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Cast-iron uncertainties

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Robbo Robson | 06:30 UK time, Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Is it the first international break already?

The first international fracture is Luka Modric, I suppose. Can't say we'll miss him at Wembley a week Wednesday of course.

With a pause in the action it's the perfect time to draw way too many conclusions from way too few matches and I'm just the man. So let's test some early assumptions...

1. Chelsea will win the Premier League title.
anelka_drogbaPA595335.jpgNicolas Anelka and Didier Drogba getting on famously

TRUE. They don't look like losing and they can thank Hiddink (not Ancelotti) for getting the Stroppy Sisters Didi and Nicki dovetailing upfront when this time last year they were giving each other the dirtiest looks since Pat Butcher and Peggy Mitchell last got trolleyed together.

2. Manchester United will miss Ronaldo.

TRUE. So far they've had Valencia in his stead and... well you know when you're dumped by a cracking looking lass and your best mate Colin (plump and good at pub quizzes) takes you down the boozer to cheer you up and all you can do is look at this well-meaning lummox that lass's face just comes into greater focus and all you can hear Jim Bowen in your head yelling 'Here's what you could've won!'? That's Valencia at United.

Nani was never a decent replacement. The goalscoring cartwheel is special, but given what else the lad contributes you'd be just as well finding an actual cartwheel to play right wing. Rooney's started like a bull at a gate - when they show him tumbling in slo-mo the lad looks ever more like a Ray Harryhausen animation that Sinbad might have to battle against. Top player, mind, but without the Tumbling Ego's ability to shred feeble teams, United will struggle - a bit.

3. Arsenal aren't strong/old/good enough.

FALSE. They looked top notch at OT. United had the usual quota of pens not given to the opposition. Short of running over Arshavin in a combine harvester I'm not sure what else Darren Fletcher could've done to guarantee the Gunners a penalty. United did nowt but Wenger's team did the equivalent of a middle-order batting collapse in the second half. Almunia must have the same rush of blood to the head when he goes to his barber's and the Fred Flintstone defending of Yabu-Diaby-Doo was just ridiculous.

Arsenal could go great guns this season if they stop handing out gifts in hamper-sized chunks to their nearest rivals.
wenger_standsAP595335.jpgArsene Wenger struggles to find a seat in the South Stand

I thought Wenger did mightily well to keep his cool after being sent to the stand, mind. Other managers be warned: no kicking of plastic bottles, no flicking of laggy bands, no spud guns, no paper aeroplanes or you go and sit in the corner with a bin on your head. Whaddya mean where? Over there with them Scots lads who are flicking the Vs, that's where.

4. Liverpool have their best chance in a long time of lifting the Premier League.

FALSE. They don't. They can't rely on friendly sending-offs and late pushes to nick wins this season. If Wenger was restrained then Sean Davis was positively angelic in not grabbing the hollow talent vacuum that is Lucas Leiva by his throat and shaking him like a rag-doll after his prolonged conversation with Alan Wiley. And if I was Steven Gerrard I'd be wondering where Benitez finds the gall to suggest I need to up me game to get the team winning again. If it wasn't for Gerrard, Benitez would've been out of a job long ago. It's like an Archbishop blaming Jesus for the state of Christianity.

Still the point is - and it has been this for at least two seasons - no Stevie and no Nando makes 'Pool a dull boy. And Rafa's not bought a damn thing that's going to make any difference. Johnson's done ok but a decent full-back won't win you the title.

5. Man City need time to bed in.

FALSE, dammit! Well I thought they'd struggle to get it together but there's a Mourinho- like miserliness to them already. Lescott's arrived 'to take on a fresh challenge' (I expect that's what he said - anyone who gets to be on a six-figure a week wage always does. I expect the biggest challenge is to keep putting the phone down on financial advisers and selecting your investment portfolio wisely in these trying fiscal times). lescott_shirtGetty595335.jpg
Joleon Lescott contemplates the challenge at City

Adebayor says he feels 'loved' - bless! - as long as he doesn't tell everyone that he's off to Barca that might remain the case. The team look solid enough and Hughes could surprise a few of us and still be in the job by January.

6. Spurs will make the top four.

TRUE-ish. My prediction and I'm sticking to it if they can get in another centre-half. Capello's called up Lennon as he looks like the best very fast headless chicken we have available at right-wing although Shaun Wright-Phillips is an identical footballer. Harry's got more variety upfront than a Victorian Music Hall - although Modric's injury is going to be a tough one to overcome. Still I can just about see it happening.

7. The Big One. Will Boro bounce back?

NOT SAYING! Gary Johnson described us at the best team in the Championship. Aw shucks. You're bound to beat us then. I think we will go up but not if all teams have to do is a hopeful hump down over our centre-backs and you're in on goal. The Megsonian approach to forward planning. Does us every time.

Still it's been a bright enough start to the Premier League, I reckon. Here's the Blue Bell team of the first few weeks (with creditable mentions for Palacios, Defoe and Drogba of course but I had to bench them or you'd all be thinking I've been having some sort of London love-in).

Jensen (Burnley), Johnson (Liverpool), A.Cole (Chelsea), Vermaelen (Arsenal), Upson (West Ham), Lennon (Tottenham), Modric (Tottenham), Barry (Manchester City), Arshavin (Arsenal), Rooney (Manchester United), Adebayor (Man City).

Comments

  • 1. At 07:26am on 01 Sep 2009, Friendlycard wrote:

    Brilliant, Robbo, and bang on the money, I'd say. Sadly, though, I can't see Boro going up - I think the Blades, Cardiff and....er, sorry......Newcastle will prove just that bit too strong.......

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  • 2. At 07:29am on 01 Sep 2009, BeyondThePale wrote:

    Is this still going?
    Amazing.

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  • 3. At 07:30am on 01 Sep 2009, richjseymour wrote:

    by 'eck robbo... you're up early today, you wet the bed or summat?

    great blog, as always

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  • 4. At 07:33am on 01 Sep 2009, Ramilas1 wrote:

    As you said, Robbo, "..... it's the perfect time to draw way too many conclusions from way too few matches ..... " but at least it was mildly humorous.

    Will definitely pop back later to read all the ranting from the usual suspects. They should just steer clear of you, and keep on the medication, since they've had their own sense of humour by-pass operations.

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  • 5. At 07:41am on 01 Sep 2009, WonderboySA wrote:

    "no Stevie and no Nando makes 'Pool a dull boy"Best quote you've ever written...by far...masterclass.

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  • 6. At 07:44am on 01 Sep 2009, Matikilile wrote:

    Hey Robbo

    Thanks for Backing Chelsea in our Pursuit to win the PL.

    Do you think Man Untd is on their way to be the next Chelsea in the 2008/2009 season.. in the Scolari era ??

    on their way. . . .

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  • 7. At 07:47am on 01 Sep 2009, Spitfire wrote:

    Thrashing the below average, the average and the above average with ease, unless it gets real hot out there, are Arsenal becoming to football what South Africa is to cricket?

    So if not them, who of the Big Four will not be there come 10/11?

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  • 8. At 07:54am on 01 Sep 2009, BoleynGUY wrote:

    Greatarticle Robo ....like em'all and look forward to readingyouallthe time, i wasjudt wondering your Missus lets you watch the U.S Open what with the time difference and all..anyways theresthis lassie goes by th enameof Azarinka me thinks hwo every one thinks has an outside chance to nick the title...........I you mentioned spurs making the top four but didnt say naything about anyone else being adark horse.........now my team Westham could do it you know if Zola and the lads stick to thier onions

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  • 9. At 08:08am on 01 Sep 2009, Faustino wrote:

    #8 - probably garlic for Gianfranco.

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  • 10. At 08:11am on 01 Sep 2009, highpeakblue wrote:

    Wat abart villa everton and maybe fulham or the hammers?

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  • 11. At 08:24am on 01 Sep 2009, doorgunner wrote:

    Robbo, Love ur work.
    Finally a post that actually calls the Man U v Arsenal game as it was. Its nice to see an unbiased report. The combine harvester crack was superb.
    Its the first time I've been able to smile since Saturday.
    Keep it up mate, as an Aussie Arsenal fan we need a chance to smile now and again.

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  • 12. At 08:32am on 01 Sep 2009, BigGameBendtner- 5 more to go til B52 gets 50 wrote:

    No Gallas in your team? he has been streets ahead of Vermaelen.. who also has been fantastic

    I'm still trying to work out how we lost on Saturday :(

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  • 13. At 08:50am on 01 Sep 2009, SugarDunkerton wrote:

    #10

    Villa and Everton have taken backward steps this year in my opinion... I don't think O'Neill has addressed what he needs..

    Moyes spent too long with the Lescott affair making his point when he could've been spending the money from the transfer..

    Hope Harry keeps big Tom Huddlestone in the team.. love watching that guy play football.

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  • 14. At 08:51am on 01 Sep 2009, Cread84 wrote:

    How many times does fergie have to be written off before people realise he is a great manager, and realise he can take this current group of players to the title. United were not totally outclassed by arsenal on saturday, arsenal played better. The arshavin penalty was a wrong call by the ref, but he did score straight after it, which he wouldn't have had the opportunity to do had the penalty been given. So this can't be given as a reason why arsenal should have won. And if you have a player in you're team that thinks bullet headers into their own goal is the right thing to do, then thats a fault in the arsenal team. So you must have deserved to lose, football is about goals, not about passing the ball well, and looking good. You have to play without to many mistakes, something your team didn't do. Rash goalkeeping, and defensive decisions cost you the game in the end. No fluke or poor refereeing

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  • 15. At 08:56am on 01 Sep 2009, schnickelbop wrote:

    Re. Chelsea winning the title. Won't they be losing Drogba, Essien, Mikel and Kalou to African Cup of Nations this year? Might slow them up a bit, methinks.

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  • 16. At 08:58am on 01 Sep 2009, the_fosse wrote:

    The Boro were also my favourites to go up as winners but with the loss of Tuncay and Huth I'm having second thoughts. Big players at that level and I think there'll be missed. Although they have Johnson still - best in the league by a country mile.

    Leicester City to surprise you all! Top 6 here we come!

    http://sportales.com/soccer/125-years-of-leicester-city-football-club/

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  • 17. At 09:04am on 01 Sep 2009, MorpethExile wrote:

    Great blog Robbo, totally agree about Liverpool although one of my scouse mates wants me certified for saying it.

    Chelsea look ominously good and my beloved MCFC will rattle a few Big4 cages this season.

    What happens to refs when they get in front of the SAF glare?

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  • 18. At 09:05am on 01 Sep 2009, Flo Pat wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 19. At 09:06am on 01 Sep 2009, Stevies Scousers wrote:

    "If it wasn't for Gerrard, Benitez would've been out of a job long ago. It's like an Archbishop blaming Jesus for the state of Christianity". Absoloutely hilarious

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  • 20. At 09:07am on 01 Sep 2009, beijingren wrote:

    Another widely held pre-season assumption;
    Newcastle to struggle in the Championship and do a Leeds - FALSE (so far)

    Not a Newcastle fan by the way.

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  • 21. At 09:12am on 01 Sep 2009, hughesz wrote:

    Nice to see our goalkeeper in your dream team.My prediction for top 4 is:-
    Chelsea- just look very good
    Man Utd- could do with another A1 striker/midfield average
    Man City-strong squad and good manager
    Arsenal-the best team at times,but very inconsistent.

    The relegation zone is where I shall be focusing on.This year we could have at least 3 teams with less than 20 points.My view Bolton,Fulham & Wigan will go down.

    My own team ,well anything above 18th will do fine.




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  • 22. At 09:12am on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    10. At 08:11am on 01 Sep 2009, highpeakblue wrote:
    Wat abart villa everton and maybe fulham or the hammers?
    _________________________________________________________________________
    I expect them all to have average seasons which doesn't give you much to write about. Mind you Bill Kenwright must be pleased with Moyes's maths (eventually)...
    Lescott = Distin + Heitinga + 13 million quid. Value.

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  • 23. At 09:14am on 01 Sep 2009, bluenose in salisbury wrote:

    #14. It would be interesting to see what Ferguson could do with spending the same as Wenger per season, something tells me that the likes of Bolton and Birmingham wouldn't fear Old Trafford as much.

    You're totally right about Arsenal making too many mistakes, however Man Utd's problem is that this will not happen every game against the other 'big four' and this is why you won't win the league this season. Can't see all referee's missing penalty decisions like the Arshavin one at Stamford Bridge and Anfield.

    With reference to football being about goals, there again you're right, however the premiership would be a far less attractive proposition without Arsenal so lets be greatful for what they do bring to the beautiful game, (by the way i'm not an Arsenal fan).

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  • 24. At 09:18am on 01 Sep 2009, landevo wrote:

    "The point is - and it has been this for at least two seasons - no Stevie and no Nando makes 'Pool a dull boy". It's ridiculous statement. First of all - it's funny how you make this point considering the fact there was no game in last campaign Liverpool played with no Stevie and no Nando but this point at all says you make your points without looking on facts as I want to prove. During two seasons you mentioned Liverpool haven't lost ANY of Premiership games they started without both mentioned players. Last campaign they have beaten Man U at home starting without Gerrard and Torres and have won at Chelsea without Torres even on bench. Man U have won two of probably five games without Ronaldo last year and I can't remember anyone noticed they are dull boys without them despite the fact they were. Paul Tomkins wrote everything about condemning Liverpool in media for same things United are praised (look at Robson and MU's own Phil McNulty for example) and while he is too knowledgable to argue with muppets I think I should advise you to look at facts before you start your anti-Benitez and anti-Liverpool tirades once again.

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  • 25. At 09:19am on 01 Sep 2009, beardedshrimper wrote:

    Top blog Robbo, good work

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  • 26. At 09:27am on 01 Sep 2009, Richard wrote:

    #13 I don't like Spurs but am a Huddlestone fan too. Reminds me a lot of Glenn Hoddle who is one of my favourite players of all time.

    He just needs to keep his fitness in check and score a few more goals.

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  • 27. At 09:29am on 01 Sep 2009, Starburst_995 wrote:

    "Fred Flintstone defending of Yabu-Diaby-Doo was just ridiculous."

    "If it wasn't for Gerrard, Benitez would've been out of a job long ago. It's like an Archbishop blaming Jesus for the state of Christianity."

    Sublime, Robbo. I nearly fell of my chair laughing at the second one. Much needed medicine after a shocking long weekend away.

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  • 28. At 09:30am on 01 Sep 2009, Tatloaf wrote:

    Beyondthepale quick off the mark as per usual.

    Top work again Robbo.

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  • 29. At 09:41am on 01 Sep 2009, Zootmac wrote:

    Wenger has got the pose right for overlooking Rio.

    Somebody should have told him he wasn't playing.

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  • 30. At 09:45am on 01 Sep 2009, Dennistoundon wrote:

    Top Blog Robbo
    Over there with them Scots lads who are flicking the Vs, that's where.
    It's like an Archbishop blaming Jesus for the state of Christianity.
    Both Had me laughing.

    Why is Liverpool fans seem to need/ want every Pundit to back them for tittle.

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  • 31. At 09:45am on 01 Sep 2009, coxy0001 wrote:

    "Capello's called up Lennon as he looks like the best very fast headless chicken we have available at right-wing although Shaun Wright-Phillips is an identical footballer."

    Golden.

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  • 32. At 09:57am on 01 Sep 2009, Storm of Swords wrote:

    How can you imply that your prediction of Chelsea winning the league is true just because they've beaten Hull, Sunderland, Fulham and Burnley? Hardly Premiership winning victories. Laughable.

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  • 33. At 09:58am on 01 Sep 2009, hackerjack wrote:

    Agree with #15, January is going to be the month that decides this year's title for a number of reasons.

    First of all the ANC. Can Chelsea cope without Drogba and Essien/Mikel for up to a month (10th-31st January)? Currently their schedule for January is: Hull (a), Sunderland (h), Birmingham (h) and Burnley (a), plus the FA Cup, which is about as kind a set as they could have wished for. More of an issue for them could be Arsenal (h) and Everton (a) on 6th and 10th Feb respectively so any ANC hangover could still cost them dear.

    Then you have the transfer window. United and Liverpool still need to buy for me, United can and probably will if not today then in January as they need some kind of a x-factor in midfield without Ronaldo. Nani, Valencia, Carrick, Anderson, Fletcher and Park are good players but are best playing a supporting cast role. Of the current United midfielders only Scholes and Giggs look capable of opening up defenses with a cutting pass or stealing into the box at the right moment and neithr of those can be relied upon in the big matches anymore due to physical limitations, they should be easy to mark for a top defender. More worryingly no-one looks capable of really running at and scaring players. Fergie has shown in the past that he is not above making an odd but inspird signing to fix a short term problem in the past (Larsson, Blanc, Owen) so it has surprised me that he hasn't at least made a bid for a decent creative midfielder. The likes of Modric (before last week), Krancjar or van de Vaart were all available for decent prices if the interet was there, Robben just went to Munich for £22m, well within United's range and they could have likely got him for far less in the Ronaldo package.

    Liverpool just don't have the funds at the moment for that kind of purchase but do desperately need another midfielder and striker to take some of the burden, even if it's not a matchwinner. Wouldn't be surprised to see them take a couple in on loan in January, but then I was thinking they could nab Tuncay on that basis and they haven't.

    Interestingly there is one thing that Liverpool could do in my mind. Glen Johnson is a fantastic player and yes Liverpool were weak at RB last year, but even considering that I feel Rafa would be betr off deploying him further forward on the wing. Push Kuyt out to the left where he should be bettr than Babel or Riera have been if only because he will actualy support Torres like he does at present. That also free's up Benayoun to play in the centre instead of the frankly awful Lucas. Once Aquilani returns it leaves an any-three-from-four option of Aquilani, Mascherano, Gerrard and Benayoun with Lucas in reserve which isn't too bad a lineup. The only issue is who plays at RB? Once Agger is fit then Carragher could go ut there I suppose.

    I can't see anything other than a Chelsea title if they want it though. They pretty much match or beat the other top 4 teams in every department:

    Keeper - Cech and Reina are pretty level, beats Almunia and MU's GK rotation hands down.

    CB - Alex/Terry lose out to Man U here on quality and depth but then with idic, Ferdinand, O'Shea and Evans so do nearly every team. Match up to Liverpool and Arsenal well.

    FB - Cole/Boswinga are simply the best FB pairing in the world

    Mid - Lampard/Ballack/Essien/Mikel/Deco, I don't see a better squad of proven quality midfielders anywhere.

    Wings - Malouda/Cole/Kalou, Fairly weak compared to the rest of teh team but without Ronaldo out there it's as good as anyone in this league.

    Forwards - Drogba/Anelka, two of the world's best

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  • 34. At 10:01am on 01 Sep 2009, fabGunnerdownunder wrote:

    City have won 2 nil at Blackburn, 1 nil at home to Wolves and 1 nil away to Pompey. They did beat Barca, but their defence doesn't look brilliant, will be interesting to see how they fare against some more attacking and threatening opposition.

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  • 35. At 10:03am on 01 Sep 2009, Storm of Swords wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 36. At 10:06am on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    32. At 09:57am on 01 Sep 2009, PulpGrape wrote:
    How can you imply that your prediction of Chelsea winning the league is true just because they've beaten Hull, Sunderland, Fulham and Burnley? Hardly Premiership winning victories. Laughable.

    _________________________________________________________________________

    Because they beat Hull, Sunderland, Fulham and Burnley. Comfortably. Laugh able if they'd have lost to oooh, I dunno, Villa and Spurs. Or Burnley.

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  • 37. At 10:07am on 01 Sep 2009, someoneshouldgetdownthereandexplaintheoffsiderule wrote:

    dont see what the fuss about saturdays match was, united had the better oppurtunity's and could of won it by 3 or 4 in the end. it took a good shot and woeful goalkeeping for you to take the leed in the first half, couldnt see you scoring to be honest in the first half. We didnt play to good in the first half yet you never really caused us any problems.

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  • 38. At 10:08am on 01 Sep 2009, landevo wrote:

    # 30 I don't need to Robson back Liverpool to the title, I don't care who he backs (in fact always London clubs) but agree with #32 to call Chelsea champions now is hilarious. Also don't think Robson is pundit at all because to be one you have to have minimal football knowledge and to fill your articles with tons of disconcerting jokes is not enough. I only want people to make their points based on truth and not parroting easy stereotypes e.g. calling Benitez the biggest "rotator" ever ignoring the fact Ferguson and Wenger rotate more often or to say Liverpool is weak side without Gerrard and Torres even though results say sth completely different.

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  • 39. At 10:12am on 01 Sep 2009, Storm of Swords wrote:

    36. At 10:06am on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    32. At 09:57am on 01 Sep 2009, PulpGrape wrote:
    How can you imply that your prediction of Chelsea winning the league is true just because they've beaten Hull, Sunderland, Fulham and Burnley? Hardly Premiership winning victories. Laughable.

    _________________________________________________________________________

    Because they beat Hull, Sunderland, Fulham and Burnley. Comfortably. Laugh able if they'd have lost to oooh, I dunno, Villa and Spurs. Or Burnley.

