Robbo 10: W**kin Frankel - Click On My Face To Listen!

Monday, 28 April 2014

Bitten by the Blue Meanies

I dunno Brendan, you wait all season for a bus to come and then two come along at once.


As Sunday approached the feeling grew that this was going to be another of those Mourinho moments.


Liverpool were riding the crest of a wave of goodwill and genuine empathy and not even the most consummate practitioners of the cynical game plan could halt the juggernaut. Chelsea had barely anyone decent to pick from, they were tired, they couldn't win the League anyway, and Mourinho felt as sick as a dog. A perfect storm for crushing disappointment.


Of course this is half the story. The Blue Meanies simply do not have poor squad players. Mourinho may have overlooked the simpler fixtures his team has failed to win but put him up against the best and he zones in like a footballing Field Marshall Montgomery.


And if the game-plan involves being mean, immovable and more than a tad annoying well then that's just how Jose likes it. As I've said before his personal charisma is in inverse proportion to that of his teams.


It helped that Liverpool weren't very good on the day, but it was a little sad to see first Stevie Gerrard and then the team as a whole fall flat on their faces.


Chelsea's time-wasting was a miserable recourse but naturally it did the job. Liverpool's anticipated head of steam couldn't have loosened a stamp off an envelope. Chelsea took all the air out of the opposition and in the second half they deflated like a punctured paddling pool. The goals were very much a product of the home side's errors too.


It was the footy equivalent of the Rumble in the Jungle. The Blue Meanies just lay against the ropes and slowly but surely Liverpool punched themselves out before Willian delivered a sucker punch of his own. (Although clearly Ali was the good guy, whereas Chelsea have the Evil Genius on their side).


All of which left Brendan Rodgers unable to resist the odd side-swipe at his former boss. Stuff about 'trying to be offensive' (which always makes me smirk - Patrice Evra could probably tell you how successful Suarez has been at that in recent times), playing the game in a 'sporting' manner, and insisting that his team were the team that was 'playing to win', all left him looking like a decent gentleman who can't understand why someone's just mugged him.


Because it works, Brendan. That's why. It worked against Citeh - although they were much more attack-minded at the Etihad - and it worked against Atletico Madrid. I wouldn't want to play like that either. Or watch anyone else play like that. All the money that Chelsea throw at their squad and it could've been Tony Pulis in charge of that side. Which is actually a tad unfair on Tony.


But Mourinho is nothing if not realistic. And he's right. Chelsea won't win the title. He's gone and helped Citeh get it. Liverpool have to rely and that most unlikely source of support, Everton. After their comical defeat to Southampton all of Merseyside will be hoping that Martinez gets at least one of his central defenders back for next weekend or there'll be no escape from Alcaraz.


The fact that Yaya Toure is back makes me doubt Everton's chances. The man once again proved why he's the best all-round midfield player in the world at Palace. That second goal was typical of him, a one-man Gulliver trouncing across the park while the Lilliputians falling off him left right and centre. 


Of course Toure made it into the PFA Team of the Season, along with Adam Lallana which tells me that England team-mates will be delighted to have him there in Brazil. And of course Suarez, booed when his name was called out at last year's ceremony because he was still picking bits of Branislav Ivanovic out of his teeth, completed a remarkable path to redemption.


Players always insist that this award means the most, more than the Football Writers Award (which he'll also win). Suarez has been utterly peerless this season and what's more he doesn't without nibbling or needling the opposition and he's even cut down on the falling over a little bit. Like Didier Drogba before him, he's discovered how much better a player he can be when he's in a vertical position.


But little Luis shan't be getting the League title after all. When I read that the Liverpool fans were lining the road to the ground singing 'We're Going to Win The League' or 'We Are The Champions' or whatever you sing on these occasions - I'm a Boro fan how the hell would I know? - it all felt very premature indeed. And so it proved.


When Mourinho's around it doesn't do to get ahead of yourself. It's ironic that a man for whom many women (and a lot of men too, not just John Terry) swoon is the one bloke who constanly proves that when it comes to Premier League football, Romance Is Dead.


Not a happy ending.









152 comments:

  1. Wow... first for such a depressing (yet spot-on as ever) read. Perhaps you could write a wonderful post about how City will win the title? That should leave the race wide open for the run-in.

    In the end, no matter how annoying Mo's parked buses are to watch, I'd rather be on one and win than sit helplessly in a Porsche, waiting for the buses to move, watching my title hopes drive away. I might reconsider for a Ferrari, though.

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  2. Replies
    1. José Itaintso28 April 2014 at 12:59

      Why would writing about a new interim manager at a mid-table team be considered newsworthy?!

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    2. Difficult to see how the results in the last 4 games of the United season should have any bearing on whether Giggs should be appointed full time (he shouldn't). United need someone with a reputation to do the major surgery required.


      Jedi

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    3. Manchester United have a new caretaker. Happy now?

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    4. BBC Sport wet themselves enough over it. That ought suffice.

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  3. Great blog again Robbo, though Bells will be gutted (another blog about Maureen with NO PICCIES!). Tbh I kind of expected that to happen (and Chelski have form for this - the job they did on Bayern in the CL final in the Allianz was very much of Mourinho's making).

