Opinion: Manchester United needs to axe Solskjær

At this point of time the Manchester United Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjær, the former caretaker and later hired manager for full-time since 2018. There was at one point of time looking like there was progress and more of a structure in the play. However, those days are now gone.

The United team has been in tatters all of October and November 2021. There only been one victory over Tottenham. The rest have been tragic and humiliating results, which is starting to pile-up on him. After twelve rounds in the league he has 5 losses and 5 victories. That isn’t a sign of strength, but of serious weakness.

OGS after last season was supposed to continue the path of building a strong team. Solskjær was getting new recruits in defence, midfield and attack, which all could boost the team significantly. As a manager with the new signings of Varane, Ronaldo and Sancho. He should have the system and momentum on his side. However, that isn’t evident.

The results are stinking. They are aggravating and the loss to Young Boys seems like a pattern now. OGS should make it look like he has control, but that isn’t how it looks. Instead, it seems like his losing the players and they are talking about their grievances to the press. That shouldn’t happen and with huge egos. The manager needs to show character and a plan forward.

Solskjær seems to be lost. Just like the team is often on the pitch now. He got talented and skilled players, but he doesn’t seem to get them into either a formation or philosophy to win. At United that shouldn’t be the case. He could partly get away with this at Cardiff. The short stint it was in Wales. However, this is just prolonging the agony for everyone now.

OGS should see the writing on the wall. The former team legend and player under Sir Alex Ferguson is now on borrowed time. The Glazers will only save his behind, if their investment is still cashing in. When the buck stops, they will axe him too. At this point in time and with Woodward in control for now. He might survive another day, but he cannot fail much more.

This manager have humiliated the team at City, Liverpool and now Watford. OGS let Watford walk all over the team and mock them. Losing 4-1 away to Watford is a disgraceful thing to do as a United Manager. Yes, the team is at fault, but the manager is the first to blame. He is the man who decides and makes the selection of players. It is his tactics and the manifestation on the pitch isn’t there.

Solskjær seems to fail at this and isn’t able to rise above this crisis. The team was boosted and gotten new manpower. However, that isn’t reflected in the results and instead its getting worse. The manager should have gotten more steady defensively with Varane and the midfield should be more inspiring with Sancho. Nevertheless, OGS haven’t utilised this or other acquisitions in his time. Just like Van Der Beek have been lingering on the bench. While Fred and others have been stinking up the place.

It is a reason why the team is lacking and the manager isn’t able to revitalize the squad. The manager doesn’t have the character or finesse to push them. He is to meek or soft to push these stars into action. In the season 2019/20 he came third in the league and last year came 2nd placed. Now, his trailing in 7th place and several points behind the big teams in top four. His soon at the levels of which he became the caretaker in 2018/19. That says it all about his failure to progress the team.

OGS should have stabilized the team and ensure some sort of winning points formula. He has already two seasons behind him. The man should have shown it, but at this moment it is like he cannot grasp what is ahead of him. The sort of steady losses only ensure his possible demise. Nobody will blame the board or the club to sack him now. It would be risky to be another season outside of Champions League. Especially, after getting such huge names and big signings ahead of the season.

Solskjær will not a be a well sought out manager after this either. He was lucky enough to get hired and have these years as a manager in Manchester United. OGS got it because of his legacy and former player at the club. He didn’t get it on merit or acclaimed managerial resume. No, he got it because of his long-foot at the Champions League final many years ago.

OGS is lucky this lasted this long. That he was able to pull of the last two seasons and the caretaker period. That he was able to do that is more than enough. It is just painful to follow him now. Just like it was the months when he was in the dugout at Cardiff. To be blunt, it is even worse now. Because, there he had nothing to loose, but at United he destroys his whole credibility.

Solskjær is lucky if he survives this loss against Watford. He knows that too. There is little to give now and he needed results to keep the job. Now it is just a matter of who takes over and this terrible display cannot continue. There is no saving grace here. Peace.

Opinion: Tottenham isn’t serious if they appoint Conte now

The London Club and supposed to be pride of North London hires Antonio Conte as the manager now in November 2021. Than the club is an unserious and as badly run as it can be. Conte is going into a mediocre club and without any clear ambition. Neither is there any sort of plan or agreed way forward either.

