Comment & analysis round up
Quote of the day: “We put on the Man United face only in the second half against Spurs and this is not enough if we’re to win the title. We must make sure in the Champions League and away at Newcastle we are back to the winning mentality we showed in the second half. That’s why I say the problem was inside our heads. It was not tactics, it was not tiredness.” – Patrice Evra
Runner-up: “Was it the perfect response? Yes, maybe, It’s obviously been a difficult couple of weeks, losing the captaincy first off and then finding out I wasn’t playing today. Obviously it would have been nice to start the game but I managed to get the goal so it gets us a point. Today we showed signs that we are heading in the right direction and we’ve all got faith in the manager.” – Darren Bent
Aguero angry with biased referees
Biased referees favour English players when it comes to cheating, blasts Aguero (Daily Mail) Sergio Aguero has accused Barclays Premier League referees of anti-foreigner bias when it comes to spotting divers. The Manchester City striker is convinced that imports are more likely to get a raw deal over penalty appeals. Aguero spoke out after City team-mates Carlos Tevez and Pablo Zabaleta were denied penalties by referee Mark Halsey in Saturday’s 2-1 win at Fulham.
Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero claims foreign players get unfair treatment from Premier League referees (Gerry Cox, Telegraph) Agüero believes that City’s high percentage of overseas players in their squad might be the reason for what he believes is unfair treatment by officials. Mancini and Aguero were furious that Pablo Zabaleta’s challenge on Riise resulted in a spot kick.
Cheating foreigners! Aguero claims Prem referees have pro-British bias (John Cross, Mirror) Sergio Aguero claims foreign players receive a raw deal from our referees.The Argentina striker feels British players get more decisions, despite Manchester City snatching a late victory at Craven Cottage. It was hard to see his point with so few home-grown players in either starting line-up.But it does start a debate as to whether referees are more sympathetic regarding penalties.
Spurs-United backlash continues
Tottenham Hotspur’s historic win exposes Manchester United’s frailties (Jamie Jackson, Guardian) The way Bale tore through United’s non-existent midfield and left Rio Ferdinand flailing in a different postcode before finishing right-footed beyond Anders Lindegaard terrified the home team. Spurs easily exposed obvious frailties in Ferguson’s squad.
Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre Villas-Boas finally justifying hype after historic win at Manchester United (Ian Whittell, Telegraph) After a slow start at White Hart Lane, Villas Boas soon found his abilities questioned, as they had been throughout a tempestuous and ultimately unsuccessful spell at Stamford Bridge, rumours of dressing room unrest emerging in the way they had at Chelsea 12 months ago. Spurs could contemplate three successive league victories, four in all competitions, Perhaps AVB is finally living up to the hype.
Carrick’s head-start headache (The Sun) Michael Carrick admits that Manchester United cannot afford to keep giving their opponents a head start. The Red Devils have now gone behind in five of their six league games this season, with Tottenham holding on to win 3-2 on Saturday.
Shearer looking for management return with Blackburn Rovers
Club legend Shearer open to Rovers approach as pundit eyes return to management(Daily Mail) Former England captain Alan Shearer is considering a return to management with Blackburn Rovers, the club with whom he won the Premier League title in 1995. The Match of the Day pundit can only call on the managerial experience of his brief and unsuccessful stint at the helm of Newcastle three years ago, yet is confident of restoring Rovers to the top flight.
Off the sofa: Alan Shearer wants to make return to management at Blackburn (Alan Nixon, Mirror) Alan Shearer is ready to talk with Blackburn Rovers about a sensational return as manager – as he battles old skipper Tim Sherwood for the post. Shearer is willing to take on the challenge at the club he shot to glory in his playing days – despite turning down an approach before they appointed Paul Ince three years ago.
Bent wants to be in first XI
Bench warfare: Bent gets Villa out of a hole… then has dig at boss Lambert (James Nursey, Mirror) Darren Bent fired Aston Villa to a vital point against West Brom… then had a dig on TV at boss Paul Lambert for axing him.Villa’s record £18million striker was dropped yesterday for the first time in his career at the club. It left Bent fuming after finally scoring his first League goal a week earlier at Southampton. He felt it was a second snub after Lambert took the captaincy from him last month to give to Ron Vlaar.
Darren Bent happy to deliver a point to Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert and England coach Roy Hodgson (John Percy, Telegraph) The £24 million forward was surprisingly dropped on Sunday before proving his point with the equaliser, 11 minutes after his introduction as a substitute. Bent appeared to display his frustration at Lambert following his equaliser and also produced a lukewarm response when the Aston Villa manager congratulated him at the final whistle.