Who is right on Europe, Pardew or Laudrup?

Posted on March 5th, 2013 | 43 Comments |

Michael Laudrup and Alan Pardew.
Who is right?
Speaking in recent interview on Swansea City’s Europa League campaign next season, Chairman Huw Jenkins knocked Europa League knockers such as Alan Pardew, who has frequently used midweek European competition as an excuse for his poor League form this season (amongst other things), with Jenkins dismissing such talk as “rubbish.”

Meanwhile his manager, Michael Laudrup, has also welcomed the extra games next season, seeing no need to significantly increase the numbers of his small squad (around 23 currently) for next season’s European campaign. On this Laudrup commented:

“I know one year that Barcelona played with 19 first-team players, as well as a few younger players, and they played every three days. It is possible.

“I know again the risks if you get an injury. Look at what happened to us when Neil Taylor broke his ankle the day after the transfer window shut. That has special implications, but I don’t believe in having 27 or 28 players (27 was about the size of Newcastle United’s first team squad before the new French player were beought in). You won’t have 27 players who are at the same level, so you will still have five or six who never play.

“I think if you take all the games this season, even the two-and-a-half months when we played every three days and had injuries, we always had a competitive team. I don’t recall us ever having only 15 or 16 players to choose from. I felt in that period everyone had an importance in the team. I think two players for each position is more than enough, just about 22 players. That way you can still have some young players, someone with talent and potential (on the fringes of the squad). That means everyone feels important and the young players get the feeling that they are not so far away from playing.”

In this Laudrup is not alone. Managers such as Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola (the manager of that 19 man Barcelona squad mentioned by Laudrup) have also expressed the same preference in the past.

However, Pardew has advised Llaudrup against what he sees as folly, blaming his own side’s poor Premiership form this season on Newcastle United’s inablity to do well in both the Premiership and the Europa League on the size of his squad, though it was one of the biggest in the Premiership even before the latest batch of Frenchmen were imported. When asked hiw Swansea might avoud the kind of struggle Pardew has faced this season, Pardew replied:

“There is not a lot I can say It is a competition that you have to suck it and see how your players will cope with it. Ours have done well on the Thursday and not so well on the Sunday; obviously you have to get both right. But you need a bigger squad for sure because it is difficult.”

So who is right, Pardew or Laudrup?

Perhaps both are right and it is a question of differing styles of play (and training). Managers who prefer a more physical style such as Pardew, Stoke’s Tony Pulis, former Bolton manager Gary Megson and others suffer more balancing League and European campaigns. Stoke’s League form undoubtedly dipped when Stoke were competing in last season’s Europa League and Megson had to throw away a chance of taking Bolton to the last eight of the then UEFA Cup to concentrate on avoiding relegation from the Premier League. On the other hand, the more possession based passing game preferred by the likes of Laudrup and his former Barcelona teammate, Guardiola, can be less tiring than spending most of the time chasing down long balls, then chasing down opposition players when possession is lost again. Pardew’s Newcastle side have been one of the hardest running Premiership sides on a consistent basis. Of course, it can also make players more prone to injuries such as groin strains and hamstring injuries, not to mention broken bones in all the crunching tackles trying to win the ball back.

Of course, it could also be said that managers such as Mourinho, Guardiola and other managers who thrive in Europe on a regular basis have better players than Newcastle United, but then again, with Swansea the reverse is true as their squad is considerably more modest than Newcastle’s. One of their star players this season, Wayne Routledge, was banished from Newcastle after being deemed not good enough for Newcastle by Pardew.

It will be interesting to see how Swansea get on in the Premiership next season in comparison with Newcastle in the current one.


NUFCBlog Author: workyticket workyticket has written 1093 articles on this blog.

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43 Responses

  1. Well lets face it comparing Swansea to Barcelona is wrong for a start, there may have been 19 players only used by Barcelona but the 8 that didnt make the first 11 would probably walk into Swanseas first 11…..It is no coincidence that Stoke had a bad season when they were in the competition, and Birmingham struggled in the Championship until they were knocked out last year, and once out of it they shot up the Championship table.

  2. Micahel Hope-Jefferson says:
    March 5, 2013 at 9:24 am

    “Well lets face it comparing Swansea to Barcelona is wrong for a start,”

    Have you told that to Cheick Tiote, Michael?