    __________________________________________________________________________

    I think you'll find that all the top four will win those fixtures comfortably and before everyone screams that Utd lost to Burnley, they didn't play them at home.

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  • 40. At 10:15am on 01 Sep 2009, taz_manchester wrote:

    It looks as if Liverpool won’t push on from last season, their best season in donkey’s years. And with the financial state that the club is in it’s unlikely Rafa will buy himself back into contention anytime soon.

    And to think, the Liverpool hierarchy (David Moores) had the chance the sell the club to cash rich Middle Eastern business( as well as being fans on the club) but instead passed it on to the Yanks who have burden the club with debt that will seriously impact on the club for many years to come.

    PS Has anybody got the phone numbers for the Immigration Service or the Brazilian Embassy, as it’s clear that Lucas is on a false Brazilian passport.

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  • 41. At 10:17am on 01 Sep 2009, Ads wrote:

    Robbo, you've annoyed me. So much so I wish to call you a moron...but I'm not going to do that. (Clever, I know).
    I disagree with so much of what you have said that I don't know where to start. Here goes nothing.
    Chelsea. Agreed, there or there about.
    Man Utd. Won't miss Ronaldo. There won't be one player to fill his shoes, but collectively there is enough quality to score the goals he'd be expected to. As for his flair, well you take the rough with the smooth. His petulant attitude is gone, happy days.

    Arsenal. Strong/old/good enough to do what exactly? If you meant compete for the title, give me peace. Retain their 4th position? Questionable. I wouldn't be surprised if Man City by pass them come February.
    Liverpool. Agreed they are a 2 man team (but what a couple of players they are!). As regards Stevie G, if he isn't playing as well as he can then why shouldn't the manager let him know? It would be bad management to allow a low level of performance, especially from one of the players you rely on. Yours was a silly comment.
    Man City. Hard to predict. Not much to say, other than good luck to them.
    Spurs. Will fade away. 5th is the best they can look for, but I suspect that will be out of reach.
    Boro. Who cares?

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  • 42. At 10:22am on 01 Sep 2009, GenesisRed wrote:

    #23: "It would be interesting to see what Ferguson could do with spending the same as Wenger per season, something tells me that the likes of Bolton and Birmingham wouldn't fear Old Trafford as much."

    same old, same old. Sir Alex earned the right to spend the money, having done his time with little or no money very successfully at Aberdeen.

    Also, Sir Alex as brought through more players into the squad than Wenger has, and of a higher calibur: compare Beckham, Scholes, Giggs, Neville, Neville, Butt, Brown, Evans, Fletcher (and the others who have gone off to other premiership clubs) to Denilson, Diaby, Fabregas, Bendtner, Clichy, Cole, Eboue. And lets also consider how many of them are from the home countries.

    Sir Alex has always mixed home grown talent with purchased potential. Wenger merely steals them young (Fabregas), obscure (Viera), or maligned (Henry) and moulds them. When he purchases, he buys the likes of Van Bronkhorst and Wiltord.

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  • 43. At 10:23am on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    #37
    Classic one-eyed review of a match. Arsenal dominated. United's only clear-cut chances were when Arsenal were pushing for an equaliser... It was as a Hull friend of mine would say 'a right spawny win'.

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  • 44. At 10:23am on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    There's nothing that energises Fergie more than being written off at the start of the season - remember "you'll never win it with kids", the Beckham Effigies, the Ronaldo/Rooney winkergate crisis? We came back as champions every time.

    Yes, United are missing Ronaldo and still need to learn to play without him - this will take time and not everyone is going to make the grade. Nani, Valencia, Owen, Carrick, Anderson, Berbatov and Hargreaves all have questions to answer this season. However, its hard to see us getting any worse and we currently have 3 wins out of 4, with 1 big 4 clash already successfully negotiated.

    The best news for United is that expected rivals Liverpool look similarly weakened and Arsenal have been beaten at the top of their game. If we can hang on to Chelsea until Nik and Didier have a tiff or JT heroically injures himself again (and don't forget its African Nations cup this season), we stand a good chance...

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  • 45. At 10:27am on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    Absolutely tip top Robbo. Has made coming back into the office worthwhile!

    Anyway, I think Chelsea can get through January. Sp, Drogba, Essien, Mikel and Kalou?

    Right, put Beletti in to hold midfield if necessary (though noticeably, Ancelotti doesn't seem to use someone fixed in this position at home.)

    Also, keep Deco wrapped up in cotton wool over Christmas ready for work in January.

    Ballack and Lampard will still be there. Zhirkov and Joe Cole should be back by then. We could even play 4-3-3 during ACON with Anelka up front or try and partner him with Sturridge.

    Overall, Chelsea have started almost as perfectly as was possible.

    p.s. Robbo, perhaps you should of commented in the bottom half of the table as well, in these early days.

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  • 46. At 10:29am on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    Excellent work Robbo, although introducing religion into the blog is surely a waste of licence fees at the impartial BBC.

    My thoughts on the season remain pretty much the same;

    United are rubbish. But then we were rubbish last year and still won. Of course we did have Ronaldo, he reminds me of a really good-looking but high-maintenance girlfriend. You know it's bad for you and you know people may laugh but really they are jealous and you are better with her. But she costs you in the long run. And clears off to that rich bloke.

    Chelsea look a certaintity, but again they did last year as well. It remains to be seen if Ancelotti does a Scolari impression or delivers the goods.

    Liverpool? Well you know my thoughts there. I'm sticking to my outside the top 4 prediction, until that is the ref in their final match gives them 6 penalties because someone 'looked at St. Steven a bit funny' and they scrape in above City. Or Spurs. Probably Spurs, because if there's bad luck to be had then Spurs will always be the one's left with the dodgy lasagne.

    City will fly high, then they will most likely end up like that plane that landed in the river. A qualified success.

    Which leaves Arsenal. I really don't know how Arsene does it. I think it must be mind-control at this stage. Here we have a manager who has won less that Harry Redknapp in the last 4/5 years and still people bleat on about how he has the best team since Hannibal, Face and BA broke out Murdoch from the funny farm.

    What he has is the dirtiest team in the history of the Premiership and a misfit of crocks and nappy wearers. Saturday was a prime example of the brainwashing at work. United were pretty dire I'll grant you that, Michael Carrick had one of those games where the parents at the sideline would be going "Ahh, isn't it nice that he gave the useless young lad a run out" but still we had more of the ball and more of the chances.

    For a second though I thought Arsene was a normal bloke just having a laugh when he adopted the Messiah like pose behind the dugout laughing with the crowd. But then he ruined it all when he came out on Monday and told everyone to "Look into my eyes, you are very sleepy, they played anti-football, they kicked us, when you wake up you will realise that we are the best team ever."

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  • 47. At 10:36am on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    Genesis Red... seems a futile accusation that Wenger picks up 'obscure' players. Surely that means he's done great to spot them! Both Wenger and Fergie have brought through a lot of youngsters and granted the number of Brits at Arsenal has been a bit patchy. To say he stole Cesc is a little rich n all - Macheda anyone? Plus he just 'moulds' them? Again good management. Ronaldo was, well, Nani when he first arrived at OT but SAF coaxed some end-product and quality finishing from the lad and he got better (probably as much through his own endeavours too). Point is, every manager tries to assemble the best team by whatever means and Fergie's had more capital to make the big purchases when he's needed to. Don't think AFC were in for Rooney Rio etc, which might explain why they look for the likes of Vermaelen...
    Having said that, the Gooners relentless 'we're such paupers compared to the other big 4 clubs is wearing a tad thin n all. Arshavin didn't come for peanuts. You've flogged Adebayor and Toure for a healthy profit and once the Emirates is paid off you'll be back amongst the big boys.

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  • 48. At 10:37am on 01 Sep 2009, Lee_in_KL wrote:

    hahaha...great blog as usual Robbo - not quite as many muppets bighting this week as usual, but still a few out there with humour bypasses to keep the rest of us amused...some people just don't get it...
    As an exiled boro fan in Malaysia, I'm trying to look at our chances of getting back up this year as objectively as possible...but despite all the millions we've got in from player sales recently it looks like Gareth's been given 10 bob of it to find the extra players we need to ensure we have a fighting chance of avoiding mid table mediocrity...from his comments the last few days he seems as miserable as Susan Boyles personal quim trimmer...i just hope we don't lose a couple more players today without getting some half decent replacements...

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  • 49. At 10:46am on 01 Sep 2009, mccollio09 wrote:

    Just thinking you're chancing your arm a bit here robbo, you tip spurs for the top 4, you say man city are flying, arsenal are off to a cracker and look very optimistic, chelsea to win the title... That's without going into detail about Utd and Liverpool.

    Who exactly do you think will make up the top four then? Just interpreting your comments (and I presume I'm mistaken) alone makes the table look something like this:

    1 chelsea
    2 arsenal
    3 man city
    4 spurs
    5/6 man u/ liverpool not sure who you rate less

    also comments about Johnson were positive but considering you contradict yourself saying a right back won't change a damn thing.. 2 goals and 2 assists from the lad in 4 games would say differently.

    In spite of my criticism, great blogs read them all the time, keep up the good work!

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  • 50. At 10:58am on 01 Sep 2009, shredder91 wrote:

    I'm a Pool supporter and obviously you're trying to get a ride out of us all but come on.

    Rafa slated his senior players not Gerrard, and even if it was aimed at Gerrard, it had the desired effect.

    Davis shouldn't have been on the pitch by the time he fouled Lucas anyway - did you see the challenge he did on Mascherano, which wasn't punished?? I'm guessing not.

    And Johnson is only 'OK' in you're book? He's given us more from that position in four games than all his predecessors going back to the great Rob Jones.

    At this point last season Man U had 5 points from 12, so obvioulsy there is no way that anything could change is there?

    Our biggest problem, and i don't think i'll get many agreeing with me here, is Carra. He's trying to do too much, not trusting those in front and around him - look at the Skrtel injury, look at the glory balls, he is trying to play - as much as I think he is a true legend for the club, when Agger and Skrtel are fit, they are my first choice.

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  • 51. At 10:58am on 01 Sep 2009, szybako wrote:

    "the Fred Flintstone defending of Yabu-Diaby-Doo"..thats a good one.Ricky Gervais might be out of job soon..

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  • 52. At 11:02am on 01 Sep 2009, goonergetit wrote:

    Yes, Chelsea win the Premiership only if the Referees' let them ! Sheik Mansour propped up Barclays Bank this year, just sold his 11% steak (medium rare)and pocketed £1.4 billion profit for 7 months work, he's spent just over half that profit trying not to give Mark Hughes the Golden Hand Sheik !!
    He could buy another 8 Ronaldos with the leftovers ! Darren Fletcher should have had a T-40 Russian tank as back up for his tackle on Arshavin, those combine harvesters are much more difficult to disguise. The biggest story of the year will be the Tom and Georgy Show at Anfield, are they to cash in on Gerrard at the end of the year ? Liverpool have as much chance of winning the Premiership as Stevie G has of getting found "guilty" caught on camera stealing the crown jewels ! Man Utd to topple out of the top four and BerbuttsOff to service the debt, Fergie announces his retirement because combine harvesters have been banned from OT. There's no cast iron uncertainties because it's all inconclusively unconclusive, conclusion, the Godfathers' at the referee's association tell you what day of the week it is !

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  • 53. At 11:09am on 01 Sep 2009, landevo wrote:

    "Liverpool have as much chance of winning the Premiership as Stevie G has of getting found "guilty" caught on camera stealing the crown jewels"

    or as Arseanl winning at least one important game.

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  • 54. At 11:11am on 01 Sep 2009, The Trawler wrote:

    If Arsenal had dominated the match then they would've done a bit better than they did wouldn't they now. Foster should've saved their goal, though it should've been a penalty in the build-up. RvP should've scored early in the 2nd half but Foster saved it. That was the only save he made worthy of the name in the entire 98 minutes.

    United had more goal attempts, more possession and scored more goals. The 1st half was a very even - and dull - game that Arsenal edged, while the 2nd half was a bit of a thriller that United edged.

    I have absolutely no idea what Middlesborough are up to.


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  • 55. At 11:18am on 01 Sep 2009, WhitleyBayWonTheVase wrote:

    Robbo, I'm surprised you didn't comment on the Gelled Tumbler and his debut.

    Scoring a penalty was positive for him. However, I was definitely expecting to see you mention how his midas touch with free kicks appeared to have deserted him in Madrid. Anyone who saw the replays of what has got to be the worst free kick Ronaldo has ever taken will know precisely what I mean.

    Chelsea have to be firm favourites now though, I don't think anyone could argue with that. United look disjointed and uneasy with themselves, but they're scraping wins together and I think that makes them the most serious challenge to Chelsea because everyone knows they will hit form as they always do.

    Liverpool, well, next season. Again.

    Spurs - maybe we'll know a little more after next weekend when United visit them. If Spurs win then I'd agree they appear to serious Top 4 contenders (anyone who thinks they'll finish in the top two needs serious medical attention).

    Arsenal - oh dear. You do have to feel a little sorry for them and Mr Wenger in particular after Saturday. I'm still not convinced they're going to be up there though.

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  • 56. At 11:19am on 01 Sep 2009, JoeDavisRoach wrote:

    A question to "Robbo" - do you take pride in your work?

    The thought occured to me as a read through another weak attempt at humour from the exhausted viewpoint of the fictional northern working class man that maybe "Robbo" (or Niall), is actually just spewing this stuff out without any care.

    Take the following as an example: Were one to visit the unhealthy and low class establishment that is McDonalds they would undoubtadly find countless workers throwing together standardised, unhealthy and poor quality meals to serve people as quick as possible. Do they take an ounce of pride in their finished product? Unquestionably no. They try to present as much bilge as quickly as possible to the unworthys that dine there.

    Perhaps its the same with "Robbo" (or Niall). Maybe in fact he is as tired of this "Robbo" monster he has created as I am and, like the McDonalds worker, seeks only to produce as much written sewerage as possible without any regard for its quality, appearance or substance in order to satisfy his boss and the hungry customer. And also perhaps, he has no real alternative other than do it. Perhaps "Robbo" (or Niall) has sought to expand his boundries into something that qualifies as real journalism or comedy but hasnt been afforded the opportunity. If this is the case then I would accept I am being overly critical (although the blog and basic concept is poor and at this stage over worn).

    I suppose that would be one point.

    On a positive note - it wasnt your worst ever blog. No mention of the "Blue Bell", no "any roads" and and a more well rounded approach to the subject material with a more reasonable analysis. I note you have put more effort into actually making some realistic points rather than trying to turn every single point into a cliched one liner. This provides a better balance to the overall work. Keep up these improvements.

    As for your actual points - Chelsea so far look like the team most likely to handle the pressure when the going gets tough and one would expect them to keep improving as they become more familiar with the new manager. Man Utd look vunerable and slightly disjointed. Leaving both Berbatov and Owen on the bench against Arsenal was a strange move. Liverpool look to have regressed and lack creativity. If Gerrard and Torres arent firing then the team looks doomed. Maschereno, Lucas, Kuyt etc cant seem to provide the necessary flair. Everton look to have similar problems without Arteta and with guys like Fellaini seemingly off the boil. Arsenal have played some good stuff but the Utd game highlighted alot of their old problems of not getting the job done despite being the better team.

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  • 57. At 11:26am on 01 Sep 2009, Gerbinator wrote:

    I thought that BBC News prided themselves on unbiased reporting?

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  • 58. At 11:26am on 01 Sep 2009, Lorenz-Of-Arabia wrote:

    Lovely stuff as always, Robbo. Been reading the blog for ages - keeps me sane and entertained out here in the desert. Thought I'd join in the posting.

    Still early days in the EPL I'd say to go too far with predictions but it's been ticking along nicely...Spurs spending some time top of the league is nice to see..coupled with the Ashes win, what's not to like?

    Some value to be had in hedging a bet or two based on your predictions for the title. I'd have gone for a punt on Liverpool after last season's performance, but somehow it seems the clock has been turned back. It's an odd state of affairs up there. I wonder how long Rafa can stick with having a pauper's purse in the transfer market? - compared to some that is.

    Anyway, glad to see a poor turnout of the naysayers and blog-haters to this point. Maybe if we ignore them, they'll put their toys back in the pram then go off and irritate other people instead.

    Long way to go yet, should be an interesting season.


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  • 59. At 11:26am on 01 Sep 2009, sleepingsilentkiller wrote:

    # 33
    in community shield match i think chelsea have same squad. but they won on penalties. they levelled the match with lampard's goal (in which evra was blocked and fouled by ballack)
    so i don't think chelsea will win the title. they have a good run. but they have not played against top 6 yet.

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  • 60. At 11:27am on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    #56 - Robbo gets outed more or less every blog, it isn't big or clever to do it. Who are you going after next, Banksy or Father Christmas?

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  • 61. At 11:27am on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:



    Do I detect a chink of light at the end of the JDR rainbow? Probably not. But you never know.

    Joe please just answer the question I posed last week, please, just for me. This blog is meant to be comedy and some of us find it funny, you clearly don't but can you please tell us what you do find funny? Who are your favourite comedians etc?

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  • 62. At 11:29am on 01 Sep 2009, Captain Caveman wrote:

    JoeDavisRoach

    You need to grow up

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  • 63. At 11:29am on 01 Sep 2009, U10022443 wrote:

    #24, Liverpool love there "facts" dont they! The fact is you wont win the league with Benitez and you know it!

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  • 64. At 11:31am on 01 Sep 2009, U10022443 wrote:

    sorry 'their' facts!

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  • 65. At 11:34am on 01 Sep 2009, arundini wrote:

    Landevo, relax, Robbo's blog is a bit of fun. Go somewhere else if you want a big row and to analyse the last 5 seasons and take issue with every last point..........etc

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  • 66. At 11:35am on 01 Sep 2009, judddd wrote:

    JoeDavisRoach.

    Cripes!

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  • 67. At 11:36am on 01 Sep 2009, landevo wrote:

    # 63 No, I don't know it. If you know it before it happens you're The Man! So tell me why 'cause I want to know it.

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  • 68. At 11:37am on 01 Sep 2009, Captain Caveman wrote:

    If u look at jdr's other posts he seems to have some sort of vendetta against anything or anyone other than himself

    just ignore him methinks :)

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  • 69. At 11:38am on 01 Sep 2009, arthur blundell wrote:

    Arsenal were only the better team in the 1st half on Saturday, I have never seen an Arsenal side give away posession as much as they did in the 2nd half. Song and Denilson are average players, but there again so are Fletcher, Wes Brown and O'shea.

    Only the brave or the foolhardy make predictions by 1st of September.
    I Would concede that Chelsea will probably take the title but think back to October last year and it was obvious then Arsenal would take it and Spurs would be relegated, Hull probable runners up !!!. It is now a seasonal custom that Arsenal hit a flat patch mid session and Liverpool make a slow start. Spurs will finish 5th or 6th.

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  • 70. At 11:44am on 01 Sep 2009, landevo wrote:

    arundini - that's why I don't agree to call him "pundit":)

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  • 71. At 11:45am on 01 Sep 2009, oldnickyb wrote:

    Good blog as per usual Robbo, a word about my lot - Stoke City

    Just a quick thank you for Tuncay (and Huth) who is in my opinion, a better footballer than Tevez and £20Million cheaper.

    He ran 40 yards with the ball last Saturday - for Stoke!!!!!!

    Also, Shawcross has been playing out of his skin this season, given that some inferior Centre Halves are going for ridiculous prices, wonder how much he will go for in the January window??

    Good luck for the season

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  • 72. At 11:50am on 01 Sep 2009, Zootmac wrote:

    It was Pascal who finished a lengthy letter to a friend by apologising because he "didn't have time to write a shorter one".

    You should read some Pascal, Joe.

    The clumsy, contrived, sub-literate McDonald thing wasn't an "example". It was a tragic attempt at metaphor.

    God, you're dumb.

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  • 73. At 11:54am on 01 Sep 2009, Harry wrote:

    Middlesborough should go up, but lacking a bit of firepower with the loss of Tuncay and co.

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  • 74. At 11:55am on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    I think that is the first time I have ever seen Zoot get a little bit tetchy. Joe, do you see what you have done?

    Be afraid, be very afraid!

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  • 75. At 11:56am on 01 Sep 2009, War Baby wrote:

    I wonder how many of Robbo's critics could do the job even half as well. It can't be easy thinking up amusing metaphors week in and week out - and to have them condemned as cliches is itself laughable. Keep right on Robbo.

    P.S. Robbo, how did your "other trial team" (i.e. Hartlepool) get on on Saturday - LOL

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  • 76. At 12:01pm on 01 Sep 2009, grandMrP wrote:

    This mornings news '.....Kranjcar set for Tottenham' - What a team they are building, quality player there - have to agree top 4 is possible and I would like to see it to be honest. The top 4 needs shaking up.
    Have been reading this blog for ages - extremely funny 99.85% of the time. I like the banter on here but the likes of JoeDavisRoach & jdr must get a life or go see a professional about their anger issues or is it just low self esteem.......

    Anyway as a Boro fan I think they have dug themselves in too deep to climb out this season. Toon will come out ontop once again.

