Who thinks Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has a poor work-rate and the potential for a behaviour problem? But first…
Monday night’s game – as it so often is – was truly rotten, so thank the lord that Hugo Lloris pushed Heung-min Son before half-time to give the newspapers a slew of back pages.
‘LLOR ‘N DISORDER’ is The Sun offering and we will reluctantly ignore the lack of a second apostrophe to applaud that lovely effort as Duncan Wright brings us this news:
‘JOSE MOURINHO branded the bust-up between Hugo Lloris and Son Heung-min as ‘beautiful’ but said: Blame me.
‘Spurs captain Lloris blasted his team-mate for not tracking back in first-half injury time as Everton’s Richarlison fired wide.’
Now if you are thinking that is a succinct explanation for the clash then you are a fool, for The Sun website are here to tease you about a more succulent story:
‘Real reason behind Hugo Lloris and Son’s sensational Tottenham bust-up which continued into tunnel and dressing room’
And what is this ‘real reason’ for which we have been compelled to click?
‘He (Lloris) said that Son’s failure to continue pressing his opponents to try and win the ball at the end of the first-half was the trigger for his amazing outburst.’
So that’s even less information that we already knew.
Excellent, real work made even better by the use of the word ‘feud’ in both the slug and the copy of the story. A dictionary defines ‘feud’ as ‘a prolonged and bitter quarrel or dispute’; it was literally over by the end of half-time.
Well done, (not) Son
Such is the nature of the English football media that Hugo Lloris was named Man of the Match (8/10) by the Daily Mirror solely for racing after Son and trying to lamp him.
Dig of the dump
By 10.30am on Tuesday, the Mirror website quite rightly decided that nobody really wanted to read about Tottenham anymore so this was their top, top, top headline:
‘Mount helps Chelsea officially launch new Nike away kit ahead of 20/21 season as Blues aim a dig at their London rivals’
Oooh, a dig is it? Count us in.
‘It seems Chelsea have also used the opportunity to aim a sly dig at their rivals in the capital too.’
Hmmm. It now just ‘seems’ to be a dig and said dig is now ‘sly’, which is tabloid-speak for imperceptible.
‘A separate image showed the slogan behind their design, originally written as ‘It’s a London thing,’ except with Chelsea scrawled over the top.’
Yes, they have basically shit on a cockerel while wielding a hammer and a large cannon.
Only Stan Collymore (Daily Mirror) would look at Mason Greenwood (eight Premier League goals, one per 115 minutes of football this season) and Jamie Vardy (21 Premier League goals, one per 123 minutes of football this season) and say that he would ‘only look at’ Greenwood (18) if the already-retired Vardy (33) did not respond to Gareth Southgate ‘spending the next 11 or so months working on’ him and trying to convince him to come out of retirement.
Why the hell would you discourage the most exciting young attacking player in the Premier League by begging a player who will then be 34 to come out of retirement to sit on an England bench?
People really should not be so quick to ‘speak their mind’ when their mind is full of such nonsense.
Talking of nonsense, we go to Martin Samuel of the Daily Mail, fresh from ludicrously wondering if he can still use the word ‘picnic’ and now setting his sights on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Because one of the most prolific scorers in Premier League history (51 goals in 80 games) is definitely the right target this week.
‘PIERRE-EMERICK AUBAMEYANG appears to be reconsidering leaving Arsenal, so perhaps Real Madrid have cooled on his transfer.’
Perhaps. Though Arsenal have also won three consecutive Premier League games and they do seem to be moving in the right direction so it’s probably a combination of factors.
‘Certainly, his early performances after Project Restart were those of a man whose attention was elsewhere.’
Like at Brighton, when he took more shots than any other game this season? Indeed, one Arsenal site rated him higher than any of his outfield teammates.
‘If he is more focused now, it could be because at 31, in a depressed economic climate, his options are increasingly limited, no matter his talent.’
Or it could be that he was focused all along and this is all conjecture.
‘The suggestion is that he wants £250,000 a week. He certainly has the potential to be worth that to Arsenal – unless he behaves as if he has done the club a favour by signing.’
First…potential? He is on course for his fifth consecutive season in double figures for top-flight goals. He is not Tammy sodding Abraham. And second…why on earth is anybody questioning his ‘behaviour’? There is literally nothing to suggest that he would ever act like ‘he has done the club a favour’ apart from lazy assumption.
And how very odd that Aubameyang is being questioned when he wants to stay at Arsenal after Samuel derided the Gunners as a ‘selling’ club less than two months ago?
Work, work, work
Meanwhile, Tony Cascarino in The Times:
‘I have never had any doubt about Aubameyang’s talent, only his workrate, but I noticed that Mikel Arteta, the Arsenal head coach, got him to work his socks off in the recent wins away to Southampton and Wolverhampton Wanderers.’
Cracked the whip, did he?
Seriously, this is something of a vendetta from Cascarino, who wrote in December:
“Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored last night but he really hurts Arsenal with his poor attitude. People talk about his goalscoring record — and it is indeed very good — but he needs to be a team player. Last night [against West Ham] he was just letting opposing defenders head the ball away without even making a challenge.
“Along with Mesut Özil, he is the laziest player in the side. His work ethic for a senior player is bordering on disgusting. Last week against Brighton & Hove Albion he remonstrated with Joe Willock, his young colleague, when he should be encouraging him. He would be the first one out of the club if it was up to me.”
A reminder: Arsenal won that game 3-1 and Aubameyang scored. Much like he usually does.
Sancho LIVE update
’11am Man Utd news LIVE: Jadon Sancho ‘agrees five-year deal’ – LATEST, Solskjaer pushing Woodward for deals, Pereira row’ – The Sun.
It is now four days and counting since the claim that Jadon Sancho has agreed a five-year deal.
F365 Shithouse headline of the day
‘Pundit: Man Utd ‘would get run all over’ if they signed Grealish’
And pundit is…Darren Bent.
Recommended watching of the day