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Headlines and horrible howlers

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Steve Wilson | 13:15 UK time, Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Not being a Twitter user, I have never tried to condense a point of view into 140 characters, but last weekend the Guardian headline-writers showed how to do it style in by summing up the reaction of England fans in just six characters.

"Idiot!" screamed their headline at Wayne Rooney following his red card against Montenegro.

Needless to say Wazza's England team-mates rallied round him in the interview area after the game in Podgorica, with reminders of Rooney's all-round brilliance in the qualifying campaign. There were, don't forget, the goals in Bulgaria and ... umm ... wait a minute ... well there were the goals in Bulgaria ... something against Switzerland and there must have been something pretty good against Wales.

Wayne Rooney commits a foul against Montenegro

Wayne Rooney suffered a rush of blood to the head against Montenegro. Photo: Getty

Of course you wouldn't expect Rooney's England team-mates to be openly critical of their most gifted colleague but TV viewers may have spotted one telling low-angle slow-motion replay of the incident, which showed captain John Terry in the background.

As Rooney's act of numbskull violence unfolded at a quarter speed, Terry's face ever so slowly betrayed his emotions. There was no rush to plead for clemency to the referee, no shock, no wince, no surprise even. There was just an eloquent glance which was echoed by the following morning's headline.

I can't help wondering if the England squad had been reminded by the manager before kick-off in Montenegro that a red card in the game would mean a ban in the Euro 2012 finals. Of course it is not an excuse if they hadn't - the players should know that that would be the case - but I bet some of the squad had not given it a thought. Sometimes the finer points of the regulations slip under the radar until it's too late.

Just ask South Africa. Last weekend also saw the final round of qualifying matches for the African Cup of Nations to be hosted jointly by Gabon and Equatorial Guinea. Remarkably, Nigeria, Cameroon and Egypt have all failed to make the final tournament; also out after Saturday's games are the 2010 World Cup hosts South Africa.

Playing in Nelspruit against Sierra Leone, South Africa knew they could still qualify, as long as Niger did not win in Egypt. As Niger were on the wrong end of a 3-0 defeat against Egypt (in fact the Egyptian Olympic team - mainly players under 23 - was selected because the senior squad are in disgrace after their terrible campaign) South Africa knew that a win was required to book their place in the finals.

Actually scrub that. South Africa should have known that a win was required to book their place in the finals. The BBC website's excellent text service knew that that was the case. The only problem was that nobody told the South Africans. Instead Bafana Bafana defended a 0-0 scoreline in the mistaken belief that they would qualify on goal difference.

The tournament rules state that in the event of three teams finishing on level points then results in matches against each other would determine who qualified. South Africa discovered their mistake only after a lengthy lap of honour and after receiving the congratulations of their football association president Kirsten Nematandani.

Manager Pitso Mosimane later admitted he had no idea of the regulations and assumed their superior goal difference was the deciding factor. Instead, Niger have reached the finals next year pending an appeal from the South African FA which I very much hope will be treated with the disdain it deserves.

The South African footballers' embarrassment will almost certainly have been knocked off the back pages of their newspapers by the Springboks' defeat to Australia in the quarter-finals of the Rugby World Cup - and for that they should be very grateful.

"Idiot" doesn't quite do it justice.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Deja vu

  • Comment number 2.

    I don't think a manager can make any assumptions when it comes to Rooney. The player is our most dangerous asset (as long as there is a team around him), but occasionally he is a danger only to himself and those smacking themselves in the forehead after another dumb act.

    I doubt Terry was aware of the implications either, but in his defence it's a given that you shouldn't get red carded in ANY game, not just the last fixture in qualifying.

    Thing is, he is still our most potent weapon. So if we can create a good team out of the rest of the squad (which should be possible) then we have him as our secret weapon!

    But the South African case is classic. What a shame that not one of the entire team, coaching staff or CROWD understood the rules...

  • Comment number 3.

    "1. At 15:58 11th Oct 2011, MrBlueBurns wrote:

    Deja vu"

    All over again?

  • Comment number 4.

    Is this the third blog on the Rooney red card?
    Are journalists taking turns? LOL

  • Comment number 5.

    Out of interest, is it always the case, with international football at least, that cards picked up in a friendly only affect future friendlies and cards picked up in competitive matches only affect future competitive matches?

  • Comment number 6.

    @ 5.At 16:06 11th Oct 2011, MrBlueBurns,

    I don't think it's the case.
    If it was, it would be laughable.

  • Comment number 7.

    What is it with South Africa?

    I seem to remember them doing something similar in cricket where they declared 1 run early and only drew against someone, (with wickets in hand), as a result.

  • Comment number 8.

    #6 Football_UK

    Surely, it must be the case. The alternative of a mix and match approach would be contrived wouldn't it?

  • Comment number 9.

    @ 8, MrBlueBurns,

    we'd have the case of international friendlies arranged to wipe out penalties to international players. Nah.

    I think an interesting conversation would be finding titles that might attract people, since it appears to be the third blog (in how many days?) on Rooney.

    I'd give an example: Rooney and West Ham's expectations to be tennants at the Olympic stadium.

    Or Rooney and weekend-holidays in the UK ?

  • Comment number 10.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 11.

    1

    it was the same with the tevez saga. very poor

  • Comment number 12.

    Has this guy been paid to write this?

  • Comment number 13.