    Also thought the Wenger incident was one of the funniest things I've seen on TV (after a few pints in the pub that is....) - Book him for the Edinburgh festival next year. His act was a cross between Marcel Marceau & Inspector Clouseau - brilliant!
    Keep it up Arsene !

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  • 77. At 12:06pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    -----------------------------------
    BREAKING DEADLINE TRANSFER DAY NEWS
    -----------------------------------

    JDR has been spotted hanging round the Phil McNulty training ground. His agent PMS has said that a deal could be in the works for a transfer to the other blog if the necessary funds are raised.


    Can we start a collection?

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  • 78. At 12:11pm on 01 Sep 2009, Auqakuh wrote:

    omg teh saem awld stuf againzz!!!11onerone

    ...someone had to. I intend that garbage satirically.

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  • 79. At 12:13pm on 01 Sep 2009, Auqakuh wrote:

    Er, I do have one complaint though.

    "well you know when you're dumped by a cracking looking lass and your best mate Colin (plump and good at pub quizzes) takes you down the boozer to cheer you up and all you can do is look at this well-meaning lummox that lass's face just comes into greater focus and all you can hear Jim Bowen in your head yelling 'Here's what you could've won!'? That's Valencia at United."

    That made no sense, mate. Rewrite it so it's in English.

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  • 80. At 12:16pm on 01 Sep 2009, CaesarWasAnIrishman wrote:

    Great blog Robbo. You're reckoning that Spurs will finish in the top 4, as was your prediction at the start of the season, but has Modric's injury not done anything to re-asses your thoughts on this?

    Also, what about City? They've started like Chelsea under Mourinho, grinding out results without seeing anything like the quality their players are capable of. A possiblility of finishing top 4 as well? It'll be interesting to see how this pans out, and who the main losers will be come the end of the season if they hit potential.

    Can't see Chelsea winning it though, considering the loss they'll have to endure when the African Nations starts up. No Drogba or Essien (No mention of Kalou, don't rate him)will be tough to overcome.

    United have started slow, but then as was pointed out, 5 points from the first 12 last season was hardly inspiring, but yet they went on to win the PL, with mediocre performances by their standards.

    Liverpool will finish outside the top 4 (and it hurts as a red to say that) unless Aquilaini proves to be as much of a hit as Torres in his first year. He needs to fill a huge gap left by Alonso in midfield. Unfortunately, I don't think he'll be up to the job, being as fragile as he is. 5th is where I think Liverpool are destined for, and possibly cup success.

    Which leaves Arsenal, merchants of the beautiful game..... sometimes. The only real question mark I'd have against them would be their ability in the big games. Arshavin is a special talent without question, but except for his goal and being mowed down by Fletcher, was largely anonymous on Saturday. I think RVP is one of the more over-rated players in the Arsenal team, but he may yet prove me wrong. Still, I reckon they have enough about them with Fabregas, Arshavin, Gallas (playing as well as ever) as a spine in the team, they are the ones to watch this year.

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  • 81. At 12:17pm on 01 Sep 2009, arundini wrote:

    GazUtd put me down for a fiver ! And if you pull off the transfer I will happily cut you in for 10 per cent as agent number 2 (low by PL standards anyway !)

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  • 82. At 12:22pm on 01 Sep 2009, red lion wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 83. At 12:26pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    "I hope you get the drift."

    Yes we do. You can't spell.

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  • 84. At 12:28pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    80. At 12:16pm on 01 Sep 2009, CaesarWasAnIrishman wrote:

    Can't see Chelsea winning it though, considering the loss they'll have to endure when the African Nations starts up. No Drogba or Essien (No mention of Kalou, don't rate him)will be tough to overcome.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    See my post number 45.

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  • 85. At 12:29pm on 01 Sep 2009, grandMrP wrote:

    Almost as bad as the McDonalds rant!

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  • 86. At 12:31pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    #82 but I'll play along (spelling mistakes corrected)

    A. No Lamps and no Drog makes Chelski a team still capable of challenging for the title.

    B. No Cesc and no Van Persie makes Arsenal a team still capable of challenging for the title.

    C. No Rooney and no Ferdinand makes ManUtd a team still capable of challenging for the title.

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  • 87. At 12:37pm on 01 Sep 2009, red lion wrote:

    #23. A referee once said that "a good team is a team that wins matches' (even with a little help from the referee). In case you have forgotten, Manu** won 2-1. End of story.

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  • 88. At 12:46pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    #97 And was that referee speaking in order to justify a ludicrous decision he had just made.

    Wasn't Tom Henning Ovrebo was it? :-)

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  • 89. At 12:46pm on 01 Sep 2009, CaesarWasAnIrishman wrote:

    #84

    Just read your previous post at 45, and while I'd agree that Lampard, Ballack and Cole would go a good way to cover for the loss of Drogba and Essien, I can't see it being enough. Base it on last season, when Essien didn't really figure and Drogba was acting like his rattle was taken away. Not exactly world beaters with Deco calling the shots in midfield. Zhirkov is new to the PL and will need time to adjust, as did Malouda, who you failed to mention....

    Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying Chelsea wont win the title, I just believe that the African Nations will hit them hard and could play a major role in whether or not they end up as Champions. If I'm wrong, I'll gladly eat my words, but I reckon that the title will end up in London, just not at Stamford Bridge.


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  • 90. At 12:49pm on 01 Sep 2009, happy_red wrote:

    Great blog as usual Robbo.

    After 3 or 4 games it is clearly too early for any predictions.
    Man Utd will play badly until Xmas but will scrape wins like they did against Arsenal. Chelsea look strong so far, but wait till it gets a bit cold and the Africans disappear. Liverpool will get stronger as the season progresses and Arsenal will drop points when they come up against the battlers and the other top 4. Spurs will drop away as always, Villa likewise and Man City will have a strange series of losses sometime around Xmas which will put them below the top four.

    My prediction - top 3 will be Liverpool, Utd and Chelsea in no particular order and Arsenal fourth. Not based on current form which at this time of year is meaningless, but based on squads. After 4 games last season Utd were in a terrible position but ended up winning it so nothing is too predictable.

    Another international break, the end of the transfer window and the heady optimism of the football fan. Isn't life great!

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  • 91. At 12:52pm on 01 Sep 2009, CaesarWasAnIrishman wrote:

    #77

    PGaz, put me down for €20 which could increase to €50 depending on appearances on other blogs. And you can put me down to cover a €50 signing on fee as well.

    Just call me Sheikh Caesar!!!!

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  • 92. At 12:58pm on 01 Sep 2009, WoolwichMo wrote:

    #91 Please don't encourage this Gaz Utd bloke he gets on my boobs as it is.

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  • 93. At 1:00pm on 01 Sep 2009, Brandyrecovery wrote:

    As a neutral (Swindon Fan, watch Fulham cos that's now my local team) I must agree that Man Utd had a very "jammy" win on Sat. Some of the Utd fans on here are so blinkered it's unreal! The lino made a great call but on another day might have missed the offside at the end, and 2-2 would have been a much fairer reflection on the game. Utd's chances came at the end when Arsenal were chasing the game. I think if refs can be brave enough to give free-kicks / Pens when a player stays on his feet this can help to eradicate diving. As such, I thought Van Persie should've had a pen shortly before Fletcher dived in on Arshavin - cannot believe that the ref didn't give that. Fergie defo has an effect on the refs.

    For those earlier posts that castigate Wenger's signings, surely you must realise that Utd and Chelsea have effectively bought their titles in the past 5 years. Rooney £30m, Berbatov £25m, Carrick £18m, Hargreaves £20m, Ferdinand £25m. Yes, Essien is a fantastic player but that's what I'd expect for £25m. This isn't necessarily a criticism, more an observation. It's the world we live in. Selling Toure and Adebayor is the reality for Arsenal, who spend on a similar level to Villa / Spurs and should therefore achieve a similar placing each year.

    The top teams have always spent the most, even back in the 80's when Liverpool were on top. Even then, before Utd had won any recent titles, they still spent (relatively) big on players like Mark Hughes, Brian McClair, Ince, Pallister (£2.3m was a record for a defender back then), Keane, etc. They also produced that fantstic youth team (Beckham, Scholes, Nevilles, etc) that went on to become the basis of their success. But it's wrong to imply that Fergie built a team on a shoestring - you utillise all the means that you have and Utd have always had more then most others. That's why I welcome the millionnaire owners of Chelsea / Man City...I can't see any other way of bridging the gap.

    Still, it's great to see Utd vs Arsenal - matches between these 2 are usually fantastic, where as Liverpool and to a slightly lesser extent Chelsea, often play very negatively in the big games which doesn't make for great viewing. But can be effective, especially in 1-off matches such as Champs league.

    What Liverpool fans here have failed to address is not that Torres / Gerrard are the only match-winners in the team (along with Johnson on recent form!) but that the next most important player there was Alonso. His departure is the main reason why Liverpool won't do as well as last year.

    Utd are weaker, Liverpool are weaker, Arsenal still lack the strength in depth, so it's Chelsea for the league. Unless...come on Man City!!!

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  • 94. At 1:08pm on 01 Sep 2009, CaesarWasAnIrishman wrote:

    Actually Gaz, double that signing on fee to €100.

    #91, see above.

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  • 95. At 1:10pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    #89

    You may be right (and about Malouda - whoops!) but there is something just a bit more attacking and steely about Chelsea this season, including pre-season.

    I am more confident now than I was this time last year.

    Guess time will tell.

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  • 96. At 1:17pm on 01 Sep 2009, Mightyblooze wrote:

    JoeDavisRoach

    What a pedant. Will probably be re-sitting his Eng Lit A level at a college near you sometime soon! If Private Eye still runs Pseuds Corner JDR's rant would make a perfect entry. He will be hoisted by his own petard!

    As for the blog, great stuff and spot on. Anyone who thinks Man U were the better team against Arsenal needs a new pair of specs. A draw would have been a fair result. Similarly anyone who thinks Lpool are title contenders with the current gaping Alonso sized hole in their team is probably on the happy pills.

    Oh, and England will beat Croatia 2-0.

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  • 97. At 1:20pm on 01 Sep 2009, AnalMcAnal wrote:

    JoeDavisRoach...

    Do you eat at Macdonalds? I suspect you don't because you know you're not going to like it?

    If that's the case, why do you read Robbo's blogs? Are you that short of things to do that you waste your time reading a blog you know that you don't like and is going to annoy you?


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  • 98. At 1:23pm on 01 Sep 2009, lounge_lizard wrote:

    Hughes will still be at City for another 2 seasons at least.

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  • 99. At 1:24pm on 01 Sep 2009, Starburst_995 wrote:

    @77

    If funds are tight, would a loan deal be on?
    All dependant on who pyas his wages for said deal and whatnot.

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  • 100. At 1:31pm on 01 Sep 2009, CaesarWasAnIrishman wrote:

    #99

    Careful now, you'll be slated for encouraging Gaz!

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  • 101. At 1:36pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    The moaners encourage me! A good bit of moaning always makes me pay more attention.

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  • 102. At 1:38pm on 01 Sep 2009, Worst_Firm_In_The_World wrote:

    GazUtd

    Superior Ronaldo analogy. Couldn't empathize more.

    Are you Robbo's natural heir?

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  • 103. At 1:39pm on 01 Sep 2009, Starburst_995 wrote:

    At 1:31pm on 01 Sep 2009, CaesarWasAnIrishman wrote:

    #99

    "Careful now, you'll be slated for encouraging Gaz!"

    ______________________________________________

    Worse things could happen.

    I could spend the majority of my day twice a week bending everyone's ear about how a certain blog is a waste of the license payer's money, that it should be torn from it's moorings and cast into the North sea ;)

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  • 104. At 1:40pm on 01 Sep 2009, CaesarWasAnIrishman wrote:

    #101

    Then JDR must really light your fuse.....

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  • 105. At 1:44pm on 01 Sep 2009, Moyseyside wrote:

    Re No. 20
    Leeds actually lost the playoff final in their first Championship season, the year after that they "did a Leeds" - so NUFC could still bomb out of our minds forever, who knows.

    Everton to spend at least £12m before 5pm today, come on Moysey!!

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  • 106. At 1:44pm on 01 Sep 2009, Worst_Firm_In_The_World wrote:

    CeasarWasAnIrishman

    Your username and "careful now" comment made me laugh. Couldn't help but think of Dougal and Ted protesting outside the Passion of St Tibulus.

    "Down with this sort of thing".

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  • 107. At 1:47pm on 01 Sep 2009, dodiesmith wrote:

    Enjoyed your latest, Robbo, but then I expect to....
    that's why I tune in.

    Thanks for the brilliant statement re: Steven Gerrard.
    He carries Liverpool on his shoulders. I'm counting on Torres helping him out. I know Liverpool fans are loyal to Rafa - he got the support when the US owners lost it - but the earth isn't moving, Robbo....
    it's early days so I'll keep "wishin and hopin" once again!

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  • 108. At 1:49pm on 01 Sep 2009, JoeDavisRoach wrote:

    I dont have time to reply to every post but the gist of things is:

    1. The McDonalds example I used above can be best summarized as sacrificing quality in the name of quantity. Niall has to produce 2 to 3 of these blogs a week and as such I suppose its to be expected that repitition will occur and quality will suffer. As such I proposed the introduction of a bit of variety. Listening to "Robbos" tired and predictable outlook on sport at such short spaced intervals is bound to induce many of the problems I have mentioned on previous posts. The BBC feel the need to have a comedy sports blog but offer little or no variety other than "Robbos" stereotyped musings. Were Niall to produce "Robbo" on a less frequent basis he would have the opportunity to showcase his range as a comedic writer while allowing a painfully shopworn fictional chacter some time to recover a degree of freshness.

    As I mentioned above though, this isnt Nialls worst ever blog by a fair bit (there has been some truly horrific ones) and Ive also noted that perhaps Niall doesnt have a choice in the matter (although I really cant see why the BBC would object to Niall writing a non "Robbo" column.) Still, there has been less of the repitive "Blue Bell mentions" and slightly more substance than the standard "Robbo" blog.

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  • 109. At 1:55pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:



    It has gotten to the stage where I am actually laughing at JDR's posts! Seriously, it has to be a wind up of some description.

    Joe - you still haven't answered me as to what comediens/comedy you like?


    #102

    "Are you Robbo's natural heir? "

    I thought it was a wig.

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  • 110. At 1:56pm on 01 Sep 2009, arundini wrote:

    So how much have we raised so far to transfer JDR out of here ? Or has he already left by mutual consent ?!

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  • 111. At 2:00pm on 01 Sep 2009, judddd wrote:

    Wow. JDR. Once again, cripes!

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  • 112. At 2:00pm on 01 Sep 2009, Worst_Firm_In_The_World wrote:

    I thought it was a wig.

    ---------------------------------------------------------

    I'll set them up. You bat them out of the park.

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  • 113. At 2:04pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    I've just had a Eureka! moment in case the transfer doesn't go through before the deadline.

    We have a blogoff between Robbo and JDR with the loser being relegated to internet obscurity (ie dailmail.co.uk) and the winner basking in the glory of having won an internet competition (of sorts).

    Rules as I have came up with them so far (feel free to add your own)...

    1. The blog must be comedic in content. For those who don't understand that means it's purpose is to make people laugh. (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laughter if you don't know what that is)

    2. Votes are cast by blog comment regulars. One idiot one vote.

    3. If the words stereotype or repetitive are mentioned even once you are officially disqualified.

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  • 114. At 2:04pm on 01 Sep 2009, Mightyblooze wrote:

    JDR

    For a pedant, your grammer and speling is rubish

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  • 115. At 2:06pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    Well, I for one am I'm loving JDR's posts

    It's like a soap opera, this - i'm waiting for the moment that Robbo finally snaps, 'fesses up to shagging JDR's missus and apologizes whereupon they can become mates again and have a pint together at the Bluebell

    or maybe Robbo jilted JDR at the altar and now it's payback, forum jibes are just he start.....

    or is it a case of unrequited love that's tipped over the line into stalker territory.....?


    either way i'm hooked and can't wait for next episode....

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  • 116. At 2:08pm on 01 Sep 2009, WoolwichMo wrote:

    I would like to make clear that by asking Mr Caesar not to encourage Mr Gaz that wasn't in defence of Mr Pompous Butthole Joe Davies Roach lord no. If you encourage GazUtd then this is what happens you get pompous buttholes responding. That's why he does my boobs in. He's like a magnet for pompous buttholes.

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  • 117. At 2:12pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:



    I'm a magnet for pompous buttholes? But JDR continually ignores me and says he has no problem with me.

    Although I do like the thought of a magnet like that. I think there's money in it. Catch me next week describing it in detail on Dragons Den. If Theo Papwhatshisface is levitated out of his chair towards me then you know it definitely works!

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  • 118. At 2:14pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    Oh and for those who thought Man United wouldn't be able to replace Ronaldo - what say you now after Rooney's classic dive on Saturday evening? Top class, that - saw the keeper come out, knocked the ball past him, then beautifully dragged his legs across the turf and into his out-stretched arms and tumbled - It was so good the Ref didn't even notice the tell-tale signs of the scrape in the pitch.

    No doubt UEFA will be charging him any day now.......

    ;o)

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  • 119. At 2:17pm on 01 Sep 2009, Starburst_995 wrote:

    I'm not so sure about a market existing for a 'Pompous butthole magnet.'

    A repellant on the other hand ...

    *Legs it to the Patents Office*

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  • 120. At 2:20pm on 01 Sep 2009, Jimmy2Times wrote:

    #42

    SAF has brought a few stinkers himself!!!!

    Veron, Poborsky, Cryuff, Hargreaves, Forlan, Kleberson, Djemba-Djemba....

    Need I Continue????..........

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  • 121. At 2:24pm on 01 Sep 2009, CaesarWasAnIrishman wrote:

    #116

    I'm confused, is it JDR, GazUtd, or me that is the pompous butthole? Or am I just easily confused?

    #117

    Spit my tae out there reading that one!!!!!!

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  • 122. At 2:24pm on 01 Sep 2009, CaesarWasAnIrishman wrote:

    And no, I didn't mis-spell "Tae"

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  • 123. At 2:25pm on 01 Sep 2009, SS11 wrote:

    1) Chelsea will win the Premier League title. - Sorry Robbo, dont see it happening. Age is catching up with players and will drop points from January onwards. However I see them making to Champs League Semi's against Real Madrid.

    2) Manchester United will miss Ronaldo. - Who cares? This is a boring story. Why should they be missing Ronaldo when the best EPL player last season was Ryan Giggs.

    3) Arsenal aren't strong/old/good enough. - The critics who say this very thing will be biting their hands off come May 2010. Arsenal are going to win the EPL this season and also could be a double season.

    4) Liverpool has best chance of lifting the Premier League. Is this a joke telling competition! Who has Liverpool got to win EPL with Gerrard/Torres looking woefully out of form

    5) Man City need time to bed in. Only time will tell. Looks like all players are geared up for the challenge and living the pre season hype. 5th place should do good for Citah!

    6) Spurs will finish fourth. Yes, Their best chance to knock Liverpool of the pedestal. Lennon had a bad season last year, with this being a world cup year-he will prove himself.

    7)The Big One. Will Boro bounce back? Yes, they should. Southgate will do his best. Newcastle will be a tough contenders provided they dont lose any more players

    Finally team of the season so far (4-4-2)...

    Shay Given, Glen Johnson, Ryan Shawcross, William Gallas, Ashley Cole, Aaron Lennon, Cesc Fabregas, Michael Essien, Andrei Arshavin,
    Didier Drogba, Wayne Rooney

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  • 124. At 2:30pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    123. At 2:25pm on 01 Sep 2009, GunnerFan243 wrote:

    2) Manchester United will miss Ronaldo. - Who cares? This is a boring story. Why should they be missing Ronaldo when the best EPL player last season was Ryan Giggs.


    LOL! v. good

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  • 125. At 2:32pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:



    Caeser here is the explanation;

    JDR is the pompous butthole
    I am the pompous butthole attractor
    You are the pompous butthole attractor's facilitator.


    Does that clear things up?

    If that tea was too hot and you burnt yourself then you could probably sue!

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  • 126. At 2:35pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    You get better with age Robbo, thank-you! Even JDR agrees so it must be true.

    Like others, I especially appreciated the imagery of Archbishop Rafa. He'll need a pointed hat but sadly his might have a large 'D' on it.

    The uncertainty of the outcome is surely what makes it all so worthwhile but it seems that there'll be 6 teams in the top 4 this year, all being equal it will be settled by the alphabet for the first time in history and this will lead to a massive re-naming campaign. Wenger will realise the possibility before anyone else and by February his team will be Aaaaaaaarsenal and he'll secure a place in Europe (pipping arry's XI) as a result of his foresight. Rivaled only by post #88 who was able to reply to post #97 before it was written. (I know, evil mis-use of the typo but it's hard to resist the good ones).

    Last night, while doing my lung cleansing exercise on the treadmill, Fox Soccer Channel were showing Chelsea v Spurs from September '03. The commentator mentioned that Abramovich's first choice for purchase was Spurs, can you shed any light on this? How different things could have been! It's almost like Hitler being turned down for the Vienna School of Music as a lad. On such moments humanity hinges.

