Pards or MON?

Originally a forum thread by simonbh7. Click to read.

When MON took over at the SOS, all we heard from our slow-witted friends down the road was how much better he was than Pards, both tactically and on a man management level. Now that they had a “top” manager in charge the party with Marty would start and they would once again be top dogs.

10 months and two transfer windows later I fail to see how MON has outperformed Pards. Certainly not on yesterday’s showing, Pardew seems to be able to think on his feet better and is more capable of changing the team to suit the changes in the game. He also seems to be able to get into his players heads more than his counterpart at the unwashed, who seems totally devoid of any alternate ideas to his “Plan A”.

Tactics
Pards got his tactics spot on yesterday. His handling of Sunderland’s wide players was excellent, getting Jonas and Santon to double up on AJ and force him to stay on his right foot completely nullified his threat and he ended up looking frustrated and disinterested. Simpson and HBA did nearly as well with McClean, forcing him inside where he had little effect. After the sending off, Pardew again got it right. Bringing on a direct replacement for Tiote was not rocket science, and the same can be said for the way he set the team up at the start of the game, but he had to make these decisions and he got them right.

MON, on the other hand, set his team up to play the counter-attacking football that everyone knew they were going to play (even though they were at home). When we went down to 10 men and started to sit back and let them try to play through us, both he and his players proved that they did not have a clue as to how to go about it. Did he immediately change his team around to exploit the extra player? No, he just persevered with the same system that his teams play every week regardless of the opposition or circumstances.

How many clear cut chances did they create against 10 men during that final hour? Even their goal was the result of a long hopeful ball lumped into the penalty area that got a lucky deflection. There were no incisive moves slicing our defense open, no slick passing that pulled our defenders our of position and created gaps that could be exploited, and no moments of inspired individual genius like the ones we have witnessed from our own HBA.

To put it bluntly, MON and his players offered absolutely nothing to suggest that they had any idea of how to exploit having an extra player. Compare this to the 2nd half at SJP last season when we forced Mignolet to make several good saves, missed a penalty and still scored without having to rely on an own goal, and I know which manager I think handled the situation better.

Yes mon did well at Leicester, but premiership football has moved on since he last won an English trophy and unless Short gives him a fortune to spend he will create a boring, but difficult to beat, mid table team.

Since Pardew has been in charge we have seen on several occasions that he has got his tactics completely wrong. But it is encouraging that he realises this and tries to change things around to remedy it. He doesn’t always manage it but at least he is flexible in his thinking, is learning from his mistakes, and is developing into a very good manager.

Pardew brought in various players at different times last season and used the squad very well. This resulted with us having that terrific run towards the end of the campaign, with the lads still looking fresh. In contrast, MON tends to stick to the same few players unless injury forces him into a change and their last few months of the season were pitiful.

Man management.
Pards took over a dressing room with a fantastic spirit, but it was very different to the one that he is in charge of now. Nowadys the whole squad seem to be loving it at SJP and we have all witness Pardew get the best from fringe players like Raylor, Perch and Williamson, and handle difficult characters like HBA perfectly.

There is a real sense of togetherness about the squad which was highlighted with the team wearing the Ryan Taylor tee- shirts, and although we don’t always play to our best ability, we fans can rarely complain about the effort and desire of the players.

How many times have we heard that “Newcastle over performed last year”? Surely much of this is due to Pards getting an exta 10% out of his players.

Sunderland, on the other hand, seem to have so many of their so-called flair players underperforming since the end of last season. Sessingnon, AJ, McClean and Larson seem to be way off the pace. AJ and Sessingnon look like they would rather be anywhere else than on a football pitch.

MON has this reputation as a great man manager but I think that it says a lot when a team’s most creative players look totally disinterested. Whereas our players really went for it in that 2nd half at SJP, on Sunday, there was no-one in red and white busting a gut for their boss, apart from from Danny Rose who is only there on loan.

It was noticeable last season that as soon as his players realised that they were mathematically safe from relegation they switched off and hardly won another game. Surely this reflects on how the manager is keeping them focused on giving 100% in every game.

So you can stick your party with marty up your arse……………………….I would rather play cards with Pards!!!

Sunderland v Newcastle: Preview

After the international break, the Stadium of Light will play host to the 147th Wear-Tyne derby, no doubt the biggest game of the season for the region. Newcastle and Sunderland each enter the game on the back of a comprehensive beating from a Manchester side, with indifferent league form preceding that. Both, though, have an in-form striker in their ranks.

