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44 minutes ago, nyikolajevics said:

Liverpool has scored one goal in their last 7 hone games, which was a penalty from Salah. This is unbelievable, would be remarkable even from Sheffield or from Wycombe in the Champo.

 

Also very strange how clueless Klopp seems to be. They have many injures indeed, but their recent record cannot be explained only by that. Against us, 8 CL-winner was starting, it didn’t work. Against Fulham, he benched players like Fabinho and TAA and played yougsters, didn’t work aswell. Keeps playing different players in different positions but nothing seems to be working. And their def is not even that shit but they cannot score, even though Salah, Mane and Jota are available. 
 

Never seen such meltdown before.

Klopp's assitant I cant remember his name, said months ago that he was the brain behind Klopp's success....bold rermark but still doesnt look that out of line with hindsight.

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I was bored...

chelsea 3-1 arsenal 1-1 spurs 0-3

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It's not the first time to be fair. 

The same happen to Klopp at Dormund. After a couple of seasons this same thing happened and it's happening all over again in a different team. 
I guess his methods are like Bielsa methods. They play so awesome but it's very demanding on the players that after a couple of seasons they are dead! 

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The Fiver

Unconscionably naff nonsense that has to stop

 

Egregious behaviour, earlier.
camera.png Egregious behaviour, earlier. Photograph: Jeff Holmes/PA

Scott Murray


ALL BACK TO POPE’S

It was a super Sunday for the Queen’s Celtic, as far as The Fiver can make out. Their latest dismal attempt to convert any, just one, of a bucketload of gilt-edged chances, this time at Dundee United, means they’ll be spared the ignominy of the Pope’s Newc O’Rangers securing the title and gambolling like giddy goats at Parkhead in a fortnight’s time. But if that wasn’t enough cause for celebration, Sunday’s result also rubber-stamped the club’s failure to erase the greatest team in the history of Scottish football from the record books by surpassing their nine in a row. Hats off to $tevie Mbe for ensuring that Jock Stein’s legends remain in the pantheon. A belated nod to Wim Jansen, too, come to think about it.

Obviously the club’s fans won’t be completely c0ck-a-hoop, given the unintended consequence of all this is party time at the Big House, which is now once again open for business. All back to Pope’s! But every cloud, and all that. And to be fair, O’Rangers’ 55th title, or their first if you’re one of those crashing bores, is some achievement, when you consider that while Celtic were making hay, the Light Blues were spending the best part of a decade failing to win Challenge Cup finals and losing at home to the likes of Annan Athletic. Truly this has been a comeback for the ages.

The sheer magnitude of their title win has inevitably found some supporters getting a wee bit carried away. Large numbers of galoots congregated outside Ibrox on Saturday, to hear the team all but secure the title by skelping St Mirren 3-0 and witness their manager hanging halfway out of a bog window. These buffoons turned up again on Sunday, and also crammed themselves into George Square in town, all the while raising concerns about the old pandemic, and giving first minister Nicola Sturgeon (“it’s infuriating and disgraceful”) the chance to grab some rare media attention.

All pretty bad, though most egregious of all was the plane commissioned by fans to fly over Tannadice trailing some trolling. This sort of unconscionably naff nonsense was also spotted on Sunday over the home of 2022-23 promotion challengers Liverpool, and it has to stop. To this end, The Fiver is launching a BAN BANNER [email protected] campaign, though as yet we can’t think of a good way to publicise it that doesn’t open us up to accusations of gross hypocrisy or undermine the credibility of our message.

LIVE ON BIG WEBSITE!

Join Scott Murray from 6pm for hot MBM coverage of Chelsea 2-1 Everton, before Michael Butler is on hand for West Ham 2-2 Leeds.

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“I hope one day we don’t have to have special days and every single day is International Women’s Day” – former England international Claire Rafferty talks about her role at Lewes FC, the club with equal investment in their women’s and men’s teams.