    Apparently Injurylawyers4U are interested in the news of a Scouser having a slip at work.


    Jedi

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    1. Excellent point about picture (or lack thereof) Jedi ....

      It hasn't escaped my notice either that in Robbo's blogs about City and Arsenal towards the end of March , again not a single photo of the Yummy One.

      I am genuinely torn between finding Gerrards slip hysterically funny and feeling bad for him. Sadly, a reflection on me perhaps, the amusement value is edging it .





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  4. Spot on. Fair play to Mourinho actually, he plays not to lose against rivals and if luck be on his side, he wins. Thats all that matters in the end, the points on the table.Devastated as I feel, it's more disappointment at our own luck running out, rather than Mourinho's tactics (though the ref pointing at his watch in the 6th minute was comical).

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  5. Good stuff Robbo. One of those rare occasions when the City of Liverpool won't be divided, when families can join together for the same team, when communities can be united. Up the Toffees! If they don't win it though, the enduring image of the season will be the England Captain on the deck, not good imagery for the trip to Brazil.

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  6. The Rope-A-Dope analogy was brilliant, Robbo. Especially for the second goal. Perhaps Liverpool should have mirrored them by going back to the Steam Age and lobbing some mortar-like balls from route one into the box in hopes of winning a penalty or a fortuitous bounce, but it's all hindsight.

    You're also quite right about Everton - a few weeks ago, I might have tried to cheer AH up and say the Toffees would have his back, but we need Jags and Distin in order to match City at Goodison (and perhaps also for Toure's strain to still be bothering him).

    Loved the Escape From Alcaraz line - I thought up one from Saturday that I'm sure Tim Howard may have uttered: Et tu, Seamus?

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    1. The toffees will have it tough as Lukaku seems to have done a Suarez and tailed off end of season. Mirallas has been the brightest spark of late and he is out for the season. Also, Everton play a bright attacking game and City do the same only better. Our only hope is an 18th century 8 man defence that lobs the ball forward to Andy Carroll. As it happens City still have to play West Ham and if that ends 0-0, we still are in with a chance. Assuming we get it together enough to beat Palace.

      I've done my bit for the toffees though. I've transferred Lukaku out of my FFL team, hoping that's enough for him to regain form.

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    2. Actually, Lukaku's been doing ok, it's just that he is relying on the walking wounded around him. As an Evertonian it is typical of our luck that we now have a pivotal role to play in whether or not Pool win the title. The game for us is a dead rubber barring a complete collapse by Arsenal, but it would be just typical for Citeh to have 833 shots on target without scoring, and we nick one in the 99th minute off Alcaraz's arse!

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  7. Cheers Robbo.

    Yep, yep, this season has more twists and turns then a particularly twisty and turny thingy. Ups and downs and rounds and rounds, ins and outs and shakes its all about, good stuff. The most surprising thing to me, is the fact that the "experts" keep calling it for, team x, only to say that team y are a shoo in the next week, well I'm afraid that team zzzzzzzzz has thrown another spanner in the works.

    Some will call it a tactical masterclass, I do not belong in that group. It's ruthless and it's calculated, but sitting back trying to kill a game, waiting for a mistake is no tactical genius, if it was then Sam Allydice would have Real Madrid begging him to lead them to glory.

    Team zzzzz, sorry Chelsea are the masters of this, against the so called better teams they are methodical and calculated, shame that the tactical genius can't seem to work out how to beat the likes of Palace, Villa and Sunderland.

    I can't see them winning the league this time around, but I'm not going to put any money on that, however I think they're worth a flutter for the CL, but if they are in the fnal I will not be looking forward to watching it.

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    1. Where do you all get the impression that its Chelsea's job to entertain you the neutrals...you want to get entertainment,go support a team and stop being neutral and if your team plays enough entertaining football for you,go watch them and leave chelsea alone to the supporters....

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    2. I've never been neutral in my life.

      Where did I say it was Chelsea's job to entertain anyone?

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    3. you all act like everytime chelsea plays,they have to put out a masterclass....nope they do not......you obviously think they should entertain you because you just complained about the style and how you will not watch them if they make it to the final...guess if they played like liverpool,you would watch them in the final? or maybe like Arsenal...oh yeah...what has that done for them lately

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    4. I think they're boring and even if you don't agree, like it or not football is a form of entertainment.

      Chelsea have been great to watch over the last few seasons, with the players that the other managers have brought in they could play an intricate attacking style, which they did. Maureen doesn't and if I think it's boring then I'll say that.

      I'm not sure where you are from, but you don't seem to have a sturdy grip of the english language, because you keep accusing me of things I haven't said. I said I wouldn't look forward to watching them in the final, not that I would not.

      Yes, yes, it's so true that Arsenal haven't won anything for a while, actually it's probably been since the oliegarches came in and took over little clubs and gave them an unfair advantage by pumping in ridiculous amounts of blood money from their ill gotten gains.

      By the by, even with the major investment, you're precious Chelsea could end up potless this season.

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    5. and the past seasons what were the positions??last year,we were 20 points...count it 20 POINTS OF THE TOP,embarassed by a disjointed juve team and still,lost to arsenal,got beat at home by utd twice, and you say this season has not been an improvement?

