Fast and furious. That was just Paulo. As Sunderland become the first team of the season to sack their manager, the pod take a look at where Sunderland can go from here. Who would you like to see as Sunderland Manager in the near future? Do they have good options? After all that reform, why get rid of a man who has only started on the next chapter?
Elsewhere, Sir David faced Pelle and only one side could came of the pitch looking satisfied with the result. Manchester was blue for the weekend. Noise, seemed to be coming back over the garden fence. Sir Alex will be having words…
LFC lost their unbeaten run whilst Spurs have only conceded one goal in the league this season. Newcastle crash and break their Hull whilst Swansea put on a masterclass of how to play Premier League football. It’s time to Talk World Soccer; World Soccer Talk; Talk Soccer, World:
EPL Talk: @epltalk
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Here’s the transcript of the podcast episode:
Laurence: Welcome back to the EPL Talk podcast and World Soccer Talk, and actually it’s been a really good weekend of European football, it’s in great health. Spain, Lionel Messi scored 322 goals, one less than Real Madrid’s all-time top goal scorer, Raul. Kartik, that shocked you, didn’t it?
Speaker 2: I was stunned. I thought it was an error when you put it in our pre-pod production notes.
Speaker 1: No, absolutely no error. Is that going to annoy Raul or what does that show, that’s what I’m trying to work out.
Speaker 2: [Inaudible 0:00:34] Messi’s greatness because Raul was truly great even though there are still elements of Real Madrid’s fandom as well as Spain’s fandom that do not appreciate Raul’s qualities and virtues.
Speaker 1: Yes, at some point he was somewhat of an outcast figure in the same way that Balotelli has been at different points in Italy. Pepe Reina in the Napoli-Milan game or the Milan-Napoli game, producing an excellent save, well, a very good save to stop his – was it 27th penalty, Morgan?
Speaker 3: I believe it was his 27th, yeah.
Speaker 1: Pepe Reina looks so happy with that and of course Napoli went on to win that one, didn’t they?
Speaker 3: Yes. You know that he had to know going into it that Balotelli was on that nice, hot streak there. To do that, he gave him a little extra fist bump, especially considering the fact that he probably played against him in the primary league as well. That’s always a good sign. Good for Pepe Reina. Good for Rafa too.
Speaker 1: Napoli and Roma both at the top of the league, aren’t they Kartik, but you seem to think that, I think, Napoli have the advantage on this one.
Speaker 2: Right. I guess you’ve been reading my tweets. Roma has done very well, [inaudible 0:01:42.5] brilliant today in the Derby against Lotzio, The Capital Derby. I just think that they don’t have enough depth. Midfield’s hurt with Michael Bradley’s injury, which could be a few more weeks. I think Napoli has more squad than people appreciate and Rafa’s got them well organized. Mazzarri left him a good squad and he added it to it with the additions, particularly, from Real Madrid over the summer.
Speaker 1: If there is to be believed that Rafa only needs a 22-man squad to win the league, Real Madrid possibly needing a little bit more. One of Rafa’s old clubs obviously. [Inaudible 00:02:20] Matt Bale injured in the Madrid warm-ups so he didn’t get to make his home debut. “What did we spend all that money for if he’s going to get injured?,” they said in Madrid.
Male: Yes. Well, they that for about 20 minutes until Ronaldo kind of reminded then that well I’m still here and I’m quite good. [Crosstalk 0:02:38]. Ronaldo’s second goal was just delightful [inaudible 00:02:46].
Speaker 1: I don’t watch enough of – I don’t really care about Ronaldo that much. Finally, of course, Chris, the two superpowers now, if they can be described that, in League One. PSG won, Monaco won a really good advertising campaign for League One.
Speaker 2: Yes, “El Cashico”…
Speaker 1: Yes. Oh, very good.
Speaker 2: Yes, as it can be [inaudible 00:03:11]. It was a very [inaudible 00:03:15] game, I thought. Not the best advert for League One because I think it is a good league overall, but that’s perhaps what’s going to happen when you have such a high level of talent clashing. We see it in the premiere week, as well, [inaudible 00:03:27] the top teams.
Speaker 1: Do you mean cancelling each other out in a sense?
Speaker 3: Yeah. I would just point out the two managers in this match. Opening of the game was [inaudible 00:03:37] but Ranieri and Blanc – [inaudible 00:03:41] my column tomorrow morning on World Soccer Talk – both are very tentative [inaudible 00:03:45]. Once it was 1-1, they got past half time; I think both wanted a point. PSG pushed a little more towards the end of the match, but I think both were happy to just take the point and move on, not drop this game. Similar to what we saw with Mourinho and Moyes earlier in the season in England.
Speaker 1: Well, speaking of the English Premier League, let’s get back to that. If you want to put an “El Cashico” on the map then it’s definitely gonna be Man City versus Manchester United. I saw one person tweeting out how disappointing it was that classic capitalism didn’t overcome new age capitalism. Kartik, in many ways, the new age capitalism really did win out here. Man City, I think we can describe them as rampant.
Speaker 3: Rampant, yes. It was certainly based on this data point, this evidence. Rampant, very, very tidy, very good, Manchester City and maybe more questions need to be asked about David Moyes’ squad selection and some of the tactical mistakes he seems to have made before the match and then compounded during the course of the match. Manchester City has beaten Manchester United by these sorts of score lines in Derbys previously, in times when Manchester City was fighting relegation and Manchester United were trying to win the league .So being a Manchester City supporter, having seen these sort of derby victories before, I am withholding judgment on Manchester City. Have to start getting results away from home. Can’t be dropping points to card it and those sorts of sides. We’ll learn a lot more about City next week at Villa Park. To get a full three points there that says something. If they drop points, that also says that Manchester City are not quite a title contender. I’m not convinced at this point.
Speaker 1: Kris, Kartik did put this caveat on in many ways and he put it pre-match, protecting his back side, if you like, that if City did lose or Manchester United did lose, how much we can actually take away from it considering out early years et cetera. At the same time, that’s a couple of games where Moyes has been outthought by another manager in what is a Top 8 clash. We’re talking about his difficult start here. He’s had the clash with Mourinho, he’s had the clash with Rodgers and now he’s had the clash with Pellegrini and all three of them he hasn’t managed to come out on top really.
Speaker 2: Yes and I think Pellegrini is perhaps the most prominent in terms of being cast as a tactical thinker and someone who is very good at the detail. I was most surprised, almost, by his use of Fellaini because, again, this is a player he’s supposed to know very well. This is a player who you could argue Moyes cultivated his career and his rise to prominence in the Premier League yet he seems to want to deploy in that role that I’ve never been sold on seeing Fellaini in, which is far deeper. Now, again, he did start there a standing as a defensive midfielder for obvious reasons because he’s 6-foot, massive and built like an outhouse. It’s not where you get the most benefit from him and I think contained within that selection choice is arguably a microcosm for the problems that have been David Moyes is the tactical, as you say, there’s just a lot of questions that on a small, minute tests he seems to be repeatedly failing.
Speaker 1: I guess this is the problem isn’t it. These are tests that are being set, not by – he’s not setting himself these tests. We’re setting him these tests, aren’t we Chris? I say we. Do you see that? Do you see what I mean by that? Really, [crosstalk 00:07:19] reason for his thinking, for leaving Kagawa out the side so permanently and so predominantly as well, considering how often people reference his influence.
Speaker 3: Yeah, the Kagawa situation, I think, to a degree, he’s becoming better the less he plays.
Speaker 1: It’s like an inverse column.
Speaker 2: Yes, bring him on for a minute at the end then score a hat-trick. [Inaudible 00:07:43] legend, the longer the story goes on the better it becomes and the more you expound on it. It’s not so much as setting him tests; it’s evaluating the fallout situations. I think that again, he is someone that was always going to come under a tactical spot like when he moved to a bigger club, irrespective of whether it was Manchester United. You could say perhaps, the fix just haven’t been the kindest to him and in facing Manchester City, he’s facing the best scorer in the Premier League. I think that …
Speaker 1: Kartik would dispute that, but okay.
Speaker 2: I’m completely sure he would, but again, that’s his own decision. I think he’s the best scorer in the Premier League. It seems as if he gets it to a degree, because when Manchester United had that late switch to 4-3-3 there seemed to be more fluency about them. There seems to be a bit more penetration towards them as well. Unfortunately, that’s come far too late in the game because he’s already four goals down. So I would imagine, it’s not as crazy as it sounds to say about a manager who is – I think Moyes is in his 50s now. There’s going to be a learning process. There’s going to be a point of him maturing into a different kind of role because even though he spent 10 years at Everton, it’s not Manchester United and that’s no disrespect to Everton. I think it’s a wonderful club but it’s a different mentality, it’s a different approach.
Again, if Everton [inaudible 00:09:15] we don’t really say a great deal. That was something I thought was almost fundamental to Moyes was when he was at Everton against the biggest sides he did like to be a bit, not much negative, but defensively sound and not always take risks. I think in games like today, that’s possibly the worst thing you can do, because good sides will create chances against a defensive side because they’re used to playing like that every week against teams that will come and visit them in [inaudible 00:09:44].
Speaker 3: Let me follow up on Chris’s point about Fellaini because that’s very important. Fellaini was deployed next to Carrick who apparently was suffering from the flu or some sort of illness. That’s why this is one of the worst games we’ve seen Carrick play in recent years. Fellaini did absolutely nothing to pick up the runs on Manchester City’s midfield and allowed Samir Nasri free rein to act as kind of a horizontal play maker, going end to end, unmarked and having lots of space and lots time on the ball to pick out some brilliant passes and really open up the attack. I thought Fellaini was maybe the worst player on the pitch.
Speaker 2: Fellaini was directly responsible for their third goal, which killed off the game because he just didn’t follow the Aguero who was his runner. He just left him [inaudible 0:10:32]…
Speaker 1: Probably poor to put Fellaini on Aguero through, right? Surely if Aguero is so high up and you put him there.
Speaker 2: Yes, but I don’t think he was put on him as such. It wasn’t sort of a sign that you can give him for the game but in that situation, that was the man he was picking up. He just let him go at the edge of the box and just let him wander into the box completely, sort of – I don’t think there was a United player within sort of 10 foot of him. You just don’t do that. That’s just simple basics of football. You follow the man you’re on at the time. I think Fellaini had a very, very poor game [inaudible 00:11:11], which is a shame because he had a very good game in the week.
Male: [Crosstalk 0:11:14]
Speaker 3: This is another thing that’s very striking is that Fellaini had very good games against Manchester City when he was with Everton. Moyes had a better record against Manchester City over the course of the last six seasons than Ferguson did. Everton had a better record against Manchester City than Manchester United did over that period. It’s actually shocking to see the tactical naivety from Moyes and then Fellaini as I said. I concur with Matt’s comments too; I think just shocking performance, worst point on the pitch for me on either side.