Tell ‘em, Claire.
camera.png Tell ‘em, Claire. Photograph: Lewes FC and Lyle & Scott/PA

FIVER LETTERS

“The Pope’s Newc O’Rangers and the Queen’s Celtic (Thursday’s Fiver)? Really? Are you trying to be funny or just thick? Why does every article you write have derogatory names for the Old Firm … sectarian bile. What a [snip – Fiver Bad Word Ed]. In what planet is the Pope associated with the Gers and the Queen of England with Celtic? Every article! Not funny. Sound like someone English trying and failing to be knowledgeable about Scottish sport. Patronising [snip – FBWE]. Give up!” – NE.

“Re: Friday’s Quote of the Day. Surely Steve Bruce’s past as a crime writer makes him the ideal person to find whoever has been leaking things to the media?” – Stuart Gillespie.

Send your letters to [email protected]. And you can always tweet The Fiver via @guardian_sport. Today’s winner of our letter o’the day is … NE Stuart Gillespie, who wins a copy of From the Jaws of Victory. We’ve more to give away [UK only, apologies – Fiver Postal Ed], and you can also enter promo code FIVER and get 15% off and free shipping.

NEWS, BITS AND BOBS

Jürgen Klopp isn’t having suggestions that his Mentality Mites weren’t as hungry for the win as Fulham as LLLLLLiverpool lost another home game. “Believe me these boys want to win,” he honked. “We still made mistakes and that’s the problem.”

Scott Parker fixing up a blazer on gilet. Remarkable.
camera.png Scott Parker fixing up a blazer on gilet. Remarkable. Photograph: Matt West/BPI/Rex/Shutterstock

Ole Gunnar Solskjær is glad his brave Manchester United boys put their bodies on the line during the 2-0 defeat of Manchester City. “We suffered a lot, the players worked their nuts off,” he grimaced. “The experience of having gone through that [can] help us of course [in future].”

Joan Laporta will begin a second stint as Barça bigwig after winning Big Vote. “Seeing Leo [Messi] go to vote, the best player in the world, voting with his son, for me, this shows … that Leo loves Barça, that we are all a big family,” cooed Laporta, impressively stroking two egos in one bit of chat.

West Ham vibes man Mark Noble, 78, is this close to inking his name on a one-year contract extension.

José Mourinho (Psy.D) reckons the work he has done on Gareth Bale’s mind has made him good at football again. “I found psychological scars,” he diagnosed. “There is a moment where that psychological barrier has to be broken. And he broke it.”

And Portugal’s national coaches’ union wants Sporting manager Rúben Amorim suspended for up to six years because he’s not qualified to be a head coach. Their top-of-the-table position suggests otherwise. Sporting described the situation as “one of the most regrettable and surreal episodes in the history of Portuguese football”.

STILL WANT MORE?

“It’s incomparable”: fans of the Pope’s Newc O’Rangers celebrate their league title, hail hail $tevie and are now #goingfor56. Ewan Murray reports.

When it comes to a battle of Manchester’s giants, Ole’s Big Red continues to have Big Blue’s number and that might spell future problems for Pep, posits floating brain in a jar Jonathan Wilson.

We can never be doing with trying to compare winning runs, anyway.
camera.png We can never be doing with trying to compare winning runs, anyway. Photograph: Laurence Griffiths/AFP/Getty Images

Anything Erling Haaland could do was bettered by Robert Lewandowski in Der Klassiker, as Andy Brassell reports.

So Solid Sid Lowe on 29 seconds of the Madrid derby.

Álvaro Morata once again answered Juventus’s call in providing a useful alternative to Cristiano Ronaldo, explains Nicky Bandini.

1-2-3-4-5-6-8-9-10 talking points from the weekend’s Premier League.

Manchester City kept up the pressure on Chelsea while Manchester United bounced back. Rachel Brown-Finnis delivers her verdict on the latest WSL matches.

Oh, and if it’s your thing … you can follow Big Website on Big Social FaceSpace. And INSTACHAT, TOO!

THEY TURNED IT DOWN. I REALISED IT WAS BECAUSE I HADN’T PUT ANY MURDERS IN

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Hmm, really close calls for 2 Leeds goals. Then a soft pen and WHU lead...

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West Ham are legitimately pretty good. Annoyingly... 😒

We need them to go away.

