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Ninja Comments
We can but dream At this point it wouldn't even surprise me if he didn't step down after a landslide loss, he's that out of touch. Just need Clive Lewis to step up and go for the leadership.

He might be about to lose his seat

Norwich voted Remain solidly and the constituency flipped in 2015 from Lib Dem to Labour.

What's worse for him though is a strong Conservative second place in 2015 and a reasonably strong UKIP vote (~10%) which could fuck him if the Lib Dems split the vote.

Coincidentally he's the MP in one of the two constituencies I can vote in so I guess I'm going to have to vote Labour then...
Zlatan's done his ACL and PCL according to Di Marzio.

At his age, despite how fit he is, that could be a career ender.

And Rojo's apparently ruptured ligaments too ffs.

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We deserve to go out.
Fucking love Herrera.
It's harsh, and he probably could have used his discretion to give a yellow card, but to the letter of the law it's a red card.

I think the problem with these tackles is the difference between an innocuous enough looking incident and a broken leg is very small which is why referees are (rightly in my opinion) asked to clamp down on the type of tackle rather than on the result of the tackle.

Edit: Also it annoys me that Sky decide to bring the Laws into the discussion and still butcher the definitions.

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Spoke too soon about Mourinho getting to grips with his squad. Fellaini captain ffs.
So Jesse Lingard is apparently getting £100k per week now, that's definitely not crazy at all. Looks like those 5 star dabbing skills have really worked out for him and Pogba.

It will be less than that I'm sure of it. Our wages and fees are always over-reported because it gets people in a tizzy and gets clicks. IIRC Luke Shaw came out and publicly rubbished the similar figure being banded about.

I'm happy for Lingard though, he's not a world beater, but he's a solid squad option and, when we play well, he makes us play better. His problems have come when he's been put in a team, like the night before last, where he's expected to be the main creator. I'm not sure he can ever be that, but he certainly isn't it now.
It should be done behind closed doors though, there's plenty of other players in the squad that he could have a real good moan about imo, Pogba being one of those. But he won't complain about him due to what he's paid for the player and Shaw as far as I'm concerned was just an easy target. Admittedly I've never rated Shaw that highly and remember being one of the ones on here that said Utd had massively overpaid for him, but even so he is still on his way back from a very serious injury and who knows what something like that can do to the mind of a player when back on the pitch.

I really cannot see how saying what he has said publicly can help Shaw, it just adds massive pressure to his game. I'd also love to know what he's like with the likes of Rashford and Martial as both seem to have gone backwards since he took over. Mourinho is great at putting a team together when he can go out and spend whatever he wants but when it comes to bringing through players or simply just improving the younger ones that are already in the squad he is terrible.

EDIT: I will add that i think Shaw is better than both Gibbs and Monreal though as both are awful.

We're inevitably guessing about what has and hasn't been said behind closed doors. You'd think by the time it got to the stage where something needed to be said publicly that has been and gone. Pogba's an odd case, you can see now he's been out injured how much he's brining to the team and he is, by any objective measure of a midfielder, playing reasonably well. But he hasn't been great either, and when you spend the money we did on him you expect greatness.

I do think, though, that its a reflection of Mourinho having a decent grasp on the personalities in his squad. He has put his arm around players at times: Fellaini, Pogba, Rashford, and Martial have been publicly backed at times, and he's publicly slated players at others: his treatment of Mkhitaryan provoked a run of about 6 or 7 games where he felt he had a point to prove but he's regressed back to being useless since. If Mourinho thinks Shaw needs to be bought back down to earth I'd back him to be right about it. He was a player with a lot of potential, but a long way from the finished article and I'm not sure if he realised that himself.

As for Martial and Rashford I do think they're both suffering from typical second syndrome really. Martial had a tough Euro's and has had personal problems off the pitch, and I think between you and Sam you've got Rashford about right. Largely, I think they're suffering from teams becoming aware of what they're about and what they do well and the pair of them currently having to adapt to that. I still think they've got a lot to learn, for example Martial just stands still when he doesn't have the ball, and it is as much a technical deficiency as it is a mental problem.
Good to see Mourinho deflecting his own failings by singling out one of the players as usual. Blokes a fucking joke.

Shaw's had it coming in fairness. Mourinho now has completed the set: every single manager he's had has called him out publicly. The message apparently hasn't hit home for him yet, so Mourinho has gone nuclear. I'd rather see him try and provoke a response from than shift him out quietly in the summer.
Was a good save from Williams tbf.
Nah he's definitely envious of Arsene's job stability, with all the conflicts he's had with various boards I won't be surprised if he's yearning for some peace.
Even if he's the one who stirred most of the shit that he ended up in.

