Sports news, commentary and scores with wit and added value. We compare and contrast the best and worst sports reporting in the mainstream press, blogs, TV and online. We love the English Premier League (Arsenal, Liverpool, Spurs, Manchester United and Manchester City) and all things football but we cover cricket, rugby, the Olympics, tennis, golf, F1 and highlights of the sporting year.
Spanish goalkeeper David Ge Dea has, says the Sun, told Louis van Gaal he does not want to play for Manchester United. The hammer-headed Van Gaal is quoted:
“We’ve talked with him, he was fully agreed with our decision. We have a goalkeeping coach, Frans Hoek. He had a meeting with David De Gea and he asks him ‘Do you want to play?’.
“No. So then I have to take the decision. It is a process.
“We had been observing him in preparation, he was not so good, he was not the same David de Gea as before. He was my best player last season. According to the fans, he was the best of the last two years.”
Why would Van Gaal share that informaion with the media? Is he trying to shame De Gea into staying at Old Trafford?
More on Eva Carneiro, the Chelsea club doctor compared to a “secretary” by team manager Jose Mourinho.
Carneiro is aware of her gender:
“In every medical television programme I have ever watched in my life, the female doctor is hyper-sexualised. She goes off with Tom Cruise and it is all happy endings. Or she is not present.”
Or as the Daily Mail puts it:
Dressing up as a sexy Cleopatra and getting soaked in the ice bucket challenge: How the alluring Chelsea doctor Eva Carneiro became the most talked-about woman in football
Her pre-Raphaelite curls and toned figure have attracted the attention of many a fan but little is known about her love life
Nothing to do with sex, then.
In other news, the Mail notes:
FA urge fans to report sexist abuse after ‘horrible’ footage emerges of Chelsea club doctor Eva Carneiro being abused
If in doubt, blame the fans.
The referee’s a w***ker…
When Chelsea FC’s manger Jose Mourinho thought it a good idea to admonish club doctor Eva Carneiro in public for treating Eden Hazard on the pitch, he crank-started the journalisomobile.
Michael Oliver, the referee, indicated that Hazard required attention. Mourinho felt that the more important factor was his team being down to nine men against Swansea (one had already been sent off).
Mourinho was upset, stating:
“I wasn’t happy with my medical staff because even if you are a medical doctor or secretary on the bench you have to understand the game.”
A secretary? Smell that whiff of sexism?
Transfer Balls: Is Mason Holgate joining Bournemouth? Is Mason Holgate joining Everton? What says the Press?
August 8, The Mail:
Bournemouth have been given permission to speak to Barnsley right-back Mason Holgate after having a £1million bid plus add-ons accepted.
August 11, Daily Mail:
The Cherries are close to agreeing a £1million deal for the 18-year-old
August 12, Newcastle Chronicle:
Newcastle United transfers: Toon to rival Cherries for Barnsley ‘wonderkid’ Mason Holgate
August 12, Daily Express:
Man Utd and Newcastle rocked as defender undergoes medical at Everton
No mention of Bournemouth. But Manchester United have been “rocked”, which implied that United bid for the player, which they didn’t.
August 12, The Sun:
Everton are set to sign Barnsley prospect Mason Holgate. The Toffees have agreed a £1m fee for the defender, 18, who snubbed Bournemouth
August 12, The Guardian:
Blues agree £1m deal with 18-year-old defender’s club
Isn’t that what Bournemouth did?
Who is Mason Holgate? Well, he’s defender who has played 22 times for Barnsley. So, naturally:
Liverpool Echo: “Everton target Mason Holgate the next John Stones?”
The first John Stones is 21.