    The chap who suggested a new blogging position for Gaz has my wholehearted support and from what I understand, like Lescott, Gaz might be on the look out for a new six figure a week challenge.

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  • 127. At 2:38pm on 01 Sep 2009, CaesarWasAnIrishman wrote:

    #125

    If I sue and win, there'll be no need to ask Theo and Duncan for finance. I'l make you an offer.

    Having said that, if I sue and lose, I still reckon I'm entitled to a share in the venture as the pompous butthole magnet facilitator.

    Cheers for clearing that one up for me.

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  • 128. At 2:39pm on 01 Sep 2009, scarolinared wrote:

    Good Stuff as usual Robbo

    Chelsea for the League by at least 10 points, and probably 15. I know they have not played any of the top teams yet, but they have looked very powerful. Just put their top 16 players on a sheet and compare it with the top 16 of anyone else and it is clear they are the best squad by a long way. I think Ancelotti has had enough experience of working in a top down dominated organization from his years under Berlusconi, and that he can fit with the Abramovic style.

    The race for positions 2 - 6 will be the interesting part of the season (as well as the relegation fight). I think this will be the tightest fight for a long time, the remainder of the big 4 are weaker than last year - United significantly (age and loss of Ronaldo), Arsenal a bit weaker (but they only scraped 4th last year) and at Liverpool Alonso is a loss but it just looks as though they are always destined to self destruct in the League. City & Spurs look threatening, the next 2 rounds of games will tell us a lot but I think they will be there at the end of the season.

    1 Chelsea
    2 United
    3 City
    4 Arsenal
    5 Liverpool
    6 Spurs

    PS TommyOnion - there was rarely a more stonewall penalty than the foul on Rooney on Saturday. Even the Arsenal players (a more whingeing lot you would struggle to find) hardly raised a complaint.

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  • 129. At 2:41pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    128. At 2:39pm on 01 Sep 2009, scarolinared wrote:

    PS TommyOnion - there was rarely a more stonewall penalty than the foul on Rooney on Saturday. Even the Arsenal players (a more whingeing lot you would struggle to find) hardly raised a complaint.


    aaaaaahhhhhh but that was the beauty of it - only after seeing the behind the goal reply could you see it was a dive

    http://i26.tinypic.com/2lnv8nt.jpg

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  • 130. At 2:42pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    Thanks Trotter, like Lescott I do seem to cause some disharmony. But I am happy enough with my government provided stipend.

    I understood Abramovich's first choice was United, after seeing the match v Real that ended up in a goalfest. Imagine if he had have bought us, the hatred could have clogged up the internet for good.

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  • 131. At 2:53pm on 01 Sep 2009, Andreisgiant wrote:

    I would welcome a blog for Gary. That way when I click in to Robbo's blog, I wouldn't have to read his pollution.

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  • 132. At 2:57pm on 01 Sep 2009, wedontknowfootball wrote:

    as always top post today, robbo.

    as much as i hate to admit it, i think chelsea will win it this season. the first few games were abit rusty with the new diamond formation but once they put on some oil on those hinges i think it can be devastating for oppositions.

    http://wdkf.co.uk/

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  • 133. At 2:57pm on 01 Sep 2009, thesefeetdontdance wrote:

    32. At 09:57am on 01 Sep 2009, PulpGrape wrote:
    How can you imply that your prediction of Chelsea winning the league is true just because they've beaten Hull, Sunderland, Fulham and Burnley? Hardly Premiership winning victories. Laughable

    How did Man U win the league last season ? Certainly not by beating the other top 4 teams (5 pts out of 18).

    Chelsea are beating the teams they should beat, you can lose twice to Man U, Arsenal and Liverpool and still win the title, by picking up 90 points from 30 wins and 2 draws.

    Its what Utd are good at.

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  • 134. At 3:02pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    TommyOnion

    I agree with you that Rooney's fall on Saturday was fishy, though not nearly as blatant as others we have seen from various players. I have also made a note of the picture. It clearly shows that Rooney was going down before contact.

    However, what it does also show is that Almunia was nowhere near the ball. Rooney was clever (unusually so) to get the penalty.

    What annoys me is that whenever you see 'experts' on TV, particularly over the weekend, they all talk about the Eduardo dive and then mention Drogba and Ronaldo. Why can't any of them call a spade a spade and throw Gerrard's name into it. Everyone bar Liverpool fans (and probably some of them as well) know that Gerrard dives and yet it is so rarely mentioned.

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  • 135. At 3:09pm on 01 Sep 2009, Brandyrecovery wrote:

    Tommy Onion: bang-on. If Almunia had pulled his hands away Rooney would still have gone down. He started falling before the contact...but in mind that's called good play, he induced the contact and won a penalty.

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  • 136. At 3:11pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    129. At 2:41pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyOnion wrote:
    128. At 2:39pm on 01 Sep 2009, scarolinared wrote:

    PS TommyOnion - there was rarely a more stonewall penalty than the foul on Rooney on Saturday. Even the Arsenal players (a more whingeing lot you would struggle to find) hardly raised a complaint.


    aaaaaahhhhhh but that was the beauty of it - only after seeing the behind the goal reply could you see it was a dive

    http://i26.tinypic.com/2lnv8nt.jpg

    -----------------------------------------------

    In that image Rooney is still on his feet, with the gift of Almunia's arms already in front of him ready to bring him down. From that point does he:

    a) keep going into Almunia and take the penalty that gets his team back into the game

    or

    b) try to vault Almunia and let the ball go for a goal kick?

    I'm not sure if Rooney could have avoided Almunia if he tried but can you name a striker in the premier league who would pick the 2nd option?

    Whoever painstakingly freeze framed that pic clearly hasa a lot of time on their hands though. Maybe a Scouser trying to keep themselves busy instead of think about their own club's start to the season?

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  • 137. At 3:16pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    whatbill

    The picture appears to me to show a trail behind Rooney's left leg where he is already dragging that foot along the ground. Also, I see that Rooney's left knee is almost on the ground already which suggests to me that he is already going down PRIOR to contact.

    The 'professionalism' or otherwise of players does not detract from the fact that Rooney fell before the contact, was not brought down and no amount of poking a finger at whoever produced the photo is going to change that.

    Are you suggesting that we, the paying fans, accept blatant cheating, even when dressed up smartly?

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  • 138. At 3:17pm on 01 Sep 2009, Brandyrecovery wrote:

    Blueburns - I wouldn't cite Gerrard as being a diver. Sure, he can go down theatrically - as can most of the top players. It's unfortunate but true that knowing how to fall down properly brings success on the pitch.

    It's true that the TV pundits are prety blinkered; when Owen dived in the box to win a penalty for England against Argentina it was completely glossed over but had that happened in reverse there would have been a (xenophobic) outrage.

    Ronaldo used to especially wind me up because he was happy to be aggresive and physical when he had control of the ball but as soon as he got tackled he would collapse and demand a free-kick. Unfortunately, due to Fergie's intimidation of referees, he'd usually get it.

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  • 139. At 3:20pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    136. At 3:11pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    In that image Rooney is still on his feet,

    ----------------------------------------------------------


    ermmm, no it shows he's on his way down before any contact was made


    a penalty 'won' at a moment when they were in dire need - v. clever

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  • 140. At 3:23pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    Brandyrecovery

    I wouldn't cite Gerrard as being a diver. Sure, he can go down theatrically - as can most of the top players. It's unfortunate but true that knowing how to fall down properly brings success on the pitch.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Gerrard is no more or less a diver than Drogba.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uVb2gbMtN3I

    I will add, not as a Chelsea fan but as an observer of the xenophobic issue you rightly mention, when Drogba supposedly admitted diving he said that sometimes he goes down easily and sometimes he stays up when he could easily go down. Most people crawled all over him for this and he got booed for ages. Eduardo is now receiving the same punishment and frankly, so should England players like Rooney, Gerrard and, if necessary, Joe Cole who himself has perfected something of a swan dive!

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  • 141. At 3:28pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    Mr Blueburns

    The picture appears to me to show a trail behind Rooney's left leg where he is already dragging that foot along the ground. Also, I see that Rooney's left knee is almost on the ground already which suggests to me that he is already going down PRIOR to contact.

    The 'professionalism' or otherwise of players does not detract from the fact that Rooney fell before the contact, was not brought down and no amount of poking a finger at whoever produced the photo is going to change that.

    Are you suggesting that we, the paying fans, accept blatant cheating, even when dressed up smartly?

    ----------------------------------------------

    He is starting to buckle in anticipation of the foul Almunia is clearly about to commit on him. If that is blantant cheating then you have accepted it (and a lot worse) on behalf of your own team many times in the past!

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  • 142. At 3:29pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    141. At 3:28pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    He is starting to buckle in anticipation of the foul





    LOL! or 'dive' as we call it in England

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  • 143. At 3:32pm on 01 Sep 2009, Liverpool Andy wrote:

    36. At 10:06am on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:
    32. At 09:57am on 01 Sep 2009, PulpGrape wrote:
    How can you imply that your prediction of Chelsea winning the league is true just because they've beaten Hull, Sunderland, Fulham and Burnley? Hardly Premiership winning victories. Laughable.

    _________________________________________________________________________

    Because they beat Hull, Sunderland, Fulham and Burnley. Comfortably. Laugh able if they'd have lost to oooh, I dunno, Villa and Spurs. Or Burnley.
    _________________________________________________________________________
    I'm guessing you didn't watch the Hull and Sunderland games Robbo? Maybe a bit of the highlights on MOTD?
    They needed a last minute winner to beat Hull and a lucky penalty to beat Sunderland.

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  • 144. At 3:37pm on 01 Sep 2009, adampsb wrote:

    I have a couple of areas of concern.

    Firstly JDR has obiously escaped from or avoided the dastardly trap I set for him since the last blog and has returned to blight us.

    Secondly as Utd have started better this season than last there is a real possibility that we will win the league, Fergie retire and Steve Bruce be appointed manager before Darren can claim his inheritance (before Keano gives him "THE STARE" and beats him to it.

    Thirdly why can't I just pick the teams I want relegated and discover some magical psychic power to relegate Liverpool, Portsmouth and Blackburn.

    and One final question to JDR. Why can't you call Robbo by his character name. He isn't writing it under his real name so why bother using it unless you had an alter ego and no-one would use it when you were a kid (something like grammarboy or pedanter etc) so therefore resolutely refuses to use anyone elses even when appropriate

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  • 145. At 3:37pm on 01 Sep 2009, TopClassCitizen - Its Hart-y Time wrote:

    A 100% record in all comps so far along with the status of conceeding no goals bodes well for us so far. However, Blackburn, Wolves, Crystal Palace and Portsmouth are not world-class sides. Our next two games (Arsenal at home and United away) will tell us far more about our season will pan out than the previous four. However 4 wins/4 and no goals conceeded, along with the fact that we have already equalled the amount of away wins we had all of last season makes me feel confident early on. As for the other clubs, Arsenal look fearsome and it is the Arsenal game that I fear more than the United one. United edged to victory on Saturday. They may not be as lucky v Chelsea and the game v Spurs will be very interesting. Their loss to Burnley showed how they missed Ronaldo and (to a certainly less extent) Tevez. Liverpool are looking very, very edgey and whilst they did probably deserve their victory over Bolton at the weekend, their losses at Spurs and at home to Villa were intruiging. Chelsea look unstoppable, but their start hasn't been exactly difficult. When they get to tougher games, we'll see how they fare. Finally, a word on spurs. They seemed excellent against Liverpool, Hull, West Ham and Doncaster, but only got a last ditch victory against a very good defensive Birmingham side. Their match against United will tell us alot about them.

    Well, that's my two cents.

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  • 146. At 3:38pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    whatbill

    No, I have not accepted it. I have been embarrassed about it and do not make excuses for it.

    It is the people who moan about diving but at the same time argue that it is part of the game that are the ones that allow the issue to carry on.

    Eduardo should be booed from the rafters for what he did. Wenger's defence of 'he received more abuse for this than support after his injury' and ' he was worried because of the way he was injured' are absolute cock and bull and the more us fans sit back passively rather than take these b.s. pedallers to task, the worse it will get.

    Look it really irks me. Cheating is cheating whether it's considered 'professional' or not or whether it benefits my team or not.

    Ok?

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  • 147. At 3:38pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Deja vu all over again (Yogi Bera). We're back on Robbo's previous Diving Me Crazy blog. The issue of whether Stevie G. is a diver or not was debated yesterday, there's countless compilations confirming the fact that he is indeed a diver. You Tube is the place to see it all and I'd defy anybody not wearing a red shirt with a yellow bird on it to refute the evidence! Yes, shocking revelation indeed but there you have it.

    If there's to be a clamp down on diving and simulation surely it means that Fergie sold the Gelled Tumbler at exactly the right time.

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  • 148. At 3:41pm on 01 Sep 2009, adampsb wrote:

    What about that Tom Daley bloke.. Saw a blatant dive from him the other week UEFA come on sort it.

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  • 149. At 3:42pm on 01 Sep 2009, ZEUSFC wrote:

    Roman Abramovich is Jewish, and wanted to buy tottenham for obvious reasons... the story goes that Abramovich was being flown west, following the thames by helecopter, before heading north towards white hart lane.
    they flew over chelsea, and he decided he liked convenience of the shorter flight from the city airport, and the closeness to the M4, and Heathrow...
    This has all been well documented in interviews in the Jewish press, as has his hatred of the anti-semetic chanting by chelsea "fans" whenever they play spurs... to the point where last year he was quoted as saying it made him want to "give up the game"

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  • 150. At 3:42pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    ahhhhh - adam

    that wasn't a dive - he merely buckled in anticipation of hitting the water

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  • 151. At 3:43pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    142. At 3:29pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyOnion wrote:
    141. At 3:28pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    He is starting to buckle in anticipation of the foul





    LOL! or 'dive' as we call it in England

    --------------------------------------------------

    Fine, call it a dive. As I mentioned before, by that interpretation every forward in the premiership does dive and the fans routinely accept it on behalf of their own clubs.

    So would you say it wasn't a penalty?








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  • 152. At 3:47pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    "So would you say it wasn't a penalty?"

    Of course he would.

    Unless St. Steven did it. Then it would have been a court case followed by a long sentence for Almunia.

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  • 153. At 3:49pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    151. At 3:43pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    Fine, call it a dive. As I mentioned before, by that interpretation every forward in the premiership does dive and the fans routinely accept it on behalf of their own clubs.

    So would you say it wasn't a penalty?
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    the fact it was a dive means that it wasn't a penalty but you can understand why the ref gave it (this wasn't a patch on the shocker that was the Howard Webb penno v Spurs last season) - in real time it looked like the keeper brought him down. In SloMo you can see Rooney goes to ground all on his own and hits the keeper on the way. As i said - v. clever.

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  • 154. At 3:50pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    149
    Zeus, thanks for the confirmation. I had no idea about his past interest in buying Spurs (we miss alot of the background story over here).

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  • 155. At 3:51pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    ZEUSFC

    This has all been well documented in interviews in the Jewish press, as has his hatred of the anti-semetic chanting by chelsea "fans" whenever they play spurs... to the point where last year he was quoted as saying it made him want to "give up the game"
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------
    I have never seen Abramovich quoted anywhere in over six years, apart from the foreward to the Chelsea centenary book.

    Have you got any links?

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  • 156. At 3:54pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    MrBlueBurns I have some quotes from Abramovich...


    "Honestly dear, even with all this money I still want you, I never went near her"

    "I know I left my wife for you but I swear that even when you get a bit older I will still love you"

    "Mr. Ambassador, with these Rocher you are really spoiling us"


    (Ok so the last one might have been made up)

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  • 157. At 3:55pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    GazUtd

    It was only the last one that had a ring of truth about it! :-)

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  • 158. At 3:55pm on 01 Sep 2009, NEARPOSTHEADER wrote:

    Robbo: it's high time a league of the 'touchiest' supporters was started - the ones who, with the mere whiff of criticism of their wonderfully loyal players, iconic manager or hallowed turf, they are up in arms and oh-so offended.

    Got to be Liverpool occupying the top spot, followed by Chelsea and Man U - what a coincidence, all successful teams. Sems a bit of failure teaches you humility.

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  • 159. At 3:56pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    the fact it was a dive means that it wasn't a penalty but you can understand why the ref gave it (this wasn't a patch on the shocker that was the Howard Webb penno v Spurs last season) - in real time it looked like the keeper brought him down. In SloMo you can see Rooney goes to ground all on his own and hits the keeper on the way. As i said - v. clever.

    -------------------------------------------------

    But whatever he does, he's hitting the keeper anyway. Rooney is running at full pelt, Alumina has missed the ball and is about to bring him down. He anticipates the contact because he knows its going to happen.

    Anyway, no comments at all from anyone about their own players doing the same I notice. Or their fans accepting it.

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  • 160. At 3:59pm on 01 Sep 2009, Riggadon wrote:

    Joe Davis (aka the cock-roach) needs to get out more.

    When I was a kid, I detested brussel sprouts. So guess what? I did'nt eat them. Later on in life, I developed a disliking for many things and guess what? I stay away from them and dont have much to do with any of them.

    Thats how I've managed to keep life fairly entertaining and me happy.

    You should try it, Mr Cock-Roach. You know? The whole, not bothering with things you dont like, bit? Perhaps then you wouldnt come across as such a mardy bore.

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  • 161. At 3:59pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    whatbill

    Anyway, no comments at all from anyone about their own players doing the same I notice. Or their fans accepting it.
    ----------------------------------------------------
    Then look harder! #146

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  • 162. At 4:02pm on 01 Sep 2009, Brandyrecovery wrote:

    I understand supporting a team. What I don't understand is why you would let that cloud your opinion to the extent where you claim that black is white.

    Of course it was a penalty. I don't think anyone has or would dispute that. We're just trying to analyse it a little deeper, and my personal opinion is that had Almunia somehow pulled his arms back at the last second such that there would have been no contact, then Rooney would still have gone down. Just like Eduardo vs Celtic.

    I'm not suggesting that Rooney is any better or worse then the next man. Blueburns is correct to say that if you don't like to see diving in the game then you should boo it, even if it is a player in your own team. Therefore it was ridiculous to hear Man Utd fans booing Eduardo on Sat...where have they been for the past 3 years? Though given the length of the journey to Old Trafford from Oxford / Surrey / wherever else outside Lancashire, they can probably only get there every once in a while.

    I'm against the use of TV technology during the course of a match but retrospective bans for players who blatently dive (such as Eboue in the last game) makes perfect sense and would surely start to clamp down on it.

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  • 163. At 4:02pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    I've freely admitted when a United player dived in the past and have even said Fergie should drop them for the next match because of it.

    I detest it.

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  • 164. At 4:03pm on 01 Sep 2009, JoeDavisRoach wrote:

    A couple of answers her to previous posts:

    1. GazUtd
    Despite what you may think, I do enjoy comedy. I wouldnt say I have a favourite comedian. I enjoyed shows such as the Office, Extras (Gervais is generally good), films like Office Space and Dumb and Dumber. Strange as it may seem, its possible to have a sense of humour and not find the stereotyped and predictable views of a fictional northerner side-splittingly funny.

    2.adampsb
    I am not obsessed with "Robbo" having perfect grammer - as has been pointed out many times, I write these posts quickly and dont pay huge credence as to the spelling or grammer on them. I am concerned with "Robbos" blog content. The substance and style as opposed to spelling and grammer. And "Robbo"/Niall is being paid (I assume) to write this so comparing someone who is posting a reply/opinion to a blog with someone whos job it is to write it is a bit far fetched. Its like asking a tax advisor to do your tax and complaining if he does a bad job. Do you really expect to get a "well can you do it any better?" reply.

    3.adampsb
    As a grown man I find adressing a serious post to a fictional character a bit childish. If I was writing to Harrison Ford or Bruce Willis Im not going to address them as Indiana Jones or John McClane unless I dont know their real names.

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  • 165. At 4:04pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    "Rooney is running at full pelt, "

    except he's not - he's diving

    had he continued to run at full pelt Almunia may well have brought him down anyway but Rooney got his dive in first

    ergo - it was a dive



    and i wasn't talking about players from other clubs - but yes, other players do dive and i'd like that the FA/UEFA/FIFA make the same example of those players that they have done of Eduardo this week. In fact i'd wish they'd done this years ago.

    I suspect however, that they wont.

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  • 166. At 4:04pm on 01 Sep 2009, adampsb wrote:

    #160

    To be honest I never liked Brussell Sprouts either, tehy look nasty, feel nasty and taste even worse.

    One of my mates was called Russell and he used to get teased mercilessly about being served with Turky & trimmings at Christmas.

    Why can't JDR just pretend he secretlly likes Robbo and actually comment on football or join Mihir Bose and make like a tree and leave

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  • 167. At 4:09pm on 01 Sep 2009, adampsb wrote:

    JDR Wrote

    I do enjoy comedy. I wouldnt say I have a favourite comedian. I enjoyed shows such as the Office, Extras (Gervais is generally good), films like Office Space and Dumb and Dumber.