Conte will burn out his steam quickly. It was a reason why Jose Mourinho didn’t get the job done and didn’t thrive there. This is all Daniel Levy and his way of steering the club. He doesn’t care, as long as the results are decent enough and he gets the club into a European competition. So, he can buy some cheap upstarts, recruits and stalwarts elsewhere. Not like he will buy class or spend fortunes on the squad. That’s why Conte didn’t want to go there in the first place and his salary demands was to high.

Mauricio Pochettino has success with the club and he was able to stabilize the club. However, that wasn’t enough either. He couldn’t even get the time or ability to turn a bad start of season. They just booted him like old dirty fries. No matter what sort of results he had in the past and what sort of style of the play he was able to make onto the pitch. It just didn’t matter for Levy. He couldn’t risk the gravy train in a European competition.

That’s why Nuno Espírito Santo who was the former Wolverhampton manager since 2017 and before that had short stints in FC Porto, Valencia and Rio Ave FC. So, he had some experience before coming into Spurs. However, with the defensive style and the lack of results. It was inevitable. Levy will not risk European Conference League or the Euro League for that matter. Not like the squad right now is made for the Champions League.

Tottenham is unserious when they had the chance to give Conte the transfer window and the time to build the squad in his vision before the season. Conte was out of contract and had left Inter Milan. His a well sought prospect and a manager who delivers results. That is what his known for and his CV speaks for itself. However, it comes with a tag and a ambition as well.

That ambition and drive isn’t in North London. Tottenham isn’t up to scratch or even close to the ideals of Conte. His a mismatch. If you thought Mourinho was bad. Just imagine a younger generation and a more aspiring man coming in where he left off. Not like Nuno had any time or ability to turn the ship around. The Portuguese and Santomean manager had no chance what so ever to succeed here. He should have seen the red-flags the manner of which his predecessor was fired. That should be the blinking light of destruction. There was no way Nuno could survive this mission. Unless, a miracle would appear and some of the squad members would deliver world-class every single touch on the pitch. That’s not happening and that’s obvious.

Conte will not last long in Tottenham. Unless, Levy and the board of directors suddenly is doling money like drunk sailors. That Conte can go to the candy store and pick all the candies he wants. If that’s happening. There is some hope that he last about 18 months or so before burning out. Alas, this will not be a long term fix. Not like Conte has stayed long somewhere, but his results has been stellar. No one should ever deny that fact and his method is to win titles.

Tottenham and Conte will be a disaster. There will be hurricanes, storms and earthquakes come to North London. There will not be peace at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. I cannot see it coming and we need a Christmas miracle to make that happen. Maybe even give Conte some big transfer moves in January 2022. I cannot see that coming, but there is always hope for something supernatural. Maybe even another Sheik or Arabian Prince will takeover this club as well. So, that Levy will not bleed or need plasma to donate for the cause. Since, it is hard to believe he will do this. It is just not happening… Peace.

Opinion: Solskjær is under fire

Every goal disappoints you to concede. If some team outplays you that’s fine – that’s well done to them. But today the first one we gifted, the second one is a set-play that we should do better. We don’t really get our heads on it, and the blocks. Third one, it’s 10 seconds after we equalised. It shouldn’t happen. It’s just one of those things: deal with it. It’s a long ball from Jonny and we should just deal with it. Then the last goal is a set-play again, which is disappointing. It’s concentration, focus, every time you concede a goal” (Ole Gunnar Solskjær after 2-4 defeat to Leicester on the 16th October 2021).

The Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjær is in real trouble. He has been managing the Red Devils for over 2 and half years. Last year he was so close to titles, but became second in both of those races. In the Premier League and losing to Villareal in the Euro League Finale. So, this season has to prove further progression to secure his role.

However, the last month has been an giant issue. OGS haven’t delivered and seemingly gotten rotten results. The season started splendid with good victories and a mediocre match at Southampton. Nevertheless, since Mid-September the results haven’t been any good. The club is currently with 14 points after 8 matches and if the club had won every match they would have 24 points. Not that you expect the club to win every match in the Premier League and be the invisible. But… you do expect to get close with United, as they are automatically a title contender. If they are not title contenders. OGS and United should always aspire at that. That is expected for them.

