Monday, November 03, 2008



Rafa The Rotator

What is the difference between resting and rotating?
Why is it that when Benitez makes 4 changes for a midweek game against Portsmouth, he is tinkering or rotating, and breaking up a winning side; yet when Alex Ferguson makes 5 changes to his side for a midweek game against West Ham, he is giving players a much needed rest and giving others an opportunity? Both sides picked up 3 points, yet Rafa's side currently sits top of the table and 8 points clear of Ferguson's. Yet it is the press rolling out their tired old typecast about him rotating as soon as he makes more than one change to his side. It's lazy, and it's annoying.Over the past two seasons, Rafa Benitez has "rotated" approximately the same number of times as Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho, Avram Grant and Arsene Wenger; yet he is the only one that has landed himself with this tag as a rotator.

Why?Wayne Rooney and Ronaldo were "rested" or "rotated" in more league games than Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard last season, and United had an appalling record when those two, or one of them, were missing from the side. Yet it never gets a mention. Mainly because they won the league; but even throughout the season, when the title was far from decided, there was still no criticism of the policy of resting those players. Yet Benitez leaves Torres on the bench for one game and he is hung out to dry by the nations hacks.This season we've beaten Man United at home without Gerrard or Torres in the side (Gerrard coming on for the final few minutes), and now beaten Chelsea away without Fernando Torres. We currently sit 3 points clear at the top of the league, unbeaten, and having picked up 26 points from a possible 30. We're also cruising through the Champions League group stages. Yet as soon as the manager makes more than 2 changes to his side, the knives are out. Win the game or not, it's guaranteed to make the headlines the following morning. The red top journalists never let you down on that front, lazy is being polite in describing their work.We have an away game in London on Saturday afternoon, and an important European fixture a few days later, so the manager decided to keep Mascherano, Agger, Riera and Keane a little fresher for those games by letting them sit out the win over Portsmouth. Putting out a side more than capable of beating a Portsmouth side that are far from the greatest travellers.

Keane and Riera were carrying little knocks, Mascherano has been travelling back and forth to Argentina for the International fixtures, while Agger has not played football for almost 12 months. Surely that is resting rather than rotating?I thought maybe the "rotator" name tag would all but disappear if we were winning, only being reeled out after a defeat. It seems I was wrong. Isn't it strange how you never hear much of the infamous "zonal marking" system anymore? We have one of the best defensive records in the country, yet as soon as we concede one goal from a set play, then out come the Richard Keyes and Andy Gray's of this world to criticise zonal marking, without addressing the fact that it is this zonal marking system that has helped create one of the best defences in the country.

Take them blinkers off gentlemen and actually think about what you're saying.It's as if the nation's media and press have a few basic rules to follow for each club. For Liverpool they always refer back to Gerrard not being played in the middle, despite having his two best seasons wide right and behind the front man. The next one is the zonal marking each time we concede from a corner, and the rotation policy costing us all chance of a league title challenge; forgetting the fact that other sides at the top also rotate, but have just been doing so with superior players than ourselves. Is it too much to ask for journalists to actually think about what they're putting into print and feeding to the nation? The readers that believe all this nonsense are as lazy as they are.If we beat Tottenham on Saturday and Athletico Madrid in the week, will it have been a good decision to rest those players against Portsmouth and hold back bringing Torres into the side? Or will have just been tinkering and rotating for the sake of it and risking costing us the title challenge we all crave?

Time will tell in the end, but at least try and look at the resting / rotating argument in the bigger picture; not just sticking to the faithful "Rafa the Rotator" agenda because you can't be bothered to think about it for yourself.Now let's hope that horrible zonal marking doesn't rear it's head again if we dare to concede at the weekend! You'd think teams that man marked never conceded wouldn't you

sent in by MR Gani

I really enjoyed this article on and as its my blog its fitting

Azee, I want to see what you and the readers say about DEL

Calcio Debate: Del Piero + Rest = The Best
Alessandro Del Piero was the mastermind behind Juventus’ 2-0 win over Roma on Saturday night. Carlo Garganese believes that if the Golden Boy is afforded regular rest, he will continue to shine this season…