    You call these comedy?

    I was expecting something good like Blackadder, the young ones, only fools & horses, time gentleman please or something inventive unless slapstick aimed at the lowest intellectual denominator is genuinely what you enjoy.

    as for your final point if one was writing to Bruce Willis yes you would say Dear Bruce or Dear Mr Willis (or Dear Walter if you are his mum) as that is who you are writing to. This is a Robbo blog written as Robbo and Robbo is who you are replying to. If he wanted to be replied to as Niall he wouldn't have invented Robbo

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  • 168. At 4:10pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    why doesn't Niall change his name by deed poll to Robbo Robson ?

    problem solved.

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  • 169. At 4:11pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    #146 - fair enough. Although I notice you prefer to mention Arsenal than Chelsea's own record, which over the last few years is probably worse. You may not excuse it but I've not noticed you critise Chelsea for it either.

    Diving is undoubtably a form of cheating and should be got rid of. But when Ronaldo was with us (and I did hate his diving), he also got fouled and kicked repeatedly which was seemingly fine and never attracted any blogs. If you're a forward you're expected to put up with the fouls, the kicks, the strong arm tactics, the holding, the blocking, because its part of the game. Why is that not cheating?

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  • 170. At 4:14pm on 01 Sep 2009, adampsb wrote:

    Look People Dive it happens.

    Can't we move past this and talk about something that matters like: -
    JDR's comedy preferences,
    Why people actually eat Brussell Sprouts,
    Where is my psychic power to relegate Liverpool,
    Were the Mayans right about the world ending in 2012
    Why did Douglas Adams feel that 42 rather than 43 was teh answer to life, the universe, everything and why Emile Heskey falls over when you breathe on him

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  • 171. At 4:16pm on 01 Sep 2009, Coweslepe wrote:

    'It's like an Archbishop blaming Jesus for the state of Christianity' is classic Robbo, but I'm wondering whether you're still so keen on giving Almunia a passport? I was at Heathrow the other day and was thinking we should just give them all a nice British passport. After all, when a person like you advocates such measures, any sense of actually being English and that meaning anything at all is well on its way to being dead and gone, though the Ashes might still suggest otherwise.

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  • 172. At 4:17pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    #169 whatbill

    The tactics you mention in your last paragraph are cheating and free kicks were awarded, and if they weren't, they should have been.

    I mentioned Drogba and Joe Cole at #140.

    p.s. Blackadder and The Simpsons are the best comedy, ever. That doesn't need debating so we can now get back to the issue of diving and Chelsea winning the league.

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  • 173. At 4:17pm on 01 Sep 2009, JoeDavisRoach wrote:

    JDR Wrote

    I do enjoy comedy. I wouldnt say I have a favourite comedian. I enjoyed shows such as the Office, Extras (Gervais is generally good), films like Office Space and Dumb and Dumber.

    You call these comedy?
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Actually no, I used a range of different comedys - from the basic humour of Dumb and Dumber to the more subtle humour of a show like the Office to highlight that there are different types of comedy that can be good. For what its worth I like Blackadder aswell but wasnt inclined to post every single comedy and comedian I liked. And yes, I believe that were you to look these up you would find them in the comedy genre.

    as for your final point if one was writing to Bruce Willis yes you would say Dear Bruce or Dear Mr Willis (or Dear Walter if you are his mum) as that is who you are writing to. This is a Robbo blog written as Robbo and Robbo is who you are replying to. If he wanted to be replied to as Niall he wouldn't have invented Robbo
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Not really, no.

    Niall has created the fictional "Robbo" as a means to present a stereotyped outlook on sport and so people realise that the blog is an attempt at a humorous approach as opposed to his own actual views. My issue isnt with the fictional "Robbo" - its with his creator. So in that regard I feel its more appropriate to address Niall.

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  • 174. At 4:18pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    I fully expect to be ridiculed for this but anyone who found The Office even remotely funny should have a long hard look at themselves.

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  • 175. At 4:24pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    #170 - fair enough:

    1) Its an obvious answer but I'm not sure you can knock JDR for liking the Office. Although I think he secretly likes two pints of lager and a packet of crisps.

    2) An urge to conform.

    3) I wish I could help you with that one.

    4) If Fergie retires in 2012 then yes.

    5) 42 is the number of trophies fergie will win before he retires.

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  • 176. At 4:25pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    GazUtd

    Whilst popularity and commercial success are not the same as quality, I would say that The Office is very entertaining indeed. Not always laugh out loud funny, because it doesn't need to be, but quality, subtle comedy.

    The sort of subtlety that something like Lead Balloon has.

    Hang on, I am way off topic here.......

    p.s. Chelsea to win the league.

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  • 177. At 4:29pm on 01 Sep 2009, arundini wrote:

    WhatBill - all those things are obviously cheating too. In an ideal world the ref would see and give them all. Though with the amount of shirt-pulling and wrestling at corners (pet hate of mine) most games would be one long free kick !!

    Fact - almost all players dive or go to ground easily if its to their advantage. Question is what to do about it ? Some do look like genuine fouls in real time which is all the ref sees - so instant video replays for the 4th official ?

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  • 178. At 4:31pm on 01 Sep 2009, Starburst_995 wrote:

    I wouldn't worry Gaz ... I found The Office to be a boring sack of crap myself.

    Blackadder on the other hand ...

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  • 179. At 4:39pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    The Office was a big hit in the States so it's probably crap. Steptoe & Son is my all time favourite but Blackadder was fantastic too. It's at this point that Robbo jumps in to inform us he was lead writer on all JDR's favourite shows!

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  • 180. At 4:47pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    I sese Eduardo has just been banned for 2 games.

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  • 181. At 4:49pm on 01 Sep 2009, adampsb wrote:

    My issue isnt with the fictional "Robbo" - its with his creator. So in that regard I feel its more appropriate to address Niall.


    Why not write to him in private by post about that and just put comments on this blog that are more in keeping with it's spirit. We all appreciate these are stereotyped views but often exaggerating something is the best way to satirise it.


    Re Blackadder I still love that episode when he is on trial for shooting teh pigeon and he thinks that an impartial judge will let him off a=nd Melchitt walks into the room and he just buries his head in his hands and says "I'm dead" especially after Melchitt refers to him as Captain Edmund Blackadder also known as the FLANDERS PIGEON MURDERER

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  • 182. At 4:56pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    On the one hand i salute UEFA for banning Eduardo for 2 games BUT

    it does seem bizarre that an offence, which if seen at the time by the match officials would have warranted a yellow card gets upgraded to the equivalent of 6 yellow cards by UEFA

    Interesting to see what happens to Eboue/McGeady following their dives this weekend

    Also interesting to see what UEFA do the next time a dive isn't spotted by the ref

    If only they'd started this a few years back - Ronaldo would be banned until 2014

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  • 183. At 4:59pm on 01 Sep 2009, adampsb wrote:

    As would Drogba and a few others. They can't do anything about the other 2 as they were seen and punished with a yellow card. As per the Eduardo ban I guess they see it as a Red card offence but yes it is a bit disproportionate to turn 1 yellow card into 4

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  • 184. At 5:03pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    I think that it is possible to go down in the box and for it to be neither a foul nor a dive.

    I have seen players booked before when they haven't even claimed for a penalty!

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  • 185. At 5:04pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    "I think that it is possible to go down in the box and for it to be neither a foul nor a dive."

    It is indeed.

    But only when she's made a really nice dinner.

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  • 186. At 5:05pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    GazUtd

    Plenty of gravy eh?

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  • 187. At 5:05pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Things are looking up, Bolton have borrowed a striker. He averages a goal every three and a half games which will double the output of the entire team! On the downside he's a Croatian International and if he doesn't break a leg against England he'll probably be banned for 6 months for diving through the arch.

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  • 188. At 5:06pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    Just going back a bit, to that picture of Rooney going down prior to contact, could it be argued that he fouled Almunia by falling into him?

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  • 189. At 5:08pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    No big transfers to report then (with Bolton's new saviour excepted of course).

    Anyone know if the JDR one went through in time?

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  • 190. At 5:08pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    adam -

    that's the thing though - it isn't a red card offence. So i don't see how they can pretend it was retrospectively.

    Has there been any announcement from UEFA on this and what the rules are now regarding 'simulation' ?

    Fully expecting a successful Arsenal appeal against this, btw.

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  • 191. At 5:10pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    I suppose Eduardo dived to win a penalty whereas Eboue dived to win a free kick - a professional foul gets a sending off so diving for a penalty should count the same.

    While he deserves it, it does seem he's a victim of circumstances. Many equally bad and more influential dives went unpunished last season and will happen again this year. I wonder what the next hot topic will be...

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  • 192. At 5:15pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    Rooney's impending 2 game ban......

    ;o)

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  • 193. At 5:23pm on 01 Sep 2009, Jimmy2Times wrote:

    @143
    Not quite sure where u got "lucky penalty" to beat sunderland from?!?!
    We absolutely battered them, add to that probably the best team goal you'll see this season to wrap the points up. Time for a rethink there pal. Get your own house in order. Another year with no premier league title coming your way. TW*T

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  • 194. At 5:26pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    188. At 5:06pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:
    Just going back a bit, to that picture of Rooney going down prior to contact, could it be argued that he fouled Almunia by falling into him?

    --------------------------------------------------

    Maybe ban him twice, once for diving and once for the foul. And then double it because he's so good. I think that proably fairest.

    I think this is all we have to talk about until the England game on friday. Or will we be rescued by a Stevie G groin strain?

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  • 195. At 5:28pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    whatbill

    A groin strain that will heal between the friendly and the competitive match perhaps?

    :-)

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  • 196. At 5:29pm on 01 Sep 2009, Auqakuh wrote:

    @180 "I sese Eduardo has just been banned for 2 games"

    Are you from New York?

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  • 197. At 5:32pm on 01 Sep 2009, Jimmy2Times wrote:

    just to confirm the legality of my statement of the team goal v sunderland here it is in its entirety

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-elRdp2P_W0

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  • 198. At 5:32pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    MrBlueBurns

    Almost certainly. The bigger the game, the faster he heals!

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  • 199. At 5:35pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    196. At 5:29pm on 01 Sep 2009, Auqakuh wrote:
    @180 "I sese Eduardo has just been banned for 2 games"

    Are you from New York?

    ------------------------------------

    As a United fan I'd love to say yes, but sadly not.

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  • 200. At 5:35pm on 01 Sep 2009, Brandyrecovery wrote:

    What Bill. How many friendly matches did Giggs play for Wales during his 10-year international career?

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  • 201. At 5:35pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    a touch rich for Man U fans to be criticising players from other clubs for their commitment to an international cause

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  • 202. At 5:38pm on 01 Sep 2009, Benny-Oun wrote:

    Really? You're really deciding whether or not your predictions have come true after 4 games? Sums up the media at the moment I suppose, ridiculously jerky knees.

    Give it 'til Christmas at the very least, to decide whether or not Liverpool won't win the league or Arsenal will be fantastic.

    By the way, Rafa's criticism of Gerrard worked well did it not? Maybe you should try and have a decent look and see that Rafa knows what he's doing. The constant criticism of him from people like yourselves is incredibly short-sighted and disrespectful. Before Rafa, nobody spoke about the Big 4, it was the Big 3 (Man Utd, Arsenal & Chelsea). He's turned our weak team into one of the most feared in Europe and absolute, genuine title contenders. You may like to brag about how you say it how you see it, but there should be some justification behind your opinions and certainly as far as Rafa is concerned, you have none.

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  • 203. At 5:41pm on 01 Sep 2009, Stephen wrote:

    JoeDavisRoach, you're obviously a fictional character too, nobody really talks like that

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  • 204. At 5:42pm on 01 Sep 2009, whatbill wrote:

    TommyOnions

    Clearly - but having discussed diving with scousers all afternoon, without referring to Stevie G, I felt he was due a mention.

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  • 205. At 5:48pm on 01 Sep 2009, lfcashtonlfc wrote:

    I'm sorry robbo but how can you say benitez hasnt bought anything to improve liverpool, can you name any other full-backs who provide 2 goals in 4 games, plus 2 assists and a hand in many of the other goals scored so far by their team this season? Plus i think you have also conveniently forgotten about our 20 million siging of Aquilani from Roma, admittedly i havent seen alot of him apart from youtube videos, which in fairness could make some of the guys in my town's local football team look quality...but to write him off before you have even seen him play in the premier league, as you did say "And Rafa's not bought a damn thing that's going to make any difference" - is just rather naive in my point of view....

    But apart from that it was a rather entertaining blog. Well done.

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  • 206. At 5:49pm on 01 Sep 2009, Ireland Brew wrote:

    83. At 12:26pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:

    "I hope you get the drift."

    Yes we do. You can't spell.

    I had to laugh with incredulity at this. Coincedence, anyone? Epitomy, even.

    Get a dictionary or at least learn how to use a spellchecker before you comment on other peoples spelling.

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  • 207. At 5:51pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    epitome

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  • 208. At 5:52pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    So Irn_bru you cannot criticise someone if you yourself are guilty of being the same thing then?

    By your logic I hope you have never called anyone an a-hole.

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  • 209. At 5:56pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    oh and coincidence ! LOL!

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  • 210. At 5:58pm on 01 Sep 2009, Brandyrecovery wrote:

    Liverpool fans: yes, Johnson has started the season on fire (attacking wise) but surely you must realise that you look lightweight up front. Benitez should have bought someone to give them more options: Ideally he should have gone for Tevez, but even someone like Santa Cruz who would probably be ok to be on the bench for some games, but could still score 10 - 15 goals a season.

    Alonso will be a huge loss. The games Liverpool won without Torres / Gerrard was mainly due to Alonso carrying the team. I can't give an opinion on Aqualina but obviously he must be considered something of a gamble because a) his injury record and b) he's never played in the premiership before.

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  • 211. At 5:59pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    oh and epitome!

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  • 212. At 6:00pm on 01 Sep 2009, camobogie1 wrote:

    Middlesbrough won't come up, I don't think. It will be West Brom, Cardiff/Sheff Utd/Coventry and Newcastle. Although I would love QPR to be promoted.
    Premier League in my eyes:

    Chelsea
    Man Utd
    Man City
    Liverpool
    Tottenham
    Arsenal
    West Ham
    Fulham
    Everton
    Aston Villa
    Stoke
    Burnley
    Sunderland
    Wigan
    Hull
    Blackburn
    Wolves
    Bolton
    Birmingham
    Portsmouth

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  • 213. At 6:00pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    In fact, it might just be the epitome of coincidence.

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  • 214. At 6:04pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Noooo Camobogie, we've just signed a new Croatian wonder striker, surely this deserves your consideration? Please move us up a spot from 18th.

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  • 215. At 6:08pm on 01 Sep 2009, ron_will_be_missed wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 216. At 6:08pm on 01 Sep 2009, ron_will_be_missed wrote:

    still* in my pocket

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  • 217. At 6:18pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    ron will be missed, with comments like that ron will be missed will be modded.

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  • 218. At 6:20pm on 01 Sep 2009, ron_will_be_missed wrote:

    oh come on Trott,

    i thought we were from same county?

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  • 219. At 6:26pm on 01 Sep 2009, AlanPL1 wrote:

    #40 Lucas actually got a work permit straight away as he holds an italian
    passport, like a few young south americans at Liverpool. Leto's must have been a really bad one as his was rejected by Immigration & Passports eventually.

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  • 220. At 6:28pm on 01 Sep 2009, LincsKopite wrote:

    Your comments about Liverpool were quite humorous (coming from a fan myself), although, about Gerrard and Torres, not quite true. As someone said earlier, we beat Chelsea and Man U without those two. Thing is wirh us, we could thrash Man U on their own turf but lose to Villa at home. I'm not giving up hope of winning the title (anything can happen), but our consistency needs to be sorted out for the rest of the season.

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  • 221. At 6:30pm on 01 Sep 2009, DennyCraneWHU wrote:

    Aaaaaaaaah Robbo, football is your forte.

    But you got it wrong about Arsene's sending off. Not for bottle-kicking but for nagging and nagging the fourth official non-stop for ninety minutes, in a manner similar to being attacked by a Tyrannosaurus, and for kicking the water bottle. And who amongst us cannot savour the warm inner glow felt by the fourth official getting his own back on the constant natterer?

    And didn't Arsene enjoy hogging the spotlight in the stands.

    An enjoyable afternoon was had by all. Well, nearly all.

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  • 222. At 6:32pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    218 RWBM - it wasn't me but it was easily predicted!

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  • 223. At 6:33pm on 01 Sep 2009, ron_will_be_missed wrote:

    oops.. suddenly someone stole my credit card...

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  • 224. At 6:36pm on 01 Sep 2009, Singh_is_King_007 wrote:

    shredder91 I agree with you. as a liverpool fan I think jamie carragher is declining as a cb. i saw the signs last year when he was beaten for pace countless times and he has not got off to a good start this season either.

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  • 225. At 6:38pm on 01 Sep 2009, OneLeagueTitlePlease wrote:

    #193

    Think your getting a bit excited calling that the best team goal all season. It was decent but i'd like to think someone could muster up a better one.
    Saying that you were clearly the better side so don't know what the lucky penalty nonsense is about.

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  • 226. At 6:40pm on 01 Sep 2009, camobogie1 wrote:

    TrotterUSA, thats what Blackburn thought when they bought that Croatian player that was very dissappointing on his debut a couple of weeks ago. I'm SORRY!

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  • 227. At 6:43pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    We've only borrowed ours so he'll be doing his best to get a permanent deal worth over 3 figures a week.

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  • 228. At 6:55pm on 01 Sep 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    ADMISSION: i've followed JDRs example and created another account under TommyOnion - just to see if i'd feel high and mighty like him/her.

    seriously though - it's reassuring to see some intelligent life return to Planet Robbo....BlueBurns, GrandMrP, bluenose etc... thank you for talking some sense in here.

    but should we be worried about GazU? clearly there are some schizoid tendencies to be seen in his few dozen posts... how can one mind come up with the brilliant McNulty/JDR transfer idea, yet talk utter nonsense about Arsenal and The Office? quite unsettling.

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  • 229. At 6:56pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    I'm really a woman Denis.

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  • 230. At 7:08pm on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    79. At 12:13pm on 01 Sep 2009, Auqakuh wrote:
    Er, I do have one complaint though.

    V justified complaint!

    I've added an 'and' and an 'is'

    "well you know when you're dumped by a cracking looking lass and your best mate Colin (plump and good at pub quizzes) takes you down the boozer to cheer you up and all you can do is look at this well-meaning lummox... and that lass's face just comes into greater focus and all you can hear is Jim Bowen in your head yelling 'Here's what you could've won!'? That's Valencia at United."


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  • 231. At 7:10pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Looking again at the Wenger picture above, is that Fergie and his side-kick in the lower left corner? Looks like they have a spare seat that they could have offered the poor chap!

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  • 232. At 7:11pm on 01 Sep 2009, sirchelseajackiechan - Schweni come to Chelsea wrote:

    Drogs to win the golden boot

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  • 233. At 7:31pm on 01 Sep 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    but should we be worried about GazU? clearly there are some schizoid tendencies to be seen in his few dozen posts... how can one mind come up with the brilliant McNulty/JDR transfer idea, yet talk utter nonsense about Arsenal and The Office? quite unsettling.

    -------------------------------------------
    229. At 6:56pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:

    I'm really a woman Denis.

    -------------------------------------------

    i'm picturing Joan Rivers, mixed with a bit of Tracy Ullman and Rosie O'Donnell.
    ugh.

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  • 234. At 7:35pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    I seen that in a movie once! It wasn't pretty.

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  • 235. At 7:49pm on 01 Sep 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    my apologies, Madame... i crossed the line, i'm afraid.

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  • 236. At 7:52pm on 01 Sep 2009, Malicious_Whistle wrote:

    To TommyOnion:

    Its sad to see folks' objectivity blinded by rabid hatred of rival teams.

    Great blog Robbo. I thought that photo of Drogba and Anelka's love-in was a beauty. Anelka did seems more restrained than the grinning Drogbe though.

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  • 237. At 8:03pm on 01 Sep 2009, AaronpoolFC wrote:

    I've spent quite a lot of time reading the various bbc pundit blogs but when I wanted to make a comment I found myself too lazy to sign up.

    But dear robbo you've angered me enough to motivate me, first of all you opened with

    "With a pause in the action it's the perfect time to draw way too many conclusions from way too few matches and I'm just the man."

    you then stated

    "Johnson's done ok"

    Surely the conclusion you should draw from Johnson's four (few) matches is that he has done fantastic, 2 goals, 1 assist, and won Liverpool a penalty. That is a goal a game essentially.

    I agree that Liverpool have looked disappointing but I feel its incredibly unfair that you label Johnson's start as ok.

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  • 238. At 8:05pm on 01 Sep 2009, Atomicblade wrote:

    Liverpool's problems would all be over if Gerrard and Torres could grow decent 'taches.

    A nice tight perm wouldn't go amiss.

    Then Glen Johnson could get some kenny style buttock implants

    Now there's a team to frighten the forrest!

