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Old 03-01-2013, 10:57 AM   #51
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

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Originally Posted by Hunter Rider View Post
I think you are right, his lack of pace and strength is why Fergie didn't really make a big effort to keep him, I mean he is obviously a decent player but the hyperbolic comparisons to greats like Beckenbauer and Baresi have proven laughably wide of the mark.
He kinda reminds me a little of Sergio Busquets, Pique could probably slot straight into that CDM role Busquets sits in when he plays which is basically just a sweeper sort of role in behind Xavi, Iniesta &/or Fabregas which gives them permission to roam.

He'd probably be more natural to it than he is CB in my opinion, he certainly doesn't even scratch my top 10 maybe even 20 centre backs of all time list despite how successful the teams he has played there for have been.

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I think we were 3 behind UTD after losing to WBA (RDM's last league game) and 4 behind City (will have to look it up to make sure but I think that's right). So under Rafa's watch UTD have added a further 16 points to their lead over us.
In fairness to Rafa, even though I've already stated I feel Di Matteo's sacking was unjust & he should still be the manager as we speak, the team Rafa inherited wasn't exactly lighting the world on fire. They had been on a rough patch of form only winning 2 games out of 7 or 8 I believe & in the process being knocked out of the Champions League under Di Matteo.

To a degree I feel it's unfair to mount all the blame on Rafa's tactics/decisions & his involvement with the club because Chelsea were struggling for form when he took over, not to mention I'm sure the early Champions League exit lowered moral/heads in the dressing room.

That being said, I don't feel their run of form was so bad that Di Matteo should have been sacked, but obviously Roman must have prematurely reacted & felt that if they had started struggling in the Premiership as they did in the Champions League (which they have been recently under Rafa anyway) then they could miss out on the Champions League football the following season.. which they could do under Rafa anyway. The bottom line is Di Matteo should have been given far more time & that way Chelsea could have avoided one of the most moronic managerial sacking & appointments I can remember in recent years.

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the thing with the interim manager title - ye it does serve to undermine his authority somewhat, is there a need to put the word interim in there? all managers have contracts so why does it being a short term contract necessitate the need for the prefix? he should have just been manager
As far as I am concerned, I see this as completely an excuse for Chelsea's poor performances under his reign. Looking at Chelsea alone look at the other interim managers that Chelsea have had & what they achieved all with the interim title that supposedly undermines Benitez's authority.

Avram Grant: 2nd in Premiership, League Cup final, Champions League Final
Guus Hiddink: 3rd in Premiership, FA Cup winner, Champions League Semi-Final
Roberto Di Matteo: 6th in Premiership, FA Cup Winner, Champions League Winner

Each obviously has their own set of circumstances & time in charge at the club however ultimately Chelsea performed for the manager who the team obviously knew was only an interim/caretaker or whatever you wish to call it manager. I see Rafa citing it as purely an excuse for Chelsea's failings under him & to shift the blame to someone else.

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Old 03-01-2013, 11:04 AM   #52
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

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When someone takes over a team with a contract that is only to the end of a season they are usually called caretaker manager, if I am not mistaken Di Matteo wasn't actually given the full title of manager until after he won the CL. The fact the contract was only to the end of the season sent the same message as the title IMO.
Correct. RDM was indeed caretaker only, and if Guardiola had not ruled himself out and wanted the Chelsea job, RDM would not have been given the proper job in the summer, even with the CL and FA cup wins. As it was Roman only gave him a 2 year contract.

Benetiz moaning about his job title now, 3 months later and £1.5 million pounds richer after accepting that title, is just another example of his never ending excuse making.

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Old 03-01-2013, 11:06 AM   #53
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

New one-year deal for Ryan Giggs

Yay

So long as Giggs's signing for one more year doesn't impact any potential summer midfield signings (which it will), I have no problems as he can have a role to play in a handful of games.

It's somewhat sad to see a legend like Giggs stay on for so long, I hate seeing him be marked out of a game by somebody who you just know that an in his prime Giggs would have absolutely ripped to pieces.

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Old 03-01-2013, 11:17 AM   #54
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

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I can see both sides, on a base level what Benitez said was not that big of a deal but given how the Chelsea fans already feel about him it was simply poking an angry dog with a sharp stick.

On the point of calling him intern manager I'm not sure he could have expected anything different as the deal he signed was only until the end of the season, so regardless of the title everyone knew he was short term.