He might like the job security, but he wouldn't be content with merely existing each year like Wenger has. The conflicts come from wanting success, and if he feels the board, the players or whoever aren't supporting him he will fight them until they do. It takes a lot of loyalty from Wenger to, reportedly, turn down clubs where he could win trophies at to stay at a club he's long since proved he can't with.

If existing at a club meant simply going through the motions every season like Wenger had then Mourinho wouldn't want it.

I think his 'feud' with Wenger is he simply can't understand why or how he can put up with it.
True. A backline of Clichy-Kolarov-Stones-Sagna just makes you think what is happening in his head! Not that they have many options (Otamendi is terrible most games) but that is something you would have thought they'd deal with in January.

Well the backline is what it is (its shocking given the money they've spent on it, but we all knew that) but its picking that backline with just Fernandinho in front of them thats the real issue.

Not just because of the lack of protection it gave them, but because of how little they had in the build up too.

De Bruyne having a bad first half anyway didn't help, but I'm not sure that deeper role suits him at all.
Pep really is fantastically naive. I have absolutely no idea what he thought would happen with his team selection tonight. There's thinking your defence is shit and you need to attack, and there's that side. Actually backfired in the first half as they had such little control of the game they couldn't get the ball to their attacking players.
I agree.
Valencia's two-footed tackle and Rojo's stamp on Hazard.

In fairness Valencia should have gone, but the fact he didn't even get booked for that (which was a straight red for me) or the tackle before that which was a much more aggressive version of Herrera's second foul, makes it more annoying.

It's the problem with Oliver really, he has zero idea how to control a game, and then does daft reactionary shit after him being shit scarred of a decision leads him to feel like he needs to reassert his authority.
Should have probably stopped watching at the red card. At the very least I'd have saved myself 60 minutes of Pogba walking around like he can't be arsed.
You can make a case for both cards, and its thick as fuck from Herrera, but this is classic Oliver. Absolutely losing control of the game, and then doing something stupid to try and get it back.

He's sent Herrera off because he A) realised he made a mistake playing advantage and felt like he had to make amends and B) because he realised he made a mistake not booking Jones.

Your point before was that how far it travels does matter tbf.. I can't even remember the incident before but he jumped with his hands in the air to which I said was deliberate. You said by my logic everyone should jump like a pencil with their arms down.


But he hasn't jumped for a header here?
Wasn't I arguing with you before about deliberate handballs ? It's a yard away from him when Pogba hits it.

Not like it matters, Ibra bottled it anyhow.

Which doesn't justify why he has his hands out like that in the first place. He's deliberately making himself as big as possible and its hits his arm.

I think my point to you before was that how far the ball travels isn't the be all and end all, but a way to judge intention. I can't really see the argument that he didn't intentionally have his arm out there, and as soon as it hits his arm then well...
Meant more dubious decisions than just pens tbf

I'm not really sure why thats controversial to be honest, and I'm someone that thinks far too many fouls are given for handball.

Ok, the ball didn't travel that far, but he knows exactly what he's doing there. He's got his arms out as wide as they can go to stop the cross from coming in and it hits his arm. It is about as deliberate as it comes.

Thought that and their penalty were both good decisions, he probably should have sent Arter off, and Shaw was lucky to get away with the tackle in the first half. And then, yeah, the less said about that rubbish just before half time the better.
Real talk, Ibra's elbow was fucking on point.

Hell I'd do it too if I was stepped on the face with a studded boot.

Given how he played today the most surprising thing about it was that he didn't miss.
Something like this has been brewing all season. The amount of genuinely horrific decisions we've seen and then today you have the ref miss a player deliberately stamp on Ibra's head. Ibra taking the law into his own hands, and then the referee forgetting he'd already booked Surmon and taking genuinely five minutes between showing him his second yellow and the red.

Absolute farce. Referee's are just simply are not up to scratch. Two seconds of consultation with a video referee would have seen Mings sent off and that whole load of bollocks that followed afterwards would have been avoided.
Isn't the potential to win multiple trophies at the most popular club in the world a reason? We're most likely not going to win anything anytime soon so if Man Utd had a bid accepted for him I don't see why he'd turn it down, unfortunately for us.

What exactly are you basing that on? This is our strongest period in the PL era sure, but I don't see how this is our strongest period ever.

Football started in 1992 obviously.

