How can anybody even consider sacking Frank Lampard after he took Everton from 16th to 16th and then spent 50p/£85.5m?
Frank Lampard is in trouble at Everton so of course the Frank Lampard apologists are also out in force.
Not sure that £85.5m should be rounded down to 50p, Mike.
Lampard spent £20m on Dwight McNeil, £33m on Amadou Onana, an eye-watering £15m on Neal Maupay just a year before the end of his Brighton contract, £15.5m on James Garner and £2m on Idrissa Gueye.
And they’re sh*t. Absolute sh*t.
Over in the Daily Telegraph, Chris Bascombe argues that we should actually feel sorry for Lampard.
‘Sympathy may be in short supply for a coach who has tried to squeeze an ounce of quality out of a limited squad – at a club where every penny spent is subject to microscopic scrutiny by the financial fair play office – but it should not be.’
Poor Frank. He has tried.
‘It will be no consolation to Frank Lampard that he secured the second miracle of what now looks like being a brief Goodison reign on Tuesday night.
‘If preserving Everton’s Premier League’s status last season was his greatest managerial feat, still being in post when the full-time whistle ended his most harrowing evening in football seemed equally improbable.’
Ah, the ‘miracle’ of Everton’s survival in which Lampard took over a Toffees side in 16th place and just four points clear of relegation. And ended the season in 16th place and just four points clear of relegation.
Christ the saviour is born.
‘Bloodthirsty appetites will naturally scapegoat Lampard for Everton’s dismal position, ignoring the years of meticulous planning undertaken at Brighton to assert such superiority. They even had the luxury of bringing a World Cup winner, Alexis Mac Allister, off the bench with the points long secure.’
Indeed. Though they also started with an 18-year-old striker so let’s have some balance here. Brighton are an incredibly well-run club and Everton are patently not, but can anybody argue that Roberto de Zerbi would not have done a better job at Goodison Park than Lampard?
‘The truth is Lampard is as much to blame for chastening evenings like this as Rafael Benítez, Marco Silva, Ronald Koeman, Roberto Martínez and even Sam Allardyce during their final days. They are all managers of varying pedigree and popularity whose reputations have been sullied by the trauma of trying to negotiate what increasingly looks to be the Premier League’s impossible job.’
There is some truth here but none of those managers was quite as bad as Lampard. Let’s look at the points per game of all those managers – and throw in Carlo Ancelotti, because Bascombe has obviously conveniently forgotten him:
Roberto Martinez: 1.56
Ronald Koeman: 1.48
Sam Allardyce: 1.42
Marco Silva: 1.38
Carlo Ancelotti: 1.6
Rafa Benitez: 1.14
Frank Lampard: 1.07
But at least he tried.
Misery loves company
As Mediawatch makes a long-awaited return after an extended Christmas break, it’s lovely to find that some things really have not changed, like The Sun‘s miserable Mark Irwin revelling in misery.
After months of having to feign excitement and optimism as Arsenal have forged an unlikely lead at the top of the Premier League table, he leapt two-footed into the chance to write about the tragedy of the Gunners drawing against Newcastle United.
‘MIKEL ARTETA suffered another night of Toon torture as Arsenal’s hopes of opening a ten-point lead at the top of the League were thwarted by Newcastle’s spoilers.’
‘Another night of Toon torture’ indeed. For a draw to go eight points clear at the top of the Premier League table is equally as distressing as a 2-0 defeat that effectively ended their top-four hopes last season. What oh what has Mikel Arteta done to deserve such ‘torture’?
‘Though the consequences of this setback are nowhere near as serious for the runaway leaders, it certainly didn’t feel that way at the final whistle.’
To Mikel Arteta maybe – he was apoplectic with rage at the officials and anybody else who crossed his path – but the job of a journalist is to be a tad more sober and add some perspective.
‘Failure to score for the first time in the league all season has opened up the door for Manchester City to cut the gap at the top to five points with a win at Chelsea on Thursday evening.’
If you had told Arsenal fans in August that they would be ‘opening up the door for Manchester City to cut the gap at the top to five points with a win at Chelsea on Thursday evening’ in early January, they would have bitten your arm off up to its elbow.
No Partey, no party
Mark Irwin’s Sun colleague Jordan Davies was left to provide the colour and chose to concentrate on Thomas Partey, via some absolute nonsense about Joe Willock because narrative.
‘He was billed as that box-to-box engine room that the Gunners had been missing since Patrick Vieira.’
Was he bollocks.
‘Willock’s move away coincided with the arrival of Thomas Partey in the summer of 2020.’
Nope. Willock left for Newcastle in February 2021. But do carry on. Let’s talk about Partey…
‘This was not Arsenal’s best night of the season against the Toon, anything but.
‘Yet on a night when several of their stars had an off night, Partey stood up.
‘His anticipation for an interception was second to none as he foiled several Newcastle counter attacks through the middle, and was cute when it came to winning fouls.’
Pesky fact: Thomas Partey made one interception against Newcastle.
Another pesky fact: Thomas Partey won one foul against Newcastle.
‘Partey – the club’s new Mr. Reliable – is the man on everyone’s lips right now.’
Hope not. We think you might mean his is the name on everyone’s lips, fella.
Never mind the football…feel the clicks
The Mirror website had already moved on from the pesky football by 10am the next day.
To this top story:
‘Chelsea’s best XI with three January buys as Arsenal’s Mykhaylo Mudryk move ‘hijacked”
Has the Mudryk move been ‘hijacked’? Has it balls. Indeed, a story published within the hour explained that ‘Mykhaylo Mudryk has his heart set on signing for Arsenal, despite interest from Chelsea’.
Or as Fabrizio Romano puts it: ‘Chelsea will only proceed if negotiation with Arsenal collapses. #AFC remain the priority for the player.’
But don’t let that get in the way of a juicy Chelsea XI which we absolutely guarantee will never appear on any pitch.
But the real cream of the day’s click-tastic content is this absolute honking bullsh*t:
‘Liverpool owner John Henry booed by fans as familiar transfer problem rears its head’
Let us fix that for you:
‘John Henry booed by Boston Red Sox fans as familiar transfer problem rears its head’
We presume it was an honest oversight.
The article Frank Lampard ‘tried’ but only spent 50p after the ‘miracle’ of taking Everton from 16th to 16th appeared first on Football365.com.