He's citing the fans booing him relentlessly as being a reason for low morale and thus the knock-on effect of poor results, he might be right, we really don't know, but if I'm a Chelsea fan it would feel like he's trying to shift the blame ahead of the final standings despite then trying to offset that comment by saying he'd accept some of the blame.

The fact is this was one of the stupidest managerial appointments in history, there was way too much bad history for it to ever work and Benitez had no way of winning the fans over, I don't even think some good results would have helped as this was always personal, never just business.
Thank you for all of that Hunter. Nice to see some understanding of how Chelsea fans feel, and acknowledgement of Benetez's blame shifting is welcome too.

And totally agreed on the bold. The optimist in me vainly hoped it could work out, but the realist always thought it was a bloody terrible idea. Whoever it was on the board or backroom staff (many think it was Micheal Emenalo) suggested Rafa should be joining him when he exits the club.

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Old 03-01-2013, 11:18 AM   #55
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

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New one-year deal for Ryan Giggs

Yay

So long as Giggs's signing for one more year doesn't impact any potential summer midfield signings (which it will), I have no problems as he can have a role to play in a handful of games.

It's somewhat sad to see a legend like Giggs stay on for so long, I hate seeing him be marked out of a game by somebody who you just know that an in his prime Giggs would have absolutely ripped to pieces.
That said, the way he was running the game for United in the second half versus Everton makes me think that's not gonna happen any time soon. Of course, he did have a poor start to the season and I must confess I may have voiced my discontent about that too, but I dunno... maybe it's that old saying about form and class.

Anyhoo, as you rightly pointed out this will definitely hamper us being in the market for a midfielder. Though, isn't Paul Scholes calling it quits this year?



Also, wobbly, I'm sorry if you felt offended in some way by my earlier comment.

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Old 03-01-2013, 11:31 AM   #56
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

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T
Also, wobbly, I'm sorry if you felt offended in some way by my earlier comment.
No worries, I wasn't offended, I'm just fed up with fans from other clubs ignoring the obvious subtext behind his comments, saying he is absolutely right, when that 'interim' argument is already a proven falsehood, all so they can take another pop at us over this (it's not happened here really, but it's been rife at some other message boards and in the comments area of news articles sites I visit).

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Old 03-01-2013, 12:20 PM   #57
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

TBH wobbly.... What is huffing and puffing over Rafa going to achieve?

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Old 03-01-2013, 12:24 PM   #58
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Of course I expect fans of other clubs to view it all differently, especially when one of those clubs still adores the manager in question (and likely adore him even more right now), but they have no stake in what's happenning at the Bridge, other than benefitting from further turmoil there.

Mate I hate telling other fans what to think of their clubs,I'm only chiming in because at my club we've had similar managerial appointments to yourselves with similar reactions from fans. Obviously you know the Leeds Chelsea hatred, so you can imagine the outrage when Wise and Poyet were appointed by Ken Bates not as interim managers but on 3 year contracts!

Our current manager publicly revelled in our relegation from the Championship and impending administration

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"As a proud Yorkshireman, I'll be among the first to offer Nasty Leeds my commiserations. Well, I will as soon as I can stop laughing".
I mean compare that to Rafa's quote about the flags? Footballs so fickle you can't take things like that seriously. I've seen you mention the quote about him never wanting to manage Chelsea? It's being reported today that he never even said it. Yet you'll hear Chelsea fans up and down the country offering that as a reason he should go, I've even heard some say they'd prefer to get relegated than finish 3rd under Rafa.... that kind of thinking to me is absurd. No matter who's in charge I want my club (or should I say cloob) to succeed as I'm sure you do, but to me it's appeared some (not all mind you) fans just never wanted to give the bloke a chance. Apparently at Boro there was a chant going round about how you don't like Rafa, he doesn't like you, you don't care all you care about is Chelsea. Those fans to me are class, it's more the blokes holding the Rafa out banners at his first game that frustrate me.

