Why are we pretending Klopp and Solskjaer have beef?

Date published: Thursday 5th March 2020 12:25

Two meat carvery
We start with the back page of The Sun, mainly because we pretty much always start with the back page of The Sun.

‘Jur never Gunnar do Treble’ is the headline, letting us know with two quick, terrible puns that this is about Jurgen Klopp and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. And it sounds like beef. But the byline is ‘Neil Custis’ so it sounds like beef but tastes like gammon.

‘OLE GUNNAR SOLSKJAER believes Liverpool can NEVER emulate the Treble triumph of Manchester United 1999 heroes.’

Does he, though?

‘Jurgen Klopp’s side are hailed by some as England’s best ever.’


‘Yet while they might be on their way to League glory for the first time in 30 years they are out the FA Cup and clinging on in the Champions League.’

Basically, they’re sh*t.

‘United boss Solskjaer said: “The Treble was a fantastic achievement. We hope we’re going to do it again but it’s a difficult task and more or less impossible.

“There are so many good teams around. It has changed domestically, it was either us or Arsenal in ’99 and now there’s more of us.”

(Try and ignore the crashing sound of the word ‘us’.)

‘More or less impossible’ is not really never (sorry, NEVER) is it? And there is literally not one mention of Liverpool. Not one. So really, what Solksjaer believes is that the nature of modern football means that it’s very unlikely that anybody will ever win a treble again. Which is what every sensible person in football believes.

But why would you ever let logic get in the way of manufactured beef?


Of course
Let’s go back to that back-page line about Liverpool from Neil Custis:

‘Yet while they might be on their way to League glory for the first time in 30 years they are out the FA Cup and clinging on in the Champions League.’

And then on the inside pages, Custis writes about Wayne Rooney:

‘OLE GUNNAR SOLSKJAER warned Wayne Rooney that any goal he scores against Manchester United will come off of his club-record tally.’

Leave aside the fact that it was clearly hilarious banter rather than a ‘warning’ and read that sentence again. ‘Off of’? ‘OFF OF’?

It’s like he knew he needed an ‘of’ somewhere. Back page, fella, back page.


Power of three
On the back page of the Daily Mirror, we find a headline of ‘ROO: REDS FACE A STRUGGLE FOR THREE YEARS’ and end up incredibly confused that this is headline news.

Reminder: It’s been seven years since they last won the Premier League title.


Ain’t nothing but a number
Over at the Daily Star website, they are not about to allow a lack of real Manchester United transfer news stop them pretending that Manchester United are definitely about to sign two players.

‘Man Utd shirt numbers available for Jadon Sancho and Jack Grealish’

It’s important stuff.

We learn that ‘Sancho is likely to part ways with Borussia Dortmund in the summer with the aim of winning major silverware with his current side sitting third in the Bundesliga table’.

Yes, that is definitely why Sancho would leave Borussia Dortmund (third and four points behind Bayern Munich and in the knock-out stages of the Champions League) for Manchester United (fifth and 37 points behind Liverpool and in the knock-out stages of the Europa League).

But what about the numbers?

‘Numbers one up to 10 are currently taken at Old Trafford but both Grealish and Sancho are set to have low numbers to show their importance to the squad.’

‘Numbers one up to 10 are currently taken’ except the No. 7, which is one of the club’s most iconic shirts. And thanks for the insight about the ‘low numbers’, though Bruno Fernandes wears the No. 18; is he not important?

‘With that in mind, the 19-year-old could receive the iconic 7 shirt should it be taken away from flop Alexis Sanchez, having previously been worn by the likes of George Best, Eric Cantona and David Beckham.’

He could. You’re right. But what about Grealish? This shit is crucial.

‘Villa captain Grealish will be unable to continuing wearing No 10 should be move to United with that number occupied by Marcus Rashford.

‘Fan favourite Rashford will not be forced to change, but the No 11 shirt remains free after Anthony Martial took No 9 after Romelu Lukaku’s exit.’

That’s a whole lot of words to reach the numbers 7 and 11.


The storm is passing over
‘PHIL FODEN leads the kids taking the FA Cup by storm,’ was The Sun’s claim on Wednesday.

On Thursday we can confirm that Phil Foden did not play a minute in the FA Cup, Troy Parrott played 24 minutes before having a penalty saved and Jude Bellingham did not play at all.

Storm? It’s barely a drizzle.


Bottle job
Tim Krul saved two penalties on Tuesday night and he prepared for a possible penalty shoot-out as all good goalkeepers would prepare for a possible shoot-out. This has been A Thing ever since Ben Foster looked at an iPad during the 2009 League Cup final. It’s not new; it’s just called ‘being a professional’.

So let’s see how comedy Cockney Paul Jiggins reports on the development of Krul carrying a water bottle with details of Tottenham’s penalty-takers in The Sun:

‘KEEPER Tim Krul was the Norwich hero as he saved two shootout penalties – after appearing to have a cheat-sheet written on his water bottle.’

It’s not a frigging exam.

Elsewhere, MailOnline bring us this predictably bloated headline:

‘Tim Krul had Tottenham’s penalty directions written on his WATER BOTTLE for his shoot-out heroics… and he even knew where Troy Parrott would hit ball despite him making just ONE senior appearance!’

A WATER BOTTLE! Whatever next? Oh and he had made THREE senior appearances.

In the quest to find a new angle to this fascinating story, the Mirror website went for this headline:

‘Tim Krul water bottle penalty preparations spotted before FA Cup heroics’

‘Spotted’. Somebody ‘spotted’ he had a water bottle! We’re just astonished that they weren’t spotted ‘just minutes’ before his FA Cup heroics.


Explanation of the day
‘Takumi Minamino’s lack of Liverpool playing time explained’ – Daily Star website.

Is it because Liverpool have lots of better players? Yes it’s because Liverpool have lots of better players.


Recommended reading of the day
Adam Bate on the rehabilitation of Fred

Rory Smith on the Bundesliga


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