Speaker 1: Well, whereas in contrast, a lot of people putting Wayne Rooney as the man of the match for Manchester United. In agreement there, Morgan?
Speaker 3: Absolutely, Wayne Rooney was the only United player in my mind that showed any impetus in this game. He was the only one that actually looked up for the game. He obviously scored the only goal from a free kick so you could literally say he did it all himself. The defense was poor and he was the only one really making runs, really taking it to City. Even playing defense, Wayne Rooney did what he could but for the most part, Vincent Kompany had him in his back pocket for the most of the game. I think that to put a lot of the onus on Marouane Fellaini I think that’s kind of unfair because it really was the entire United team, to me, just seemed very poor today. I mean Ashley Young, very poor today.
Speaker 1: What makes Ashley Young so poor?
Male: [Crosstalk 00:12:45]
Speaker 3: He was just …
Speaker 1: People say that, come on, we’re a podcast here. Why was he awful?
Speaker 3: He was awful. You saw him giving the ball away, not tracking back to go after his guy. I think it was – I can’t remember if it was the second or third goal …
Speaker 4: Navas ran by him about five times that I could count before he came off and then before Young came off. Just ran by him and Young didn’t even bother to chase after him.
Speaker 1: Young’s biggest fault today was that he was anonymous in the [inaudible 0:13:15]. He had absolutely no impact in terms of breaking City down. The position he plays and the role he’s given at United means that if he doesn’t create chances, if he doesn’t sort of pull defenses and make them play wide so he creates a space for the people in the middle, he is a waste of a player.
Speaker 3: I think that’s the reason why you see a lot of these people clamouring for Shinji Kagawa is they believe he is a player that is a lot better than Ashley Young and he is a player that can do those things. We have seen him do those things. He can also hold up the ball well. I think really, the fact that David Moyes is continually picking Ashley Young over Shinji Kagawa, it’s criminal at this point.
Speaker 1: I agree to an extent but Kagawa is not a wide player. In my view, Kagawa, his best position is playing off the striker and sort of having that area just outside the penalty area as his world, as it were.
Speaker 3: Especially with …
Speaker 1: If you play in that position then you’re going to get the best out of him.
Speaker 3: Especially with van Persie out of the team today, this was the perfect opportunity to play Kagawa, move Rooney further up the pitch, although Rooney played pretty well in the role he was put in. Move him further up the pitch and slide Kagawa in there and he didn’t do it. Kagawa, this is shocking guys, has played zero minutes in their three matches against Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea, their three big matches in the league. Has not touched the pitch yet.
Speaker 2: There’s got to be reasoning behind that thought. You can’t just say …
Speaker 1: He must’ve just not fancied him in training.
Speaker 2: He just doesn’t look good, guys. I don’t know what’s wrong.
Speaker 1: Everyone on Twitter’s saying he’s so good.
Male: [Crosstalk 00:14:57]
Speaker 3: He started Anderson in one of the matches in the Premier League. You’re going to tell me Anderson is more effective that Kagawa?
Speaker 1: Maybe in this system. Although Kagawa, when he has played Manchester United this season, has actually looked quite good. To completely contrast that, we’re speaking about defense. It wasn’t until the 78th minute apparently that David de Gea made his first save, showing possibly how effective that City’s strike force is, Kartik. Aguero started very well, he was bright for the whole time he was on the pitch, wasn’t he? Even the people around him and then they were allowed so much space. I think you picked out particularly, they exploited Chris Smalling.
Speaker 3: Yeah, and actually after de Gea’s save in the 78th minute, he shouldn’t have to make that save. He made it because Dzeko was selfish and didn’t lay the ball off to Nasri, who probably would’ve scored. That’s why he was able to make that save. Yes, Smalling got exploited. I think Rafael was a huge miss today for United. He’s been a huge miss this whole time he’s been injured but really today. City went after right back using Nasri on the left and then he would push inside. He would Kolarov who is much more of an attacking threat than he is a – he is more of a defensive liability than he is a good defender.
From the left-back position, push up, have a lot of time and space to cross the ball because they didn’t have Rafael with those forward runs, and Kolarov, who is a suspect defender as I said, this is why Clichy tends to get the nod over him – Clichy was injured today – was not testing, was not forced to stay back in that left-back position because he doesn’t have the closing speed to chase down someone like a Rafael or Antonio Valencia if the right side of United’s attack had been working. That opened up space, time for the left side of City’s attack. The strikers were clinical, Negredo in particular. Negredo didn’t score today but I thought he was actually, maybe, besides Nasri, the best player on the pitch for City. He was brilliant, his linkup play, his holdup play, timing of his runs. He was fantastic. Justifying Pellegrini’s choice to go with him over Dzeko who came on for a cameo and played selfishly in the 12 minutes he was on.
Speaker 4: Basically proved why he didn’t get to start today.
Speaker 3: Correct. That’s what you said on Twitter, Morgan, and you were correct.
Speaker 1: Great, let’s all just repeat our tweets eh, Morgan? I’m kidding. Kartik, [inaudible 00:17:26] sans Nasri.
Speaker 4: Fantastic today. I’ve been looking for Nasri this season because he closed last season very well with the two games after. He had an issue with Mancini, that’s well known. The two games after Mancini was sacked and then the summer tour of the States, which I saw in person, Nasri looked like a new player, a bright player. He looked like he was up for it. He was just beaten down by the former manager. And this season, in pre-season I thought he was maybe the best City player. Lo and behold, Silva comes back up from Confederations Cup and has moved right back into the squad ahead of Nasri. I haven’t seen out of Silva the kind of quality and creativity that we’ve seen from Nasri recently for about a year and a half, consistent creativity. There are moments for Silva, but Nasri, I think, now, with Silva’s injury realizes this is his chance to take it and prove to Pellegrini – Pellegrini probably predisposed towards Silva because he managed in Spain – to show him what he can do. He was great at midweek in Champions League and today, just brilliant. Best player on the pitch for me, by a pretty wide margin. Was at the center of everything City did with the exception of the goal on the [inaudible 0:18:47] where Negrado and Yaya linked up well.
Speaker 1: [Inaudible 00:18:53] good isolating these things, Kartik. I think that you make a good point, you have to isolate the Derby in some ways. When we keep isolating all these games and you tend to take it out on the wider picture and so what is the wider picture for both these clubs? United wowed earlier in the week in the Champions League and City somewhat underwhelmed. That’s probably being more than fair to them.
Speaker 4: Underwhelmed at Champions League?
Speaker 1: Yes.
Speaker 4: I don’t think so.
Speaker 1: Well, I feel like they underwhelmed. I didn’t think their performance was as good as it could’ve been.
Speaker 4: Well, it was away from home in Eastern Europe. I thought it was pretty good.
Speaker 1: That’s fair but I still think that with [inaudible 00:19:33] they have, et cetera then they’re kind of doing better.
Speaker 4: Well, go ahead. Go ahead.
Speaker 1: Still, outside these isolated situations, when we bring them together, what does it actually mean for both these Manchester sides because they’ve got a lot more competition this season from the other people around them. I guess the bigger picture for both managers is that they actually have to get some consistency here.
Speaker 4: Right. For Manchester City, it shows how they can play if they set up to attack and they set up to play, not on the break necessarily but with free flowing, creative midfielders and with the wide players pushed up, Kolarov and Navas in this case in particular. Then when Navas came off Wilmer was pushed pretty far into the attack as well. That shows how City can play and if you take the impetus, you can go and put games away in the first 50 minutes. Now, Manchester City has been poor in both their away matches in the Premier League, which is why I’m saying I don’t want to jump to conclusions about the Club. Two teams that are possibly going to be the relegation fight City has faced and [inaudible 0:20:42] won that game as I think we’ve discussed this last week.
Wider conclusions for City, we can wait on. Now, as far as Manchester United is concerned, it’s early. It’s been a bad start as far as their fixtures are concerned, but you have to be concerned about David Moyes’ tactical acumen in bigger matches. He got it right midweek against Leverkusen. I think, Lawrence, you’re giving them far too much credit in that game. I’ve seen Leverkusen play a lot. That was one of the worst matches I’ve seen their backline play. I think United played well, don’t get me wrong. But I think they were helped in that situation. The three matches against top competition in the Premier League they have looked four going forward. They have looked destroying it at times. There has been confusion about where to be on the pitch, which you don’t see the organizational problems typically from the United side. Now, they’ve got Liverpool in midweek in the League Cup and normally that would not matter. It’s the Carling Cup and even if you get…
Speaker 1: Capital One Cup, Kartik.
Speaker 4: Oh sorry, Capital One Cup …
Speaker 1: What’s in your wallet?
Speaker 4: … even if you get eliminated by your biggest rival, it’s just the Carling – it’s just the Capital One Cup, excuse me. Thank you Lawrence.
Speaker 1: What’s in your glass?
Speaker 4: Right. Now with Moyes having already lost to Brendan Rodgers, having lost badly to Pellegrini, having dropped points to Mourinho at home, I have a feeling that just for his own peace of mind, and not that there’s anything remotely resembling a stacking that’s imminent but for his own peace of mind and to get some of these more deluded United fans off his back, he might have to win this game, whereas for Liverpool it would just be a bonus to win. There’s going to be a lot of pressure for a third-run League Cup match, something that you just don’t get at a [inaudible 00:22:30] match with United typically.
Speaker 1: I hope that’s somewhere in his team talk. “Guys, it looks like we’re going to have to win this one, so go out there and try and score. Okay, you know what to do. Goodbye.” I guess, as much as Kartik details that, Chris, the great thing is that he makes a good point here. It isn’t the Carling Cup so if they don’t have a positive result there, then it’s not ultimately consequential hugely on their season. Equally, if they do win it, it’s a great boost for the squad.
Speaker 2: Yes. There is a lack of pressure there I guess, because of the competition and how it’s perceived value. It always means the most when you win it. I tend to like because …
Speaker 1: They won it last season?
Speaker 2: …the supporters. Honestly, I’d kill for a silver spoon at the moment, never mind a trophy. Yeah, it’s moving past that. I think it’s very easy to say and perhaps it’s the one place where all football fans can empathize to a degree is that we’ve probably all been spanked off a rival at some point. Thus, for that reason, you can say that as soon as the whistle goes it’s finished and is the oldest cliché there is It’s still only worth three points, although you could easily argue there has also been a mental advantage now gained from City’s perspective.
Speaker 1: Yes, exactly. That mental advantage is something that I imagine that City will be hoping continues throughout the season. Manchester United, still with a long way to go. I guess, Matt, tactically, now the interesting thing is in what they do because last season they were talking about pairing up RVP and Rooney, and Moyes seemed fairly happy to do that. I’m wondering if in many ways that was part of the reason City got away with it today.