    'Wayne Rooney writes to Uefa in the hope of reducing potential punishment for red card at Montenegro'

    Yes, I'll be he did write it didn't he?

    And if he didn't, I would imagine that Uefa would view it as the engineered work that it is.

    That said, I saw someone raise the idea yesterday that UEFA would want it's 'commercial assets' there. Not that I'm cynical or anything.....

  • Comment number 14.

    Am just in shock at the events in South Africa. Idiot doesn't even begin to describe it. Imagine if England did that???

  • Comment number 15.

    This blog makes me want to cry. Please stick to commentating.

  • Comment number 16.

    3. Oui.

    12. Yes. You weren't paid to read it.

    And finally... The story about the lap of honour for Bafana Bafana after "qualifying" is absolutely hilarious.

  • Comment number 17.

    I'm not sure if completely to what #1 is referring to but if it is South Africa then he is referring to the 2003 Cricket World Cup when South Africa wrongly misred the Duckworth-Lewis sheet and believed 229 after 45 overs was the winning score when in fact it was the par score.

    South Africa reached 229 after 44.5 overs and their batsman defended the final ball believing that was all required to win the match (had he been out the score would have been higher) and the rain duly fell at the end of the 45th over.

  • Comment number 18.

    Maybe Capello said before the game that he wouldn't play anyone who got a red card in the friendlies, and Rooney jumped at the chance to miss a few games for a team he clearly doesn't want to play for.

  • Comment number 19.

    ahh. Journalists carrying on with the abuse of Rooney. it's quite funny really. I mean hes out for 1 or 2 games of the Euro 2012 group stages. What does that really say about England's team if they can;t cope without him for that long...
    Also funny how the FA are going to all this trouble to get the ban kept to 1 game. Yet despite Rooney coming out and apologising about swearing to the CAMERA!? he was banned for 2 games ( misses Cup semi final against City, united loss) . So what can one deduce from that, swearing to referees and opposition (happens every week) is acceptable but dont say the f word twice to a camera guys!

    Also it baffles me how dangerous lunges and studs up challenges can at times warrant just a yellow but a petulant kick out which causes no harm is met with a red. Its because of this that I believe Rooney should definitely only be banned for one game.

  • Comment number 20.

    I have to say that it's really great to see an unheralded country like Niger qualifying for the African Nations Cup for the first time in their history.

    I don't think that anybody would have remotely considered Niger to be challenging for qualification before the start of qualifying, but it's nice to see new teams appear at the finals tournament, especially at the expense of teams like Cameroon and Nigeria (who are filled with European, and, in particular, EPL- based show ponies who don't have the fight and determination that most of these country's citizens would bleed for).

  • Comment number 21.

    By the way, is there any chance that we could have a different photo of Rooney's sending-off against Montenegro?

    That same photo has been used 3 times to illustrate recent BBC blogs. :)

    At least it showcases Wayne's good technique, even when he's not having a kick at the ball. ;)

  • Comment number 22.

    When we remember some comments about the "great sides" of Europe yesterday, we've had some interesting results tonight.

    The great French side that beat England at Wembley IN A FRIENDLY managed a home draw against Bosnia Herzegovina. Put it together with the cheating attempt of you know who against Ireland, add the miserable participation at the World Cup (deserved for cheaters) and you see tonight's France's result as a normality in the state French football finds itself today.

    Netherlands played away in a more testing than average fixture and lost to Sweden.

    Still, tomorrow, it will be only Capelo's head demanded on a plate. Funny.

  • Comment number 23.

    @ The_soul_patch_of_David_Villa,

    pet, you're late

  • Comment number 24.

    why do people still think rooney is good in international football?

  • Comment number 25.

    Well maybe Rooney had heard of the 2000 job cuts at the BBC and decided to give you bloggers a hand. This is the 3rd or 4th blog on him and the red card on this site since it happened, so it's keeping you lot in a job eh Steve. You's are pathetic.

    As a United fan, If Rooney had done this playing for United, (and he has done in the past), I think yeah, he's an idiot, but I still want him to play for us. I think the same as an England fan, but the majority of other England fans, ie the ABU's, they're calling for him to never get picked again. Fine, suits me as a United fan, means he'll have the summer off again and he'll be fresh for United again next year.

    Maybe, just maybe, the problem with the England team is a lack of all of us sticking together? the players on the pitch, the fans in the stadium. The players looked scared in the 2nd half, and it's why Montenegro were able to take control of the game and make us look like beginners.

    All this Rooney business is also keeping Soul_Patch busy, I didn't think it possible for one person to spout so much anti English attitude in such a short space of time.

    Seriously Soul_patch, for somebody who has nothing good to say about the English game, fans, players, managers, you spend hours and hours on these boards talking about us.

    If Spain is so good, why not spend your energy on Spanish blog sites praising your team, it'd be more constructive and we wouldn't have to read the bile you come out with. Know what i mean? foxtrot oscar.

  • Comment number 26.

    16

    but we pay for this so feel obliged to read it although it's just copy n paste wot a thousand others have done.

  • Comment number 27.

    That South Africa gaff, you have to laugh................

    That Rooney Gaff, you have to la............ oh wait, he's allegedly England's best player, so what's funny, or non newsworthy about that?

    Utd fans need to grow a pair and stop whining every time one of their 'precious ones' gets the treatment they deserve for being out of order.

    Sadly one suspects that Utd fans expect the same rule to be applied in intentional football as in the EPL - Rule 301 'no utd player shall be booked or sent off or judged offside no matter how obvious the infraction'. ;)

  • Comment number 28.