Yes, before Ole became the manager there been a long run of seasons of mediocrity. The team wasn’t filled with huge talents and had a plan. There was several of managers picking their players and some youngsters from the academy.. While that made the team fragile and didn’t have the amount of creativity, strong defence or even a 20 goals a season striker.

OGS have gotten several of world-class players. His transfer-kitty have been extensive and given him a lot. That’s why you should expect more than just clinging on to a Champions League spot. The club will most likely be in the range of 3-4th this season. As the results of late is soon sending them to far to reach the title of the Premier League. It is just 5 points up to Liverpool, but this early in the season is worrying. Especially, if this club is supposed to be progressing.

The club should be in a better place. It has Cristiano Ronaldo, Raphael Varane, Edison Cavani, Paul Pogba, Bruno Fernandes and that’s players who should make them a big team. Yes, a team with such players can have lackluster and bonkers matches. However, 1 victory in the 5 latests matches isn’t what you expect of United. No, they are supposed to be on the tail of bigger teams. This team isn’t supposed to fail in Switzerland and look like the B-Team of Young Boys. No, that’s not supposed to happen, but that happen this season.

On the 19th September was the last victory in Premier League. Yes, United finally won in the Champions League group over Villareal. Since then the team has lost against Aston Villa away, a tie against Everton at home and destroyed away at Leicester today. This isn’t the supposed moving forward is looking like. Especially not when the manager has gotten such player into his team. There should be some sort of move, tactics and ability to use his squad to assemble victories.

Yes, we do know that Ole has been critical about the amount of matches and how it get players injured. That’s why he couldn’t have several of players playing on the team today. Nevertheless, a manager is supposed to sort it out and have other players to squad to cover the others. If not, the team is needs solid tactics. The manager needs to fix that and show his ability to deliver results. Even when his stars are off the pitch. That doesn’t seem possible with Ole. Not that this point at least.

People are even questioning if the players are following a certain philosophy or strategy. Maybe, Ole has been saved by the general star-power. That the team has certain individuals who can change the matches on their own. OGS knows this, but who has seen significant style or playing style in the last two years?

People are questioning that… and it’s natural after this long time without a victory in the league. While the results earlier in the season should be proof that there was something on the way. Now, people are naturally questioning it all.

OGS should show it and prove that he can carry this weight. He is not in “transition” anymore. That train is sort of over. He has had over 2 years to build and the results should start to come now. The instability and uncertainty should be over. However, that is never ending.

Ole is asked to be sacked by plenty of people now. That’s natural even if the place in the League isn’t all out of order and it’s still easy to get into top 4. However, that was Wenger’s plan for Arsenal and was mocked years ago by United fans and everyone else. Especially now that United club has invested and gotten new players ahead of this season. You would thinks was looking more rosy. However, they are not and now everything is point at the manager.

OGS needs results and quickly. He needs to prove the early start of the season wasn’t fluke. The good results of 4 and 5 goals and not really concede a lot goals. Now, that is backfiring and the team isn’t delivering.

After all this time and transfer windows… shouldn’t this project look better and show signs of progress?

Yes, a team and squads have periods and dip of form. That is natural, but the team shouldn’t make it look so dire as today. The choices of the manager should be questioned. The recent results aren’t just speculation, but adding pressure. Right now OGS cannot go much longer without delivering. He needs a lot of victories in a row. That’s what he needs and what United needs as well. Especially, if the club isn’t planning to fall behind the top 4, which could easily happen if this continues.

Ronaldo cannot play all matches, neither can anyone else. That’s why he needs a steady rotation and have a back-up plan. That doesn’t seem viable today and maybe that’s not on the program tomorrow. However, that is needed quickly and he needs to prove he has this. People shouldn’t be able to question him and his style of play. That should be instilled into the players and be visible to the crowds, which isn’t happening now.

Ole do you want this job or are you clueless these days? What is happening? Or was the stint at Cardiff a warning of what is ahead for United? Peace.

Opinion: [Ashley finally gone] Will the Saudi’s now spend like crazy on Newcastle United?

I was being offered the chance to own one of the jewels, one of the diamonds of the Premier League. There was no hesitation”Mike Ashley (May 2007).

The historical and proud club of Newcastle United go as far back as 1892. This Football Club wasn’t launched in day and has been the pride of the city in North. The Geordie calls this club ‘the Toon’ which is their way of pronouncing town.