Speaker 2: I think, well, obviously, if you lose RVP then the team’s immediately going to be weaker [inaudible 00:24:29] team is playing for. Losing its star striker before the game is not ideal. It’s not just the fact that RVP wasn’t there, it was like Kartik and Chris have touched on, we’ve seen this sort of already throughout this season. It’s the lack of a cutting edge that United seem to have. Even when RVP and Rooney have played, they’ve still not sort of been in a position where they completely dominated the opposition and been able to carve them open at will.
I know they’ve had a difficult start to this season in terms of fixtures, but you’d expect at some point for them to have really clicked and created chances [inaudible 00:25:16] and they haven’t done that. They haven’t looked like they’re going to do that. Actually that was a really poor start to the season; Valencia’s not been effective either. That whole final third of the pitch for United is a huge worry. I imagine now with RVP going off injured, it just sort of compounds that and maybe they will be forced to have to maybe try something a little bit different, whether that’s changing shape or just changing personnel, we’ll see. I would be a bit concerned given, I think, they haven’t scored a goal from open play since the Swansea game on the first day of the season.
Speaker 1: I’ll [inaudible 00:25:51], scoring from open play doesn’t mean anything.
Speaker 4: Lawrence, let me ask you this, as a Liverpool supporter, that game last month, will you as a Liverpool supporter, after [inaudible 0:26:00.5] scored, ever threatened, ever felt like, Manchester United, we’re going to take the game by the scruff of the neck and beat you guys?
Speaker 1: Manchester United never looked good in that match. I think they looked good in the match towards the end …
Speaker 4: [Inaudible 00:26:13]. Maybe not. That’s the point, I think, Matt, Chris and I are all trying to make is that there’s something, even in their body language, even the way they’re reacting on the pitch, there’s something very wrong. Even in the past when they would lose to Manchester City or Liverpool, their two big rivals, there’d be a fight in the United side that was missing in these two losses to their rivals in the last few weeks. There’s something very wrong in just the disposition of the team.
Speaker 1: We’ll talk more about disposition, there were a couple of sides in the Premier League and we will get on to the dispositions of Manchester United probably next weekend and in other podcasts. There are plenty more podcasts though. Morgan and Matthew started – you’ve not started, really, it’s been in the works for a while, but you’ve got a new podcast about gaming. If you’re interested in that, it’s called, Press A to Shoot, Matt.
Speaker 2: It is indeed.
Speaker 1: Some people are confused by that because you don’t actually press A to shoot.
Speaker 2: I know, it’s a clever hint at just how rubbish we both are at video games.
Speaker 1: Right, because I often think hey – when I think of economics, I always think, I’ll go to a child. Then if I think gaming I’ll go to someone who is really good at it.
Speaker 4: I can say, when you’re good enough at FIFA, you can press A to shoot.
Speaker 1: Sure [crosstalk 0:27:32]
Speaker 2: I’m an [inaudible 00:27:37].
Speaker 1: You’re a what?
Speaker 2: I’m kind of an [inaudible 00:27:39] a few years ago, just walk into the net.
Speaker 1: I’ll believe it when I see it.
Speaker 2: I am not an ass.
Speaker 1: Okay. [inaudible 00:27:46]. I see it, not the ass. I’m looking forward to seeing this because there is also going to be a video version of that. Anyway, that’s going to be out at some point. There’ll be screen caps on that. Of course, FIFA 14 is out. PES or P-E-S, as you called it, Morgan, is out. You guys are going to be getting well into that. There’s also [inaudible 00:28:06] on there as well I’m rigth say. Right?
Male: [Crosstalk 0:28:09]
Speaker 2: Yes, there will be some hilarious role play in there. Then, of course, throughout the week, Kartik is almost constantly interviewing people. I find it hard to keep up as I package these interviews. Anyone good lined up Kartik?
Speaker 3: Yes. Actually, Laurence, I owe an interview which I will send you tonight on David Peace, author of The Damned Utd and now, Red or Dead about Bill Shankly. We talk about Shankly. We talk about [inaudible 00:28:38]. We talk about Shankly. We talk about Joe Fagan. We talk about Bob Paisley a great deal, so great interview. That will be out in the near future. The next interview, I believe, that is going to be released is my interview with Ledley King from last week which, Lawrence, I know you’ve already produced and we’ll release in the next few days.
Speaker 1: It’s a really great listen guys. Insightful and probably eludes to a lot of what he’s going to cover in his book, the front cover of which I’m looking at right now and he looks beautiful. Ledley King’s a good looking guy and well dressed as well. Kartik, whilst we’re having an a production meeting, I will say, I’m offended that I wasn’t invited to the Bill Shankly interview. I would have quite liked to be there to hear that live but more next time. Yes, it’s okay. You can reply if you want.
Speaker 3: It would have been about 2:00am your time. It was early morning Tokyo time. He lives in Tokyo.
Speaker 1: That is the international nature of the World Soccer Talk podcast. Section two, we’re going to be talking the rest of the Premier League fixtures. Some players across all the leagues, in England at least, this weekend were encouraged to wear rainbow laces Chris. My concern is, isn’t that a bit gay?
Speaker 2: It’s obviously a campaign that can be interpreted in a multitude of different ways. There are some who are quite cynical about it because it’s backed by a batting company. I think there was a leading gay anti-homophobic or [inaudible 00:30:11] and anti-homophobia charity organization that condemned the entire thing, including the advertisements that followed with it for being a bit crass and not entirely befitting the kind of idea. I almost think that really, this is where the Premier League could learn from MLS. The MLS has a company called “Don’t Cross the Line” and it centers not just around homophobias, it’s racism and all kinds of discrimination or prejudice and I think it handles it really well. Again, it’s incredibly rare, be it from both spectators and even players …
Male: To be gay.
Speaker 2: … that you even hear any kind of questionable remarks like that. If you do in the rare instances that you have seen it from players, they’ve been very swiftly and quickly punished. I think that’s the best way to do. I’m not entirely sure what the idea was behind rainbow colored laces or what it was supposed to symbolize.
Speaker 1: A rainbow is, to take away from the comedy of the ridiculousness of this situation for a second, is a fag, a rainbow flag …
Speaker 2: Yes, I was aware that perhaps could [inaudible 00:31:28]. I don’t know, it just didn’t seem like the better…
Speaker 1: You think Putin’s going to sport a pair of them?
Speaker 2: I would imagine he probably wears loafers …
Speaker 1: Good point, although …
Speaker 2: … to avoid this very situation.
Speaker 1: Except that there’s little laces on the front of loafers that you can get. You know what I mean? Like those little kind of toggle things. I imagine it …
Male: [Crosstalk 0:31:49]
Speaker 1: Lovely Putin rainbow toggles. Yes, I would imagine if you typed them into Google, you’ll get some interesting results. Who else [inaudible 0:31:58] campaign
Male: [Crosstalk 00:31:59]
Speaker 1: Joey Barton’s obviously the main face of this. He was seen lacing up his nice Adidas boots on pretty much every website for a couple of days.
Speaker 2: Well, he said he was doing it. He’s in the championship so he’s not even [inaudible 00:32:12].
Speaker 1: No, I’m sorry. Let me rephrase that question. Which relevant people were actually involved in this campaign guys?
Male: [Inaudible 0:32:18.9]
Speaker 1: I’ll rephrase my question. Which relevant actual players were involved in …
Male: [Inaudible 00:32:25]
Speaker 1: [inaudible 00:32:26] okay, exactly.
Male: [Inaudible 0:32:29.2]
Speaker 1: Who? Anyone else?
Speaker 4: [Inaudible 00:32:38]
Speaker 1: Yes, but also at the same time and this is part of it is some of the clubs, Morgan, refused to take part, didn’t they? Showing quite outrightly that they’re homophobes, they hate gay people.
Speaker 3: Yes, that’s exactly what you can’t take away from them.
Speaker 1: This leads all the way back to Liverpool earlier in the year, equipping homophobic, racists and anything banned with a list of words that they shouldn’t say. Almost like if you like a bigot checklist.
Speaker 3: Exactly. Yes, there were several clubs that came out just directly and said, “No, you’re not going to do this.”
Speaker 1: They came out?
Speaker 3: Yes, they came out, as well.
Speaker 1: That’s big support. That’s huge.
Speaker 3: Liverpool is one of them. Manchester United another one that came out and said no. Norwich, even though some of their players did actually go forward with it, Norwich officially said no, South Hampton, Sunderland, [inaudible 00:33:29] …
Speaker 1: Maybe one or two.
Speaker 3: … and West Ham. To get to the reason why it was No, it’s not because these clubs hate gay people. It’s because, as we have said, it came down to the fact that the whole thing was sponsored by a betting website and that conflicted with sponsors of these clubs. That was the main reason why a lot of these clubs came out and said no. It wasn’t because they’re against gay people. It’s because they were against the sponsorship behind it which honestly, it could have been done a lot better. You shouldn’t really be putting your sponsorship on there. I was listening to a BBC World report on it and they said it was when they shipped them all out all over, it was this certain betting website’s name was just all over…
Speaker 1: [Inaudible 00:34:19]
Speaker 3: I really don’t know. I didn’t know who it was, if it was Paddy Power or not. If it was, then, okay, it was Paddy Power. Yes, it was all over the thing and these clubs got the laces and just said, “No we’re not putting these on because that conflicts with our sponsors.” They could have done it a lot better. I think that they didn’t have to put the company’s name on it. If you want to go ahead and sponsor something like that, you don’t need to put your name on it. It’s one of those gestures that should be done without having to get commercial deals out of it. It could have been done a lot better. Still, I thought it was a very good campaign. I thought it was definitely something different at least.
Speaker 1: I thought it was a lovely idea poorly carried out.
Speaker 3: Exactly.
Speaker 1: I’ll leave it at that. Speaking of lovely ideas poorly carried out, let’s talk about Liverpool-Southampton. Both sides, obviously, playing lovely football this season and Liverpool, one of the unbeaten sides in the Premier League, going into this game. South Hampton visiting Liverpool. With them being the last team that beat Liverpool, I think it was six months ago, Kristan. Pochettino managed to outthink Brandon, yet again.
Speaker 2: Yes, again it’s that trend of last season, South Hampton seemed very good against big sides. I think that’s indicative of the way that Pochettino sets the team up. The fact that that high pressure, that high line of intensity, it bore itself out in the instance where Martin’s goal flipped his back pass for a throw in and then instantly, South Hampton have turned possession over and they’re on the attack. Now, that’s not obviously where the goal came from. Indirectly from the corner that followed, that’s what got them the breakthrough. I think the difficulty for South Hampton this year is when they’re the bigger team. By that, I mean when they’re at home and aside, I think like [inaudible 00:36:19] week it comes and sets up with the intention of being broken down rather than trying to break down South Hampton.
