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Paper Round-up

Red Rants’ Paper round-up

Today marks the start of a new feature on Red Rants. Every day, apart from match day, you’ll find an article containing the links to the major stories regarding Manchester United as they appear on the national newspapers.

Disagree with the Mirror? Feel like the Guardian has done a good job? Want to heap misery on the Daily Mail? Vent your anger in the comments section below and we’ll duly pass it on!

On the Guardian, Kevin McCarra reports how the events unfolded at Carrow Road yesterday, praising Giggs and Scholes for their performances.

The same concepts can be found in the Independent.

The duo dominates the sport pages that the tabloids dedicate to United, with Ferguson describing them as the “best players ever for United” on the Sun.

The story features in the Mirror as well, along with an interview with Giggs, where he claims that “scoring goals just keeps getting better with age”.

The Telegraph reports that Rooney and Cleverley will miss England’s game against Holland. Rooney’s absence could lead to Welbeck making his first start for the national team.

In his column on the Daily Mail Gary Neville analyses the contribution that older players offer to their teams, while the Express reports Fergie’s delight at his team’s resilience.


Daniele (@MUFC_dan87)



  1. Traverse

    27 February 2012 at 12:50

    A tale of two celebrations yesterday for me. Liverpool celebrating beating a Championship side on penalties for the 3rd biggest tournament in the country like they’d beat Barcelona 5-0 in the Champions League final was fucking hilarious. Almost as hilarious as Carroll and Suarez ducking penalties. Bottlers.

    Then there was our celebrations upon Giggs scoring a 92nd minute winner to keep The Premier League in our own hands. A man making his 900th appearance scoring the winning goal in time honoured United fashion was story book perfect, and the United players went ballistic.

    • Stephen

      27 February 2012 at 13:58

      @Traverse: I couldn’t agree anymore, all my mates were texting me about the over the top celebrations from the Liverpool players, Saurez cheif bottler or was it Evra’s fault?

      • Daniele

        27 February 2012 at 14:03

        @Stephen: apparently, in South America, refusing to take a penalty is interpreted as a sign of bravery. 😆

        • Stephen

          27 February 2012 at 14:09

          @Daniele: 😆 😆 😆

        • Opti

          27 February 2012 at 16:09

          @Daniele: 😆 😆 😆

    • Opti

      27 February 2012 at 16:11

      @Traverse: Good point! Also, this game smelled like Blackburn away from 2 years ago where we could not win and it cost us the title against Chelsea.

      I SMELL #20!

  2. RedDevilEddy

    27 February 2012 at 12:54

    I love reading things by Gary, he’s so intelligent. He knows what to say in different circumstances, and his autobiography is one of the best things I’ve read in my life. He should write a novel!

    • Daniele

      27 February 2012 at 15:41

      @RedDevilEddy: I agree, he’s really opinionated, well spoken and straight to the point. I can’t believe he’s writing for the Daily Fail though. That newspaper is an absolute disgrace, not to mention that its view are diametrically opposite to Gary’s. In terms of politics, at least 🙂

      • Stephen

        27 February 2012 at 16:29

        @Daniele: The Mail is an abomination of a newspaper, I totally agree. But Gary’s column is one of the true shining lights. He is very bright and articulate, he also knows his stuff and does not come across too partisan. He is a true United legend and looks like he will be big hit in the media.

  3. Stephen

    27 February 2012 at 16:36

    The Spurs game next Sunday is a massive game, especially after they were trounced by Arsenal. Since Redknapp has been linked to the England job he has been stuffed by his nearest rivals and has drawn to Stevenage, certainly looks like he has the pedigree!
    City are at home to Bolton, so you would imagine that is almost a home banker. If we loose we will be 5 points behind, not insurmountable but it would be very tough for us to win it from there. The United of old would be slipping through the gears now, this is a real test for the new bread

    • RedDevilEddy

      27 February 2012 at 16:53

      @Stephen: We tend to have a pretty good record at White Hart Lane. And our players seem to have the upper hand on their star-players, which is a good thing. Rafael always seems to make Bale his bitch, Modric has been kept quiet by Carrick on numerous occasions, and if I’m not mistaken both Rooney and Nani have a pretty awesome goal record against them! We should have enough to beat them, especially with Parker out, the only worrying point for me being Lennon vs Evra. Hope Patrice gets it right this time!