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11 minutes ago, Jason said:

West Ham's game in hand is against Arsenal next weekend.

Before that, West Ham go to Old Trafford this weekend. 

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2 minutes ago, Jason said:

Before that, West Ham go to Old Trafford this weekend. 

Let the crumble begin!

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Ornstein: Lamptey out for season, Mbappe not for City, Ritchie cleared locker, huddle rebels

https://theathletic.com/2432533/2021/03/08/ornstein-lamptey-out-for-season-mbappe-not-for-city-ritchie-cleared-locker-huddle-rebels/

Ornstein: Lamptey out for season, Mbappe not for City, Ritchie cleared  locker, huddle rebels – The Athletic

Brighton and Hove Albion have suffered a significant blow in their battle to avoid relegation from the Premier League after right wing-back Tariq Lamptey was ruled out for the remainder of this season following surgery over the weekend to repair a hamstring injury, The Athletic can reveal.

The 20-year-old England youth international has been sidelined with the problem since the middle of December and underwent an operation in London on Saturday to fix a tear to the tendon.

It is thought the procedure was successful and should enable Lamptey to resume training before the campaign is over, however he will not be fit in time to feature in Brighton’s final 11 fixtures.

Lamptey has played a key role since joining Graham Potter’s side from Chelsea in early 2020 and recently signed a new long-term contract to keep him at the club until the summer of 2025.

But he was forced off in the second half of a 0-0 draw at Fulham before Christmas and Brighton head coach Potter last week expressed concern that Lamptey could miss the run-in.

Although Brighton had been coping reasonably well in his absence, they have now lost three consecutive games and are separated from the drop zone by only goal difference.

It is also a setback for England Under-21s manager Aidy Boothroyd ahead of the Euros, which begin with a group stage later this month before the knockout phase is held in May and June.


Mbappe wages mean move to Manchester City unlikely but Haaland an option

Manchester City’s inability to break down neighbours Manchester United in yesterday’s 2-0 home defeat underlined why they are looking to sign a top striker in the transfer window this summer.

They are among a small group of clubs in contention to recruit the prolific Borussia Dortmund front man Erling Haaland and The Athletic reported last month that high-scoring Inter Milan forward Romelu Lukaku is also a candidate being considered by the Premier League leaders.

City will naturally have other options. For example, there is a long-standing interest in Harry Kane but the price it might take for Tottenham to even contemplate letting him go has deterred suitors in the past and Spurs chairman Daniel Levy would be reluctant to strengthen a domestic rival.

One elite player who it is understood City are not actively pursuing, though, is Kylian Mbappe. The Paris Saint-Germain attacker is approaching the final year of his contract in the French capital and has yet to commit to a new deal, which has led to him being linked with many of the top sides.

GettyImages-1231559434.jpg
 
Mbappe’s wages mean he is not a realistic option for Manchester City (Photo: Fred Tanneau/AFP via Getty Images)

But it is well known in the game that Mbappe’s salary expectations are extremely high and despite spending heavily on transfers under Sheikh Mansour’s ownership, City are unwilling to break their wage structure and risk causing damage to the harmony inside Pep Guardiola’s dressing room.

This is thought to be a factor affecting City’s attempts to extend the contract of Kevin De Bruyne, whose current terms expire in 2023 and so far there has been no breakthrough in negotiations.

It tallies with what the club’s chief football operations manager Omar Berrada told The Athletic last October, the executive talking of City wanting to run a “financially sustainable” operation.

The level of wages Mbappe is said to be seeking — around the same figure Neymar is set to earn from his next deal with PSG, which is close to being agreed — will be hard for any team to fund in addition to a transfer fee. It may be more realistic if he leaves as a free agent in 2022 but the Ligue 1 champions will be determined to avoid one of football’s biggest stars walking away for nothing.

Haaland would be more affordable in that sense and while his potential transfer fee would be massive in the upcoming market, the likes of City, Chelsea, Manchester United, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and Barcelona have all been linked with the 20-year-old Norway international.