Transfer Balls: Adama Traore signs for Aston Villa, completes for Liverpool and agrees Manchester United move
Transfer Balls: It’s been a busy summer for Barcelona’s Adama Traore. Those experts in the mainstream Press have been tracking his movements:
July 26, The Metro: “‘Manchester United paying release clause to seal Adama Traore transfer”
July 28, The Metro: “Why Arsenal need to beat Bayern Munich to the transfer of Barcelona’s Adama Traore”
July 30, The Metro: “Liverpool officials fly to Barcelona to complete Adama Traore transfer”
August 1, The Metro: “Southampton plot to hijack Liverpool’s transfer move for Barcelona winger Adama Traore”
August 2, The Metro: “‘Everton set to hijack Liverpool’s transfer move for Adama Traore”
August 3, The Metro: “Adama Traore travelling to Liverpool for medical ahead of transfer”
August 3, Daily Star: “Barcelona’s Manchester United target set for Liverpool medical”
August 5, The Metro: “‘Adama Traore has dinner with Stoke officials ahead of possible transfer”
August 7, Daily Mail: “Adama Traore is being linked with Stoke and Liverpool… Adama’s release clause in his Barcelona contract has dropped to £4.2m”
August 8, The Metro: “‘Adama Traore convinced he is making Liverpool transfer”
August 11, Daily Mail: “Adama Traore close to £12m Aston Villa switch from Barcelona”
August 11, Daily Telegraph: “Liverpool transfer rumours and news: Barcelona star Adama Traore emerges as top target”
August 11, Daily Telegraph: “Adam Traore is flying in for talks with Aston Villa on Wednesday as he prepares to complete a £7 million move.”
One Premier League game under his waistband and West Ham United’s 16-year-old Londoner Reece Oxford is being built up as the great English hope.
Take this from the Mirror’s John Cross:
…that is the remarkable story about English football’s latest sensation whose teenage kicks are destined to take him to the top.
Oxford has played one Premier League match. He did pretty well as West Ham beat Arsenal.
…Oxford is already one of football’s hottest properties after turning down interest from Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United.
Football Balls: Ian Weight is the Arsenal fanboy making a living dictating a column for the Sun.
On August 4, he told Sun readers:
If Sunday’s Community Shield proved one thing to me, it’s that we will see a different Arsenal last season. One that finally has the maturity to go all the way once again. I genuinely believe Arsenal can beat everyone at home, and I am equally convinced they now have the discipline to nick a result when the chips are down
One whole week later and with one home defeat on the record books, Wright’s mind is changed:
At times it seems more important to play great football than grind out a point. That’s an attitude which must change, and change quickly. Or it’s going to be one heck of a long season.
Any lunatics out there think Wright would make a decent manager?
Transfer Balls realises that in footballing terms The Metro is now working as the Daily Telegraph’s feeder club. Following the DT’s news that Arsenal had signed Karim Benzema from Real Madrid last Friday – and were paying him less than Theo Walcott earns – the paper tells is readers that Benzema is not coming.
Arsene Wenger will surprise Arsenal fans by moving for PSG striker Edinson Cavani – and not Karim Benzema, according to reports.
The DT shamelessly adds:
While many expect Wenger to make an official bid for the Real Madrid forward, the Arsenal manager is said to be lining up an offer to sign the south American star instead.
Many expected Benzema to join Arsenal? Or as the Telegraph put it:
Readers now learn:
…now Arsenal are ready to free Cavani from his PSG days by making their move, according to the Metro.
Er, no. What the Metro says is:
Lee Hurley writes:
If you were to believe the press reports over the past 24 hours Arsenal are ready to bid for Edinson Cavani (again) and Karim Benzema has/is flying in for a medical with the club.
You means Press reports like this one:
And this one:
The Cavani reports seem to stem from Spain, an unlikely point of origin for a player who is currently in France but being linked with England, while the Benzema reports seem to come from Twitter – a hotbed of nonsense at the best of times (although a goldmine for information if you have your bullsh*t filter tuned correctly).
The Telegraph prefers a bullshit pipeline from The Metro.
Who hit the gas?
EXCLUSIVE: Raheem’s Merc crashed with nitrous cans in footwell, but who was driving?
Sterling’s mashed up Merc found abandoned in London
And, reportedly, there were “laughing gas canisters by the front seat”.
