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17 Aug 2014 21:49:03
" I was hot-headed and I'm sorry. I'll be back with the rest of the [Sporting] squad tomorrow."

Rojo Quote on Sporting TV. (The interview was about 90 seconds long.)





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11 Jan 2015 11:18:41
Does anyone have any information on Vertonghen?

Champions league level, - excels as a ball playing defender?

- In other words, good enough to make our first team, and perfectly suited to Van Gaal's system.

In the present market, and this being Spurs last chance for 20 or so million, surely this one is a no-brainer for both teams?

Spurs are lucky - we are probably desperate enough to pay anything up to £25 million (max.) - We are lucky, there is at least something available!

Get cracking EWW!


{Ed002's Note - Manchester United has no interest in him.}



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06 Jan 2015 19:47:11
I was against signing Hummels in the previous window, and looking a few years into the future, there are still good reasons an "all round" cb like Benatia may have been a better option. If we were among Europe's elite, that slight weakness. - A slow cb, a 3 man defence, a high line. It may have proved enough to separate us from the Bayern's or Real's.

That's all wishful thinking at this point however.

6 months on, the reality is Hummels is "a must." LVG has done well to create a resolute mentality, but it doesn't substitute or erase the threat, continuing, "terrible performances" are providing us with.

Form and results are a good thing, but they can collapse easily when 11 players are unable to get out of first gear.
For me the problem starts with the defence, continues with the defence, and ends with it too. We are a little on the slow side in attack, true, but if you watch games, pay attention to inability of the defence to move the ball into midfield. The worst culprit is Evans, closely followed by Smalling. I guarantee you by the time the ball reaches the midfield, the opposition have had time to recover their shape, and have a cup of tea in the process. - Every f**ing time! Its driving me a little mad to be honest.
This is all partly down to the new style of course. i'm not against the whole Barcelona passing system, but the reality is, if your going down that route, make sure you have the players to do it. It all makes sense now why we went for Vermalen (eventually signed by Barcelona, ) and why the one defender we did manage to sign was Marcos Rojo, another passing defender.
The point is, LVG has not been equipped to play his game properly. that's partly his fault. He could of got someone in at the back, on the cheap. Anyone really, so long as they could do possession control. Its also partly Woodwards and the owners fault, for not thinking it was an urgent priority to replace 2 legendary centrebacks departing in the same season, especially with a sudden switch to 3 cb's.
I just hope they don't slow play it this window. Spend next seasons budget if you must, I really don't care, just make sure that you don't leave a half working machine come the 1st of feb.




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It seems obvious the fee's quoted in the press are suspect, but Monaco could have obviously got around £40m for Falcao at 28 in the current transfer environment. (Provided injuries have not put teams off.)

How the loan deal makes any sense for Monaco I don't know. From their perspective, it would have made sense to create an obligation to purchase next year, like Valencia's Negrado deal. Falcao's transfer value will surely depreciate by 30-50% come next year.

Sneijder was a similar story. At 27 he was worth £40m, age 28 - £26m. By the time he joined Galatasaray at 29 he was worth as little as £12 odd million. Its debatable whether Sneijder was worth £40m to begin with, but there's no doubt a players value depreciates quickly once they pass 27 years old.




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Hi Eds, its not easy to understand the terms of the Falcao loan deal. The option to buy for £50m next year dosent make any financial sense for a 29 year old. Surely EdWW will turn round and spend £50m elsewhere? I hope that's not the case, because i'd rather support the player properly in the next 4-5 years.

Have Monaco gone to any lengths to protect themselves from Falcao's depreciation over the next year? The £6m loan fee and £25million -( rvp's price at 29) next year is £30m.
£10m less than the ~£40m they can still demand at 28 years of age.


{Ed002's Note - I am not going to get in to the finances and someone has been misleading you with these numbers.}



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Im not in favour of this move really. It would be upsetting to see him turn into a genuine Arsenal star, in the 30%~ish chance he does become world class.

We should have sold him to Everton, Tottenham or QPR/Newcastle.





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For those that haven't seen it, Jamie Carragher's reaction to Falcao's signature is recommended viewing. He was already starting to quiet down from his usual chatter when we signed Di Maria, but the Falcao deal going through on DD was the first time iv seen him more or less speechless.




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Cleverly's departure is good for both player and club. Wellbeck was an unnecessary sale.

Despite playing in 2 competitions this season, Wellbeck could have been loaned, and simply come back next year as a squad player. 4 Strikers are required to challenge for 4 competitions. Why axe a player that needs replacing next year?

Im in favour of refurbishing the side with expensive world class players, but I don't agree with the idea that there is no value to bringing youth through.
There is a definate edge to producing your own world class players. Loyalty and mentality are benefits, but most importantly, their knowledge of the system is a great asset.
The best example has to be Barcelona. The trio of Xavi, Iniesta and Messi bettered Madrid for years. The key difference being their ability to perform in unison, producing telepathic football on occasion. The sum of Barcelona was greater than its parts. Not so for Madrid.