      Just saw Atkinson has been appointed ref….. Forget it, that’s this game lost! 🙄

      • Stephen

        27 February 2012 at 17:17

        @RedDevilEddy: Our record is defiantly very good, but this is probably the best Spurs side for years. You are spot on with Lennon against Evra, he tears him a new one every time they play each other. This will be a tough game bro, I know you are a Welbeck fan but for me I would go with Hernandez, he pace and movement would cause Spurs some real issues.

      • Moscow is my heaven

        27 February 2012 at 17:44

        @RedDevilEddy: We had a good record against City at Old Trafford too. Right now (apart from the Arsenal game), they are looking much the better side so I wouldn’t be surprised with a draw/loss.

        Their midfield is also far superior, but their defence is all over the shop so I would like to see Nani and hopefully Valencia on top form, running and tearing them to pieces. Rooney needs to stop the ‘Look everybody, I’m Zidane’ impression and get in the box like a real striker because I don’t think Welbeck nor Hernandez are good enough to punish Spurs.

      • Daniele

        27 February 2012 at 20:35

        @RedDevilEddy: how the fook do we get to play Chelsea away,Liverpool at home, Norwich and Spurs away while those moneybags across town get to play Fulham at home, Villa away and the mighty duo of Blackburn and Bolton at home? If we win on sunday i can definitely see number 20 coming our way. Even a point wouldn’t be a total failure. I agree with the comments above, Atkinson appointed to referee a game in London is as suspicious as Redknapp’s bank account and we better be ready because Spurs are a quality side, despite the hiding they got yesterday.
        Looking at yesterday’s game, their defence lacks pace in the middle, but even so I’d start Welbeck anyway as he can draw the man out, just like Arsenal did with Van Persie. Welbeck and Rooney are both reasonably quick and should be a handful for Spurs’ defence. Rafael or Jones is a tough one because, as much as I love Rafael, Bale seems to go down too easily these days and Rafael has still the tendency of diving into a tackle too quickly. Furthermore,he’s already been sent off at the Lane last year so i think that Bale might fancy his chances against him

    • Opti

      28 February 2012 at 04:56

      @Stephen: Forget Parker. Ledley King had a pauper of a performance against Arsenal. He is über slow and Chicharito + Rooney up front should win it.

      Vally could be back and Nani on form would win this 3-1.

  4. RedDevilEddy

    27 February 2012 at 23:34

    I know a lot of people don’t like Ashley Young on here, but I would like him to start against Spurs. He always seems to get the better of Walker, they seem to know eachother very well. From what I’ve understood they were best mates at Villa, and in circumstances like this it’s always the attacker who has the upper hand. If Young hasn’t done anything noteworthy for 60 minutes or so I would sub in Antonio, but I’d definately start with Ash and Nani!

  5. RedDevilEddy

    27 February 2012 at 23:42

    I’m starting to lose faith in Ando, I said before the season began that this would be his last chance to show everyone how good he can be. He did well with Cleverley but as soon as he left he dissapeared. He didn’t do badly, but with the demands United have got he really has to improve. I don’t doubt his talent, I doubt his intelligence, which really should have developed by now. I want to see how he does when Cleverley is back, but if he still is the same old-same old he should look somewhere else.

    • Stephen

      28 February 2012 at 10:24

      @RedDevilEddy: Honestly mate I am sorry to hear that. I know I have been one of the chief anti Anderson drum beaters and honestly I don’t like doing it. I truly want to support all of our players and have done rigorously in the past with, Scholes, Giggs and Neville when Donibrasco and Grog where needlessly and ridiculously like attacking them, showing no respect for their achievements and loyalty. Also I have stood up for Jonny Evans and Patrice Evra so I know how hard it is when a player you love is being barracked.
      Ability is only half of it in football, mental strength it what cuts players above the rest. I am sure Ando has ability, but he seems to want to mess around in training and go missing when we need him to grab the game by the scruff of the neck.
      Fletch, Gary Nev probably don’t have the most talent, but have great discipline and desire and that what United is all about.

