Comments for en-gb 30 Wed 23 Jul 2014 16:42:24 GMT+1 A feed of user comments from the page found at bravesophia001 This post has been Removed Thu 31 Jul 2008 13:23:07 GMT+1 U7194339 for those of you who can remember.wilf mcguiness. nice guy but probably headed the ball to much.sir matt again, god rest his soul, done it all but selfish of us to ask him to do it again.frank o'farrell, who?tommy doc, red army years but couldn't keep it in his trousers and melted in the arms of mary.dave sexton. keep the ball lads. ok boss but what do we do with it? i'm workin on that.fat ron. tactics? what tactics, just enjoy yourselves while i try and get the dugout moved to the sunny side of the pitch. oh, and stay away from them coloured guys.then along came taggart. gets his hands on silver more times than roy rogers.remember who told you.i'm off now, time to skin up.Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrf...................... Sat 26 Jul 2008 23:58:15 GMT+1 U7194339 please be warned that although my broadband connection is futuristic, i like my football strictly 70's style. so come and av a go if you're bright enough. chelsea fans needn't bother.Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrf. Sat 26 Jul 2008 23:18:44 GMT+1 U7194339 is it true that joe coles fav song is that old george formby classic, WHEN I'M LICKING WINDOWS. Sat 26 Jul 2008 22:11:14 GMT+1 U7194339 chelsea = johnnycomelately's and just like jcedge, quitters. you couldn't wind your kids toys up never mind offer a justifiable opinion. even that one-armed numpty that used to follow you put up a better fight.feel my wrath. Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrf. superstars come and go but the might of manchester united continues to set the and weep.and by the way, the media will run rings round scolari, they've already got one hand on his shoulder and one in his pocket. taggart will drive him to distraction by xmas, he's already reeled mcnulty in. Sat 26 Jul 2008 21:56:46 GMT+1 Red_Nic I think the fact people are even debating such irrelevant and boring quotes or misquotes shows how sh11te a pre-season this has been.BUT if i was Scolari i would be focusing on bringing in younger players:Cech -26Bosingwa - 25Terry - 27Carvalho - 30Cole - 27Lampard - 30Ballack - 31Deco - 30Cole - 26Malouda -28Drogba - 30A lot of those are going to slowly deteriate physically and there isn't a great deal of signs that a lot of effort is being made to revamp that, its not far off AC Milan. Sat 26 Jul 2008 17:39:43 GMT+1 emsti I dont get why Chelsea will not let Lampard go, it will only reduce their average age. Sat 26 Jul 2008 16:51:20 GMT+1 Hughesaldinho McNulty many times do I have to come on here and read and totally irrellevant and untrue story....I think you should do your research a little better before commenting on the Greatest British boss ever.Must be a tad embarrassing to see Fergie didnt say any of that.Also, anybody talking about Chelsea as the big 2 is having a laugh...they might have finished 2nd in both competitions, but they will never be as big as Liverpool or Arsenal....although if Fergie comments on either team, you can be sure that McNumpty will be talking irrelevant nonsense about it on here, so thats something to look forward to. Sat 26 Jul 2008 15:56:40 GMT+1 jcedge Hahahahaha, brilliant. Delusional AND has an anger problem.You obviously U7194339 doesn't realise that other people can have their own opinions.Be careful everyone!!! If you suggest that Chelsea (one of the best teams in the world) have the slightest chance in winning the league, you will feel the wrath of U7194339! It's fun winding people like you up!!! xxxP.S. to everyone else (on both sides), thanks for the debate... I'm off now. Should be an interesting season. Hope you all enjoy it. Sat 26 Jul 2008 15:27:14 GMT+1 A wet windy night in Stoke Brazilian league is filled with players that Europe doesn't want or players that need 100 degree weather in order to look any good. You notice Kleberson is a star out there.________________________________What a joke! I don't see Bramble or Robinson playing in the Brazilian league. Jokes a side, a fully locally based Brazillian national side would beat the A - England side 10 out of 10 times. I would put £10 on that. No need to talk down Brazillian football.. Sat 26 Jul 2008 14:28:05 GMT+1 The unwilling POOR reporting from the BBC... if they had paid ANY attention, Sir Alex merely said that a lot of Chelsea players are 30yrs old and once you hit 30, you don't expect them to improve from then on. Which is true. He said they would be a threat just as much as Arsenal and Liverpool.The whole comment was taken out of context by the usual tabloid papers and Phil McNulty bought into it.I wonder of McNulty will now admit he was fooled by paper trash-talk? The kind who's reader's average mental age is 7 years old. Congratulations to Sky Sports News for correcting the comments. Sat 26 Jul 2008 12:28:26 GMT+1 redsinexile Why all the fuss? Who cares? I'm sure Chelsea don't! Sat 26 Jul 2008 12:16:55 GMT+1 Boring Boring Chelsea - only 103 GOALS After everything you've won last season and before, you still can't keep your precious Ronaldo, maybe he's so tired of handling the whole team while others just pick up their wages!anyway Chelsea have all it takes to make old Fergie shut his mouth! nuff said:) Sat 26 Jul 2008 12:13:34 GMT+1 JackMcMac As one of the oldest managers in the league, I'm not sure why Alex Ferguson would pull this mind game out the bag. Surely he should be trying to advocate the advantages and experiences of age. I wonder how predictable and stale Ferguson's tactics will be this season -especially now the younger Queiroz has left. Sat 26 Jul 2008 11:32:22 GMT+1 sunofnothing1981 RHINO44 comment 258 Exactly right. Whatever Fergie says, those who dislike him will always attempt to twist it into something resembling the arrogance, with with MUFC are supposed to be so liberally endowed.The fact is that Fergie did not make any comment which abused Chelsea - he actually makes a very good point, and anyone looking at the matter objectively will be forced to agree with him. The majority of Chelsea's side have passed their peak (which is around 28 for most players; goalkeepers and defenders often last longer), while players in the united squad have yet to reach a peak - his comments are based on the fact that Chelsea appear not to have remedied this situation with any signings.It is therefore entirely sensible for him to suggest that Chelsea won't be any 'better', as once a player has peaked he doesn't get better - there is a few years of plateau, followed by an inevitable decline. Thuis is what is happening at Chelsea.Incidentally, the Chelsea supporters saying we (Man U fans) feel 'threatened' by them have got it all wrong - I actually hope they are as good this season as they were last season. I absolutely love it when there is a strong challenge, it makes the season exciting, which is surely preferable to having any challenge fizzle out at Christmas. I hope Chelsea and Arsenal will give us a good fight this season - in such circumstances I actually don't mind not winning the title - gutted, certainly, but also buzzing from having had an exciting season. This isn't arrogance, but I got sick of having no challenge, so to see a Chelsea side as excellent as they have been since the last year of Ranieri's reign fills me with excitement and expectation.I believe - and hope - that Arsenal also come good this season, something they have been threatening for the last 2 seasons, and something which we all know is going to happen sooner or later. Arsenal have an excellent side, and were very unlcuky with the injuries they had last season, which decimated them at an important part of the season (they were actually more than decimated, in the literal sense)- they never recovered from it. Liverpool, meanwhile, will finish 4th - if no-one challenges them in the way Everton did. Actually, they'll be lucky to finish 4th; I expected more form them in the close season, but unfortunately they haven't strengthened their squad in a way that would see them become real challengers, and I think even Liverpool fans will admit this. Ashame, as I'd love to be fighting it out with Liverpool.Whatever, this season will still be great - there are going to be at least 3 excellent teams fighting it out, although I suspect our biggest challengers may hail from North London.Looking forward to a great season whatever happens :-) Sat 26 Jul 2008 11:10:53 GMT+1 U7194339 jcedge. if you think chelsea will let the football do the talking what are you doing on here resorting to moronic name calling. fact is, chelsea tried so hard last year and lost out to manchester united in two major competitions. no delusions there. trying so hard and losing out twice has a far more detrimental effect than trying hard and winning. you lot finished the season gutted whereas we are elated. be prepared for more misery and remember who told you. and cheer up, you will always have a chance as long as roman is renting you. Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrf. Fri 25 Jul 2008 19:26:11 GMT+1 jcedge I think Chelsea will let the football do the talking. It's what they're best at, not arguing with a miserable little scot and delusional Man United fans such as U7194339.Come on the Blues! Fri 25 Jul 2008 18:04:28 GMT+1 TAOFIKODUKOYA I feel Scolari shloud avoid the mind games for now and concentrate on building his team and posting an excellent performance in all competitions. We chelsea fans need that. Fri 25 Jul 2008 17:14:24 GMT+1 ShortImp There's no denying how close it was last season, it could have so easily been Chelsea, but it wasn't, some would put that down to luck and others would say they weren't good enough, which is quite harsh, considering it went down to the last day of the season and they lost out on penalties in the Champions League.So this year to avoid just missing out again or losing out on 'luck', Chelsea do need to improve if they are going to be crowned champions, which is what Sir Alex Ferguson was talking about...He knows he has a fairly young Man United side (even if the average age disagrees) in which some players are still improving and have not reached their peak and as a team they are going to be even more formidable this season. If things had been different and it was Man United that just missed out instead, there would be obvious disappointment, but still huge optimism in the United camp, with a young talented squad that has a massive potential. And it’s easy to say now but (keeping the same team) I think I would have still backed them to win the title this time round. But they did win anyway, both the Premier League and the Champions League and some say they exceeded expectations by achieving success so early, so with United getting even better, this year the impetus and pressure will be on Chelsea to challenge for the title rather than United defend it. But I feel it will only be a challenge, and a slightly weaker one in terms of how many points they finish on compared to United. But I do not think Chelsea are a worse team than last year, if anything they are better having added a few more talents to the long list of world-class internationals and with the addition of a new manager that is proven and well respected throughout the footballing world, who still is likely to be looking to bring in more players. It is just difficult to see the red devils drop many points and Chelsea won’t be able to step up, and eventually keep up this year. However like always they will be up there, and it will no doubt be close for a large part of the season but United will again come out on top, for several years to come. Fri 25 Jul 2008 16:13:41 GMT+1 U7194339 re:272it was gerrards own manager who suggested he plays with passion rather than these so called foot ball analysts and their quotes and how you know their opinions are worth more than mine. you appear to be one of those people who will accept only what suits your own opinion.a much better way of judging progress is by your results against the teams that are supposedly better than you.liverpools points totals could be as a result of the poorer teams becoming weaker as opposed to liverpool getting better.i can honestly say and prove that liverpools points tally from the teams that finish above them are not improving, can you prove that the teams below them are not getting weaker. liverpool are obviously better than the teams below them but are making no inroads on the teams above them. fact Fri 25 Jul 2008 16:07:04 GMT+1 DrCajetanCoelho Senhor Luis Felipe Scolari and Sir Alex Ferguson are legends in their own right. Senhor Scolari has tasted success with the national teams of Brazil and Portugal. His knowledge of the Portuguese language and culture was a plus point during his previous coaching stints. Sir Alex Ferguson has achieved much during his long tenure with the Red Devils. The two veteran football managers are good readers of the game. One has to wait and see how Senhor Luis Felipe copes with the long English football season with FA and other Cup ties, EPL and CL encounters. Over the decades Sir Alex Ferguson has shown tremendous stamina and a huge appetite for challenges. His hunger for success is phenomenal. Best of luck to the two legendary football managers.Dr. Cajetan Coelho Fri 25 Jul 2008 15:07:06 GMT+1 FoxElipsus Once again, those kinds of comments don't even need an answer. Gerrard doesn't play with his brain, and doesn't pull the strings like Scholes, you say. I'm delighted that you can see what football analysts around the world have been missing all these years when they say the exact opposite. Looking at points total at the end of a season is a good way to see if a team is progressing or not. Liverpool are getting their highest ever points tallies. They are moving forward. Will they win it, who knows. There are 3 other brilliant clubs involved. Fri 25 Jul 2008 14:46:46 GMT+1 U7194339 liverpool goin backwards.benitez takes over, european champions but no threat in the season, fa cup but no threat in the season, well beaten finalists, no threat in the league.last season, nothing and still no threat in the league and their results against the teams above them were laughable.there is absolutely no evidence to suggest that any improvement has been made. even their own supporters have given up on the age old mantra that this is their year. Fri 25 Jul 2008 13:48:31 GMT+1 U7194339 benitez once substituted gerrard because the game needed brain more than passion.gerrard was probably the most passionate player in the prem but never the brightest. he runs a lot and kicks the ball a long way but never pulls the strings like scholes does. Fri 25 Jul 2008 13:27:01 GMT+1 FoxElipsus Rhino, maybe I overreacted, but it just felt like you'd tipped the scales, you'd thrown Nani and Anderson on the field when they don't often start, and left Mikel and Kalou and such youngsters out of Chelsea, when they often do. And there was no mention of Neville, who is not only still United's starting right back, but their captain. And Giggsy and Scholesy play a lot. But yeah, maybe I was hard on you.I find myself defending Liverpool and Arsenal a lot. Who just said Liverpool have gone backwards? Each season they amass more points than the last - they are on the up. I don't see how you can view that as backwards.And finally, rchrdav, there are plenty of people who think Gerrard is the best midfielder the Premier League has seen. He is frequently voted into "best ever Premier League XI"s in publications and public houses alike. Keegan picked him as the best player he's ever seen in the modern game. Chelsea were going to pay 30m for him if he was willing to leave Anfield. Like I said, you may not like him, but saying he's not fit to lace Keane's boots and that Scholesy is miles better is basically like holding up a sign saying "I'm a United fan, and I hate Liverpool, and therefore I hate Gerrard, so please don't take my opinions seriously!" Fri 25 Jul 2008 12:58:12 GMT+1 rchrdav #211 I have never heard anyone say that Gerrard is the best midfielder there has ever been in the premier league, I would remember laughing at them. Not fit to lace Keane's boots, Viera was miles better than Gerrad Scholes still is miles better.Yes SAF tried to buy him doesnt make him the best ever. If it is any consolation he wouldnt get into Chelseas team either as midfield is their main strength.Arsenal could probably use him to partner Fabregas though he might have to learn some positional discipline. Fri 25 Jul 2008 12:47:44 GMT+1 U7194339 and by the way, chelsea's players will soon tire of busting a gut for empty seats. the least you lot could do is turn up. Fri 25 Jul 2008 12:32:44 GMT+1 U7194339 comment 265.liverpool got a new manager and they've gone backwards.they also brought in new players and still went backwards.fergie's so called weak attempt at mind games has already drawn in a twitchy response from scolari as well as plenty on here