The club have been based on St. James Park since 1895. They have won 4 titles as champions in First Division/Premier League and 6 FA Cup titles. We can state that three of First Division titles was taken early in century, as the titles was won in 1905, 1907 and 1908. That last title was in 1927. After that they won the FA Cup 3 times in the 1950s and the last golden era was in 1990s.

In the 1990s they we’re the runners up twice in the Premier League in 1996 and 1997. When the club got the all-time goal-scorer and striker Alan Shearer. So, its been a few years since they had a strike and been a top team in the league.

During Mike Ashley’s ownership the club haven’t amazed with great results. It had one top six position in 2011/12 season. Since then it has been mediocrity and some seasons in the Championship after relegations. They have been two seasons in the Championship in this period. Still, the owner haven’t invested or done anything significant with the squad. Neither, has he tried or had the ability to hire unique managers. The only lucky pick was Rafael Benitez who had won titles elsewhere, but delivered same mediocrity as everyone else. However, he got legend status doing so. While others like Steve Bruce has gotten a handful for doing the same. Not like the owner has given he funds or transfer-kitty to actually get well talented players to St. James Park.

Now, the Saudi Arabian investment fund is coming in and will own a huge portion of the club. The Kingdom will have associates and stakes directly involved. That is not with a coincidence. The Saudi Consortium led by Public Investment Fund (PIF) will give amass power to the King and his associates. They are buying goodwill and easy ways of getting good press. The King just needs to get a few major players and results. Everything will be golden from there.

The Toon might sound different and will act with swift action in the next transfer window. Not be shocked if a new Football Director and other high ranking officials will come from the Saudi Consortium. That usually comes with the deal. Not that the PIF only sits in the Board of Directors of the Club. No, they are owners and they will act upon it. Especially after spending a fortune for this diamond.

Mike Ashley paid £135m for the club in 2007 and in 2021 his selling for £300m. The former owner has earned a fortune selling it. A club he never really invested in, except for buying it. The club didn’t excel or make any significant titles. There were never really trying, except for the one season with Alan Pardew. The rest have been abysmal.

The Saudis might make changes to that. They might bring to the table what has happened in Chelsea or Manchester City. This is to bring money-ball to Newcastle. The supporters are already happy to get rid of Ashley, but now they have to deal with the Saudi’s. We have to see if that is happy marriage. If not with that sort of price. You can expect a bloody divorce. Peace.

Confederation Africaine de Football (CAF): Media statement by CAF President on hosting the FIFA World Cup every two years (14.09.2021)

Opinion: Arteta’s Arsenal screams of relegation

If someone is heading the “sack-race” of the Premier League this season it must be Arsenal Manager Mikel Arteta Amatriain. The man who has been the manager since 2019. He has promised a “process” and that this is a “transition”. However, nothing is looking stellar or neither promising.

What is striking as an outsider. The “invisibles” or one-pass playing Arsenal is long gone. The attacking and team with a clear playing style has gone. The Emirates Stadium isn’t a frightful stadium to visit. Neither are they are dangerous competitor in the away matches. It is like the team is lacking both confidence and a means to an end.

Yes, Arteta is a good figurehead. He knows how to be at interviews and be in the public. Nevertheless, what is served on the pitch is a disgrace. It isn’t any will or hunger to strike back. Neither, is there a clear philosophy. Even long-balls on a huge striker is more understandable than what Arsenal under Arteta is. That says a lot. Mourinho’s “Parking the Bus” is more effective and understandable, than whatever Arsenal is doing at this current time.

Well, it is only three matches and the players need more time. To that I say… his been there since 2019 and the few sailors who came in this window should see and reflect on what the others are doing. The Arteta as a manager and his team should have instilled and implemented the vision to all the other players. Alas, that is not visible to us seeing them.

Arsenal was already falling flat and becoming less interesting in the final years of Wenger. While at least delivered cup wins and a favourable 4 place to get into the Champions League. This was done by recruiting well and finding players fitting to the style of play Wenger sought after. However, now they are searching for the future, but nobody knows what that looks like. Neither does it seems the current recruiters knows either.

The zero points after three matches is just the culmination of it. What is also tragic is the manner which they have played. Not scoring goals, not even hitting the goal inside the box or being on the counter-attack. There are so many flaws and it doesn’t look any promising.