  6. RedDevilEddy

    28 February 2012 at 01:01

    I gotta say I think it’s fucking absurd that we haven’t scored from more corners this season. I mean, we’ve got what? 2 goals from corners when in February? 🙄 Both came against Liverpool as well, one at Anfield and Rooney’s first at Old Trafford. I know Ando scored a header against Norwich but the way in which he got the ball it can hardly be classified as a regular corner. I played some footy today, got two assists from corners, in one single game. And a team like United can’t score more than 2 in a whole season?? It’s ridiculous! I think we only got one last season as well, the only one I can remember is Berbatov vs Liverpool. I remember Neville saying in his autobiography that United never really practiced corners, which is pretty baffling! I mean, if that’s the case then what is the point of it? Opponents can just kick it out of play under stress, it’s supposed to be a reward of hard work but instead it’s just meaningless to us. Needs to get sorted!

    • ForeverRed

      28 February 2012 at 02:24

      I confess that I haven’t read Gary’s book yet, but hearing that corners are not practiced much doesn’t surprise me on the evidence we see each week. In fact, set pieces as a whole don’t seem to get much attention paid to them, though the stats in this regard are obviously not a big enough concern to our coaching staff. Surprising oversight to my mind – over the course of a season this could add up to quite a few points gained or lost. It’s also something that doesn’t depend on the stage of the game or current score; you practice a few routines on the training ground and rotate through them in the game situation. They’re not all going to work out, but just getting one or two crucial extra goals could be the difference when the points are tallied up at the end of the season. At the very least, what is there to lose?

      Also, is it my imagination or do others notice when we get a free kick outside shooting range (ie 30+ yards, but still well into the opposition half) we very often take it quickly but frequently sideways or backwards? Is there nothing more creative we could come up with in practice? I understand switching the play etc., but why don’t we work on a few less predictable options – for example getting someone in behind the full back with a pre-worked routine, and a decoy run etc? Again I don’t expect these to work out most or even much of the time, but would be nice to see something different tried every now and then. Could be the difference between 1pt or 3pt against some of those well drilled defenses we come up against and sometimes find hard to break down in open play. We might get something from it, at least the first couple of times we use it until other teams wise up. But then you switch to the next one!

      On another note, I thought De Gea, Ferdinand and Evans played really well as a unit on Sunday. Best for a while tbh and goes to show that the central defensive partnership and GK need time playing together to build understanding, which we’ve not had enough of this season. There were a few last ditch clearances and we sometimes struggled to retain possession of the cleared ball, but that’s more to do with what was (or wasn’t)going on in front of the back 4 after Norwich got on top… But well done – and 2 or 3 fantastic saves kept us in it before they finally equalized. Also nice to see a couple of really decisive takes from De Gea on crosses. I’ve not always been his biggest fan (only because he’s not yet got enough confidence/experience of the EPL) but I think he will be fine, especially with, fingers crossed, some stability in front of him for the rest of the season. Also looks like he’s bulking up a bit, which is good news.

      • RedDevilEddy

        28 February 2012 at 02:53

        @ForeverRed: Just looking back you see evidence of how set-plays can effect a season. I mean, we scored both our 1999 Champions League final goals from corners, and in 2007/08 an awful lot of vital goals came from exactly set-plays. You’ve got Vidic and Saha’s matchwinning corner-goals against Everton and Sunderland, Tevez’ last minute equalisers against Spurs and Blackburn, and then of course the match-winning free kicks scored by Ronaldo and Hargreaves against Sporting, Arsenal, Bolton and Portsmouth. Corners and free kicks were vital for us that season, can’t believe we don’t work on it.