    “They play like Barca,” says Cheick Tiote. “Everyone knows about Swansea. They pass the ball well and it’s difficult to play against them.

    “If you don’t have the ball, they’re difficult to play against. You’re chasing the ball all the time and it’s not easy to do that.”


  3. Quality not quantity. We have some good players bench-sitting. Pardew is at least doing the right thing by putting some of the younger players out on loan and the opportunity of improving with regular games.

  4. Grumpy Old-Toon says:
    March 5, 2013 at 11:21 am

    “Quality not quantity.”

    What about Uncle Woy’s Fulham in 2010 Grumpy? Did they have a better quality squad than us? No. They reached the Europa League final with a far lesser squad than ours, and they didn’t have the luxury of a big reinforcement of the squad in January either. They came 7th the season before and came 12th the season they reached the final. They were a more physical side than Swansea too.

  5. Worky. Ok how about quantity with quality, with the emphasis on quality. :)

    I think we actually have that now but I bet MA is getting a bit of a tight sphincter with the wage bills.

    If we had had this squad at the beginning of the season we might still be (or been even) competing for silverware, even with a tactical antigenius at the helm, so any extra wages may have been irrelevent.

  6. McClaren’s Boro? I don’t remember where they finished in the league but by some miracle didn’t they get to the final and then get tw@tted?

  7. GS, in 2004/5 they made the last 16, going down to Sporting Lisbon who knocked us out in the next round. They came 7th in the Premiership.

    The next season 2005/6 the made the final and got hammered by Sevilla 4-0. They came 14th in the Premiership that season.

    That was when Spurs decided to get Juande Ramos, but they forgot to give me a call, just as Newcastle didn’t call me about Pardew before they hired him. I could have told Spurs that they needed to get Sevilla’s technical director as well as he was actually the one behind much of their success at that time, and I could have told Newcastle that Pardew wasn’t that good either.

    It just goes to show you that even multi million £ organisations the size of Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United can be incompetent idiots who don’t even do elementary research.

  8. Grumpy Old-Toon says:
    March 5, 2013 at 4:02 pm

    “Worky. Ok how about quantity with quality”

    The likes of Cruyff, Guardiola, Laudrup, Mourinho etc are right, squads can get too big and the bond suffers.

    Quality? Yes, always, along with the right balance of players of course.

  9. Dont need a big squad ?
    Look at the moment Laudrup is flavor of the month,
    why i have no idea.
    Oh! sorry yes i forgot he just beat the mighty Bradford and won the no-where cup.
    Of course there’s no word of the thrashing by Liverpool the game before, a side that has finally got a good grasp on Rodgers possession, quick one touch passing game.
    The result couldda quite easily have ended up 10-0, instead of 5-0.
    Yeah he fielded a weakened side, so how does that equate to his statement you dont need a big squad ?
    Look it’s true to an extent, but only if you have 19 players who are all considered quality.
    As far as Newcastle are concerned, that has never been the case and all we have to do is consider the Brighton game, where we played youngsters out of their depth.
    FFS we have had starters like Williamson and Ryan Taylor,
    mediocrities at best.
    Its about quality in depth and not neccessary twenty nine players, but injuries take their toll, plus it’s good to rotate or platoon players, cetainly as a horses for courses reason.
    But getting back to Laudrup, seems for some reason or other he is in demand, for possibly a bigger job than Swansea.
    Look the guy inherited a club allready playing a possession style game, introduced by Rodgers and Martinez.
    Yeah credit too him, he picked up a coupla good buys to add to that, but IMO, he has yet to prove himself and following the recent thrashing by liverpool (and lets agree here) a lucky win over us.
    Does not IMO make him any messiah.

  10. Big game coming up Thurday.
    Hiddink vs.Pardew.
    On astro-turf, or whatever it’s called these days.
    Pardew reckons it will be to our advantage as we have players with good techniques.
    Erm! thats as opposed to a side that plays on that surface every other week, i dont know ?
    Some of the stuff that comes out of this guy is unbelievable.
    But i have a feeling this is as far as we’re gonna make it in this tournament.
    Hope i’m wrong, but never had any great expectations for us, just wondered at how far we would get.
    But i have expectations for next season, if we can hang onto our present squad and bring in a coupla reinforcements and in turn dump a few nowhere players.