including you. but you're right, chelsea did finish behind manchester united last season, just as they will this season. the three players you state as being chelsea's cornerstone have all expessed their discontent and as such suggests that chelsea,s foundations are somewhat unstable. cheer up, second best is not bad but not good enough for your benefactor. watch out phil, roman is watching you. Fri 25 Jul 2008 12:28:14 GMT+1 jcedge Re Message 258: Fergusson said that he doesn't consider Chelsea a threat this season. Given that Chelsea were United's biggest threat last season, and very nearly took both trophies from them. Surely you understand that for them to no longer be regarded as a threat implies deterioration.United won't be much better than last season, they haven't signed anyone so it will probably be more of the same; a very talented squad nonetheless.Therefore, I think that Ferguson is wrong to dismiss Chelsea. Chelsea can see more of an improvement that Manchester United, as they have a new manager with a new style; the players starting off eager to impress... therefore Chelsea will probably be starting strongly.Granted, players don't usually get any better at the age of 30; but how could Ballack, Lampard and Drogba possibly improve anyway? They won't, but don't need to.Also, I love it how people are going to the trouble of going on here to say that the BBC shouldnt be talking about this, and that it's not important. How hypocritical!!!It's just picking up on Fergies weak attempt at mind games, which is a perfectly valid point!!! Fri 25 Jul 2008 11:37:53 GMT+1 U7194339 bbc sport's chief football writer? you would do well to read comment 263. it puts your childish effort to shame. is may 2008 still hurting you that badly or are you just toeing the party line. if you want to be taken seriously you should not let ferguson's dispute with the bbc to affect your judgement. Fri 25 Jul 2008 10:29:07 GMT+1 Singlesensualist Regardless of comments, mind games or anything else, SAF has done the whole of football a great service, and has consistently produced results, I am a lifelong Chelsea fan, having been born and bred there, but it doesn't stop Me recognising quality elsewhere. We had a very good season last time, and I feel Grant should have been give at least one more complete season in charge, but it's a new time and we have to look forward not back. We have a nucleus of a great side, Chech, Terry, Lampard and Drogba, My hope is we start developing or buying in youngsters ( preferably home grown) to learn under these maestros of their positions, and maintain a side that can't compete with the best anywhere. All SAF is doing is saying " we are the best, come and try and compete with us, if all clubs take up that gauntlet, then all football will benefit Fri 25 Jul 2008 10:04:33 GMT+1 U7194339 ha ha ha. the season hasn't started yet and scolari is already taking his eye off the ball. so he wont rise to the bait eh phil. judging by scolari's reported comments it would appear that squeaky bum time has started early this season. the only thing big about scolari is his ego Fri 25 Jul 2008 09:59:58 GMT+1 cldntgiveatoss Missing the point. SAF is not a good coach. He has had good coaches at Utd when they have reaped just rewards. Unless Utd. get a good no 2 and fast SAF's poor coaching skills will once again come to the fore. Also, with the cost o fuel, will so many be able to afford the long trips to Old Trafford? Fri 25 Jul 2008 00:31:29 GMT+1 memyselfandpie Article makes lots of assumptions and ignores the facts. Ferguson always states what he thinks at the start of the season and I can't recall him getting much wrong in recent years. Why ignore his observations? Why dismiss them as mind games?Phil talks about the average age being roughly the same: ignoring the fact that VDS is 37 and that both teams will rotate; United have a kids like Anderson and Nani that will have improved.Chelsea appear a bit stale in comparison, they've strengthened the RB area and bought a midfielder that adds versatility: but he's edging on being past it and his style might not fit in.United are likely to improve this year - as yet we don't know how far - and Chelsea cannot compete in those stakes. Them's the facts as Fergy and many others see them. Thu 24 Jul 2008 20:20:10 GMT+1 bcity20 When Ferguson gets a new assistant things may change. For the better or for the worse, noone can tell yet. But Ferguson is the manager...he doesn't coach..he's not on the pitch during practice with the rest of the squad..querioz was basically the real coach of the squad. he took the pitch when them. I'm interested to see who the new assistant is going to be. Someone new or someone already in the system....any thoughts anyone? Thu 24 Jul 2008 18:15:31 GMT+1 RHINO44 Re message 251 - Fergie never said that Chelsea would deteriorate due to their age. He stated that he doubts that they will improve as individuals at their age - not get worse.His point is that he expects players like Ramsey, Fabregas, Adebayor, Rooney, Ronaldo, Tevez, Nani, Anderson etc to improve due to them not being at their peak yet.He never made a single derisory comment and didn't even come close to saying Chelsea would deteriorate - he said that they probably wouldn't improve. Who does at 30?Everyone agrees with this, surely. It isn't newsworthy - except to McNulty here!Headline should read: At 30, you don't improve as a footballer and your prime years are at your late 20s. Shock, horror! Thu 24 Jul 2008 17:35:22 GMT+1 RHINO44 Re mesage 247 - how did I manipulate the starting 11s? I took out the goalies - granted, but having said that I could easily have placed Foster or Kuszcak in goal to prove my point further, bearing in mind they will be number 1 and 2 soon enough.If you want I can give you the Champions League teams where there was Makalele in the team - I've already accounted for Scholes.Mcnulty's stats include a United first team with Giggs, Scholes and probably Bobby Charlton in it - only Scholes is first team.Can you please tell me where I got the Chelsea starting line-up wrong - Joe Cole instead of Anelka maybe - that is it surely.That still makes them more than 28 on average. Thu 24 Jul 2008 17:30:09 GMT+1 jcedge I disagree entirely, I think scolari is a fantastic coach and man manager who's teams play the right kind of football. I'm looking forward to Chelsea being a bit more entertaining! I think we're in with a great chance of winning the league once again.Lol about forest. haha. Thu 24 Jul 2008 17:20:35 GMT+1 FoxElipsus I honestly don't feel threatened by Chelsea this season. They're a great team but I honestly don't see them winning the league under Scolari.Did someone just say Forest? Do you mean, Nottingham Forest, or Forest Green Rovers F.C.?I know one of them used to be in the top flight, I can't remember which, because it's been so long! Either one would need more than Abramovich and Ferguson combined to break into the big 4. Maybe in about 30-40 years. Maybe. Thu 24 Jul 2008 16:56:03 GMT+1 jcedge Also, as a Chelsea fan it feels pretty good that when we won the league back-to-back we completely outclassed Man United....and when United won back-to back titles we took them all the way to the wire in two competitions and were extremely unlucky. United fans can gloat all they like, and foolishly disregard Chelsea but it doesn't change reality. The very reason why you all write and say these things is that you feel threatened by Chelsea, just like Ferguson does. Thu 24 Jul 2008 16:45:24 GMT+1 maldiniforzamilano chelsea are currently in the process of improving their youth setup, and we will start to see the product of that in a couple of years================================with all respect to chelseas youth product, the way the game is going (the english game especially) young superstars are considered the future (ronaldo, messi, robinho) and are bought to become key players as well as marketable players. Thu 24 Jul 2008 16:44:56 GMT+1 maldiniforzamilano it is funny that ferguson has a swipe at scolaris english. why does he not give us a conference in portugese. even though he is a successful manager but is still not one of the best. the fact that all he knows is "get it out wide" and defend with 10 when you play a good team (milan, barcelona, madrid) means he is not special enough to be considered up there with the big boys. (delude man utd fans will disagree unsurprisingly) i have never been a big fan of scolari either and i think the 2002 world cup was the worst i have ever