        You were talking about creativity from corners, and we have some incidents of exactly that in the past. In 2007/08 we’ve got the build up to Tevez’s match-winning goal at Anfield, then we’ve got two legendary build up plays against Chelsea at Old Trafford in January 2009. Too bad one was dissalowed though, although we scored from the following corner! We’ve seen Young and Rooney combine “creatively” on free-kicks against Arsenal in the 8-2 hammering, but other than that it’s been pretty shallow. Just think, had we scored from just one of our 30+ corners in the games against Blackburn and Newcastle at Old Trafford we would have had 3 more points, and be above City in the table! It’s frustrating…

        Just to compare, corner-goals by City have won them over 10 points this season. Kompany at Anfield, Lescott against Villa and Spurs, Dzeko against Wigan, and I think Yaya Toure has popped in with one or two as well. With the likes of Giggs, Nani and Young in the team you would think this team would have had more pedigree from dead-ball situations 🙄

        • Opti

          28 February 2012 at 04:57

          @RedDevilEddy: what about Lyon draw tevez goal in 2008… wasn’t that a corner too.

          What happened… oh CQ?!!

        • Stephen

          28 February 2012 at 10:31

          @Opti: I can’t see what CQ would had added with regards to corners mate, really. People still hold a torch for him but he has left us twice and has failed both times he has departed. Sides like Stoke practice corners religiously, as it gives them an edge, top sides tend to work on systems and playing through the middle. Also there does have to be a element of luck on corners and delivery, a lot of our corners fail to beat the first man, which is annoying to say the least.
          Also I agree that it is a shame to see young talent leave, but Morrison has to look at himself, his case is certainly not the managers fault. If he was so highly regarded why has he signed for a Championship side? His attitude stinks and for me good riddance. Pogba is different, is he being greedy, well it certainly sounds it. But maybe we could have introduced him earlier and maybe he would he felt as if he was part of something, who knows.

  7. Opti

    28 February 2012 at 05:10

    Looks like Pogba is leaving MUFC at end of season after rejecting a 20,000/week deal from United. If true, Fergie’s gamble sees the two best prospects leave United in 1 year (Morrison and Pogba).

    That would be a shame.

  8. jos

    28 February 2012 at 06:34

    Read this article:

    How incredibly difficult it is with young players!!! How the hell could Fergie mould few fledglings like Giggs, Scholes, Becks etc into world class stars (or how easily they could have been lost forever).

    A manager’s job is NOT as easy as it seems. Signing Pogba might not be as easy as we all think. Who knows what is going on inside his mind.

    • Traverse

      28 February 2012 at 15:44

      @jos: His agent’s in his ear. Thats the problem. Agents make their money from big signing on fees, which you typically only get by moving to a new club. It’s in the agent’s best interest to move the player, not the players.

  9. tonymontanna4united

    28 February 2012 at 12:50

    Regarding pogba, i really dont understand what the issue is regarding his contract demands. Some are saying hes holding this club to ransom, and that we shouldnt give in to his demands. That if hes not loyal to the shirt he can get lost, and its no big deal.
    Well all i’ll say is, what the hell do we expect. Hes not a local lad, hes got no real ties to this club, hell he left his boyhood club who had trained him up since being a small kid to join us, so why do we feel he suddenely owes us anything?
    Why do we expect him not to be angry about his lack of playing time, when according to the manager, one of the key reasons we didnt go further in pursueing a world class midfielder, was because we didnt want to block his progress.
    Why shouldnt he be asking for the reported £40k a week contract, when he sees us offering the same sums for other young players from other clubs?
    Yes hes a reserve player with only 15 mins of top level football under his belt, but there was never any guarantee jones for example would step up and do a job here. Theres a big difference between playing for blackburn and united afterall, but it didnt seem to put us off paying £20m for him and giving him a £50k a week contract.
    Nor smalling, a player who went from non league to the PL within 18 months. A player with about 4 PL games under his belt, didnt stop us paying £12m and putting him on a good contract did it. Likewise the da silva twins, bebe (who we never even watched play a game live) etc, all on good contracts from the minute they arrived.
    So whats the problem offering pogba the same? If, as i think were all agreed, we think the kid is going to go on and become a truely great player, like i believe smalling, jones, the da silvas all will become, then why should he too, not be rewarded with a contract that shows his potential in the same bracket as the other above mentioned players.
    Just seems to me that were fine offering £40/50k a week to young players who have achieved very little in the game, but only when its other teams players, and not our own.

