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Transfer window winner
Looks like it’s Mino Raiola, again.
Mark C, London
Chelsea have cocked up again
It amazes me how both Michael Emenalo (academy programme and scouting) and Marina Granovskaia (player ‘transactions’) still have jobs at Chelsea. Both have consistently under-performed over recent years and yet again they are costing us early on in the transfer market. We already lost out on Lukaku and now both Sandro and Bakayoko look under threat. It cost us two years ago and we got very lucky last year with panic buy Alonso.
Our Academy performance over recent years has also cost us. Ruining rough young diamonds Bamford, Boga, Musonda, Kakuta, etc. We’ve already lost Solanke to Liverpool and last year Domingos Quina to West Ham. Without a pathway Loftus-cheek, Clarke-salter, Tomori, Tammy A, Maddox etc will not fulfil potential/leave young to other clubs. I worry Christensen will soon follow after two good years at Borussia Monchengladbach once he sees limited opportunities.
Mourinho was to blame for much of this lack of youth progression kicking out great young players as he can’t develop youth (Lukaku, Matic, De Bruyne, etc). But the strategy lies with Emenalo.
Both Emenalo and Marina need to go. It’s no wonder that Conte is pi**ed – the team responsible for getting quality players utterly useless. Suddenly his contract extension seems unlikely.
If only we could swap in Sabatini…..
A frustrated Blue.
Sanchez for £80m? Okay…
Up until now, my opinion on the Sanchez situation has been that we should keep him for a final season and turn down £50 million from a main competitor. The main thinking is that he is not the kind of player who will refuse to play and will always give his all. 50 million is not really enough to replace a player like that, so we may as well get the benefit of him for another season.
Also, if he refuses to sign the new deal he has been offered, we actually save £8 million a season, so that helps offset the lost money.
However, if we can get 80 million for a player on the last year of his contract, then it becomes a lot more tempting. Especially when you consider that he has played in a summer tournament for four seasosn in a row now, so surely must be due an injury or loss of form from over-playing. Not that I would wish that upon him of course.
It will be interesting to see what Arsenal do and if he does go I won’t mind too much as long as the money we get is reinvested well. Lemar would be a pretty sexy purchase if we can make it happen.
Adonis (Sanchez, Aguero, Sane, Silva and De Bruyne would be quite a scary front line though) Stevenson, AFC
So long Wayne Rooney!
I was at the match in 2004 when United ended ‘the Invincibles’ run. He was raw and terrorised Arsenal. Over the next 13 years nobody can argue what he has done for the club. A superb signing for United. His pros far away the cons.
But nostalgia only gets you so far in football/ life and this led to the tide turning against him over the last few years. I hope the move to Everton works for Rooney. Last year he was brutal to watch, laboured and bored. If used correctly, he can give something to this changing Everton side.
And now we enter the new age, Lukaku. He has the ability. He sulks. He can go missing for a few weeks and not score but he is a good signing. When you look at world football, strikers are definitely the position where there is a limited pool of signings. Arsenal have taken a chance. While Morata may be sexier, Lukaku has done it in England. Other than Kane he is the best option. I’m pretty excited.
There’s my musings of a wet Sunday in Galway.
Cormac, (Barry to West Brom – perfect!), Galway
Thank you, Wayne Rooney
1. Thank you for your hat-trick against Fenerbahce on your debut. As the commentator rightly said as you curled in your free kick, it was inevitable, and some things just were meant to be.
2. Thank you for the ‘dive’ against Arsenal, ending their 49-match unbeaten run. As a 12 year old, I remember rubbing that in my Arsenal-supporting father’s face for days on end.
3. Thank you for your thunderous volley against Newcastle, scored in the most casual manner while on the verge of being substituted. That truly summed up the raw talent you possessed, and the anger that fuelled it all.
4. Thank you for your partnership with Cristiano Ronaldo post the 2006 World Cup which led to, arguably, the most memorable league season for many United fans. The 5-1 annihilation of Fulham on the opening day of that season will live long in the memory as one of the most ruthless opening 20 minutes to a football match.
5. Thank you for the counter-attack with Ronaldo against Bolton. Nine touches of the ball in 11 seconds from one end of the pitch to the other was absolute footballing perfection.
6. Thank you for the last-minute winner against AC Milan at home in the Champions League semi final even though we eventually were humiliated in the second leg. It gave us immense hope and set up our success for the next season perfectly.
7. Thank you for scoring the third in the 4-2 win against Everton which near guaranteed our success that season. Still one of my favourite matches to date.
8. Thank you for being a crucial part of one of the most attacking trios in Premier League history. The holy trinity of Rooney, Ronaldo, and Tevez was the attacking base of the most successful United team in the last 18 years.
9. Thank you for leading the line admirably in the 2009-10 season after Ronaldo’s departure, and scoring header after header from Antonio Valencia crosses.
10. Thank you for the late goal against Man City in the league cup semi-final that year. There was really going to be no other player who’d get us that goal that late that season.
11. Thank you for your bicycle kick against Man City. I couldn’t care less if your touch in the build up was awful, or where the connection was precisely for that goal. What matters is that finish truly did ‘defy description’ and it was ‘sensational and superb’.
12. Thank you for the hat-trick against West Ham towards the end of that same season. Swear at the camera all you like, Wayne. Your first touch for that second goal was unparalleled. This hat-trick was scored on the same day as India won the cricket world cup final, but I’ll still always remember it with as much fondness as the final.
13. Thank you for the 2 perfect free-kicks against Arsenal in that 8-2 win. I’ll never know why that little gimmick with Young led to such perfect free-kicks, but hey, I couldn’t care less.
