Harry Kane ‘still has the smarts to win a major team the title’. Spurs must wish that Heung-min Son was as good as their second top scorer.
Stand up if you love the smarts
Harry Kane scored twice as Tottenham beat Arsenal on Thursday. Martin Samuel of the Daily Mail certainly enjoyed himself:
‘Kane is still capable of turning a match as important as this, he still has the smarts to win a major team the title.’
You literally cannot possibly know this of a player who has never won an actual trophy, never mind the title. How can you claim he ‘still has the smarts’ to do something he hasn’t done?
Cheers, Son’s crying
Mediawatch should not be surprised at the renewed eulogising of Kane, but this is pretty weird from the Daily Mail‘s Ian Ladyman:
‘Harry Kane – free now from the distractions of a possible move to City – is back to his magnificent best. His partner Son Heung-min is not far behind.’
Kane has 25 goals and nine assists in 4,070 minutes for Tottenham this season – one of either every 119.7 minutes.
Son has 22 goals and 10 assists in 3,346 minutes for Tottenham this season – one of either every 104.6 minutes. And he doesn’t take penalties.
Remind us again which player ‘is not far behind’ the other?
Three is the magic number
‘And Arsenal looked vulnerable on Thursday as Kane and Heung-Min Son took them apart. They got to a three goal lead within the hour, the first time there has been such a margin between these teams in Premier League history’ – Martin Samuel, Daily Mail.
Three crucial words are missing at the end there: ‘…in Tottenham’s favour’. Arsenal beat Spurs 3-0 in November 2002, December 2006 and October 2009, then 5-2 in February and November 2012.
Young at heart
The accepted theme in The Sun is that Arsenal’s callow players were dominated by the sheer experience of Tottenham.
Dave Kidd writes that the hosts ‘throbbed with menace’ but ‘Arsenal’s youths fell into naivety and ill-discipline. Mark Irwin adds that Spurs can leapfrog ‘Mikel Arteta’s anxious young team’ if they beat Burnley this weekend.
And that is all fine but it was 26-year-old Rob Holding getting sent off in his sixth season with the club, and 30-year-old Euros winner Cedric Soares who conceded the penalty. The kids weren’t exactly alright but it was the grown-ups who f**ked up.
The Daily Mirror website know what they are doing with this headline:
‘Tunnel cam captured interesting moment between Jurgen Klopp and Philippe Coutinho’
As the article explains: ‘it seems there is [are] no hard feelings between the parties, with Coutinho making a beeline for the German in the Villa Park tunnel and Klopp greeting the Brazilian with a big smiler [sic] and an even bigger hug.’
That really does ‘attract your attention because it is special, exciting or unusual’. Mediawatch expected Klopp to headbutt someone he worked with and got the best out of for almost two and a half years, despite Coutinho’s departure not being even vaguely acrimonious at the time or since.
System of a clown
The only thing the MailOnline have captured is the general struggle to comprehend the fluidity and similarities in formations:
‘Are you listening, Jurgen? Carlo Ancelotti reveals Real Madrid will line-up in a 4-3-3 formation against Liverpool in the Champions League final and NOT the 4-4-1-1 setup that saw them knock Manchester City out’
Let Ancelotti himself explain, when asked by Spanish outlet Diario AS:
“4-3-3. Sometimes it could end up as a 4-4-2. I don’t think there is a defined system, sometimes in order to press the pivot, as we did against City, you go from 4-3-3 to 4-4-1-1. The idea doesn’t change much, just the manner of defending the opponent a little.”
He specifically says that a) 4-3-3 allows an easy switch to 4-4-1-1 mid-game if necessary, and b) “the idea doesn’t change much” even if the system does. Jurgen is probably listening and is both unsurprised and unbothered.
Villan origin story
‘Steven Gerrard has targeted Liverpool defender Joe Gomez as he plots an overhaul of his Aston Villa defence’ – Darren Lewis, Daily Mirror exclusive, May 12.
‘Steven Gerrard is planning a huge shake-up at Aston Villa this summer… he will test Liverpool’s resolve to keep hold of Joe Gomez’ – Neil Moxley, Daily Mirror exclusive, April 9.
‘Villa still like Liverpool’s England international Joe Gomez…’ – The Athletic, March 9.
‘Steven Gerrard has made Liverpool star Joe Gomez his number one priority ahead of the summer window as he plots another big-name Aston Villa signing’ – Football Insider, February 21.
‘Villa are still deciding whether to sign a short-term replacement to act as cover and then re-assess in the summer. They like Liverpool’s Joe Gomez but know he will not be leaving Anfield this month’ – The Athletic, January 17.
‘Liverpool have received an Aston Villa offer for Joe Gomez , but the defender cannot be sold for the Reds’ – Calciomercato, December 17.
Can an ‘exclusive’ really be exclusive if it has been reported in each of the previous six months? And if it has already been ‘exclusive’ in the same newspaper? And if the speculation originated from the same newspaper?
De Jong story: short
This Manchester Evening News article did elicit a chuckle:
‘Frenkie de Jong has already told Manchester United his best position amid transfer links’
All fine thus far. Pretty standard fare. And then you get to the quote in question:
“I don’t necessarily have one position where I really want to play, but I think I’m at my best if I’m in a role where I can often touch the ball.”
Midfielder developed in part by Ajax and who now plays for Barcelona suggested he is most effective in possession during an interview three months ago (which was obviously not directed at Manchester United). More as we get it.