soccernet blog
Manchester United
December 30, 2010
Posted by Mark Payne on 12/30/2010

Most of us are stumbling between turkey sandwiches at this time of year so I am highly impressed that all of the footy players are running around in sub-zero temperatures. Thank goodness Manchester United have Fergie's hairdryer on hand to keep everybody warm.

December 23, 2010
Posted by Mark Payne on 12/23/2010

United are often given a bit of stick for having a large fanbase overseas. This is, of course, an outdated form of tribalism. The people who still live in the same house as their father's and share the old man's socks are the true sad sacks of the 21st Century. Personally, I think it is terrific that we have so many followers abroad and am always cheered to see how welcomed they are at Old Trafford. Besides, this week I'm rather jealous of them as they aren't having to deal with all of this snow.

December 14, 2010
Posted by Mark Payne on 12/14/2010

When you hear words like ‘unbeaten’ or ‘league leaders’ you expect to see some glistening, muscular champion. A paean of strength and excellence, someone or something to be admired and lauded. At the moment you get this rather spotty and knobbly version of Manchester United which tops the division. It includes Michael Carrick.

December 7, 2010
Posted by Mark Payne on 12/07/2010

If money is the disease afflicting football then this was the week when the symptoms seemed to turn terminal. With the World Cup now promised to oil rich nations until my children finish school I now return to club football to get my kicks. FIFA are certainly just a vessel for Sepp Blatter’s powerplays and I wondered on the way to Old Trafford if UEFA were any different.

December 2, 2010
Posted by Mark Payne on 12/02/2010

We've really seen the three faces of Manchester United this week. The imperious, oversized baboon we are in the chimpanzee cage of the Premier League. The cold, methodical scalpel that is Champions League progress and the lacklustre, undermanned side that got walloped by an awful team in front of a half-empty stadium. As December begins, I wonder if these are incantations of Christmas ghosts past, present and a bleak future?