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Old 03-01-2013, 12:30 PM   #59
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

Being a fan of another club doesn't exempt you from having an opinion. The truth is, you guys hated Rafa from the moment the announcement was made. For whatever reasons, the fans never gave him a chance. Undermined him from the start with their constant chanting, sign making, minute of applause every 16th minute. Rafa was never going to be good enough for you. You've said as much. So I really can't blame the guy for being frustrated by the whole situation. Just as I can't blame you or the fans for being frustrated by the performance of the club as a whole. Still, imagine you getting a job and having everyone at work constantly remind you about how much the last guy was better than you and you can never live up to that. Honestly, sure RDM was the manager when you won the UCL and FA Cup but you guys still finished 6th that season. It wasn't like he was setting the EPL on fire either.

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Old 03-01-2013, 12:42 PM   #60
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

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TBH wobbly.... What is huffing and puffing over Rafa going to achieve?
Nothing in the short term. In the long term it will hopefully serve as a lesson to Roman that he can't just dismiss the fans objections so brazenly in future.

It might also finally wake him up to the idiots he has under him advising him on these things. When Rafa goes, whoever was behind his appointment should go with him.

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Old 03-01-2013, 12:48 PM   #61
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

I agree that firing Di Matteo was beyond stupid.... but at that point who would you have wanted in instead of Rafa?

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Old 03-01-2013, 12:55 PM   #62
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I agree that firing Di Matteo was beyond stupid.... but at that point who would you have wanted in instead of Rafa?
Anyone apparently. As long as they didn't say mean things about Chelsea in the past.

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Old 03-01-2013, 01:08 PM   #63
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

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No worries, I wasn't offended, I'm just fed up with fans from other clubs ignoring the obvious subtext behind his comments, saying he is absolutely right, when that 'interim' argument is already a proven falsehood, all so they can take another pop at us over this (it's not happened here really, but it's been rife at some other message boards and in the comments area of news articles sites I visit).
I stand corrected. Sadly I am seeing the same kind of stuff being posted at other places turning up here now too.

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Old 03-01-2013, 01:27 PM   #64
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Dennis Bergkamp is going to get a statue outside the Emirates stadium.

Gunnersaurus will be happy
Apparently these are the other statues that are also planned to be unveiled outside the Grove later this year:

Spoiler!!! Click to Read!:




Spoiler!!! Click to Read!:

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Old 03-01-2013, 01:40 PM   #65
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

I thought this would be a shoe in for the Keown statue

Spoiler!!! Click to Read!:

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Old 03-01-2013, 01:42 PM   #66
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

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Mate I hate telling other fans what to think of their clubs,I'm only chiming in because at my club we've had similar managerial appointments to yourselves with similar reactions from fans. Obviously you know the Leeds Chelsea hatred, so you can imagine the outrage when Wise and Poyet were appointed by Ken Bates not as interim managers but on 3 year contracts!
Oh I know you guys were pissed off by that. However I dont recall Wise or Poyet ever insulting Leeds fans or the club? Bates did it often enough though when he was at the Bridge. Having him as Chairman must have been painful.

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Our current manager publicly revelled in our relegation from the Championship and impending administration

I mean compare that to Rafa's quote about the flags? Footballs so fickle you can't take things like that seriously.
Yeah, that one's worse than Rafa's. Being a lesser insult doesn't stop the other from being an insult though. Thing is those losses in the CL were bitter pills to swallow at the time. With Jose and Rafa stoking the flames as well the feeling we have towards him was never gonna be a good one.

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I've seen you mention the quote about him never wanting to manage Chelsea? It's being reported today that he never even said it.
From 2007, and Benitez' own gob: "‘Chelsea is a big club with fantastic players, every manager wants to coach a such a big team,’ said the Spaniard. ‘But I would never take that job, in respect for my former team at Liverpool, no matter what. For me there is only one club in England, and that’s Liverpool."

Never say never, eh?

And of course, about Chelsea fans...

"We don’t need to give away flags for our fans to wave – our supporters are always there with their hearts, and that is all we need. It’s the passion of the fans that helps to win matches – not flags.".

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Yet you'll hear Chelsea fans up and down the country offering that as a reason he should go, I've even heard some say they'd prefer to get relegated than finish 3rd under Rafa.... that kind of thinking to me is absurd. No matter who's in charge I want my club (or should I say cloob) to succeed as I'm sure you do, but to me it's appeared some (not all mind you) fans just never wanted to give the bloke a chance.
Agreed. I'm one who thought was a terrible choice, but I still wanted him to do well. The group who were immediately on his back were not that large. I figure it's gonna be larger tomorrow though....

