March 12, 2008

Horse 867 - Grumpy Sir Alex & Glorious Cup Ties

This is a Horse in two parts: A front end and a back end... is it a patomime horse?

The Front End

The Football Association have contacted Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson and assistant Carlos Queiroz to ask them to explain their comments following the FA Cup quarter-final defeat to Portsmouth. Both parties have until Wednesday, March 19 to respond and could face disciplinary charges.

An irate and grumpy Sir Alex said: "It's absolutely ridiculous. I cannot explain it. Managers get sacked because of things like that and he's going to referee a game next week. He's not doing his job properly and he needs to be assessed. I'm assessed as a manager, players are assessed, referees should be assessed properly by the right people. That performance today should not be accepted by our game."

This all happens to fall into the same vein as José Mourinho when he complained about a supposed penalty against Liverpool in a Champions League Semi Final: "The referee had a very bad game but, like everybody in the game - me, the players, everybody - he made a mistake and his mistake was the Arbeloa handball. But it was a decision against us, a big one. If it's a penalty it's a big decision. If it's a direct free kick, you reduce the percentages for the possibility for being a goal."

It's understandable that when in the pressure cooker situation of critical matches, managers tend to let off steam rather badly. It can't be easy for someone when you're in charge of a football team worth millions of pounds or worse if in the case of Man United, a shade over half a billion quid.

Naturally Portsmouth boss Harry Redknapp disagreed with the suggestion of bias in his side's victory: "The referee was not on our side, that's for sure. He didn't have to be because there wasn't a bad tackle in the game."

The Back End.

The back end of a horse is it's bottom... Sir Alex Ferguson is one of the biggest horse's arse of them all.

Man Utd 0 - Portsmouth 1
Barnsley 1 - Chelsea 0
Middlesbrough 0 - Cardiff City 2
Bristol Rovers 1 - West Bromwich Albion 5

I don't care what anyone says, the romance of the FA Cup is back. The FA Cup being the third oldest sporting trophy in the world (behind the Americas Cup (1851)) has always offered the opportunity for minnows to kill giants; the four clubs who've done this have all slayed theirs and now deserve a chance at silverware.

Quite frankly, I despise the idea of putting Premier League clubs in only the 3rd round in the first place, and this shows why. This year's cup tilt won't have poncy primpped up prima-donnas paid £100,000 a week for their poofy preening but proper football people from proper football towns; playing proper punitive pure football.

As a neutral now (grumble, grumble) the 2008 FA Cup race will be the most interesting and dare I say it, exciting in living memory. The FA Cup is the greatest competition in the world and to top that off, it's back at home where it should be - Wembley.

Brilliiiiiant, Fantastiiiiiic!

And now:

Tony Blair's Imaginary Victory
"The FA Cup"

I wonder if New Wembley also has 39 steps to the trophy like the old one did.

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