    It's a shame that a split-second lapse in discipline from a young man who had learnt that day his Dad was under criminal investigation and therefore had to be under unusual levels of stress will be so bad for the country. The reality is that the mooted England line-ups sans Rooney - with Bent or Carroll at the top of the formation - do look extremely light. There is an over-reliance on these 'star' players in the England set-up whose every action in the run-up to major tournaments is the subject of headlines/blogs/vilification. We should recall that when we actually won a tournament, the main man - Geoff Hurst - was at the fringes of the team and burst through. We can only cross our fingers.

  • Comment number 29.

    I just wondered where the endless blogs and articles on Kevin Doyle's sending off are, with people having a pop at him for being overpaid, out of control and over-aggressive, or the debate is on whether Giovanni Trapattoni can trust his centre forward and whether he's a liability in big games.

    What? Doyle isn't as big a star as Rooney and Ireland aren't as reliant on him as England are on Rooney? Well I never.

  • Comment number 30.

    @ 27 "Nelly"

    Not speaking for all utd fans, but I have to agree with the views of neville and scholes. Playing for england with the rest of the "golden generation" was a waste of time and they achieved far more playing for Man Utd. It would be more beneficial to their careers to retire from internationals and concentrate on club football.
    It would save them from being castigated by english fans for acts of indiscretion (england still qualified top btw so the red card had no real impact).
    Allow utd to have fresher players for important league & champs league games.
    AND give armchair pundits more ammo for their anti united jibes, probably calling utd unpatriotic or whatever else.
    A win win sitaution for all!!

  • Comment number 31.

    Comment number 28.At 09:53 12th Oct 2011, kentspur wrote:
    There is an over-reliance on these 'star' players in the England set-up whose every action in the run-up to major tournaments is the subject of headlines/blogs/vilification. We should recall that when we actually won a tournament, the main man - Geoff Hurst - was at the fringes of the team and burst through. We can only cross our fingers

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

    I agree with your general point, but Hurst was not the main man in 66- he scored a hat trick in the final yes but he wasn't the most important player. England had three world class players in their team when they won the World Cup, right at the spine of the team: Gordon Banks, Bobby Moore and Bobby Charlton. They were the main men. It's the only occasion that England have had more than one or two genuine world class players. At the moment England only has one, Rooney.

  • Comment number 32.

    @ 27 Nelly,
    Despite the numerous blogs and the 100's/1000's of comments, I haven't read one comment from a Utd fan saying he didn't deserve to get sent off. So not sure what your point is other than just another ABU rant.

    My only beef with it is the ranting from people like you who don't think he is our best player, and don't want him to be picked again becuase he got sent off. If he retires from international tomorrow, all you lot will then come out in force again and complain how he's letting his country down blah blah blah.

    Rooney's sending off hid the far more worrying issue for England, just how bad we are as a team passing the ball, keeping the ball, and having any mental strength whatsoever. Every player seems to shrivel up and cower in the corner scared of the ball when they put on an England shirt. they're all far too frightened of making a mistake to go out and play football. Maybe you can blame Rooney for that too?

  • Comment number 33.

    Completely agree with BaconandEgg2wice. Watching the Rep Ireland-Armenia game last night, it struck me how even Armenia are better at technical play and keeping possession than England are, even when they went down to 10 men, which is damning. That's the real scandal and not endless debate on individual players.

  • Comment number 34.

    The problem boils down to (and I notice it more and more watching england play at home) is that if the team starts knocking it about around the back four and midfield, you can hear how impatient the fans become and start clamouring for a forward pass, which results in a speculative direct ball and gives away the possession. Watching spain last night it contrasted how comfortable they were to patiently build up play, drag opposition out of position and play a killer one two. The second silva goal being an excellent example. England fans place too high expectations, expect to see 40 yard hollywood passes to split defences wide open, and blame star players when results don't match their expectations. Did uruguay fans victimise suarez for his handball in the world cup? or french fans on zidane for his sending off v italy? or in 2002 world cup?

  • Comment number 35.

    Didnt watch the game was out at a meal for my wifes birthday, we checked the score and saw we were two nil up. I said then we will Lose or draw, we have to accept that we conceed possesion to easily and can not keep the ball. Heard about the Rooney sending off the next day, not suprised really but dont see the need to keep going on about it. At the end of the day the jobs done we have qualified and Rooney will probably miss one game big deal. Even as a Liverpool fan I would say rooney needs to be playing as he has undoubted talent and we need the best players available as we will struggle at the Euro's regardless of who we pick. Like to see england do well as it lifts the spirit of the nation and anything that does that is welcome, however cant wait to see some real football over the weekend.

  • Comment number 36.

    @35

    Ditto. Can't wait for the weekend and the EPL, the best league in the world!

    As always after an international break, from a Utd point of view anyway, it will be interesting to see SAF's team selection.
    The England boys have had a 'rest' having played last Friday so if fit will probably start.
    Nani, Vidic, Fletcher all played Tuesday so we will have to wait and see.

    I hope he sticks with the Rooney, Young and Nani combo.
    Although, Nani will have to stay away from 'chopper' Carragher if possible.
    Well, away from his studs anyway.

    Rumour has it Gerrard could start. He always raises his game for Man Utd.

    The uncertainty makes picking your FF team impossible.

  • Comment number 37.

