Random football comment

Well, it’s not entirely random.  It will be thought-out and specifically about certain events or people.

Mad Rafa

He’s still bleating on about not being able to sign Gareth Barry.  It seems the board do not share his view that Gareth Barry is good value for money and don’t believe that he is needed to compete for the Premier League title.  Rafa was given the money to sign Mohamed Sissoko and Xabi Alonso; he sold Sissoko after getting an unbelievable offer from Juventus for a complete train wreck of a player and he does not deem Alonso to be the player he needs after all.

On this form you can understand the board being hesitant to sanction £18m they can ill-afford on a player who won’t have the sell on value in 3 years time at the age of 30.  They are probably also looking at other areas of the pitch (the center of defence, the wings) and thinking that the money is best spent there.

Rafa is using the media to snipe at the owners and get his own way.  It’s a poor reflection on a man who has increasingly gone down in my estimation over the years.  He rarely has anything sporting to say about opponents and his well-documented team rotation is the stuff of legend.  I’m looking forward to seeing Robbie Keane’s face as he is substituted on 70 minutes in every game he starts (which will probably only be about three-quarters of them).

Champions league obsession

Barry wants to play Champions League football.  Why do players have a Champions League obsession anyway?  The best teams are English and you get to play them every season no matter what Premier League team you play for.  Plus, midweek, when you’re probably tired, you don’t have to spend a day travelling, dragging your luggage around airports to play a meaningless game in Warsaw.

Chelsea

Everyone is going on about how good Chelsea are.  It was one game against a rudderless-looking Portsmouth side whose manager pretty much admitted that he can’t get take them any further.

Lovely Berbatov

Dimitar is an enigmatic player.  Apparently he is supremely professional in the sense that he’s a loner who likes the quiet life (not likely to find him on Ben Alnwick’s next roasting video).  But he sulleys this with his constant desire to leave Tottenham almost ever since he moved there.

The irritating thing is that he’s a world class player who in today’s market is horrendously undervalued by Man U.  I’m always reminded of a sketch that Fantasy Football did involving Frank Clark (the then-Nottingham Forest boss) having a portrait of star striker Stan Collymore valued by the Antiques Road Show: “Well if Paul Furlong is worth £2.3m then I’d say this beauty is worth about £180m”.

United will pay £20m for Hargreaves and £18m for Carrick but won’t pay £28m for Berbatov?  They paid £19m for Ruud van Nistelroll (sic) when he was 25 – and just after a serious knee ligament injury – seven years ago.  But the going rate for one of Europe’s top strikers is out of their reach.  They are willing to pay a hugely-inflated figure of £32m for the inflated figure of Carlos Tevez rather than the considered genius of Berbatov?

Maybe this is just Fergie getting his own back for the smash-and-grab we did on the gentle, unthreatening Michael Carrick.

Carrick in "action"
Carrick in "action"
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