  10. Stephen

    28 February 2012 at 13:15

    Interesting point, Welbeck is holding out for £40k a week and has certainly achieved more, but marginally. Playing Devils advocate it is similar to the Rooney case who was also hanging out for every single penny, who like many who do not come through the youth set up, are guns for hire.
    If Pogba can achieve that elsewhere then you can to a point understand where he is coming from. Is it right? Probably not, I have seen various young United players driving around Manchester who haven’t kicked a ball in the first team, driving top top of the range Range Rovers.
    Personally I am sure there can be some compromise, it is also down to the players desire to stay. If he wants to stay there is a deal to be done, if not then we have no chance. For me it looks like he wants to leave to the highest bidder, which is his right. But how many games does he think he will get in Italy? It is a league which does not generally promote youth, maybe like some they look after their wallet, rather than their careers.

    • tonymontanna4united

      28 February 2012 at 14:02

      @Stephen: The way i see it stephen, is that this club has set a precedent over the years, in that were a club that spends a large amount of time, effort and indeed money based on the potential of young footballers.
      That goes back years. We spent £12m on a scrawny kid from portugal based on his potential. The year later we spent £30m on a scouse kid based on his potential. Following that we spent another £17m on nani, £18m on anderson, £12m on smalling, £18m on de gea, £16m on jones. The list is endless.
      Thats well over £100m spent there based on our belief in these players potential.
      Now i think in pogbas case, were all agreed the kid is a special talent. For an 18 year old, there really are going to be few players of his age group in world football, at his current level.
      Now considering that, considering his potential, considering the fact that he offers us hope in a position that we are desperately lacking in, and here comes the clincher, considering that the club already owns him, and wont have to pay a transfer fee for him as hes already at the club, i think were being just a tad unfair here with the boy.
      Yes hes achieved very little, yes even £20k is an absolute fortune to you and me and yes he is looking like an ungrateful little so and so for turning it down, but considering what weve spent on other young lads in the past, and considering the potential and where we think he can go, considering the fact we already own him, i dont get why were being so stingy with him.
      I mean £40k a week based on his potential seems fair in comparison to our other exciting young talents (welbeck, clevs, fabio, rafael, smalling, jones) all of whom are on similar money.
      Taking into account pogba had no major transfer fee, £40k a week on a 4 year contract comes to something like £7m odd over the course of those 4 years.
      About the same amount we spent on zoran tosic. A bit more than we spent on bebe and obertan.
      Is he really not worth that based on his potential?
      I’ll leave it at that. I will say i too dont like the way young players today act like theyve hit the big time before they’ve even learnt to bloody walk, but at the same time i think its fair to say thats just the way football, indeed life in general, is headed.
      Theres nothing we can do about that anymore, much as we wish we could.

      • RMJ

        28 February 2012 at 15:09

        @tonymontanna4united:the problem is mates where does it end? There is a wage structure in place and if we break it we set a bad precedent. We are struggling to hold wages under 50% of expenditure and we are a few clubs i the world to do so with wage inflation that is going on and in a country like England where you loose half of your earnings to taxes this is a bigger problem. People bring up Rooney but that guy is our talisman and almost irreplaceable and yet I doubt he is earning Ronaldo-esque

        If he doesnt take it then we move on..he is no where near the complete article and wherever he goes he will have the mercenary price tag. A few years of lower wages and if he does well he will be rewarded. Kids these days want better pay on hype and in a results driven industry that is unacceptable on all levels

      • Stephen

        28 February 2012 at 16:00

        @tonymontanna4united: £40k a week for a teenager who has only played minutes in the Premiership fair? Really? Mate that is stupid money, it would set a massive president.
        As Bobby Charlton said, “At United money finds you, you don’t need to look for it”

