Monday, February 28, 2011

City 1 Fulham 1; and Hughes on the defensive (irony overload).

In a result that undoubtedly delighted lazy journalists, United fans (happy anniversary Blues, 35 years and we're still here) and residents of Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch, Mark Hughes FC held Manchester City to a 1-1 draw at Eastlands — in doing so picking up Fulham's eighth point in the last four meetings between the clubs at the CoMS.

Of course, we could talk about the match — such as how ineffective we looked without David Silva, how we actually looked more likely to score when a striker (Dzeko) was replaced with a midfielder (Uncle Pat), or how on earth I managed to miss a penalty from three yards yesterday — but people will not shut the fuck up about how good it was for Poor Old Hard Done-By Mark Hughes to get revenge against the three-DM-playing, job-stealing, poster child of negative football Roberto Mancini, as if he was the only manager in the history of football to be replaced before his contract had expired.

Having said that, a 'handshake' between Hughes and Mancini spoke volume of the disdain that they have for each other. Hughes is obviously aggrieved because Roberto took his job, Roberto unhappy that he was stuck with Roque Santa Cruz.

Hughes said of the 'snub': "I always think you should offer your hand in whatever circumstances, no matter how difficult it is.

"I did it and did it with sincerity after my team had been beaten 4-1 at Craven Cottage earlier in this season. I acknowledged his team were better.

"Maybe I misread it but I don't feel Roberto really acknowledged the efforts of my team and what we had done by the manner he offered his hand, by not looking at me."

Mancini rightly countered with the accusation Hughes had done exactly the same thing in November following one of City's best performances of the season.

"In London he did the same," said Mancini. "I know he said something but I couldn't understand what."For you it is may be the best thing in the match, for me, no. It is not important. He should be happy. His team got a draw against us."

Spot the difference?

In fact, Hughes was lucky to receive anything other than a bloody lip after the cheeky way he had a dig at Mancini and the club during the week, then having the hide to defend the job he did at Eastlands. Maybe if he spent more time worrying about defense on the pitch rather than off it, he'd still have a job at City...

"If you look at the City side now, I would suggest some of their main performers, and strongest, are the likes of Vincent Kompany, Nigel de Jong and Carlos Tevez. They've had a huge impact for City." he claimed. Obviously neglecting to mention the fact that Vincent Kompany wasn't a regular starter for Hughes, and has come to the fore this season playing exclusively at centre half. Or the fact that under Hughes, de Jong was a destroyer who passed sideways or backwards, but is now vital link between defence and attack.

He's got some nerve if he's claiming Tevez was his signing. He might have signed while Hughes was manager but that's about it.

If you spend several billion pounds on footballing talent, such as: Jo, Tal Ben Haim, Pablo Zabaleta, Shaun Wright-Phillips, Vincent Kompany, Glauber Berti, Robinho, Wayne Bridge, Nigel de Jong, Shay Given, Craig Bellamy, Gareth Barry, Roque Santa Cruz, Kolo Toure, Carlos Tevez, Emmanuel Adebayor, Joleon Lescott, and Sylvinho (enough players to make an entire match day squad and still leave out Jo) you'd expect one or two of them to be not all that bad, wouldn't you?

And he's doubly cheeky for suggesting that the reason those players he did sign, only underperformed because of the new manager.

"Along the way, some purchases haven't worked for whatever reasons, not really in terms of the ability those players have, but because of circumstances and the thinking of the management team and the coaches. And that happens when there's a change in management."

I'd take City under-performing our way to third place this season any day of the week, than what Hughes dished up under his tenure. Alas it seems that it's not only the managers who can't help but reopen old wounds.

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