They leave spaces for teams like South Hampton to exploit. Now, when South Hampton are at home, those spaces don’t exist and I imagine that’s why they thrust Gaston Ramirez into the spotlight and expect him to create an opportunity. He hasn’t done that for whatever reason, I think, because he’s not really suited to the Premier League and it’s fast-paced. That’s the difficulty and that’s the story [inaudible 0:36:49] I think you’re going to see, I think, with South Hampton this year. A lot of good road performances where these opportunities present themselves but perhaps a frugality at home because of that lack of creativity.
Speaker 1: Liverpool, weirdly, starting this game with four center backs at the back, Kartik, unorthodox, Toure, Skrtle, Agger, Cissokho.
Speaker 4: Yes, Kolo Toure has played right back before. That’s not his referred position obviously, especially this late on his career. I thought that it was difficult for them because you weren’t going to get any width from those fullbacks pushing forward. Obviously, they were exploited down the flanks at times. That kind of forced Rodger’s hand where he brought Agger off and brought Jose Enrique on later to try and give them more normalcy to the back line. That is not the reason Liverpool lost this game. I know it’s an easy analysis for people who look at that side and say, “Okay, that’s the reason they lost.”
No, in fact, the central midfield didn’t function the way it had in the previous four Premier League fixtures for Liverpool. I thought that Gerrard, I know this is blasphemy but Gerrard had a very poor game, in my opinion in that now a more withdrawn role but he’s playing. If he’s not going to be able to break up plays or control tempo in that role, that’s going to expose your back four which as we said already, was a makeshift back four. I don’t think there was much creativity going forward than Coutinho’s injury. Now, fortunately, this is a one-game scenario for Liverpool. Luis Suarez will be back midweek in the League Cup match at Old Trafford and Coutinho will be back in a few weeks. There’s really one game without a creative spark in that team because Coutinho and Suarez are your two most creative players.
Speaker 1: Is it not worrying Kartik that without those guys, really, when you remove one piece, then the creativity is taken out. I know that…
Speaker 4: [Crosstalk 0:38:56] I think that every team has injuries and every team has suspensions to deal with. I think if you don’t have 10 creative players on a team, you have two or three. That’s the reality and Liverpool has two very good ones.
Speaker 1: Yes, Brendan Rodgers talking about pragmatism as well. I imagine that he would like his side to be a little more pragmatic. I was at [inaudible 00:39:15] Park today, still and saw a very pragmatic Jonjo Shelvey who had left Liverpool for $5 million. Liverpool obviously played Manchester United midweek like Kartik says. Morgan, you said something interesting, when they played Liverpool played Manchester United midweek in the Capital One Cup, you said now, Daniel Sturridge was more like Daniel Sturridge. It might be good for him to have Luis Suarez back.
Speaker 3: Yes, we got to see the real Daniel Sturridge.
Speaker 1: What’s that? Okay, you bitter Chelsea twist …
Speaker 4: As opposed to the fake one we’ve been watching for nine months …
Speaker 1: Yes, [inaudible 00:39:55]
Speaker 3: Exactly. I think, again, Kartik I know you watched Daniel Sturridge while he was at City. I obviously watched him a lot when he was at Chelsea and I just feel like he’s not the guy that you want to have things running through. He’s a decent striker but I don’t think that he’s as good as a lot of people, especially a lot of people at Liverpool, have built him up. If you look at the games this year where he scored, yes, he’s popped up, he’s had some amazing luck, he’s done some brilliant things.
Speaker 1: He’s got three on three.
Speaker 4: Four on four.
Speaker 3: Again, for the most part, where has he been the rest of the match other than for a five-minute stretch? He’s anonymous for most of the match. Unless he get …
Speaker 4: That’s the way most of these strikers are. I hear Manchester City fans talk about how great Sergio Aguero is. That’s one of my criticisms with Aguero. People say that about van Persie. That’s not a …
Male: [Crosstalk 0:40:42.9]
Speaker 1: I can see your point, Morgan. I also think …
Speaker 4: He’s not supposed to be that guy. When Suarez is there, Suarez is the guy that’s involved in the play, involved in the build-up. Sturridge is the finisher. He’s the guy making the runs and playing off of Suarez. He’s had to do a little more with Suarez out of the team. I think that changes starting Wednesday.
Speaker 3: It could, again, I just think that if having Daniel Sturridge as your lone guy is not the way to go. I think that if Liverpool did end up selling Luis Suarez in this past window as it was talked about for so much, I think they would have been in a lot of trouble because as the season would have gone on, Sturridge would have been found out and it would have been a long year for Liverpool.
Male: They would’ve [crosstalk 0:41:27]
Speaker 2: Sturridge is the first Liverpool player in the Premier League history score in the opening four games of their season.
Speaker 1: In the Premier League history, we realize how…
Speaker 2: Sorry.
Speaker 1: We realize how much that means. Yes, whatever. Yes, Liverpool’s illustrious Premier League history.
Speaker 2: I was thinking, if you look things about [inaudible 0:41:50]. He’s in good company.
Speaker 1: Yes, he is in good company. Vincent Company, someone we’ve been giving enough credit to in the Manchester United section, noted. Yes, interestingly so but I would imagine as they go on, Morgan, then your bitterness will be unrequited.
Speaker 3: We’ll see. Time will tell.
Speaker 1: Yes, okay. Well, someone who sometimes is painted as the bitter part of Mercyside, Everton, untrue but Kartik, you were rather impressed by this Everton team and an impressive performance, they put in as well.
Speaker 4: Maybe the happy side of Mercyside because they’re not always whining about past success and current failures.
Speaker 3: That’s a topic for another discussion.
Speaker 4: A lot of my great friends are Everton supporters so I will defend them to the death. Best football team around. No, not quite, not quite, not literally of course but I was very impressed with them in this game. The resiliency, I thought, when McCarthy came in and Lukaku came in as well but especially, the midfield changed. That gave Ross Barkley all kinds of space. As Morgan noted before, [inaudible 00:43:02] we were talking Barkley, draw both the fouls that led to [inaudible 0:43:06.]
Speaker 3: Both very stupid fouls too, to be honest.
Speaker 4: Well, yes, that’s right. The space opened up for them and you see now, with McCarthy, with Barry, with the wide players, Marallas and Pienaar, how they can play in midfield and how the shape is going to work. Also, with Barkley and Barkley potentially, playing off of Lukaku, how well that worked also in the second half of the game. That was good. Everton looks like a topside right now. I don’t know if it’ll last but they have not gotten off to the slow start that became so typical when David Moyes was the manager. That’s another thing to say about Manchester United. Moyes always got off, not always, but more often than not, got off to slow starts at Everton. As far as West Ham is concerned in this game, I think they’ve just been unlucky to this point but you have to be a little bit concerned that they lost at home to both Stoke and Everton. Those were the types of matches they did not drop last season.
Speaker 2: Well, this is interesting. I guess if you’re arguing that Everton are improved sides, you might be able to allow them that one. In sporting intelligence, they think that Everton [inaudible 00:44:20] keeps looking better and better. Getting Lukaku for such a small amount, obviously, making a profit and, of course, keeping Leighton Baines. Morgan, you are stunned at different points by the wonderful free kicks of Leighton Baines. You, in particular, commenting the most but Matt, Jussi Jaaskelainen somehow got us out of a number of difficult situation this season, I think. He [inaudible 00:44:43] this time. He didn’t have a backend but he wasn’t quite the superhero that he has been so far this season. Without him, West Ham could quite easily have well, I don’t know if they’d have lost every game but they wouldn’t have the points they’ve got now that Jussi Jaaskelainen this season.
I don’t think he was particularly at fault for any of the goals. Potentially, the first free kick and the positioning was slightly suspect and Leighton Baines did actually pickup on that. In his interview after the game as well he said that he saw the positioning on Jaaskelainen [inaudible 00:45:24] thought that the last time he [inaudible 00:45:28] it was open for a shot. The question mark’s there but free kicks of that quality, you just don’t stop them, especially the second one. It was absolutely superb. It’s great because Baines’s on my fantasy team [inaudible 00:45:45] for the podcast.
Male: [Inaudible 00:45:46]
Speaker 1: Do you not think of just standing someone on the post?
Speaker 2: I’ve often thought about that or instead of having you all 10 yards away, just put your wall on the goal line.
Speaker 1: Yes, I often think this. I know that offside, it’s quite a difficult one but still.
Speaker 2: It’s impractical but just on another note with Everton, Romelu Lukaku was the difference between the teams. He changed the game when he came on [inaudible 00:46:16], completely changed the game beyond recognition because West Ham would’ve been aside in the first half as far as I’m concerned. He came on and everything just seemed to gel. He just seemed to be the perfect player for the system that Everton were playing and he became sort of the pivotal player and allowed Barkley basically extra freedom to run in behind players, run at players which is what drew the fouls and from which Spain scored. Lukaku just seems to go from strength to strength. The bravery showed [inaudible 00:46:49] it was actually superb. He did everything that you could ask a lone striker to do. He was big, strong, quick, mobile and God fearing.
Speaker 1: Technically conscientious.
Speaker 2: Yes. As a lone striker, as a modern lone striker, he has all the attributes and he consistently, now, beginning to show that.
Speaker 1: Somewhat of a forerunner in the modern lone striker role, Matt. You just defined the new kind of footballer.
Speaker 2: I’m a …
Speaker 4: Groundbreaker.
Speaker 1: Trendsetter, groundbreaker’s trendsetter, fire starter although I believe that we have to tell the police different.
Speaker 2: I can’t do that anymore.
Speaker 1: Obviously, Everton face Fulham in the Capital One Cup later this week. Why is that such a composition to pronounce, I don’t know? Christen, something about cups and priorities early on in this season. With both Everton and Fulham facing very long seasons obviously and we were talking about this earlier about the longevity of the side throughout the season, being found out with the number of games. These games do bear more significance than just someone throwing them away, really, don’t they?
Speaker 2: I think Fulham and Everton are going very different directions to begin with. I think Fulham are potentially in a lot of trouble actually. I’ve discussed this a few times. I’ll not go back over it but for Everton it could be a nice sort of supplement to a really good season in the league and a the chance for them to perhaps give minutes to those free players who aren’t getting first team opportunities. I think at the minute, the first eleven for Everton, looks incredibly strong. I don’t see Jelavic dislodging Lukaku unless something unfortunate happens to him on the injury front. Whereas, I guess, for Fulham it’s probably a bit more of a hindrance if anything because it’s more games and the last round, they really squeaked through.
Bryan Ruiz was incredible, look at the score, the penalty and the way you get off the post and off the keepers, backstroke, backside. Again, I guess, in some ways, the cup games, they can be a help or a hindrance because they can, if you’re in good form, gives you a great chance to test those plays. If you‘re in bad form, then it can really compound the misery, as we’ll probably see with Sunderland this week when they welcome Peterborough.