Arteta is the captain of a sinking ship and there seems no way to save it. He can seemingly throw the whole squad into the mix and still not get viable results. There is a need for a swift change, both in spirit and in will on the pitch. The missing philosophy in combination with a lacking playing-style is only hurting the team.

I wonder, if Arteta is up for it and can face the challenges ahead? Does he have the character and ability to assemble a squad and make it a force to be reckon with?

At this very moment… that seems unlikely. The manager has Mount Everest to climb and seems to have nobody around used to cross even the smallest of hills. It is not only Arteta that is lacking, but the people around him. They are part of transition that seems to nowhere and the results are screaming relegation. As the team is even beneath Norwich, which is deemed direct relegation before the season start.

Arteta have to boost confidence and prove that his project is worth damn while saving this season. That is not easy for a rookie. The patience of the owners is just lasting for so long and they cannot afford to be outside of the Premier League either. That’s why Arteta’s next moves has to show results and actually heart. Not just being beaten and look like a Championship side in the wrong league. That’s usually for teams of a different stature than Arsenal. However, all big team fails at one point and goes down a division.

Maybe, it’s their turn like other greats gone down to smell the coffee and have to return to fight for another day. However, that would still be terrible and be a daft legacy to put on your name. That you, Arteta during your reign as manager was able to relegate a legendary and great team as Arsenal. Peace.

Opinion: Pochettino got no excuses [and he got to win trophies now]

There is no more jokes anymore or open questions about the possible talent in the Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) squad. This club got to conquer the Ligue 1 and possibly win the Champions League. The recent additions to an already great squad should be all the reasons for a cake-walk of a season. Not talking about the salaries and the spending on these players, which is vastly different from the rest of the French League.

This year, Mauricio Pochettino got to achieve greatness now. He better become a victor and not prolong the agony with another second place in the league. The manager better have a victory run unknown to men. This because the move of Lionel Messi should say it all. That the PSG is getting Messi should ensure the season and trophies.

However, the PSG have already gotten a world class recruits ahead of the season. They have gotten AC Milan’s goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma (free transfer), Real Madrid’s centre-back Sergio Ramos (free transfer) , Inter Milan’s Right-Back Achraf Hakimi and Liverpool’s Central Midfield Georginio Wijnaldum (free transfer). All of these players are winners and been vital players in their teams. They have all been victors and been successful. While Lionel Messi also on free transfer from Barcelona.

Not like the PSG got lack of talent before all of these players arrived to the French Capital. No, the team had already Goalkeeper Keylor Navas, Central Midfield Marco Verratti, Left Wing Neymar, Right Winger Ángel Di María, Centre Forward Kylian Mbappé and Mauro Icardi. This is just to mention a few and then leaving out Draxler and Gueye who is world-class as well.

Therefore, this team is packed and has a players who can change matches. The PSG should with all these player be superior in France and be able to challenge anyone in the Champions League. If they cannot do this with this squad. They never will succeed. Because, they have the stars, the experience and the possible goal-scorers to make a winning team.

The only question now with possibly Messi arriving in Paris. Will Pochettino be able to handle all this and the pressure put on him. He can skate away and linger on the lack of talent. It is not like he can complain that he doesn’t have a player or big enough squad to succeed. Because, this is the Football Manager or Champions Manager dream-team. It is the sort of trade-off and recruitment your dream of achieving in fantasy football. This is usually only happening in the virtual world. As the free transfers of PSG is so world-class. That you can wonder what happened to their teams and why they let these players go…

PSG has had the best transfer window any club can have. In a market and when other clubs are struggling financially. When European football is bleeding and lacking funds for salaries and transfers itself. At that time they are able to pick up stars for nothing and only paying additional sign-on fees and such. Which is something they would have if they had bought them as well. Therefore, the PSG has won this and now they got to win on the pitch too.

The Manager got to carry PSG and ensure the results are coming. He has a team to dream of and with such massive skills. That Pochettino has no excuses or say, if the results doesn’t goes his way. The Argentinian manager better show his tactical mind and use these player at full capacity. He has a defence, a magical midfield and strikers to end any opponent. Pochettino just got to execute and secure the win before the final whistle. Peace.

Opinion: Messi leaving FCB …. a legend is leaving the club!

