The Page That Is Half-Broken

Date published: Thursday 1st January 1970 12:00 -

The Page That Is Half-Broken

Give Me A Reason

Mediawatch invites you to come play a friendly game of Pedro roulette. Choose your favourite reason:

‘Mourinho talks £21m Pedro into snubbing United’ – Daily Mail.

‘Fabregas and Semaan, his girlfriend, spoke to Pedro and his wife and helped them to decide to make the move to London’ – The Times.

‘LVG changes his mind over Pedro’ – The Sun.

‘Pedro scared off by tough guy LVG’ – Daily Mirror.

‘Pedro agreed terms with both clubs but ended up doubting how serious United were to sign him’ – Daily Star.

Fight, Fight, Fight

With Manchester United and Chelsea all offering their own leaked media spin, there always likely to be a lack of cohesion on just what went on with Pedro.

However, whilst Mediawatch would expect different versions in different papers, we didn’t think we’d see one paper basically arguing with itself. Step forward The Sun.

‘Louis van Gaal wants Southampton ace Sadio Mane after apparently changing his mind about signing Barcelona star Pedro,’ Neil Custis writes on the back page. ‘Manchester United insist that they were ready to pay the £21.25m fee for Pedro but manager Van Gaal blocked the deal – allowing Chelsea to hijack the move. Pedro was left bemused by United’s actions having come to an agreement over personal terms’.

Turn over the page, and Antony Kastrinakis gives his take on the deal.

‘Pedro joined Chelsea after getting fed up of waiting for Manchester United to rubber stamp his Old Trafford deal,’ Kastrinakis writes.

That’s clear.

Don’t Force It

Mediawatch is a sad sort. Occasionally we read something innocuous that sounds a tiny alarm in the back of our mind, a distant memory that we really should have lost to the ether. Today was one of those days.

‘Thomas Muller will have to hand in a transfer request at Bayern Munich if he wants to secure a £60m move to Manchester United’, writes Jeremy Cross in the Daily Star. It’s an ‘exclusive’.

Off went that alarm.

‘Nicolas Otamendi to hand in transfer request to force move to Manchester United’ – Jeremy Cross, Daily Star.

‘Former Chelsea ace Kevin De Bruyne must hand in transfer request to force Man City switch’ – Jeremy Cross, Daily Star.

‘Man United ask Sergio Ramos to hand in transfer request and force move’ – Colin Harvey, Daily Star.

‘Man Utd target Juan Cuadrado handed in a transfer request to FORCE Old Trafford move’ – Colin Harvey, Daily Star.

‘World-class star considering handing in transfer request to force £35m Man United move’ – Jonathan Green, Daily Star.

‘Southampton star Adam Lallana considering TRANSFER REQUEST to force Liverpool move’ – Rhys Turrell, Daily Star.

‘Southampton’s Morgan Schneiderlin hands in TRANSFER REQUEST to force Tottenham move’ – Colin Harvey, Daily Star.

‘Sporting Lisbon’s Marcos Rojo hands in transfer request to FORCE £16m Man Utd move’ – Rhys Turrell, Daily Star.

The Daily Star are a ‘force’ of something. Mediawatch is not sure that it’s nature.

Keep Ball

“I’m an honest guy, I know when I haven’t played well and against Aston Villa I was below my standards and I know that. I think, obviously, I lost the ball too easily a lot of times and I’m aware of that. Fortunately, I had a much better game against Brugge” – Wayne Rooney.

Number of times Rooney lost possession against Aston Villa: 13
Number of times Rooney lost possession against Club Brugge: 13

Stoke The Fire

‘Southampton’s defenders face a big test against FC Midtjylland – dubbed the Stoke of Danish football – in tonight’s Europa League play-off first leg… Koeman warned: “They have a player, Kian Hansen, who has throw-ins like corners”‘ – The Sun.

Not only can Mediawatch find no previous example of Midtjylland being compared to Stoke, but we should also point out that Rory Delap last started a league game for them in May 2012.

They’re ‘Barcelona B’ now, guys.

Take A Punt

Writes Matthew Dunn in the Daily Express: ‘There could be more to follow when a number of bookmakers reduced the odds on Paul Pogba beating his own £50m path to Stamford Bridge from 7-1 to 6-4.’

By ‘a number of bookmakers’, Dunn means ‘one’. We hope he saved his money: Pogba to Chelsea is available at 11/1 this morning. If anything, it’s more unlikely than yesterday.

Grin and Bear It

‘Tim Sherwood says he has no intention of being the Bear Grylls of the Premier League. The Aston Villa boss has told his new-look squad that he won’t accept another year of scrambling around for survival’ – Daily Star.

Mentions of Bear Grylls: None (but you knew that anyway)

Sometimes Mediawatch shakes its head. This time it could only stand up and applaud.

Image Of The Day

‘It was a cry laced with such heartfelt patriotism it set off involuntary movements in my Union Jack boxer shorts’ – Brian Reade, Daily Mirror.

Mediawatch can’t believe it’s saying this, but we hope he means the front.

Accusation Of The Day

‘Fair play to the Italians, who long ago worked out there is literally more money than sense at the top of the Premier League, and are managing to get their share of the ludicrous TV cash it attracts, by making offers our clubs’ accountants can’t refuse. It’s good to see the mafia is alive and well and still getting a piece of the action’ – Brian Reade, Daily Mirror.

Careful Brian. Don’t want to be cleaning up a horse’s head in those Union Jack boxer shorts.

Underwhelming Headline Of The Day

‘Wayne Rooney confident of scoring again for Manchester United’ – Sky Sports.

For £300,000 a week, you’d chuffing hope so.

Factually Correct Headline Of The Day

‘Pardew: Murray is our player’ – Sky Sports.

Take that, conspiracy theorists.

Headline Of The Day

‘I Want Jack In The Box’ – Daily Mirror. Works.

Non-Football Story Of The Day

‘A drunk has been jailed after she stole a 100-seat ferry and smashed into boats, yelling, “I’m Jack Sparrow! I’m a pirate!”

‘Alison Whelan, 51, boarded the 45ft Dart Princess with a friend after a two-day bender, where she got drunk on Lambrini and ate poisonous deadly nightshade, which causes hallucinations. She undid the mooring ropes in the early hours and drifted up a river on the tide, bashing into other boats “like a pinball machine”.

‘Whelan taunted police, shouting: “What are you going to do now?” and “I believe this is out of your jurisdiction!” Thirty police, a lifeboat crew, Coastguards and paramedics had to be called.

‘And when the cops finally arrested her after an hour when the ferry came to rest in calm water, she told them: “We’d have ended up in St Tropez if we hadn’t been caught”‘ – Daily Record.

Thanks to Phil Quaite. If you spot anything that belongs on this page, mail us at, putting ‘Mediawatch’ in the subject field.

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