Very soon he learn that the only thing this has to do with the England player who joined Manchester City from Liverpool for £49m, is the car, which is his:
It is believed the Manchester City ace had lent the £125,000 car to a friend, and a worried source warned: “Raheem needs to think about who he hangs around with.”
Why does he? We don’t know what happened to the car. And laughing gas is not a banned substance. And the car was not “abandoned”. It was left by the roadside with damage to the front right wing.
The 155mph Merc was left on a London street after the crash. Its bonnet was crumpled and both airbags had activated, suggesting the impact was at speed.
It also suggests the driver and passenger were wearing seat belts. And according to Safecar.gov:
Frontal air bags are generally designed to deploy in “moderate to severe” frontal or near-frontal crashes, which are defined as crashes that are equivalent to hitting a solid, fixed barrier at 8 to 14 mph or higher. (This would be equivalent to striking a parked car of similar size at about 16 to 28 mph or higher.)
Was the impact at “speed”, as the Sun suggests?
It was taken to Manchester for repair. The car was pictured outside a garage in Middleton, with blue nitrous oxide canisters visible in a front seat footwell.
Anyone asked the mechanic about them?
We hear from an unnamed “source”:
“The Merc was in London for days after the smash — it was just left on the street. Raheem wasn’t in the car at the time, he was training in Manchester. It looks like he lent it to a mate.
“Raheem needs to think about whether he’s hanging around with the right kind of people, especially as he is such a high-profile star.”
The Sun then reminds readers that Sterling has twice been “caught” inhaling what appears to have been laughing gas.
…it has been linked to 17 UK deaths in five years, and doctors warn it can cause problems including blindness.
No direct link to the deaths has been proven. And as for the gas making you go “bald and BLIND”, that ‘fact’ is rooted in the words not of “doctors’, but of would-be media darling Dr David Allamby, clinical director of London’s Focus Clinic (see Press for details!), who told media:
“The links between vitamin B12 deficiency and hippy crack are well established, following a series of research papers. And this B12 deficiency causes damage to the optic nerve, something known as optic neuropathy.
“It could be helped by huge supplement injections of B12, but the vision loss could be irreversible, especially if advanced. And chronic abuse of nitrous oxide gas could not only lead to blindness, but a host of other problems, too, including nerve damage.
“I’d argue that if more and more people in the UK continue to abuse this so-called legal high we could be facing a sight loss epidemic in the months and years to come.”
The risk of going blind exists for a chronic user – defined as being addicted to the drug – and are deficient in vitamin B12.
Looks like elite athlete Raheem Sterling is safe. As for his car, well, he can always toss some of his fortune at making it better.
Transfer Balls: Manchester City have had a £38m bid for Kevin De Bruyne, 24, turned down by his German club Wolfsburg. The Times says City will go again with a bid of £40 million plus £7m of add-ons.
Man City are going for it. Having already signed Raheem Sterling, Fabian Delph and Patrick Roberts, De Bruyne would take the spend over the £100m mark.
but nothing is guaranteed.
Klaus Allofs, Wolfsburg’s sporting director, says the former Chelsea player will stay in Germany. Of that he is 99.9 sure – which is not sure at all. He said:
“I think some other clubs have definitely turned Kevin’s head. Some huge figures are doing the rounds and I can understand why Kevin is leaving everything open. He’s got to listen to the offers. I can’t expect from him that he doesn’t even want to entertain them.
“If he was only contracted to us until 2017, then yes, it would be different. But let’s be honest about it – it’s highly unlikely that he’ll stay with us right up until 2019 [when his contract ends].”
What says the player?
“All this is not because I want to prove [anything], if necessary,” De Bruyne has said. “I can do that in Germany. Would I return to England because I think this is a good choice for me and my family. Eighteen months ago I was worth €10 million and now suddenly I’m fifty or sixty [million euros]. It will be somewhere in between.”
Money. It’s all about the money.
Arsenal, Liverpool, Chelsea, Spurs And Manchester United fans are mugs: 5 things we learned from the Daily Telegraph’s bullshit.com football reports
The faddish Daily Telegraph has produced “five things we learned” from the Manchester United v Tottenham match.