Lionel Messi, the Argentinian footballer who has achieved everything possible in his career. A man who has been the centre of Futbol Club Barcelona (FCB) or Barça. He has been at the clubs since a youngster as the talent was picked up or bought from Newell’s in 2002. The rest is history.

Messi have been a key player, the MVP and the living legend at Camp Nou. Nobody is bigger or more well known right now. Except for Cristiano Ronaldo. The rest is not in the same league as him. It is hard to hate Messi, since he scores goal, win titles and excites every single time.

He has had a huge salary and other perks. The man has had advertisements centred around him just like managers has been picked by him or his team. The Barça formation and team has over the years been built around him too.

There is no wonder why, because in all competitions he has played 778 matches and scored 672 goals and 305 assists. He has several of La Liga titles, Champions League and other cup titles. Messi is an outstanding player and his stats says it all.

Lionel is now 34 years old, but still has more to give. It will be weird seeing him in another jersey than the ones for Barça. He is the embodiment of the club and has had his whole career here. Him playing for PSG or Juventus will not be same. Neither would it be to see him in Chelsea or anywhere else.

He just belongs to Barça. Anyone who has followed football and knows the sport knows this. Where does Messi play? Barça. We don’t need to ask and we just know this. We who follows knows that the economy and the financial situation of the club isn’t cracking. Even if it is one of the biggest earners and has a huge fan-base across the globe. Still, the financial constraints, the huge wage bill and cap-on this from La Liga is the reason for contractual trouble ahead. As Messi anticipates and has a “money-ball” vision, which isn’t fitting the current financial times. Since also other players on the rooster is making it hard to fit in with the wage cap the club has ahead of the season. Therefore, the contract has been the talk of town for a long time.

Now, today it is suddenly out of thin air that’s his leaving. We don’t know where… but where would he go? To a club who European Conference League? Well, I doubt that… even playing European League and not Champions League is out of bound. Secondly, the club has to pay him huge sums of wages, perks and additional fees. Because, his used to the finer things and getting paid as the superstar and extraordinary player he is.

It is just hard to imagine him wearing any other jersey than the ones his been wearing all his career. You know that FCB is broke when they are giving up having Messi. He is the club and been the front-runner all these years. Yes, the club has had other big stars and players which has been world class. It is a reason why they have been contender for the titles and Champions League. That is what is expected of this team.

Seeing a season without Messi in Barcelona is just weird. It is the end of an era. The Tiki-Taka is totally gone and the times of FIFA PlayStation Football is maybe over too. Because, who will carry his weight and his profile in the club? They have names and well known stars in club still. However, none of them can compare to Messi.

That’s why this is a shocker and it doesn’t really matter where he goes. He will forever be connected and be a legend in Barça. Peace.

Opinion: The Grealish transfer is insane

Jack Grealish, the English national, the 25 year old midfielder (soon 26 years old), the erratic and spontaneous player who can create something out of nothing. The player who has been in Aston Villa since 2013 and only other club was Notts County. He has excelled and been vital in Villa during the previous seasons.

Grealish overall stats isn’t that inspiring and grand. In a total of 295 matches he has scored 43 goals and 59 assists. That is in all competitions as registered. He has been loyal and been a team-player at Villa. Clearly all the years and been there since the years in Championship.

He is a proven player for the Premier League, though he is a man of a lot of hype. The stats themselves tells it. Grealish haven’t scored 20 goals a year or been a match-winner on the regular. He has been an uncertainty and could create something out of nothing. However, that was not done in every single match. Grealish have the ability and the sight to do it, but not all the time. If it was so… then the stats would have said so.

It is clear that his hyped up. Grealish have a few more seasons to play. That’s why his of value for Manchester City. They will have in the midfield with Sterling and De Bruyne. That can be a trio and a force to be reckoned with. These are players who has all proven themselves. They have years in the Premier League and in the Champions League as well.

Grealish doesn’t have that, but he has some seasons in the Premier League and 12 matches for the English National Team. So, he has played matches that matters …

He is following what Fabian Delph did in the past. Where he not long ago promised loyalty to Villa and later went to City. Grealish has built his career in Villa and that’s why he has a hype around him. Where he has performed and become established.