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    6. I didn't say anything of the sort.

      I said you could end up with nothing.

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    7. contrary to what most people think,as a chelsea fan and most of chelsea fans i know,we were not expecting to win jack this year to be honest with you...who wins anything with Torres as one of your main strikers

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    8. Yeah, who would expedt a 50 million quid striker to do anything???

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  8. why people try to paint Liverpool as a team coached by God with Jesus and the 12 disciples on the pitch really beats my imagination..is that the same team that has serial divers in Suarez,sterling and sturridge or miracle workers with Suarez(ala norwich)..we seem to forget sterling's shove on howard web,sturridge dive to get vidic sent off and lets not start on Suarez...whats annoying is the love-in the british media seems to have developed for Liverpool and trying to paint everybody else as devils.Good to see chelsea win and for all i can say,most people now find barcas' tiki-taka boring but it wasnt when it was new.

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    1. I thought the fawning over the Mickeys was pretty gut wrenching too. Just like all the sycophants that have been tongue punching Maureens poop box over the years, you don't seem to mind that though.

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    2. I had and still ahev a problem with it...all they do is try to create a market for themselves by creating what is not there.Most times.mourinho says facts but the way the ass kissers paint it make it seem like he has done something only a genius or an idiot could do

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    3. That pretty much sums up Gary Neville for me. Can't get how people think he's insightful in any way.

      It's not anything new with the media love-in for Liverpool - it's been going on for years. Remember when the BBC only had the rights to "Liverpool in Europe"? No other team ever had a programme like that.

      Mark Hughes was such a breath of fresh air getting stuck into those moaning pricks in Liverpool's defence who were so accustomed to being able to play the ball out of defence at their own pace. It's ironic considering how those self-same pricks, once they became pundits seemed to think that was fine when employed against Arsenal. God, I hated them in the 70's, the 80's the 90's the 2000's and now.

      Also, remember the fact that the media thought that Carragher coming out of retirement would have been good for England. Now if that's not a Liverpool love-in I don't know what is. The man can't kick a moving ball.

      As we have Stevie-self defence- Gerrard as England captain then we should have some big lads up front for him to spray his "searching" passes to...

      Look what you've started. As you can probably tell that I'm a non-bitter Arsenal fan.

      Rastafairy.

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    4. lol.......true that on the bbc...they are bashing their heads over the win by chelsea and thats what actually gratifies me more than anything else.as a chelsea fan,i would love to go swagger out and smash teams like pumpkins but lets be realistic,you think the officials would have allowed chelsea a chance yesterday if we came out and make a few mistakes....you saw what happened with the handball they never called yesterday but liverpool happened to get the callin their favor against utd and westham

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  9. breaking news; Allardyce to replace Ancelotti at Madrid!

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  10. He would have more success with their players that Ancellotti would have with WHU's.

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  11. I see Suarez has won the PFA award. I must admit that he probably deserves it.

    Interesting stat though, from his seven appearances against the other teams in the top 4 this season, he didn't manage a single goal.

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    1. Did he also not manage any assists? I honestly don't know the answer to that question, but if he did, then imho, that's good enough to prove he has what it takes against the big teams. I also do not remember the last time the golden boot winner (if he ends up being that) also has the most assists for the season in the League. Or the golden boot winner not being the one taking the penalties. (Or indeed the golden boot winner dropping all semblance of form in the run-in, but we'll let that one go for now).

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    2. Maybe he needs Sturridge. Or perhaps he feeds off his misbehavior. A dive might sustain him a while. If nibbling Ivanovic (great band name, by the way) led to this, I wonder what he's got planned for to set up next season...

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    3. He was the best player in the PL, easily.


      Just thought it was interesting that he didn't score (what he's best at) against the other top teams.

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    4. I was once at a Nibbling Ivanovic concert. Had a great opening act by Slippin' Stevie.

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  12. GOAL - Arsenal 2-0 Newcastle - Mesut Ozil (41 mins)
    -----------------------------------------------------
    And that I guess is 4th place wrapped up. If Arsenal can add the FA Cup to that, which they most likely will, they will probably be the happiest team at the end of the season. Truth be told, that should be Liverpool, seeing our position last season, but coming so close to the title makes even 2nd (or 3rd) a disappointment.
    Also, means Everton won't have much incentive in their game against City.

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    1. If Chelski win the CL, they'll be the happiest. Rest of football won't be. Sadly have to agree with H2 on this. Very dull to watch, but effective.



      Jedi

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  13. GOAL - Arsenal 3-0 Newcastle - Olivier Giroud (66 mins)
    ---------------------------------------------
    Trotts, what are the odds on Pardew being the next to get the sack?

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    1. It was a cunning plan from Arsenal not to score four just in case Newcastle came back to equalise.

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    2. *Grits teeth*: I think it's St Totteringham's day, so congrats H2 and all Gooners on here.

      At least it's getting later in the season.


      Jedi

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    3. Cheers Jedi......

      But it's actually earlier, the previous two being on the last day of the season.

