Ronaldo poster torn down by Man Utd as England down to ‘just 25 players’ now

Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates scoring for Man Utd. Credit: Alamy
Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates scoring for Man Utd. Credit: Alamy

Man Utd claim to have a reasonable explanation for the Ronaldo poster removal but who believes that? Plus, James Maddison in England scare…


Poster child
As we enter Day Four of Ronaldo, a whole new angle has been uncovered…

‘Man United REMOVE poster featuring Cristiano Ronaldo outside Old Trafford just days after he accused club of ‘BETRAYING’ him… as it’s revealed Erik ten Hag’s squad are ‘tired of him whining about issues with the club’ – MailOnline.

‘Man Utd take first Cristiano Ronaldo action with telling Old Trafford poster removal’ – Express.

What a petty act of revenge for Manchester United to remove a giant poster featuring Ronaldo (and David Beckham, Bryan Robson and Lionesses star Ella Toone) from Old Trafford just days after his interview.

‘United insisted on Wednesday night that the timing was purely coincidental, and they had planned to remove the mural so new branding could be displayed for the Rugby League World Cup finals this weekend.’

A likely story.


I don’t wanna MISS a thing
Welcome to England at the World Cup so welcome to ludicrous panics about players not being fit even though 25 of the 26 players trained on Thursday.

This is the headline on The Sun website:

‘James Maddison MISSES full England training ahead of World Cup 2022 opener as squad work up a sweat in sapping 33C heat’

Well technically James Maddison did not MISS full England training; he left the session early as planned because of ‘load management’, but shall we dispense with being rational and start panicking that he might MISS the Iran game on Monday even though he was probably never going to start anyway?

Here’s the MailOnline, breaking out the CAPS too…

‘James Maddison MISSES England training after going off injured in Leicester’s final game before the World Cup… with the Three Lions’ first game in Qatar against Iran just four days away’

It is ‘just four days away’ but he only MISSED part of the session and that was planned. He said himself on Wednesday that there had been a “positive scan”. Stand the f*** down.


Scare tactics
The Daily Express website are not wasting a good injury scare when they see one, and what’s more frightening than a one-cap England player missing part of a training session to leave England down to the 25-man bare bones ahead of a clash with Iran?

‘England boss Gareth Southgate loses World Cup man as only 25 players train on day two’

‘Loses World Cup man’. For one training session. To leave ‘only’ 25 players. Shall we just come home now?

‘England manager Gareth Southgate will still hold some World Cup injury concerns after James Maddison left training early on Thursday.’

Will he? Or will he think that Maddison left training early as planned? Probably the latter.

‘Maddison’s absence will worry supporters after he suggested he was fit on the back of an injury scare in Leicester City’s win at West Ham United last weekend.’

Well it will if you have anything to do with it. But most will agree that ‘load management’ sounds sensible.

But they’re not done there. It’s now officially an ‘England scare’ and it’s LIVE. Which is the worst kind of ‘England scare’.

‘World Cup LIVE: James Maddison leaves training early with ‘knee problem’ in England scare’

Or, alternatively, ‘James Maddison made a premature exit from England’s training session in Qatar today in order to manage his fitness ahead of Monday’s group stage opener against Iran’.

But yes, let’s go for ‘England scare’. Remember they have ‘only 25 players’ now. Is that even enough for a full team?


James Maddison played darts against a member of the media on Wednesday and that really has made everybody very giddy indeed…

James Maddison plays DARTS at World Cup 2022 press conference as recalled England ace recreates iconic celebration’

That’s The Sun. Love the capitals. As if he wasn’t supposed to play DARTS but was just too wacky to help himself. What a card!

And as for the ‘iconic celebration’…we’re sure we all remember the first time we saw Leicester City footballer Maddison pretend to throw a dart while celebrating a goal. It’s basically like the dentist’s chair and Roger Milla’s corner flag rolled into one.

‘James Maddison brings his darts to Qatar! Can he get England off to a winning start?’

That’s Sky Sports getting very giddy indeed about a man who likes darts taking his darts to a place where he will have lots of time to play darts.

And then there’s the back page of the Daily Mirror

…on which ‘darts fan’ Maddison ‘insists’ that England’s World Cup team think they can win the World Cup. Mediawatch will never stop shaking its head at footballers ‘insisting’ that they can win football matches. Sometimes they just ‘say’ things. Between throwing darts. Sorry, DARTS.


You bet!
You know when a footballer makes the front page of The Sun that they must have a) done something terrible or b) draped themselves in a flag before a big game. For Ivan Toney on Thursday it was unfortunately a)…

But ‘dropped from World Cup’? Nope. Not true. He was not picked for the England World Cup squad and remains uncapped by England.

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