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Bloody good fun As a Manchester United fan, I just want to say I’ve never enjoyed a season more where my team has been this dire.
Usually the seasons I love are where we do well. Obviously I am gutted at how our season has been despite the Solsjkaer bump but as a spectator this season has been a joy to watch.
So many sub plots, a genuine title race, the quality of football – even if its from the two teams I hate the most.
The Manchester City vs Tottenham quarter final might just be my favourite non Manchester United match ever.
Just a joy to be alive and a privilege to watch this season. Football, bloody hell.
Thank you Shehzad Ghias, mufc
Football is winning I live in a house full of women.
Sometimes my eldest daughter aged 7 feels sorry for me watching a game and asks, “is football winning Daddy”?
To which I usually reply yes darling football is winning grateful for her interest but no real meaning.
Looking at this years champions league semi final line up with monied super clubs like PSG and Man City (although they do play wonderful football beyond the reach of mere mortals), state funded behemoths like Real, commercial giants like Manu and malevolent maligners such as Jose and Sergio Ramos watching at home in their multi million pound pads (and yes I know Liverpool and Barca aren’t charitable organizations but at least they aspire to some ideals you can believe in) I think for once I can actually say to my daughter,
Yes, football is winning darling.
Cherish this. Dave LFC
Spurs have done f*** all There’s more than one meaning for the term “Spursy”. Spursy means bottling it but it also has a whole other meaning which is on display in the press today. The other “doing a Spurs” is the media being absolutely in love with Spurs and giving them more credit than they deserve for accomplishing a grand total of f*%k all.
Remember when Redknapp got them into the champions league and the press and neutrals reacted as if they’d won the World Cup?! The hype machine and hyperbole are always in full effect when it comes to Spurs doing something relatively meaningless on the grand scale of things. This Spurs period of “success” will go down as the period of “almost” and not actual measured, visible success. So far Spurs accomplishments are finishing above Arsenal, some useless attendance record, beating Real Madrid 3-1, putting pressure on Chelsea and now beating a mediocre team in Europe on away goals.
You ask how anyone could take the shine off beating the mighty Man City and making the Champions League semi final?!?! You can’t polish a turd so there’s no shine. First and foremost City might be domestic giants but they are nothing in Europe, so much nothing that last night was literally the first time their fans have ever even turned up to a European match. Domestic form does not translate to Europe I’m sorry to say. And to redirect a quote from Mourinho, in Europe City are “specialists in failure”. Despite the billions spent and top level managers recruited City are on par with PSG in Europe, which is comfortably in the gutter.
To make beating City even less of an accomplishment you can honestly say that Everton or Wolves probably would’ve made it to the UCL quarter finals if they had the easy fixtures that City had in the competition. Also it was on away goals, which might be the worst possible way to advance in any and all sporting competitions worldwide. And while you might say making it to the semi finals is a massive achievement for Spurs in reality says it’s not. That Ajax team that in total as a side probably makes less than Harry Kane does in a season and was assembled for less than the cost of an Alderweireld has made it there, while it’s an accomplishment for them Spurs have spent shedloads to get there.
You say they spent nothing last summer! Football didn’t begin in the last two transfer windows. Compared to 90% of sides in the CL they spent loads on Vertongen, Alli, Sissoko, Wanyama, Lloris, Sanchez, Son, Dier, Lamela, etc. While it might not be a lot if you compare them to English sides or the top two Spanish sides it’s a lot compared to the rest of the Continent. Plus they’ve got a settled manager who’s always been backed in the transfer market despite the fact that no top players want to play there.
I’m not even saying that Spurs must win a trophy but they must do something more than making semi finals, finishing second, etc to deserve the type of credit they’re getting. Because defeating literal no marks in Europe on away goals doesn’t deserve the hype they’re getting. Todd, Boston
Mind the gap Based on most of the arsenal fans comments in the past few weeks (not all, just most), I’m expecting the Arsenal end of season highlights dvd to just be a bunch of fans sitting around a tv cheering for whichever team spurs are playing
There’s been a few that have been genuinely happy to see a decent team punch above their weight but most are more concerned with seeing spurs lose than arsenal win
And it used to be Spurs that had that small team mentality Gary (are DVD’s still a thing), Essex
VAR drama? No thanks I have been quite alarmed to see the reaction to Spurs’ victory over City on Wednesday. Multiple large media sources are asking if the second leg was the greatest Champions League game ever, one of the greatest games ever, etc. Reasons cited are goals galore, calamitous defending, multiple lead/momentum changes, and late “VAR drama.”
By now I am quite used to the hyperbolic and extremely recency-biased times we live in, so it is not the (in my opinion) over the top reaction that bothers me. Certainly nobody can deny that it was a great game, a modern classic at least. What bothers me is that last bit about “VAR drama” as a contributing factor to the game’s greatness.
Can we as lovers of the sport please agree that “VAR drama” is not a positive, not a desired element of the game? VAR, and in fact referees, are a necessary evil to allow a competitive game to be played. If replay is needed to ensure that crucial calls are correct, fine. However, the choppy, momentum killing nature of replay actually detracts from the drama and emotion.