seen (from 1990 onwards). that is not his fault of course. mourinho is a better manager than him and therefore expect this to be an easier challenge for ferguson than jose was. Thu 24 Jul 2008 16:33:34 GMT+1 jcedge Chelsea's squad isn't old at all! An aging squad would have players over 33 in it, and Chelsea don't have any! We sold Makalele because he was getting old. It just so happens that a few of Chelsea's players have recently turned 30, but why would that mean that they are less capable of playing football than when they were 29?Chelsea are currently in the process of improving their youth setup, and we will start to see the product of that in a couple of years. Until then, this very able squad with some of the best and most experienced players in world football is more than capable of competing with the very best.I think we need an extra flair player like Robinho who can create something out of nothing much like Ronaldo does. Once we get someone like that in, we will have a team capable of winning the league. Also, hopefully we can go one better in the champions league (and not draw the final so that who takes the trophy home is decided with the lottery of penalties), because with Scolari and the extra talent we can be better than Man United, not just on par with them.It's going to be an interesting season, with two of the best sides in the world fighting it out again. Dream on Liverpool and Arsenal, not going to be good enough. Thu 24 Jul 2008 16:31:57 GMT+1 UKrescueparty As a neutral this is great - when the mind games start, you know the season isn't far away and i can't wait. The premiership should be a cracker this year. To all Man u and Chelsea fans i say this.....make the most of it while you can. You've got a season left. After that, my boys (Forest) are comin for ya :-) Thu 24 Jul 2008 15:50:55 GMT+1 jackiewilsonsaid Hee Hee,I'm looking forward to the next couple of years and watching Scolari unravel in front of our eyes.Fergie has a glint in his, he will have another notch on his belt just like all the others before. Thu 24 Jul 2008 15:31:11 GMT+1 sunofnothing1981 It seems strange that McNulty is predicting Scolari will 'ignore' Sir Alex's mind games. Surely pinning his comments to the wall of Chelsea's training ground, and using his mastery of English to formulate a suitable reply would not be an ideal manner in which to ignore something?This article doesn't make sense Phil, how can you ignore something by answering it, and pinning it to a wall to motivate your players? Surely these actions are far from ignoring something - indeed, surely they amount to a most definite response?I think Sir Alex knows he's in for an interesting season - this will probably be the season Arsenal come good, and Chelsea will also be his main challengers. However SAF has a point, and you can't blame him for exaggerating it - Chelsea haven't really improved their squad atall (Deco hasn't been the same player since he left Porto, never mind last season), and they aren't getting any younger. Man U's big stars are all reaching their peak, whereas those at Chelsea have reached theirs and are now declining - the poing Ferguson makes about them having reached a plateau is the truth, for these players aren't suddenly going to move up a gear for the news season - they've already peaked, and it seems there is more talk about big players leaving Chelsea (Lampard) than arriving (will be interesting if they can get Kaka, but I can't see it happening).All in all, SAF seems to be talking sense, albeit in an exaggerated way - Mr McNulty, on the other hand, is not - I still can't get over you claiming Scolari will ignore SAF's comments (and even that is presumptuous, as McNulty knows Scolari about as well as I do), and then providing 2 examples of how he will react to it. Great stuff Phil. Thu 24 Jul 2008 15:12:00 GMT+1 FoxElipsus SuperDad - I'm not going to discuss Chelsea or Man United with you, I don't like either team particularly, but Man United is miles ahead. However, while you insult the bloggers on this page and call me a clown for sharing my opinion with your barely-concealed disdain, you only make yourself look bad. Come the end of the season, some of us will be right, and some of us will be wrong, but at least most of us will be able to say that we respected each other without throwing insults around. We're such low, pathetic bloggers, boring, a waste of time, I'm sure, but at least some of us show some basic respect for each other without name-calling. Let's wait for the end of the season, or even mid-season, and let's see what you have to say then. Scolari will be out of a job and Chelsea out of Europe. And please, write off Arsenal and Liverpool at your peril. But then what would I know, I'm just a clown. I wish I could be perfect, like you.Rhino - No matter how good United are, and they are pretty out of this world, you will always have to live with the fact that you were outplayed in the Champions League final, and that only pure luck handed you that penalty shoot out. (a) that Terry slipped, and (b) that Terry, not Kalou, took #5. You completely manipulated the players on the field to make Man U younger and Chelsea older. Anelka in the starting 11? Please. But other than that, you're right, Scolari cannot be taken seriously as a top Premier League coach, in fact there is every reason to think his Chelsea will fail miserably. I'm not necessarily wishing for that, although I would like to see another club in the top 4. I just really, truly expect to see that happen this year. 3rd? How about, 5th?Fox Thu 24 Jul 2008 14:43:29 GMT+1 reasoneddebate No? Must just be me then. Thu 24 Jul 2008 14:28:45 GMT+1 bcity20 He looks nothing like John Terry you mook Thu 24 Jul 2008 14:20:18 GMT+1 reasoneddebate Just spotted McNulty's picture on the top right. Does anyone else think he might be John Terry in a thinly-veiled disguise? Thu 24 Jul 2008 13:54:52 GMT+1 bcity20 Confidence is everything in football. I think we could all agree about that. Now, I'm not saying what Ferguson said is right or that he went about it the right way, but what is it supposed to say? "My team is not going to do that well this year. Scolari's team will be a great success and will most likely beat us this season" NO. He is backing his squad like any good manager. I see that now. At first i thought his remarks were childish, but what would you do? You've got to stick by your squad, make them feel that they are the best, that they are afraid of no oone. All of the clubs are top notch, thats why they compete in the best league in the world. To down any club would be synical. Ferguson can say what he wants. He has the experience and the respect from others to have his opinion not taken lightly and maybe thats why McNulty is making such a big deal about this but you know, McNulty probrably doesn't even look at this blog so why do we keep complaining about him?Do any of you coach or play in the premier league? i'm assuming not. So to sit here and bash on Mcnulty or bash on Sir Alex, or bash on Chelsea, your no better then the journo who wrote this article. Does anyone agree? Thu 24 Jul 2008 13:27:26 GMT+1 davthered a couple of points to statements made:1) Fergies comments are old hat - well they might be but if it isn't broke don't fix it, theres been a long line of managers wanting to copy uniteds success: keegan, wenger, houlier, mouriniho, etc etc but fergies seen them off, Scholari is just another new kid on the block who fergie will eat up and spit out.2) Scholari's a great manager - As a fan of brazilian football I admired the team that won the world cup when he was manager, but to be fair a team with flair, pace, power, skill and hunger that the brazilians had, not to mention top world class players eg Ronaldinho, ronaldo,rivaldo etc etc at their peak most people would have won that world cup with that team. What have Chelsea got but over rated has beens, oh and Deco!!3) yeah you pushed us close but we hadn't started playing till December and were well off the pace before then, I don't think that will happen this season Thu 24 Jul 2008 13:00:41 GMT+1 Horace Being a supporter of the iron, i dont care for the premiership as it is a sad state of affairs, the lower leagues is where the action is.However can i just say from reading this blog and from meeting Man Utd fans in general, that no matter how many these Man Utd fans claim they are the greatest, in my eyes and probably the whole countries eyes, is that you will never be European royalty like Liverpool. Thu 