Mails: The myth of the United way

Date published: Thursday 7th January 2016 10:54

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The myth of the ‘United way’
I’m not sure whether Manc in SA was being sarcastic in his references to “The United Way”, but seriously can everyone give it a rest. Has anybody not affliated with Manchester United (be that supporters, ex players, or journalists with a slight bias towards them) ever actually referred to “The United Way” meaning dazzling, attacking football? I’ve never met, heard or read any. To put it another way, the Ferguson era Manchester United was a club version of West Germany rather than Brazil; capable of majestic attacking football, but it’s hardly their calling card.

For me and many others (well, the people on my desk at work) the actual Manchester United identity is/was playing until the final whistle. Scuffed winners in the 93rd minute on an away midweek match, winning 5-0 after drawing 0-0 at half time, that sort of thing. Could the wider Manchester United hive mind please just switch the meaning of your “way” from attacking, swashbuckling rogues to grizzled, never-say-die warriors? It sounds less whiny and entitled, it’s more accurate and (crucially) it’ll save me a concussion from banging my head against a wall every time I see that phrase.
Kevin (Pep’s going to Swansea), Nottingham


Why would Pochettino leave for United
This season has been a real revelation for a lot of us Spurs fans. We’re playing attractive football, with a young hungry team, mixed in with some fantastic English talent; we’ve been wanting a season like this for a very long time.

So my question is why on Earth would Pochettino want to leave, especially to United, when his team is looking like one of the most attractive teams in the league (at the minute), with a fancy new stadium in the pipeline and a relationship with Daniel Levy that suggests we won’t get another Saha/Nelson disaster but rather investment in players that Pochettino actually wants. Contrary to recent managerial appointments the feeling around the club and supporters is that we’re looking for the long term with a real shake-up of the club, shifting overpaid players, being able to defend(!) etc which Pochettino is at the heart of. Just see Lloris’ comments from the other day to really understand what effect Pochettino’s had at Spurs.

So can the united fans in the mailbox please give themselves a slap and realise that the Premier League has changed in recent times and they can’t just go around taking who and what they want, even the ‘smaller’ clubs are starting to fight the monopoly the so called ‘big teams’ have in English football (see Berahino and Stones). Hopefully Leicester follow suit and keep Vardy/Mahrez, win the league and put two fingers up to everyone else.
Albert THFC (If Mahrez is up for grabs though…)


Is De Bruyne any good?
I’d like to talk about Kevin. I was surprised to see his inclusion in so many “team of the season so far” recently. I thought it was just me and my confirmation bias (I predicted him to “do a Reyes”) but after watching him against Everton, I’m still to see him do anything of note against anyone vaguely good.

The City matches I’ve seen this season have mainly been the big ones, and he’s done the square root of FA in the derby, against Liverpool, Arsenal and now Everton in a semi. Following the game, I decided to have a look at his stats on Since netting a goal in defeat against both West Ham then Spurs in September, he’s not registered a goal or assist against anyone higher than 7th place in their respective league (Palace). Indeed, a quick look through his ratings reveal an awful lot of 6 point somethings with the odd 10 thrown in when City have pummelled a club from the North East by 4, 5 or 6, which is where most of his goals and assists seem to occur.

Now I’m not saying that he’s rubbish or anything, just that I’d expect a bit more, particularly in the big games, for the second highest fee in British history. I’m also surprised how little scrutiny he has come under when Sterling, who moved for less and is a few years his junior, seems to have received quite a bit of criticism.
Lewis, Busby Way (and it’s not anti City bias, I think Aguero is the best player in the league when fit)


Welsh Xavi? Welsh Whelan
Sorry, late the party here as I have finally just seen (Thanks to having a four month old) the “Assist” by Joe Allen on Tuesday night for Jordan Ibe.

I’m sorry but am I losing my mind with the lack of sleep (Probably actually), But Joe Allen clearly tries to shoot and missed the ball, hence the ball falls to Ibe.

Yes, the ball glances his foot, BECAUSE THE TRIED TO SHOOT. I have nothing against Allen whatsoever, as Daniel says in his piece, he is and ‘Ordinary Man, Ordinary Player,’, he’s just there, like a pair of wellies, handy if you somehow find yourself surrounded by puddles.

Like why in the shuddering f*%k would he even try to pass there, I don’t think the actual Xavi would try pass it in that position….seriously watch it again, I’m actually aghast that people think this was an assist……UGH!