One of them is that Harry Kane “is not one season wonder”. After a single match the Telegraph has learnt that. Wow. Either the Telegraph has a unique insight into football or else it’s a desperate, fickle organ that sees football not as sport to enjoy, but as a sport to milk.
Here are five more things the Daily Telegraph taught us this weekend:
1. “United really need to sort out the De Gea situation”
2. “The Premier League isn’t all fun and games” (learned by watching Stoke City v Liverpool)
3. “Chelsea have defensive problems” (learned watching the blues concede twice against Swansea)
4. “Cech needs to build a better understanding with his defence” (Learned by watching Arsenal’s new goalkeeper gift West Ham two goals)
5. “Reece Oxford is one for the future” (West Ham’s player at 16 is not one for the past)
Is Karim Benzema on his way to Arsenal from Real Madrid?
Unimpeachable sources says he is.
I’m hearing Benzema to Arsenal deal is ON. Not done, but talks advanced. #afc
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) August 7, 2015
And if Piers Morgan and the tarty Daily Telegraph are not enough news worthiness for you, then surely Jeinny Lizarazo is:
Well…JUST IN…first time one of my sources confirmed the rumor that the plan is Benzema coming to London today for medical…let’s see
— Jeinny Lizarazo (@Jeinnylizarazo) August 9, 2015
Unbelievable…I will repeat…first time ONE of my sources…told me about the plan was for today..but I doubt it https://t.co/86360PMTkc
— Jeinny Lizarazo (@Jeinnylizarazo) August 9, 2015
Ms Lizarazo’s sporting credentials are notable:
Para tener galacticos…necesitas dinero…. https://t.co/fqxC9v8MHQ
— Jeinny Lizarazo (@Jeinnylizarazo) April 29, 2015
Who is the “England ace” in the Sun’s “race row”?
SHOCKING video plunged England footballer Jamie Vardy into a race row last night after he was seen abusing a fellow gambler, saying: “Yo Jap, walk on.”
Leicester City striker Vardy, 28, can be heard loudly repeating the word “Jap” three times during a heated bust-up as he played a late-night game of poker at a casino.
Leicester City players have been embroiled a summer race row before. Earlier this year a trio of berks were exposed racially abusing Thai prostitutes in a homoerotic orgy.
A witness appears to tell us how bad it is:
“As an England international he should know that eyes are going to be on him when he goes out, but he acted just like a football thug. The club should investigate. I was outraged.”
The Sun then advises its innocent, shocked and confused readers:
The term “Jap’” short for Japanese, has been considered a derogatory racial term since World War II.
But one thing is certain, Vady has destroyed football and the entire season. Oh, he has becasue the ridiculous Kick It Out outfit says he has:
Anti-racism campaign group Kick It Out last night said Vardy’s behaviour had “cast a shadow” over the start of the football season.
Dr Taplin, also a Fellow of the University of Leicester, said, remidns us all that footballers are “role models to young people”.
Helpfully, Sun readers see Tony Parsons as their rol mode. He tells them:
As a man with a Japanese wife, an Anglo-Japanese daughter and a profound love for Japan, I should be deeply offended by Jamie chucking the old “Jap” insult around. But he is clearly so poorly educated he is somewhere beneath contempt.
Certainly the 70th anniversary of nuclear bombs falling on Hiroshima and Nagasaki is not the most sensitive time to revive such archaic racist terms.
Parsons then tells what names are acceptable to level at Vardy:
But screaming “Oi, Jap!” only makes one person look like a tosser, Jamie. And it is not the gentleman you were shrieking at. The Japanese are a proud, well-educated, civilised nation – the kindest and most decent people in the world. They wouldn’t let a thicko like Jamie Vardy clean their toilets.
Maybe he can write for the Sun?
The Daily Telegraph’s big news story of the week was that Arsenal had signed Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema. The France striker would join Arsenal on ‘Friday’.
