Villareal, Atletico Madrid, Inter)
CB Aldair (Brazil, Flamengo, Benfica, Roma, Genoa, others)
MF Silva (Spain, Valencia, Man city)
MF Gascoigne (England, Newcastle, Spurs, Lazio, Rangers, Middlesbrough, Everton, Burnley, others)
MF Giggs (Wales, Man Utd)
AM Zidane (France, Cannes, Bordeaux, Juventus, Real Madrid)
FW Messi (Argentina, Barca)
Can’t be bothered to think of a manager.
Chris Bridgeman, Kingston Upon Thames
We could not keep away from the camera for long so we made a Football365 Isolation Show. Watch it, subscribe and share until we get back in the studio/pub and produce something a little slicker…