It has been noted that City’s pursuit could be complicated by the involvement of agent Mino Raiola, with whom they have a chequered history, but Haaland’s main representative is believed to be his father Alf-Inge, a former City player, and that is therefore unlikely to present a major issue.


Players in England show support for Rangers by not taking part in huddles

The rivalry between Rangers and Celtic swung in favour of the blue side of Glasgow at the weekend, with Steven Gerrard’s side clinching the Scottish Premiership title for the first time in 10 years.

The traditional gestures for title-winners tend not to apply to these two sides. Celtic, for example, can point to Rangers refusing to give them a guard of honour in May 2019 when it comes to what they would be willing to do ahead of the game between the sides in two weeks.

GettyImages-1231550067.jpg
 
Fleck stands as Sheffield United huddle (Photo: Laurence Griffiths/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

But it is not just north of the border that the rivalry leads to unlikely gestures — or the refusal to do them. The pre-match huddle has been traditional at Celtic since the 1990s when Tony Mowbray introduced it to demonstrate togetherness. It is heavily associated with the Parkhead club.

That is not the case in England, where a number of teams have a huddle pre-match. Eagle-eyed watchers of the game, though, have spotted a number of players in England avoiding the huddle due to their Rangers links.

John Fleck and Oli McBurnie of Sheffield United both stand rather than bending down to join their team-mates in the huddle ahead of every game. Fleck came through Rangers’ academy, while McBurnie grew up supporting them.

GettyImages-1231264638.jpg
 
Edmundson, on loan from Rangers, stands for Derby (Photo: Adam Davy/PA Images via Getty Images)

In the Championship, Derby’s George Edmundson — on loan from Rangers — also stands for his side’s huddle because of his connection. With the rivalry as strong as ever, do not expect a change in this huddle muddle any time soon.


Ritchie cleared out Newcastle locker and said goodbye in January

A miserable week for Newcastle United ended with a drab 0-0 draw against West Brom and there was no chance for Matt Ritchie — the player at the centre of their latest controversy — to make headlines for the right reasons after being left as an unused substitute at The Hawthorns.

Even before Ritchie’s training ground altercation with manager Steve Bruce, the 31-year-old’s Magpies future had been uncertain amid Bournemouth’s well-documented attempts to bring their former player back to Dean Court, both last summer and during the most recent transfer window.

GettyImages-1303369810.jpg
 
Ritchie was involved in a bust-up with Steve Bruce (Photo: Serena Taylor/Newcastle United via Getty Images)

Despite extending his contract at St James’s Park last March, Ritchie was keen on returning to the south coast — it is where he is from and retains a family home — and The Athletic has learnt that in January, the winger had even emptied his locker and bid farewell to team-mates and staff.

That was how convinced the Scotland international was about the move going through but, after initially being given the green light by Bruce, it was ultimately blocked because Newcastle could not secure a replacement and were unwilling to accept the terms put forward by Bournemouth.

Newcastle’s preference was for Ritchie to depart permanently or on loan with an obligation to buy, whereas the Cherries are thought to have favoured a loan that would turn permanent if they were promoted. That left scope for Ritchie to rejoin his parent club, which would not have suited them.


England expect to call up Trippier and Bellingham despite COVID-19 restrictions

There are currently no travel concerns for England’s overseas players ahead of the March international break, The Athletic understands.

At present, England are confident Kieran Trippier and Jude Bellingham will be able to join up with them later this month, despite restrictions in certain countries about travel during the pandemic. Fitness permitting, Trippier is set for a recall to Gareth Southgate’s squad and Bellingham will be selected for the senior side or England under-21s.

Any issue would not concern arriving at the England camp but with returning to their clubs. The FA believes that Bellingham’s side Borussia Dortmund, for example, have a regionally-arranged elite sporting exemption in place that would aid this process.

While the situation could change if conditions worsen, as it stands, the FA hopes Trippier and Bellingham should be fine to be part of the set-up. The same rules would have applied to Bellingham’s Dortmund team-mate Jadon Sancho, who is expected to miss England’s upcoming World Cup qualifiers against San Marino, Poland and Austria with a muscle injury.

Trippier’s inclusion is anticipated following the expiry of his ban relating to a betting charge.

