Mediawatch: Coutinho x 27 and Dean Saunders defends…
5 months ago, 3 Jan 15:20
This is our league Where to start with Dean Saunders and his nonsensical guff on talkSPORT? As tempting as it is to start with his insistence on using the words “our league” over and over again like some kind of footballing Farage, we should instead begin with the Pep Guardiola quotes that prompted this outburst. “We are going to kill them. I think the federation (FA) has to reflect. Here in England, we don’t protect the players and that is a big mistake. You have to look for the quality, not the quantity. You can play every three, four or five days but not play every two days. It is not basketball, it is not tennis. The players need recovery.” Guardiola is of course right; by any sensible measure, it is ridiculous to expect modern-day athletes to play four games of football in ten or 11 days. It is a view echoed by just about every manager in the Premier League in 2018. Saunders’ response? “It’s tradition. Your granddad used to take you to Boxing Day games and the supporters love it. The stadiums are full. The players like it, the fans like it… and the managers like it.” Mediawatch obviously missed the part where Guardiola raged against the tradition of Boxing Day football (and Saunders’ granddad). But carry on, Dean… “The FA will decide the fixture list; you just manage your football team and don’t complain about our league. I’ve played in foreign leagues and they are nothing like our league – it’s brilliant.” Saunders has indeed played “in foreign leagues”; he spent one season in Turkey with Galatasaray and one season in Portugal with Benfica. Almost 20 years ago. Thus he is an expert on all things foreign. Oddly enough, Mediawatch chooses to place more credence on the opinion of a man who has won 12 league titles as player and manager in Spain and Germany and is about to win a 13th in ‘our league’. We suspect he may have rather more data on the fitness of his own footballers than a man who spends his time embellishing stories about Brian Clough. Unfortunately for Saunders, he has not managed a full festive fixture list and absolutely not complained about our league for five years; Chesterfield sacked him in November 2015 after four straight defeats. Coutinho Coutinho Coutinho We’re not saying that the Daily Express website is obsessed but the word ‘Coutinho’ appears on their homepage 27 times on Wednesday morning. Our favourite headline: ‘Bookies ‘convinced’ Coutinho is joining Barcelona – and they reveal exactly how they know’ SPOILER: It’s because some people have placed some bets. Pat Cash For obvious reasons, The Sun are the one newspaper who were not briefed by Liverpool and/or Philippe Coutinho that a £133m offer from Barcelona would be accepted by all concerned. But they do have a back-page story on the Brazilian… ‘LIVERPOOL are ready to demand £100million up front in CASH for Philippe Coutinho.’ That is one hell of ...
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