I don’t read everything in the sporting press, obviously, but so far I have not found any serious condemnation of the tactics of Blackburn in the press. On Match of the Day the BBC commentators laughed at the diving, and noted the attack on Almunia, but left it at that. The notion that Allerdyce had sent out the team to cheat and maim brought no comment.
O’Neill at Aston Hold Your Head did however comment. He attacked Aston Villa supporters. If you recall, the Lord Wenger clearly didn’t like the way the home support had turned on the team of late, but he did nothing other than withdraw his “thank you for your fantastic support” comment in his programme notes – and even then he did thank everyone for going to Rome and making lots of noise. But he didn’t start raving in the press (or if he did, I missed it) against the people who pay his wages.
The fact is that Hold Your Head fans (the club is named after its infamous tactic this season in which any player that goes down is told to hold his head so the ref stops the game) have booed Gabriel Agbonlahor – the player they cheered like mad when the club used its head holding tactic at the Ems. What good does Mr O think his attack on the supporters who pay the wages will do the club? The next thing he’ll do is close the ground and just show matches on TV because the crowd “disturbs the players”.
Actually it has been a weekend for great comments by managers. The Redknapp character said of comments by Tottenham supporters, “I have never heard such crap in all my life.” Such a sheltered life he must have lived – but yes, that is normally what I think of the things the Tinies say.
Sir Alex F-Word also did his famous “we were the better team” thing after at 1-4 home defeat. And I am sure Ben E Tez said something stupid, but I couldn’t be bothered to listen to him. Sam the Slug did a big snort in his post match interview which made him sound like a pig. So no news there.
And thus the weekend closes, and what have we found? Shed fulls of fans before the game in the Ems cheering Liverpool, and the whole of north London cheering the Tiny Totts. How extraordinary.
Alex Song (one of the two players I nominated in Highbury High at the start of the season to be real revelations this year) really turning into a masterful midfielder, and the ability to score four goals with our entire first three choices of centre forwards all missing.
Almunia also developing into a terrific keeper, and Arshavin….
And there’s still Jack W waiting in the wings.
The only sad news is that it is seemingly true that Rosicky has had another set back and is out for another month. But Cesc and Adebayor, Eduardo and Theo should all be playing for us full time very shortly. Plus Arshavin, Denilson, Song. That’s effectively seven new players overall.
Makes it hard to remember what the fuss about not replacing Hleb and Flam was all about really.
(c) Tony 2009.