        • tonymontanna4united

          28 February 2012 at 17:03

          @RMJ:@Stephen: In a way it is admirable the way we stand our ground, but then regardless of whether we think it was right or not, its still clear that rooney held us over a barrel over his contract dispute, and ultimately he, not the club, won.
          What sort of a message does that send out to the rest of the team directly down to the young kids?
          Im not siding with pogba or the millionaire footballers complaining about their “pittance” wages, i just think when weve been so willing to pay other young lads such vast sums of money for doing as little as pogba, then why should we not do the same with our own kids.
          Smalling had played about 2 games for fulham when we bought him, so not much different to pogba, but he got a nice big contract.
          As did the da silva twins, despite not getting any action for nigh on 18 months due to a petty dispute from their club who werent happy about the way we “poached” them from them, so didnt play them. They still got good contracts.
          And im not even going to mention bebe.
          Its probably too late now and the boy has gone but really we shouldnt have left ourselves in this position to begin with.
          The boy should have been handed a new contract over a year ago when we could all see his talent, and either given a good few games with the first team this season or been sent out on loan and we might have avoided all this.
          If he does go then nothing we can do about it, but i do hope we learn a few lessons in the way we work with these young lads (ie getting them tied down to long term contracts before these agents come onto the scene, keep to your promises about playing time or loan them out etc) in the future so we can avoid all this happening again with the likes of keane, fryers, petrucci, lingard, cole or any other talented youngsters (particularly the local lads).

      • ForeverRed

        29 February 2012 at 02:36

        I’m with you on this Tony, albeit with the same sadness/reservations about agent/player power. 7M over 4 years would come to look like a Cantona-type steal in today’s terms if he proves to be as good as he’s been hyped. (And we’ve certainly found less effective ways to spend 7M in the recent past). Also, I can’t believe Fergie does not appreciate this himself, and would let another high potential talent leave. Unless, of course, he doesn’t think he’s good enough or have the right mentality to make it at Utd.I really would have liked to have seen more of him than we have though and there have been opportunities missed in that regard. You feel like you’ve been denied the opportunity as a fan to judge for yourself…

        And here’s where I disagree with Fergie’s approach of late to a degree, because the fans want to see these young players, especially in ‘less’ important games, rather than the lack of imagination/adventure we get by playing the Parks and Gibsons (prior to his departure), or even others out of position. We know all too well what these players can and can’t do – it’s a few of the 18-19 yr olds from the youth set-up I’d like to see tested more myself. After all, we want to be excited and entertained and can afford certain games to pass us by if, I feel, we get the satisfaction of having learned something about the youth we hear so much about. Maybe just me, but in this regard, I think Fergie seems to have got more conservative/loyal to the trusted foot soldiers as he’s got older and less willing to play the 18-20 yr olds who have come through the youth set up. Interestingly, this doesn’t necessarily apply to those of the same age and also unproven, who have been bought with big money from from Blackburn, Fulham etc., as has been noted previously. Grass is greener perhaps?

        • Opti

          29 February 2012 at 06:22

          @ForeverRed:Guys, it’s called precedent (as mentioned by others as well). Pogba may “only” be asking for an increase of 4 million (extra 20K/week) over 4 years, but he is just one player. The remaining 24 players in our 25-man squad would be up for a boost as well, since Pogba has not proven himself at top level (yet!).

          24 players*4 million/player over 4 years = 96 million over 4 year.

          That almost 100 million, just because Pogba got his 20K raise and everyone else decided they had “earned” a 20K boost as well.

          Pogba should realize he is just one of 25 and that he needs to prove that he can fight for a spot in starting 11, THEN he can earn his wallet fat.

  11. Opti

    28 February 2012 at 16:09

    When the fook did Parents stop being parents? What are Pogba’s parents telling their son…

    Pogba: “Hi mom and dad.”
    Parents: “Hi son. What’s new?”
    Pogba: “United offered me 20,000 pounds per week over 4 years.”
    Parents: “Hmmm… that’s about 1,000,000 per year. You could be a millionaire at 19.”
    Pogba: “Yeah. My agent said I should ask for double”

    My dad would punch me in the nose for being an ungrateful and money-driven heartless SOB.


