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Wednesday's gossip column


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Sheffield United lead the chase to sign Tottenham winger Wayne Routledge on loan. (Various)

 

Portsmouth boss Harry Redknapp has made a bid for two of Millwall's promising academy players in Tom Kilbey, 17, and keeper Sam Walker, 15. (Various)

 

Former Wales striker John Hartson is close to quitting West Bromwich Albion to move to home city club Swansea. (The Mirror)

 

Fulham outcast Ahmad Elrich will quit the Londoners to return to Australia. (Various)

 

 

Tell us your transfer rumours

 

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OTHER GOSSIP

England boss Steve McClaren says he will do whatever is needed to ensure Liverpool midfielder Steven Gerrard is fit to start Saturday's Euro 2008 qualifier against Israel, even if it means going against Reds boss Rafael Benitez's wishes and giving the midfielder a pain-killing injection. (Various)

 

And either side of Gerrard is likely to be Chelsea wide boys Joe Cole and Shaun Wright-Phillips, who will start together for England for only the third time. (The Mirror)

 

England new-boy Joleon Lescott claims he is still unsure of his place in the Everton side, despite being called up into the national squad for the Euro 2008 qualifiers against Israel and Russia. (The Sun)

 

Germany team manager Oliver Bierhoff has described Michael Ballack's omission from Chelsea's Champions League squad as "stunning". (The Daily Mail)

 

Tottenham insists skipper Ledley King has not suffered a setback in his recovery from knee surgery, claiming the 26-year-old is "is making steady progress". (The Sun, Express)

 

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says the quality of the youngsters in his squad is the main reason behind his decision to sign a new contract with the Londoners. (The Sun)

 

And that contract will be signed on Friday, with Wenger committing himself to the club until 2011. (The Daily Star)

 

Bolton striker Heidar Helguson could be out for seven weeks after an ankle operation. (The Sun).

 

Newcastle keeper Shay Given will have 'showdown' talks with manager Sam Allardyce when he returns from international duty after being replaced by Steve Harper in goal against Wigan at the weekend. (The Daily Mail)

 

Leicester chairman Milan Mandaric will approach Coventry in a bid to gain permission to talk to Iain Dowie about the vacant manager's role at the Walkers Stadium. (The Mirror)

 

Crystal Palace chairman Simon Jordan has promised manager Peter Taylor his job is safe - for now. (The Daily Star)

 

 

 

AND FINALLY

Israel midfielder Idan Tal has hit out at Euro 2008 qualifying opponents England, claiming they are little more than long-ball merchants. (The Sun)

 

England and Liverpool striker Peter Crouch has been identified as a marked man by referees across Europe, according to former official Graham Poll. (Various)

 

Wales striker Freddy Eastwood says he will be targeting Jens Lehmann when his side meet Germany on Saturday, adding: "When you look at the form I'm in and the form he's in, I definitely fancy my chances against him." (Various)

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I've read Given's comments elsewhere, and he's portrayed as being a bit whiney (play me or I'm off kind of thing), but actually I think he's been more asked a leading question and stupidly given an honest answer.

Edited by Fop
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I assumed Given was dropped because his groin injury has been causing him a bit of trouble for some time and BSA didn't want to rush him back. It is out of The Mail though so it's probably complete bollocks.

 

Given actually says that its probably that himself, dunno whether the mail completely ignores that bit or just glosses over it though.

 

He basically says he hasn't had time to talk to Allardyce due to internationals and doesn't really know what his current thinking is.

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As far as I'm concerned the man in posession keeps the jersey if he continues to do well. Everything else is irrelevant.

 

Given is the better keeper though so it can hardly be irrelevant. Harsh but true, if the better player is available then he should be back in the team.

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As far as I'm concerned the man in posession keeps the jersey if he continues to do well. Everything else is irrelevant.

 

Given is the better keeper though so it can hardly be irrelevant. Harsh but true, if the better player is available then he should be back in the team.

 

 

He is the better keeper. But football isn't played on paper. :razz:

 

 

....might to Shay some good a bit of competition.

Edited by Parky
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As far as I'm concerned the man in posession keeps the jersey if he continues to do well. Everything else is irrelevant.

 

Given is the better keeper though so it can hardly be irrelevant. Harsh but true, if the better player is available then he should be back in the team.

 

 

He is the better keeper. But football isn't played on paper. :razz:

 

No, it's played on the pitch, where Harper is more liable to make an error than Given is. Your initial post bore the caveat he should keep his place if he continues to do well, meaning he should replaced when he does not. I simply take the view that you don't wait for that error to occur. Top keepers (ie Schmeichel) always came straight back in when they were properly fit and weren't made to wait simply because their replacement had deputised well in the meantime. Ferguson was always ruthless with this. Harsh choices but great management imho.

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Harper has done nowt wrong and doesn't deserve to be dropped.

 

Definitely done nowt wrong and unfortunately should still be dropped tbh.

 

Not really. There should be no automatic choices in the team if we want to be successful.

 

I only dread that should Harper be in goal for the West Ham game and we're drawing 0-0 with 20 minutes to go there might be a chorus of "there's only one Shay Given" bellowing out from SJH L7.

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As far as I'm concerned the man in posession keeps the jersey if he continues to do well. Everything else is irrelevant.

 

Given is the better keeper though so it can hardly be irrelevant. Harsh but true, if the better player is available then he should be back in the team.

 

 

He is the better keeper. But football isn't played on paper. :icon_lol:

 

No, it's played on the pitch, where Harper is more liable to make an error than Given is. Your initial post bore the caveat he should keep his place if he continues to do well, meaning he should replaced when he does not. I simply take the view that you don't wait for that error to occur. Top keepers (ie Schmeichel) always came straight back in when they were properly fit and weren't made to wait simply because their replacement had deputised well in the meantime. Ferguson was always ruthless with this. Harsh choices but great management imho.

