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The old Man Utd Thread


ThePixelbarks
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Kinda hard to find out these things stuck out here (Riyadh).

Can anyone find out the odds for me for United losing their next 4 league games?

I'm not a gambler so can't say conclusively but I don't think they accept bids on individual games so far in advance, do they?. A cursory glance at a few bookies doesn't seem to give the option anyway. You'd probably have to go in and ask specifically for a special bet, much like how Kirklands parents bet on their son playing for England.

It'd have to be pretty astronomical odds though given that Wigan is one of the four games and that another, Chelsea, may get cancelled and be replaced by Bolton. Though that alteration would probably null the bet.

Why, anyway? Do you think it'll happen or curiosity?

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People seen that Reina to United talk? It's full of giant ifs, buts and maybes and probably all shite but if there's a clause in he contract that allows him to leave should a bid reach a certain amount then we should pay whatever that clause is.

Proven in this country, proven at all levels, age on his side and Schmeichels no.1 choice. Ideal really, doubly so as it'd cause a riot.

Sticking up for players leaving their current club for rivals:

Liverpool's Pepe Reina has defended former team-mate Fernando Torres ahead of lining up to face Chelsea's new £50m striker at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

Torres's transfer provoked anger from some fans, while Jamie Carragher said there was a feeling among the squad he had wanted to leave since the summer.

But, defending Torres, Reina stated: "Some say he is being disrespectful.

"But, in my eyes, what he gave was huge. He grew up with Liverpool, and Liverpool as a team grew up with him."

Torres, 26, further angered Liverpool supporters after leaving the club on transfer deadline day by saying that he felt a move to Stamford Bridge was a step forward for his career.

Yet Reina, a Spanish international team-mate of Torres, insisted that the former Atletico Madrid forward's decision was no longer relevant to Liverpool's future, repeating manager Kenny Dalglish's message that no one player is bigger than the club itself.

"Players come and go on a daily basis, but what stays is the club and the supporters," he said.

"That is the most important part to the club.

"It is football. It happens season after season, players come and go. Fernando was great for us in three-and-a-half seasons. He did everything for this club.

"Maybe he did not leave at the right time, but it was an opportunity for him. And £50m in the bank is double the price we paid for him.

"It is personal he decided to leave, he thought it was an opportunity for him to keep growing as a player and we have to respect that."

Reina also believes that Liverpool will always be capable of signing top players, a view supported by the recent capture of £35m club record signing Andy Carroll from Newcastle and £23m Luis Suarez from Ajax.

"Liverpool will always attract big players," he said.

"It is an historic club and one of the big four clubs in England and people will always want to come here."

Despite rising confidence after climbing to seventh with three wins in a row, Dalglish played down Liverpool's immediate prospects.

"Our ambition is to get as much as we can from the next game," said the manager. "It's the way I've been brought up. I don't see any need to change it.

"Of course, it's a difficult game. Chelsea are a good side - but I don't think we are too bad either.

"They will be looking at us and see that we are on the up. They will be as concerned about us as we are about them. To have won three on the spin with three clean sheets will give us a lot of confidence."

Torres, meanwhile, has promised Chelsea fans he is on the brink of recapturing the form that made him arguably the best striker in the world.

In his final four games for Liverpool, the Spaniard scored three times.

"In the last two months, I've been playing, if not at my best, close to my best," said the striker.

"I expect to be a bit better for the rest of the season. Last year was difficult with two surgeries on my knees. I needed time to recover. I did."

Despite saying he had a feeling Torres wanted to leave, Carragher also insisted he held no grudge against the Spaniard for moving.

And Torres said: "Hopefully I can play [on Sunday], and he can too.

"I would like to play against him because he's a top player. I like playing against the best, as I liked to play against John Terry and Rio Ferdinand.

"I'm expecting a hard game. I know he's a big Liverpool fan. As a footballer, I'm sure he understands my decision. Plenty of my ex-team-mates have congratulated me for this move."

+ Supposed buyout clause

+ Doesn't rule out leaving to play in the Champions League nad win the league

When probed about his interest in a move to United on Spanish radio station Onda Cero, Reina admitted: "Yes, well Van der Sar will hang up his gloves in the summer so of course they are looking.

"I can't do anything. I can't say anything logically as I have a contract with Liverpool.

"Of course one likes to fight for titles and be in a team that does that.

"We always fought to be in the Champions League and try to win the title.

"But unfortunately it hasn't been the case in the last couple of years."

The Spaniard admitted he would look for a move away from the club if Liverpool failed to nab a UEFA Champions League place again this season.

Reina said: "I won't lie, I want to play in the Champions League and challenge for titles.