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Apparently at Boro there was a chant going round about how you don't like Rafa, he doesn't like you, you don't care all you care about is Chelsea. Those fans to me are class, it's more the blokes holding the Rafa out banners at his first game that frustrate me.
I wasn't at the Boro game (watched it on the internet) but I know 2 guys who were, and they said the Di Matteo chant (which is aimed more at Roman than Benitez) and something similar to what you said there were the only real chants he could have been reacting to (as far as they knew no 'fat Spanish waiter' chants came from the Chelsea lot, though one said he could hear it from somewhere in the ground late on).

The usual banners were around, but for someone so allegedly thick skinned as benetez to have a little hissy fit over the above when we actually won the game, and he had a little something to crow about?

He talks about agenda's in his interview? I think he had his own before that interviewer opened his mouth.

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Old 03-01-2013, 01:44 PM   #67
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I thought this would be a shoe in for the Keown statue

Spoiler!!! Click to Read!:
Had he proceeded to stuff the ball down Brown's throat afterwards, I'd have probably agreed...

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Old 03-01-2013, 01:55 PM   #68
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I agree that firing Di Matteo was beyond stupid.... but at that point who would you have wanted in instead of Rafa?
I don't know about other Chelsea fans but at the time I was still too stunned to think much about who was available and who was any good. The obvious names like Guardiola sprang to mind, but he was ruled out. I thought Luadrup would have been worth a go but he never got a mention. Likewise with Zola. Can't say I thought too much beyond them as Benetiz was named before RDM's corpse had time to get remotely cold.

Rafa, however, would not have made my list at all.

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Old 03-01-2013, 02:00 PM   #69
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

You guys seen Dimitar Berbatov artwork?

His pretty good

http://uk.eurosport.yahoo.com/blogs/...170451023.html

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Old 03-01-2013, 02:03 PM   #70
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Van - Haha to be fair it's probably Browns finest moment in a football shirt,

Wobbly - As I say mate I respect the angle you are coming from and can see why you and others feel that way, I'd also add whilst I do agree with parts of Rafa's rants and understand his POV, I agree with you that he has left out his part in all of this.

Incidentally mate, a couple of seasons ago we had a long discussion about the managerial merits (or lack of them as I thought) of Zola and him being Chelsea manager..... I may have to eat crow soon, he's doing one hell of a job at Watford and after seeing RDM's effect on the players he might be a very good replacement. Would you take him?

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Old 03-01-2013, 02:05 PM   #71
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You guys seen Dimitar Berbatov artwork?

His pretty good

http://uk.eurosport.yahoo.com/blogs/...170451023.html
So thats where his talent went.

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Old 03-01-2013, 02:08 PM   #72
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I don't know about other Chelsea fans but at the time I was still too stunned to think much about who was available and who was any good. The obvious names like Guardiola sprang to mind, but he was ruled out. I thought Luadrup would have been worth a go but he never got a mention. Likewise with Zola. Can't say I thought too much beyond them as Benetiz was named before RDM's corpse had time to get remotely cold.

Rafa, however, would not have made my list at all.
I would have gone mental if you'd tried to take Zola from Watford!

just like Kit I think I was very wrong in the past about Zolas managerial ability

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Old 03-01-2013, 02:20 PM   #73
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Van - Haha to be fair it's probably Browns finest moment in a football shirt,

Wobbly - As I say mate I respect the angle you are coming from and can see why you and others feel that way, I'd also add whilst I do agree with parts of Rafa's rants and understand his POV, I agree with you that he has left out his part in all of this.

Incidentally mate, a couple of seasons ago we had a long discussion about the managerial merits (or lack of them as I thought) of Zola and him being Chelsea manager..... I may have to eat crow soon, he's doing one hell of a job at Watford and after seeing RDM's effect on the players he might be a very good replacement. Would you take him?
In a heartbeat. The man was a legend as a player, a gentleman on and off the field, and the Chelsea fans love him.

And I figure even Roman might be willing to entertain the notion of having some patience with him too...Stranger things have happened...

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Old 03-01-2013, 04:09 PM   #74
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hmmmn I guess - I mean I kinda see both sides to this, it is only a title after all
At the end of the day all the little details aside, it was simply a mismatch.

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Correct. RDM was indeed caretaker only, and if Guardiola had not ruled himself out and wanted the Chelsea job, RDM would not have been given the proper job in the summer, even with the CL and FA cup wins. As it was Roman only gave him a 2 year contract.