    Looking forward to the game, would settle for a draw as we have had a decent run against utd. A loss would knock our some what fragile confidence. A win would be a confidence boost and may finally give us the confidence to go full throttle at the lesser teams.

  • Comment number 38.

    'Rooney is writing to Uefa to try and influence them to only award him a one match ban' ---what utter tripe you couldn't make it up could you?
    How can anybody anywhere in football defend the indefesnsible? Rooney clearly used force in his assault against the player and it certainly constituted violent conduct.
    If Rooney does get a reprieve then it will set a prescidence where any other player in the future might posibly do the same thing and write a letter to the authorities 'creeping' up to them pleading for mercy! as I say 'YOU JUST COULDN'T MAKE IT UP'

  • Comment number 39.

    @ Zeemo

    Spot on! FF for me is a write off this week unless utd get a 4-3 win, (team consists of j enrique, p jones, nani, rooney & suarez).

    In terms of tactics, I hope he plumps for 4-3-3 with nani, rooney and young up front, and fletcher, anderson & cleverly (if he's fit, anybody but carrick, another member of the "no short passes to keep possesion club"). We can see how well we come up against a team we've failed to beat at anfield for 4 years. Interesting to see if we exploite their so called lack of mobility in the centre of midfield? any thoughts on lucas & adam so far?

  • Comment number 40.

    Adam has been unlucky some decent shots have hit the bar or post, he is worth having on the pitch for free kicks and corners and his passing is decent(nowhere near Alosnso standard yet though). Lucas will continue to do his effective unspectacular role of breaking up play and passing the ball off. He may give away the odd freekick but considering the amount of tackles he makes its a very small percentage. Another part of his game is he always makes himself available for a pass if a player is under pressure and can provide neat little one twos to get the ball moving again.

  • Comment number 41.

    22. At 23:12 11th Oct 2011, Football_UK [aka Eddie Izzrd live at the Apollo] wrote:

    The great French side that beat England at Wembley IN A FRIENDLY managed a home draw against Bosnia Herzegovina.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Bosnia are a decent side. Only the arrogant English types would sneerily dismiss a side based on their own personal ignorance of the said team.

    France got the point to secure qualification. Job done.

    As for your despicable insinuations about a class act and legend such as Thierry Henry - well, I'd be lying if I said that I'd expect better from you.

    How is intentionally handling the ball (an incident which you see thousands of times every season) somehow worse if it leads to a decisive goal against the ''honorary English'' Republic of Ireland team?

    This is why the myth of the English being upholders of ''fair play'' is a complete joke. The average England fan is hypocritical, illogical and dishonest when pontificating about ''fair play''.

    Guess what? Robbie Keane got correctly penalised in the same game for ''deliberate handball''. So if any English fan can actually logically tell me why Robbie attempting to gain an advantage by handling the ball is any better than Thierry's same infraction, then I'd be eternally grateful.

  • Comment number 42.

    24. At 01:41 12th Oct 2011, JayButler1 wrote:

    why do people still think rooney is good in international football?
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Because Sky Sports and the red-top tabloids keep on telling them so.

    The average English fan is like a Basset Hound eagerly and unquestioningly lapping up his bowl of milk (eg. Sky Sports and tabloid propaganda).

  • Comment number 43.

    @39

    Same with the Liverpool line up.
    Who is fit after the internationals will decide KD's line up and formation as well. Bellamy and Kuyt could be rested. As could Adam. Especially with Gerrard back.

    What ever the line ups, Im looking forward to it.

    As for FF, im the last person to ask, the season I'm having.
    My luck has deserted me.
    I have Given and Krul as my keepers.
    When I pick one, its the other that keeps a clean sheet!
    Got it wrong every time!

  • Comment number 44.

    @42

    Good impression of a Basset hound yourself, lapping up the idea that every England fan is arrogant and unaware of any other side in the international game.

    Don't you think we realise that England aren't a great team and are not going to win a title for a good few years? Spain get loads of praise from the media too.

    ...but no - you keep on slagging us off. Lots of bitterness in your posts - you need to look at yourself for a change.

  • Comment number 45.

    Whats happened to the Rooney of 2004,at that stage he looked like a world beater at international level,since then he seems to have lost his way...??????

  • Comment number 46.

    42 soul

    u crack me up mate, keep it coming. so true

  • Comment number 47.

    yeah hilarious. Keep the boring anti england generalisations.

    Read 44 Meido. (oh no you won't because you like to believe the media, not the fans..)

  • Comment number 48.

    Rooney was an idiot for doing what he did. But I still think we need him for the Euros as he is by far and away our best forward.

    On another note, with regards to the England team. The problem seems to be that we have an age issue within the squad.

    What I mean by this is that we have a gap in the squad, we have the likes of Terry, Gerrard, Lampard & Rio who are experienced but getting a bit old & slow. Then we have the likes of Wiltshere, Young, Smalling, Jones, Cahill & Walcott who are young, fast and technically good but have little to no experience. The only one that lands in the "Sweet Spot" is the nutter who decided to get himself sent off last Friday.

    There is no middle ground, which I think is a product of previous managers always picking the "Golden Generation".

    Look at Spain they have many players in this "sweet spot". Germany whilst a young team they have plenty of experience as they started them young.

    The way I see it, this problem with England started back in the 90's.

  • Comment number 49.

    @48

    That has always been the problem, my friend.
    With England there is know middle ground.