  11. Worky
    Erm yeah !
    The conclusion was (after reading all the nonsense gobbildygook) it’s actually about Laudrup playing a more direct game, which we are all aware of, and employing basically an attacking system that is more concentrated coming through the middle than the use by Rodgers of a wider policy, which tends to drag defendes out of position, usually taking both defenders to cover a winger in possession, therefor opening the middle.
    Hey! it’s a tacticall decission, and ?
    But as the writer stated the main difference has been the change in personel, which i gave him credit for.
    But the real test came in the recent game against Liverpool, where he (the prince of Denmark) was embarrassed in a game that was no contest from the opening whistle.
    And to then come out having admitted to fielding a weakened side and follow that with a statement you dont need a certain numbered squad, just defies logic.

  12. Chuck, trying to teach you about football is like trying to get a monkey to type Shakespeare.

    “Here we have a club with a philosophy and that is important. Philosophy is nothing to do with formation. It is to do with style. I am lucky because this club has developed a philosophy over several years. This is not starting from the beginning.

    “I can change players, tactics, but not the philosophy. A lot of clubs do not have a set philosophy and their style can change every time they have a new manager. That new manager then changes players. That is expensive and you end up with a strange mixture of players.

    “I don’t say one philosophy is better than another but I think it is quite important that you are consistent in your approach.” Michael Laudrup on being Swansea manager.

    Do you understand the difference yet?

    Laudrup, like Guardiola, Cruyff, Ruiz, Michels etc was in integral part of the philosphy that Swansea copied. He was there well before Swansea were. Managers like Martinez and Rodgers are copyists too and if they were honest they would admit it if you asked. When Rofgers trys to talk about his football, he will often give his own versions of Cruyff quotations, like the one about how the opposition can’t score if you have the ball and so on, but like an over earnest pupil, he takes things a little too seriously sometimes.

  13. Chuck @11: I am not sure about the astro-turf argument. For one, they have just had a 3 month break and I think they only played Europa League games during that time. Also, Moscow is astro-turf but it is not their home pitch. I have no idea whether their home pitch is astro-turf or whether they are allowed to play Russian league games there.

    However, if Pardew risks Ben Arfa on astro-turf for his first game back he is a f*cking idiot. I wouldn’t play Cabaye either, he is too important to risk injuring.

  14. Nope, they have been playing some Europa games at the Saturn stadium, but their home is supposed to be the Dynamo Stadium. That’s three so it’s all very confusing.

    They’re building a new 40,000 capacity stadium ATM, that’s why.

  15. Philosophy ?

    Thats just the worst piece of of nonsence you have delivered so far.
    Attempting to confuse the issue whith philosophy for gods sake!
    Look i broke down the difference between Laudrup and Rodgers is a tactical one, that and a change in personel.
    Rodgers plays a wider game, with more possession and if you had watched the recent games against Zenit and Wigan.
    You would have seen the results of a half season of teaching a new more modern style of one touch, fast passing possession game, which is a pleasure to watch.
    Not only that it’s successfull, not many score four against Wigan.
    I only wish our owner had the foresight, or even the hindsight to employ someone similar,
    Yes even Laudrup.
    Who buy the way, lucked out against a Newcastle side that clearly outplayed his Swansea side for more than three quarters of the game, where was the philosophy there.
    There is no permanent philosophy at any club, there are just managers who bring their own, both tactical and philosophical attitudes when hired.
    It’s laughable to even think of a club with a permanent philosophy, unless it’s about Rangers beating Celtic or NUFC beating S’Land.
    And lets not forget Laudrup had to change very little other than instead of attacking and using width has decided to concentrate more through the middle.
    Whereas Rodgers had to change an entire system, that has taken the most part of a season, it being so different from that played prior to his arrival.
    Philosophy, dont make me laugh !

  16. Worky, I know it is on Astro-turf in Moscow but do they still play Russian games at Dynamo? If so, they have played very few games on Astro-Turf. Especially considering the 3 month break.

    What I am saying is that it might not be as big of advantage as has been made out, and not just by Chuck.

  17. Later, dahn a’ pub, watch the game, MU vs RM.
    Hope it’s a good game and may the best side win.
    I suppose it will be the side with the best philosophical approach, not !