Benetiz moaning about his job title now, 3 months later and £1.5 million pounds richer after accepting that title, is just another example of his never ending excuse making.
I thought that was the case with RDM and it didn't seem to affect his ability to motivate the players or get the fans support, in fact despite some bad league form the fans still seemed to want him given the job and time to develop his own side.

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New one-year deal for Ryan Giggs

Yay

So long as Giggs's signing for one more year doesn't impact any potential summer midfield signings (which it will), I have no problems as he can have a role to play in a handful of games.

It's somewhat sad to see a legend like Giggs stay on for so long, I hate seeing him be marked out of a game by somebody who you just know that an in his prime Giggs would have absolutely ripped to pieces.
He's been good since Christmas and actually recovered form by playing in his old left wing position, so I'm not rolling my eyes at this but at the same time I can't help but think the old adage of "Quit while you're ahead" is something Giggs should really give consideration to.

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Thank you for all of that Hunter. Nice to see some understanding of how Chelsea fans feel, and acknowledgement of Benetez's blame shifting is welcome too.

And totally agreed on the bold. The optimist in me vainly hoped it could work out, but the realist always thought it was a bloody terrible idea. Whoever it was on the board or backroom staff (many think it was Micheal Emenalo) suggested Rafa should be joining him when he exits the club.
I can see where you are coming from, an outside perspective doesn't get the emotions that are involved, things are not so easily forgiven when you are the person(s) directly insulted and then asked to accept the insulter as your leader so to speak.

Interesting I thought Rafa was a 100% Roman choice based around his resistance to accepting the Torres deal was a dud.

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Old 03-01-2013, 08:05 PM   #75
wobbly
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Default Re: The Ongoing Serie A, La Liga, All English Football, Champions League Thread

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Originally Posted by Hunter Rider View Post
I thought that was the case with RDM and it didn't seem to affect his ability to motivate the players or get the fans support, in fact despite some bad league form the fans still seemed to want him given the job and time to develop his own side.
The benefit of being liked by the fans is they are willing to cut the manager more slack (look at Wenger with Arsenal). Most fans know you can't win all the time and most of us knew this season was marking a transition with new players coming in like Hazaard and Oscar, and the absence (and non replacement) of old favourite Drogba. I figured the title might well be beyond them before the season, but to be this far adrift is not excusable.

Bizarrely, and embarrassingly for Roman, he has given Rafa more slack then he ever gave RDM, but we all know he never wanted RDM, and must have agreed to giving the job proper with gritted teeth.

Quote:
I can see where you are coming from, an outside perspective doesn't get the emotions that are involved, things are not so easily forgiven when you are the person(s) directly insulted and then asked to accept the insulter as your leader so to speak.

Interesting I thought Rafa was a 100% Roman choice based around his resistance to accepting the Torres deal was a dud.
I think Roman's direct input is infrequent at best. Shevkenko for example was all him. They were mates before he came to Chelsea and Roman wanted his buddy even though Mourninho did not. His signing along with Ballack marked the beginning of the end with Jose.

Otherwise I think he just lets the board (Buck and Gourlay primarily) deal with most it, or goes by the word of whatever 'yes man' is flavour of the month.

Torres however does seem to have been another brain fart from Roman himself though: He had apparently admired Torres for some time, not least as he often scored against us, and in spite of his form in his last half season with Liverpool the OTT fee we paid suggests it was Roman who wanted him big time. Based on his form at the time he was not worth that at all.

With Rafa, if the word within the club is true, the chief architect in bringing him to the Bridge was Micheal Elemanu (he had been pushing for him as early as when they got rid of AVB). Whichever idiot it was that thought of him did so soley for Torres benefit. A desperate attempt to chase a busted flush if ever there was one and score points with the man at the top. Roman, not wanting to give up the ghost with his vanity buy, agreed knowing full well what the fans already thought of the idea.

With Torres still struggling, even under the favored Benitez, and Sturridge proving too wasteful too often (least he was getting chances though...), even Roman had to concede we needed another option. They could have recalled Lakuka, who (among others...) is doing very well out on loan, but went with signing Ba only instead.

What they do with Torres after Benetez departs is anyone's guess. He will be on 4 managers and counting who couldn't get the best out of him. Logically it would surely time to call it a day and offload him...but with Roman, who the hell knows?

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