Date:Monday February 2 2009
Well, Liverpool beat Chelsea and the journalists and pundits are back to the old theme: Rafa's Rant was calculated and accurate, Liverpool are real challengers... you know the rest.
But after yesterday's game any sensible football man with any integrity must stress that once again facts directly contradict the facthes Rafa read from his sheet. And of course I'm talking about the line which is rarely quoted because it would stand in the way of a good little Fergie bashing.
He of the hilarious beard dared to say that opposing players are sent off at Old Trafford while 'we do not see our opponents sent off'. Nobody picked up on it but it's a FACT that Lampard's dismissal was the sixth red card that Liverpool's opponents received this season, and Liverpool won all but one game which their opposition finished with ten men.
And when you add that though Cahill and Vidic had no reason to complain about their sending-offs, Zabaleta, Adebayor and especially Valencia and Lampard can feel very much hard done by.
Yesterday, watching our rivals putting on a non-showing, I couldn't help but felt awed by the abilities of Gerrard. After all, Saint Stevie committed at least three bookable offences yet remained on the pitch for 95 minutes. First, as Bosingwa lay prone on the floor he went up and whacked the ball against the Chelsea defender very deliberately from close range. Rory Delap got sent off for the same offence a day before - Gerrard got a talking to.
Then he slid in on Mikel, foot off the ground, going in studs first. Again, a talking to. Two minutes later, Lampard does the same, gets kicked in the process by Alonso - he gets the red card. And Stevie Me still doesn't get a yellow when he dives in the penalty area, only when he does it out of it a little while later. So, if Riley had been strict with him as he was with Lampard he could have given him one red and three yelllow cards. Even by Graham Poll's count that should amount to a sending off.
Yeah, Chelsea deserved nothing out of the game and Bosingwa should have received his marching orders for his despicable foul on Benayoun - how the assistant did not see that?! - still, it's quite annoying that the Fat Spanish Waiter is complaining about refereeing bias while his captain is getting away with everything and opposing players are sent off regularly when Liverpool can't break the other side down otherwise.
Date:Monday February 2 2009
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