    Makes me furious! 👿 👿 👿 👿 👿 👿 👿

    • Opti

      28 February 2012 at 16:11

      @Opti: By the way, he will sign for United, because his agent knows he can sell the Pogba product much better at United than anywhere else (barring Barca/Madrid, maybe).

      Of course, as Traverse said, agents prefer a player that gets sold for massive monies every year over Giggs.


      • Opti

        28 February 2012 at 16:13

        @Opti: It’s the Curse of Rooney coming around… it infected Morrison, it infected Welbeck, it infected Pogba.

        The honor of United has been replaced with a price-tag. Congrats! F*CKERS!

        This news of Pogba ruined my day!!!! 👿 👿 👿

  12. Opti

    28 February 2012 at 16:20

    @Stephen: Ok, I realize I am just angry right now and spewing hate, but this sh*t really irks me. I think the problem has three parts:

    1) Poaching young players is not a good idea for building a youth academy.

    2) Agents ruin young players, because their business model does not appreciate potential talent. They would rather exploit current talent now and cap the players development.

    3) Big clubs are not the best place to nurture talent. Big clubs have competition in every position and breaking into starting 11 is (nearly) impossible.

    • Stephen

      28 February 2012 at 16:36

      @Opti: Spew away my friend, this is a rant site after all.. 😀

      Point 1 – I totally agree. We should have a very strong network, but due to various rules you are limited to youth in a certain vicinity.

      Point 2 – Agents get paid when players are transferred, or move clubs. This is the basis of their business model and it is flawed. Where are the parents?

      Point 3 – The Twins, Ronaldo, Jones, Smalling, Evans, Welbeck, Fletch and obviously the golden generation have proven that theory wrong. The issue for me is Fergie doesn’t seem to trust Pogba. This could be down to the drawn out contract issues though.

      Also blaming Rooney for others players wanting big contracts is at best unfair. Rio, Keane and currently Welbeck have all demanded more money, this is modern football.
      I find it funny that people show all this hate to Rooney, who got a pay rise and stayed. But love Ronaldo who also got an inproved contract but left for his “dream” club.

      • Opti

        28 February 2012 at 16:49

        Agree on parents gone AWOL for almost all young players (Chicharito is a notable exception).

        On 3, what I meant was: Youth players are players who come in younger than 18.. into our Youth Team (Academy, I guess it’s called)
        Twins — -were vote top players at United’s (semi) annual World Youth tournament and we promptly signed them, not youth players at United tho
        Ronaldo — a very special kid, though not a youth player.
        Jones, Smalling — were not youth players and were signed as immediate backups.
        Evans, Welbeck, Fletch — all youth players, but hardly starting 11. You could even argue that they’re weak points in our team (that should be replaced by proper “stars”).
        Fledgelings — pure geniuses. Big risks taken by Fergie but it paid off marvelously. That was almost 20 years ago now.

        So in conclusion, Evans, Welbeck and Fletcher are then the best (and only) United Youth players since Fledgelings to break into starting 11… hardly proof that United is a place for up-and-coming Youth/Academy Players (i.e. <18 years old).

        • Stephen

          28 February 2012 at 17:05

          @Opti: Well I could argue that at least we play youth, unlike Chelsea and City who buy talent. The one thing Fergie does do is try to interrogate young players into a side and to continue to compete, unlike Arsenal. We have maintained success for nearly 20 years, which is almost unprecedented. Welbeck, although I am not a fan is a starting player, as would Fletch if fit and Evans seems to be 3rd choice. The ideal model for United has been to build a spine with players from these shores and dress this would continental flair, which has always worked in the past.
          We simply do not go out bar on the odd occaison and spend big on players in their late 20’s. This now coupled with City’s spending power and our debt will nt happen. Personally I think the managers has done a incredible job, yes you get the odd Bebe, but you also get some real crackers too.

