Tag Archives: stupidity

Marouane Fellaini impossible to replace – David Moyes

Fellaini is impossible to replace, admits Moyes as Everton head into festive period without star midfielder

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UPDATED:

23:40 GMT, 21 December 2012

Banned: Fellaini

Banned: Fellaini

David Moyes has admitted it will be almost impossible to replace Marouane Fellaini as the Everton midfielder begins a three-match ban following his moment of madness.

The Belgium international has been fined 150,000 by Everton after he was retrospectively punished by the FA for headbutting Stoke’s Ryan Shawcross seven days ago.

Moyes was incensed by Fellaini’s stupidity and will make him train as normal during his suspension, which means he is likely to be brought in to Finch Farm on Christmas Day.

Fellaini, 25, has been outstanding this
season and is Everton’s top scorer with seven goals but Moyes expects
his absence from games against West Ham, Wigan and Chelsea will prove
detrimental to their hopes of challenging for a Champions League place.

When asked whether Everton will be able
thrive without Fellaini, Moyes replied: ‘I’m not sure. That’s why it was
a big miss to lose him. We will have to try and find solutions but we
don’t have loads of solutions to fix it. People shouldn’t be surprised
if we aren’t able to solve it.

‘I have spoken to him a few times about it. I said at the time he had let us down and that hasn’t changed. He let a lot of people down. We needed him; this is a busy time of the season where you do pick up injuries and suspensions.

‘Things will happen – you may get a sending off. But you can’t do what he has done. He knows he has done wrong – 100 per cent. He is a good boy, a good lad. He is aware that he has got it wrong.’

Star man: Fellaini has been outstanding for Everton this season

Star man: Fellaini has been outstanding for Everton this season

A further troubling development for Moyes is the continued absence of Kevin Mirallas. Fellaini’s compatriot will also miss the festive fixture list with a hamstring problem that has led to him being sent to see the renowned Dr Hans Muller-Wolfhart in Munich.

Mirallas has been outstanding for Everton since he was signed in a 5million deal in August but he has only managed to play 45 minutes in the Barclays Premier League since he pulled up lame during the 2-1 win against Sunderland on November 10.

‘I am worried, yes, especially when as he is a quick, fleet-footed player,’ said Moyes, who will recall Phil Neville to his starting line-up three weeks ahead of schedule following his remarkable recovery from knee surgery.

‘It is Kevin’s first year in the Premier League and there has been a little bit of surprise trying to get used to it. He got this injury six weeks ago. We are just trying to hang on to people’s shirt tails if we can. This has been quite a difficult period for us and we’ve got to get through it.’

Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre Villas-Boas condemns West Ham anti-semitic chanting

Villas-Boas condemns West Ham anti-semitic chants as 'complete stupidity'

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UPDATED:

14:55 GMT, 27 November 2012

Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas has criticised West Ham fans for the level of aggression in their chanting and branded the anti-semitic songs as ‘complete stupidity’.

Villas-Boas, who could hear the abuse from the dug out during Tottenham’s 3-1 defeat of their London rivals on Sunday, said: ‘The level of aggression with the chanting goes out of proportion. It’s complete stupidity.’

But he also extended his gratitude to the Football Association and the club for the speed with which they have acted – and the severity of the threats.

Critical: Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas has condemned anti-semitic chanting by West Ham fans as 'complete stupidity'

Critical: Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas has condemned anti-semitic chanting by West Ham fans as 'complete stupidity'

‘I think I’m grateful for the quickness with which both clubs have gone into the matter, plus the FA and the police,’ he added.

‘I think West Ham set an example by giving a lifetime ban to the fan.’

Although clearly insisting a number of West Ham supporters had crossed the line, Villas-Boas defended the supporters’ right to voice their opinion about the club and criticise personnel within reason.

‘The fans have a right to everything, in my opinion. They are the ones who breathe the biggest passion for their football club.

‘They are entitled to whatever they want to; to say whatever they want; to chant whatever they want to chant. This can lift and encourage the players and produce negativity and positivity. It’s all down to them.

No love lost: West Ham fans reportedly taunted Tottenham supporters about the stabbings in Rome last week and sang songs about Adolf Hitler

No love lost: West Ham fans reportedly taunted Tottenham supporters about the stabbings in Rome last week and sang songs about Adolf Hitler

‘Football is about them (the fans) and it’s about their passion. They have the right more than anybody to show any kind of feeling.