    It's "You need to have over 30's in the team for experience".
    And "You need to have youth in the team for the future".

    Picking the best team, on form at the time of the match irrespective of age is alien to England.

  • Comment number 50.

    Will London keep moving during the Games?
    12:54pm on 12 Oct 2011 The_soul_patch_of_David_Villa wrote:
    The problem with the English transport ''system'' is that it's basically pub-standard.
    ---

    Blimey Soul Patch, you just live for slagging off England don't you. How sad a life you must have.
    I'll ask you again, why are you constantly on the BBC blogs slagging off England, English people, English fans, English footballers, English managers, and even our transport system now?
    Is there no Spanish blogs you can go and occupy and comment on?

  • Comment number 51.

    47

    i read it and now quickly despatched from my mind forever.

  • Comment number 52.

    Comment number 46. At 13:04 12th Oct 2011, Meido wrote:
    42 soul

    u crack me up mate, keep it coming. so true

    complain about this comment (comment number 46)
    -----------------------------------------
    Soul_

    Looks like you have a fan.
    A couple more and you'll need an agent, manager, PR guy and everything.

    Hope you don't forget us when you're rich and famous!

  • Comment number 53.

    45.At 13:03 12th Oct 2011, dur1 wrote:
    Whats happened to the Rooney of 2004,at that stage he looked like a world beater at international level,since then he seems to have lost his way...??????
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Rooney is a far better player than he was in 2004. You can see that evidence week in week out over the past few years. Then though he was a youngster unjaded by the fact that the team was not reliant on him- there was less pressure. I also don't believe he was fully fit at the 2006 and 2010 tournaments, he was rushed back from injuries because we were desperate to have him.

    Rooney is a fantastic player, for anyone who doubts it look at what he can do when he's fit and firing- he can be your Alan Shearer type centre forward or drop deep and create like Sheringham, or even be a midfield playmaker like Gascoigne. It's like three players in one. Unfortunately these days our defence is shaky, we can't keep possession in midfield and we don't have a world class striker to partner Rooney. It's not Rooney who has lost his way, its England.

  • Comment number 54.

    @ 50

    Give credit to soul, he is incredibly persistent!! From the blogs I am trying to work out where he is from. He reminds me of another blogger, "CHAY" who used the Times Online interactive forum to rile up others with comments such as "man utd are a feeder club for real madrid" etc etc. To which he got some obvious rebuttals.

    In a way it is a good way, albeit from a metophorical periscope, to see what nationals outside of the UK think / perceive english people, and their sports teams. Keep the comical posts up!!

  • Comment number 55.

    How dare u slag of soul man, he,s the voice of knowledge. He has no knowledge and football sense but he,s a trier and u can,t knock that. He,s perfect for England some1 who tries a lot but gets nowhere. Sound like the team its self.

  • Comment number 56.

    49.At 13:38 12th Oct 2011, Zeemo wrote:

    "Picking the best team, on form at the time of the match irrespective of age is alien to England."

    I agree to an extent on this point, I agree that form should be considered but it should be a "what has he done in the last 5-10 games?" not just the last couple of games.

    E.g.
    Gerrard plays 10 games in which Liverpool win 4, draw 5 and lose 1. Gerrard scores twice and has played well (7/10 over 10 games).
    Lampard plays 2 games against Bolton & QPR and bangs in 4 goals and sets up 2 more. However he has only played 2x 60 minutes in the last 3 months.

    I would pick Gerrard on this basis to play for England.

  • Comment number 57.

    goals-Galore a football annorak i feel

  • Comment number 58.

    No..53....U must be a manx??? Your so blinkered in your views, making excuses for Rooney by saying its every1,s else fault. 2004 rooney done what he was there for scoring goals,since then he seems so intent in playing everwhere except up front,who does he think he is?????. He is a great player given, but come on he needs to do his job for the team,not try to do every1.s jobs. I suppose it was everybodys elses fault he kicked out and got sent off. Those rose tinted glasses take em off and bin them,they are disturbing that brain cell u have.

  • Comment number 59.

    I feel as though we live in a strange nation.

    On one hand, you've got our "society representatives acting for the good of the nation" with cutting edge "investigative journalism". That in essence means they'll uncover an "exclusive" about a footballer boning his neighbour while his wife shops his money away and talking up our "wonderful, bulldog-spirited" sportsmen and women and then realising when it all goes belly up we're not that good but that won't stop us being just as ridiculous the next major event!

    Then we have the fans. "We're totally useless, nothing will ever change, root and branch review needed, foreign players killing the game" yet will still fork out ridiculous fees for Wembley stadium and Sky TV.

    And finally the players. So high on their own sense of worth, they get bored in South Africa or distracted in Germany or worse still not even qualify in a group of nations playing the game for only 20 years!

    But of course, we'll suck as usual, blame Capello, get Redknapp in and shout at him when he fails too.

    Happy days.

  • Comment number 60.

    52 zeemo

    ye i like folk who make me laugh coz most others are dull

  • Comment number 61.