Speaker 1: Chelsea, obviously, Fulham’s next – I’m sorry, previous opponent, two-nil. Kartik, earlier in the week, Mourinho had moaned in the media. You were quite forthright and open about criticizing him back.
Speaker 4: Yes, moaned about his players. He implied that anything that happens in the next couple of months with this squad that he’s inherited from Rafa Benitez and Roover or Vivitae and AVV and whoever else has assembled the squad other than the core players that have been with Chelsea since Mourinho [inaudible 00:49:55] are not satisfactory to him. On top of that, I think that it’s very obvious that Mourinho is looking for some sort of defense mechanism and some sort of way to project blame somewhere else when things don’t go right. We know he had never lost a European or a league match at Stanford Bridge prior to this week. He lost to Basel. It wasn’t like he lost to Real Madrid or event, he lost to Basel. Good club but still, not the kind of result you want from a Chelsea side at home.
Then, on top of that, he’s compounded that with his war of words about Mata. Of course, Mata and Luiz and Torres, if you play them where they played last season, that means they’re just simply taking Benitez’s squad. We know the Mourinho-Benitez feud. We know the Chelsea-Benitez dynamic. We know all of these things and Jose is more concerned about playing games with this than actually just producing results. Now, this is a different Premier League that Jose left in 2007. He must realize this is a more competitive atmosphere and these sorts of games with the media aren’t going to go as far as mind games with opposition and mind games in his own sides. Maybe he’ll be proven right in the end. Maybe I’ll be proven wrong but right now I just don’t understand what he’s doing unless he’s just engaging in another bout of narcissism and defense.
Speaker 1: I do find it a little bit annoying though when people criticize and I particularly find it annoying when [inaudible 00:51:32] Morgan criticizes anyone. Iin particular, I’m finding it difficult this season when we’re talking about the likes of Moyes, Mourinho and we’re talking about Mata. We’re talking about Kagawa and we’re saying why aren’t they playing them in the squad as if somehow we know better and we have the inside track on these things. Surely, there are reasons behind these things. I just think, very often, it leads to us criticizing, often unnecessarily, other players who have taken those positions in the squad such as sometimes as Ashley Young or as got in the firing line this week from [inaudible 00:52:02]. Oscar, who has been arguably, had a solid start to his Chelsea.
Speaker 3: Yes and I think the difference for me at least between Moyes and Mourinho is that Mourinho has come out and basically said, “Look, Oscar is the guy that I want in the number 10 role. I’d like Juan Mata to play more out on the right, ” which he’s done in the past. He played out there for Valencia. He’s never really done it a lot here at – he done it occasionally at Chelsea but it has not really been his thing. He’s been more of the classic number 10 for them. He’s come out and said that he wants him more out on the right and that his game, when he is playing out on the right is not what he’s looking for whereas Moyes has just got a left, Kagawa on the bench and just saied, “Well, that’s that. He’s on the bench.”
I think that’s just the difference between those two right there but again, Oscar had a great year last year for his first year in the Premier League for a guy of his age to come out and do what he did, I think, was absolutely fantastic. Mourinho said he is what he wants in a number 10. He’s the guy that he wants this team to go through and I think you saw it against Fulham. The first half was just absolutely awful in that game but whatever he said in the second half, Oscar went out and got the goal, granted it was a bit of a poacher’s goal but he still scored the goal and he looked fantastic in the second half. It just shows kind of the riches that Chelsea have in that central attacking midfield role of well, we’re not going to play Juan Mata there, we’re going to put Oscar there. We’re still going to be able to perform well.
Speaker 1: Christen, there was a kickback to the time in the Confederations Cup when it was basically, Miguel scored a goal and everyone again, goes, “Oh, he can score.” and then half the population on Twitter go, “Yes, but I knew that this time because he used to be [inaudible 00:54:04], et cetera.”
Speaker 2: Yes. There was a lot of closet Norwegian football fans when Miguel was …
Speaker 1: They’ve been aware the rainbow laces.
Speaker 2: … [inaudible 00:54:15] Again, it’s one of those things where [inaudible 00:54:24] broken clock right twice today. He’s going to score now and again but they’ve still, well, not manipulated, still crafted them into a player I don’t think he was ever really meant to be which is a deep lying sitting the field. I think he’s been typecast based on his appearance. I would still like to see what he’s like and in fact, I think, given the right time and the right training, he could still be good there, perhaps not the same level of Yaya Toure but a similar kind of player at least. The unfortunate thing now is he’s a little bit older so it’s going to be difficult to improve his technique significantly enough to operate in those tight spaces. Perhaps, you’re lumbered within being what is now. Not …
Speaker 1: Well, yes, maybe he physically developed into this and mentally developed into this. There’s very much still some of the instinctual parts of him still there but it will difficult and possibly unnecessary for him to be moved back to that, at least in the Chelsea team anyway. Kartik, an interesting thing I think I’d like you to continue that thought that you were on earlier about kind of the evolution of Mourinho now, seeing him lose, et cetera. It’s been difficult when the veneer of Mourinho has dropped in the past and there is another potential stumbling block in Swindon this week in the Capital One Cup.
Speaker 4: No, they’ll be fine against Swindon in the Capital One Cup but again, there has to be some recognition from Jose that he’s come back into a difficult situation. Look, he’s gone into front running clubs in the other domestic leagues. He’s gone to in between his time leaving England. Now, Roberto Mancini had won the title several seasons in succession at intern. Now, Mourinho did get them a European Cup triumph but he inherited a squad there. Same thing in Real Madrid, he inherited a squad in Pelligrini that was very good that had 96 points the previous season. I guess he improved on what [inaudible 00:56:27] and Pelligrini had accomplished but maybe, only marginally, in the mindset of many Madrid supporters and he wore out his welcome there.
He also claimed there was a conspiracy where Barcelona were getting all the calls in European matches and provided no evidence of such a conspiracy and made this declaration very public. I think since then, the media has been more skeptical of Mourinho since that semifinal in 2011 when he made these allegations. He comes back into England in a situation where it’s much more competitive where the side he’s inherited has not won the Premier League the last three seasons. Unfortunately, he replaces a manager whom he loathes who has achieved European success with the club. Even though he mocked it by saying, “Well, the Europa League is not a Chelsea level competition”. If you call that a competition, you might as well try and win it which is what happened and Benitez isn’t the one that got eliminated in Europe, it was actually, De Mateo that put them in that position.
I cannot understand his psychology right now. Mourinho is a very smart individual and we know this. Very manipulative individual also, as well. He’s imparted a positive sense of victimization, if you understand what I mean, in his squad. Chelsea acted like the victims. They played like they had a chip on their shoulder but they used it well to conquer the Premier League, create perhaps the best squad in the history of the Premier League. That’s debatable but perhaps the best squad in the history of this league. Now, he comes back into a situation where things are not as they may have appeared to him when he was sitting in Spain. This is not going to be an easy job by any stretch of the imagination and he’s firing off, making excuses about things and alienating, to me, the guy who was clearly the most influential player on that squad the past two seasons.
There were Chelsea supporters – Morgan, you may be able to speak of this. There were Chelsea supporters who I thought were loyalists to Jose, Jose can do nothing wrong, who are now beginning to turn on him in the last couple of weeks from my interactions with them. It’s because of the Mata thing, more than all the other things I outlined. They don’t care about the other stuff I’m saying but it is about his handling of Mata. I’m not sure Jose is going to have the supporters with him if this continues, this kind of soap opera on the press and Chelsea are not running away with the league title, which I don’t think they will.
Speaker 3: I agree, It does seem like there’s been a lot of [inaudible 00:59:06], I guess you could call it, among the ranks of the Chelsea supporters as far as Mourinho goes because we have seen in the past that people were just this guy’s a god when it comes to Chelsea and I think now you’re seeing a lot of people questioning why he’s doing this. Again, it’s not like Juan Mata was the guy that like, “Yes, he played really well. We thought he was really good.” This guy was the player of the season the last two years. He was the guy that the fans and everybody voted as the best player that Chelsea had. Again, I agree the handling has not been very good but he’s given his reasons for it.
I’m not going to apologize for him. I don’t know that I’d necessarily agree with his reasons. I think Oscar is definitely a good player and a guy that I don’t have a problem with the Chelsea team running through but I think when you have a dialogue with Juan Mata, you’re disposed you need to use them. I think it’s foolishness. It probably is a bit of his ego towards not just Juan Mata but I think also towards Spanish players. We have yet to Cesar Azpilicueta this year. That’s one that I’ve been clamoring for since the beginning of the season. He continues to use Branislav Ivanovic at right back. Again Ivanovic had a very good game against Fulhamd but you got to remember, it was against Fulham.
Ivanovic is not the long term right back at this club. Cesar Azpilicueta is the future right back at this club and I think that if this, I guess you could say, phasing out of the Spanish players of a team continues then they’re going to be in a lot of trouble I think. They’re going to have a lot more issues this season where as it could just be so much easier if he would just come in and maybe compromise a little bit and start using these guys. As we know, Jose Mourinho is not the biggest when it comes to compromise.
Speaker 1: Compromise, yes.
Speaker 4: I’ve heard just one quick theory about this which I don’t necessarily buy but I heard a Chelsea supporter in the last 48 hours tell me or last 24 hours tell me that he thinks it’s because Jose got such grief from the Spanish media. Got such grief from supporters in Spain, has trashed Spanish football but he decided once he got to Chelsea that the three Spanish players were expendable to him because he had such a grief about that now about how he was treated in Spain, which it’s human psychology. If that’s the case, if it’s true, you can condemn Mourinho for not being bigger than it but we’re all humans. Maybe he has some degree of resentment and perhaps a lot of it’s justified because Madrid supporters are ridiculous.
Speaker 1: I find it hard to continue that but, yes, I guess there’s the school of thought. I’m not part of that though …
Speaker 3: No, I’m not part of that school of thought either but I’m just say that that’s out there now. People are saying …
Speaker 1: Yes and it’s wearing rainbow laces. Incidentally, maybe if we want to support internationalism we should be encouraging some sort of UNICEF flag. Surely the laces can become some sort of great advertising campaign in general anyway, with or without Paddy Power. I’m just wondering, laces, it’s the next big thing. Maybe some of the footballers wouldn’t do it because they have those ones that tie themselves, you know. Did ever you have those when you were a kid?
Speaker 3: No I didn’t have money when I was a child.
Speaker 1: Right.
Speaker 3: It must be nice. What’s it like living out there with the top 1%, Lawrence?
Speaker 1: I tell you what Morgan, it’s great looking down on you [inaudible 01:02:38].
Speaker 3: Yes, you must mean Velcro laces.
Speaker 1: No I don’t mean Velcro laces. I mean those laces which literally they just kind of they tighten. Like they just…
Speaker 4: Yes, they’re the ones where he clap his hands and one of his maids would come out and tighten his laces.