14. Thank you for playing the perfect ball for van Persie’s volleyed goal against Villa, sealing our last title under Sir Alex Ferguson.
15. Thank you for that extraordinary finish from the halfway line against West Ham, and being one of the few players that came out with some respect in a mostly depressing post-Feruson season.
Thank you for being the club’s all time greatest goal-scorer, winning every title possible with the club (and contributing immensely to each success) and showing immense drive, determination and passion for the club and the game season after season.
More than anything, thank you for being my sole connect to the club throughout my childhood, weekend after weekend for so many years.
I will most definitely “remember the name, Wayne Rooney”.
Harshdeep (In denial), Bangalore
…I’ve no doubt you’ll get a few mails from bedroom bloggers delighted that United have f**ked off that useless clogger Rooney. And there is a grain of truth in that, as he’s no longer anywhere close to the player he was.
United saw the best of him though. So many wonderful moments, vital goals, unforgettable memories; far too many to list here. United’s record goalscorer, who won every trophy it was possible for him to win while at the club.
Thanks for the memories Wayne. All the best at Everton.
…13 years, it’s been a heck of a journey.
the debut hat-trick
the Newcastle screamer
the half line goal
the bicycle kick against the noisy neighbors
the record-equalling free-kick goal to salvage a draw
You will be missed Captain.
Rooney is no Man United legend
October 20th 2010. After the Wayne Rooney transfer request story had broken, he released a statement citing a lack of ambition by the club. This statement was released hours before United had a Champions League game at home to Bursaspor. Guaranteeing that every question to every player and staff member would be Rooney related. A distraction. Call me cynical but the timing didn’t seem coincidental. He was malicious in his timing. Or at the very least uncaring. It was all about him. He eventually signed a contract. But he has meant nothing to me as a Manchester United fan since he did that.
He may be the club’s all time top goalscorer but still I feel no loss on his departure. No emotional bond broken. He is not a club legend. Not if he had double his tally of goals. Those who are crying all over social media who think he is a club legend must not have grown up knowing what loyalty and true love for a club is. Thanks for the goals and performances Wayne but you’re not a club legend. And don’t give me the Roy Keane type high pitched sneery scoffing laugh at the naivety and sheltered delusion of expecting loyalty in modern footballers. Roy’s loyalty was supreme. And his cynicism about loyalty is only because he is a disappointed idealist.
It’s all about money now etc now anyway is what people say. Maybe for many it is. Maybe for the majority it is. The vast majority even. But that’s exactly why the few who are not motivated by things outside of their love for the club are the ones who I see as true club legends. It’s far too high a compliment to be thrown around so wildly. Particularly when it’s thrown at a player who said the club lacked ambition. But suddenly that club’s ambition looked very healthy when he got a nice pay rise. And I’m not saying players don’t want what they are worth. But true club legends have probably all accepted slightly less wages than they could get elsewhere if they really wanted to engineer a move. Don’t true club legends stay and fight to make a club’s ambition a reality? Or try at least. Not just throw in the towel when it’s not going all their own way anymore.
If Wwayne Rooney meets your criteria for club legend status then good luck to you. But he does not meet mine. And I don’t think I’m alone in that. And the fact that he meets your criteria means that yes I do cast judgement on you as a Manchester United supporter. I question your loyalty because you fail to question his. And you fail to hold him to a higher standard. It’s not him personally. I loved him. He was a throwback. All those cliches. He was absolute quality in his prime. It’s not personal. And it’s not a failure to forgive. Well it is…But only because for me what he did is unforgivable. But any player who did that would be judged by me and deemed unworthy of club legend status just the same. Paul Scholes when asked why he never left United. Said ‘it was the club I loved as a kid. Another 50k per week or 300k per week, I wouldn’t have gone anywhere’.
Some people might see that as naive or even a little silly. That they would put more value on playing for the club they love over more money somewhere else. But it’s exactly that ‘naivety’ that makes them so loved. It’s called loyalty. And makes them true club legends. Rooney does not qualify.
And just think – if Freddy Shepherd hadn’t been panicking about a lack of season ticket sales, Newcastle would never have put that £30m bid for Rooney in [which definitely did happen, I checked], and Man United wouldn’t have been forced to buy him that summer [they were going to wait, they really were, I checked], and things may have turned out oh-so differently.
Chaos theory. eh?
Alex Stokoe, Newcastle upon Tyne
Sad about Sol and the associated isses
Reading the interview with Sol Campbell in the Guardian made me a little bit sad. I’ve often been amused by the frequency with which famous ex-players get managerial jobs that they have in no way earned (See: Sherwood, Tim) so it’s a bit strange that Sol hasn’t been given a shot, more so when you consider he’s actually got his coaching licences.
Then there’s a reference to his previous behaviour and I find myself trying to remember if he had a history with some kind of social issue; was he an alcoholic? Did he have a gambling problem? I keep reading and find the answer is that he’s been outspoken about racism in football.
That’s when I get to the quote when he’s been pushed on his thoughts on racism – he’d prefer to avoid saying what he thinks because, “I don’t want to rub anyone up the wrong way”.
It’s so sad that he’s in a position where he’s decided he might have a better chance of getting a job if he just keeps quiet on something he believes and has more than likely experienced first hand throughout his career. It’s so sad the colour of his skin still might be holding him back from getting an opportunity to be involved in the game despite having all the previous honours in the game of Roy Keane, Sherwood, Shearer and a raft of former players who got managerial gigs based on their name.
Football is quite wonderful in many ways but the fact certain attitudes to ethnic minorities, women and the LGBT community still persist or might be allowed to persist is really ridiculous. I can’t even call it pathetic, stupid or juvenile because it’s all of those things and so much more.
Anyway, transfer gossip.