    I really hope Rooney gets a long ban-he deserves it. As for England, as a supporter for over 40 yrs standing ive never felt so depressed about our chances at a tournament. How on earth FIFA rate us as 4th in the world..well yll have to ask them. Who are the 3 above us? Holland, Spain, Brazil??? What about Uruguay? What about germany who hammered us 4-1 just 16mths ago? It is beyond belief we're in the top 10 let alone 4th.
    Rooney cannot be rated as a top player as he has done nothing at any international tournament save for Euro 2004 (for the same reason btw, i have doubts about Messi who for some reason has not performed at international tournaments).
    Capello needs to shake off the caution and go for youth. He needs to drop Terry (one of the worst CBs in world football), Lampard, gerrard and Barry. How Barry's name can be mentioned i just dont know. Wait for it because at poland/Ukraine next summer we're in for yet more embarrassment following SA 2010 and the debacle of the rugby in NZ. If you thought Scotland were outclassed by Spain last night wait till you see us next yr. Once again there'll be calls for root and branch reform, once again those calls will be muted as soon as PL season starts in August.

  • Comment number 62.

    Your so blinkered in your views, making excuses for Rooney by saying its every1,s else fault. 2004 rooney done what he was there for scoring goals,since then he seems so intent in playing everwhere except up front,who does he think he is????? He is a great player given, but come on he needs to do his job for the team,not try to do every1.s jobs. I suppose it was everybodys elses fault he kicked out and got sent off.

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

    I think the point he was trying to make was that everything wrong with the England team at the moment seems to be Rooney's fault. We were rubbish in the World Cup because of Rooney, weren't great in the qualifiers because of Rooney and now seemingly won't do anything at the Euro's because of Rooney's red card. There are 10 other players in the team that have contributed arguably less in that time that don't get any flak. Some new players need time to settle in admittedly Jones, Smalling, Sturridge, maybe Carroll etc but others like Lampard, Gerrard, Barry, Defoe, Terry etc have not once stepped up when Rooney has been poor.

  • Comment number 63.

    I didn't actually realise this was a new blog...

    Good performance from Silva last night. Pure class. Worth more than his weight in gold (cause lets face it, he's only pocket sized).

  • Comment number 64.

    No..62.. Not blaming Rooney for all the shortcomings of England, but by trying to Play up front then in midfield isn,t helping the teams balance all he is doing is filling up midfield and leaving us short up front when we do have decent ball. I would love to see him just concentrate on scoring goals.He needs to trust those behind him to provide service,but within minutes of kick off there he is centre mid spraying balls out wide......WHY????????.

  • Comment number 65.

    @64

    With Bent starting up front with him there's a good chance he was instructed to do so. Maybe it was Capellos instuctions when he did his team talk. Who knows?

    After all it is the role of a 'number 10'.
    Is he better playing up front where Bent was than the 'number 10' role?
    That's the question.

  • Comment number 66.

    @60 Meido

    Well you know what they say about small things and small minds and all that?
    ;-)

  • Comment number 67.

    He needs to trust those behind him to provide service,but within minutes of kick off there he is centre mid spraying balls out wide......WHY????????.

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

    You might want to address that question to Fabio Capello. He never seems to tell Rooney to stay up front suggesting that maybe he wants him to drop deep and pick the passes?

  • Comment number 68.

    No....65.....Maybe, but can,t see it. Its happening all the time. Would love to see him playing in the hole as they say, 2 u p top with wayne causing problems behind them. Rotating ashley young out wide on either wing,ditching Downing to the bench,this giving wayne more influence on the game,giving us a more fluid formation also wayne can drop deeper when we don,t have the ball. Capello,s rigid 4-4-2 in my view dosn,t suit Rooney and stiffles his Talent.This would hopefully stop the frustration he feels when the game is passing him by...

  • Comment number 69.

    No....67....Well lets face it Capello,s a joke really,Doubt very much Wayne listens to him much anyway. Capello just dosn,t inspire the players there is no inspiration with the guy no off the cuff things to get the pulse racing,it.s all very cold and regimented in what he does,mangering by numbers id call it.And boy is he earning some numbers, F.A should hang their heads in shame,sticking with Capello has cost us 2 yrs of development and with the whole country and the players to some extent just treading water waiting for him depart these shores.

  • Comment number 70.

    @68

    That's a tactic that is available for Capello but I have to say Rooney in the hole with 2 up front as well as young out wide?
    And when you say rotate young I assume you mean with another wide man?
    That just leaves one other midfielder.
    Very very attack minded approch.

    That would leave England outnumbered in centre mid and wide-open.
    It would guarantee goals though.

    Unfortunately most of them would be for the opposition!
    Rooney in the hole with 1 up top would be a better option, methinks.

  • Comment number 71.

    44. At 13:02 12th Oct 2011, LU7_RED wrote:

    Don't you think we realise that England aren't a great team and are not going to win a title for a good few years?
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    You just confirm my point about the arrogance of the average English fan:

    ''not going to win a title for a good few years''

    Why not just be honest with yourself, and accurately state: ''Don't you think we realise that England are a pub team and are not going to win a title again... ever?''

  • Comment number 72.

    52. At 13:43 12th Oct 2011, Zeemo wrote:
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I don't wish to sound arrogant (I leave that to people from a certain underachieving sporting nation from an island off the coast of France), but I would imagine that knowledgeable football lovers and aficionados would appreciate my impartial and objective analysis of the beautiful game on these blogs.

  • Comment number 73.

    63. At 15:35 12th Oct 2011, prophet_samuel wrote:

    Good performance from Silva last night. Pure class. Worth more than his weight in gold (cause lets face it, he's only pocket sized).
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    David is a model pro who is utterly wasted in the EPL!

    Still, it'll only be a year or two before he steps back in to the big-time, playing for a team which actually merits his talent, like Real Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia or Levante.