Further reports indicate that Sir Alex Ferguson could pay the £20 million in the Spanish World Cup winner's get-out clause at Anfield in order to secure the goalkeeper.

=

IT'S ON

Or all a bunch off guess work, unsubstantiated rumours and altering quotes so as to make the story all but out right lies probably being much more likely.

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Reina would be an outstanding signature and one hell of a coup if we can pull it off. If the odds were against us before Dalglish took over though they're astronomical now. I can't see him sanctioning selling him to us, just as I think he'll stick around to be part of the 'revolution' that's happening there.

Love the new avatar too, bowser.

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I'm not a gambler so can't say conclusively but I don't think they accept bids on individual games so far in advance, do they?. A cursory glance at a few bookies doesn't seem to give the option anyway. You'd probably have to go in and ask specifically for a special bet, much like how Kirklands parents bet on their son playing for England.

It'd have to be pretty astronomical odds though given that Wigan is one of the four games and that another, Chelsea, may get cancelled and be replaced by Bolton. Though that alteration would probably null the bet.

Why, anyway? Do you think it'll happen or curiosity?

I've just got a bad vibe. When I lived in the UK and had a bad vibe about United's upcoming games, I'd bet on them to lose so that whatever the outcome, I'd be happy :D

Wigan's pitch is all fucked up at the moment, isn't it? I wouldn't be so sure that's going to be a walk in the park.

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Reina would be an outstanding signature and one hell of a coup if we can pull it off. If the odds were against us before Dalglish took over though they're astronomical now. I can't see him sanctioning selling him to us, just as I think he'll stick around to be part of the 'revolution' that's happening there.

Love the new avatar too, bowser.

But he's supposed to have a release clause isn't he? That'd take the thing out of the clubs hands. I was reading that him and Torres had the clauses put in, and if true it's 20 or 25 million release which'd be a steal.

I'd also like to say Jonny Damon says HI!, but in honesty it's a very different situation. Fuck it, the owners of Liverpool traded a player (Damon) from their club (The Red Sox) to the biggest rivals (The Yankees)...

Though like you say it simply wouldn't happen if that clause doesn't exist, stories of baseball and all.

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Bookies wont let you bet that far in advance on individual matches as they'll take injuries, form, etc. into the equation. As bowser says though a general bet such as losing the next X amount of games should be okay if you ask in a store. Being in Dubai will make that problematic no doubt.

You can however bet on the derby and the first Marseille game here:

http://sports.williamhill.com/bet/en-gb/search/team/?sTeam=3374&sCategory=FOOTBALL

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But he's supposed to have a release clause isn't he? That'd take the thing out of the clubs hands. I was reading that him and Torres had the clauses put in, and if true it's 20 or 25 million release which'd be a steal.

Maybe not. Here's what Sid Lowe said recently about buy-out clauses:

Aguero's official buyout clause is €45M. Which begs two questions. One, if his buyout clause is €45M why would you turn down a €45M bid? And two, how could you turn it down? After all, isn't that what a buyout clause is for? If someone offers that amount, you have no choice, right?

Right. And wrong. That's sort of how it works, but not exactly how it works.

Spain's buyout clauses have often been set up as a deterrent -- symbolic, gigantic figures to warn off suitors. Sergio Busquets has just renewed his deal with Barcelona for example and his buyout clause is now €150M ($204M). But they do also have a practical use. They form part of a legal framework and also a gentleman's agreement between clubs. Which is why the price is not always the price. Because clubs are not always gentlemanly about it.

Under the terms of that basic agreement, clubs accepted that another club which paid the buyout clause could sign a player without resistance. If it's €45M, you pay €45M and you take your player, no mess and no fuss. It is, essentially, a price set at which you say you will sell.

But you don't necessarily have to sell at that price; that agreement has a legal foundation that is a little different. At an informal level, the modus operandi has been altered since Real Madrid walked off with Luis Figo for the symbolic but just about manageable figure of 1,000M pesetas. The buyout clause remains, but the application of it is different.

Now most clubs are saying: this is the buyout clause, sure, but if you make a hostile bid, a bid that we do not welcome, we will force you to apply the clause legally. And when you apply the law legally, that is a different issue. When you apply the law legally, it is a different price.

That means one of two things, both of which increase the price. Firstly, it can mean adding the VAT at 18 percent. In the past, clubs have agreed to include VAT in the invoice for a player's transfer (which of course can be claimed back from the state). Now, if the bid is hostile, they will not. In other words, the buying club will have to pay the clause plus the 18 percent. So, Aguero's price rises from €45M to €53.1M ($72M).