Alex Del Piero turns 34 this Sunday, but if you witnessed his magical display against Roma on Saturday night, you would be forgiven for thinking he was about to celebrate his 24th birthday. A world-class free kick, an assist, not to mention some inspired moments of skill, Del Piero will no doubt make it into’s Team of the Week for Round 10.The Italy international has been written off so many times over the past few years, only to prove his critics wrong, that no one dares to question him any longer. These same doubters remained silent when, with the exception of the Real Madrid game, Del Piero endured a rather under-par start to the current campaign.During Juventus’ crisis period a few weeks back, when they went five games without a win, and lost successive matches to Palermo and Napoli, Del Piero really did look like an ageing player.However, there is a simple reason why the forward wasn’t up to scratch during this period – he was being overplayed by coach Claudio Ranieri. Del Piero started seven straight games for Juve in just over a month, sometimes playing as many as three of these in the space of seven days.Now this volume of matches would test even the greatest of athletes, but for a 33-year-old, who is hardly renowned for his stamina and Javier Zanetti-like staying power, it comes as no surprise that his form dropped a touch.The reason why Del Piero was so devastating against Roma was because he had been rested against Bologna in midweek, and had thus had seven days to recover since the derby win over Torino.Ask yourself why Del Piero was such a revelation last season, finishing as top-scorer in Serie A. The answer is simple. Juventus were not participating in the Champions League, meaning that Del Piero was as fit as a fiddle, only taking to the field once a week.Del Piero does not have the body and the physical capacity to regularly play every three days. However, afforded regular rest, and he is a huge asset, and still the symbol of this Juventus team.What are your views on this topic? Is Del Piero at his best when he plays once a week? Does he have the stamina to feature every three days? Should Ranieri be careful in how he uses the Golden Boy? wants to know what YOU think…Carlo Garganese

Calcio Comedy: Adriano Sacked For Mourinho Phone Prank
Brazilian striker Adriano has sensationally been sacked by Inter Milan as punishment for leaving a number of rude messages on coach Jose Mourinho’s answer phone…

Please note that this story is satirical…Adriano has had a miserable past few years both on-and-off the pitch, but he had appeared to be getting his life and career back on track since returning from a loan spell at Sao Paulo in the summer.L’Imperatore started the new European season promisingly, scoring three goals in all competitions. However, he then reverted to his old bad habits by clubbing with Ronaldinho until the early hours of Monday morning. This infuriated Inter coach Jose Mourinho, who dropped Adriano from his squad to play Fiorentina in midweek when the striker also turned up late for training on Tuesday. There were widespread reports in the media that the pair’s relationship was beyond repair and that Adriano could be offloaded in January.It now appears that the 26-year-old has indeed played his last ever game for the club as Inter sensationally released a statement this morning saying that they have sacked Adriano for gross misconduct.The statement read: “Internazionale would like to announce that they have parted company with Adriano Leite Ribeiro following a most unfortunate incident involving him and Jose Mourinho. We have no more to add on this matter at this time.”This ‘most unfortunate incident’ occurred in the early hours of this morning when Adriano recorded a number of vulgar messages on Mourinho’s answer phone.The Brazilian had been out partying in the fashion capital, and he was lucky enough to pick up a fine-looking ragazza named Gabriela. The pair retired to the footballer’s luxurious Hilton Milan hotel room at Via Luigi Galvani, and Adriano prepared himself for a return to action.However, Gabriela was proving to be a tough defender to crack, and she demanded that Adriano do something to impress her. The Brazilian juggled with an orange, performed one-armed press-ups, and showed off his latest barbed-wire tattoo, but still the young lady wasn’t stirred. It was then that Gabriela suggested that Adriano ring up Mourinho, and tell the Portuguese that he loved him.“I can’t do that,” said a stunned Adriano. “I would get the sack.”“Come on Adri,” Gabriela replied, while stroking her hair suggestively. “If you like me, you will do it.”This was enough to convince the easily-led Adriano, who immediately dialled Mourinho’s mobile number from the bed-side telephone. The call went straight through to the coach’s answer phone, Adriano waited for the beep, before bellowing out the famous Stevie Wonder song…“I just called to say I love you. I just called to say how much I care. I just called to say I love you. And I mean it from the bottom of my heart.”To this, Gabriela remarked: “That was funny, but you have to do more than that to impress me. Ring him back and say that he is a rubbish coach, and that unless he plays you against Reggina you are going to beat him up.”Adriano once again obliged, and so he rung Mourinho for a second time.“Hey, punk,” he slurred.“Ignore the first call. I don’t really love you. Do you know who I am? I am ‘The Emperor’! Now listen very carefully, either you play me on Saturday, or I am going to wipe that smug grin off your face." “Much, much better,” Gabriella grinned.“However, your mission is not yet complete. Ring him up one more time, and invite him round to our hotel room.”Adriano this time flatly refused, citing that he was probably already in enough trouble. The feisty Gabriela wouldn’t take no for an answer though. She grabbed the phone, hit the redial button before whispering, “Jose, you won’t know who this is. My name is Gabriela, but you can call me what you like.“Come up to my hotel room on Via Luigi Galvani 12. Room 433, just like your favourite formation. I’m waiting for you to give me a ‘Special One’.”Mourinho discovered all these messages on his answer phone this morning, and immediately notified President Massimo Moratti, who wasted no time in tearing up Adriano’s contract.The player himself has yet to comment on the matter, and indeed it is possible that he is still unaware that he has been sacked. Adriano failed to show up to training, his mobile phone is switched off, while the ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign is still up on the outside of his hotel room.Journalists have managed to obtain the full identity of the girl who accompanied him during this distasteful act. Her full name is Gabriela Galliani, a 21-year-old student, who is studying to become an actress at the University of Milan. It is not yet known if she is related to AC Milan topdog Adriano Galliani, although the transfer guru, who persuaded Ronaldinho to take his compatriot clubbing in order to anger Mourinho, has in the last few hours admitted that he would “welcome Adriano at Milanello with open arms, should he wish to join”.