    Also, shouldn't he be worth his weight in ''silver'' rather than ''gold''?

  • Comment number 74.

    No....70... No Young alternating wings,Lets say GERRARD and WILTSHIRE centre with Rooney operating between the 2. Still leaves us 4 in the middle when we don,t have the ball,but gives us more options with Rooney when we have the ball. Rooney in the hole with 1 up front,that seems to be what we are doing now aint it,and im sure its not working. Teams at the mo can stifle Rooney leaving our best player inaffective. May not work but hey what we are doing now dosn,t so lets get a bit more dynamic in our approach,may be fun to watch.

  • Comment number 75.

    54. At 14:03 12th Oct 2011, eduard_streltsov_ghost wrote:

    He reminds me of another blogger, "CHAY" who used the Times Online interactive forum to rile up others with comments such as "man utd are a feeder club for real madrid"
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Why would you consider a perfectly reasonable comment like that to be an attempt to ''rile up'' others?

    Just a cursory glance at transfer activity over the last 5 years or so would offer strong support to the notion that Manchester United are little more than a feeder club for Spanish gargantuans, Real Madrid.

  • Comment number 76.

    Maybe some of us have work to do and scanning over 5 yrs of transfer activity between united and the carlos kickabout clubs we would find rather boring. But boring as we know is what u deal in. Why not join in the subject at hand rather then going European at a drop of a sombrero. FORGOT YOU WON,T COMMENT BACK TO THIS U HAVE NO FOOTBALLS.

  • Comment number 77.

    76. At 17:11 12th Oct 2011, dur1 wrote:
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    You only need to look at the transfers of Heinze, van Nistelrooy and CR9 to understand my point. Also, Beckham, only about 8 years ago.

    With the like of Hernandez and Nani set to step up in class and move to Real Madrid in the near future, then it's very difficult to see United as anything other than a training club for future Real pros.

  • Comment number 78.

    75

    It's no wonder some United players go to Real Madrid though, it's hard work lifting all those trophies every season at Old Trafford. Some of them are really quite heavy. You don't get that problem at the Bernabéu anymore, not since they've dropped into the group of 'also-rans' with other gargantuans like Sporting Gijon and Numancia.

  • Comment number 79.

    78. At 17:32 12th Oct 2011, We all follow United wrote:

    It's no wonder some United players go to Real Madrid though, it's hard work lifting all those trophies every season at Old Trafford.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Yeah, just like the players of Skonto Riga must get sore arms after winning so many Latvian trophies!

    As for Real losing to the likes of Gijon and Levante (Numancia play in La Liga Segunda nowadays, by the way) - then it just shows how competitive the best league in the world is.

    You have the two undisputed best club sides in the world competing in the same league, and they are still regularly tested (and often drop points against) classy outfits like Real Sociedad, Racing Santander and Levante.

    How the EPL fans must wish that their league had the same quality and unpredictability! Instead, it's a weekly snoozefest: Manchester United 7 pub team 0. Pub team 0 Manchester City 8. Oh, what drama(!)

  • Comment number 80.

    No...77... HOOORAI... Got a response. Serious question,why do your comments always go back to whats going on in europe.????

  • Comment number 81.

    You have the two undisputed best club sides in the world competing in the same league, and they are still regularly tested

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

    Well there's THE best team in Europe from the Nou Camp then 19 also-rans feeding on whatever scraps Barcelona might leave them. It's a sorry sight really, I remember when Real Madrid used to win things (apart from the Spanish equivalent of the Carling Cup i.e Barcelona's scraps) and win in style. The long ball dross on show there now from cloggers like Khedeira and Pepe is a far cry from around 5 years ago. It's no suprise they're no longer feared, more a cash cow for players with already bulging trophy cabinets from big clubs like United, AC Milan and Lyon.

  • Comment number 82.

    81. At 20:26 12th Oct 2011, We all follow United wrote:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Any semblance of credibility you may have been clinging on to has now disintegrated after your bizarre comment about Khedira being a ''clogger''.

    Sami's a classy pro who would walk into any team in the world. It just so happens he's playing for the second best club side on Earth.

  • Comment number 83.

    Sami's a classy pro who would walk into any team in the world.

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

    He certainly moves at walking pace.

  • Comment number 84.

    83. At 21:10 12th Oct 2011, We all follow United wrote:

    Sami's a classy pro who would walk into any team in the world.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Such bitterness!

    You're probably still smarting from when Sami controlled the English midfield shambles at the last World Cup, and made the England midfield look - to be perfectly blunt here - like they were pub standard.

  • Comment number 85.

    80. At 17:49 12th Oct 2011, dur1 wrote:

    Serious question,why do your comments always go back to whats going on in europe.????
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I try to stay on topic.

    If you through the history of the BBC blogs which I've contributed to, then you'll find that - more often than not - it's other posters who are itching to talk about Real, Barca and all things Spanish in the world of football.

    I very rarely bring these topics up, but only respond to the catty and jealous remarks from English fans who can barely contain themselves from talking about Real, Barca, Spain and La Liga.

  • Comment number 86.

    Three blogs on Rooney and not a single one of them questioning whether a player whose father had just been arrested for a serious crime should have even played. Can my foot become a BBC journalist as it certainly gives an equatable insight into matters...

  • Comment number 87.