The day came and went. The player never did sign. One day on and the shameless Telegraph tells its readers:
So, this Karim Benzema transfer still doesn’t seem to have happened
Doesn’t ‘seem’ to have happened? Is that the same as saying the paper – once an organ of record – now writes utter balls?
Transfer Balls: Manchester City will get Kevin de Bryune for £45m, West Brom go for Salomon Rondon and stunning Chelsea news
Is Kevin de Bryune heading to Manchester City from Wolfsburg? Yes, says the Guardian, so long as City cough up £45m for the 24-year-old former Chelsea player. But even if they do, Wolfsburg managing director Klaus Allofs says Man City will have to persuade De Bruyne to ask for a transfer, reports the Daily Express.
The Birmingham Mail says West Brom are to invest £15m in Venezuela striker Salomon Rondon, 25. The player, currently knocking them in for Zenit St Petersburg, would become Albion’s most expensive player.
The Daily Star reports that Everton want to take 23-year-old Inter Milan midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri on loan.
The Sun says nippy Aaron Lennon, 28, is on the verge of leaving Spurs. They’ve not even given him a squad number. Aston Villa are said to be interested.
The mighty Bournemouth have seen their £3m offer for Crystal Palace’s Glenn Murray, 31, rejected by Palace. The Guardian says the Cherries will now up that offer.
The Daily Telegraph states the bleedin’ obvious by reporting that Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho thinks you can only sign players from Barcelona, Bayern Munich or Real Madrid if a) the club wants to sell them or b) the player wants to leave. No sh*t Sherlock.
“We’ve observed him in training and matches and he’s not the David De Gea of last year. De Gea tries and does his utmost best, but it’s a difficult situation. Now we have to play our first match and I want players who can focus only on the match and he is not capable to do that.”
De Gea is dropped, then, for Man United’s opening game of the season, a home banker against Spurs (they never win at Old Trafford).
Bournemouth are in the Barclays Premier League. Eddie Howe, the manager, and Maxim Demin, the Russian billionaire owner, are the club’s driving forces. But club chairman Jeff Mostyn recalls how close the club came to going out of business. He tells the Times:
“I was doing the mirror test — stick a mirror in front of someone’s mouth and if it steams up they’re alive and a suitable buyer — but we could not find anyone. It was ludicrous. I got home that night and Rose said, ‘I know what you’ve done.’ In that room, knowing the reality that the club was about to be liquidated, I could not let it happen. So I signed the cheque.”
He outlines AFCBournemouth’s transfer poilicy:
“One man is not going to make a team, but one man can destroy it if he upsets the equilibrium in the dressing room.”
Daily Mail: 6 weeks
The Times: 8 weeks
The Sun: 2 months
The Express: 3 months
The Telegraph: “beyond three months”
And then the medics took a better look and decided that Wilshere is not all that crocked. Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger explains:
“The news he got yesterday was that it could be much shorter than expected because he’s two weeks in a boot and then maybe after that he can practice straight away again.”
The Telegraph says he “apologises to Manchester United for his dismal form”.
He’s lent his name to an open letter:
“I write this note to thank all the Manchester United family for the great support received during the year I’ve been part of this Club. I’m aware things didn’t work as we all expected and believe me, I feel really sorry about it.”
Transfer Balls: The Sun reports that Everton are unhappy with Chelsea captain John Terry for trying to lure John Stones, 21, to Stamford Bridge.
Asked about JT’s comments, Goodison chief Martinez said: “It is wrong — you know that it is illegal. The rules don’t allow you to comment on players at other clubs in that open manner — and that is disappointing… I am not stupid enough to say I know what will happen but I’ve always said he is not for sale.”
Everton have rejected bids of £20m and £26m for Stones. They have told Chelsea in writing that Stones is not for sale. But Terry hasn’t got the message, opining on Wednesday:
“One day I won’t be in the team but Chelsea are looking to the likes of John Stones for the future, so the club will continue to grow and do well.”