He was back in the Atletico Madrid line-up for their 1-1 draw with Real Madrid on Sunday after serving a 10-week punishment. The suspension never stood in the way of his England participation because of its timing.

Manager Gareth Southgate likes the 30-year-old, has played him at both right-back and left-back, and also named him as captain for a friendly against Wales last October. It would be a surprise if he were not named in the upcoming squad for the 2022 World Cup qualifiers and he has four games for Atletico to prove he’s ready before England get together on March 22.

Despite the case being brought by The FA, it has not affected the regard in which he is held within the England squad.


Clubs worry international games could lead to Champions League restrictions

The international break presents a headache for Premier League sides as players leave their usual bubbles for the first time this year — and clubs will have a chance to raise their concerns at a meeting on Friday with top-flight bosses and the Football Association.

There is particular worry among those teams competing in the Champions League and Europa League that some squad members may have to miss quarter-final first-leg ties depending on where they have travelled overseas.

Like England, each country around the world currently has its own COVID-19 related entry rules and with only a short turnaround between the final international fixtures on March 31 and European club matches on April 6, 7 and 8, there are fears that certain players might have to be left out of away trips.

GettyImages-1229708427.jpg
 
The upcoming international fixtures are causing concern for some clubs (Photo: Carl Recine – Pool/Getty Images)

The situation has been made more manageable by the suspension of upcoming World Cup qualifiers in South America but UEFA is not planning to follow suit because there are no alternative dates in the calendar to play these games.

The English authorities will seek to offer Premier League teams as much clarity as possible at Friday’s meeting, which takes the form of a question and answer session involving club secretaries and operations staff.

Some teams are thought to be frustrated at the FA and FIFA over a perceived lack of communication on the issue. However, sources believe FIFA may consider showing leniency to those who refuse mandatory call-ups for this international break. 

That said, the world governing body is also aware that there are many players who are keen to play for their national teams and want to ensure these wishes are respected.

FIFA’s view is believed to be that while health is of primary concern, it also has a responsibility to support the decisions players make.


Clubs ask for Premier League season to be pushed back

Premier League clubs are pushing for a later start date next season. Initial plans would see the 2021-22 campaign begin on the same date as the EFL, on August 7.

Premier League clubs, concerned about the quick turnaround, prefer August 14. The current season doesn’t finish until May 23. Many clubs have players involved with their countries in the rescheduled 2020 European Championships, starting on June 11 and ending on July 11.

An executive of one club tells The Athletic: “People will say the players had three months off last season during the (COVID-19) lockdown but that was cancelled out by a very short summer and intense programme this season. The schedule for the last two years, for reasons out of everyone’s control, has been relentless.”

The lack of clarity over the start date is a further complication for clubs trying to arrange their pre-seasons. It is already proving difficult to plan camps abroad, due to the unpredictability of government travel regulations.


Former Fulham man Kline fined £25,000 for incorrect allegations

Craig Kline, formerly Fulham’s assistant director of football, was in the news last week after being sued by Martin Glenn, the Football Association’s former chief executive, for libel and harassment, explains Daniel Taylor.

Glenn was awarded £100,000 damages after being the victim of what the judge described as a “long series of publications”, mainly Twitter posts, that accused him of corruption and covering up child sexual abuse.

The Athletic’s information is that Fulham have also taken legal action against Kline, an American data expert, after he made a number of other damaging allegations, having left Craven Cottage in acrimonious circumstances towards the end of 2017.

Similar to the Glenn case, Kline’s online allegations led to an FA investigation that found no wrongdoing. And again, it did not end well for Kline. Fulham felt strongly enough to take him to court relating to 49 breaches — 42 admitted, seven proven — of an earlier ruling forbidding him to make “any derogatory or critical comments or statements” about the club. Kline, now understood to be living in Gibraltar, was ordered to pay £25,000 for contempt of court.


Derby want EFL to speak out about knee

Derby County decided to stop taking a knee for the rest of the season after a meeting was held between senior staff and players, explains Ryan Conway.