24 Jul 2008 12:56:32 GMT+1 stevenicolsleftpeg to superdadLiverpools owners are no longer at each others throats Thu 24 Jul 2008 12:00:24 GMT+1 WordsofWisdom For anyone interested here's a definition of mind games:"An act or series of acts of calculated psychological manipulation, especially in order to confuse or intimidate. Often used in the plural."By extension of the definition, in this context, what is said is not believed to be true (or fully true) nor is it held up as a serious opinion. It's a wind up and boy has it worked well!Most fans on here acknowledge this but proceed to try and refute or support the point through aimless argument and pulling up stats on players ages.It's tounge in cheek, classic Fergie stirring the pot as the new season approaches.But Sir Alex knows he has a captive and gullible audience...starting with Mr McNulty.Hook, line and sinker!!!!!! Thu 24 Jul 2008 11:42:58 GMT+1 alphaRossco Please your all very boring with the Fergie bashing.Wasn't there a VERY similar article in place when Jose came to the Bridge? Ferguson is ofering an opinion and one which has substance. Chelsea are once again buying in players who are past their peaks and are looking for that final golden handshake, speak to Chelsea fans and they call them "legends" in truth they are has beens. I'm bored of the Fegie bashing in this country. I AM NOT a Utd fan but i respect their achievments much as I do Liverpool for their reign in the 80's.Typical media bull always spinning it round and putting it in a negative light it's adisgrace and especially coming from some pie in the sky idot who's wages WE pay. SHUP UP CRITICISING and do something constructive you half wedged half brained fool. Thu 24 Jul 2008 11:42:47 GMT+1 Bishop007 ferguson shouldnt try to be a bully. Chelsea only has 7 players in their thirties meanwhile man utd has 5 who are even older. if he says chelsea are ageing, that means in his philosophy, AC Milan are dying yet they always defeat him when they meet in the champions league. up blues.. Thu 24 Jul 2008 11:19:31 GMT+1 Only jocking Fergie's mind games - zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. Thu 24 Jul 2008 11:04:40 GMT+1 Bishop007 Well, well, well, sir fergie should look before he leaps. Chelsea is not ageing cos they just have 7 players that are in their thirties in a team of about 25, where as man utd has like 5 or 6 players in their mid thirties in a squad of 18 or 20. so who's ageing??? look at inter and AC milan then u'll be looking at an ageing team. not chelsea... up blues Thu 24 Jul 2008 10:57:28 GMT+1 jsfain Ferguson is a dope, time to retire. Thu 24 Jul 2008 10:48:59 GMT+1 RHINO44 I meant Ferdinand, Vidic - no wonder I didn't become a journo!! Thu 24 Jul 2008 10:34:12 GMT+1 RHINO44 Average age of 28?Ignore Van Der Sar - he is a goalie.Brown, Ferdinand, Ferdinand, Evra, Nani, Anderson, Carrick/Hargreaves/Scholes, Ronaldo, Rooney, TevezAny combination of this team comes out well below 28. In fact 24.8 years (with Scholes it comes out at 25.2 years).Where do you get your info from?With regards to Chelsea, I can tell you that they will be no better. In 26 years, Scolari has managed the following clubs and countries:JuventudeBrasil de PelotasAl-ShababBrasil de PelotasJuventudeGrêmioGoiásAl QadisiyaKuwaitCriciúmaAl-AhliAl QadisiyaGrêmioJúbilo IwataPalmeirasCruzeiroBrazilPortugalChelsea F.C. 19 clubs in 26 years - and apart from the national teams, can anyone tell me exactly what the others have done on the world stage? The Brazilian league is filled with players that Europe doesn't want or players that need 100 degree weather in order to look any good. You notice Kleberson is a star out there.Complete joke and Scolari will see Chelsea finish 3rd and be gone in 1.36 years - the average length of time he spends at a team and if you take away the national sides, he lasts approximately 1.17 years - how can that possibly compete with Wenger and Fergie having invested in their teams over the past 20 years?Chelsea's first team of (again outfield players only): Bosingwa, Terry, Carvalho, Cole, Essien, Lampard, Deco/Joe Cole/, Ballack, Drogba, AnelkaDoes indeed come out at 28.5 years (28 with Joe Cole.This is ridiculous journalism built on lies and with an obvious bias. Why has nobody written about Scolari's job hopping - I am certain that if I went for a job with a CV like his, I would be laughed out the building!Get it right and make it accurate, rather than stoke fires.I also hate the "Chelsea were only a width of a post..............." rubbish that comes out. There was a penalty shoot-out and Man Utd scored more penalties. Therefore they are European Champions - that's it.Otherwise, why not also state that Man Utd were a width of a post from winning the league by 4 points, had one of their 30 shots against Blackburn gone in. Bad shooting is bad shooting and you win nothing with it. Thu 24 Jul 2008 10:33:25 GMT+1 T J Newton Fox, you again state Utd are miles ahead. How so? What has happened in the close season to make them more than the small amount ahead they were at the end of the season?Would it be Chelsea getting a proper manager? Who is proven. You don't have to manage in the Prem to be proven, ask Jose.Would it be Chelsea strengthening their squad with a couple of quality players? Especially at right back where we have been so badly lacking in the previous couple of seasons.Would it be Utd's highly respected assistant manager leaving them?Would it be their finest player by a mile desperate to leave and injured for at least 2 months at the start of next season?Please let me know.As for Arsenal having a more stable team, how so? The players that haven't left seem to be looking for ways out and they have admitted they are now a selling club. They also have a nutbag as captain which can't help.If you think the odds are very low of Chelsea's success you must know more than the bookies cos they don't seem to think so.You really are a clown of the highest order.Now I must be getting myself ready as I'm off on holiday today.I would say it's been interesting but to be honest blogs like this just remind me how dull and biased most fans on these sites are.Have a lovely couple of weeks, all. I will.Liverpools owners are at each others throats, which is understandable with the credit crunch making things tight for them. Thu 24 Jul 2008 10:30:01 GMT+1 northernblue 229 - Good points and well made. And we've got no class, let's not forget!You CAN buy instant success - look at our trophy haul over the last few years, but your points on sustainability are very valid.However, I think it's looking at the world through rose tinted glasses to say the most succesful clubs have brought players through the ranks.Liverpool were the CFC of their day. Look at the spines of those teams - Hughes/Hansen, Lawro, Souness, McDermott Dalglish/Keegan, Rush/Toshack - all bought at hefty prices for the time. Then you have the Hansen, McMahon, Barnes, Beardsley team - all bought. Indeed, with the likes of McDermott, McMahon, Rush, Aldridge - you could accuse them of not nurturing local talent, but actually letting it slip away from them and that that talent was nurtured elsewhere. It is a complete myth to say LFC built their success on bringing players through - in the days when an international transfer meant Dalglish from Celtic, Liverpool were paying record sums for proven talent and were hugely acquisitive in picking off the cream of talent from sides who had brought players on(John Wark, David Johnson from that talented Ipswich side being great examples). It's all part of Scouse mythology!Granted, United had that golden team era of Scholes, Giggs et al, and credit to them for that. But what's the record like since then? No better than Chelsea's - shelling out £20M on a teeneager here and there.Tell me one United player to have come through the anks since Wes Brown some 8-9 yrs ago?Good run in the Youth Cup by CFC last year...You are dead right on managerial T/O, however. It's of Man Cityesque proportions. Thu 24 Jul 2008 10:17:23 GMT+1 MDWolf politeNorthernblue - my intent was not to argue the point - simply to re-iterate it.However, overall I believe United have more stability than Chelsea. How many players have been lured to Chelsea by huge wage packets over the last few years and then left within a couple of seasons because they aren't getting a game or not getting on with the manager/players/setup? How many managers are turfed out because they didn't have instant success? More stability equals a greater