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  • 239. At 8:05pm on 01 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    the picture of Rooney diving before any contact is there for all to see - if you refuse to see it, or accuse others of impartiality because they bring it up it says a lot more about you than it does about me.

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  • 240. At 8:12pm on 01 Sep 2009, Gunishment wrote:

    RE #54

    United scored more goals than Arsenal? I beg to differ - own goal admittedly.

    Seriously though, I think apart from the scoreline, we'd be happier with the performance. If I was a United fan, I'd be worried about the long campaign. We're certainly not the pushovers you all expected pre-season.

    As for the Arshavin's disallowed penalty. How anyone can say it has no relevance is beyond me. If Fletcher had been booked, he'd have been more cautious in his tackles which were instrumental in disrupting Arsenal's flowing football. So, these decisions have a fundamental effect on the outcome of games.

    But, hey ... spilled milk, i guess. Like everyone says ... early days yet.

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  • 241. At 8:13pm on 01 Sep 2009, JoeDavisRoach wrote:

    AaronpoolFC wrote:
    I've spent quite a lot of time reading the various bbc pundit blogs but when I wanted to make a comment I found myself too lazy to sign up.

    But dear robbo you've angered me enough to motivate me
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Get used to it

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  • 242. At 8:19pm on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    Yes Rooney's on his way down... in the full knowledge that the Spanglish keeper will be sliding into him a nanosecond later. It's a penalty. Just a not very satisfactory one.

    I think it may be summat to do with the flinging of the arms skyward in anticipation of contact. The Platoon Poster Pose. Too much of that and it looks a tad fey. Rooney managed to keep it a bit more in the realms of a possible tumble, rather than one straight out of Billy Smart's Circus. But you don't like the buying of a pen, contact or not, and no self-respecting neutral could not agree with the fact that he was 'looking for it'.

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  • 243. At 8:20pm on 01 Sep 2009, Yo_humps wrote:

    Poor form.
    I have to say this blog is an eyesore.
    I don't particularly dislike your blog but your constant ramblings about benitez and Gerrard without actually knowing anything, really gets my goat.
    So do you watch all the liverpool games then?And not just the MOTD highlights?
    If you did then you would know what Benitez was on about.
    Anyway, I merely expect a bit less melodramatic blogs form a BBC Blogger.
    Its god damn BBC for heck's sake!
    You know how amusing the United or any other fans will find your 'quip' about benitez and your pathetic Jesus analogy.
    That's the thing.You don't care what any one who may be offended by this might think.You cater to the 'demands' of the majority albeit by sacrifising basic rules of ubiased reporting.
    Oh wait!
    This isn't unbiased reporting/blogging, is it?

    It would be a bit much to ask you to stop posting but I make it a point to read most of the BBC's football blogs.
    Maybe I'll need to quit reading this one unless you show a bit more sensitivity towards fans of clubs other than the one you support.
    And yes, a bit more respect to the man who has clearly done MUCH more in life than you have and probably knows much more about football then you and your bluebell simpletons collectively do.
    Rafael Benitez.
    By the way Robbo, he's the same manager who took his team to the second place finish in the league last season on a smaller budget to both United and Chelsea.And that too WITHOUT Gerrard or Torres for a major chunk of the season.There goes your not so clever line about "blah blah..liverpool a dull boy(Its a freakin football club mate and not a circus, like your beloved Boro)
    AS far as your predictions go(I really shouldn't be arsed), I'm sure you said the same things when Liverpool were drawing games in during december/jan last year.So that tells me what worth your predictions really are.
    But hey, they solve your purpose though.Getting the hits isn't it?
    I'm sure the supporters of other clubs would be rolling on the floor, lauging at your digs at Rafa and the club.
    Take pride and keep going strong until they get bored or BBC realise the glaringly obvious.This is in no way related to proper reporting that the BBC *should* should aspire to do.
    This can be instead be placed anywhere in the bloated blogoshpere where the interested can take part and laugh at its semi-football, semi-nonsense content.
    Thank you.
    (I do realise the kind of replies I might get, if at all this is published.But I hope the chief editor and especially 'Robbo' get to read this)

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  • 244. At 8:22pm on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    #237

    All right, all right. 'OK' is high praise from the average Teessider but Johnson has done very well indeed and Benitez's track record as a very poor picker of wide players has been completely trashed.

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  • 245. At 8:27pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    I wouldn't exactly say having a comment is "published" here chief.

    Nevertheless - SAVE RAFA!


    Robbo I have a suggestion - In the spirit of that German broadcaster who spoofed the Michael Jackson is alive video to see the internet reaction I suggest this.

    For the next 5/6 weeks you say something disparaging (yes I know you don't really say anything disparaging but bear with me) about a particular team. 1 team per week.

    Then we count up all the comments along the lines of "you're a ****" from that teams set of supporters, you know the moaning about unbiased stuff.

    Whoever has the biggest set of moaners and whingers wins a prize. Oh I don't know, let's say a night out with JDR. 2nd prize wins 2 nights out with him.

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  • 246. At 8:32pm on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    #243
    Now I don't really show much respect to any clubs. Least of all my own. But maybe being a boro fan makes you horribly realistic. This blog really doesn't set out to offend anyone particularly. I do reckon Benitez needs to win the Prem this season to justify his position there. And so far, so not very good. I was reckoning on them being top three behind Chelsea and Man U before the season began and I reckon that'll be pretty much spot on. As for the Jesus comparison, I've no doubt that Gerrard has single-handedly turned round more of 'Pool's important matches than any other player and Rafa pretty much acknowledged that he is vital to their making progress this season. I just put meself in SG's shoes and wondered whether I might be a bit piqued by Benitez picking him out as someone who needed to up his game.
    Finally, of course Rafa knows more about footy than me - or any other poster on this blog. Doesn't alter the fact that we canall express our opinions on it anyway. Just as you can slate the blog itself. Just ask JDR how mcuh fun that can be.

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  • 247. At 8:33pm on 01 Sep 2009, supadave79 wrote:

    "If it wasn't for Gerrard, Benitez would've been out of a job long ago. It's like an Archbishop blaming Jesus for the state of Christianity."

    SO then what's Garath Southgate's excuse for still being in a job?

    Have you ever wrote anything positive about Liverpool?

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  • 248. At 8:35pm on 01 Sep 2009, WEPAYTHELICENCEFEE wrote:

    "Other managers be warned: no kicking of plastic bottles, no flicking of laggy bands, no spud guns, no paper aeroplanes or you go and sit in the corner with a bin on your head."

    And no persistent contempt towards officials.

    This fact is consistently ignored by the pro-Arsenal/Arsene Wenger media.

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  • 249. At 8:42pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    oh no....the comparison spending charts will be getting dusted off now.

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  • 250. At 8:45pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:



    Then it'll be the mines bigger than yours, closely followed by the my dad can have your dad.

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  • 251. At 8:46pm on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    #247
    Oh yes! Liverpool 3 AC Milan 3. Brilliant game. Fantastic, potty result. Jerzy Dudek, eh? Always went for Gerrard ahead of Lampard in England team. And keep this between ourselves right but, I'd rather they bagged the title than CFC and MUFC - I just don't think it's going to happen.

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  • 252. At 8:46pm on 01 Sep 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    "the pro-Arsenal/Arsene Wenger media"

    ------------------------------------------

    you must mean Wenger's hometown weekly.


    and TommyOnion - could you stop posting my thoughts, please? i'm starting to get freaked out.

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  • 253. At 8:47pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    Right! That's it!

    Anyone got JDR's number, I want to be in his gang!

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  • 254. At 8:48pm on 01 Sep 2009, bluenose in salisbury wrote:

    #42. Ferguson didn't earn the money to spend, it came as no coincidence that money arrived at Old Trafford at the same time as Sky entered the big time of the Premiership. As for the traunche of players you bleated out, Giggs and Scholes I'll give you but as for the rest, there not fit to lace Fabregas' boots and that includes that money making machine called Beckham. I've been searching through that list of yours and couldn't seem to see the likes of Veron, Gjemba-Gjemba and Kleberson in your list. Prime examples of big money failures that came to OT and left, you won't find too many of those from Wengers past.

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  • 255. At 8:49pm on 01 Sep 2009, kpthegreat wrote:

    Robo, whats your thoughts on the other end of the table?. How do you think the bottom will shape up?.

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  • 256. At 9:01pm on 01 Sep 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    ...and speaking of freaked out - i've been conducting an experiment (really) to see what is acceptable to post on mcnumpties blog versus Robbo's.

    for instance, my nickname for big Phil gets modded on his blog, but not here.

    anyhow, i was just putting the finishing touches on another successful argument on said blog by closing with "Wayne Rooney cheated..."

    turns out, those words were censored as well! really - this is not a wind-up, i reapeat: this is NOT a wind-up!

    Robbo, old cyber-pal: i leave it to you to talk me down from the conspiracy ledge...

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  • 257. At 9:02pm on 01 Sep 2009, AaronpoolFC wrote:

    Thank you Robbo, sorry if I was naive to your regional ways of complimenting it must be a very pessimistic place this tesside.

    as for 244 I think you've taken this article a little too seriously. I think you shouldn't collectively perceive the media as one unit. The bbc does have a duty to produce unbiased news but this blog is not news. The fact that it is a 'blog' makes it an opinion piece. And naturally that can end up poking fun at someone which always happens in football banter.

    Just be calm and confident in the fact that as Liverpool fans we do still stand a good chance of watching our team triumph. And we can remember blogs like this and laugh. In the style of the man we worship (rafa).

    Manchester United have lost a lot of goals assists and a superior threat.. FACT

    Arsenal look good, pacey, creative, young and Arshavin is a dream but this is a familiar story from the past few seasons. Their inexperience hits them hard when the lose.. FACT

    Chelsea look dam good and more than likely will collect the title but it is an old squad. Their regained dominance will be short term. The recession has hit Chelski.. Fact

    Man City.. I am a little scared..especially come the next two transfer windows. . FACT

    But if Real Madrid and Man city begin to dominate the game could it signal the end of football if money wins? Everyone knows there is no point in playing Championship or Football Manager games if you're just going to use the money cheat. FACT

    Tottenham lack the depth to crack the top four, the back line is riddled with insecurity. Modric's broken leg raises questions and I do believe they're down a russian striker now. Although the krancjar buy was a positive move towards the squads development as a whole.. FACT (I guess)

    and finally Liverpool what I believe we need to do is except our midfield is extremely weak now. Drop the current 4-2-3-1 system and play a more traditional 4-4-2 placing Gerrard back in the midfield. Kuyt is itching to score alot of goals, its always his little face I see in the highlights getting on the end of crosses he is a natural centre forward and that's where he should be played. Kuyt was on fire for a period last season and that was when he was played in a more central role to cover torres's absence. Possibly restore the 4-2-3-1 system when aquilani is fit but the midfield is lacking vision, strength, creativity, all stuff that gerrard can restore. Xabi supplied gerrard who then supplied torres, theres no point leaving the latter two relying on lucas.

    That was along comment


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  • 258. At 9:03pm on 01 Sep 2009, Tibyye wrote:

    Hey Robbo, Chelsea to win the Premier League. Did Nostradamus talk to you last night or are you a specialist in crystal ball gazing?

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  • 259. At 9:10pm on 01 Sep 2009, JoeDavisRoach wrote:

    246. At 8:32pm on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    "Robbo"/Niall

    I dont deliberately log on and slate your blogs for my own amusement - I can assure you most of your blogs have done all but ammuse me! I merely state a point of view and one which I dont think is unreasonable.

    I dont take issue with factual inacuracies or belittling of teams, players and fans in your blog because I am well aware that is not the intent of the blog. The blog is designed to amuse and offer a stereotyped view take on sport - herein lies its chief failing. It isnt really amusing, often seems to have no point to it other than hold together a series of poor one liners or cliched observations and above all it is highly repetitive.

    However this edition today showed some signs of improvement - for starters the blog actually had some kind of point to make i.e substance. Obviously you resorted to the jaded fictional northerners take on sport but there was less of the "gelled tumblers", "blue bell" and "any roads" which have plagued your blogs to the point of mass overkill.

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  • 260. At 9:13pm on 01 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    We were all disconsolate back in the mid 50's and then along came Nat Lofthouse and we won the cup in '58. Prior to that we had a good run in the early 20's. Sometimes it takes a while but don't worry Rafa's lads, it'll be your turn soon enough and if it's not on your shift the grandkids will still enjoy it. On a different but related matter, Alonso seems to have slotted in nicely at his new home!

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  • 261. At 9:14pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    It's my job to be repetitive. My job. My Job. Repetitiveness is my job.

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  • 262. At 9:37pm on 01 Sep 2009, Ireland Brew wrote:

    208. At 5:52pm on 01 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:

    So Irn_bru you cannot criticise someone if you yourself are guilty of being the same thing then?

    By your logic I hope you have never called anyone an a-hol
    _________________________________________________________

    Of course you can do it. It is called hypocrisy. Look it up in your non-existent dictionary.
    Also, would you mind not posting any more of your "humorous" comments. I know you love Robbo and, attempting to ape him is the sincerest form of flattery but, seriously, you are embarrassing yourself. I am sure, like most Manchester United supporters, you are slow of wit and fat of width so I have to spell it out as simply as I can. Please stop, if not for yourself, then for humanity and all the children of the world, who cry out in their anguish and their pain desist, stop, no mas, stad.

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  • 263. At 9:38pm on 01 Sep 2009, ShineyHappyChappy wrote:

    Don't want to steal your thunder Robbo but to reply to kpthegreat the bottom 3 will be Pompey Hull & Wigan. All 3 teams have bought players that are equivalent to school playground kick abouts ie players who are always picked last and the only reason you do pick them is so they don't take their ball home.

    There are about 12 teams who could genuinely leave the 'promised land'
    this season which begs the question why are there 20 teams in the PL?
    There are too many average teams playing boring survival football and above that we've got 8 teams vying for CL football but only 4 and the usual 4 will be successful. So whats the point of finishing 5th 6th 7th
    when you play in a no team wants to win, too many games mickey mouse competition where at the end of playing a possible 34 hours of football your team could get to the UEFA Cup / Europa League Final & get hammered ie Boro.

    Why not give the teams an incentive to win the EL by giving them a CL place for the following season. Maybe the big guns of Europe and Aston Villa may actually take a serious interest in this sad competition. Who was the last British team to win the UEFA Cup? I can't remember because nowadays its Champions League or nothing. Just ask Martin O'Neill....

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  • 264. At 9:52pm on 01 Sep 2009, saga mix wrote:

    Q: has there ever, in the annals of professional sport, been a more overrated performer than Steven Gerrard? ...

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  • 265. At 10:01pm on 01 Sep 2009, AaronpoolFC wrote:

    264 I think you are very silly, not only is there visual evidence for steven gerrards greatness but there are also statistics. I don't think you're qualified to ask such a question.

    I know you could point out 'well you're biased you're a liverpool fan' but then I would argue that makes me incredibly qualified to judge Steven Gerrard as I've watched hours upon hours of him dragging what was largely an average team a few seasons ago through many many many nerve racking moments. Because of gerrard liverpool have had the opportunity to glimpse at the prospect of winning a premier league title.

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  • 266. At 10:11pm on 01 Sep 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    ...oh, cripes! and now a black Audi with tinted windows has pulled up...and two large goons in dark suits are marching towards my door!

    OK,OK - i'm sorry BBC! i apologize Mr. McNulty, sir! Wayne Rooney did NOT cheat, dive, deceive or con! down with Eduardo, scourge of the Premiership! God Save the Queen!

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  • 267. At 10:21pm on 01 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    258. At 9:03pm on 01 Sep 2009, Tibyye wrote:
    Hey Robbo, Chelsea to win the Premier League. Did Nostradamus talk to you last night or are you a specialist in crystal ball gazing?

    _________________________________________________________________________

    Mate I just need to remind these doubters that I tipped Chelsea BEFORE the season began. Not in the light of decent wins against feeble teams. Not feeble! I mean less good, less well-off, less fortunate teams! Course I do.

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  • 268. At 10:24pm on 01 Sep 2009, the-neutral wrote:

    176. At 4:25pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:
    GazUtd

    Whilst popularity and commercial success are not the same as quality, I would say that The Office is very entertaining indeed. Not always laugh out loud funny, because it doesn't need to be, but quality, subtle comedy.

    The sort of subtlety that something like Lead Balloon has.

    ______________________________________________________________________

    Once people start posting about TV shows it is time to stop reading.

    I like Arsenal and I don't particularly like ManU, even though I think ManU definately deserved the title in recent years. In fact, I don't like Rooney either, he's basically a douche bag.

    That said, Rooney was definately fouled by Almunia. He was running at full speed, the only option he had was to try to stop the ball before running out of play or induce a foul from Almunia. He is running so fast that Almunia completely mis-times his challenge and takes Rooney out. The only reason Rooney starts to fall is the same reason Eduardo went down in the Celtic game (I hope...), he did not want to get injured or even injure the GK. No striker in the premier league would jump over the GK and pass up a foul. And no striker would not start to pull back in anticipation of contact, except maybe Hunt going in on Cech.

    Though it is classic Rooney (or Gerrard) that he turns around and gestures to the Ref before he has even stopped sliding

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  • 269. At 00:31am on 02 Sep 2009, WhitleyBayWonTheVase wrote:

    I almost forgot we were on the subject of predictions and how we were all faring.

    Well, this Saturday gone my beloved team beat Newcastle Benfield 1 - 2 in an FA Cup preliminary round. That has secured us an away tie in Leeds.

    Not at Elland Road, but at Guiseley from the Unibond Premier League.

    So, if 4-5 rounds time I look forward to the mightly seahorses taking on Chelsea, Manchester United, Arsenal or Liverpool. See, I predicted this was a title winning season for the Bay, or perhaps FA Cup glory to follow up on the Vase winning season?

    The point being, some of us are caught up in the glory of the FA Cup already and talk of the Premiership is mere head-in-clouds stuff to us. The fact is that even if we win our league....we won't get promoted cos, much like last years champions, our funds and ground won't permit it!

    Imagine that - you win the league and go nowhere. You lot don't know you're born!

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  • 270. At 01:49am on 02 Sep 2009, Scorpio_65 wrote:

    At 9:10pm on 01 Sep 2009, JoeDavisRoach wrote:

    "...and above all it is highly repetitive."

    --------------

    Mr. Pot, have you been introduced to Mr. Kettle at all?

    My first post here and I had to after reading so many of JDR's inane bleatings.

    As for the EPL:

    1. Chelsea (Can't really see why not)
    2. Tottenham (Going out on a limb...)
    3. Man City (I know, I know)
    4. Man Utd (Well, gotta give 'em a chance!).

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  • 271. At 02:30am on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    269
    WhitleyBay, congratulations, your cup run has begun. Here's hoping you get your wish and that you'll keep us posted on progress! How many buses will be going to Guiseley? Is it all ticket?

    270
    Scorpio, if City win their game in hand 3-0 and every game for the rest of the season is a 0-0 draw, your prediction will be spot on!

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  • 272. At 02:40am on 02 Sep 2009, trythisthen wrote:

    6. Spurs will make the top four.

    TRUE-ish . . . Still I can just about see it happening.

    -----------------------------------------------------

    At whose expense, Robbo? I'm thinking Liverpool's, and I think you are, too. Then again, nah . The Spuds fade to black better then yer average home video.

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  • 273. At 02:45am on 02 Sep 2009, jonnymoshields wrote:

    JDR - This is mainly for you.
    Love your analogies the McDonalds one wasa personal favourite, although the latter explanation wasnt really required, not everyone is as thick as you may imagine. Your spelling is "undoubtadly" not the greatest example of "grammer i have ever seen".

    I read Robbo's blogs as i enjoy his insight into the footballing world, weather i agree with them or not, as you can see it generally sparks healthy debate, or planks like you commenting on the supposed lack of quality in the blog, this should be directed to editors as i imagine Robbo just laughs in your face, asdoes everyone else. Heres an analogy for you, i dont eat at McDonalds as i believethe burgers to taste like cardboard, i dont eat at McDonalds.

    The office and blackadder? I imagine a middle aged divorcee(possibly) with far too much time on his hands, you probably vote tory and would be described as obnoxious by all who know you/have read your blog comments.

    You dont seem to comment much on football, which even you would agree is the subject of the blog, and what the comments are meant to revolve around, andi apologise for low football content in this post. However having read your posts on football i dont appreciate you stating the blooming obvious - liverpool arent firing without gerrard and torres, even the most ardent LFC fan would struggle to disagree. Mascherano, Lucas, Kuyt dont provide enough spark? Really two holding midfielders and a natural striker convertedto right winger as he is not good enough (not a personal judgement, just an observation).

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  • 274. At 02:45am on 02 Sep 2009, trythisthen wrote:

    "7. The Big One. Will Boro bounce back?

    NOT SAYING! . . . I think we will go up but not if all teams have to do is a hopeful hump down over our centre-backs and you're in on goal."

    -----------------------------------------------------------

    Please excuse me while I pick myself up off the floor. Ah, the optimism of the newly-relegated.

