Tag: Manchester United

Algernon Martial: Built Up, Knocked Down… Repeat (Every Nanosecond)

It used to be said that there were sections of the press who liked nothing more than to “build ’em up and knock ’em down.” We seem to live in a more sophisticated age than that, now, but only in so far as that the up-building and down-knocking processes engaged by the media have become so frantic and chaotic that it can be impossible in any one moment to be able to fully process whether any particular individual or institution is supposed to be lauded or despised. But what happens when a football club – and not just any...

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Saturday Evening Live! Manchester United vs Liverpool

Good afternoon, sports fans! And welcome to our live-blog on this early season clash of the titans, between Manchester United and Liverpool. Actually, you know, all is not quite well in the House of Trafford and the House of Anfield, at present. Manchester United’s end of transfer window activity had the hint of a single father in a toy shop at ten to five on Christmas Eve about it, performances have been sluggish even before defeat in their last match against Swansea City, and Louis Van Gaal had to say “I am not a dictator” at a press conference...

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Sunday Night At The Football Palladium 3: Manchester United vs Liverpool, April 1968

Good evening, football fans. This evening’s featured match comes from the First Division of the Football League on the sixth of April 1968. Manchester United are chasing a League Championship and European Cup double, and with eight games of the season left to play, any of they, Manchester City, Liverpool or Leeds United could still achieve the former of these goals. With this in mind, the Match Of The Day cameras travelled north to cover the critical match between Manchester United and Liverpool. Commentary comes from the squawkmeister general, David Coleman.   You can follow Twohundredpercent on Twitter by...

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David Moyes & The Cult Of The Football Manager

The axe, which had been glistening in the background at post-match press conferences for much of this season, finally made contact with David Moyes’ neck this morning. Moyes’ departure from Old Trafford was a most modern managerial sacking. Trailed on social media, the lead item on the lunchtime news this afternoon, and with considerable excitement – in some quarters, at least – over the effect that the decision had upon Manchester United’s value on the New York Stock Exchange, the removal of the club’s manager couldn’t really have happened at any point in the past. David Moyes – appointed in the summer of 2013, became a laughing stock throughout the course of the previous nine months, has been sacked before the final whistle has even blown on this season. To blame the manager, however, can sometimes feel like a reflex reaction, football’s emotional equivalent to the involuntary jerking of the knee upon it being tapped by a medical professional. Football managers have become larger than life in a near-literal sense, charged with the job of defending their players way past the point of anything like rationality whilst devising sophisticated tactical plans the likes of which Machiavelli would be proud. In an era during which personality has become everything, the modern Premier League football manager has become something far greater than the sum of his parts and Moyes found himself...

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The Fall And Plateau Of Manchester United

It is more of an FA Cup word than a Champions League word. But there’s no denying that during their 1-1 draw with Bayern Munich this week, Manchester United were “plucky.” The FA Cup analogy is not entirely inappropriate. I’d missed the meetings where everyone was told that United were in for the sort of walloping Arsenal and Tottenham have almost patented in big EPL games this season. So I was a little surprised that United were so reliant on scrapping for scraps of possession…and for the gushing reaction this produced in ITV’s Old Trafford lair. Manager David Moyes’ Manchester United has been a disjointed, ugly watch. The flow of the better sides playing at or near their best, including – painfully for Moyes – Roberto Martinez’s Everton, just hasn’t come from Rooney et al this season. And it’s not as if Everton were ugly and disjointed under Moyes, not most of the time anyway, even if “ugly and disjointed football” could easily be what Marouane Fellaini would tell John Humphrys when asked for his ‘occupation’ on an edition of Celebrity Mastermind. I’m too young – just- to remember Wilf McGuiness’s Manchester United side in the immediate post-Matt Busby era. I can imagine, though, that there are valid comparisons to be made, even if history rarely recalls that McGuiness’s eighth-place finish in his only full season was an improvement...

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