        • Opti

          28 February 2012 at 17:17

          @Stephen: I agree that our purchasing record of players 18-23 is pretty sublime (but not perfect) and should continue. But I am trying to say that players who start out (i.e. bought at 12-16 or younger) have very little chance of breaking into starting 11, exactly because we BUY such good 18-23 year olds.

          That’s OK with me, but it means we might lose out on a Pogba, Morrison, W Keane, and other good players in our Academy team. Therefore, I do not think Big Clubs is a good place for a good 12-16 year old academy player. Good teams just cannot afford to gamble with youth like West Ham, Milwall, Blackburn, etc… because we’re not selling clubs, so profits come from team performance, not selling of young players (Ronaldo the exception).

          That’s one reason why Pogba has not played much this year and one reason why he is on verge of leaving.

          PS: Chelsea, Madrid, and City are killing the hopes of Academy players far faster than we are… but nonetheless.

        • Stephen

          28 February 2012 at 17:28

          @Opti: I think the on going issue with Pobga has held his first team opportunities up. If he signed a contract I am sure more first team chances would have come. When Fergie declared the fact that he had changed agent, he was on the bench a lot more. Now this has come out it explains the fact why he was not there for the Ajax game.
          I suppose show us loyalty and we will give you games, yes we all want him to stay but it is up to him

        • RedDevilEddy

          28 February 2012 at 17:10

          @Opti and Stephen: Totally agree about the parenting. At 18 years of age I would love to earn £300 a week, never mind a million a year! That is fucking senseless!!! Can’t believe how some young players seem to think that the amount of money you are paid describes how good you are. Fuck off… 🙄

        • Stephen

          28 February 2012 at 17:30

          @RedDevilEddy: Parents get rich off the back of their well paid sons I am afraid. These kids come from poor backgrounds and money talks these days. I remember when Ole turned Spurs down, who offered him more money and football, but he stayed. Unfortunalty those days are long gone.

        • RedDevilEddy

          28 February 2012 at 19:57

          @Stephen: They should just offer me a contract of 5 quid per week and be done with it, won’t say those days are long gone but it’s a rare breed. People seem to play football for money these days, you look at guys who leave for Anzhi and Shanghai and wonder why the fuck they play football!

      • Opti

        28 February 2012 at 16:54

        @Stephen: On Rooney, I agree I am harsh, but the way he whored himself (no pun intended) around with the Public Statement of discontent was a bridge-burner for me. He probably was going through a tough time and Agent + Wife pushing for new surroundings and clean start.

        Rio was just greedy, Ronaldo wanted Madrid and we convinced to stay him with super-contract in last year, Beckham was run by his business/look/wife and treats EVERYTHING like a business… but none of them made public statements about United not being “competitive.”

        In my eyes, previous players were money-drive but liked the club, while Rooney made it look like he had lost hope in United…. those are slightly (but crucially) different in my opionino

        • Stephen

          28 February 2012 at 17:07

          @Opti: It is difficult to argue with that and you are spot on. But personally I think we need to move on and loose the bitterness. Rooney has the brain of an ant, but he is our best player and if we lost him we would be in trouble.

        • RMJ

          28 February 2012 at 17:35

          @Stephen: i personally think this is a problem that Fergie saw long time comming. A gud percentage of our kids who break into the first team has played football on loan in the premiership or below. There have been exceptions but why not Morrison and Pogba? A loan spell would have been perfect in terms of development. Fergie did give us some excuse about Pogba’s talents but i think the situation with his agent was already predicted and we dragged it this far so we have a better bargaining position.

        • Stephen

          28 February 2012 at 17:41

          @RMJ: That is a good point, also with Morrison his behaviour was not that of a United player Fergie gave him the benefit of the doubt but yet again he let him down. If you had the option of playing for Fat am in the Championship of 5/10k less or at United with Fergie what would you do? Really, it is a no brainier.
          A side issue, Twitter for me is also very harmful in football, I hate it.

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