 

Take your views onboard. But in this particular management choices area I have to stand by my earlier comment. Signals to the squad as a whole are important and people fighting for shirts is nearly always a good thing. Of course if it was Schemichel then I would put him straight back in. :razz:

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Harper has done nowt wrong and doesn't deserve to be dropped.

 

Definitely done nowt wrong and unfortunately should still be dropped tbh.

 

Not really. There should be no automatic choices in the team if we want to be successful.

 

I only dread that should Harper be in goal for the West Ham game and we're drawing 0-0 with 20 minutes to go there might be a chorus of "there's only one Shay Given" bellowing out from SJH L7.

 

I don't speak for level 7 and obviously wouldnt advocate any anti-Harper nonsesnse during a match.

 

Given is not an 'automatic choice' if you consider that his selection is judged against his hundreds of starts for the team. He is just a very obvious choice. When he becomes the second best keeper at the club then that would become apparent and considerations should of course change.

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If Given had been dropped due to poor displays then I would consider the shirt up for grabs. As it is though Given has never made more than an odd few mistakes since he arrived here years ago and never had a run of bad games.

There are no signs that his standards are dropping so therefor he should start. Harper is a good keeper but unfortunately for him not as good as Given and let's face it he knows this or he would have left a long time ago to try and prove it.

You play your best team in order to win games and Given is our best keeper not on the basis that he used to be great (the way Shearer ended up) or that he produces odd flashes of brilliance but then disappears for games on end (like Dyer) but on the basis that he consistently top class.

 

I don't believe it sends out any bad signals to put someone like that back in the team when they are fully fit.

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If Given had been dropped due to poor displays then I would consider the shirt up for grabs. As it is though Given has never made more than an odd few mistakes since he arrived here years ago and never had a run of bad games.

There are no signs that his standards are dropping so therefor he should start. Harper is a good keeper but unfortunately for him not as good as Given and let's face it he knows this or he would have left a long time ago to try and prove it.

You play your best team in order to win games and Given is our best keeper not on the basis that he used to be great (the way Shearer ended up) or that he produces odd flashes of brilliance but then disappears for games on end (like Dyer) but on the basis that he consistently top class.

 

I don't believe it sends out any bad signals to put someone like that back in the team when they are fully fit.

 

What he said. Harper isn't in there because Shey performed badly so why not put him back in?

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If Given had been dropped due to poor displays then I would consider the shirt up for grabs. As it is though Given has never made more than an odd few mistakes since he arrived here years ago and never had a run of bad games.

There are no signs that his standards are dropping so therefor he should start. Harper is a good keeper but unfortunately for him not as good as Given and let's face it he knows this or he would have left a long time ago to try and prove it.

You play your best team in order to win games and Given is our best keeper not on the basis that he used to be great (the way Shearer ended up) or that he produces odd flashes of brilliance but then disappears for games on end (like Dyer) but on the basis that he consistently top class.

 

I don't believe it sends out any bad signals to put someone like that back in the team when they are fully fit.

 

What he said. Harper isn't in there because Shey performed badly so why not put him back in?

 

Because Harper hasn't played badly.

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If Given had been dropped due to poor displays then I would consider the shirt up for grabs. As it is though Given has never made more than an odd few mistakes since he arrived here years ago and never had a run of bad games.

There are no signs that his standards are dropping so therefor he should start. Harper is a good keeper but unfortunately for him not as good as Given and let's face it he knows this or he would have left a long time ago to try and prove it.

You play your best team in order to win games and Given is our best keeper not on the basis that he used to be great (the way Shearer ended up) or that he produces odd flashes of brilliance but then disappears for games on end (like Dyer) but on the basis that he consistently top class.

 

I don't believe it sends out any bad signals to put someone like that back in the team when they are fully fit.

 

What he said. Harper isn't in there because Shey performed badly so why not put him back in?

 

Because Harper hasn't played badly.

But he hasn't played better than Given either.

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If Given had been dropped due to poor displays then I would consider the shirt up for grabs. As it is though Given has never made more than an odd few mistakes since he arrived here years ago and never had a run of bad games.

There are no signs that his standards are dropping so therefor he should start. Harper is a good keeper but unfortunately for him not as good as Given and let's face it he knows this or he would have left a long time ago to try and prove it.

You play your best team in order to win games and Given is our best keeper not on the basis that he used to be great (the way Shearer ended up) or that he produces odd flashes of brilliance but then disappears for games on end (like Dyer) but on the basis that he consistently top class.

 

I don't believe it sends out any bad signals to put someone like that back in the team when they are fully fit.

 

What he said. Harper isn't in there because Shey performed badly so why not put him back in?

 

Because Harper hasn't played badly.

Harper hasn't played badly for a few games whereas Given hasn't played badly for nearly nine years.

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Drop players when they're on form.

 

Excellent idea.

 

It's not all about form, it's about class. Like it or not Harper is prone to the odd howler, are we meant to wait around for him to drop said clanger and then bring Given back in?

 

The best teams play their best players. Nothing that I have seen tells me that Given is going to be anything short of top class when he comes back so why leave him out?

Edited by Skol
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Drop players when they're on form.

 

Excellent idea.

 

It's not all about form, it's about class. Like it or not Harper is prone to the odd howler, are we meant to wait around for him to drop said clanger and then bring Given back in?

 

The best teams play their best players. Nothing that I have seen tells me that Given is going to be anything short of top class when he comes back so why leave him out?

 

It gives players that competitive edge. No team should have automatic choices. If you play well you should keep your place - and I mean any player, not just in goal.

 

Plus, why change a winning team?

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