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    4. Fair point: I was comparing it to a few years ago (when it was practically mid January). Given the transfer activity last summer, if we can keep the team together (17 of the squad are 25 or under) it should improve next season.


      Jedi

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  14. couple of typo's in there Robbo. BTW was Ali really the good guy ? I'm not so sure, with all his mud-slinging against Foreman and Frazier too. Not really very sporting. Very much like Mourinho in fact !

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  15. A few thoughts.

    Maureen set his team out to stifle the opposition and it worked.Brendan hasn't had the opportunity to moan for a while,but every time they lose he's just as bad as the rest of them.

    A lot of my City supporting customers still think they'll lose to Everton as they are,apparently,City's bogey team (As opposed to Ipswich,where we have 91 bogey teams.All joking aside,there's no such thing).

    As for football being entertainment,that ship sailed long ago.It's all about results.If you can get them playing like Un**ed of 2008 then all the better,but money has made it a results only business now.Maureen may be an arse,but he plays the game win or lose better than most.

    Having said that,the meeja that fawned over his every utterance in his first spell at Chelsea have now cottoned onto the fact he spouts shite (pretty much like every other manager does,so he's not alone.Just better at it.The "reserve" team he sent out against Liverpool still cost over £100 millions.)

    And finally my least popular point,Palace may have become a bit more up and at 'em under Pulis,but they play decent stuff with two attacking wingers.He's turned Chamakh (if that how it's spelt) into a decent centre forward and made Puncheon an outside bet for international honours.Sadly all managers become tarred with a certain brush and it sticks.

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    1. Pulis should get manager of the season for what he's done at Palace.



      Jedi

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    2. I disagree. I think Moyes should get the award for what he did to United.

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    3. I feel a bit sorry for Moyes actually, if any job had "poisoned chalice" as its description...

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  16. Some thoughts on this thread:
    Maureen is a tactical genius, fair play to him. All clubs in the Prem would bite his hand off if he wanted to be their manger, admit it!
    I'm an Evertonian, and it galls that our season is turning into what we can (or more likely, can't) do for our neigbours.
    Pool have been the best team this season, and if they win it, they've deserved it...did I really just say that? ;)
    Why are there so many ex-Pool players as pundits? It would be nice to get through a weekend's TV reportage without seeing a single ex-Pool player going all gooey and sycophantic about that team.
    Why have the meeja in general always been in love with Liverpool FC?
    ...and finally, Gerrard falling over was comedy gold! Even funnier than Alcaraz's tremendous header!

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  17. Hi Jacks.

    Football has always been a results business, although in todays cut throat world the price of failure, or even percieved failure is swift dismissal. But beyong that, it still boils down to being an entertainment industry, Forget about merely the games, the whole fanfare around it is purely to pull in the punters, bums on seats and sold subscriptions, not to mention the millions in shirts, merchandising and the likes. Football has transended the world of sport, it is in it's purest form an entertainment industry.

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    1. 'ello H.

      I think the entertainment side was once true,but sadly not any more.It is purely a results driven business.I think it boils down to watching a game as a neutral or as a fan of one of the teams.I'd love to see a 4-3 win tonight in the CL,fast flowing football etc etc (Although watching any Guardiola team is like a pint of night-nurse with a whisky chaser) but I don't care how Ipswich win.Win first,then we'll see about the pretty stuff.

      I accept your point of view,however I think football puts results 1st,entertainment 2nd,whereas the fans want both.

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  18. before the season reaches a shuddering climactic end, I'd like to extend my thanks to Jacks for his prem ffl management and Stephen for organizing the greatest championship fantasy football league in the history of mankind.

    How are you and AH doing in your weekly MLS H2H league?

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    1. Thanks, Trottsky. MLS looking similar to Championship. I'm on track for continental qualification from MLS, but the other three are, too...

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    2. At least you'll make the semis!

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    3. Yeah, cheers, Stephen and Jacks - I managed to claw my way up to 5th in the Championship. Was hoping to overhaul Smash 'N Grab for 4th, but as an Evertonian, 5th seems about right.

      The less said about my total lack of involvement in the Premier League FFL, the better. :)

      I'll try harder next year!

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  19. 'i can't wait until we're teenagers then we'll be happy'

    ~millhouse

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  20. Real Madrid are an awesome opponent when they have bale, ronaldo, modric and di maria all firing in the same game.Imagine if they poach suarez over the summer.

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    1. I think he'd taste bettter fried sunny side up.

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    2. I don't think he has a sunny side.

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    3. Holloway2Hanibal, how about sauteed in a white wine and garlic reduction?

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  21. Trott.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iVlkZVAw8Gc

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    1. and did you wash it down with a De Schans Vollenhoven’s Stout?

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  22. Guardiola's rep was deleted last night that's for sure. I couldn't believe how badly prepared they looked or the naivety off the Bayern defending, e.g. a high line against the must famously frighteningly quick pair of forwards in world football ever? No plan B when it inevitable went wrong. Absolutely shit bit of strategy, pep. Mourinho will be a different proposition if they beat atletico, who I know nothing about whatsoever. Real will win it though, obviously.