‘We have to take it. Sometimes you don’t like what you hear but that’s life. It’s what makes us tick, too. We’re professionals of the game and we give everything for them (the fans). We always need to retribute them with what they expect.’

Meanwhile, Martin Jol branded the racist chants from West Ham fans at Tottenham on Sunday as 'embarrassing'.

The Fulham manager was disgusted with the behaviour of some West Ham fans during the match and supported banning those involved for life.

He said: 'I feel that you should not tolerate that and I don't think Spurs and even West Ham won't tolerate that. We all talk about discrimination and we want to get it right in this country, but this is almost embarrassing. What happened at Spurs is very important, you have to talk about it and you have to try to ban it and other little issues as well.'

'Embarrassing': Fulham manager Martin Jol also joined in the condemnation of the chanting, saying those responsible should be banned for life

'Embarrassing': Fulham manager Martin Jol also joined in the condemnation of the chanting, saying those responsible should be banned for life

West Ham released a statement yesterday saying that one of the fans involved 'has since been identified as a Season Ticket holder and has been sent a letter containing a banning order from the club. Any other individuals identified can expect a similar swift and robust response.'

Jol agrees with the club banning for life from Upton Park the fans they can identify as being involved in the anti-Semitic chants at the weekend.

The 56-year-old added: 'I think that is the right thing to ban the players for life if you know who did that. I think you have to ban them from football stadiums so it’s good to hear that. Here, for example, it is totally different. We won't tolerate that. It was, of course, away fans and what can you do about it At times we could be very vulnerable as managers as well as players. And you have to accept that.'

Martin Samuel: Roy Hodgson – we"re not out to get him

Martin Samuel: Out to get them No, we don't hound managers, we just want results

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UPDATED:

22:36 GMT, 30 April 2012

Football journalism. It's a results business. Just like football, really.

When Arsene Wenger took over at Arsenal, he was greeted with headlines asking ‘Arsene Who’ He answered that with a title or two, and now everybody knows his name.

Compelling evidence in football arrives not just year by year, but week by week, and cannot be overridden by mere trenchant opinion for long. A critic may still believe Roberto Di Matteo was a dismal appointment as interim manager at Chelsea, but try to justify that, as of now.

Jobs lot: Roy Hodgson is expected to be confirmed as the England manager for Euro 2012

Jobs lot: Roy Hodgson is expected to be confirmed as the England manager for Euro 2012

So this idea that Roy Hodgson can, or will, be hounded from the England job by a vengeful, embittered, southern-based press, stung that the FA have overlooked their chosen one, Harry Redknapp, really is beyond stupidity.

You know who gets England managers the sack Players. Either ours or theirs. Ours by not being good enough, theirs by being better.

More from Martin Samuel…

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26/04/12

Martin Samuel: No travesty… Chelsea's defeat of Barcelona was beyond triumph
25/04/12

Martin Samuel: Stuff purism, Chelsea's victory over Barcelona was a triumph of sheer will
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Martin Samuel: Only in football would a rapist get a round of applause
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Martin Samuel: We don't need ringers to make us Great Britons
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VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

Whatever the surface reason for a
manager’s departure, results will have got him in the end. Win and it
does not matter what the media think, write or say. Win and everything
else is chatter.

You write your own headlines, Kevin Keegan would tell the players, and he was correct. Between two blows of the referee’s whistle, there is 90 minutes in which no pundit can interfere and if Hodgson makes his mark then, he is beyond criticism.

The honeymoon period is overplayed. No media darling has ever talked his way out of a 2-0 home defeat at Wembley. Indeed, I remember Hodgson’s verdict after England lost by that margin to Chile in the February before the 1998 World Cup finals. ‘Wembley is England’s fortress,’ he said. ‘You don’t lose at your fortress.’

Glenn Hoddle was in charge that night. He was undone by results eventually, too. History pretends he resigned after relaying a somewhat outlandish interpretation of Buddhist philosophy to a national newspaper, but that is only the half of it.

Those thoughts were first aired in a radio interview prior to the 1998 World Cup finals, but nobody cared. Hoddle was the England manager that had won Italy’s World Cup qualifying group and there was no appetite for cutting down that particular tall poppy.