  18. Chuck: I watched the Wigan/Liverpool game and Wigan had no luck at all. I agree it was good to watch.

    Rodgers looks like he may have something. He is a dictator in the Shankly and Clough sense. If he is using Barcelona and Mourihno as blueprints then he may turn out to be a good manager but has achieved little yet. Remember they went out to Zenit.

    Rodgers is also an ego-maniac and has his Brentisms so he is easy to make fun of. When you anoint him the new Messiah you are getting a bit ahead of yourself.

  19. chuck says:
    March 5, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    “Philosophy ?

    Thats just the worst piece of of nonsence you have delivered so far.”

    Er, that was a quote from Laudrup Chuck, not me.

  20. GS says:
    March 5, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    “Rodgers is also an ego-maniac and has his Brentisms so he is easy to make fun of.”

    I wonder if he realises how many times he say “ok”? It’s absolutely infuriating. He seems to be the kind of self absorbed egomaniac who watches videos of himself.

    Brendan Rodgers vs Mr. Mackey from South Park, OK?


  21. Chuck, Brendan Rodgers on how the Swansea team have changed somewhat under his successor, but have still maintained their overall “philosophy,” and how, for him, it’s all about “philosophy.” :-)


    chuck says:
    March 5, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    “Look i broke down the difference between Laudrup and Rodgers is a tactical one, that and a change in personel.”

    No you didn’t Chuck, you wrote the exact opposite and suggested that I was stupid for saying there was a difference. In the next phase, you will try to sugggest that I am actually copying you. That’s what usually happens anyway.

  22. I,m done arguing the same point that was also the final conclusion of the piece you presented.
    (the difference between both managers tactical approaches)
    And you are trying to worm your way out of a situation you once again endnded up in , quoting Laudrups philosophy nonsense and then stating it was Laudrups.
    I never said it was a quote from you, i can read believe it or not and understood where it came from, and at no time did i credit it to you.
    What i did was ridicule a nonsensicle piece of rubbish, that there was such a thing as a particular philosophy associated with any club, that manifests itself on the field.
    Something from Laudrup you presented as an argument, for what i have no idea, probably to confuse the issue as usual.

  23. As for quoting Michaels, Guardiola , Gruyff etc.
    Look there’s very little in to-days football game that is entirely radical.
    The three mentioned above were no more than immitators of people who came before, every so called inovative manager is standing on the shoulders of those who preceded them and most tactical approaches have already been tried.
    Plus i doubt if there is any tactical approach that does’nt have a counter approach that nullifies it and renders it playable at your own risk.
    On the other hand, IMO, the present styles played by certain successfull sides are state of the art, quick one or two touch passing games played at a fast pace.
    Have proven to be more successfull than most and to not use the entire width of the field is shortsighted and will soon become known by other sides, one cannot become predictable.
    An example was both Jonas and Santon attacking on the left, who invariably cut to-wards the middle to get the ball onto their right foot (predictable) hell every defender and fan at st. James” Park could have called it.

  24. What a shame, a game that was shaping up to be a nail biter, was ruined by a poor refereeing decision.
    I remember a time before the introduction of Cards (yes folks, believe it or not) and always found them to be an unsatisfactory way of dealing with violence.
    They tend to prevent players from playing following a cretain amount of cards collected, ruin the game in progress, by sending off a player, which leaves the other side at a tremendous disadvantage.
    What did they do in the day prior to cards, the ref would have a word with the perpatrator and in the rare occasion where a violent foul was commited, send the guilty party off.
    Personally i,m in favor of the system used by both Rugby and Ice hockey, the sin bin, where a player is sent off for a prescribed amount of time, depending on the seriousness of the foul, but then returns.
    But as we are slowly crawling to-wards goal line technology, i’m not holding my breath awaitind something happening with the dumbass card system.
    I’m afraid to days decision ruined a good game, too bad Refs. feel under so much pressure to-day, and end up trying to prove something and end up ruining a game.

  25. Hardly ever feel sympathy for ManU but that was never a sending off offence. Good job he wasn’t reffing our game against Chelsea. ;)

    See that Routledge is being considered by Fabio for a callup. Good luck to the lad, always rated him.

  26. Grumpy Old-Toon says:
    March 6, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    “See that Routledge is being considered by Fabio for a callup.”

    I didn’t know that that Routledge was a Russian Grumpy? :-)

    Don’t you mean Uncle Woy?

  27. Worky, yeah, senility strikes again. :)

    See we are finally getting a showing on ITV after Liverpool was given the hook. Nowt against them but TahTah and thanks for all the fish.

