Thursday, 16 October 2008

The Tevez Saga and News Catch Up

The one genuine talking point that has been brewing over the last couple of weeks has been the Tevez situation. I wrote a detailed article on this subject at Red Rants, which I suggest you go and read, but in a nutshell decision time is fast approaching as to whether United want to make Tevez's loan deal permanent for a cost totalling above £30m.

Since my article, reports have emerged that the asking price is non-negotiable - on top of the money United have already paid towards the loan deal, Tevez will cost us a further £25m to keep.

Today, the plot has thickened further, with the following two stories:

- Tevez himself has come forward to say that he has lost his goal-scoring threat recently, but that he is determined to get it back again. This is both an acceptance and a vindication of Fergie's decision to place Rooney above Tevez in the pecking order for partnering Berbatov, and brings the question of whether or not he is worth £30m in total into even sharper focus.

- Real fucking Madrid (of whom more below) have stuck their oar in, via their rag Marca, saying that if United don't secure Tevez on a permanent basis by 30 January, they will step in and buy him from the sports company MSI (who "owns" him at present). It is impossible to tell whether they have done this to wind United and Fergie up or whether they are serious, but in either case, can someone please get them to shut the fuck up? Oh no, of course not - that would mean Sepp Blatter doing something useful for once in his life.

No doubt this has further to run, so watch this space.

If you've been hibernating during the international break, here is what you need to know to get up to speed with United news:

Wayne Rooney has an absolutely stellar pair of games for England, scoring four (yes, count them) and making another. Rio skippers the England side twice, and shows an increasingly assured touch and likeable face with the media - still baffles me why EBJT was chosen - and chips in with a goal. Brown is fairly solid in defence and contributes an assist for one of Rooney's goals.

United (via newly employed scout and former legend Jaap Stam) have been tracking the latest Brazilian wunderkind, Douglas - whose agent claims United are prepared to pay £20m for him.

As Real fucking Madrid start chattering again about signing Ronaldo next summer, our favourite winger says he's feeling the love from United fans. Can someone please make them shut the f....etc.

Despite not knowing his place in the pecking order for right back, Wes Brown makes a pitch for the utility man role by claiming he'd be happy to fill in in the centre.

United's injury crisis promises to be a distant memory as Michael Carrick, Owen Hargreaves, Ben Foster and Tomasz Kusczcak all return to fitness.

United are linked with Valencia and Palacios, both currently playing for Steve Bruce at Wigan, with extraordinary sums like £19m each being touted about. Cabin fever at the red tops, I reckon.

That's all for today. What do you make of the Tevez situation - do you want him to stay or go, and is he worth that type of money? What about the other goings on?

Also, a (fictitious) prize for the person who can come up with the most creative Real Madrid insult!


Thanks for the increased activity in the comments box yesterday - please, same again and more today, I want double figures! For those that missed my impassioned plea, here it is again:

I know there are a lot of you out there reading this blog - my nice little site stats box tells me that. Please do come and contribute in the comments - even a three-worder makes me feel like it has been worth the effort.

Also, don't be afraid to contradict me or even go off on a tangent - ultimately, why I and others make and read blogs like this is because we enjoy discussing United and football. So start discussing!


Anonymous said...

I think we should sign Tevez but I believe that the delay is due to his current price and possibly his current status in the team. Personally I would like to think that £15m would be enough to get him(which added to the £10m we would have paid to have him on loan makes the MSI group a cool £25m). Regarding Real 'we just want attention' Madrid's supposed interest, I think that because they want a new striker they are going to be linked with everyone. The fact that a United player is again linked to them just helps sell their club 'news'paper and (they would like to think)gets to us fans a little.

As a side note, despite signing Berbatov and potentially signing Tevez, we continue to be linked with several strikers. Do you think that we would be likely to purchase another striker next season(a player of Benzema's calibre perhaps) or would we allow our own youngsters like Campbell,Welbeck, Brandy etc have a chance. Let's not forget Manucho-who hopefully will not just become another Dong type player!