The Athletic revealed that the club and players felt that the message was being lost and they could do more behind the scenes to combat racism in light of abuse aimed at some of their players. Some senior Derby figures also felt some teams were being too casual with taking a knee, with subs from opposing teams still warming up when the protest was happening.

They also want the EFL to give more clarity and guidance over the summer with perhaps a press conference in which they answer questions about their stance on it and other issues around racism in the game.

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The Fiver

European football's dirty protest in administrative form

 

The stars are aligning for Big Cup nonsense.
camera.png The stars are aligning for Big Cup nonsense. Photograph: Estela Silva/EPA

Scott Murray


EUROPEAN HUSTLE

It’s long been established that football fans can’t have nice things. Not allowed. Take our league, which used to have logical divisions like First, Second, Third and Fourth, but now makes even less sense than a marketing executive seven hours into an evening on the chop. Clubs like Ipswich, Watford, Southampton and QPR could launch genuine title challenges and nobody would bat an eyelid. Every season was a different world, played on fresh terrain. Now the same clique dine at the top table year in, year out, to the point that a poor title defence, pretty much par for the course back in the day, becomes a jaw-dropping break from the norm, a strange object of wonder to be mocked by a generation of compliant rubes.

The Man jiggered Big Cup as well, of course. There’s a competition that could be won by Steaua Bucharest, Red Star Belgrade, Nottingham Forest or the Queen’s Celtic, but now is a similarly repetitive grind featuring the usual suspects, a firm that even petroclubs struggle to break into. You’d think The Man would be satisfied with his work, but it’s never enough for these people, and now it looks like plans to double-bloat Big Cup are in the pipeline and set to spray across the continent before the end of the month, a dirty protest in administrative form.

The idea is the brainchild of Edwin van der Sar, chief suit of Ajax, a club that once melded seemingly incompatible concepts of collective responsibility and individualism to create something beautiful, but are now doing this. Across countries where Johan Cruyff once glided with balletic grace, his descendants clod-hop in dirty boots. The scheme, submitted under the auspices of the European Club Association, will see the group stage of Big Cup become a convoluted 36-club mega-league that necessitates each team playing 10 games against opponents decided by wildcards and coefficients, and there may be the need for some two-legged play-offs as well. All this before Christmas.

It’s a work of no little genius, because the more you read it back, the less sense it makes every time. The motivation for this preposterous hustle is to end talk of a European Super League, another thing nobody has ever asked for, Uefa general secretary Giorgio Marchetti bloviating: “Unity can be lost when insidious ideas are pursued under the pretence of survival, growth and business needs.” All this will have the knock-on effect of further damaging the domestic leagues, required to shrink to make room for the extra fixtures, and may also feature “a double-path transfer system” where clubs can’t buy each other’s players depending on which tier they’ve been allocated. The grift is on, people, though we’ve known that for decades.

LIVE ON BIG WEBSITE!

Join Scott Murray from 8pm for hot MBM coverage of Juventus 2-0 Porto (agg: 3-2) in Big Cup, while Simon Burnton will be on hand for Dortmund 2-1 Sevilla (agg: 5-3).

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“We will score 18 – 18-0, this will be the result. What a question! [Southampton conceded] nine when they played 88 minutes 10 against 11. Do you think this is a joke? We are going to score nine goals or 18? Be serious. We are just trying to win the game” – Pep Guardiola reaches peak exasperation after being asked if he expects a goal-fest against Southampton.

RECOMMENDED LOOKING

It’s David Squires on … Mole! Steve Bruce’s hunt for the Newcastle leaker. Yeah, it’s good.

Steve Bruce investigates.
camera.png Steve Bruce investigates. Illustration: David Squires/The Guardian

RECOMMENDED LISTENING

It’s Max Rushden and the pod squad with a look back at the Madrid derby, Der Klassiker and what next for Barça now they have a new but not new chief suit.

FIVER LETTERS

“Re: yesterday’s Fiver letter from ‘NE’ bemoaning The Fiver flogging an unfunny joke beyond death. I can only assume they are a recent subscriber. Some of us have been waiting more than 20 years for some punchlines” – Darren Leathley (and 1,056 others).