The other option is for a club to simply refuse to sell -- until, that is, it is forced to. That's where the legal buyout clause kicks in, Decreto Real 1006/1985. But that decree is exactly what it says it is: a buyout clause. A player (not the club) deposits the money, the value of the buyout clause, at the Spanish league and unilaterally breaks his contract. That money, of course, would be given to him by the buying club in order to buy himself out. The problem is that as soon as that money hits his account it counts as income -- even if it is then deposited elsewhere. And so it is liable to taxation at 44 percent. In other words, the €45M is the amount left after taxation. That is to say that Aguero's overall cost is €80.2M ($109M).

The other factor that's significant is that the buyout clause is a Spanish agreement. When it comes to international transfers -- to bids from aboard like the one supposedly from Chelsea -- it is irrelevant. Except as a symbolic price, a reference point from which you can negotiate.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/sid_lowe/01/29/atletico.buyouts/index.html

Granted, that is talking about Spanish systems but it's certainly interesting.

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I've just got a bad vibe. When I lived in the UK and had a bad vibe about United's upcoming games, I'd bet on them to lose so that whatever the outcome, I'd be happy :D

Wigan's pitch is all fucked up at the moment, isn't it? I wouldn't be so sure that's going to be a walk in the park.

Isn't their pitch always fucked? Well apart from the year they relayed it in the last week or so, so that we could win the league on it :) Seriously though we have a 100% record against them and I don't see that changing this season.

I wouldn't be so apprehensive though Kolo Toure ;).

I mean first off the club has a history, especially under Ferguson, of coming back from defeat to win. A Ferguson team also most certainly doesn't just collapse under pressure unlike say Arsenal of recent times, it thrives under adversity and being wrote off. We may lose the next game, but the next four? No chance.

Moving away from opinion to fact for a moment. I take it the bad feeling is down to the atrocious display and unexpected defeat? I refer you to losing against City at home in the Munich game (that was before the take over), 1-0 at home against Pompey and that smashing against Scousers. Three unexpected defeats, each featuring spectacularly bad performances (less so Pompey but it was a huge shock to lose that) and all at broadly the same time (Feb-March). Each season ended with the team winning the league.

Famous last words, to be quoted at a later date no doubt: We'll beat City.

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Granted, that is talking about Spanish systems but it's certainly interesting.

They are talking about Spanish systems and therefore completely irrelevant to any approach between English clubs. The above was in full effect when Spurs did the rounds with their bags of money on deadline day. They offered the buy out clauses for loads of players but the clubs asked for the tax and Spurs said no.

Buy out clauses in England are a much simpler affair as the whole tax situation in Spain is nuts.

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Here is a nice quote about Scholes from a Guardian interview with Xavi -

Is Paul Scholes the English Xavi?

[Xavi interrupts, almost bursting with enthusiasm] Paul Scholes! A role model. For me – and I really mean this – he's the best central midfielder I've seen in the last 15, 20 years. I've spoken to Xabi Alonso about him. He's spectacular, he has it all: the last pass, goals, he's strong, he doesn't lose the ball, vision. If he'd been Spanish he might have been rated more highly. Players love him.

I think Scholes will probably retire at the end of the season too :(

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I'll miss Scholesy more than Giggsy I think. :(

Xavi makes a point though, had the Ginger Genius been Spanish, Brazilian or Argentinian, he'd have been rated far more highly in this country.

As it is, England have produced absolutely nobody with a fraction of his ability or vision in his prime.

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Now Nev's announced his retirement along with VDS and it's looking increasingly likely that Scholes will go at the end of the season and Giggs will probably play for another year, what do you lot realistically think United will do in the summer transfer window?

Obviously Rooney was given some assurances that the club will be investing in top quality players, but to replace that lot would cost 100s of millions, which I seriously doubt the Glazers will spend.

I personally can't see how we're going to move forwards easily, especially with the likes of Carrick, Fletch and Evans seemingly regressing in their ability.

So, what's going to happen? I'm genuinely worried/excited to see what happens in summer, because one way or another it's going to be interesting.

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Now Nev's announced his retirement along with VDS and it's looking increasingly likely that Scholes will go at the end of the season and Giggs will probably play for another year, what do you lot realistically think United will do in the summer transfer window?

Obviously Rooney was given some assurances that the club will be investing in top quality players, but to replace that lot would cost 100s of millions, which I seriously doubt the Glazers will spend.

I personally can't see how we're going to move forwards easily, especially with the likes of Carrick, Fletch and Evans seemingly regressing in their ability.

So, what's going to happen? I'm genuinely worried/excited to see what happens in summer, because one way or another it's going to be interesting.