Penguinissimo said...

I'd be amazed to see us sign another top quality striker - there just ain't room on the teamsheet, and that's even if we let Tevez go.

I would like to see us nurture our younger players through, but how plausible that is is hard to determine. Hopefully we'll put together an extended Carling and FA Cup run to let us see more of these guys, and hopefully Campbell continues his solid start at Spurs.

If we were going to sign another striker, I think they would fall into one of two categories:

- promising but raw, as per Ando and Nani when we signed them, who accept they will be squad players whilst they learn their trade; or

- a striker from a lower "band" who is happy to be a squad player, of the calibre of say Defoe or Crouch. Smithy did that job well for us before Fergie tried to turn him into a midfielder - not stellar, but did a good job for us when needed.

Vishnu said...

i did read your report over at redrants..felt it was a bit...say cruel to the importance of tevez to our team.
i fully understand the importance of the price quoted in the tabloids..but still i'd love to see the three of our "main" strikers rotated..because playing 60 odd games with two main strikers and one coming off the bench wont work in my honest opinion

next the theme over at the redrants seemed a bit like tevez was a second rated rooney. I unfortunately dont agree. To me tevez is as good as rooney fullstop. Hopefully when the time comes when we rotate (trust me we will-at least the forward line) we'd see more of tevez-berba partnership improving and flourishing as much as a roovez or a berba-roon partnership

like to end this long post by saying WE FOOTBALL FANS ARE FICKLE AS S*** just a month or two ago when tevez was in prime hot form people were calling for rooney's head now its vice versa

Penguinissimo said...

Vishnu - thanks for your comments.

I can see how you could read my RR column as a bit cruel, but I prefer the term "cold-eyed", which I used in that article. "Objective" might be even better.

I tried to draw out the distinctions between Tevez and Rooney, and why I don't necessarily think Tevez is worse than Rooney, just a worse fit with Berbatov. But in the long run, if you offered me one or the other, I'd take Rooney every time, and I've always said that.

Tevez was important to our team last season, but I'm not sure if he's as important to our team this year - and it is an eye-watering price tag for someone who isn't an automatic pick.

I still hope for the Fab Four dream team of Berba, Tevez, Rooney and Ronaldo to click - to see those four working in tandem could be stunning. And if that does work, then great - hand over the money.

Anonymous said...

I just don't see them re-signing Tevez.

Berba is in and will start, that is clear as we just signed and for him with starting money.

Now either Tevez or Rooney will be paired up with Berba and in my opinion, Rooney is a better fit with Berba as he is a better player distributing the ball than Tevez and can drop back and help at midfield better than Tevez can.

Now, if I were the skipper, I would have never signed Berba. Tevez and Rooney is our best pair in my eyes. They have the counter attacking type of play that we excel at. With Ronaldo, Tevez, Rooney and the likes of Nani and Anderson emerging, the options and creativity are endless.

Berba fitted the need for Sir Alex as a pure finisher but I just don't like how he fits in with the nature of our attacking style.

This also creates probably the biggest problem of having 3 starters up front. One or even all 3 will not be happy splitting time as all of them know they could be a fulltime starter instead of a rotational player.

We need a Saha without the injuries. Someone who is willing to come in an be that striker who comes of the bench. And Berba/Roon/Tevez is not that.

Red Knight said...

Another excellent post! I am a huge Tevez fan, for a player to have such abilty coupled with an outstanding workrate is a rare phemonomen. we are with two! Although the money being touted around is astronomical, would we be better buying him a proven player, a fan favorite already, and someone who will work their ass off for the team, or someone who might cost half the price and be happy to play a game every five?

Theres enough games in the season to justify buying Tevez. If Rooney's form didn't pick up there would still be calls for him to be starting. With injurys, suspensions and dips in form it would be silly to let a player of his calibre go! Espeically with the fact of the matter being, if he leaves Old Trafford he will be going to one of our European Rivals!