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    1. Beckenbauer has had his doubts about Guardiola for a long time.I think his reputation springs from the fact he had Messi and Iniesta in his team.Anyone could manage a team with them in "Right lads,win the ball and give it to one of those two."The Bayern of last season was a much more direct and aggressive team whereas this new Barca style really doesn't suit the players they've got.I doubt Atletico or Chelsea would allow Real so much room for Ronny and the rest to play in.

      In other news,I think Sergio Ramos is an even bigger twat than John Terry.And that's saying something!

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    2. I'll agree with a lot of that lads, however I feel there's more to it.

      Bayern have no competition in their domestic league, which is partly of their own doing due to hoovering up all their rivals best players year on year. They had the Bundesliga wrapped up weeks ago so have no real competitive games unlike Real who are in a three way tussle for the title.

      I think Pep got it drastically wrong last night, but I wouldn't write him off just yet, he's been a manager for approx 5 years in which he's won 17 major honours. The same all conquering Barca team that he managed is not exactly setting the world alight this year under new management now are they? Messi, Xavi, Iniesta are all still there aren't they?

      The two Ramos goals settled that tie, it was all but over after thirty minutes, the rest just looked like they were all goung through the motions.

      Pep was gracious in defeat and admitted he had made mistakes, no mind games, no hissy fits, no blame shifting.

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  23. awwww c'mon Robbo..No word for Moyes????

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  24. I am getting quite excited about the match tonight. I'll be here in the bar with the tv on in the background, ready to take it all in. In my opinion there is one clear favourite to win, what with all the experience of having won the whole kaboodle before and knowing what it takes to prevail under pressure.

    But enough about Ronnie O’Sullivan v Shaun Murphy, who do you think will prevail in the CL semi?

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    1. I think it will be 0-0 after extra time, they'll all miss every penalty and the match will go to a rite break snooker match with Jose triumphing after parking a dinky die, cast mussel of a team bus over every pocket and the athletico coach who ever the Fuck he is hangs himself from the lampshade in a for of despairing ennui. That's my predo anyway.

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    2. To be honest, to 'save' my liver and lungs, I think I would prefer to watch the snooker tonight.

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    3. I have to say Bloggy, I know I live a sheltered life, but I have never seen a dinky die cast mussel before?

      Anyway if I must do everything myself on here

      https://twitter.com/FootballFunnys/status/461441114055389184/photo/1


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    4. as the first leg of my three legged triangular, snooker frame/slice of pie, shaped, prediction (henceforth known as Jake) has already come to fruition (RM stuffin' the Krauts), the second and third legs will surely come to pass, ie, Chelsea go through and Bale scores the winner in the final (in off a blue). No point watching really but as England's representative and with an ex-Trotter in the ranks, I'll be rooting for Bells and the Blue Meanies. Until next time when I'll be surrounded by daffodils boyo.

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    5. Fair play to you Trotts

      Not entirely sure am happy with 'Jake' , IF we get through to the final, we may have distract Bale with pictures of sheep (no Welsh sterotyping at all) and Ronaldo with a few mirrors and pots of hair gel to keep him occupied

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    6. that could peg Jake back a bit.

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    7. Is that Alan Sugar, Bells?


      Jedi

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  25. I broke my bloody teeth on one of them die cast mussels, bells.

    And that had better not be a link to a pic of Mourinho.anyway I'm not risking it.

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    1. it is Blog, big shit eatin' grin on his face as he pilots a double decker around West London, nightmares await, clickers beware.

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    2. You wait a while s for a defender and then six turn up at the same time. Thankfully I'm too skint too afford either sky sports or£75 for a ticket to watch a footballing reenactment of the Alamo.

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  26. ....our more accurately, a footballing reenactment of the world watching blue paint dry championships.

    Thing is with Maureen that add soon add you say that kind of thing, he puts in three strikers......let's see, let me know. I'm off to the pub.

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    1. don't bother, there's a bus parked across the bar.

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  27. Forgot the parking brake on the bus. Oops.

    Now to hope Atletico top Real. They certainly deserved to beat Chelsea.

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  28. GOAL
    Chelsea 1-3 Atletico Madrid (Agg: 1-3) - Arda Turan
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    All Madrid finals then. Atletico still on track for a CL/LL double. Irrespective of what happens from now on, they're definitely the European Team and Manager of the season.

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    1. Simeone has done a fantastic job at Atletico, no doubt. They're competing with teams (Real and Barca) who get 3x as much money as them (thanks to individual TV deals in Spain). You can only do that with great teamwork.


      Jedi

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  29. fuckin one legged Jake. How was the snooker, H?

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    1. Sorry, couldn't tell ya,

      Been enjoying the footy too much.

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    2. Hey Unknown.

      Chelsea certainly entertained me tonight.

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  30. Wonders of our press part 94.

    The Times today.

    Maureen quote.

    "The Atletico goalkeeper makes an impossible save,and instead of 2-1 to Chelsea a few seconds later there's a penalty,which I'm happy people tell me was a penalty.I'm not particularly frustrated.He's the Atletico goalkeeper playing for Atletico,and he did his job".

    Headline to this piece?

    Mourinho claims loan deal has cost Chelsea their place in the final.

    Twats.