Seriously though I've also got the impression that Spurs won trophies before in spite of not being the best team in the League, and basically have been perpetually decent without ever being great. It's probably too soon for that statement in fairness, and I think history won't look kindly on your failure to win a trophy over the past few years, but they're definitely not a million miles away.
I just don't see any reason for him to want to leave Tottenham and go anywhere else in England. Tottenham are a better side than Man Utd at the moment with a very good up and coming squad who should only get better. He always seems very happy there and certainly doesn't come across as the kind of player that would move on at the first opportunity either. Plus other than funding for the new stadium i see absolutely no reason why they would have to sell him, clubs in the Premier League nowadays don't have to sell their best players (thanks to the massive tv money) especially to a rival in the same league.

Its logical from Man Utd's point of view but certainly not from Tottenham's or Harry Kane's.

This is one of those statements that seems clear cut, but when you dig deeper into it is far less so that it seems. They've finished ahead of us twice in the last three seasons, and may or may not do so again (they're favourites but its hardly a decisive advantage), whereas we have won two cups to their zero.

Add to that that this is arguably the strongest period Spurs have ever gone through as a club, against one of the weakest we have for over 20 years, and the fact that even despite their new stadium their capacity is lower than Old Trafford, and they pay their players a relative pittance compared to the other top clubs (which won't change over the coming few years due to the construction of said stadium), nor can they afford to compete for players at the top end of the market, it would hardly be unbelievable to think there might be attractions to moving across.

I think that Kane won't though for several reasons. I think he's probably enough of a Spurs boy to just want to play for them, and I don't think he's worth anywhere near the money it would cost to get him. He'd have to perform in Europe or for England before any club, regardless of whether he wants to leave or not, would seriously consider paying the money that Levy would want to sell (and I think £100m wouldn't be enough if it was us).
Don't know imagine a lot will do with endorsements and such that will be inaccessible if they don't play in the CL or for a big club.

Like I imagine Alexis Sanchez probably has a much larger profile than if he for example went to PSG straight from Udinese, rather than playing for Barcelona or Arsenal. (Although I maybe ignorant about PSG's reach these days)

A quick glance on Twitter shows Sanchez is on 1.95m followers compared to Pastrore 1m and Verrati 200k followers - and likewise the Arsenal twitter has 9m followers compared to PSG's 4m. I'd imagine this is important to footballers and agents when sorting out where footballers want to play football.

Doesn't that prove my point given that PSG routinely do better in the Champions League than Arsenal but have a lower reach?

Arsenal have a large North American and Asian fanbase that I think would be surprisingly loyal if Arsenal dropped out of the Champions League (take ours as a point of reference) and the Premier League is marketable enough in its own right. It would hurt them to miss out on CL football, but I don't think its a death sentence or would significantly lower their appeal to players.
In fairness the likes of Ozil and Sanchez will only come if they can get CL football....

So y'know, if Simeone/Benitez/Tuchel lands lets say Rakitic and Morata next year rather than their Europa League equivalents. And snarky people talk about how new guy has taken Arsenal to the next level, (but also relying on Wenger delivering a fairly consistent level of success)

I've long thought it was overstated how much players want to play in the Champions League tbh.

I don't think the quality of players Arsenal want or need are content simply with playing the six group games and getting a hiding off the first decent side they face. They want to win the thing, and Arsenal haven't looked like doing that for years. Whilst it may hurt them to drop out for a year or two I don't think it will lead to an immediate decline in the quality of player they can attract; it is not like Sanchez and Ozil could have thought that they would win it their when they joined anyway.

Wenger has said he'll decide his future in "March or April".

Can't help but wonder who Arsenal fans expect to get if this is the end, which I think it might well be, and who they might blame if next season they fail to even make the top 6.

The manager obviously, but I think its at the point they'd like to see the club take the risk, even if it back fires, than take another season of predictable mediocrity.
Its been several years now since their Champions League adventures were anything other than one leg being decent and one leg being a catastrophe.

Yeah but competing in the Champion's League would get in the way of their ultimate goal of qualifying for the Champion's League.
Nah, I actually feel sorry for Arsenal fans. That team has no absolute bottle.

Xhaka might be the only one worth something, at least he could snap someone and show some fight.

Genuinely think he's one of the worst of the bunch. Seems to be a passenger in half their games and get sent off in the other half. Good passer in fairness, but doesn't control games like he could.

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Good old Arsenal.
3-0 now to Manchester United, Juan Mata.

Leicester are in grave danger - are they going to be first ever reigning Premier League champions to be relegated?

If they carry on playing like this it's a certainty. We haven't been great and have put 3 past them.

I don't know if Ranieri is a victim of his own success or if its the only thing keeping him in the job, but they're really poor.