The Offside Treble – Bad Start for Manchester United, the return of Cesc Fabregas to the Premier League and turmoil at Crystal Palace

Each week Jen Offord takes a light-hearted look at the stories making the back pages. This week, Jen tries to make sense of the farce at Selhurst Park, pulls apart Manchester United's disastrous start to the season against Swansea, and reflects on a  magnificent return to the Premier League for a certain Spaniard.

Angry Birds

Supporters turned out at Old Trafford last weekend to herald what they hoped would be the dawning of a new era of big wins for Manchester United under new gaffer, “King Louis” Van Gaal. “Things can only get better,” they proclaimed via the well-observed medium of scarves, presumably hoping to mirror the success of 90s New Labour rather than two-hit wonder D:Ream. Alas they were wrong: things could and did get worse, ending in a 2-1 loss at home to Swansea.

But the day was to worsen yet still for Man Utd’s Ashley Young, as BT Sport’s viewers were to witness, in footage that has both tickled and sickened the nation and beyond. Evidently, having taken issue with the match’s turn of events, Young begins what appears to be some kind of tirade against his defensively-weak side, only to be promptly silenced by a passing bird, proving a better aim than Man Utd’s attack as it takes a crap, landing on the inside of Young’s lower lip with chilling precision. I laughed. Then I very nearly vomited.

Food For Thought: The bird may have been offering some thoughts on the quality of United's performance against Swansea

Food For Thought: The bird may have been offering some thoughts on the quality (or lack of it) of United’s performance against Swansea

 

Great Expectations

Special One, Jose Mourinho, has poured characteristically measured and proportionate praise on new signing Cesc Fabregas, hailing him as a “maestro” after setting up two goals in Chelsea’s opening fixture against Burnley, last weekend, leading to a 3-1 victory for the Pensioners. Meanwhile, André Shürrle has reportedly echoed these sentiments, claiming that new signings, one-time Gooner, Fabregas, and Diego Costa, could be the missing ingredients in Chelsea’s ever-mouldering recipe for silver wear.

That said, we’re only one game in to the season and it probably shouldn’t come as a massive surprise that Fabregas’ £27m cog in a £200m machine might help grind the £5m starting XI of newly-promoted Burnley, into submission. It’s like when your boss thanks you for turning up at work to do your job, which you’re paid to do, and you mostly enact with staggering mediocrity. Though it’s considerably more irritating in this case, when we’re talking about one of the early favourites to win the league and has vast sums of money at its disposal – if the expectation is anything other than a trouncing of Burnley, something has gone wrong.

Will Arsène Wenger live to rue passing up on the chance to resign Cesc Fabregas from Barcelona?

Will Arsène Wenger live to rue passing up on the chance to resign Cesc Fabregas from Barcelona?

 

Malcolm in the Middle

Over at what we assume will be the bottom end of the table,Crystal Palace are apparently close to selecting Tony Pulis’ successor, reportedly a toss-up between Tim Sherwood and Malky Mackay. As a Charlton Athletic supporter, I’m delighted with rumours that Cardiff City canon-fodder, Mackay, appears to be the current favourite for the job.

Both Sherwood and Mackay were sacked from their previous jobs as Spurs caretaker manager and Cardiff manager, respectively, but the former did at least steer the good ship Spurs to a respectable sixth place in the league, following Andre Villas-Boas’ departure. Yes the stats are patchy, and he did only preside over 28 games, but at least he won half of them. On the other hand, while Mackay had a bit more time to prove his incompetence last season he has little experience as a Premier League manager. Still he gets on well sporting director, Iain Moody, according to the Guardian. So let’s cross our fingers for him…

Malky Mackay's last managerial stint ended with the well publicised "resign or be sacked" threat from Vincent Tan

Malky Mackay’s last managerial stint ended with the well publicised “resign or be sacked” threat from Vincent Tan

Read more from Jen Offord here!

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1 Comment on The Offside Treble – Bad Start for Manchester United, the return of Cesc Fabregas to the Premier League and turmoil at Crystal Palace

  1. Reblogged this on FixSports.

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