  28. Grumpy Old-Toon says:
    March 6, 2013 at 4:39 pm

    “Worky, yeah, senility strikes again.”

    Grumpy, my mother was a bit like Bobby Robson, ie an old Northerner who would get words a bit wrong, often to humorous effect. She called it “scenic dimension” rather than “senile dementia.” :-)

  29. This issue is highly confused by the designation “first team player.” I don’t see how one gets to 27 in the first team squad before the Frenchies. The only way to get there is to include not only Raylor and Gosling (out for season with injury since before January) and the third keeper (fair enough) but also some combination of players like Ferguson, Tavernier, Vuckic, Amalfitano, Bigi, Sameobi, Abeid, Xisco and Ranger. None of that last list are fit to be in the first team of a PL/EL side, as has been proven. Before the influx from France, the squad had 19 clear first-teamers, one of which was out for the season. As it is now, except at forward, I agree that there’s no need for further strengthening with the caveats that Colo and Simpson will likely need replacing.

    Chuck-if you really can’t figure out why Laudrup is so popular right now I doubt anyone could explain it to you. I still don’t understand why you’re so enamored of the penalty box. It will not solve all problems. It will for example increase the incidence of professional fouls-ice hockey players do this all the time, having made the decision that they’ll take a 2-5 minute penalty to prevent a clear goalscoring opportunity. You want to see football played that way? You’d see a whole lot more 0-0 matches.

  30. worky @ 32: I was going to say that too. Given the squad we’re taking, what we think of the EL as NUFC supporters may be immaterial.

  31. tunyc says:
    March 6, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    “The only way to get there is to include not only Raylor and Gosling (out for season with injury since before January) and the third keeper (fair enough) but also some combination of players like Ferguson, Tavernier, Vuckic, Amalfitano, Bigi, Sameobi, Abeid, Xisco and Ranger. None of that last list are fit to be in the first team of a PL/EL side”

    Tunyc, they are all official first team players, except for the ones who are currently on loan obviously. A few of the players you mention as not being fit to be in a Premiership first team are little different to many who are regular starters in Premiership first teams such as Reading, Norwich and so on.

    As I mentioned earlier, Routledge was banished and deemed not good enough for Newcastle by Pardew, and a “Championship” player by many fans, yet he is one of Swansea’s star players and Grumpy says that he’s now being considered for England. Swansea’s captain, Gary Monk, used to be a League Two player in a team which were almost relegated from the Football League altogether (his current one) and if they sold him they’d be lucky to get £500,000 for him and that’s just two examples. Teams like that also have to field bairns we’d turn our nose up at out of necessity. We have the kind of squad they can only dream about and yet we’re still in amongst them and well below quite a few of them.

  32. Worky, to continue the theme can you remember the Clough Teams that he took European champioships. Barely a star name in any of them (to start with anyway) but they proved what is possible with the right manager.

    Milner was another deemed to be not quite up to to standard by a lot of Toon fans, proved otherwise though has he not.

    Sometimes the step up from barely championship player to international is down to many factors, confidence from your manager to boost the player is one. Another is hard work in any life path. As someone said “Genius is 99% perspiration and 1% inspiration”

  33. tunyc

    Perhaps you did’nt get it as to why i’m not that enamored by Laudrup, or at least dont understand why he is currently receiving plaudits from the media (whereas we are aware it’s about hero worship in worky’s case)
    He beat the mighty Bradford in a cup few are actually interested in.
    But got thrashed 5-0, by a side that could have scored 10, yes a liverpool side, that has been reorganized by Rodgers and now look more like the Swansea side that Laudrup inherited.
    I gave him credit for bringing in a couple of new faces, especially Michu, who he knew from the Spanish league.
    But apart from that, his record is no better than Rodgers at this stage of the league, in which case, could you let me know what i have missed about Laudrupim, that makes him, so special?
    Look this is not a knock on the guy, i would trade Pardew for him in a NY second and believe he’s a decent manager.
    But not to where he is being touted as the next RM or other top club manager.
    So if you can state a case for him, i would be happy to listen.