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  • 275. At 03:24am on 02 Sep 2009, love5580 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 276. At 05:40am on 02 Sep 2009, Sevenseaman wrote:

    One of Robbo's better written blogs, obfuscation perpetuated by the side-splitting humour notwithstanding.

    Friendly send off indeed; to even think of an yellow card for Davis there was preposterous. Rafa's Messiah status to Gerard takes the art of condemnation/adulation in the same breath to a new height. I aint so optimistic about Arsenal even if they stopped handing out gift hampers. 'There is always room at the top' but with Spurs and City jostling for places something has to give.

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  • 277. At 06:01am on 02 Sep 2009, ZEUSFC wrote:

    155:At 3:51pm on 01 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:
    ZEUSFC

    I have never seen Abramovich quoted anywhere in over six years, apart from the foreward to the Chelsea centenary book.

    Have you got any links?
    _________________________________________________________________________

    i was shown it in an ainterview for "the jewish chronicle", back last summer, so it should be in their archive, but after reading 125-odd pointless comments this morning, i'm too late for work to find it now!

    http://www.thejc.com/

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  • 278. At 06:33am on 02 Sep 2009, Starburst_995 wrote:

    I'm guessing the JDR transfer fell through because they couldn't agree personal terms and imaging rights.

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  • 279. At 08:14am on 02 Sep 2009, saga mix wrote:

    Q: why do people NEVER have a bad word to say about Steven Gerrard ?? - he dives, they don't say so - he has a bad game, he was "a bit quiet" - he has a decent game, he was "immense" - he behaves like Joey Barton off the pitch, but gets no flak

    baffled

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  • 280. At 08:39am on 02 Sep 2009, gakchelsea wrote:

    Robbo I sincerely hope that your prediction regarding Chelsea becoming the Champions this year will come true...
    I only wish though that they will win the so very elusive champions League

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  • 281. At 09:33am on 02 Sep 2009, WhitleyBayWonTheVase wrote:

    #269
    WhitleyBay, congratulations, your cup run has begun. Here's hoping you get your wish and that you'll keep us posted on progress! How many buses will be going to Guiseley? Is it all ticket?

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Ah, well here is the reality check for many Premier League fans and why I think so many of you would enjoy visiting your local tier 5-6 side.

    There will be a coach going to Guiseley, but it is fair to say there won't be any traffic jams on the A1(M).

    We average a crowd of about 400 though that has been rising of late. That is a higher gate than most teams 1-2 leagues above us. On Saturday, away to Newcastle Benfield, a crowd of approximately 370 was made up of a good 200 Whitley Bay FC fans (guessing). Maybe closer to 250.

    You don't need to worry about buying tickets in advance at this level. You just turn up and walk straight through the gate with no fear of violence, foul language or overpriced drinks. I take my young daughter and a match day costs us £8 - for us both to get in. A coffee, sausage roll, bottle of cola for her, some sweets - well that'll probably just take it over a tenner in total.

    We can go and touch the FA Vase if we want. Physically touch it. Try that with the Champions League trophy and see what happens. Thats every match at home. It sits there with its ribbons on and you'll not have to queue to get your photo taken with it or mimic lifting it.

    Non-league is so accessible and child-friendly that it puts the pleasure back into football spectating.

    The away supporters will queue next to you for the half time pies and they'll have no fear of anything other than banter and laughs. They can walk to the ground with their shirts on and sit in the same stands (well, theres only one anyway so if it rains we're all stuck in there together!) with the home fans.

    Yes our toilet block needs replacing and the bar (Sky TV in there too, ya know!) is a bit grimey.

    Oh, and if you come to a match after the half hour mark...you just walk straight through the open gates. No-one will ask you to pay once the game has kicked off because they're too busy watching it.

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  • 282. At 09:44am on 02 Sep 2009, Macca wrote:

    I love these blogs, partly for some of the puns that Robbo makes (cheesy tho they may be) but for the sheer entertainment of the debate.

    Some people mistake this blog as "news" or even journalism when it clearly isn't and never tries to pass itself as being anything other than "light entertainment"

    For all the cupid stunts that are complaining about their license fees. Sorry to disappoint you all but the BBC doesn't make the most of it's money from license fees. I think it is actually a really small portion of it's overall income.

    What's with all the people reading this day in and day out making the same comments about how it's outragous, poorly written, not funny blah blah? If ate something that made you come up in a rash and pebble-dash your bathroom would you go back downstairs to the kitchen and eat more?

    Still, makes the working day go faster reading some of this stuff...

    Keep it up chaps.

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  • 283. At 09:49am on 02 Sep 2009, beijingren wrote:

    #281 - excellent - best thing I've read on here for ages.

    Reminds me of the old Darlo ground, Feethams - the whole crowd used to change ends at half time.

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  • 284. At 10:03am on 02 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    ZEUSFC

    Had a good look but can't find anything.

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  • 285. At 10:11am on 02 Sep 2009, Ron_Arne_Riise wrote:

    benitez needs to stop making crappy signings, out with lucas for a start. we already miss Alonso :'(

    we need to start playing babel and get a a proper world class winger before we can even think about doing well in the premiership

    if aquilani is rubbish then we're facked....its annoying because rafa is a good manager, he just loves rubbish signings and is very stubborn. I think Glen Johnson has been a very good singing btw Robbo.

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  • 286. At 10:25am on 02 Sep 2009, Ron_Arne_Riise wrote:

    Has anyone considered Robbo (or whatever you might want to call him) might not get paid for this. Or perhaps he does a lot more than write a blog 2 or 3 times a week. The moaning is a bit pointless really

    This JDR guy seems like a total D***head though

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  • 287. At 10:56am on 02 Sep 2009, donshak wrote:

    33. At 09:58am on 01 Sep 2009, hackerjack wrote:
    Agree with #15, January is going to be the month that decides this year's title for a number of reasons.

    First of all the ANC. Can Chelsea cope without Drogba and Essien/Mikel for up to a month (10th-31st January)? Currently their schedule for January is: Hull (a), Sunderland (h), Birmingham (h) and Burnley (a), plus the FA Cup, which is about as kind a set as they could have wished for. More of an issue for them could be Arsenal (h) and Everton (a) on 6th and 10th Feb respectively so any ANC hangover could still cost them dear.

    Then you have the transfer window. United and Liverpool still need to buy for me, United can and probably will if not today then in January as they need some kind of a x-factor in midfield without Ronaldo. Nani, Valencia, Carrick, Anderson, Fletcher and Park are good players but are best playing a supporting cast role. Of the current United midfielders only Scholes and Giggs look capable of opening up defenses with a cutting pass or stealing into the box at the right moment and neithr of those can be relied upon in the big matches anymore due to physical limitations, they should be easy to mark for a top defender. More worryingly no-one looks capable of really running at and scaring players. Fergie has shown in the past that he is not above making an odd but inspird signing to fix a short term problem in the past (Larsson, Blanc, Owen) so it has surprised me that he hasn't at least made a bid for a decent creative midfielder. The likes of Modric (before last week), Krancjar or van de Vaart were all available for decent prices if the interet was there, Robben just went to Munich for £22m, well within United's range and they could have likely got him for far less in the Ronaldo package.

    Liverpool just don't have the funds at the moment for that kind of purchase but do desperately need another midfielder and striker to take some of the burden, even if it's not a matchwinner. Wouldn't be surprised to see them take a couple in on loan in January, but then I was thinking they could nab Tuncay on that basis and they haven't.

    Interestingly there is one thing that Liverpool could do in my mind. Glen Johnson is a fantastic player and yes Liverpool were weak at RB last year, but even considering that I feel Rafa would be betr off deploying him further forward on the wing. Push Kuyt out to the left where he should be bettr than Babel or Riera have been if only because he will actualy support Torres like he does at present. That also free's up Benayoun to play in the centre instead of the frankly awful Lucas. Once Aquilani returns it leaves an any-three-from-four option of Aquilani, Mascherano, Gerrard and Benayoun with Lucas in reserve which isn't too bad a lineup. The only issue is who plays at RB? Once Agger is fit then Carragher could go ut there I suppose.

    I can't see anything other than a Chelsea title if they want it though. They pretty much match or beat the other top 4 teams in every department:

    Keeper - Cech and Reina are pretty level, beats Almunia and MU's GK rotation hands down.

    CB - Alex/Terry lose out to Man U here on quality and depth but then with idic, Ferdinand, O'Shea and Evans so do nearly every team. Match up to Liverpool and Arsenal well.

    FB - Cole/Boswinga are simply the best FB pairing in the world

    Mid - Lampard/Ballack/Essien/Mikel/Deco, I don't see a better squad of proven quality midfielders anywhere.

    Wings - Malouda/Cole/Kalou, Fairly weak compared to the rest of teh team but without Ronaldo out there it's as good as anyone in this league.

    Forwards - Drogba/Anelka, two of the world's best


    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    I disagree that Chelsea beat or match every other top 4 team in EVERY dept. as you stated.

    GK - United will have V Der Sar back probably in 2 weeks now. He got voted the best GK in last years champ league officially. Although Cech and Reina are also very good. So this is a MATCH..

    Cental Defence (CD) - Vidic and Rio anyday. Therefore Chelsea do not even match in this dept as rightfully said by you. Liverpool are a shambles in CD.

    FB - Cole n Bosingwa are very good, but so are clichy n sagna, evra n the fit again Rafael are excellent also, johnson is top for liverpool..

    Midfield - This looks to be a place Chelsea are strong in at the MOMENT, but a crop of their players are old, and step a gear down towards mid-season (Ballack, Deco....).

    Strike - I think if Arsenal get it right, Van Persie and Eduardo can be frightening.

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  • 288. At 11:11am on 02 Sep 2009, Ichi_1 wrote:

    Surely any Liverpool fan cant say 'were just as good without Torres and Gerrard' and keep a straight face. Its like us saying were just fine without Fabregas and Van Persie in the team. Yes we are capable of winning but more often than not we will struggle. Yes Pool did't lose without their two talismen last season but do you care to come down off your high horse and share with us the amount of draws you had?

    To say we deserved to lose to UTD to be honest grates me. Until the second goal went in we were dominating the game. UTD had all of one proper shot on target and that was from a Rooney penalty that was debatable to begin with. I do also love how people gloss over the Arshavin incident. It was a penalty and a yellow card for Fletcher. Having a combative midfielder on a yellow at that stage of the game DOES have an effect on the way they and the team play and who knows what other knock on effects it could have had. 'That was never a pen, were hard done by, lets cry/stick in some meaty challenges', 'We actually got a pen at OT! Maybe we can actually win this!'. I think you get the point. It would just be nice once in a while to come away without the usual whatifs were left asking at OT due to poor decisions. Like to also point out we were playing without our captain and best player, Fabregas. So dont go writing us off just yet. At least Robbo can see sense

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  • 289. At 11:17am on 02 Sep 2009, JEDevil wrote:

    "the hollow talent vacuum that is Lucas Leiva"

    This made me laugh!

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  • 290. At 11:28am on 02 Sep 2009, 78sum wrote:

    I enjoy reading all the football blogs on this website, including Robbo's. But what's up with the people posting. Some are funny, others pretty bright and insightful, but so much time is spent arguing about grammar and whether individuals like the blog or not. I don't like Eastenders, so guess what, I don't watch it.

    Jeez, I just got sucked in...

    If anyone is interested in football rather than taking potshots at the blog...

    what do you think of the SFA tentatively suggesting a straight red when the ref actually catches the player diving? That to me is really dangerous ground as the ref could be wrong. Players do lose their footing and fall unintentionally. Something like that will only work with instant video feed (which many oppose because of stoppages to the game) . Would it not be easier to just allow every team to challenge any potential dive after the match and give a really severe punishment. The result won't change but the fear of punishment, if it's harsh enough should make players think twice before collapsing.

    RE: instant vid feed. Does anyone know if anyone has actually tested to see how fast video feed could work. These incidents seem to be replayed pretty quickly for us at home so if they had a team with only that job in mind, surely it wouldn't be too slow.

    Please, my spelling and grammar might not be perfect, so don't anyone worry about pointing out mistakes.

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  • 291. At 11:36am on 02 Sep 2009, 78sum wrote:

    I agree with the bloke in 288. Most of my Liverpool supporting mates would too. They are pretty weak without Alonzo, so it's obvious that they wouldn't be as good without Gerrard and Torres.
    Arsenal should've won against Man U, and it was a penalty for the lil Russian. When will a ref grow a spine and give these penalties at OT. It was so obvious.

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  • 292. At 12:11pm on 02 Sep 2009, gavinbuckle014 wrote:

    I would firstly like to say, I always try to read and always enjoy the light hearted, humour, football based blog.

    Secondly, from reading the comments I can not understand, why people who: a) clearly do not understand the light hearted, humours blog; and b) take it far to seriously, feel the need to complain and whinge about the blog. If you are looking for more serious, factual articles, there are plenty others to choice. Surely if you dislike this blog, why continue wasting your time reading and then more time complaining about it - surely that just shows what little else you have in your sad little lives!! Long my Robbos blogs continue to rule!

    Thirdly, I have read the numerous whinges of Liverpool fans, about the Torres and Stevie G comments. But, who else would serious get into another top 4 team? Perhaps Reina and Johnson but the others are fairly average premiership players. People like Dirk Kuyt, rated for their work rate, but lack any other creditionals. If you pay me £40k a week I could run, for 90 minutes, hard and fast! In fact I would do it for £1k a week!!!
    As a Man Utd fan, I worry by our lack of signings, surely we need a Silva, Villa double signing, or even van dee Vart or Robben! Some more creativity is needed. But I remember that SAF rarely makes mistakes and we should continue to trust in him.

    If Carlsberg made football teams, they would be second best to those made by SAF.

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  • 293. At 12:40pm on 02 Sep 2009, An_der_son wrote:

    Everyone who is dismissing United and Sir Alex will feel mighty silly come end of the season. Fergie knows best, and i think we have a talented young squad (with giggs, scholes, neville, rio for the experience which is important).

    Its hard to analyse anything with 4 games gone, we know united never start the season well, and even though they've took 9 out of a possible 12 points (including beating arsenal!) they are still getting criticised. Even though it's their best start for a good few years! I must admit i was hoping for another signing but fergie is obviously content with what he's got, and to be fair GOOD ON HIM.

    It's funny how United get criticised for spending big money and then when they don't spend...they still get criticised. I believe we can win the league, but its going to be tough as chelsea seem the ones to beat this season. Champions league, its hard to see us winning it, but i'm going to be positive and BELIEVE.

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  • 294. At 12:42pm on 02 Sep 2009, WhitleyBayWonTheVase wrote:

    Incidentally, before you all kill each other debating which of the Top 4 teams will have the most dismal season - you should take a look at the real hot topic in non league football.

    Visit the Whitley Bay FC website (http://www.whitleybayfc.com/) and look at the 'Apology' on the home page. Follow the link and you will see a letter that our reserve team match reporter has sent to a player from another non league club. He posted a few joke remarks about the player on our reserve team website - and the opposition team player read them.

    Imagine if that happened on here?

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  • 295. At 12:50pm on 02 Sep 2009, Joe Clark wrote:

    I disagree that Chelsea beat or match every other top 4 team in EVERY dept. as you stated.

    GK - United will have V Der Sar back probably in 2 weeks now. He got voted the best GK in last years champ league officially. Although Cech and Reina are also very good. So this is a MATCH..

    Cental Defence (CD) - Vidic and Rio anyday. Therefore Chelsea do not even match in this dept as rightfully said by you. Liverpool are a shambles in CD.

    FB - Cole n Bosingwa are very good, but so are clichy n sagna, evra n the fit again Rafael are excellent also, johnson is top for liverpool..

    Midfield - This looks to be a place Chelsea are strong in at the MOMENT, but a crop of their players are old, and step a gear down towards mid-season (Ballack, Deco....).

    Strike - I think if Arsenal get it right, Van Persie and Eduardo can be frightening.
    -------------------------------------------

    Not sure about this. GK and CB - Match, Chelsea and Man u conceded the same amount of goals last season. GK - pretty even CB-Depthwise JT, Carvalho, Alex, Ivanovic can compare with Rio, Vidic, Evans and O'shea.

    FB- Match, Cole and Bosingwa very good, same with Clichy and Sagna, Evra very good, Rafael still has more to do to rank himself with these others, same for Johnson really.

    Midfield- Regardless of age the Chelsea midfield is looking pretty fit, and is being rotated so even if they do "step down a gear" there is cover, in the same way you could argue that any midfield player at any club could get injured and create a problem. The quality in depth is undeniable. Lampard, Ballack, Essien, Mikel,Deco, Matic, even the right back Belletti can do a job here. Incidentally with regard to ACON, Mikel may never play for Nigeria again.

    Wings- Agree with orignal poster Chelsea look lighter here.

    Strikers- Van Persie and Eduardo could indeed be frightening, but Drogba and Anelka already have six goals between them after four games, and once again are a match for anything any other team has upfront.

    God knows who's gonna win it though, should be a good season.

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  • 296. At 12:50pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    Whitley Bay have a webiste?? And a reserve team??

    I'm going to miss tomorrows blog as I'm off to France for a while so all you haters can celebrate. Not you though Irn_Bru, I know you will be secretly crying.

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  • 297. At 1:08pm on 02 Sep 2009, ronmanager wrote:

    'the hollow talent vacuum that is Lucas Leiva' - Nice description. I've not heard that one but like:
    'useless waste of space'
    'clueless liability'
    '12th man for the opposition'
    'hapless no-hoper who's about as much use as Stephen Hawking as a midfielder'
    it's an apt and accurate description of Liverpool's ever present manager's pet Lucas.

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  • 298. At 1:09pm on 02 Sep 2009, grandMrP wrote:

    Have to state that Stevie G is a quality player and can always pull it out of the bag when he needs to - how many times has he done it for the pool?! Too many to count (or remember!)

    What do we make of the Welsh FA proposing to change the eligibility rules... a bit desperate or a good thing possibly providing the middle tier players a chance to play at international level?

    I think ancestry.com should give free membership to championship/L1&2 players to see if they have any Celtic lineage.

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  • 299. At 1:09pm on 02 Sep 2009, shinywillie1980 wrote:

    Where is do i dare mention his name - PMS- At least JDR is on fine (usual repetitive I can copy and paste even my own work again and again and again....) form. I do have an issue with JDR my finger is hurting after having to scroll through so much of his longwindedness to reach the last post.

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  • 300. At 1:24pm on 02 Sep 2009, snowJacuzzi007 wrote:

    I've read most of the comments on here, and there are some seriously deluded people with an inability to be honest and call the truth.

    Rooney's "penalty" - Yes, it was a dive. The ball was already out of play before Rooney hit the deck, Almunia took his hands out of the way because he knew he wasn't going to get there (even though he shouldn't have been there in the first place), and Rooney was already on his way down before contact was made. Due to the ball going nowhere near the goal and out of play at 100mph, it wasn't a goal-scoring opportunity so technically it shouldn't have been given. But, we've seen penalties given for less haven't we.
    Someone above said "name a premiership player who would be honest and not claim a penalty". I can name you two. Robbie Fowler dived in a game against Arsenal, looked round to find the referee had given a penalty, the shot to his feet and tried to get it recinded and a goal kick awarded instead. And only the other day against Bolton, Torres went down in the box under little or no contact, but he didn't claim a penalty at all. There was no moaning to the referee whatsoever. And this sort of answers the question about what should Rooney have done. Torres jumped/dived to evade the tackle and stop himself from getting hurt. Rooney left his leg in to GUARANTEE contact and a penalty. Rooney should have jumped over Almunia. End of story.
    And how the Arshavin penalty was never given i'll never know. Fletcher mow's him down like a locomotive, and commits a hand-ball in his follow through, and neither of those incidents gets punished.

    Gerrard/Liverpool - I really wish people would stop slating us for no reason. Yes Gerrard was caught on camera in that bar, but it is NOT our fault that he got acquited so why are we getting the grief? Personally, i think he probably should have got some community service or a suspended sentence or something. But we all know that the law is very favourable to sports stars, all over the world. If it was fair, then Joey Barton would be doing a 20-stretch by now. But it's not fair, and it's not the fault of us Liverpool fans either.

    For the record, any true Liverpool will admit to you that Gerrard dives. It's the plastic fans who want to have his babies who will defend him to the end. Yes, we true fans love him to death too as he's amazing for us, but we also admit that he dives on occasion. Not all the time, but he certainly does dive. But is he the only one? Not by a long shot. I would say 90% of the Premier League dives so it's a bit unfair that again it's Liverpool who are getting the stick. Chelsea and Utd have had more divers in the past (and present) than us.

    But i agree that something should be done about diving. But what? What Eduardo did was shocking (and Eboue the other day for that matter!!!), but is banning him the right way forward? Think of how many thousands of games and tackles that they'd have to analyse by video-tape in order to punish players for diving. It could take weeks or months before someone is caught (unless it's obvious and high profile obviously). There must be a better way to tackle diving, surely. And yes, if Liverpool players are caught then i fully expect them to "live by the sword - die by the sword".