I had dream last nite of Don Corleoni telling me "Remember Bhai Gora , When you used to come to Naples and have my Mamas pasta it was always about honour and respect within the Italian Family. On Sunday Italian pride was mocked.
I agree vit my Don. Vat the F#4k vas Glock thinking. Its not on. It vas theft. He needs to be shot. Hamilton for driving past Glock is the MUGG of da Veek. He even bigger Mugg den Glock. If another man meet supermodel and he vork hard whole evening, he buy the drinks, Den later he see me in passage and he say Bhai Gora come, never mind you klap it......I say it not my Kill. I cant
Im so pi@##ed I dont vant top elaborate. F#4KIN sHOCKING. Only vay die Breetish can vin.

Can someone please tell me if Hashim Amla was man of the match on Sunday. I heard he was. Then on Monday Iogged on to supersport and all I read was Kallis, Kallis. So I got confused. There was one line about Amla.

Brilliant knock by Hash. So was Hash MAN OF THE MATCH?
A must see. I cant embed this video because it has been disabled...
But watch it ..Purely Class
Sent in by Moosa A.


  1. the question remains is DEL better then DOC 16V KHUMALO?

    If u rotate and win then its all fine but if u rotate and end the season without a trophy then u will be slated! the other thing is that ferguson mourinho etc dont fuck around with the back 4 too much. guys like carvalho, terry cole, vidic, rio, evra, brown played most of the games last season. rafa on the other hand had a different left back and right back every game. risse played half the time as a left half and other times at left back. finnan aurellio dosena etc play at different times. also key guys like lampard play most games!

    another point is when u rotate the so called 2nd stringers must be of quality, when rooney dont play tevez is quality, when ronaldo dont play nani is quality when scholes or carrick dont play hargreaves and anderson are quality, same with chelsea, if drog not playing, anelka is quality, same with obi mikel kalou malouda etc. they 2nd stringers are quality. with the scousers, pennant, lucas leva, kewell etc were not up to standard. and so rafa was rightly slated!

    if the adriano story is true, the lad is a legend!

  2. How can you have rotation when you have a guy like a Penant on the Bench

  3. go you good thing hamilton go!

    we have the 1st formula one champ of colour, and in a few hours we will have the 1st usa preisdent of colour!

    go u good thing obama go! obama u beauty! its time, vote 4 change!

  4. a new question,

    is rafa better then graham souness?

    shit is rafa better the mike phelan?

  5. the difference is when Rafa rotates it all fuks up but when when Fergie rotates it all goes smoove...

    Fergie learnt the art of rotation whereas Rafa needs to learn from the best

    Down with the Livertwats

  6. rafa will fuck it up! never been impressed with him. yeh he won us the champs league but apart from that he has not delivered. get the impression he does not research and scout properly before he buys. always moaning about lack of funds but he has to shelter some of the blame with bad buys. his handling of crouch was also bad. who buys kak like deggen and doesna and lucas leva and pennant. we need change!

  7. At least Benites is not rotating like he did last year.

    But Why he didnt play Crouch last year. Just cant understand

  8. Adriano confronts the Special one. Now that is something.

  9. Adriano confronts the Special one. Now that is something.

  10. Del Piero just gets better with age. He may not have been great at International level but in European Competition he is a Legend. And he posseses exceptional skill


  11. Ja, hamilton the mugg winning, obama da puppet going to win and the birth of the black springbok-hehe whata black weekend!!! But one thing's for sure no livertwat won and still no livertwat going to win!!!!!!!

  12. Swoosh

    Del is sublime for his age.Couldn't understand why they didnt play him in the Euros.(atleast he got very little)

    On Rafa

    I cant understand why the man plays Dosena?( What does Rafa see in him?)

    A mistake was takin off Keane this weekend not that Penant is shit but Keane was obviously having the better game!

    Rafa is worse than Souness!

  13. hey swoosh remember ronald regan?
    what about jfk? bush senior? richard nixon? abraham lincoln, geoge washington? rooseveldt?

    marty mcfly
    "back to the future"

  14. del is kak!yeh he got skill but overall he has under achieved! let italy dowm too many times!

  15. Marty

    How about Malcom X,Boris Yeltsin,Hitler,H F Verwoed?



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