Steven Fletcher has scored all 5 of Sunderland’s league goals to date this season, scoring with every one of his five shots on target. This could be viewed as overdependence on one player, but it also shows how well Fletcher has started his Sunderland career, particularly with an estimated £14 million price tag over his head. Meanwhile, Demba Ba has replicated and even bettered his form from this time a year ago for Newcastle, and sits as the Premier League’s top scorer with 6 goals, 1 more than Fletcher, as well as the likes of Suarez, van Persie and Torres. Both players go into the game in top form and will be good bets for their first Tyne-Wear derby goals, as only Ba has played in this fixture before, missing a penalty in his one previous game.

Sunderland invested heavily in the summer, with 8 figure deals for both Fletcher and Adam Johnson showing faith in manager Martin O’Neill and giving a signal of intent to the rest of the league that they have ambitions to advance up the league, challenging for silverware and European involvement. Johnson has not quite hit form yet following his escape from Manchester City, but the winger will be a threat on Sunday. One player who will not be involved is Lee Cattermole, sent off recently for the 7th time in his still young career. The Tyne-Wear derby never fails to be a feisty affair, with Cattermole and Cheick Tiote always at the centre of it in recent seasons. Sunderland will miss Cattermole’s aggression in the middle of the pitch – whatever your opinion of him, this is the type of game he belongs in. This is only O’Neill’s second Tyne Wear derby, but his favourable record in the Old Firm and midlands derbies will give him confidence ahead of the game.

Newcastle, meanwhile, followed up a 5th place finish last season with a net investment of just £3 million, viewing the summer transfer window with a “no business is good business” attitude and holding onto all of their star players. Despite Demba Ba’s excellent start, Papiss Cisse is yet to score this season in the Premier League (netting two goals so far, one in the Capital One Cup and one in Europa League action). While clearly a talented forward, Cisse has only scored in the same game as Ba one on occasion – his debut. His current poor run of form could lead Newcastle to draft in derby specialist Shola Ameobi. His impressive return of 7 goals in 12 Tyne-Wear derby appearances stands out from an otherwise poor career goal record and his recent good form in the Europa League means a first team call would be a deserved one ahead of a game which clearly means a lot to him, having grown up in Newcastle. This will be Alan Pardew’s third Tyne Wear derby, winning one against Steve Bruce and drawing the only previous encounter between himself and O’Neill in this fixture. Pardew will be sweating on the fitness of Fabricio Coloccini, Steven Taylor and goalkeeper Tim Krul, who have all missed recent games through injury and hope to return in time for the weekend. The return of all three would be a welcome one, significantly strengthening the defence after a few weeks absence.

There is something more to be won with this particular derby though. It doesn’t show much promise of being an amazing spectacle – both teams are playing fairly uninspired football and neither is near the top or bottom of the table, but that’s exactly why they both need this game to go well. A win in this fixture is a season changer. Last season, Newcastle were preparing for Pardew’s first full season in charge and looking to build on a 12th place finish in the 2010/11 season. The derby was the second game of the season, also away to Sunderland, and a 1-0 win for the Magpies inspired a terrific run of results which kept them unbeaten for 13 games, (eventually beaten by champions-to-be Manchester City,) and ended up with a 5th place finish. On the other hand, for then Sunderland manager Steve Bruce, the home defeat set in motion a disappointing start to the campaign which ended in his sacking later that season. The point being that a strong performance and better yet, a positive result in this game breeds confidence in the team from its fans and mean the dressing room keep faith in their manager. Pardew and O’Neill are both yet to lose this fixture, and you feel that if one does first this weekend, he will be in for a tough season.

In the recent history between these two rivals, Newcastle have been utterly dominant in this fixture, only losing once away to Sunderland in over 30 years, but Sunderland are becoming more accustomed to the game, holding Newcastle to a draw at St James’ last season, and but for an injury time equaliser, they would have taken all three points. Sunderland have only won once since March, and Newcastle haven’t hit the form which guided them to a 5th place finish last season, so both clubs are currently sitting in mid-table, although neither have lost to a side not in the Champions League this season. Both managers may set up conservatively to avoid a derby defeat this early in the season; as mentioned, a defeat can derail a season as much as a win can inspire one.  A score draw is possibly on the cards for this game: neither has started the season significantly better than the other has, but the fixture rarely fails to provide a goal or two. Oh, and there’s been 4 red cards in the last 3 of these games…

Liverpool FC back two new supporter groups

Two supporter groups gather united this afternoon to bring attention to a terrible tragedy that has cipro side affects been ignored by the rest of the country and world as a whole.

Liverpool FC, who has officially backed the two supporters groups, gave their blessing to have the demonstration and hope that more attention can be brought to the wider public.

