I’m not disagreeing with much of that Farmer but the central point I was making, which you agree with, was that Mourinho might have had legitimate cause for complaint six months ago. Coming out with all this crap now is infuriating. He’s a powerful enough and arrogant enough figure in the game to stand up and say what he thinks. If he didn’t want Arnesen or Shevchenko the time to say it has long since passed.

Also I would refute the suggestion that the general manager type figure is not successful at a club. Real Madrid are an extreme example, admittedly one I brought up, but they were doing it long before the Galacticos experiment. Even at Barca Ronaldinho was signed by Laporta. Some clubs operate these structures and if you don’t like them, then don’t join them.

From the Fiver in The Guardian (it’s worth subscribing for this):


Place the crate of Spuming Paint Stripper on ice. Lock 'Er Indoors in
the kitchen. Squelch into those lucky pants. It’s the Premiership’s
Grand Slam Weekend folks! First up, at 12.45pm on Saturday, LIVE AND
EXCLUSIVE on your favourite money-grabbing, peasant-fleecing
satellite TV channel, watch Liverpool and Chelsea knee the beautiful
game in the swingers for 90 minutes solid. Then, at 4pm on Sunday,
watch Arsenal and the MU Rowdies compromise their aesthetic ideals in
an unexpected battle of 4-5-1!

Richard Keys and his chums are getting excited about the weekend’s
inaction for sure, but then Sky could big up Jade Goody’s IQ. We
don’t need Dr Emmett Brown or his DeLorean to tell us that
crisis-club Chelsea, unbeaten in ONLY 14 GAMES, will win an absolute
sickener of a game 1-0 at Anfield, after Frank Lampard’s 87-yard
potshot takes a wicked deflection off a chattering old windbag in
Stanley Park. And while the ArsenalRowdiethon has the capacity to
thrill, you really shouldn’t judge a book by its press release.

For all their clever political posturing in the sphere of attacking
football, Arsene Wenger and Lord Ferg, like fitness freaks who can’t
resist loaning their mush to a pile of dribbling Big Macs every so
often, are drawn towards 4-5-1 more often than is strictly healthy.
Expect at least one to start that way on Sunday. Besides, it’s
usually the way that preordained classics - the 1991 Big Cup final,
the 1996 FA Cup final, Germany v Argentina last summer - end up less
humdinger and more ‘Hmm? Minger’. Sunday’s game kicks off a run of
brutal away fixtures for the Rowdies that could do unto their title
challenge as a similar run did unto Newcastle’s in 1996, but Ferg
remains troublingly chipper. “Both teams are playing excellent
football and it is a difficult one to call,” he said, phoning one of
his few remaining friends. “Our form has been excellent and hopefully
we can reach that level on Sunday,” he added, triumphantly growling
‘Nae F****n Deal’ when Noel Edmonds offered him a 2-2 draw. And to
flog our lame quiz analogy to within an inch of its sorry life, it
must be said that for the random punter on the sofa, four goals in
both matches would be a Brucie-sized bonus.

Great performance by Liverpool today especially first half. Two great goals and plently of neat play. Solid defending and Chelsea never really threatened. It was a sign of how weakened Chelsea are that for the last five minutes Liverpool were very easily able to play keep-ball. I think we’ll overtake them now and finished second. I think Mourinho is probably too proud to walk away from the job but I wouldn’t be too surprised if he’s not manager come the end of the season. I must say I thought Pennant was very good and he’s impressed me a few times this season. I actually still have high hopes for this guy if he can produce decent form consistently. Following from a discussion in McDaid’s last night, I think that Liverpool could be excellent playing a 4-3-3 if they got a couple of attacking full-backs. Bit of a pipe-dream the players that I’m touting as replacements for Finnan and Riise but it’s kinda just to illustrate.





Quote of the day came via text from my brother - a fellow Norwegian hater - after Riise’s shot

‘Thanks be to Jaysus that didnt go in. I don’t want that ginger prick to be alive let alone be the subject of kop folklore’

To which I replied: ‘It was some shot in fairness. The twang off the crossbar reminded me of when Rivaldo hit it that time’ (referring to Barcelona game at Anfield in UEFA Cup in 2001 where Rivaldo shot from way out and the ball thundered off the crossbar)

To which he replied:
‘No, it reminded me of Colm Coyle’s long range effort against Mayo. Don’t ever liken Riise to a Brazilian again’

I don’t understsnd farmer’s train of thought here. So he didn’t want a Liverpool player to score? Fookin ridiculous. And what’s the Colm Coyle ‘analogy’ all about? His shot was a point. Yes, it was the score that earned Meath a replay. What’s that got to do with Riise (who by the way was superb for Liverpool against Chelsea)?

farmer, I owe you 20 cent. The 9-0 was in September that season not after christmas.

