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Utd (A) FA Cup - Sun 24/1 - 17:00

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    • Liverpool could be without Mo Salah for the start of the new season with Egypt set to name him in their preliminary squad of the Olympic Games in Japan.   The 28 year-old is one of three over-age players named as part of the squad for the African nation with the delayed global sporting showcase taking place between the 23rd of July and 8th of August.   The Mirror says that timeline will see the superstar miss part of the Reds pre-season campaign and at least the opening game of the Premier League season.   The Egyptian Football federation have not contacted Liverpool to this stage but they have due for key talks later this month.   Egypt U/ 23 coach Shawky Gharib confirmed this as well as the selection of Salah in a statement.   “Salah is currently one of the most important players in the world and it’s normal to call him for Egypt’s Olympic squad.   "We will start the official talks with Liverpool after the international break in March."   With the season that Liverpool have had in terms of key absentees, Jurgen Klopp will be hell-bent on starting the new campaign with as strong a team as possible and you can guarantee there will be a fair bit of pushback from the club on these plans.     Regarding the future of Salah at club level, there is often speculation that he may look for a new challenge with Real Madrid often mentioned.   However Klopp knows how pivotal Salah to the fortunes of the squad and remained rock solid in his view that Salah is not going anywhere.   “It's just a bit awkward when I have to praise my own players, which I like to do to be honest, but especially in Mo's case, the numbers speak for themselves.   "Mo is not only a goalscorer, he has developed as a footballer as well.    “He is a very, very important player for us and hopefully he will be that for a very long time of course."        
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    • Defence is everything.  It's why City have gone on their run.  Fuck all to do with De Bruyne or Silva.    My concern is Van Dijk and Gomez still not being fit in August. It's not unreasonable to think they will struggle to get fit and stay fit, especially as every grock team in the division will want to test their knees with some horrendous challenges.     We need to plan for life without them.  We actually need to sell Gomez before he breaks down again. We could net £40m for him of we are cute about it.      Get in Ben White and Tarkowski. Play the numbers. 
    • Agree with this.  The Arab and Russian money has warped football too much, and unless FFP actually works then it's pointless fighting against them and trying to clean the game up. They will run rings around the governing bodies.  They already have.    You wonder how much deeper their money goes, bungs, specifically.  Why not?  It's not like they've got to where they are with ethics or respecting rules. Doping too, we all saw that Russian team a couple of years back breaking running records in games.  It was absurd.    I think a European team is a way of protecting the game from these cunts.  Big clubs sticking together and self policing away from the FA and the referees association.     Yes, the majority of football money will end up there, so what. But the lower leagues have to up their game I'd they want in.  No more of this grock bullshit that only works because some referees and domestic media are willing to overlook blatant over-physicality in search of a 'shock' result.  It's reductive and holds football back from the art-form it should be at the elite level.     I'm not averse to physical football, but I'm averse to unaccountable referees deciding which teams can do it and which can't.  Fuck the British bizzies refereeing top games.  
    • Exactly. People need to be pragmatic rather than hark back to how things were even 20 years ago. City are always going to spend shitloads of money. In 10 years time, it will be 'accepted' their owner is inflating the club's deals, more so with this owning 8 or 9 other clubs, most of which are in nothing leagues so clearly bought to become a vehicle for whatever reason.   Abramovic lost interest in chelsea for a few seasons when mansour's spending blew him out of the water. For whatever reason, his interest has been piqued again and he's throwing money at chelsea. £200m+ for fwank and now Tuchel reportedly in line for another £200m.   Personally, Im shit fed up seeing the same old yo yo teams like West Brom, Watford, Fulham, Norwich and others flit between the Championship and The PL, park 11 men behind the ball and seemingly shit their pants before they take the field against city.   The shitness of modern football isnt seeing Liverpool play the top European teams in a proper league, it's seeing the same shit yo yo teams and a few other perenial PL stragglers come and just sit deep, play 11 behind theball andhavetheir fuckingkeeper waste a minute or so over every goal kick.   Id welcome binning them off and seeing the likes of Juve, Bayern, Real Madrid and a few others.
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