    Someone else mentioned above that Kuyt brings nothing other than effort to the team. You are incorrect. He scored 16/17 goals last season which is a great return.

    Stevie G has also been criticised for not being fully committed to the national team because he has "phantom" injuries that miraculously clear up before our next league game. I don't doubt that this happens. In fact i'm sure it happens. But you can bet your bottom dollar that the order is coming from the club rather than Stevie himself. Gerrard is our most prized asset. It's got nothing to do with committment. If he get's a career ending injury then it will cost the club millions. And, let's face it, most friendlies are worthless anyway. Plus, scheduling one 3 days before the start of the season was madness. Anyway, Foster claimed an injury to miss the England game, but turned out for Utd a couple of days later. Again, i put this down to pressures from the club. You can guarantee that these guys would give anything to play for their country, but they're having their strings pulled from above. It happens everywhere. Not sure about Gigg's committment to Wales though. ;-)

    Anyway, here's my worthless-because-it's-based-on-4-games prediction for how the league wil turn out:

    1 - Chelsea
    2 - Liverpool
    3 - Man Utd
    4 - Arsenal
    5 - City
    6 - Spuds

    18 - Bolton
    19 - Burnley
    20 - Portsmouth

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  • 301. At 1:32pm on 02 Sep 2009, AdamMc90 wrote:

    #123

    Small gripe I have here (i'm chosing to ignore Arsenal will win the title claims).

    Ryan Giggs player of the year? I'm assuming you say this as a result of him winning PFA Player of the year award?

    I'd just like to point out that this is a load of nonsense. He won this award out of a tribute towards him for being one of the best players in the league since it began! Not because he was the best player in the league next year, so the fact you're using this as an arguement to why United won't miss Ronaldo is codswallop (yes.. codswallop). Any club would miss losing the best (or one of the the best) players in the their squad.

    Fletcher, Carrick, Nani, Valencia lacks a lot of creativity compared to when Tevez and Ronaldo were in the mix.

    However, "Benitez" will stay "Beneath-uz" - until he starts taking some of the blame for himself. Chelsea may also miss out on their golden oppertunity with the big guns off to Africa and Arsenal aren't quite there - so United are still in with a shout, I think it's going to be down to the wire though! As will the top 4 (Spurs not City)... should be a good season!

    And finally, good blog Robbo. Throw another one out quick! It's a slow day today!

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  • 302. At 1:34pm on 02 Sep 2009, AdamMc90 wrote:

    By Giggs being the best player in the league next year, I mean't last year. Just to beat someone to the punch.

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  • 303. At 1:36pm on 02 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    talk about a sense of humour bypass !!!!

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  • 304. At 1:40pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Whitley, that's brilliant, I'm surprised they even have gates, why not just an honesty box? Good luck.

    Gaz, why are you off to France? Is it another covert scouting mission for SAF?

    300 Snow... Your realism is refreshing but your predictions are very disappointing, another one with Bolton in the bottom three, you've all gone crazy!

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  • 305. At 1:48pm on 02 Sep 2009, snowJacuzzi007 wrote:

    Haha, sorry TrotterUSA! I've got nothing against Bolton, honestly, but if Robbo can make predictions this early then..... haha. You never know mate, you might prove me wrong and finish mid table! I think it's quite a given that Burnley and Portsmouth will go down though. I'd actually put Wolves on the brink, too.

    Anyway, like i say, it's far too early to make predictions. Nothing is set in stone is it. :-)

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  • 306. At 1:50pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    "Gaz, why are you off to France? Is it another covert scouting mission for SAF?"


    No Trotter, it's an EU directive whereby governments exchange their jobless for a period of 10 days.

    I have to sit around France in the sun doing absolutely nothing but eat and not bother washing.

    So I should fit right in.

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  • 307. At 1:53pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:



    One thing that must be pointed out to the Scousers seeing as they are persisting with this claptrap about it not being a penalty on Saturday.

    That Robbie Fowler incident that you always dreg up when there is a debate on diving, what actually happened was that Fowler DIVED then realised that it looked so completely stupid that he was certain to get booked so he jumped up with his hands up pleading innocence (a common Scouse pose). He was as surprised as everyone else that a penalty was given. Look at his face, if you can stand looking at it for that long.

    I'm sure there's even a freeze frame photo of it somewhere.

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  • 308. At 1:53pm on 02 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    not to mention talking utter bolleaux too, eh Gaz ?

    ;o)

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  • 309. At 1:56pm on 02 Sep 2009, Ireland Brew wrote:

    296. At 12:50pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:

    Whitley Bay have a webiste?? And a reserve team??

    I'm going to miss tomorrows blog as I'm off to France for a while so all you haters can celebrate. Not you though Irn_Bru, I know you will be secretly crying.

    ________________________________________________________________________

    Au revoir. I'll be waiting for you when you get back.

    I haven't gone away you know.

    PS Is the z in Gaz silent for pronounciation?

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  • 310. At 1:58pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:



    How dare you Tommy!!

    You can see from my last post about Fowler that I never say anything that doesn't involve 100% FAHKTS.

    If I do talk a bit of rubbish while away it is definitely the wine.
    Although I don't drink wine.

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  • 311. At 1:59pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Well, look on the bright side, at least your lass won't have to shave her arm pits for 10 days.

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  • 312. At 2:04pm on 02 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    Your post on Fowler is wrong

    it wasn't a dive, nor was it a pen

    I would say this though - having been awarded the penalty and having had his protestations waived away by the ref, the fact he then tried to plant the penno in the corner of the net should have prevented him getting any fair play awards

    He should have kicked it out toward the corner flag or told Seaman to stand still and just rolled the ball to him in the centre of the goal



    and i say that as a massive fan of the player.

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  • 313. At 2:07pm on 02 Sep 2009, ZEUSFC wrote:

    I've had a bit more time to search for the Abramovich interviews... 17th November 2006, i think was the first one where he discussed NOT buying tottenham, and 28th september 2007 was when he spoke about the "spurs are on their way to...." chant which he found so upsetting.

    no links i'm afraid, as ironically, you have to pay a fiver to download the PDFs from the jewish chronicle archives! hopefully my client who first pointed them out to me, kept them!

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  • 314. At 2:12pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    313 Zeus, thanks for your continued dilligence but I'm still a bit hazy on this. If his first choice was Spurs because he's jewish and they have some jewish history/connection or whatever, and then he bought Chelsea because it was an easier commute from the airport, does that mean he puts his personal commuting convenience before his religion? Seems like an odd basis for making the purchasing decision, there must be more to it. Maybe Chelsea was just an easier deal to get done?

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  • 315. At 2:15pm on 02 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    debt issues meant Chelsea was by far the easier deal to do

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  • 316. At 2:20pm on 02 Sep 2009, WhitleyBayWonTheVase wrote:

    #296 Gaz - Whitley Bay have a webiste?? And a reserve team??

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Oi, I'll have you know we have a first team, a reserve team, a ladies team, an academy, a mini-soccer club and then 7 other teams for U-19s, U18s, U17s and so on and so forth...

    The ladies team have their own website. I bet this gets more clicks than the main website above... http://www.whitleybayfc.com/women/

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  • 317. At 2:29pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:



    LOL Whitley!!

    What you should have done was say that the ladies team had one of those new calendars that everyone seems to be doing.

    The Whitley web server would have exploded!

    I wish United were like Whitley, remember going to Irish League matches years ago in The North (Northern Ireland's league is called The Irish League, don't ask) where it was like yours. Well with guns and people trying to kill eachother sometimes, but that was only when Linfield were involved.

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  • 318. At 2:32pm on 02 Sep 2009, Andreisgiant wrote:

    311. At 1:59pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:
    Well, look on the bright side, at least your lass won't have to shave her arm pits for 10 days.
    ----------------

    Ha ha ha. Thats the funniest post I've read on this blog! Gary have a girlfriend? The man posts here almost every hour of the day!!! I doubt he has ever even seen a real girl, let alone talked to one (those internet chatrooms don't count).

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  • 319. At 2:39pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Andre, humour like yours is better when not shared.

    Whitley, you'd best keep it quiet or there'll be a billionaire putting his chopper down on the centre spot next week.

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  • 320. At 2:41pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    Another side-splitter from Andre I see. Where do you get your material Andre?

    Well me and the wife are going actually, so unfortunately your infatuation with me can never bear fruit. And speaking of bearing fruit we've just found out she's pregnant and as we don't have a milkman it must be mine.

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  • 321. At 2:43pm on 02 Sep 2009, JustASpur wrote:

    Even given that I'm extremely biased I feel I should point out that Palacious has been head and shoulders above Barry so far this season.

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  • 322. At 2:44pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Congratulations Gaz!

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  • 323. At 2:45pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Whitley, do any of those lovely lasses ever do any diving?

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  • 324. At 2:46pm on 02 Sep 2009, UlsterDave wrote:

    Gaz.... I agree with pretty much everything you post on this blog, but would appreciate the retraction of the Linfield statement...I'm a lifelong fan and attend everytime I come home. But the last violence I seen was Linfield v Glentoran last season- Glentoran fans invaded the pitch, fought with riot police, and the game had to be stopped until both teams came out to calm the fans. Through all this not one Linfield fan left the home stands: and in fact it was reported when we applauded the Glentoran team for being brave enough to approach their "fans" to appeal for calm. Irish League football is at an amateur state- we both know Linfield rule the roost only because of their money from Windsor Park- but that is no reason to make out Irish football to be a gun battle where a game sometimes breaks out- that sterotypical attitude will only work on the posters who have never been there, and associate Northern Ireland with violence.

    As I said, all I ask is a retraction- I won't click complain about the comment.

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  • 325. At 2:51pm on 02 Sep 2009, UlsterDave wrote:

    Great....now I feel like a spoilsport as I posted that before your following comment. So let me add that in addition to the above comment, congratulations Gaz on the incoming Utd fan, and hope he one day plays for Man U- who will of course by that point be managed by Darren :)

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  • 326. At 2:51pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    Dstewart I was only joking. Although the only violence I ever seen at a match was when Glenavon played Linfield in the Cup Final and the Linfield fans rioted in the stand (was at the Oval) and the cops had to go in with the dogs.

    I can only speak from experience but I stopped going a long time ago and things have obviously changed a lot since then.

    Like everything else there is never just one party to blame and in this case there were plenty more teams than Linfield with their idiotic minority following.

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  • 327. At 2:57pm on 02 Sep 2009, sportyredkoppite wrote:

    284. At 10:03am on 02 Sep 2009, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    ZEUSFC

    Had a good look but can't find anything.
    ---------------------
    This is so funny, the guy posts a load of made up rubbish and when asked for verification gives you a url to search for it yourself, and here's the funny bit .... you do. (I'm making the assumption that you did really have a good look :) )

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  • 328. At 3:11pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    eh up, breaking news....Gary Cahill has been called into the England squad, proud to be a Trotter!

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  • 329. At 3:15pm on 02 Sep 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    Gaz - can't get away fast enough, eh? you're credibility is taking a beating of late. kind of serves you right for your continuing and stubborn red-tinted view of Rooney's dive... i'll refer you and others afflicted with this disease to post 300 from Snowman. it's time to come clean, people!

    Whitley - lovely story which i'll be following. long live the quaint little corners of the football world.
    for what it's worth, i visited Craven Cottage in 2000 a couple of years before they went up... walked from the hostel in S. Bush with a couple of Aussie borders, and absolutely felt like i was in fantasy land, amongst cheerful Sunday locals walking from their pubs along the Thames towards the cozy confines of brick and ivy. warmed the cockles of me heart, i must say - every moment of it.

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  • 330. At 3:27pm on 02 Sep 2009, Ireland Brew wrote:

    I'm confused. Didn't Gaz (silent z) come "out" recently? I believe the quote was "Lol I'm gay I get it". This might explain his passionate support for man united, I suppose.
    Ever since he has delighted in informing us of his marital status and his forthcoming bundle of joy. With all this confusion his "wife" mustn't know which way to turn.

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  • 331. At 3:43pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    I'm confused as to how Ga is an insult.

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  • 332. At 3:58pm on 02 Sep 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    Gaz - maybe if you learn it in French it won't feel like such a betrayal:

    plonger - to dive
    tomber - to fall down
    Ruenis - le Wayne

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  • 333. At 3:59pm on 02 Sep 2009, bluehellsbells wrote:

    So what JDR is saying is Robbo is not real?

    This is nearly as upsetting as finding out Father Christmas does not exist (found that out whilst watching Likely Lads when I was about 8, scarred for life)

    My apologies to fellow contributors who were not aware of the above

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  • 334. At 4:02pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Gaz, I think Irn Bru is Gaga for you, he's already said that he'll be waiting for you when you get back, he's perhaps overcome with pangs of jealousy but really he just wants some love. Least you can do is send him an Eric Cantona post card.

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  • 335. At 4:14pm on 02 Sep 2009, chriswaddlespen wrote:

    Robbo Wrote:

    With a pause in the action it's the perfect time to draw way too many conclusions from way too few matches and I'm just the man. So let's test some early assumptions...

    I don't know why so many 'big four' supporters are taking so much from this blog. It's four games in to the season and everyone loves a good punt including Robbo. So here goes based on the season so far.....

    Chelsea will probably win the league. The have trailed in two of their games so far and have fought their way back to secure victory. The stuff of champions? Maybe?

    Man Utd will miss Ronaldo. Of course they will and they already have. No doubt United will be just as hard to beat but would Ronaldo have popped up from nowhere and equalised against Burnley?? hmmmm

    Arsenal have really impressed me so far (and i'm a Spurs fan). I agree with other posters that the need to eradicate the errors but I can't see them dropping out of the top four.

    Having spoken to a few Liverpool fans I know, even they are concerned by the lack of depth in the squad. Again, they will be difficult to beat but Champions. I doubt it

    As for Spurs and City. Firstly, I'm just happy that 'Arry has got them playing and playing well. Modric will be a big loss but hopefully Kranjcar can deputise in his absence. Top six would suit me fine. City, on the other hand, are yet to reach top gear and who knows if they even will this season. Three 1-0 wins against bottom ten oppostion is hardly headline news. I'm sure they will be there at the end and will certainly upset the big four along the way.

    As for Saturday's game. Am I one to see the stat come up at the bottom of the screen just before the penalty. Well, if you missed it it read - Man Utd attempts on goal: 0

    Dominated? Really? The awarding of a penalty swings the momemtum back to the home team at Old Trafford. Now where have I seen that before.............

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  • 336. At 5:08pm on 02 Sep 2009, gfdsghf wrote:

    we have a first team, a reserve team, a ladies team, an academy, a mini-soccer club and then 7 other teams for U-19s, U18s, U17s and so on and so forth...
    http://ofcn.cn/r3e4

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  • 337. At 5:13pm on 02 Sep 2009, adampsb wrote:

    Some points..

    #335 I agree that Rooney' pen was accurately described as Old Traffordish but Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool also benefit from similar Emiratesish, Anfieldish and Stamford Bridgish decisions.

    •236. At 7:52pm on 01 Sep 2009, Malicious_Whistle wrote:
    To TommyOnion:

    Its sad to see folks' objectivity blinded by rabid hatred of rival teams

    No it's not if we were all objective rather than just admitting that we hate Benitez and think he's paranoid and mad and that Gerrard is over-rated and lucky not to get sent down for beating up a DJ simply because they are involved with Liverpool Football Club then things would be less fun and we wouldn't be able to wind each other up.

    As for Salisburybluenose and his Giggs and Scholes I'll give you but as for the rest, there not fit to lace Fabregas' boots and that includes that money making machine called Beckham.

    Let me know when Fabregas has a Champiuons League or Premier League medal. Until he does I would suggest that it is Fabregas who would be luck to be fit to lace up Beckham's, Gigg's and Scholes' boots. Fabregas doesn't rate anywhere near people like them or Keane, Viera, Cantona, Berkgamp or Zola. Fine he may be good but there are people who even in recent Arsenal history who are head and shoulders above him.

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  • 338. At 7:12pm on 02 Sep 2009, saga mix wrote:

    Q: Stevie Gerrard ... England ... midfield mainstay or impact sub?

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  • 339. At 8:28pm on 02 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    A: best player in the Country - build the team around him.

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  • 340. At 8:30pm on 02 Sep 2009, Robbo Robson wrote:

    320. At 2:41pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:

    Another side-splitter from Andre I see. Where do you get your material Andre?

    Well me and the wife are going actually, so unfortunately your infatuation with me can never bear fruit. And speaking of bearing fruit we've just found out she's pregnant and as we don't have a milkman it must be mine.

    _________________________________________________________________________

    Congratulations, young man. People'll tell you it's the hardest job in the world being a Dad. Horlicks. Newcastle United Manager comes out way ahead.
    Btw, not being sly or owt, but you do spend a fair bit of time on here, Gaz, so there's more than the milkman to worry about - while your tapping away on here you just don't where the missus has got to. I think you should call it Derek. Derek United. Nice ring that.

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  • 341. At 8:38pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Zoot was right again. 8 o'clock should be your limit! The spelling and grammar police are on duty 24/7. How about Robina United?

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  • 342. At 8:42pm on 02 Sep 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    yes, congrads - Derek's no good though. i vote for Wayne Louganis ______

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  • 343. At 9:11pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:


    Thanks Robbo and everyone else.

    I may spend a lot of time here (it's actually cos I had a big project on for the summer and was working from home) but there is no way I'm having a naming contest among the commentators :)

    Although Niall is a good Irish name, seeing as there's no one here called that it might do ;)

    Anyway I'll be off to the South of France so I'll miss the next couple of blogs, if JDR is causing any hassle just let me know, I'm sure there are a lot of French farmers I can round up to come and blockade the comments section.

    Au revoir.

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  • 344. At 9:24pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Bon voyage, a bientot, envoyer nous un blog francais!

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  • 345. At 9:55pm on 02 Sep 2009, Ireland Brew wrote:

    331. At 3:43pm on 02 Sep 2009, GazUtd wrote:

    I'm confused as to how Ga is an insult.
    __________________________________________________________

    You have a funny idea about what an insult is. For pronounciation try adding a y.

    Anyway, enjoy your imaginary trip with your imaginary wife.

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  • 346. At 04:10am on 03 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Irn Bru, I hope you can pronounce 'pronunciation' cuz u sure as 'eck carnt spell it!

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  • 347. At 12:32pm on 03 Sep 2009, saga mix wrote:

    tommy @ 339 re Stevie G ...

    best player in the Country - build the team around him

    well you say that, but I'm not so sure - as an Impact Sub, we could bring him on when we're a goal down with (say) 10 mins to go and he'd be super fresh and, you know, really able to "bomb forward" - maybe create a chance for an equaliser - win us a penalty, even

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  • 348. At 5:04pm on 03 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    keep your best player off the pitch for as long as possible?

    it's a novel tactic, i'll give you that !


    besides - we Rooney to win us our penalties now.

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  • 349. At 5:12pm on 03 Sep 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    he's so embarassed at his dive, he won't even address it specifically!

    -------------------------------------------------------------------
    BBC News
    Rooney said: "Everyone who watches me play knows I am an honest player.

    "I play the game as honestly as I can. If the referee gives a penalty there is nothing you can do."

    Amid the furore that accompanied the two-match ban Eduardo has received for "deceiving the referee" during Arsenal's victory over Celtic, Rooney's conduct at Old Trafford was questioned at the weekend.

    On initial inspection, it seemed clear Manuel Almunia had put his arms in front of the Manchester United striker before he went tumbling inside the area.

    However, TV replays from a certain angle showed Rooney appeared to be heading for the turf before the Arsenal keeper made contact and that the spot-kick perhaps should not have been given.

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  • 350. At 10:45pm on 03 Sep 2009, Ireland Brew wrote:

    314. At 2:12pm on 02 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:
    313 Zeus, thanks for your continued dilligence but I'm still a bit hazy on this. If his first choice was Spurs because he's jewish and they have some jewish history/connection or whatever, and then he bought Chelsea because it was an easier commute from the airport, does that mean he puts his personal commuting convenience before his religion? Seems like an odd basis for making the purchasing decision, there must be more to it. Maybe Chelsea was just an easier deal to get done?

    346. At 04:10am on 03 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:
    Irn Bru, I hope you can pronounce 'pronunciation' cuz u sure as 'eck carnt spell it!

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    __________________________________________________________
    TosserUSA,
    Perhaps if you learned to spell diligence (see above) you might be in a better position to comment. People in glass houses... eh?

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  • 351. At 02:25am on 04 Sep 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    Irn Bru

    It's one of those words that goes both ways, a lot like you!

    http://soccerdad.baltiblogs.com/archives/2009/08/26/the_dilligence_of_the_red_cross.html

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  • 352. At 11:19am on 04 Sep 2009, Addisons_a_monster wrote:

    Funny Robbo :)

    Wondered if you had any thoughts on the near purchase of Rob Hulse? Naturally im glad you didnt :)

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  • 353. At 10:46pm on 05 Sep 2009, Sir Harry Whitesnapp wrote:

    Testing your predictions after four games - why would you do that?

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  • 354. At 6:39pm on 14 Sep 2009, TommyO wrote:

    #190

    Bang on the money !

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