Speaker 3: Yes.
Speaker 1: Exactly and I wouldn’t have to look down.
Speaker 4: Back to the Future 2, those shoes. Okay, yes.
Speaker 1: Exactly.
Speaker 2: Lawrence took the advice don’t look down on people too literally. That’s why they were self tying. He never saw the staff get in and do it for him.
Speaker 1: I thank gentle, gentle, Magda for that. In the final part of the EPL Talk Podcast, on the World Soccer Talk, we’re going to be talking breaking news, Breaking bad possibly for Paolo Di Canio.
Speaker 1: Not an accusation that he is some sort of a meth dealer. I would imagine if he didn’t get work sometimes soon things can get a little tricky. After the three nil mawling away from home to West Brom. Matt, the [inaudible 01:03:44] has been tapped.
Speaker 2: Yes, yes he has.
Speaker 1: Initial thoughts?
Speaker 2: I’m there, I’m going to take you behind – no. If you saw the reaction [inaudible 01:03:59] on Saturday after the game, it’s more of a party. Honestly, I’m not sure, I’m still processing it. I’m still – it sounds quite emotional. I just think that, on one hand, he’s not been over very long. He’s bought in a load of new players and been given a kick five games into the new season and it just seems a bit short, a bit silly. On the other hand, there’s the fact that we have 13 games, he’s won two of them. He’s got one point from five games this season and things have not been going well and his behavior just in general has been a bit odd [inaudible 01:04:50]
Speaker 1: For someone in such a position of responsibility.
Speaker 2: Yes, I think when he came there was – I honestly believe and I know this [inaudible 01:05:02] as well that [inaudible 01:05:02] last season. Part of the [inaudible 01:05:09] comes in does an excellent-ish kind of job and motivated the players and we [inaudible 01:05:17] and they stay up, excellent job done. To then bring all this new players, they restructured the club [inaudible 01:05:24] huge, huge cultural changes at the club. This isn’t just a change of manager, this was a change of culture within the club. It’s really important that the people understand that. Then things just go – well it didn’t go wrong, it just never get going.
The performances have been a bit lacking in something, there’s been moments where they look very good but then there have been overwhelming moments were things have gone very badly. The defense [inaudible 01:05:56] stupid goals after looking secure for large parts of games and going forward they haven’t looked threatening enough. They’ve created sort of decent half chances [inaudible 01:06:08] but they’ve never really gone and been able to completely take the game to teams. Year after that the stuff about criticizing players in public and then just the bizarre nature of what he did in the end of the game yesterday and going over to the fans. He was just sort of trying to let them know that he understands that they’re angry and it’s his fault and stuff. It just never seemed to work and I just don’t think that some of the fans quite took to him. As soon as the things started to go a little bit sort of haywire and wrong, that was it. They turned very quickly, very, very quickly.
Speaker 1: Kris you’ve been quite vocal about your – well just after the sacking on the Sunday on a Sunday as you say, how selfish. Just in general, the overall situation at the club has been a little bit bizarre. What’s it been like to be covering that?
Speaker 2: Exactly as you said, it’s been bizarre. I think I’ve said that the tactics were his perhaps biggest failing because playing a loose 4-4-2 with so many new faces was always going to be a recipe for disaster. I can help but feel that his consistently inconsistent management was also a problem, and not just to say but also it’s actually witness. I mean Cabral is probably the best embodiment of that, he signed – I spoke to someone who covers Barsel and he said “Look, he’s very basic in the field. Can stop the ball, pass it five yards brilliant.” He starts [inaudible 01:07:43] in central midfield but actually plays really well and Di Canio justifies letting him [inaudible 01:07:47] go because he says Cabral’s his top midfielder.
Really confusingly after about two games he drops Cabral and then proceeds to say that Cabral is now bottom choice behind even Ced Lossner in central midfield. Lossner obviously had been a right midfielder. It’s things like that you think well where is the consistency. I know it was described as management by hand grenade but I think it was just management without forethought was a better way of putting because…
Speaker 1: The worst combination of hand grenade and the lack of full thought.
Speaker 2: I just never saw any kind of consistent strategy with what he was doing. Hanging players out to dry and things like this in public. We’ve seen with Mourinho in particular, he forges this also against the world mentality with his squads. I fell like there was an us and them mentality in some the squad but the us was Di Canio and his coaching staff and to them was the players. When you’ve got language barriers and these kind of issues. He talked about that as well. The fact that players couldn’t really understand even very basic phrases like “squeeze up” and they had to be simplified to just up. You think that if anything, he wouldn’t want to criticize his [inaudible 01:09:09] in there because you’re trying to fester a unity and a harmony between those players. Yet I fell like in criticizing John O’Shane, even Criticizing Cabral, it just fractured the squad off into little pieces.
It made it so much harder for them to come together, whereas in the eight games he had prior to the end of the season last year. It was pretty easy for him to get that unity because none of the players wanted to be relegated and they were all pretty demoralized from having Martin O’Neill as their tactician for the previous 16 months. That probably makes for the fact that the games were often because it’s the end of the season and teams were desperately chasing points. I think it was a perfect storm for him. Whereas this season, he’s just been too naïve on too many fronts and I don’t think all of it was due to his age because he is 45.
Speaker 1: Sometimes you don’t want the storm to continue, you want them to be some calm weather. I guess the impressive thing here Kartik is how quickly Sunderland have acted. Really it’s quite interesting to look at how quickly in to this season this club effectively pulled the trigger.
Speaker 4: Yes, I think what happened last season was that Sunderland stuck with Martin O’Neill for entirely too long. Matt has referenced earlier that both he and I believe that Sunderland would have been relegated if they continued with O’Neill, yet they didn’t dismissed O’Neill until March. These signs of Sunderland’s malaise began right from the beginning of the season. They were very direct tactically but they didn’t have a Plan B and they let it go on for a long time. When they brought Di Canio, I agree with Chris also, it was a perfect storm but was also a much needed change at that point because I firmly believe that Sunderland would have been relegated under O’Neill. Actually Wiggin would have stayed in the league which means maybe the chain of events from [inaudible 01:11:09] Martinez going to Everton doesn’t happen.
Now it seems like they need someone who is going to take the squad, which was completely remade during the course of this summer, several double digits transfers, 12 or 13 new players in. Most of them have not [inaudible 01:11:27] with English football and work with them, There’s a language barrier Chris discussed so you have to have maybe a manager that speaks Italian that points to Robbie Di Matteo doesn’t it. And someone who can mold all these personalities together because it is a fractured dressing room. It is a fractured squad. It’s a club that is very, I think, is very much feeling like they’ve under achieved in a city with a massive supporters base. Also an owner in Ellis Short that has continued to throw money down the drain one manager after another, one transfer window after another, allowing new managers to remake the squad and those managers ultimately failing.
Speaker 1: Matt, moving forward I guess Allen Kerveshi’s wife is running the atrium. She’s kind of excited like we were saying pre-pod – oh, Allen you’ll never guess what, it’s everything we’ve prayed for more.
Speaker 2: She got an email notification from the Premier League there was an opening.
Speaker 1: Yes, yes exactly, yes.
Speaker 2: [Crosstalk 01:12:36]. I’ve been doing some monitoring. The Twitter is saying this, but of course that means that there is now a vacancy, the first vacancy in the season. Who’d have bet on Paolo Di Canio being the first one to vacate.
Speaker 2: Nobody saw this one coming.
Speaker 1: We’ll talk about Paolo – I guess now would be a good time to talk about Paolo Di Canio but we kind of have. I think there was nothing out of this when he first came. I don’t think he’ll be amount of the job for too long. There’ll be someone else who needs relegating .
Speaker 2: I’d be surprised. Honestly, I think he’s done a lot of damage to his reputation.
Speaker 3: You don’t think there’s a team possibly in a lower league that would give him a chance, especially after [inaudible 01:13:17]?
Male: [Crosstalk 01:13:18]
Speaker 2: This is kind of the problem is that when he left Swindon ignoring all the breaking and distilled photographs of himself and other narcissistic tendencies after hours, he spent an awful lot of money on agents. He brought in 24 players. Yes he got them up but, again, it’s at what cost. Swindon were in transfer and Bogos and had to sell Matt Richie up the leagues [inaudible 01:13:45] just to keep the lights on quite literally. You can’t really be Machiavelli in these days when you want to try and get promotion in the lower leagues, you have to be quite shrewd. I think that really his caught in something of a bubble now in terms of he’s not really shrewd enough to work in the lower leagues and it seems like he’s not diplomatic or composed enough to work on the top leagues.
Speaker 1: Of course Matt, where does Sunderland go from here?
Speaker 2: I don’t know. There’s room is – the betting – we’re working on the betting because they simply get it right more off than they get it wrong. They’ve got Roberto Di Matteo as odds on favor at the moment. Like how Kurtik said, that would make sense. He speaks Italian, a strong Italian core at the club. The fans [inaudible 01:14:38]. On the other hand they could go and there are people on Twitters and the Genesis assessing that they’re going to potentially look for a British route. Honestly, I don’t know if the club know, we’ll see. It’s all speculation. I think Roberto Di Matteo would be a good choice. From the personal point of view, I would not be unhappy with Roberto Di Matteo. I think he is a good coach and he plays [inaudible 01:15:06] should be a bit pleasant for some known fan. We’ll see, we’ll see how it goes. It could be anyone. It could be Allen Kervishi, with any hope.
Speaker 1: Christian, whatever led to this is obviously quite a big thing. How much of it do you see as a balance of Di Canio? How much of it do you see as a balance of his dressing room kind of leaning towards this?
Speaker 2: I think ultimately his management is what has cost him. There was no consistency from him.
Speaker 1: What about the West Brom game, et cetera? How much is his own size contributed towards this poor downfall and how much has he sort of figured in terms of factoring in.
Speaker 2: I think his decisions have obviously fact in. Like I said, still only playing 4-4-2 when you’ve got such a language barrier is a wise idea because I think the 4-4-2 you need to be very compact and you need to be very organized and you can’t do that when your players don’t speak the same language. Some of them can’t even string together basic phrases or sentences in another language which is not a criticism, you know we’ve all struggled at the linguistics I imagine when we were in school. You have to face the facts and I think sometimes that was Di Canio’s problems was that he got lost in the fact and he cared too much for himself preservation. There were moments and facets of his approach that I quite like. I thought [inaudible 01:16:41] two session a day and got the players fit and focused on diet hat was very good and you could see benefits of that I think in Adam Johnson’s specifically in how trimmed he looked.
Throwing players under the bus in public was never going to be a wise idea. I think when you’ve got such problems like that you need to fester a collective very quickly. You can’t do that when you’re saying to Sky Sports that John O’Shane hasn’t been good enough and you’re saying one minute that Cabral is your first choice central mid fielder thus why you [inaudible 01:17:12] go, the next minute he’s seventh choice.