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    Replies
    1. There's a degree of truth in the claim that the deal cost them a place of course - it's that mean malicious truth-twisting word "claim" that reveals the dark mendacity of the professional journalist/liar. You're right Jacks it's habitual and brings journalism into disrepute. Kierkegaard said he'd rather have a sister in a brothel than a brother who worker for his local newspaper. Pity really - it ought to be a noble profession.

      Mind you clubs never loan players out to any club they imagine might beat them in an important fixture do they - but thats the measure of Simeone's achievement at Atletico.

      Hope they win it now, but Bale/Ronaldo are unstoppable.

      Delete
    2. My Brother works for a local paper and my sister, well, we don't talk about her.......

      Delete
  31. Well the two pluses from last night are

    Last time Chelsea were in Champions League final , I had hangover from hell , so that has now been avoided

    Mr BHB has so far failed to notice I inadvertently dyed his white shirt a rather fetching shade of pink

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Domestic note.

      You can get dye removers from the shops now BHB.

      As opposed to Dai removers who are desperately trying to send the Welsh back home.

      Delete
  32. This Danny Alves banana incident has been good for the game, well done to him but I'm wondering if somebody throws a sheep on the pitch at Gareth Bale will he bang it before taking the corner?

    ReplyDelete
  33. And what will Suarez do if someone lobs an Ivanovich or a Bakkal onto the pitch before a free kick?

    ReplyDelete
  34. It could get ugly if someone send his granny on the pitch to taunt Rooney

    ReplyDelete
  35. Trotts, thanks for naming Ream Bolton's Player of the Year. Now if only you could keep Holden healthy.

    Though I do like what Norwich fans' nominee...
    http://www.sbnation.com/soccer/2014/4/30/5669364/norwich-player-of-the-season-2014-carlo-nash

    ReplyDelete
  36. H - above, yes his record at Barca and now strolling to victory in the bundesliga is incredible. But he's no Mourinho (cant beleive I just typed that) or at least hasnt proven he's of comparable ability - Messi, Iniesta and Xavi still there but the latter two are approaching the end and messis been injured.

    H you said.."Pep was gracious in defeat and admitted he had made mistakes, no mind games, no hissy fits, no blame shifting."

    Again true but its shifting a bit now. I've no idea what he actually said but his reaction to the criticism hes getting in Germany from people like Beckenbauer will make worrying reading for bayern fans. Not quite a hissy fit but back me or sack me isnt far off (IF thats what he actually said of course)

    http://www.theguardian.com/football/2014/may/02/pep-guardiola-bayern-munich-right-man

    He got his tactics wrong v real and presumably wont make that mistake again, but as I said it must have worried a few people that when it clearly wasnt working he stuck with it. His view seems to be you know my philosophy and Im sticking with it. What if you need a Messi and a Xavi and an Iniesta to make it work though?

    Instant results and instant sacking is the new normal. It just leaves about 6 managers with reputations big enough to be bullet-proof, endlessly recycling around the top clubs. No one else is ever good enough for the owners and the fans.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Eden Hazard not ready to sacrifice himself for Chelsea - Jose Mourinho
    =========================================
    Hazard has just Lukaku'd himself. Roberto Martinez won't believe his luck, though PSG is more a likely destination for Hazard.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh f*ck. No Mata, no Hazard, no Lukaku, soon no Luiz. As if Mo thinks anyone who could possibly play interesting football shouldn't be allowed to stay. Why would any player have the death wish of winning an award?

      So we're supposed to win the league next year by scoring 50 goals and conceding 10? We can play a 2x4-2 in which we park two buses of four in front of Cech (or Courtois... or both?!) and play Willian or Schurrle and a random 'striker' (if we aren't allowed to play two keepers). We'll take a cue from Big Sam for our goals. Wonder if Andy Carroll is available...

      Surely if he runs off Hazard, Roman has to call him to the carpet. Jose wins, Jose intimidates, but Jose can't win or intimidate without good players to back him up. And he won't have any left if he keeps selling them out. The only reason to put up with Jose is to win trophies. If there are no trophies, there might as well be someone somewhat reasonable in charge. Not advocating the sack, but I do hope he'll stop short of pissing off every good player we already have while discouraging others from signing.

      Delete
    2. Only if PSG aren't hit by a sanction for breaking FFP rules...........

      Yeah, I know, it won't happen.

      Delete
  38. Blogidy.

    Beckenbauer's always been a bit of a dick. Van Gaal won the double and got to a CL final with Bayern, that didn't stop him from getting the heave ho at the first sign of a blip the following season. I'm not sure what he expected to get when he hired Pep, he almost invented the tikky takky, it's what he knows best, he believe it works and the results, bar the Real game, speak in his favour.

    Personaly, even against Arsenal, I thought they looked vulnerable when being run at. we over ran them at the start of the game at the grove, if Ozil had converted that penalty who knows what would of happened, we were on level terms with them until we went a man down and even at their place they only managed to draw against us.

    You're right about the instant result/sacking situation, it's madness, but it's the way it is. Pep inherited a team that had just won the league, some may think that it was an easy take over and success was guarenteed, I believe David Moyes would beg to differ though.