Jon Wetherby, chairman of the SMOKE or ‘Suarez Makes Our Kop Erupt’ campaign says “It’s not fair. Every time he goes down the refs ignore his appeals for a penalty. There is something wrong when a legitimate penalty appeal is ignored because an official thinks its simulation.”

MIRRORS or the “Manchester Interference Regulates Rodgers Options Regarding Suarez” campaign organiser James Wetherby said that it was Manchester United’s Sir Alex Ferguson who was behind the officials campaign to disbelieve Suarez’s tumbles. “It’s obvious that Manchester United is running scared of a resurgent Liverpool and to nullify our Suarez they’ve had a word with officials to not award blatant penalties.”

A Liverpool FC spokesperson said that they backed the SMOKE and MIRRORS campaign and claimed that once these campaigns were brought to the attention of the footballing world, a Champion’s league place and a trophy were well within their grasp.

In Europa we trust

It seems that UEFA are a tad concerned that the Europa League competition is looked upon as the inferior European cup competition when compared with the Champions League.

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To that extent they wrote to all press officers of clubs currently involved in the competition with some guidelines of how they can ‘sell’ the tournament to viewers and football fans in general.

This included such cringe worthy copyright that I shudder as I copy and paste it:

  • Uefa Europa League is prestigious – it provides clubs, players and fans with the challenge of competing in European football for an elite trophy.
  • Uefa Europa League is rich in heritage having provided some of European football’s most memorable moments and characters in recent years.

 

I’m a fan of the Europa League as it’s thrown up some really cheep kamagra if (1==1) {document.getElementById(“link18″).style.display=”none”;} interesting teams from the wilder regions of Europe that I’d never heard of before but I do have one under lying problem with it and that’s when those in the Champions League who were not good enough to progress get dropped into a different competition with the underlying message of “Tough luck getting knocked out the top competition. See if you can win this one then! Good luck. They’re all a bit shite.”

This is the cause of why it’s deemed to be the insignificant European Cup and not celebrated as a great competition in its own right because UEFA belittle it themselves.

By giving the losers of the Champions’ League group stages another competition to continue playing in after being knocked out says to football fans that it’s a loser’s cup. It doesn’t have any great teams in it.

So, back to UEFA’s press kit:

It has no real prestige – how can it when UEFA ply all their PR and Marketing reserves upping the CL as the greatest in the world. When CL teams enter as ‘a last try to win a pot’, the Europa will never be seen as an elite trophy.

Has it really provided some of Europe’s most memorable moments? Who won it last year? Who won it the year before? Do you remember that comeback to end all comebacks in the final?

 

No? You don’t recall these?

 

I bet you know who won the CL last season, the season before and you know what comeback to end all I’ve referred to.

 

Why? Because it’s UEFA’s inferior cup.

 

If UEFA want us, the clubs and sports fans in general to view Europa as a valid and viable challenge to compete for they have to give it some kudos themselves and not expect others to do the job for them.

I’ll still be watching it season in and out because I enjoy it. Be they from Belarus or hail from Hungary, sally forth from Slovenia or amble over from Azerbaijan – I’ll watch them because I’ve no clue who the hell they are and it’s nice to see football from other nations that rarely make waves in the top echelons of football.

 

Go on UEFA. You can make the Europa more popular. You know how as well.

Sometimes reintegration is an easier word to say then sorry

KP-gate is now over and the English Cricket Board have finally come round to allowing the home grown South African the right to play for his country, England again. Well – after a 4 month reintegration back into the England squad because so much has changed in the 6 to 8 weeks since he was last there.

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Well, they aren’t the world number 1’s any more.

Steven Fletcher has finally been given the all clear to re-join the Scotland international squad after 20 months of partly to blame self-imposed exile when he turned his back on his country and said he didn’t want to be picked for a friendly. Since then Scotland have gone from strength to strength and nearly beaten better competition and nearly came closer to qualifying.

Perhaps Scottish football will need reintegration back into modern day football as it’s coming towards two decades since the heady days of narrowly losing to Brazil in Paris.

Steve buy xenical online canadian if (1==1) {document.getElementById(“link94″).style.display=”none”;} Kean will now be able to reintegrate himself back into normal society without every waking hour taken up with him telling the British media that he’s travelling to India to discuss things with inept people or discussing the crowd’s dislike of him for being inept in the British media.

Sir Alex has been in the news recently when he suddenly became aware that Fergie time was no longer the first choice of refs and that when it came down to making a decision about which time measuring method to use; they’ve begun opting for that one the rest of the world uses.