Premier League pride has turned to shame over the past week or so, with three of the representatives from ‘The Greatest League In The World’ tumbling out of the Champions League at the round-of-16 stage.
Only Manchester City and Liverpool have made it through to the last eight and hopes that a major English resurgence in Europe was on its way have crumbled away to dust.
Time to take a forensic, brutally honest look at the Premier League, with special focus on its representatives in the Champions League…
Although the domestic title has been in the bag since the middle of autumn, it’s still impossible to really judge how good City are. Some fans are notoriously apathetic about being involved in the Champions League, although that might change if they found themselves in the final by the end of the season.
Are Pep’s lads REALLY as good as their league standing suggests? A home defeat against Basel last week hints that they’ll need to find another gear or two if they’re going to bring the cup home to England for only its fifth time in its 25-year history. By contrast, it’s ended up in Spain for the past four seasons…
Right now, United are in that post-knockout inquest phase that is more familiar to English fans than an actual trophy win. The blame lies solely with Jose Mourinho, and his reaction seems to be to suggest that he needs even more money to spend in the summer.
That right there is the problem that the Premier League has. Using hard cash as a sticking plaster when problems arise, just thrown up after eating 15 jam doughnuts? Why not have some more jam doughnuts – that should make it all better!
Aside from a Chelsea Premier League win (not forgetting my point that the Premier League is a vastly overrated competition), what has Mourinho actually done of note in recent years when you factor in his previous record and the obscene amount of funding he’s had access to for team-construction?
For everyone who is lucky to have a career moment in the sun, eventually that sun will pass over them. It’s happened to Arsene Wenger and it’s now happening to Jose Mourinho. But, his sheer force of personality will keep him in high-profile, well-paid, underwhelming work for a few years yet.
If you’d said Klopp’s team could be genuine favourites for the Champions League at the end of the season after their 4-1 thrashing by Spurs at Wembley in October, I’d have asked you who your dealer was.
But they’ve lost just twice in the Premier League since then and ended Manchester City’s unbeaten run with a (mostly) impressive performance in January. The fact that Manchester United fans devoted so much energy to crowing about their win over Liverpool last weekend was telling – they’re looking behind them not in front of them and they see Liverpool as a genuine threat.
We need to stop indulging Spurs and their team of nearly-men. They almost won the league a couple of seasons ago but were beaten by LEICESTER, and an actual trophy still eludes this talented but flawed team.
They were taught a lesson by Juventus and their Premier League challenge this season has never got started. Nice to watch sometimes, but look closer and there’s not much of substance.
Is there anyone in a position of power at Chelsea who actually cares about them? They received plaudits for trying to attack Barcelona last night, but the hard fact is that they lost 3-0. It’s like a school sports day where all the kids get a medal because they ‘all tried their best’.
The manager doesn’t want to be there and the owner seems to be bored with it all – how do you expect them to be taken seriously either domestically or on the continent? A joke of a club at the moment.