    85. At 21:38 12th Oct 2011, The_soul_patch_of_David_Villa wrote:
    80. At 17:49 12th Oct 2011, dur1 wrote:

    Serious question,why do your comments always go back to whats going on in europe.????
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I try to stay on topic.

    If you through the history of the BBC blogs which I've contributed to, then you'll find that - more often than not - it's other posters who are itching to talk about Real, Barca and all things Spanish in the world of football.

    ----

    You realise that if we click on your name we can read all your previous posts on all previous blogs? and that by doing that we can see you are fos. Not that we needed to read any of your previous posts to confirm that, reading just one of your posts is enough.

    Having said that, i've read your last few replies to some of the comments here (i notice you are avoiding answering my simple question about why you come on BBC to sl@g of everything English instead of going onto Spanish blogs to talk all things Spanish), it is clear you are just a troll looking for attention, just like a baby cries, you spout rubbish hoping for a reaction. Well, this my last reaction. understand what I mean? foxtrot oscar.

  • Comment number 88.

    @82 soul_

    Khedieri?
    Good player but he's no Paul Scholes though!

    And Pepe?
    A poor mans Vinny Jones!
    Didn't he get a 12 game ban for assaulting 3 players after fouling one of them and giving away a penalty?

    The kind of behaviour you see up and down Spain on a Sunday morning from someone playing for the "Perro y Pato"!

  • Comment number 89.

    You're probably still smarting from when Sami controlled the English midfield shambles at the last World Cup

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

    What you mean he's marginally better than Gareth Barry? Give that man a medal! He'd probably accept it, playing for an also-ran means they're few and far between these days.

  • Comment number 90.

    66 zeemo

    not really, ellaborate dear zeemo. illuminate my thursday morning with your wisdom.

  • Comment number 91.

    England are average with Wayne Rooney, and they are average without Wayne Rooney. If he is banned for 1 game or 2, it will not change the fact that we will not win Euro 2012 #FACT

  • Comment number 92.

    91. At 10:48 13th Oct 2011, king_pin1 wrote:
    England are average with Wayne Rooney, and they are average without Wayne Rooney. If he is banned for 1 game or 2, it will not change the fact that we will not win Euro 2012 #FACT

    --
    I think 99% of English fans agree with that.
    However, that will not stop us supporting our team when we get to the finals, nor will it stop us hoping that we could, by some miracle, win. Having hope and supporting your team is not arrogance.

  • Comment number 93.

    No..91... Maybe we are average. But history tells u not the best teams always win tournaments,take denmark and greece in the euro,s,so whilst we are there u never know for sure.

  • Comment number 94.

    The biggest problem for England is that the media make the team believe they are a one man team. Before it was Beckham as the star, now Rooney. Lampard and Gerrard always looked to either mimmick (badly) what Beckham would do (long range laser guided passes that floated out for goal kicks) or just take the easy option and pass to him to get themselves off the ball.

    Now everyone relies on Rooney digging them out of a hole, and no player can achieve that these days because the game has changed.

    Without Rooney for a couple of games, the team will be forced to work as a unit and others will have to step up into the breach. Hopefully Gerrard will be ready, and Wilshere fit.

    Around Rooney now is the best team in a while, but they don't get enough time together to gel. The best players are the best players, regardless of form, but you have to pick the players that compliment each other, just as Lampard and Gerrard have failed to every time, not just the best individuals.

    Young can do a Rooney job for those games, with Johnson (maybe Cleverley) on the left, Lennon (maybe Downing) on the right, and someone mobile like Walcott, Welbeck or Sturridge up front.

    As far as Rooney being no longer the player he looked in 2004, just statements are just dumb. Honestly, the only thing that has changed is he is now jaded for England. Like a striker who gives up running into the box for a cross that never comes, he has gotten used to the complete lack of threat or ball keeping from midfield and no longer expects to receive the ball in the most dangerous areas because the team systematically fail to find him. Put players around him that he clicks with, be that Young, Welbeck and Cleverley, or others who know how to link up, he will sparkle.

    No coincidence that Messi also fails to set the world alight for his national side.

  • Comment number 95.

    Red card is a 3 match ban, why would the FA feel the need to contest it. Its not as though it was an unwarranted red. If Rooney is ineligible for 3 games, he'd be a waste of a squad place. If England depend on him so much, which doesn't seem to be the case given the entire teams poor performance in qualifying, then they'll not get anywhere near sniffing distance of winning the Euros.

  • Comment number 96.

    stop feeding the troll

  • Comment number 97.

    away from the rooney debate for just 5 seconds...

    Does anyone else know why Kia Joorabchian is commenting to the press and i quote, 'there was mistranslation' in Tevez's refuseal to play against Munich?
    You dont have to be a genuis to know that Carlos can speak English...well!
    He has played in England for enough years and his team mates can speak the language.
    But he is that arrogant he will not speak to any of the press, fans or the public. Which in my opinon is a disgrace to our nation, to the premier league and its spectators.

    Its a discrace and lets hope Tevez's is gone in January and his monkey too.

  • Comment number 98.

    i'm not entirely convinced by the Mancini bandwagon either. Reminds me of the Knox case a little. Tevez on the bench doesn't respond like someone refusing to play, more like he's either been asked to warm up and says that he already has, or being asked if he's ok to play and replies that he doesn't feel too good.

    Being a United supporter, i'm not exactly upset that City and Tevez should be having the trouble, but i think he's been shafted because of the transfer saga and to strengthen the overrated Mancini's position.

 

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