Anyways, off to work for a break form the real work at home….(damn sterilizers)!
Lee, Dublin. THFC


Justice for Bobby
Hmmm. Martinez’s team beat City.

This is when you write a highly critical piece about one of the nicest managers in the league, who’s team when playing well play some of the best football in the league.

Would you rather Moyes’ functional play? I know what I’d prefer if I were a Toffee.

Remember why people enjoy football, F365. And remember who the good guys are.
Stu (in 2059 you’ll still have Rooney at the top your ladder ffs), London


But he’s the Spanish Rodgers…
I feel part of the problem with Everton now is obviously with their manager . The Spanish Rodgers. I mean all it takes is to look at the post match interviews of Martinez and Pochettino. Mauricio lamented his sides luck, while Martinez said his players were immense.

This small club mentality has followed him to a bigger club the same way it followed Rodgers. Poor performances are labelled as immense and outstanding for fear of damaging the egos of the players. Something which would be detrimental at a club on the periphery if relegation but those that are aiming higher have slightly thicker skin. This leads to the players if course eventually believing their manager and not improving their performance because a two nil loss to west ham is labelled as almost perfect. The response would have been a loss to Stoke but look what honesty got the reds.

I think Martinez should stop messing about doing his best Wenger and Rodgers live child impression and stop placing misguided faith in Howard and pull his finger out.
Franchise ( ain’t nothing changed but the year it is, United still boring)


Why is Bale to United dismissed?
Can I ask why any mention of ‘Bale to United’ is derided and greeted so dismissively on F365? Is the idea so far fetched?

Let’s be realistic, Real Madrid don’t exactly pride themselves on keeping players long term. When a new, shinier toy comes along, Real will buy it and Bale will be replaced. Just like they did with Alonso. Just like they did with Ozil. Just like they did with Di Maria.

In my opinion, there are only five other clubs a player of Bale’s stature would go to from there; Bayern, Barcelona, City, Chelsea and United. Personally, I don’t think he’ll go to Bayern or Barca and that a return to England beckons.

He may prefer living in London again, but Chelsea might be the least attractive prospect of the 3 English clubs. Any of the 3 could afford the transfer fee and his wages, so is ‘Bale to United’ such a ridiculous thought?
Kev The Clarke, MUFC (..or is it just wishful thinking?!), Skem
(MC – It’s more the way it’s pushed down our throats every single day. Like Ronaldo was. And Vidal. And Ramos. And Gaitan. And Sneijder.)


Kane v Lukaku v Giroud
..Having read yesterdays mail about Lukaku vs Kane I went like seriously?

Both are fine strikers, and whoever of those two would come of your club you wouldn’t really mind.

Real question is actually, who would rather chose Olivier Giroud over your current striking option(s)?

Now this really brings things into perspective. Reason is he really divides opinion of the masses (on his football ability).

Is he good, is he crap? Would he improve my team? He or Vardy? Well if he’s crap then why his team on top of the league?

There are a lot of teams out there, but lets take a look over few of them title challengers (plus Man Utd ,Liverpool and Chelsea);

Man City: No – Aguero? Duh. But he is better option than Wilfried Bony.
Leicester City: Yes. Vardy can play alongside and benefit A LOT.
Tottenham: No – Kane.
Man Utd: Yes. Oh come on you would rather see Rooney on top? Or a proper striker?
Liverpool: Yes. He is better than Benteke and Balotelli combined. He is still there no? Balotelli? I don’t know its all the same.
Chelsea: No – Costa. But halfway through the season, I think we could agree Giroud got the edge.

So what do you think? Would Giroud improve your team?
Syfq Amr, a bias Gooner.


…Is this an option? We will have both thanks, Diego Costa will be on his way in return.

Guus Hiddink


Lukaku would struggle at a top club
Ok, please lets all just stop.

Lukaku will struggle at a ‘top club’ just like all big men before him.

Top clubs need greater movement and guile than Lukaku provides.

Thank you.
Graham (maybe im just annoyed at Benteke) LFC


I’ll take your Barnsley, and give you a QPR
Hmmm a club with an itchy trigger finger. Surely QPR have a shout at winning this one.

The Flavio/Bernie years (07 to 11) where always fun with managers on edge from the first game, just waiting in the dugout for the call from Flavio.