The Guardian notes:
Everton appear content at present to register their complaint with Chelsea rather than with the authorities. Martínez added: “We have a fantastic relationship between the two clubs. In the past we made our biggest investment in Chelsea [when signing Romelu Lukaku]. We all know there are rules and regulations and it is something we don’t want to see when other clubs speak about your players. It is wrong and it shouldn’t happen. As clubs we have a good understanding of where we are.”
Football Balls: Daily Telegraph stirs Manchester United and Manchester City row in Ogden-Silva twitter schism
The Daily Telegraph is 160 years old. To mark the newspaper’s birthday on June 29, it thundered: “Telegraph at 160: Serious, popular and pioneering.” And now full of utter balls.
Take the erudite and routinely insightful Mark Ogden’s story on Manchester United and Manchester City. Ogden had scored an interview with City’s Spanish star David Silva. The Telegraph’s headline told readers:
“David Silva: United’s glory days are now over – they are in City’s shadow now”
“Manchester United have reached a ‘verbal agreement’ with Benfica over centre-back Nicolas Gaitan, according to The Metro”
The phrase “according to The Metro” might be one of the most meaningless in journalism. All you can deduce from it is that Gaitan has not signed for Manchester United. He’s also not signed for Liverpool, where the Liverpool Echo bills him as a “playmaker“.
But who is Gaitan? The DT knows:
The Argentine will cost around £21.1m and would provide Louis van Gaal with badly needed reinforcements in defence.
He’s a defender? Maybe. Hold on a moment while the DT’s ‘expert’ types ‘Gaitan’ into a search engine and ammends the copy to read:
Manchester United have reached a ‘verbal agreement’ with Benfica over attacking midfielder Nicolas Gaitan, according to The Metro… The Argentine will cost around £21.1m and would provide Louis van Gaal with another option up front.
Over in The Metro the news is also changed:
The Argentinian winger is also believed to be on the radar of La Liga outfit Valencia, but United will have first refusal on the 27-year-old, according to reports in Portugal.
In Van Gaal’s 3-5-2 formation, this would see him deployed at left wing-back, a position Ashley Young made his own last season. Luke Shaw will also be hoping to stake a claim for this role come August.
Such are the facts when a new player arrives on the transfer balls cycle.
Trasner Balls: Arsenal are still siming to sign Karim Benzema from Real Madrid.
The Mail tells that the move will happen if the Gunners pay£45million for the striker.
Pies says Madrid’s new manager Rafa Benitez is looking to deploy Cristiano Ronaldo as a central striker and may even dot he same with Gareth Bale, which could leave French international Benzema on the sidelines.
This rumour looks to have legs.
Crystal Palace: Steve Parish slams agents’ greed, reveals what scares Chelsea and wants to be like Arsenal
Crystal Palace chairman and fan Steve Parish has been talking with The Times’ Matthew Syed:
On Fame Through Football:
“When I came into football, I had a successful advertising business employing 3,000 people in 13 countries. But you know what? My school never asked me to come back and talk to the pupils. Nobody knew who the hell I was. Then I bought a loss-making football club in south London and suddenly everyone wants to talk to me and hear my views on the world. It’s probably the worst business decision I ever made. But because you are an owner, you suddenly matter.”
“There were some agents who were getting £2,500 payoffs to organise a Coutts mortgage with a s*** interest rate. They are making millions out of the players. The players trust them, then they get ripped off. Not all agents are like that; some are damn good. But this kind of thing goes on all the time.”
Arsenal and England player Jack Wilshere is injured. He often is. This time he’s sustained a hairline fracture to his fibula. But how long will he be out of action for?
Daily Mail: “6 weeks”
The Times: “Jack Wilshere faces eight-week spell on the sidelines”
The Sun: “JINXED Arsenal ace Jack Wilshere is facing another two months out with a fractured ankle.”
The Express: “Arsenal sweat over Wilshere’s latest injury scare as star could be facing three months out”
The Telegraph: “beyond three months”
Any more of this and Wilshere will never play again.