Speaker 1: Seven is a long drop. What do we actually think about the performance against West Brom there Matt?
Speaker 2: I don’t think it was a three-nil performance in terms of I don’t think West Brom was good enough to win three-nil. I think at times – again it was just typical performance this season so far. At times they looked good and they got bogged down in their attempts to play and they kind of created half chances for the front two but nothing clear cut where you think that they should have scored. Then they just let themselves down by really just lack of concentration at the back. [inaudible 01:18:02] it’s a cliché but you can’t get away with it at this level. You cannot get away with continued mistakes in defensive situations.
I don’t think that [inaudible 01:18:13] good gaming goal as well, that’s been amazing criticism at the club in general not just [inaudible 01:18:19] the fact that people are trying to taking it [inaudible 01:18:23] they’ve allowed [inaudible 01:18:24] to go. The fact that [inaudible 01:18:28] and that’s completely understandable, but it is a step down. [inaudible 01:18:32]is not at that level. I think the performance yesterday wasn’t the reason why Di Canio was sacked. It wasn’t particularly any worse than some of the ones that have been this year but it was just an accumulation of things and it kind of showed what had gone wrong. It was a microcosm of things that had gone wrong throughout the season.
Speaker 1: All of those things that had gone wrong.
Speaker 2: I’m not saying throughout the season, I mean the five games we’ve had so far. It’s dragged on already as [inaudible 01:19:08] this year.
Speaker 1: Up, I would imagine a phrase that we’re going to have to get used to. Maybe not get used to on the podcast. Three-nil West Brom in the end positive results of course for West Brom a good one for Steve Clark there Kartik.
Speaker 4: Yes, good win to finally show some attacking intent and some ability to play with the kind of openness the flashiness we saw from West Brom at times last season. I think what was most interesting though is that Clark continues to get his tactics right. He’s been able to great [inaudible 01:19:51] and now there is obviously a solidity that’s built since the transfer window shut and they played very well. I agree with Matt that it really was not a three-nil type performance but it was one or two-nil efficient match at home and the type of match just West Brom’s going to need to win if they’re going to avoid being in a prolonged relegation fight this season.
Speaker 1: Champions elect that let Arsenal, Kartik as you called them, three- one against Stoke. They almost switch roles in this game. Arsenal scoring from three set pieces, Stoke, obviously, with the open players. Everyone was tweeting and then a weird stat in the second half. Stoke, 65% of the possession in the second half and only 21 few have been passed than Arsenal, which I think says something about both teams.
Speaker 4: Yes, Arsenal has become more pragmatic the last few seasons. We’ve talked about this before Lawrence how Arsenal’s become more – their shape has gotten better, they’ve had player that have gotten stuck in when they needed to. I know the Arsenal-Stoke rivalry, if you can call it that, has brought that term back in to the forefront in English football. Aaron Ramsey got a goal today, which is appropriate against Stoke, continuing his great run. Aaron Ramsey right now for me one of the best players in the Premier League. Maybe the best Welsh footballer on the planet, believe it or not. Even though there’s a guy that went for a hundred million or something that’s Welsh too.
Speaker 1: Really Kartik the person who backed him from the start was Piers Morgan.
Speaker 4: Yes, Piers Morgan tweeted that today, which was hilarious because I don’t know how many times during the course the last season Piers Morgan would have tweets like “What is Wenger thinking? What does he see in Aaron Ramsey that no other human being sees?” Well that’s. Now, he’s come good, Piers Morgan has tweeted “I backed him all along”.
Speaker 1: Piers Morgan on the fourth or the 12th or maybe the 12th of the fourth, I can’t work it out. Depends on if it’s an American or English one. “What does Wenger see in Ramsey? A complete and utter liability #Arsenal.” I imagine the word liability is also just automatically linked to the word #Arsenal. “Boom”, he then says on the 22nd of the 9th showing the way around the [inaudible 01:22:20]. “One-nil, unbelievable, Aaron Ramsey again, thank God I saw his potential last season and stood by him.” Maybe [inaudible 01:22:30] sarcasm. I don’t know.
Speaker 4: That tweet that you read is not the only tweet about Ramsey. When Piers Morgan and Morgan our Morgan can relate to this because we had him on television covering football matches when Fox still had the contract …
Speaker 2: Oh god, don’t remind me.
Speaker 4: [Inaudible 01:22:48] and thankfully now NBC’s contract with Pierce Morgan will not be near our television sets on Premier League on Saturdays and Sundays. Morgan, do you remember Piers Morgan talking about how rubbish Aaron Ramsey was repeatedly on the air. Why does Wenger replay this guy. This is the type of player you would never see in the top four team in English football. He’s the Cartiff City player, I think he once said.
Speaker 2: Cartiff City’s ironically a Premier League team now.
Speaker 3: Now they are right but the point being Piers Morgan is just a comical wind up. More seriously on this game, Arsenal are showing a resourcefulness in how to win matches. Although I suspect the biggest test of the season is going to come next week at the Liberty. That’s going to be a big game and that’s going to tell us a lot about Arsenal. Arsenal have faired very poorly against Swansea, since Swansea came up into the league. Even faired poorly at the Emirates against them. This is going to tell us a great deal about Arsenal this game, very big game against Swansea.
Speaker 1: We should also say it is okay one second to be slagging off a player and the next to be absolutely in love with them. That’s just the nature of football, we just love the irony. Someone should talk about Stoke really shouldn’t they because I think we said in the pre-season, at least I said it in the pre-season podcast that I thought that they would at least try and change things up a bit this season. In the beginning it was difficult to see. There were signs today in this game though frankly Morgan.
Speaker 3: Yes, there were. I guess Sparky has either a better idea of how to play on the ground as Tony Pulis did or I know maybe …
Speaker 1: Well everyone’s got a better of – there are eight year olds with a better idea. [Crosstalk 01:24:32]
Speaker 3: Exactly or maybe it’s justTony Pulis didn’t know how to communicate it to his players how he did it but we’re seeing the same – again. Keep it down, don’t hold it long you idiot.
Speaker 1: Up. They’re all like wait, do you mean push-up or kick the ball up?
Speaker 3: Again it’s the fact that he’s also done it with pretty much the same squad that Tony Pulis has. I think yes their style of play has definitely been drastically different this year under Mark Hughes than it has been unto Tony Pulis. I still for the life of me do not understand why Jonathan Walters is starting games for Stoke. He’s been so poor for them. He’s had some just shocking performances this year. Again two of the goals that they let in were because he just could not keep up with his man on a set piece. I think that once they wean themselves off of Jonathan Walters and then Marko Amautovic looked pretty good today.
He’s had a couple of decent games for the. If he can get maybe some form under him maybe they will be able to drop Walters completely and just not have to deal with him. I think he’s been a huge hindrance on them this year. We’re really watching with demise of a player who was a pretty decent Premier League striker for a couple of years.
Speaker 1: [inaudible 01:25:53] Morgan 2016. I told you Jonathan Walters was worth keeping an eye on. This [inaudible 01:25:58] side are going to do great at this tournament.
Male: [Crosstalk 01:26:01] fantastic avatar.
Speaker 1: They really will be. I believe he’s actually very good on the ukulele. Cardiff City nil, Tottenham Hotspur one. Yet another one-nil win for Tottenham Hotspur, Matt.
Speaker 2: Yes, there’s so much swapped identities in the Arsenals state games. It’s like Tottenham swapped identities with their North London rivals of the 80s and early 90s. A retro reference for all you out there. To be fair, for Tottenham the season goes on. They’ll look back at these one-nil wins and at the moment you people are sort of not being overly critical but are raising questions to how are they only winning one-nil. Should they be not putting these sides to bed a bit more easily.
Speaker 1: [Inaudible 01:26:55] anywhere, I don’t know.
Speaker 2: He might have gone somewhere, yes. The fact of the matter is they brought a lot of new players. They’re still gelling as we’ve said on numerous times already this season that they still need time to gel and to actually sort of find that identity together as a team. They’re still winning games, it doesn’t matter whether you them one-nil, two-nil, three-nil, whether you win them with beautiful football or get through eventually with a last minute goal, they’re still picking up the points and putting up themselves in position that when the players, let’s play with each other properly, as they will do eventually. This Tottenham team is going to get better as the season goes on. They’re going to put themselves in an excellent position for the league.
Speaker 1: Yes, to at least being in the top four, not to actually win the league. Cardiff City is starting off with somewhat of a difficult fixture list though Kartik.
Speaker 4: Yes, very difficult but they took three points against Manchester City at home and played very well in that game. Salvaged a point against Everton at home. Again, a very good result for them. Got a nice result at the KC Stadium against Hull, a draw there. Hull has been better than most people have expect. I think Hull has actually been pretty good since second half of the Chelsea game, they’re opening games. That’s not dropped points for Cardiff at all to get a point at Hull at this stage of the season. Today they were right there. Marshall made a number of great saves, but Spurs have something about the side.
A resourcefulness and we saw that when [inaudible 01:28:31] laid on that goal. [Inaudible 01:28:32] he came on for the last four minutes of regular time plus stoppages and I felt it had a good impact. [inaudible 01:28:39] is playing pretty well from where I sit. [inaudible 01:28:47] has been pretty good as a surprise starter as far as I’m concerned. I thought maybe he’s going to get loaned out again this season instead EVB has worked him in to the squad. The competition for places at Spurs I think has led to a real fight in the squad. Everybody knows when they’re on the pitch they need to make most of the opportunities.
We even saw that in the Europa League game earlier this week, which unfortunately for Spurs Danny Rose got injured in that match and was unable to play today and they don’t have a natural left back replacement so Vertonghen has gone out to left back. I just think Spurs there’s something happening there. It’s not just all the money they spent but the competition for places is helping the squad and I think the squad harmony at least at this point even with all the new players appears to be real good. Maybe sooner or later some of the guys that are hold overs from previous seasons are going to start to sulk but it hasn’t happen yet.
Speaker 1: [Inaudible 01:29:44] in Norfolk or at least maybe even North Norfolk, Norwich nil, Astonvilla one. Christian does this mean that Lambert can change his backline around and still have that old fashioned approach, give hakuna matata? Which means no worries for the rest of your days or if it’s this weekend, it means no worries for the rest of the game.