Whether that call was to give you the bullet or to instruct you to stick our shiny new goalkeeper up front was like some strange game of Russian Roulette.

Anyway the full list..

Gerry Francis 91-94 158 games
Ray Wilkins 94-96 80
Stewart Houston 96-97 63
John Hollins 97-97 4
Ray Harford 97-98 41
Iain Dowie 98-98 2
Gerry Francis 98-01 125
Iain Holloway 01-06 252
Gary Waddock 06-06 23
John Gregory 06-07 48
Mick Harford 07-07 5
Luigi De Canio 07-08 35
Iain Dowie 08-08 15
Gareth Ainsworth 08-08 7
Paulo Sousa 08-09 26
Gareth Ainsworth 09-09 5
Jim Magilton 09-09 24
Steve Gallen & Marc Bircham 09-09 1
Paul Hart 09-10 5
Mick Harford 10-10 7
Neil Warnock 10-12 84
Mark Hughes 12-12 32
Mark Bowen & Eddie Niedzwiecki 12-12 1
Harry Redknapp 12-15 103
Chris Ramsey & Kevin Bond 15-15 2
Chris Ramsey 15-15 30
Neil Warnock 15-15 4
Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink 15-
Matt (Wiki is fact, right?)_


Or Forest
Looking at the Barnsley managers list in the ‘modern era’ (Sky era), I started thinking about my beloved Nottingham Forest. Our manager list falls short in numbers, but just look at the dross

Brian Clough
Frank Clark
Stuart Pearce
Dave Bassett
Ron Atkinson
David Platt
Paul Hart
Joe Kinnear
Gary Megson
Colin Calderwood
Billy Davies
Steve McLaren
Steve Cotterill
Sean O’Driscoll
Alex McLeish
Billy Davies
Staurt Pearce
Dougie Freedman

I mean this reads as a ‘Who’s Who’ of terrible, joke managers playing some of the most negative shitty football ever seen. Bassett, Atkinson, McLeish, Megson, McLaren, Kinnear. Can any club point to a higher amount of dross managers than in less that 20 years? Billy Davies, Clark, Clough and Paul Hart are the only managers on that list looked upon fondly (well, without hatred). Platt might be the most hated of the lot due to him ruining any chance of a quick return to the prem after he bought all his Italian mates on big money contracts with no return, and we’ve been out of the top flight ever since. Good to know that, if you’re a failed manager, there’s always another ‘jobs for the boys’ at Nottingham Forest
Keith (this team can’t get their act together for one whole season), Worthing.


Statistics? Pah
As you ve decided to use statistics (which you refuse to share with the rest of us ) as a barometer based on personal bias would you mind if I have a go:

* Dennis bergkamp had a goal average through out his career of .36 cantona’s was .35 (see wikipedia) so he must be overrated
* Arsene wenger has so far a .00 sucess record in winning the league cup an champions league I guess he’s over rated
* The delightful Mesut Ozil had two prettty bang average seasons before this year which you have conviniently chosen if we use those figures I m sure he ll come across as a flash in the pan
* While where at it Utd 1999-2000 and Chelsea 2004-2005 and 2005-2006 all got more points and a higher win percentage than that Arsenals invicibles and no one keeps banging on about them (that may also be because those teams have won a league title afterwards ).Does this mean the invicibles are over-rated

In the end Statistics are all well and good but it’s the memorie these individuals and teams have created that make we want to watch football


Firstly well done for the recent article on the five underused players (or at least getting someone else to write it for you), As a united fan, can we now please stop p*ssing around with Bale and Neymar and please target good players that are actually available and combined would cost circa £75-£100m?
Sandip (admittedly it’s all gone a bit Champ Man)


Go on, Degs
Degsy. Legend.
Rohit Vankipuram


If Mike (AVFC), London appreciates a league where everything was to play for, then the Romanian Division C from 1983-84 should do the job. Finishing bottom, 3 points behind the team in second after 30 games is the very definition of excitement, even before you consider the 90 “Minerul” local derbies…
Uncle Albert (No Brackets Required), WHUFC


Parma spam
Am I correct in saying that Parma – once home to the Cannavaros, Buffon etc – are now in Serie D after the arse falling out of their bank account last year or the year before? Following the great mail on the pyramid, anyone know how they are doing now? Definitely number one on the list of clubs I’d buy if I was loaded.
Michael, Cork

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