Mediawatch: ‘Excellent’ or ‘out of sorts’?

Date published: Wednesday 21st October 2015 11:46

Howard’s end
Mediawatch was confused and disappointed to see Steven Howard being so positive about Arsenal in The Sun on Wednesday. He even talks about Arsenal’s ‘great Champions League escape’, remarking that ‘it’s all to play for’ in Munich.

Which is odd, because only a week ago Howard wrote that he thought Arsenal would be better off losing.

‘Should Arsenal suffer back-to-back defeats against Bayern Munich — P11, W11 and 24 goals in their last six games — they could well finish bottom of the group and not even qualify for the Europa League,’ Howard wrote. ‘Arsenal, free of other distractions, will then never have a better chance of winning their first title since the Invincibles in 2003-04. Just call it forward planning. And they never do anything in the Champions League anyway.’

Turns out Arsene Wenger preferred winning matches to ‘forward planning’.


Money, cash, blows
While reading the following, bear in mind that it is presented as a story in Britain’s best-selling newspaper. We’re all f**ked.

‘Going to spend more money, Manuel?’ the strangely uncredited piece in The Sun begins.

‘He has blown £322.7million since being at City – but Manuel Pellegrini is still desperate for more. The Etihad boss was spotted at an ATM yesterday but took FIVE MINUTES faffing with the buttons.

‘The way he spends money, you’d have thought he’d have the process nailed by now.’

Imagine loitering near a 62-year-old man, checking your watch to time him doing a menial task.


The continuation of Klopp-mania
Poor Rob Draper of the Daily Mail. He wrote over 600 words for MailOnline about Pep Guardiola on Tuesday evening. It includes references to the tempo of his preferred passing and flexibility.

Unfortunately for Draper, it also included the following throwaway clause, italicised below:

‘But after nine straight wins in the Bundesliga, this was a gentle dig in the ribs to Guardiola and his backroom staff – one of whom got fans on social media talking for his apparent likeness to new Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp – a reminder that, outside of Germany, he has yet to prove his worth to Bayern.’

So how did the MailOnline sell Draper’s piece on their football homepage? ‘Pep’s backroom Klopp doppelganger gets people talking… but defeat by Arsenal serves reminder that he is yet to prove his worth to Bayern outside of Germany.’ That’s how.

What a bloody shame.


Slight difference of opinion #1
‘Alexis Sanchez – Another excellent performance from Sanchez, who made as great a player as Philipp Lahm look supremely average. Wherever, whenever he just ran at defenders, creating opportunities aplenty in the process’ – Independent.

‘Alexis Sanchez – Played under Pep Guardiola previously and showed why he was so valued by the former Barcelona manager. His willingness to run at Bayern ensured he was involved in just about all of Arsenal’s best attacks’ – Daily Telegraph.

‘Alexis Sanchez – Looked out of sorts for once and gave the ball away a lot’ – Daily Mirror.


Slight difference of opinion #2
‘If that is what tough love does for Eden Hazard, then Jose Mourinho better try it with the rest of the team. Hazard put in his best performance of the season. It was all about hard work, tracking back and putting in a shift for the team. It was reminiscent of Hazard at his best last season and will be hugely encouraging for Chelsea’ – John Cross, Daily Mirror.

‘Once again, Hazard—dropped to the bench for Chelsea’s 2-0 victory against Aston Villa—struggled to make a significant impression. Hazard’s level of performance declined, and more than once he was caught in possession after running himself into a dead end. He tried everything to break the deadlock for Chelsea, including switching wings multiple times, but in the end it wasn’t to be his night. Despite being a long way from his best, it was not his worst performance of the season’ – Marc Smith, Daily Telegraph.


Feel the benefit
‘Man United’s LVG brings memories of Moyes flooding back with bizarre comment,’ reads the headline on the Metro football homepage.

Let’s have a quiz. What was that ‘bizarre comment’?

a) “I’m so lucky to be here, it makes me cry at night.”

b) “Finishing in the top six would be a good achievement.”

or, c) “Every club at the top of the league has the same problems. But now Manchester City has a benefit because they are going to play at home and that is the difference. You have the benefit of recuperation. Manchester City don’t have the travel we have so they have more rest. There is nothing you can do.”

Someone prepare the plane banner.


Leaving on the midnight train
‘Liverpool and Man United target Ilkay Gundogan discusses leaving Borussia Dortmund,’ reads the headline on the Daily Express website. Oooh what’s he said.

Actual quotes from Gundogan: “This is an issue that is always floating around. I am very happy with BVB and feel very comfortable here. Of course, I can imagine remaining here beyond the end of the season.”

Or not.


Yeah, we get it

If Mediawatch had a time machine, we’d be going to tomorrow as fast as we f**king could.


Optimism reigns
“I still feel I am young enough, and that I have a lot of years ahead of me. Players in the past have known when the time is right to finish playing and I am certainly nowhere near that stage. I feel fitter and fresher than I ever have done really” – Wayne Rooney.

Really. Really?


BBC Sport or BBC Sporf?

Sadly, the answer is always the same. This might be a new low.


Cultural relations of the day
Said Mark Lawrenson on Olivier Giroud’s opening goal: “It’s come off his nose, he’s French they’ve all got big noses.”


Typical Derek McGovern line of the day
‘Little seems to work in the bid to stop migrants flocking to these shores, so how about telling them all that the Leeds job has already been filled?’ – Derek McGovern, Daily Mirror.

Charming as ever.


Inaccurate headline of the day
‘Cisse Quit Shock’ – Daily Mirror.

He’s 34, has played 66 minutes of league football in 18 months due to injury and needs a hip replacement in January. The ‘shock’ would be if Djibril Cisse carried on.


Recommended reading of day
Rory Smith
on the Premier League’s crisis culture.

Marina Hyde on the latest “monstrous arsehole” linked with FIFA presidency.

Michael Cox on the rise of Hector Bellerin.

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