Mediawatch: The great mind of Mr Savage

Date published: Thursday 28th January 2016 1:04

Timing is everything
Robbie Savage Football365








Less than five minutes later…



BBC Football365





Cheers, Robbie.


Mr. Marmite
Thankfully, Savage was not done there. He’s a little confused over Kevin de Bruyne, you see.

On 72 minutes, the League Cup winner told BBC Radio 5 live: “I said it’s about time De Bruyne came up with a really important goal.”

On 90 minutes, the League Cup winner said, on De Bruyne’s injury: “This looks like it could be a big moment in Manchester City’s season.”

After the match, the League Cup winner said: “What a game…substitutions were key. Kevin de Bruyne came on and changed the game.”

So a player who doesn’t often score important goals scores an important goal, gets injured after “changing the game” and his injury is thus a “big moment” in the season for Manchester City. It’s almost as though De Bruyne – with his twelve goals and twelve assists this season, five more than his closest team-mate – is fairly important.

‘Football’s Mr. Marmite’? Some people do actually like Marmite.


Precious Stones
Writes David McDonnell in the Daily Mirror: ‘John Stones endured a wretched night as Everton’s hopes of an all-Merseyside final were dashed.’

Stones is awarded a 6 out of ten by the Mirror; only three of his team-mates scored higher. If his was a ‘wretched night’, then what did Joel Robles, Ramiro Funes Mori, Gareth Barry, Gerard Deulofeu and Romelu Lukaku, who all also scored a six, ‘endure’? Never mind Leon Osman, James McCarthy, Tom Cleverley and Arouna Kone, who were all rated at five.


Headline acts
The below are a list of headlines taken from January 7, following Everton’s 2-1 victory over Manchester City in the Capital One Cup semi-final first leg.

‘Stones displays welcome arrogance and hints of a young Bobby Moore’ – The Independent.

‘Stones showed he has all the traits to be an England captain’ – Daily Mail.

‘Value is rising for diamond Stones’ – Daily Mirror.

‘John Stones is a real diamond who deserves the chance to sparkle on the biggest stage’ – Daily Star.

The below are a list of headlines taken from January 28, following Everton’s 3-1 defeat to Manchester City in the Capital One Cup semi-final second leg.

‘City’s target Stones is no longer a rock’ – The Sun.

‘£50m man Stones has no defence’ – Daily Mail.

‘Precious Stones loses his sparkle’ – Daily Mirror.

What a difference three weeks makes.

Build ’em up to knock ’em down; the English way.


Brian Reade is asking the big question in his column for the Daily Mirror: ‘Why weren’t bigger clubs than Southampton trying to persuade Charlie Austin to ditch a return to his south-coast roots and sign for them?’

‘Because he wanted to wanted to move closer to his young family and his friends on the South Coast, where he used to play for Poole Town and train with Bournemouth,’ Mediawatch answers. He’s not listening.

Reade continues: ‘Maybe because the 10 league goals he’s scored this season were done so in the Championship, meaning he was way under the radar of top clubs’ scouts whose active networks seem only to operate abroad.’

Since the summer transfer window, Austin has been linked with Aston Villa, Bournemouth, Chelsea, Crystal Palace, Leicester, Liverpool, Manchester United, Newcastle, Sunderland, Swansea, West Brom and West Ham. Arsenal do not need a striker of Austin’s ilk, and nor do Manchester City. So who are these ‘top clubs’ Reade speaks of?

‘All of the so-called Big Six could do with another striker but they never seem to lower their eyes to the league below,’ Reade says. No mention of Patrick Roberts leaving Championship Fulham for Manchester City in the summer? Or Danny Ings, Joe Gomez and Adam Bodgan all joining Liverpool from the second tier? Nothing of Chelsea signing Reading’s Michael Hector, either.

That ‘so-called Big Six’ includes Tottenham of course, and Reade does at least mention the success of Dele Alli. Only on Thursday Mediawatch read reports linking them with moves for Moussa Dembele (Fulham), James Maddison (Coventry) and Ademola Lookman (Charlton).

‘It’s time the big clubs woke up and looked at what lies beneath,’ Reade concludes.

They already do, Brian. It’s just that Austin joined Southampton for family reasons and is on a whacking great wage. Football is not everything.


Pato cake
Harry Redknapp has a warning for Chelsea fans in the Evening Standard: ‘I wouldn’t be getting too excited about signing Alexandre Pato,’ he says. Why, Harry?

‘They have already got Willian, Oscar and Eden Hazard – where is Pato going to play?’

Erm, as a back-up striker?


El nono
‘Atletico Madrid won’t offer Fernando Torres a permanent contract when his Chelsea loan expires at the end of the season,’ say The Metro.

What about when his AC Milan loan – the club he joined permanently last January – expires at the end of the season?


Structured interview
Adam Lallana has been a busy boy. The rejuvenated Liverpool winger is revelling in the club’s imminent trip to Wembley for the Capital One Cup final in February, and rightfully so. They edged past Stoke in the semi-final to do so, and the 27-year-old has revealed the secrets as to how they managed to overcome the Potters.

“We were poor and there were a few strong words at half-time, not just from the manager but from ourselves. We knew it,” Lallana said. You did still lose the actual match, Adam.

Lallana then referenced Manchester United’s team talk against Liverpool when the two sides met earlier this month.

“It wasn’t over the top like that,” said Lallana. “We could hear it kicking off from our dressing room that day. It wasn’t that, ours was more structured, but we knew we weren’t good enough in the first half.”

Mediawatch suggests that United would take an “over the top” team talk, one which inspired a 1-0 victory with the scores 0-0 at half-time, over a “structured” one which inspired a 1-0 defeat when 1-0 down at half-time.


Google flex
There has been quite an unusual reaction to Crystal Palace’s new signing Emmanuel Adebayor’s first interview since joining the club. The striker has committed the cardinal sin of admitting he doesn’t know a great deal about the club, and will have to Google them.

‘Emmanuel Adebayor has risked the wrath of Crystal Palace fans – by admitting he will have to Google the club,’ writes Paul Brown in the Daily Star. Mediawatch would love to hear of Paul Brown’s extensive Togolese top-flight knowledge.


Reads the first paragraph to Darren Lewis’s piece in the Daily Mirror: ‘Gary Cahill fears he will miss Euro 2016 with England this summer because he is not playing for Chelsea.”

Mediawatch fears more for his chances if he were playing for Chelsea, frankly.



Were accounts really needed to ‘reveal’ that players didn’t earn £300,000 a week more than 50 years ago?


Headline of the day
‘Aguero shows no Mersey’ – Daily Mirror.


Worst headline of the day
‘Goo are ya?’ – The Sun.


Recommended reading of the day
Jonathan Liew on Manchester United’s demise.

Uli Hesse on Louis van Gaal at Bayern Munich.

Jonathan Wilson on the Premier League’s smaller clubs.


Thanks to Stu Davis and Mike Smith. If you see anything that belongs on this page, mail us at, putting ‘Mediawatch’ in the subject field.

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