    Last week Mourinihio was a genius for sitting back and hitting L'pool on the counter, a few days later the pan didn't work and all of a sudden he's not so great anymore, that;s just the way the meedja work, as Jacks pointed out above, even the most inoculate statements can be twisted for maximum sensationalism, it's sad but it's all part and parcel designed to outrage the hard of thinking.

    I must admit to taking agreat deal of joy at watching the Chavs capulate, when the equaliser went in, I squeled the second had me giggling like a school girl, the third goal full on wet pants, at the final whistle the shot of the tearful terry just put the icing on a particularly yummy cake, I know schadenfreude is a bit petty, but I don't care, at that moment I was Tom Petty in a petticoat. I awaited eagerly for what I thought would be the cherry on top, the post match interviews, but Jose came out and was totaly magmanamus, damn him, kind of took a bit of the shine off...... just a little bit though. Seriously, fair play to him for that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh yeah, magnanimous until beating up on Hazard. Somehow he seems to think if he can't sh*t on his opponents or the ref, he has to sh*t on his players.

      Okay, Hazard made a mistake. Yes, it cost them a goal. But the match wasn't over, and he just sh*t on someone without whom we never would have been there in the first place.

      BHB! Go set him straight! The Yummy One is becoming The Bitter One...

      Delete
    2. Hazard made some not so clever comments. Mou swiftly hammered him for it.

      Delete
    3. Yes, but who will hammer Mo when he makes not so clever comments?

      Mo's tactics have rarely suited Hazard, who usually (mostly) fit himself into the system. Yes, Hazard should not have spoken the truth to the media, but Mo generalized too far from one situation.

      Delete
  39. No one. Mourinho is the boss. Hazard isn't. Mou's comments were ugly, I love hazard, but you just can't speak out against your manager publicly.

    Look what happened to moyes with all the leaks and outright defiance.

    ReplyDelete
  40. Agreed. But still... how many top players can he run off before none will be willing to replace them? Bad enough our most convincing appeal to a striker is "you're better than the sh*t we've got so if we deign to go forward, you might score... and if you don't score--even if you never have the ball--then you're sh*t, too."

    ReplyDelete
  41. Maureen was gracious in defeat.

    Hazard made a silly statement.

    He then gets publicly slapped down.

    All in all, more wood to fuel the fires of my shadenfreude.

    ReplyDelete
  42. hahahaha Zac fuckin' Efron beat Lawro.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Anyone else notice that Robbo looks about to crumble because of the cookie policy?

    ReplyDelete
  44. Are you sayin' that's the way the cookie crumbles?

    ReplyDelete
  45. Sherwood out. Spurs losing to West Ham means Everton's Europa place is confirmed, giving them even less to play for against City.

    Also, West Ham fans cannot possibly have any grouse against Fat Sam. Downing with an assist and a goal in the same game? That's just amazing.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Anybody want to complain about Moyes now?

    RESCUE RYAN

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pretty darn awesome job from Poyet. Who would'a thought 7 pts from away games to City, Chelsea and United would see them to safety (almost). It looks like Norwich will join Cardiff and Fulham.

      Delete
    2. That could have been 3-0 to Sunderland. Great stuff.

      Delete
    3. "I feel flat, the players were flat and I don't know why," said Giggs.

      Somebody at OT needs to change the record (or for you kids out there, change the iPod from loop to shuffle). Gotta admit, it's pretty nice not being conflicted about despising ManUre again...

      Delete
    4. Giggs and Sherwood stick with the Brits and good ol' 4-4-2. I sure hope they're around next year so we can write off Man Utd & Tottenham.

      Delete
  47. Get your act together in the second half you fuckin toffees.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There will be a minimum of...20...minutes of added time due to Dzeko lying on the deck. Oh, the lad's back on the pitch, running about as if nothing has happened, occasionally rubbing the shoulder that I think the trainer inadvertently injured while "treating" him. Is the ephitet I'm looking for "tosser," or "wanker?"

      Delete
  48. Sorry, AH - less for Liverpool than for our last sliver of hope for 4th place departing. Think your best hope lies with Big Sam now...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Would be pretty ironic if somehow Andy Carroll won the league for Liverpool.

      Delete
    2. As I mentioned earlier in the comments, I always knew Big Sam's Hammers had a better shot at taking points off City than Everton, simply because Everton play an open game, which suits City's style. Anyway, barring a miracle its all but over, just hope we beat Palace to secure 2nd place.

      Delete
    3. Indeed. And thanks for ending Lukaku's goal drought by dropping him from your FF squad. :)

      Delete
  49. It will not surprise to see West Brom win today. They are fighting for survival while we have little to play for thanks to Citeh beating the toffees yesterday.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Strange how Norwich have found themselves as good add relegated with a strike force of elmander and van wolfswinkle

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. that was the best I've ever seen El Mandy play. He's reaching his peak.

      Delete
  51. Ed Cumming in the telegraph about applying the Mourinho Method to your personal life.....