VAR has been such a fixture this season, particularly in the Champions League, that now when a team scores a goal, you’re pretty much better off waiting to celebrate or despair until you can be sure the play is not under review. Did the goal come from a set piece? You can bet there was some sort of pushing or pulling going on, and the ref will have to take a look at that. So we twiddle our thumbs for a little while, and then, finally, we can…celebrate! After a while it leaves a sour taste in the mouth. It kills the immediacy and the instant emotion of seeing the ball hit the back of the net. Of course goals have always been called back, but replay has taken it to a new level.
I hope that everybody would prefer a clear, undisputed last minute winner to the “drama” of watching the ref trudge over to a monitor as the tie hangs in the balance. That has a strong whiff of manufactured drama to me, and if it is rewarded with extra ink, tweets, and memes, I fear that the consequences of that will not be good for the game. Imagine what FIFA, UEFA, etc. will do if they realize that made for TV drama like VAR gets more people watching and talking about games. The thought makes me shudder.
Take it from an American- it is very possible to overdo instant replay, and when sports are slowed down and zoomed in to see if the ball was not touching any white blade of grass for a millisecond, it detracts from the magic and emotion that made us all fans to begin with. So please let’s not go overboard talking about “VAR drama”. Paul, Gooner, USA
After the first leg at White Hart Lane I wrote in to complain about the way in which VAR is implemented in the stadiums. I still feel everyone at the match should be shown what is being reviewed and why, but thats for another day,
It must have been extremely frustrating and disappointing for the City fans at the way events turned out last night. Personally I agree with the chap who said missing the penalty in the first leg is where it all started to go wrong. Whilst I have no time for the current ownership of City, their fans have a tradition of suffering that is similar to our own, and I can recall watching them get 30 and 40 thousand when in the 3rd tier. So I’d like to say I have great admiration for the calm and measured response of their fans in the media and here in the mailbox to the turn of events. One can only imagine the hue and cry there would have been if other teams in that general geographic are (in red) had gone out in similar circumstances, their somewhat more excitable and voluble fans would have made the mailbox a no go zone for days to come.
I hope City and their fans recover, ideally not starting until Sunday. Jim French (Spurs since ’59) Herts
Football karma The quadruple was hanging by a thread at the Liberty Stadium when a penalty that wasn’t and a goal that was offside kept it alive. No VAR available allowed both decisions to stand.
Football karma happened last night when an ex Swansea player ended the quadruple with a handball goal in spite of VAR.
Just smile. Paul (SCFC)
Shooting from the hip Hi
I’ve read and watched an awful lot about the Llorente goal, but there is one question that that no one seems to have asked. Why on earth is Llorente going for that ball with his hip? The ball clears Kompany’s head a yard in front of him – he’s off the ground albeit stooping slightly. It comes at head height for Laporte standing immediately behind. Llorente is a renowned header of the ball and yet he’s missed it by half a body length. He even nods towards it as if to confirm that he was really trying to head it.
We were lucky not because it should have a handball (sorry – I still don’t see it) but because it was a truly abysmal attempt at a header!
Still – bring on Ajax! Paul, Singapore
And that’s that Now that City have been knocked out of the CL can we finally put to rest the following:1.) Man Utd ’99 team > City ’19 2.) Man Utd ’08 team > City ’19
Hell they may just go ahead and mess up the league (Hopefully not!). Crazy to think a team that had only won the league cup was being touted as the best team PL has ever seen. Yash, MUFC (sour grapes)
Why get rid of Jose? Well well well, going through a few mailboxes, there seems to be a general consensus that Man Utd fans think their first XI and the squad are simply not good enough. There have been shouts to get Pogba out and whispers to say goodbye to even De Gea. That’s practically two above average players they have.
My point is why get rid of José? It’s easy to buy into narrative that his negativity led the players to play like that and his demands for upheaval was merely a tantrum.
Maybe, just maybe it was the other way around. Wilful ignorance of the lacl of quality of the team by the board might be the constant source of frustration for José. It’s easy to say it was all of José’s making. But maybe he just reacted to something so blatantly obvious and yet obscured to the board.
Think about it, you’re planning to ship off Pogba and De Gea. I imagine you will bring in someone better and younger with potential
Surely if you’re going for great players and a upheaval, José has proven himself to win a title out of such conditions. But hey, Olé’s at the wheel and all that. Let’s buy the media narrative and not see the other side that clearly exists.
Apropos to nothing, Olé has done well considering his past experience and pedigree. Not his fault it’s a mess upstairs. Jyoti
There were some games last night apparently Well that was stressful, a fantastic first half but poor second half, story of our season so far but we are into the Semi Finals of the Europa League, fair play to Arsenal for beating Napoli in their own backyard, not many gave them a chance either, losing Aaron Ramsey to injury could damage their season however. Mikey, CFC (4 English sides in European Semi Finals, incredible achievement)
One nil to the Arsenal, all of a sudden we are now winning away and defending way better.
I hope this continues till we secure top 4 finish and if all goes well, win UEL. Lwazi (Still appreciate all Wengers Work) Cape Town
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