Later that year, when he revisited the subject, it was on the back of an underwhelming World Cup and a poor start to the European Championship qualifying campaign. Goodbye.

Hot Spur: Harry Redknapp is perceived to be a darling of the British press

Hot Spur: Harry Redknapp is perceived to be a darling of the British press

Was Hoddle hounded out by media No, he went from winning to losing. Results have done for every England manager, even Fabio Capello, who despite going a year unbeaten was never forgiven for the 2010 World Cup finals debacle.

The press view is invariably divided anyway. Hodgson’s decisions will split opinion, as Capello’s did, as Redknapp’s would have. Yet to read some of the more outraged responses to criticism of Hodgson’s appointment, one would think the football press lived in Harry’s loft space on a diet of jellied eels.

Any resistance to Hodgson is a southern media conspiracy. Truth is, there is no collusion, no cabal, no convergence of interests.

As for geographical bias, where do you think Croydon, Hodgson’s birthplace, is Here’s the reality: of the nine chief football writers at the national newspapers, four are based in London and the South East, two in Manchester and one each in Liverpool, the East Midlands and West Yorkshire.

Hounded out, or not that good Glen Hoddle

Hounded out, or not that good Glen Hoddle

As for club allegiances, three support Liverpool and the others variously follow Tottenham Hotspur, Newcastle United, Fulham, Arsenal, Nottingham Forest and Manchester United. Nobody supports West Ham United or comes from east London.

Provincials outnumber southerners. If anything, Hodgson should be a victim of northern bias. But then how does that fit in with the Redknapp plot These conspiracy theories do not stack up.

Just maybe, there was much support for Redknapp because he was considered the obvious choice for the job: by Sir Alex Ferguson, Wayne Rooney, Steven Gerrard, Martin O’Neill, Rio Ferdinand, Alan Pardew. That does not make Hodgson inadequate; just, in many minds, the second choice.

And this is what so many seem unable to understand. It is quite possible to rate Hodgson, but not support his appointment as England manager; just as it is possible to appreciate the job David Moyes has done at Everton, without considering him the most suitable successor to Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United.

The support for Redknapp was nuanced, not knee-jerk, because it took into account the demands of this particular job; the need to knit a squad together in a short space of time, the delicacy of the issues around the Ferdinand brothers and John Terry and with the break-up of Europe into smaller nations, the number of matches in which England need to make the play and go out to attack.

Redknapp fitted that bill. The idea that media men liked him simply because he is good for a one-liner is facile. If that was the case, Fleet Street would still be behind Graham Taylor. We’ve just done four years with a man who spoke in six-word sentences and he was loved until the 2010 World Cup campaign went bust.

This season, Hodgson has taken to banging his head against the dug-out roof and threw a black armband of remembrance to the floor in disgust. Believe me, we’ll get by.

Do YOU know what football writers like most A winning team. Covering winners is always more fun. Being around England at the 1996 European Championship was a joy; following the doomed qualifying campaign for Euro 2008 was excruciating. On the road with Capello en route to South Africa: happy camping. Once in Rustenburg: holidays in hell.

How to make friends and alienate people: Fabio Capello endured an indifferent relationship with the press, but fell on his sword because results weren't good enough

How to make friends and alienate people: Fabio Capello endured an indifferent relationship with the press, but fell on his sword because results weren't good enough

So nobody wants Hodgson to fail. Many firmly believe England should be managed by an Englishman but, once Capello was appointed, the manager was taken on his merits.

And Hodgson has merit, no doubt of that. International experience, European experience, age on his side — national management is an older man’s game, because younger coaches get bored — and an admired and thorough coach.

Yet the fact remains his greatest success has come in jobs with limited expectation and, with England, expectation is huge. Far bigger than what he faced at Liverpool, or Inter Milan. This is where he has struggled in the past.

If the FA sought Hodgson’s involvement in the Burton-on-Trent project, as is claimed, they should have dumped the various elite and development experts, and used their salaries to pay Hodgson a proper wage, making him technical director. Effectively, he would have been Redknapp’s boss.

So there was most certainly a major job for Hodgson at the FA; just not necessarily the one he was discussing on Monday. Still, never mind.