Speaker 2: Wow, yes. I think really that the old [inaudible 01:30:18] heck of a lot [inaudible 01:30:20]. I thought he was absolutely outstanding and if …
Speaker 1: [Crosstalk 01:30:23]
Speaker 2: The penalty said there was a string of really top saves in there. I think it’s something more important to draw from that Villa. They didn’t need Benteke to win because there’s been a real reliance on him this season. Again, you probably don’t complain when he’s scoring the goals but it’s when something like Saturday happens and he gets injured and you have to go off. That’s a real concern. He had good form going into according to his three meeting against Norwich but to get [inaudible 01:30:58] off the mark is a big one. He himself was quite lucky because I thought the chance he missed before the actual goal was terrible. Other than that, it was the very [inaudible 01:31:12] performance from Villa. They were steady, I thought. For Norwich though it’s a surprise because we went into this season with such optimism for everything Hughton had done and particularly the signs he made, they seemed all very shrewd, bought from kind of developmental leagues with players who probably we’re ready to move on to the next tier but it just hasn’t quite worked on them yet.
I don’t think it will continue, I think it’s bad form rather than a bad season. It’s something you’ve got to remember is it that they’ve got a really shotty record against Villa as well. I think they’ve only won one of the last eleven meetings prior to the weekends. One of the last 12 now is we have boggy teams, I think New Castle is [inaudible 01:31:59] and this is just another instance of that piling it on because again we’re only five games in to the season. That’s just over a month’s worth of football.
Speaker 1: Yes. Seriously, you didn’t like hakuna matata? It’s a wonderful phrase.
Speaker 2: I loved it, I just didn’t want to top it.
Speaker 1: It is hard. I was trying to think of a Disney references in football over the weekend. If anyone has got anything. Other people talk about it being Mickey Mouse football or something.
Speaker 2: Can we reference [inaudible 01:32:29] at all?
Speaker 1: Why?
Speaker 2: [Inaudible 01:32:33] of life.
Speaker 1: [inaudible 01:32:38] I thought that would be a play. I also thought it could be hakuna mataba, which could actually be a great line for the team. Anything else?
Speaker 4: They’re better than that.
Speaker 1: I imagine it’s difficult to think upon the spot. I’m not imagining that, I actually know it’s difficult to think up on the spot. If you do have any Partitino Pocahontas but it’s difficult to fit in there because of the parallels between a Native American and indeed a Spanish crusader in many ways.
Male: It’s also somewhat difficult [inaudible 01:33:11].
Speaker 1: There’s plenty more. If he can think of any tweets [inaudible 01:33:16] I’d be very interested to hear them. Anyway, [inaudible 01:33:19] two-nil win. Swansea over Crystal Palace. Earlier in the week Swansea obviously demolished the 10 man Valencia three-nil, Bonnie’s influence on this side quite brilliant but it didn’t need to even be on the pitch today. Swansea managing in both early sessions in both halves within 80 seconds, a meteor broken deadlocked. Early in the second half they’d done exactly the same. It really just felt as if at times Swansea was just cutting Crystal Palace open at will. [inaudible 01:33:53] was completely different level today actually. I think his play was incredible. Hold up play was fantastic. Crystal Palace struggled to keep up with that and in bringing on Campania in the second half it would change things up a little bit but by then it pretty much looked like a training game from 65 minutes on. I’m not even kidding it, it was pretty much training game for Swansea by the end of the second half. Anyone else impressed by John [inaudible 01:34:18] ?
Speaker 3: He was fantastic.
Male: [Crosstalk 01:34:20]
Speaker 3: He gave you everything. It would have been – if he would have been sent off, it would have been the greatest 10 minutes in Premier League history. He was.
Speaker 1: [Crosstalk 01:34:35]
Male: He does look like one of the vultures from the Jungle Book.
Speaker 1: Sure, we can be offensive like that. That’s fine, Schmack, that’s a one. Everybody wants to be Schmack you put in the comments section.
Speaker 2: From the Aristocats, yes.
Speaker 1: The Aristocats, yes.
Male: Yes, I think on a serious note [inaudible 01:34:54] is that player in the middle of a park that…
Speaker 1: [Inaudible 01:34:58]
Male: [Inaudible 01:35:00]
Speaker 1: Yes.
Male: Supporter that what you want [inaudible 01:35:02] season and he’s going to really help them two way player box to box player that that was maybe the one thing really missing in their squad last season other than [inaudible 01:35:13].
Speaker 1: Excellent distribution to stay out there on the pitch. Although Crystal Palace did somewhat allow that and I think Ian Holloway was right post game to say that they did look as if he side had given up. At least maybe just after the second goal went in early in the second half. They did create chances but they didn’t create enough. I meant there weren’t enough clear cut chances. I don’t even remember one save in the game. The [inaudible 01:35:38] which even looked relatively threatening. So disappointing from Crystal Palace. I think at one point Holloway described them as embarrassingly good Swansea and then they were embarrassingly good but they looked like a, I’m going to say it, top six side in the Premier League. Wonder if they can actually complete that at this season.
Male: [Crosstalk 01:35:59]
Speaker 1: Yes, but not of the standard of the Ropere League I’m talking. I’m talking about the Champions League here Matt, these team were great.
Male: Wow that’s a big call.
Speaker 1: Yes, it is big but I think [inaudible 01:36:14] done a great job. This is the first time I’ve seen them play. I will see them play again in this season. They were excellent, really excellent team. Sorry Chris, there was a reference in there?
Speaker 2: Under the seas there?
Speaker 1: Good, under the sea say, good. No it’s good, under the Swansea.
Speaker 2: I want to be like you Tucker.
Speaker 1: No, that’s not bad. Yes, that’s actually pretty good.
Speaker 2: Have you got a friend to meet you?
Speaker 1: Oh, there we go. There we go he was just looking down his normal bedtime playlist. What’s it with you Kristan, Newcastle two, Hull City three.
Speaker 2: I think honestly Newcastle just completely contributed on the downfall here. For some reason defending was associate, attacking was barely decent. For the opening still at 25 minutes they started spraying it around with real [inaudible 01:37:15]. It was the 4-3-3 that I would argue had previously contributed to New Castles best stand down party in the season they finished fifth. I imagine the hope would be that it doesn’t can it in the same way that he hid last time when they were beaten. Then again [inaudible 01:37:35] he’s someone who is barely more technically adept than his predecessor Donnie Simpson but on a defensive standpoint he’s not nearly as reliable. He’s a little bit one paced and you can argue he was at fault for two of the goals yesterday. In fact, I actually don’t know how many he could get a free header in the penalty box tells you there’s some kind of problem in that defense.
It’s something that needs to be rectified and it’s a quite perplexing situation given that when Pardew started, Newcastle’s new defense was the shining light of his coaching. Now it seems that in fact they can attack what they can’t defend. So really consistency is the order of the day and from a whole perspective, he attempts to say, I thought they were very good on the counterattack. I think and Bruce said afterwards, if they can keep the core players, I’m thinking Huddlestone, Livermore and Aluko fit over the course of the season I think that it should be quite comfortable when saying it because in particular Sone Aluko was very impressive. When you consider he’s come from Scottish football, I remember reading he provided – his family, sorry, had given up their savings so he can fund his move to Rangers. You do have to appreciate the immense journey that guy’s come on. Was also famously offered a trial by Juventus. Quite how that came about, I’m not entirely sure. He gives them that little X factor, gives them that dash of creativity they need in the final third. I didn’t really see any other player offering them that so if he gets injured, I’d be curious to see who fills that void.
Speaker 1: Great result for Hull City.
Speaker 2: Wonderful result for them. An important role when early in the season. You need results like that early on just to establish yourself and get yourself that little buffer on the teams below you. It shows they can do it because they can quickly transition thanks to having Tom Huddlestone who at times yesterday was playing the kind of [inaudible 01:39:37] that made you realize why he was so highly rated. He really can distribute a ball in a variety of different ways with a real quality.
Speaker 1: I’ve moved on from football now guys, I’ve just started coming up with Disney songs that are football related. I’ve got some. Anyone else wants to join in? I put them in the bottom of my note you can read along with me. I just can’t wait to be Ledley King.
Male: Oh God.
Speaker 1: Anyone, can you feel the Vogel love tonight? I like the can to fell the Vogel love tonight. I think that one’s pretty good. I always thought – if you remember The Jungle Book? Anyone else remember The Jungle Book? Great film. I imagine Damien Comolli singing “Trust in Me”, no?
Male: [Crosstalk 01:40:23] yes.
Speaker 1: Yes, it was sung by a snake, yes.
Male: I can show you the way.
Speaker 1: Yes, I imagine John Henry sitting back and being like …
Male: [Crosstalk 01:40:36] …
Speaker 1: Shining, shimmering something …
Male: How you got the eyes when he was trying to hypnotize people.
Speaker 1: The Princess Jasmine look?
Male: [Crosstalk 01:40:47]
Speaker 2: We were singing something from Aladdin.
Speaker 1: Yes, so either way the references can – Beauty and the Beast? Of course, [inaudible 01:40:58] , the beast. I’d imagine some sort of [inaudible 01:41:02] reference in “A Whole New World”. Can’t think of anything else right now. If you have any – maybe Pinocchio, I imagine there’s a Pinocchio in there somewhere..
Male: [Crosstalk 01:41:11]
Speaker 1: Surely something to do with Pinocchio. Pinocchio [inaudible 01:41:15]. There’s more bring them to us on Twitter, We would love to hear your suggestions. In the meantime, it has been great for you to join us on the podcast obviously. Thank you everyone. Christian, thank you.
Male: Thank you for having me.
Speaker 1: Matt, thank you. Thank you very much.
Male: Glad to be here.
Speaker 1: Morgan, it was lovely as always. Kartik [inaudible 01:41:39] it’s great to have you on the podcast. Like you say, more interviews coming out this week first of all with I just can’t wait to hear Ledley King and then secondly, what, Bill Shankly is going to …
Speaker 4: Well no, it’s not with Bill Shankly directly but it’s with David Peace.
Male: [Crosstalk 01:41:58]
Speaker 1: Bill Shankly was part of the interview.
Speaker 4: They do have a lot of books about talking …
Male: You should do that one day. [Crosstalk 01:42:08] get a ouija board. You don’t have to…
Male: [Crosstalk 01:42:12]
Male: Do an interview with Bryan Clark.
Speaker 1: Now, if ever you wanted to make the most of the Google Hangout, I feel like getting a ghost on Google Hangout is the way to go. Some people shouting at their iPod right now.
Male: [Crosstalk 01:42:27] that’s what they’re shouting.
Speaker 1: Bambie, surely there’s a reference to Bambie somewhere. Anyway.
Speaker 2: [Inaudible 01:42:38]
Speaker 1: Yes, in Mulan. 101 Dalmatians. Anyway it’ll be great to hear those interviews, more of those – Snow White. Thank you very much. Kartik, take use out.
Speaker 3: Unless you’re David Moyes, tonight you’re enjoying your football.
Speaker 1: Matt, you didn’t tell us you had your own forum.
Speaker 4: Keep it quiet.
Male: [Crosstalk 01:43:14]
Speaker 1: Is that footballrumors.com? [Inaudible 01:43:19]. Needless to say, I have the last laugh.
Speaker 2: Needless to say, I have the last laugh.