    As for the sin bin!
    Having watched yesterdays game, MU via RM, IMO a bad decision by the Ref. was responsible for ruining, an up to that time, good game.
    Which looked like a possible victory by MU. though who knows couldda gone either way.
    But we all know a sending off is a major sentance for the shorthanded side.
    Take for instance our game against Arsenal, who had a player sent off, while leading 4-0, we came back and tied it, and almost won.
    In which case just about any system, is better than the present card system.
    Even that employed prior to their introduction, where judgements were made by the Ref., without the mandatory penalties (was he the last man betwee the victim and the goalie etc)
    Look i’m not someone who wants change for changes sake, just look at how the present offside rule can be interpreted.
    Competely subjective, with linesmen contradicting refs at times.
    I have have just read a report where that will no longer be the case, with the new FIFA ruling, to be introduced.
    However i could make neither head or tail of the (to be introduced clarification) which IMO just causes further complication of an already dumb enough change.
    I suggest we just go back to the original simple ruling, instead of compounding an already dumbass interpretation.

    Another change to be expected is the goal-line (technology) which could cost thousands to install
    (you aint gonna see it at Gateshead) with about four or five differing technical means, from electonic chips imbedded on the ball, to a number of high speed cameras.
    FFS whats wrong with putting a guy behind each goal, should be close enough, were not looking for absolute perfection here, it’s just a fcukin game.
    Hey just opinions, like em or not.

  34. Tunyc
    The reason there are more penalties in the NHL is not about a more cynical attitude by players, but the change in the offside rule including the elimination of the two line pass as a foul.
    {The red line)
    I would have thought you were aware of that.

  35. chuck says:
    March 6, 2013 at 7:20 pm

    “He beat the mighty Bradford in a cup few are actually interested in.
    But got thrashed 5-0, by a side that could have scored 10, yes a liverpool side, that has been reorganized by Rodgers and now look more like the Swansea side that Laudrup inherited.”

    But who knocked Liverpool out of the League Cup Chuck, not to mention Chelsea?

    “But apart from that, his record is no better than Rodgers at this stage of the league, in which case, could you let me know what i have missed about Laudrupim, that makes him, so special?”

    Chuck, why don’t you try and learn things for yourself instead of mindlessly bloviating from the point of complete and utter ignorance?

    Swansea had 36 points at the same point (28 games) last season, they have 40 this season.

    How many trophies has Brendan Rodgers won as a manager? Laudrup has won 5 so far, and Swansea isn’t the first unfancied side he has taken to a Cup final either, he also took Getafe to the final of the Copa del Rey, though they lost to Valencia in that one. He was similarly acclaimed there for the flowing football he brought to the club before he resigned.

  36. Grumpy Old-Toon says:
    March 6, 2013 at 6:48 pm

    “Worky, to continue the theme can you remember the Clough Teams that he took European champioships. Barely a star name in any of them (to start with anyway) but they proved what is possible with the right manager.”

    What many forget nowadays were that his most successful teams were managed by a double act. It was his assistant Peter Taylor who used to dig out all his players for him and he wasn’t quite the same without him. He was a great unsung hero in the shadow of big mouth.

    “Milner was another deemed to be not quite up to to standard by a lot of Toon fans, proved otherwise though has he not.”

    Aye Grumpy, the most usual was that old chestnut “no end product,” same as Routledge.

  37. Worky, my point was that you don’t need a team of stars to have a star team.

    By the way Taylor did nowt without Clough either so it was a real double act.

  38. Worky
    Look i know he’s your hero, but Laudrup has won nowt but the “Nowhere Cup”, while he’s been here.

    And Rodgers left him a well drilled side, while he in turn has had to reinvent Liverpool, football wise.

    Oh! was i wrong by four points as to where he and Rodgers
    ended up at this stage, i dont really care, it’s not really relevant but shows you are really digging.

    Bloviating ?
    C’mon guy get your ass outta the thesaurus, as ninety percent of our readers have no clue as to it’s meaning.

    Look you think Laudrup is the second coming, thats obvious, why i have no idea?
    He has done nothing to give anyone any reason to think so.

    And you can’t deny that when he played against Rodgers Liverpool, he saved his top players to play in the No-where cup against the Mighty Bradford now lying tenth in the second division ffs !

    Obviously he expected a hammering, which he got, but had a ready made excuse, he was’nt fielding his best side, yeah right.

    So dont tell me how good he is before he accomplishes something worthwhile, which does’nt mean he lost to Valencia in the Copa Del Ray.