For United, a youth policy is not a realistic strategy.

Looking at football clubs capable of producing great "youth generations, " i'm not filled with confidence at the prospect of bidding our time. Shappy mentioned Ajax and Barcelona's youth teams produced the best young talent, a dn that it is the education lacking. I have to question that. To my memory, following football from the early 90's, the 2008-13 Barcelona side is the only youth "golden generation" they have produced in their history. Before the 90's they won 3 titles in 30 years in what was a bad period for them, bar the years of Johan Cruff in the late 70's.

As for Ajax, they have had 2 "golden generations." One in the mid 90's, and one in the early 70's with Cruff and Neeksens, - and 3 European cups!
United have had 3 in their history. One in the 50's, tragically lost in Munich, one in the 60's, and one of course in 92'.

When you look at it like that, the best ratio of youth "golden generartions" appears to be United's 3, over a 65 year period. that's 1 every 20 years if your lucky.

The only point at which youth should come through then - is when it does. If you have the problem of selling the first team after that, then do so. Until that time invest.

(Ferguson did exactly that. Barca did exactly that.
United spent lavishly in the late 80's to produce the 93' title winning side. In 95 we sold the first team and put the youth in. The same is true of Barcelona, mid 2000's. Ronaldinho & co out, Iniesta + Messi in, to partner Xavi.)

Much happier to let Woodward, and I don't believe i'm saying it, the Glazers run the club. Phelan, Parker, Ferguson, Chalton & co, as much as the idea griefs me to say it, you will stop United evolving, - in a period where only that will guarantee survival. We can all see we dangerous road United were going down, overconfidence in youth, overconfidence in David Moyes. i'm shocked to be saying it, but i'm grateful the owners and EdWW stepped in to sort the problem out.




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It would be sad to see United go 100% in the direction of Man City/PSG's/Madrid's. The sides that make non stop purchases strip themselves of personality.

The sale of Di Maria is a good example. He was a memorable part of Real's side that halted the legendary Barca 09-11 team, (an acheivment not dissimilar to our United side that broke the "invincible" Arsenal of 2004, something we still enjoy 10 years later.) He was also the star in the side that captured the "decima" (10th European Cup.) These significant moments give teams a history and identity. A revolving door policy can devalue that. There has to be a balance.

Im in favour of some kind of transformation at United. We have been the most old fashioned side in Europe for some time curtosy of a long serving manager. It was worth it, - in Ferguson we had one of the greatest managers to grace the game. Now is a new era however, and I think we really need to use last season as a learning experience. We stuck to the tried and tested, appointing DM, but in reality, it was never the "old fashioned values" that made Sir Alex a legend, it was his natural abundance of ability. In David Moyes we found a successor in personality, - but not ability.

Outdated ways of operating do need to change at United. i'm sorry to say it, but in one of those departments is Youth Policy. The Premier League and Champions League have changed. Level of competition, financial stakes. "Small risks" are now "big risks." For a title challenging team to give Cleverly 18months of first team football, is a big risk. The poor guy received a lot of harsh criticism in the end that he didn't need trying to make his way in the game, but if you want to develop youth in a tier 1 football club nowadays, that will be the fate of 1 in 2 players. Look at Arsenal, are they bring through Youth, or are they signing Sanchez's, Ozils and Carzola's? Their Policy is changing too because it has to change.

A buying policy for a team like United has to be the way forward. When we do unearth talents the likes of Januzaj, a future path for them should be set out clearly. In addition a player that can do a job such as Wellbeck (who can give you something different - the "defensive" a.midfield role he played in the WC, ) should be retained to deepen the squad. That would keep the balance & allow United to reshape itself in the 21st century team.




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With all this attacking talent, I think one of those midfield spots may be handed to Rooney or Di Maria. there's only room for one Deeper MF if that is the case. We have that man already - Herrera!

We might even see the manager go to 2 centre backs instead of three, in which case we are not quite as bad off depending how good Rojo turns out to be.

Jones/Rojo CB pairing. Iv been imressed with Jones so far this season. At 22 he isn't as much a risk as Smalling, who is in danger of going off the boil at 24.

24 seems to be a dangerous age for United "prospects." Some like Flectcher overcame that barrier. Others like Nani, Cleverly, Anderson etc. have come unstuck around that period.

Although his growth has not been rapid by any means, Jones may be clear of his teething period by the time he reaches 24. If he is it will be a bonus to both the player and United.




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Is his name Barry Vidal?

A more serious note, Vidal was subbed in the 86th minute.

He came off waving at the Juventus faithful. It could be some love for Juve fans after months of turbulent rumours. Until 12.01 tomorrow however that wave means anything. Why the sub, why a potential farewell, and where will Daley Blind play?