I was wrong. I am sorry.

Richard Keys after the Pool game on Saturday: ‘So Kenny, other than Liverpool winning did anything else happen here at Anfield today?’

Dalglish: ‘Eh what?’

Pool were pretty good but there’s definitely something rotten with Chelsea. They never showed any fight whatsoever and accepted their fate from very early on.

Arsenal’s win was a game you’d expect them to have lost in the past. The way they grinded that one out was something they wouldn’t have been able to do earlier on in the season. I wonder if the manner of the defeat will be so gutting for ManU that they’ll be affected in their next run of games. Fergie says it will steel them and be good for them. Hmmm, I’m not so sure.

Tony Mowbray has suspended his 'keeper Russell Hoult for the game at the weekend after a video cropped up on the internet of himself and another lad riding some bird, not Hoult’s wife.

He was cautioned by the police for kerbncrawling a few years back too.

Strange that he’d get suspended for that. It’s still his private life (although now it’s in the public domain).

Just copped that WBA aren’t in the EPL any more so this shouldn’t be in this thread. Shame.

Join me at 1.30pm for live, on-line, as it happens, coverage of the FA Cup 5th round draw!

There’s magic in the air at FA Headquarters.

Ah yes, it’s the magic of the FA Cup.

Draw numbers:

1 Arsenal or Bolton
2 Watford
3 Bristol City or Middlesbrough
4 Chelsea
5 Ipswich
6 Tottenham
7 Plymouth
8 Reading
9 Derby
10 Manchester City
11 Preston
12 Manchester United
13 Blackpool or Norwich
14 Blackburn
15 West Bromwich Albion
16 Fulham

Time to hand over to Sir Trevor Brooking.

Darren Campbell and Roger Black juggling their balls.

Chelsea vs Blackpool or Norwich
Watford vs Ipswich
Preston vs Manchester City
Plymouth vs Derby

Manchester United vs Reading
Arsenal or Bolton vs Blackburn
Bristol City or Boro vs West Brom
Fulham vs Spurs

Again, a scheidt draw with the big 3 all getting home draws.

Decent article from the Guardian. I must say I concluded that Thierry Henry is a cock after the Barca game last May but his behaviour at the weekend confirmed this. Goading the Wigan 'keeper. How embarrassing. It would have been like one of our players doing similar to the San Marino 'keeper. Stupid fooking clown.

Baby Henry ???
Rob Smyth
February 12, 2007 01:28 PM

Thierry Henry has it all. He is charming, urbane, intelligent, good-looking
and obscenely talented. To many, he is the nicest man in football. So why
has his behaviour become so infantile?

Henry is football’s disingenuous genius. His conduct yesterday, when he
goaded Chris Kirkland after Arsenal’s equaliser against Wigan, a reaction
to Kirkland’s timewasting, was reprehensible in the extreme. As well as
being embarrassingly undignified - this was Wigan at home, not the
Champions League final, for heaven’s sake - it was also the second time
Henry has pulled this stunt in recent weeks, having done something similar
to Manchester United’s Gary Neville. There are some things you just do not
do on a football field, things that shatter the sense of fellowship,
however slender, that should always permeate a sporting contest: spitting,
going over the top - and goading someone who has just conceded a goal. It
is one of football’s unspoken laws: schadenfreude is not for sharing.

Goalscorers often say that, in the 10-second window after scoring, they do
not know where they are; that they lose it completely. The same applies to
those who concede. If scoring a goal is comparable to sex, then how can we
qualify conceding a goal? Like coitus interruptus? Like seeing your loved
one in an intimate pose with another? What is irrefutable is that, with the
exception of serious injury, it is the worst, most numbing sensation that
can be experienced on a football field and as such the sufferers should be
afforded some respect. That 10-second window is a no-go zone, a line you do
not cross. Henry’s antics were the football equivalent of trying to start a
fight at a funeral.

The unacceptable nature of Henry’s behaviour is confirmed by the paucity of
precedents. John Aldridge scrubbed Brian Laws’s hair after the latter had
scored an own goal in the replayed FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and
Nottingham Forest in 1989; a year earlier Nigel Winterburn screamed
deliriously in the face of Brian McClair after McClair lashed a last-minute
penalty over the bar at Highbury. That was the catalyst for an antipathy
between Arsenal and Manchester United that peaked at Old Trafford 15 years
later when Martin Keown decided to inform Ruud van Nistelrooy that he had
just missed a last-minute penalty, just in case he hadn’t realised.