    In a restaurant: always have a voucher. In fact, take two vouchers, and argue aggressively if the staff say they can't be used in tandem. Order the food with the lowest markup. Eat at least half of your dish before claiming it is undercooked/overcooked/not what you ordered. Ask for a different dish, repeat the process. Remove optional service charges. If at any point you are bored, complain to your partner that the standard of conversation is not what you expected and shrug.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Mo Mummies, Mo Problems approach to parenthood:

      Whenever your child fails to achieve perfect marks at school while win every athletic event (including those in other age groups), blame the ignorant teachers, the horrendous state of education in the nation, your spouse's poor genes, your child's suspect friends, and your child's lazy attitude. Leave to parent other children until they, too, fail you. Return, repeat.

      Delete
    2. Winning... while winning. Guess Jose would bench me for not tracking back to edit my work.

      Delete
  52. Not only does The 'Specially Wan have us playing boring football, he doesn't even play the best available side. Maybe when he said we wouldn't win the title he had already planned to make sure we didn't.

    Watch... he'll sell Hazard, Luiz, Cech, Torres, Ba, and Mikel. (Okay, the last three, maybe even four, can go.) He'll bring in Diego Costa, Neymar, Messi, Cavani, Ronaldo, Bale, and Suarez... then promptly never play any of them because they don't track back to the byline literally every time the opposition has the ball. Or perhaps he'll start them on the bench every match, then bring on three of them for the second half so he can claim his substitutions make him a tactical genius when we win 1-0 because somehow one of subs came within 50 yards of the goal and lobbed the keeper. (Had he missed, he would have been pulled off despite the fact there no subs remained.)

    Yes, I know there was a context to this... Hazard mouthed off, Luiz doesn't play Mourinho's style, we can't win the title... but still. If you're going to play less than your best, let it be because you're blooding the three freshly-poached youngsters you haven't loaned out and/or forgotten about.

    ReplyDelete
  53. i'd rather watch BBC live text commentary on snooker than Chelsea.

    ReplyDelete
  54. Ross Barkley has to be a starter for England otherwise I'm not watching the World Cup (England games at least). Preferably alongside a load of other young, talented players (Wilshere, AOC, Sterling, Lallana). But I'm not holding out much hope for our squad.
    Rastafairy

    ReplyDelete
  55. Good god, just took a look at CR7's equaliser yesterday. The man is simply sensational, I've gone from absolutely despising him a few years ago, to now believing he might be one of the greatest ever.

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2051243-cristiano-ronaldo-scores-absurd-goal-to-salvage-a-draw-for-real-madrid

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's amazing how likeable someone becomes when they're not wearing a Utd shirt.

      Delete
  56. Captain Knight released by Bolton.
    ----------------------------------------------
    Captain Knight would be an awesome name for an Avenger.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Poor Bugger. Hopalong Knight would be more relevant at this stage. If he was a horse they'd have shot him last season.

      Delete
  57. Mourinho said - "Against teams that are more defensive, more aggressive, more worried about trying to keep a clean sheet than really to play, we keep saying the same."
    =============================
    Really Jose? There are teams that are defensive and dont really try to play? What a shocker.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just West Ham. Certainly no others.

      Delete
  58. 3-0. 3-3. Whoa... Finish 7-6?

    ReplyDelete
  59. Big Sam can save you too AH!

    ReplyDelete
  60. I was watching last nights game live in the bar, but thee was a group that wanted to watch something else so I obliged them and turned the channel at HT knowing that I recorded MOTD so could catch it later.

    The way Lineker introduced the game I thought that there may be a shock on the cards, well a shock table wise, I had predicted a draw, but with the Mickeys 3-0 up with 12 mins to go I thought it was done and dusted.....
    That was some capulation.

    ReplyDelete
  61. I can't really complain I guess. I've been applauding Liverpool's gung-ho attitude all through the 11 game winning streak, that included the 4-3, 5-3 and 3-2 wins agains Swansea, Stoke and Fulham. The fact that we refuse to defend no matter what the score and keep pouring forward was something I proudly pointed out to all my mates. Well, I want to say that with the title at stake and 2 games to go, we should have introduced Agger and not Coutinho in 75th minute, but that would be hypocrisy based out of hindsight. We live and die by the sword, and so be it. We may not win shit this way, but it sure as hell is fun. In other words, we are the new Arsenal (now that the gunners have all but sewn up the FA Cup, I guess a new candidate was needed anyway).

    ReplyDelete
  62. Our defensive stalwart for the past several games (barring the slip) was Gerrard, but he was so far forward trying to make up the 9 goal difference himself, it was funny.

    At least now, the last 12 minutes of this game is what people will be talking about rather than Stevie's slip.

    Atletico, Real and Barca all slipping up in the La Liga run in. Exciting stuff
    everywhere you look.

    ReplyDelete
  63. AH.

    I tipped man Citeh to win it from the off and I've stuck with that all season (I'm not Robbie Savage, after all), but I still feel L'pool have been the best team to watch.

    No matter what, I think Rodgers deserves to be named manager of the year, he's turned your club around and brought an attacking brand of football that deserves all the plaudits it gets, he's engineered a remarkable turnaround, from 7th to serious title challengers is extreamly impressive. I understand those that want to see Pulis win it and while I also acknowledge he has done a sterling job, I still believe Rodgers deserves it more.

    ReplyDelete