“The nice thing is that the letter shows you are inexplicably managing to attract new readers. Through some malady of low self-esteem, I have been reading since the beginning, but I appreciate the kids are the future, etc and so on” – Tom Schumacher.

“José Mourinho (Psy.D) reckons the work he has done on Gareth Bale’s mind has made him good at football again (yesterday’s News, Bits and Bobs). Mourinho is clearly a follower of Seligman’s learned helplessness model, itself the inspiration for black ops interrogation and ‘persuasion’ techniques. ‘Yes, yes we break the psychological barrier!’” – Paul S Benveniste, Ph.D.

“While it’s great to see you launching a ‘BAN BANNER [email protected]’ campaign (yesterday’s Fiver), may I respectfully ask that you begin in earnest after this weekend’s fixtures. The reason is I’m planning to honour my favourite Sheffield Wednesday player with an airborne message over Hillsborough on Sunday and I really wouldn’t want you to BAN BARRY BANNAN BANNER [email protected]” – Tony Crawford.

Send your letters to [email protected]. And you can always tweet The Fiver via @guardian_sport. Today’s winner of our letter o’the day is … Tony Crawford, who wins a copy of From the Jaws of Victory. We’ve one more to give away [UK only, apologies – Fiver Postal Ed], and you can also enter promo code FIVER and get 15% off and free shipping.

NEWS, BITS AND BOBS

Germany will have to find a new boss who wears a roll-neck jumper as well as Jogi Löw does, after the floppy-haired 61-year-old announced he will take his catalogue stylings elsewhere after Euro Not 2020. ”I take this step very consciously, full of pride and enormous gratitude,” he sniffed after 15 years in the job.

Even bringing big looks to a pandemic.
camera.png Even bringing big looks to a pandemic. Photograph: Ronald Wittek/EPA

Interim England manager Hege Riise is to be named as head coach of Team GB this week for Big Sports Day in Tokyo.

Neymar’s lingering thigh-knack has ruled him out of PSG’s 4-0 Big Cup defeat (agg: 4-5) by Barcelona on Wednesday.

An Oldham fans’ group have accused the owners of “destroying the legacy” of the club after Harry Kewell became the seventh manager to be sacked since the 2018 takeover. Keith Curle has replaced Kewell in the ejector seat.

Aberdeen have mutually consented Derek McInnes through the door marked Do One after eight years at Pittodrie.

Chelsea boss Tommy T is chuffed with Kai Havertz’s ghostly qualities as a false nine, having spooked Everton throughout their 2-0 win. “He showed up between the lines and used his potential to accelerate,” cooed Tommy. “Today he was excellent.”

And was David Moyes happy with Big Cup-chasing West Ham’s 2-0 win over Leeds? “The players are really disappointed with how they played,” he sighed. “We didn’t reach the standard we’ve set this season.”

STILL WANT MORE?

Is Wayne Rooney made to measure as a manager? Jamie Jackson speaks to Sven-Göran Eriksson and others to find out if the Derby boss will go the distance.

Boyhood coaching fan Robbie Keane on his desire to be a top, top coach.

Robbie Keane
camera.png Your Robbie Keane composite. Composite: Getty Images; Sportsfile via Getty Images; Reuters

Tommy T’s transformation of Chelsea is rooted in a rejigged defence, reckons Jacob Steinberg.

Leipzig’s rampant full-back Angeliño gets his chat on with Jonathan Liew.

Oh, and if it’s your thing … you can follow Big Website on Big Social FaceSpace. And INSTACHAT, TOO!

HULK SHRUG!

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3 minutes ago, Vesper said:

Woodward is still a loser cunt, just like Ole at the wheel

I wouldnt mind if they both stayed at that cesspool of a club

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Pep cant fuck off soon enough, sick of them and their corrupt shady shit they have pulled off, yet the media cant wait to wank everytime they are mentioned.

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17 minutes ago, Atomiswave said:

Pep cant fuck off soon enough, sick of them and their corrupt shady shit they have pulled off, yet the media cant wait to wank everytime they are mentioned.

other than that dodgy shit with CAS, I have no issues with City

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