It is frequently said that, because Henry is one of the world’s best
players, he does not need to resort to such juvenile behaviour. That is
irrelevant: it would be equally repugnant coming from Robbie Savage or Joey
Barton. But everybody seems surprised by Henry’s no-more-Mr-Nice-Guy
attitude. In reality, these antics are nothing new; Henry has always been a
politician off the field and a law unto himself on it. In 2001 he had to be
physically restrained from having a pop at the referee Graham Poll after a
defeat to Newcastle. Last May he made a complete fool of himself during and
after the Champions League final, missing the sort of one-on-one he usually
puts away in his sleep and then blaming the referee for Arsenal’s defeat
during a farcically irrational rant. And he is prone to rail against diving
one minute and feel his legs turn to jelly the next.

Even allowing for that, the incidents are becoming alarmingly commonplace.
This season he has been an intoxicating concoction of brilliance and
petulance. After the World Cup, one French team-mate referred witheringly
to Henry’s “enormous melon”. He then went out of his way to try to
undermine Arsne Wenger after being left out of the match against Spurs in
December, before appearing on the touchline to celebrate Emmanuel
Adebayor’s opening goal in a gesture so excruciatingly self-serving, so
transparently phony, that even a teenager would have baulked at it. Since
then we have had the incidents with Neville and Kirkland. As the likes of
Roger Federer, Andrew Flintoff and Tiger Woods have shown, greatness in
sport is defined by so much more than performance.

Perhaps all this is a manifestation of Henry’s frustration at his decision
to reject Barcelona in May, the angst of a man who erroneously chose to
stay in an increasingly loveless marriage and now has no way out. Perhaps
he is the rich man’s Matt Le Tissier, a big fish who does not have the
bottle or inclination to jump into a bigger pond, and resents his weakness.
Perhaps he is just getting old and grumpy.

Perhaps it’s just the way he has to be. The clich goes that, if you took
the fire from Steven Gerrard or Wayne Rooney’s belly, they would not be the
same player. The same arguably applies to Henry’s arrogance. But that does
not mean we should excuse it. Henry has spent years trying to change the
perception that he is a big-game bottler. Yesterday, he nailed the one
about him being the nicest guy in football once and for all.

His reaction to defeat in the Champions League final was pathetic. Celtic fans often quote his comments about Larsson being the best player on the night but to be honest they were part of such an irrational rant that I’d give them no credence.

I didn’t see the incident with Kirkland but I wouldn’t make too much of that. Plenty of players run to the oppostion crowd which is perhaps more offensive than just goading a player. I loved the understated nature of Bellamy’s celebration at Ibrox when he just knelt down in front of their supporters to soak up the abuse (he got booked for it even though he did nothing other than kneel on the pitch).

As well as the Forest incident (which I think people excused because it was just after Hillsborough and Aldridge was emotional) Aldridge also taunted Fernando Couto when he scored an own goal at Lansdowne if I recall correctly.

I only saw the Henry dive the day after, maybe his big fat head finally got too much for him.

Here’s a little thing I saw on F265 mediawatch

I’m not a woman so I stay on my feet" - Thierry Henry, May 17 2006.

“I don’t cheat” - Thierry Henry, June 28 2006.

Mind you, after this [url=]abysmal effort Mediawatch can’t argue with Henry’s angry rant after last year’s Champions League final that, “Maybe I should learn to dive.”

Or, more accurately, learn to dive better.

Oh yeah, I totally love a ‘get it right fooking up you’ moment like Bellamy did when it’s against your main and most hated rivals.

But goading the Wigan 'keeper is pathetic. Even after the equaliser he stood in front of Kirkland twice as he was kicking the ball out of his hands and trying to block him etc. Just being a blatant prick.

This comes after his toy throwing after the CL final and his hypocritical diving, especially against Spain, in the subsequent World Cup.

He’s a prick.

I remember the scally head of Aldo ruffling up the hair of Brian Laws - no way that had anything to do with him being emotional - that was pure cheekiness. Legend.

briantinnion, you must have been proud of your lads last night. They played some nice pass and move football for a 3rd tier side.

As an aside, when did Brian Tinnion get sacked/resign? I didn’t know that Johnson guy was managing Bristol City. He’s the ex Latvia coach afaik.