I reckon they'll be signings in the summer. I expect a Goalkeeper to be signed with Kuszczak leaving to find some first team football. Which will leave us with Lindegaard, Amos and the new signing. Depending on what happens with certain players in midfield then I expect a signing or two. Carrick (who hasn't performed consistently this season at all) but I still like as a player could well move on and with Hargreaves never looking like he'll return we'll probably need to add there. So we could see some change there for sure.

I think we're fine in both the attacking and defensive departments. Evans is a very a good defender who's going through a difficult patch in his young career. However, I'm confident he'll learn and move on from that and become a better player, because he's got the talent as we've seen last season when he was pretty much impeccable. Smalling as looked very good when given the opportunity. Rafael and Fabio both showing signs of improving, especially Rafa who is nailed on first choice now. Add the experience of Rio, Vidic, O'Shea, Brown and Evra and you've got quality players with the right mix of youth and experience.

Striking department is fine in my eyes too. Rooney, Berbatov, Hernadez, Welbeck and Macheda would be a good strike force to go into a season with.

Guess it falls down to the availability of targets and the prices of those, really.

The best thing that could happen is the Glazers piss off and sell it to someone who actually has money to invest in the club.

Of course it is! How likely is that though? I reckon the Glazers would be looking to get £1.5bn for them to sell and thats a silly amount for someone to pay for a football club. Even the mighty Manchester United.

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Xavi makes a point though, had the Ginger Genius been Spanish, Brazilian or Argentinian, he'd have been rated far more highly in this country.

As it is, England have produced absolutely nobody with a fraction of his ability or vision in his prime.

Completely agree, we constantly complain about the ability of English players yet I can guarantee you that when he retires the football thread will be filled with moan..moan...tackling...moan...bias...moan..retired from England despite being played out of position....moan...moan...moan when he would be revered in any other country had he played for them. Not that Scholes will give a shit mind!

Now Nev's announced his retirement along with VDS and it's looking increasingly likely that Scholes will go at the end of the season and Giggs will probably play for another year, what do you lot realistically think United will do in the summer transfer window?

I personally can't see how we're going to move forwards easily, especially with the likes of Carrick, Fletch and Evans seemingly regressing in their ability.

So, what's going to happen? I'm genuinely worried/excited to see what happens in summer, because one way or another it's going to be interesting.

Hasn't Giggs already signed a 1 year extension? I think this summer will be interesting as investment is needed but I actually think the FFP regs will bring down transfer fees to some extent. Neville's retirement is a non-issue (on the picth at least) and United have consistently said they will buy a new keeper in the summer to be first choice. I said something similar in the Liverpool thread with regards to keepers, it could be a buyers market for us, you've got plenty of young talented keepers who might be looing for a step up and only a few (top) clubs who will be looking to upgrade in that department. Barca, Real, Inter, Chelsea are all sorted, Neuer to Bayern is a possibility but other than that Arsenal might be the toughest competition should they decide to go for a keeper.

Central midfield is probably the key area that needs revamping, defense is fine (although if Brown leaves it might not hurt to bring in cover) and we are sorted up front. With Valencia back and Welbeck and Cleverly to come back next season we are good on the wings so that pretty much leaves the consistently underperforming trio of Carrick/Fletcher/Anderson and Gibson, although it will be a miracle if he is still here next season.

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i hear theres more talk about a 1.6b Middle East Qatari buyout again, anyone got any links about it?

Of course it is! How likely is that though? I reckon the Glazers would be looking to get £1.5bn for them to sell and thats a silly amount for someone to pay for a football club. Even the mighty Manchester United.

http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/228404/Manchester-United-s-1-6billion-Sheikh-up

Not saying it'll happen but it has been talked about for a while now.

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No Park, either as a starter on on the bench. I worry he's picked up some injury in Asia. Not worried about Smalling, he's a good complement to Vidic with his pace, and he's been excellent for us so far. Fletch, Scholes and Anderson in midfield which I feel good about. Fletch to mop up, Anderson to bring the ball forward and Scholes to orchestrate. SAF clearly putting a lot of faith in Rooney by starting him up front on his own. I fear if things aren't going well, we have no width on the bench, and Anderson or Rooney will have to switch to the left to accommodate the subs. Hopefully it won't come to that.

I hope Mancini follows through on his pre-match promises and attacks. The last derby was probably one of the worst football matches I've ever seen United involved in.

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We seem pretty flat at the moment, although City aren't really threatening much.

I don't really get why he's stuck Rooney up on his own though. He's not having the best of seasons and I can't see that changing with the way he's playing today. He's looking more frustrated than anything.

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Really even, and surprisingly entertaining, first half. Great goal by Nani, hopefully we'll get another as they look capable of scoring.

Considering how much Smalling was highlighted in the previews he's been one of the best defenders out there.

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