foundation for potential improvement in my book.Add to that the statistic of pulling through home-grown players. Over the last 3 decade, the 2 most successful clubs, Liverpool and United, have been the ones who have most successfully pulled through home-grown players - this again adds to the stability.Do United need to improve on conceding less goals than anyone else? Not particularly. As for Rooney - he could easily improve upon his goal tally by being played more consistently in his preferred role - a fact which SAF has admitted he got wrong by sacrificing Rooney for the team.What Mr Abramovich and Chelsea do not seem to realise is that although you may be able to buy some initial success with a hefty bank account and stupid wages - it is ultimately self defeating - especially when you have players demanding to be the highest paid at the club. You cannot maintain that success if your team does not have stability.Don't get me wrong - Chelsea ARE a good team - but football's a funny old game, as they say - and no matter how rich you are, you cannot expect to buy instant success and then maintain it by simply throwing money at it or changing your manager because he doesn't produce a trophy with the money you gave him - it doesn't work like that - and SAF himself is the proof - what did he achieve in his first few years at United? Nothing! Would United have achieved the success they have over the last 16 years if he had been sacked. More than likely not.Personally, I think the stability has been gone ever since Ranieri was replaced by Mourhino. Don't get me wrong (again) - I thought Jose was (and still is) a class act - but Ranieri built the solid foundation of that team that went on to be successful under Mourhino.Until Chelsea achieve the stability and foundation that clubs such as United, Liverpool and Arsenal have achieved, then they will always remain a 'good team' and will never be 'great' - and the sooner Roman Abramovich realises that throwing money at it and turning over managers/players on a seasonal basis is not teh solution, the sooner Chelsea will be able to achieve that status. Thu 24 Jul 2008 09:53:50 GMT+1 bluewinall Fergie cannot distablise Big Phil. His jibes will backfire in the same way thye did in 2004 with Jose Thu 24 Jul 2008 09:39:56 GMT+1 stevenicolsleftpeg "208. At 09:23am on 24 Jul 2008, rchrdav wrote:#157 Chelsea have the best defence? That would mean they conceded the fewest goals last season then wouldnt it? Actually that statistic goes to Manchester United making Uniteds the best defence.#158 No Way No How would Carragher replace either Rio or JT he is simply not good enough and never has been. As for Mascherano and Alonso both are good players but neother would get onto Chelsea or Man Utd squads. The only player that would get into eithers first team is Torres. "Now i may be wrong but didn't SAF try to sign Mascherano the summer he went to West Ham and for Gerrard being such a poor player you would have to question SAF's judgment as he has tried to sign him twice. Probably would've ended up another Djemba djemba obviously. Thu 24 Jul 2008 09:35:11 GMT+1 mr_big_nose firstly, a good article, agree that SAF's comments on Chelsea are there to rile Scolari before the prem starts (excellent pre-season banter). However his comments do ring true in some respects. Chelsea could even win the coming season but you have to look at sustainable success. Chelsea will never be able to mould into a consistent power with the ridiculous turnover of managers and players they have at the club. I think Ferguson knows this, if Scolari doesnt get instant silverware, he'll be sacked and his players probably sold... back to square 1. meanwhile Man u will be getting stonger and stronger. Thu 24 Jul 2008 09:31:53 GMT+1 northernblue MDWolf359 - understand what you are saying, but really? I know United were sometimes not as good as they were made out to be (Boro, Blackburn, WHUFC) and were running out of steam at the end. But how do they improve on 40 goals from Ronnie and c20 a piece from Rooney and Tevez? Not, I wager, by buying Berbatov and ruining the mix. How do they improve on only conceding 22 (?) FAPL goals? Chelsea were performed at 80% last season, Utd at 95% - we have plenty more gas in the tank, I don't think Utd have.Another point on improvement - last summer we got Sidwell and Ben Haim, so farthis summer it's Bosingwa (OK, already injured!) and Deco... Thu 24 Jul 2008 09:28:25 GMT+1 stevenicolsleftpeg "67. At 2:25pm on 23 Jul 2008, azeb-manutd wrote:To thelovelyhotspot:While you may be right in saying that the big 4 lack ethics, you must take into consideration why...It is also true that they do have a habit of buying everybody else's best players instead of creating there own, but there are two sides to this story:"I would imagine the second side to this story was the ridiculous transfer fees that Liverpool paid for Jamie Carragher and Steven Gerrard? Not to mention Fowler, McManaman and Owen. I hate Utd as much as any Liverpool fan but they produce plenty of players through their youth system which cannot be said of Chelsea who have produced maybe one good player in the last 15 years. Thu 24 Jul 2008 09:25:10 GMT+1 MDWolf politeNorthernblue - you're right - perhaps it was only 3 points and a lick of paint. And perhaps Chelsea do only need to improve a little to overcome that......... but I think the whole point of SAF's argument, which seems to have been missed, is that no matter how much Chelsea improve, he believes United will be able to surpass that improvement - got to say that I agree! Thu 24 Jul 2008 09:19:32 GMT+1 FoxElipsus Gerrard - Lampard is a yawn. I'm ashamed that my countrymen ever partook in such a debate. But my countrymen also doubted the passion and commitment of David Beckham. And also lobbied for Sven to leave after 2 penalty exits to Portugal and an unlucky loss to Brazil all in Quarter Finals. So we could get McLaren. Great choice, England fans. The only bunch that have less of a clue about the England team than the F.A. are England fans, collectively. Pathetic. I count myself among them, but having to hear Sven and Becks taking all that abuse when they were doing a good job, and now look where we ended up without them - it's ironic and makes absolute sense to me.But yeah, maybe Little Phil is doing exactly what he is diatribing about SAF doing - saying things that he doesn't even give a toss about, just to provoke a reaction. Maybe we're supposed to detest him. Maybe that's how he's "controversial." Rather than making an outlandish claim and backing it up, he's basically The Sun. All sensationalism and no substance. But that kind of reporting rules the world these days. Thu 24 Jul 2008 09:18:14 GMT+1 wilfbroady Usual Ferguson talk of course at the start of the season - on the subject of age , nobody seems to have noticed that he (b1941) is 7 years old than Scolari (b1948)!!! Thu 24 Jul 2008 09:15:01 GMT+1 eggman84uk ps if you don't know how to copy and paste... there's no hope for you, son Thu 24 Jul 2008 09:04:58 GMT+1 eggman84uk And what do you do, that makes you even higher and mightier than me?Just out of interest, do you agree or disagree with me about the quality of Phil's article?If you disagree, please explain :) Thu 24 Jul 2008 09:03:49 GMT+1 Chezdon Why can't you copy and paste? Useless website. I asked because I wanted to know what made you so high and mighty. I feel sorry for the children that have had the misfortune to have been taught by you, Eggman. Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:55:59 GMT+1 eggman84uk You know sometimes you can read something and think to yourself "I hadn't thought of that, very good point, well-made" etc etc. That never happens. Except sometimes from the people who comment on the articles. Rubbish at his job though he may be, a lot of people do seem to read this articles, whether it be because they enjoy them, want to riducule/complain about them, the boss isn't looking... who knows.If Phil's job description says 'get as many people commenting on your articles as possible', then he is indeed playing mind games with us all, subtly steering us away from moaning about his rubbishness, and steering us towards the Lampard vs Gerrard *yawn* debate... (see comment 209) Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:48:51 GMT+1 FoxElipsus And I guess I have to add, I hate to say it, but as an unbiased observer, I thought Chelsea deserved to win the Champions League final by a stretch, and were desperately unlucky. And believe me, for me to be rooting for Chelski on penalties was bizarre even to me, but it reflected how unlucky they had been not to win in regular time. Regardless, history will say Man U were the champions, but had Kalou stepped up instead of Terry, well, the story would have ended quite differently. And Grant would still have been sacked, which was pathetic. Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:47:04 GMT+1 northernblue I write as a Chelsea fan.In some ways SAF is right: Deco, Drogba, Lampard and Ballack - the attacking impetus of the side - are all over 30. However, I don't think CFC need to show "outstanding" progress to topple Utd next season. Well, firstly the margin between the teams is 3 points and a lick of paint, so we don't need "outstanding" progress to overtake Utd. We need small improvement in one or more of three areas:1. Guess how many games JT and Carvalho started together during the first 40 games of last season? 20? 15? 10? No, the answer is 2. Now centre backs get injured and suspended, but if these two can start together for 30 out of 40 games at the start of the season, we will see CFC improve.2. Closing out games. We conceded 5 last minute equalisers last season (Everton, Villa, Spurs, Wigan, Bolton) and so lost 10 points. Now this sort of thing happens and next season we will lose games we should have won, etc, but if we can improve our ability to close out games we will win more points. 3. Stable leadership - we lost it in October. The FAPL results over Jose's last 2 games and Grant's first 2 went LDLD as a result of Jose slowing down and Grant getting up to speed. A further 10 points dropped. A more stable managerial set up next year should see an improvement here.So, far from having reached what SAF calls a "plateau", I think we can make significant gains in points by a few slight improvements. If any team has plateaud, it is United (admittedly it is avery high plateau!):1. Can Ronaldao get any better? Whereas part of his wanting away is due to the fact that he is a prima donna, deep down I think part of it is due to the fact he wonders how he could possibly improve upon last season's form and rewards. Perhaps he feels it can't get any better for him at Utd and he needs to move on. Furthermore, will his antics have negative reverberations with his team mates, management and fans?2. Querez (spelt wrong, I know) has gone and that will have some after effects.All in all, I think CFC can easily improve by a few points given what I have said above and I think United can slip by a few points. Roll on August! Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:45:25 GMT+1 FoxElipsus Eggman, I don't think he was winding me up. I don't really care if people genuinely think Gerrard wouldn't walk onto Man U or Chelsea. But he was being serious, doubting the credentials of Liverpool's other star players, mentioning the "big 2" of Gerrard and Torres, and then saying only Torres would actually make the 11 of last year's top 2. There wasn't anything in there to suggest that he was messing around. It should be a wind up, but believe it or not, there are still people who don't rate Gerrard as the creme de la creme.Fox Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:44:23 GMT+1 FoxElipsus PS, I'm with you there, about Phil. When several of us comment-submitters can write better football punditry than the paid professional, maybe it's time for him to move on to Darts or Bowls or making the tea for the real writers. We'll do it for free - or for very little. :)So by Xmas, maybe two Phils will be out of a job. If enough people respond to say that he's wasting our time with pathetic sensationalism nothing-journalism that makes us queasy, then he'll either have to focus on some real issues and put some real thought into it, or find something else to do. Big Phil, by the way, will be unfortunate to lose his job, because he never should have been given it anyway. Little Phil, on the other hand, has a job most of us would dream about, and can't even come up with something original or with any substance.Having said that, if the point was to generate a massive discussion, well, I guess he did his job. Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:40:58 GMT+1 eggman84uk Fox, Congratulations :)That's obviously a wind-up Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:38:20 GMT+1 FoxElipsus #208 - your opinions are obviously biased about the other players (Carragher, Mascherano, Alonso), but you're entitled to them and they could be argued, loosely, I suppose.However, when you just said Torres was the only Pool player that would start for Chelsea or Man U, you lost all credibility. Gerrard would walk onto any 11 on the planet, everyone knows it. Some rate him the best midfielder the Prem has ever seen. Chelsea were willing to pay a King's Road Ransom to get him to be a blue, but his heart was Scouse and that was that. Lampard and Scholes or Carrick and Deco if you prefer, are a poor man's Steven Gerrard. He is the complete player. Torres and Gerrard not only would start for Chelsea or Man U - they would be 2 of the top 3 players on either team. And that is saying quite something, if you look at those two teams. Only Cristiano Ronaldo and Michael Essien are of the same astronomical standard as Gerrard and Torres. And the chemistry between them is scary.Like I said, leaving out Gerrard is a severe dent to your credibility. The others are a matter of opinion. Saying Gerrard wouldn't walk on to Man U or Chelsea is a bit like saying Sir Alex Ferguson is a flash in the pan... lunacy. :)Fox Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:35:49 GMT+1 eggman84uk Why is it important that you know what I do that you think must be 'so important'? . I'm a teacher, since you asked. Not saying that's a good or a bad thing, but my wages reflect my ability to do my job, and if I was c**p at it, I'd be sacked. Very few people who comment on these articles by Mr McN. seem to say, "Well done, keep up the good work", things of that nature. Just saying that Phil's not very good at his job, and I don't think I'm in the minority. As for Chelsea, they hit the woodwork twice during a good spell in the second half , as I remember. It wasn't a heroic defeat, they were just second best, and had Ronaldo Rooney Carrick and Tevez to thank for not being humiliated. Just because Big JT cried doesn't mean we should think they deserved to win Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:28:55 GMT+1 MDWolf or Gerrard! I rate Gerrard over Lampard anyday - and he'd also be an excellent replacement for Scholes. Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:27:39 GMT+1 rchrdav #157 Chelsea have the best defence? That would mean they conceded the fewest goals last season then wouldnt it? Actually that statistic goes to Manchester United making Uniteds the best defence.#158 No Way No How would Carragher replace either Rio or JT he is simply not good enough and never has been. As for Mascherano and Alonso both are good players but neother would get onto Chelsea or Man Utd squads. The only player that would get into eithers first team is Torres. Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:23:51 GMT+1 MDWolf Chelsea hardly have the history to be called one of the 'Big 2'. Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:21:08 GMT+1 Chezdon Eggman - Chelsea hit the post, once or twice I can't remember. Terry had a chance to win it. They did come close you can't deny that. What are you paid to do that's so useful then?Arsenal don't stand a chance this year with their thin squad; Liverpool will blow it as usual so it'll be down to the "Big 2" again! Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:17:41 GMT+1 MDWolf McNulty must be full of glee that the new season approaches and his desparation to TRY (and I emphasise the word 'TRY') to belittle United and SAF can continue.I can't believe a proportion of my licence fee goes towards your wages.tempestteacup had it spot on earlier in his post - it is crackpot journalists such as yourself that overstate and blow out of proportion anything that SAF, or other managers say and do - not the managers/players/fans themselves.It seems that with 'journalists' (again, used loosely) like McNulty around, that managers cannot win. Ferguson was asked for an opinion - he gave it - it doesn't matter if it was brash or harsh, it was his opinion he was asked for, and his opinion that he gave.If he had refused to give an opinion you'd have still somehow twisted the story to have a dig with a crappy headline such as 'Scolari frightens SAF into silence.'Either stop writing rubbish, or ship out McNulty! I'm tired of your biased drivel. Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:17:24 GMT+1 eggman84uk Sorry for bringing this up again, but how much of our money are you paid for writing this drivel, Phil? We all know Fergie likes the old 'obvious psychological warfare'. Probably it's more a case of it's much easier for him to talk about other teams than his own. You offer no personal opinion or insight, just a very long-winded and pointless article referencing a few players, who you conclude may or may not be past their best. On another note, when will everyone stop talking about how close Chelsea were to winning the Champions League?? They were hammered in the first half, it could have been 3 or 4 by half time... and that plonker Terry only got his chance because the winker was a cocky prat taking his penalty!Sick of (little) Phil, Sick of Chelsea Thu 24 Jul 2008 08:07:00 GMT+1 FoxElipsus I think it's hilarious that Chelsea fans are calling Man U fans biased because they say all is smelling of roses and that Man U are the favourites.I am not a Man U fan - quite the opposite. And let me say this once and for all:All at Old Trafford is smelling of roses, and Man U are the clear, overwhelming favourites for the title. That doesn't mean they will win it. But they are a mile ahead.Arsenal and Liverpool are the main challengers because they have the most stability and proven managers. Chelsea are a huge question mark right now whether you like it or not. They could turn out to be world-beaters but I think the odds of that are very low. Any team can have a blip but to say that Man U are anything other than far-and-away favourites to take the title, is bias of the highest order. Thu 24 Jul 2008 07:53:54 GMT+1 Blueoverthemoon I think Scolari has given Sir Alex Ferguson's remarks the best response possible. He has completely ignored it . If Sir Alex wants to play mind games he will have to be a bit less obvious than this as I'm sure Scolari has been round the block and dealt with this sort of stuff as a matter of routine. Thu 24 Jul 2008 07:03:28 GMT+1 willythewriter With so much attacking talent in the offing, and so costly, is Ferguson planning to unload anybody, say that "Wayne in the butt", Rooney. I can see Wayne becoming a second Paul Gallagher; lots of talent but not too bright, and with minimal self knowledge. Thu 24 Jul 2008 05:23:36 GMT+1 Wilbwan I am sure Ferguson is worried for his age, and not the age of Chelsea players. The team is almost the same to the one that took him to the wire in theChampions League and Premiership last year. Have the players aged just after some months? Felipe please talk to Cristiano to go to Real. Ferguson has just proviked you. I like it that you didnt hit back. You are not Jose' of course. Thu 24 Jul 2008 05:09:01 GMT+1 War Baby ."SCOLARI WILL IGNORE MIND GAMES" screams the headline..If only the boring media would do the same ! ! . Thu 24 Jul 2008 04:23:45 GMT+1 georgiewusbest Man U are the side to beat-with or without Ronaldopreamble to the new season has begun-great stuffthe rest of the EPL will need to do their bestWho is Scolari in EPL anyway and Chelsea have another handicap-the owner picks the team-Shevchenco - where is he again?? Thu 24 Jul 2008 02:49:07 GMT+1 T J Newton Facebookgod, going on and on about how everything Utd was only positive and could only improve and everything Chelsea was negative and could only get worse, you are not too bright.You have let your bias make you look like a fool.Glaziers are astute businessmen? And Roman isn't?Mind you, I suppose they must be quite cute to have bought Utd by placing the whole ever growing debt on the club and not themselves.Why is it only Utd players can improve? And how old do you think JT is that he can only get worse?As for Ronaldo, he is apparently so professional that even if he doesn't get the move he wants he will give 100% next season. Why won't Lampard? I believe Lampard is with his team-mates as we type. Where's Ronaldo?Big Phil has no experience of playing for these trophies? Didn't seem to cause Jose any problems from what I remember.Why do the other 3 have stronger team morale? What do you base this on? Arsenal's players don't seem too happy, either wanting to leave or making huge salary claims. Still, I'm sure their Captain can keep the team spirit high. Liverpool I don't know about. They have more trouble with team spirit between their owners. Utd should have a great spirit apart from their best player desperate to go. Chelsea have the usual one or two eyeing up moves that we get every season. Why do you only claim Chelsea could have a blip? Is it not possible in your strange mind for this to happen to anybody else?Now I am obviously biased towards my club but no-where as much as you. You are an embarrassment.Who knows just what the new season holds but you don't have Ronaldo for at least 2 months and that's if he stays. You've also lost your assistant manager who seems to have been highly rated and respected by the staff.Like I said previously, Utd worked their socks off and played out of their skins to win the Prem on the last day and the Champs league by the skin of their teeth.In my biased view Chelsea looked to be going through the motions for a clueless manager and they have a whole lot more to give.Fergie is right to be worried.He should have retired after the Champs league final and he could have gone out winning. Thu 24 Jul 2008 00:38:14 GMT+1 tempestteacup It seems to me that the public and media's near-obsession with psychological 'mind-games' in football, and especially those practiced by SAF, is growing to the point when it really is a load of absolute tosh.In this case, all it refers to is a candid assessment - right or wrong doesn't matter - by SAF of Chelsea's chances for the coming season. Not particularly complimentary, but then you wouldn't expect it to be, would you, and highly doubtful to have been something he stayed up all night preparing.Ever since Kevin Keegan's 'love it' meltdown on TV, the idea that SAF, and to a lesser extent Arsene Wenger, Jose Mourinho etc., is some kind of psycho-tactical svengali with the ability to push the resolve of even the stoutest manager (or Kevin Keegan) has taken grip on the public consciousness. But if you recall that all Fergie actually said was that teams tried harder to beat United, and that Newcastle's lead at the top of the table was going west anyway, surely it is more likely that Keegan's rant had more to do with the immense pressure he was under anyway? Instead, though, it has passed into myth that Fergie was responsible and since then anything but the most anodyne public statement made by him or others is understood in terms of some vague idea about mind-games. Fun, perhaps, but tosh nonetheless.Managers might make public statements to instill team spirit, gee-up their players, deflect criticism from them, or themselves, or whatever, but the idea that any of them believe any others are going to crumble just because they make a few critical comments about their team is ludicrous.At their best, managers are a bunch of weirdos with the tics and eccentricities that help them deal with the pressures of toeing the line for their team. And while it may not be the most annoying part of football and its coverage, I do reckon that celebrating those eccentricities rather than lazily attributing every outspoken utterance to some nebulous mental battle supposedly going on would make the whole thing a bit more enriching.So there. Thu 24 Jul 2008 00:01:15 GMT+1 MarylandRed Can someone remind Fergie his pal, Mourinho, left Chelsea nearly a year ago and Signor Scolari may not be such a numpty as to fall for his provocations. Leave alone Chelsea players, Fergie is getting on himself. Wed 23 Jul 2008 23:49:22 GMT+1 smithy144 i dont know why mc nulty is still employed by the bbc he doesnt talk any sense at all! i think fergie is spot on although i think that chelsea will pose a threat this year but not as much as last year! with ballack and deco in the centre they will be a match for any premier league side but still we have younger players such as anderson, nani, rooney, tevez, ronaldo etc who are going to get better and better whereas ballack, drogba, lampard, terry and deco arent! thats all fergie was saying! that their going to be the same strength as last year whereas were going to improve! Wed 23 Jul 2008 23:38:21 GMT+1