This Week's Rooney Soccer Blog


Soccer Extra By Kevin Rooney YOU have got to hand it to Sir Alex Ferguson. He has been around long enough to know how to get the best out of the players at his disposal. Fergie had his usual press conference on Friday past and made comparisons between the current Manchester United team and the treble winners of 1999. And this was done purely to give the current crop a boost as they fight on three fronts like the victors of fourteen years ago. The goalkeepers of Schmeichel and De Gea. Hands down to the Dane ANY day of the week. The defences are an even keel but the midfield was undoubtedly stronger back in ’99 with Irish powerhouse Roy Keane the engine of it. The attacks are pretty similar in quality but the old boys of 1998/99 have it based on the man between the sticks and the midfield. And Fergie knows this too but he won’t tell us that!! ———————————————————– ARSENE Wenger looked a beaten man on Saturday as Championship side Blackburn Rovers dumped the Gooners out of the FA Cup at the Emirates. The Frenchman is the second longest-serving manager in the Premier League behind Sir Alex. But whereas Sir Alex is now in his 27th year at Old Trafford, Wenger will be doing well to see out his 17th at Arsenal. The fans are in revolt and it’s not hard to see why. The likes of Clichy, Fabregas, Nasri and Robin Van Persie out, Sébastien Squillaci, Gervinho et all in. Arsenal have gone from the sublime, unbeaten season of a decade ago to lying well adrift of the Manchester clubs. And arch rivals Tottenham and Chelsea are BOTH ahead of them in the league this season. They are now out of both domestic competitions. I fully expect last season’s Champions League runners-up Bayern Munich to dispose of Arsenal in the UCL quarters finals. Wenger, the game is up. Go with your pride intact! ———————————————————– EVERYONE is so used to the big guns contesting the Cup Finals each season. How sweet then to see Swansea City and Bradford City contesting this season’s League Cup Final on Sunday. For a mid-ranking Premier League team to reach a Cup Final is an achievement. For a team in the FOURTH division of English football to be their opponents is unheard of. If Bradford complete the fairytale this weekend they will compete in next season’s Europa League. Madness, but in a good way!]]>


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