The media stitch up Ratcliffe just like Ten Hag on Man Utd perch ‘vows’

Editor F365
Daily Mail back page on Sir Jim Ratcliffe
Daily Mail back page on Sir Jim Ratcliffe

Did Sir Jim Ratcliffe vow to knock Liverpool and Manchester City off their perches? Did he balls. And Jurgen Klopp never said those things either.


Take a vow
We are thankful to the Athletic for their transcript of Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s round-table interview with various Manchester United journalists because we can be absolutely certain of what he said.

And for the purposes of the back pages of most of Thursday’s newspapers, this is the pertinent part:

“We have a lot to learn from our noisy neighbour and the other neighbour. They are the enemy at the end of the day. There is nothing I would like better than to knock both of them off their perch.”

Now Ratcliffe did at least say “there is nothing I would like better than to knock both of them off their perch”, which is better than when Erik ten Hag got stitched up by the media despite saying nothing of the sort in May 2022.

Back then, they all collectively decided in their little huddle that the new Manchester United manager had ‘vowed’ and ‘warned’ Liverpool and Manchester City, with the Mail declaring on their back page: ‘I’LL KNOCK BIG TWO OFF THEIR PERCH’.

Now obviously Ratcliffe the billionaire had no such qualms about being careful with his words and quite obviously used the word ‘perch’ with all its connotations but do you know what he didn’t do? He didn’t ‘vow’ (‘make a solemn promise’) because that would be idiotic. And you don’t become a billionaire if you’re an idiot, no matter how hard Elon Musk is trying to refute that truism.

‘I’LL KNOCK ENEMIES OFF THEIR PERCH’ says the back page of the Daily Express. Nope. Not what he said.

And to the Daily Mail

He ‘insisted’ they are the enemy, did he? Did it have to be ‘insisted’? Isn’t it just, well, true?

Mike Keegan writes:

‘Sir Jim Ratcliffe last night vowed to knock Manchester City and Liverpool off their perches after becoming co-owner of Manchester United.’

Still not. You sat there. You listened. You recorded. And then you wrote something different. Because you all collectively decided that it was a ‘vow’ when it was very much a ‘wish’.

Does it matter? Do we have any sympathy for Sir Jim Ratcliffe anyway after his ‘hype’ comments on Mason Greenwood? No we don’t. But it does matter when proper journalists – not interns churning out chop-and-shop news re-writes – wilfully skew the narrative. The quotes were good anyway; they didn’t need to obfuscate.

And it’s not just the tabloids because the Daily Telegraph threw themselves down the same hole:

And The Guardian, who headlined Sean Ingle’s piece thus: ‘Ratcliffe vows Manchester United will knock City and Liverpool ‘off their perch”

Frankly, we expected better. And we vow to keep highlighting it. And yes, that is a solemn promise.


Jeremy Cross – who writes about Manchester United for the Daily Star and their sister papers – did actually resist claiming that Sir Jim Ratcliffe had vowed or promised anything, calmly writing in the Daily Mirror: ‘Sir Jim Ratcliffe will follow Sir Alex Ferguson’s mantra and look to knock Manchester United’s bitter rivals, City and Liverpool, “off their perch”.’


But obviously ‘fair’ creates no clicks so ‘Sir Jim Ratcliffe makes bold Sir Alex Ferguson promise that will infuriate Liverpool fans’.

a) Not a ‘promise’.

b) Why the f*** would it ‘infuriate Liverpool fans’ that the new minority shareholder of a club currently 16 points behind them in the Premier League would quite like to be better, thank you.

It would probably ‘infuriate’ them more if he had only mentioned Manchester City.


Playing favourites
We also expect better from the BBC, who write:

‘Manager Jurgen Klopp believes Chelsea are “definitely” favourites for Sunday’s Carabao Cup final but said a depleted Liverpool “will go for it”.’

What Klopp actually said:

“Will we be big favourites? Definitely not.”

Absolutely not the same thing.

Oh and Liverpool really are the big favourites.


Do you wanna be a record-equaller?
You will be shocked to find that Mediawatch is a tad pedantic. We hide it so very well.

Despite Arsenal’s foolproof plan to win the Champions League, they stumbled at the very first hurdle in Portugal. But do you know what they didn’t do?

ARSENAL broke an unwanted record during their shock defeat to Porto in the Champions League.

Nope. Nada. Did they balls.

The Gunners lost the first leg of their round of 16 clash after a 94th-minute goal from Galeno.

It was the first time the North London outfit failed to have a shot on target in the competition since the 3-1 defeat to Barcelona in 2011.

Didn’t break a record then, did they? At best (or worst), they equalled it. And it’s not really a record.

The same website (and same journalist) gave Leandro Trossard 4/10 in their player ratings and wrote that he ‘missed multiple chances to score’.

Pesky fact: He had one shot from just inside the box that had an xG of 0.03.