Now Grealish will have to show his value. He has to prove that his worth the £100m pound transfer fee plus add-ons. While also surely getting a salary bump for trading clubs. Now he also has compete with not only Sterling and De Bruyne, but also the likes of Mahrez and Gundogan as well. He will be another midfielder and isn’t an automatic selected player like he was in Villa.

Grealish has to really improve and show his skills. He cannot be another cashing-in the check and call it a day on the bench. Not at the price he came with. The fans and everyone else would expect something magnificent. He needs to become a Beckham or something of that stature. Grealish has to perform at the levels of Sterling, week-in and week-out.

Now Jack has to live up to his hype. He has to aspire to become a match winner and not just another squad player. Especially with the transfer fee and the salary itself. Grealish needs to show that he deserves this and belong at this rate. Delph was sold at a low rate of £8m and he didn’t have that pressure.

Grealish has to outperform all expectations and bet the player so many has talked about. He needs to shine and be bloody brilliant. The price on his services says it all.

Villa fans shouldn’t feel betrayed. He stayed loyal and signed a 5 year contract last year. That’s why his such costly player now. He was deemed to be around £60m of value but City is paying about double of that. This means the offer they gave was to good to be refused. I don’t blame Villa for that. To get such a price is for Grealish and it’s good business.

Villa has already replacements and seems to be prepared for the trade. Now, it is just time for Grealish to prove himself and be the genius he is promoted to be. When he wears that jersey and goes on the pitch this season. He better shine like the sun and be bloody brilliant.

Jack has the pressure piled upon him now and its his time to become a Ballon d’Or player. Since they have paid so much for him… and only time will tell if he was worth it. Peace.

Opinion: Benitez will walk alone on this one

Rafael Benítez was appointed on the 30th June 2021 as the Everton manager. He is taking over for Carlo Ancelotti who returned recently to Real Madrid for his second stint as manager there. Benitez isn’t a random bloke or a fella walking into Stanley Park as a manager.

No, his a former legendary manager of Liverpool. The arch-rival at Anfield. The one who had the miracle in Istanbul and secured Liverpool the Champions League. That’s who Benitez is. Yes, he has shown he is capable of making a winning team, but that is long time ago now.

Still, his tenure at Liverpool lingers on. What he said and how he acted. He has long since then worked for Dalian Professionals in China ahead of this appointment. So, it is not like his coming from a winning streak or a place of prestige.

No, Benitez is living of his name. The owners has picked him because of his past glories. Just like they did with Ancelotti. There was a lot of promise, but not the execution for it. Benitez needs to hit the ground running and prove his skills. He cannot live on borrowed time here.

Rafa needs to show results and quickly. That with a mismatch of players, a squad that has been expensively bought over the years, but not with a long term plan. Where several of other managers have picked their choices and possibilities, but not delivered.

There are promise in the team and on a good day. Everton can beat anyone on a good day and when the key players are in form. However, that isn’t everyday and that was visible the last two seasons. Even with Ancelotti spending like a drunk sailor and continuing to haemorrhaging players, which some he didn’t even use like King.

That’s why at this current time. Everton isn’t based to go anywhere. Benitez is questioned just for his past history and words. As he now joins the ranks of a small club and that will linger on until he gets a slice of silver-wear.

Benitez have made this one hard on himself. He knows what he did and that cannot be forgotten. He has now gone from the red to the blue side of the city. From Bill Shankly to Duncan Ferguson. That is just the reality of this.

This will not be an easy walk and here he might have to walk alone actually. It is a unforgiving route his taking. As it is not like it is just water under the bridge. No, this man is walking in the steps of Michael Owen and others who went from one team to a rival. The same he has done now and that will be questioned, as long as his in-charge.

Benitez cannot just fumble the club and play along. He got to deliver and with a mediocre squad and with uncertain transfer kitty. In combination with distrust from the fans and the general supporters of the sport. Since he has gone from one side to the other.

That’s why I don’t want to be in Benitez shoes right now. The walk alone and without the people behind you. That got to be tough. Even for a seasoned and well travelled man like Rafa. He got to feel it too.

The only thing that will redeem him here is actual results and progress. He needs to do like Martinez did in his first season to have hope to keep this going. That’s what he needs and that’s the only way out.

If not there will be quickly singing in the stands: “Rafa sacked in the morning” Peace.

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