Devilinho said...

about tevez saga i think real fuckin madrid are just trying to test united weather they are realy can afford paying over the odds for tevez and keep ronaldo..

they think if we got intimidated by their interest in tevez we'll buy him whatever the price then they can comfortablly make a bid for ronaldo and for sure we'll accept it whatever it is to compensate what we've paid for both tevez and berba because we'll be desperate for money!!

on the other hand if we dont buy tevez they will and they'll get a striker..

i hope we buy tevez not for £30.. and in total less than £25.. and with the players we have i'm not desperate to have him however he was so important for us..

about palacios and valencia i'm not sure we need palacios our midfield is fantastic specially we'll have carrick and hargo soon and hopefully scholes and rodrigo..

so i think why won't we sell nani to madrid and hopefully not less than £20 and buy valencia to fill giggs place in the flanks..

and of course keeping ronaldo.. he will appreciate what we've done for him by the time and will be a legend..

PO13 said...

A situation like this make me long for the days of Ole. He really was the key to Fergie's striker rotation policy from 1999-2001. Cole and Yorke were basically first choice, and Sheringham was a bit older and perhaps content with being at a club at United (although he had a tremendous solo campaign a few years later). Ole was not an older veteran, and had arguably just as much skill as Cole and Yorke. Yet his ability to adapt to his role and not be wooed by other clubs made him invaluable to us. A player like that is needed for a rotation.

I saw the writing on the wall for Tevez when he had a great pre-season only to be benched in favor of Rooney after an ineffective performance with Berbatov against Bolton. Yes Rooney was being "rotated" and you could argue that Tevez was as well against Chelsea. But after that match Rooney retained his place in the first 11, while Tevez sat. The purchase of Berbatov may have spelled the end of Tevez in the team. Fergie won't sit Berbatov for now, and he prefers Rooney in the second role over Tevez. Big players don't want to sit and be impact subs usually, and although I like Tevez, I don't see him pulling an Ole and be content with a sub/spot-start role in the team. If we sell Ronaldo next summer, perhaps Tevez could see an expanded role, but that's the only way I see him being signed. If we don't plan to sell Ronaldo, I don't see Tevez coming back at that inflated price.

In conclusion, I believe Tevez would have grown tired of being the second choice in the rotation and would have considered a move elsewhere. This would have happened regardless of price to keep him, and the inflated price tag only makes him more likily to go. Would Fergie have paid 25 million to keep Ole?

Wink said...

I reckon we WILL sign tevez because Man Utd seem the type to do right by their people... and tevez has done right by United.

i mean it seems that it may be expensive, but all that is arbitrary as Tevez may help us win the EPL, CL and FA cup which would grant in the excess of 100mil in revenue wouldnt it?
my figures are shit, i know, just trying to make a point...

and that is that i THINK we will end up signing Tevez, no need to stress over it

btw, penguin, i really enjoy your articles. very articulate and relatable

Keeptheolemould said...

Tevez has been very quick to distance himself from the stories about his performance this morning; and I certainly wouldn’t believe anything in the Marca; so the only serious question is should we pay c£25-28m to keep him beyond this season?

Without doubt, last year he scored some great, important goals for us. His work rate was immense, he had tenacity galore and he showed that he and Rooney can work together. But last year we didn’t have Berb or Manucho, Fraizer was still a teenager and Saha was missing most of the time. By next season, the two new boys should have settled in, Campbell would be back from loan and looking for an Ingerland place alongside Wayne and the likes of Brandy, Welbeck and Federico would be coming of age. The timing suggests that Carlos was never more than a two-year stopgap.

Yet both SAF and Gill have said Tevez will be offered a contract before the end of the year, so what haven’t they told us? Well, they haven’t told us how much they are willing to pay and they haven’t told us if some shady deal was done with Ronaldo last summer.

If Tevez is signed for Christmas I would suggest that either one of the new boys hasn’t come up to scratch or the Man from Madeira is on the march. Sorry Carlos, but if they are the only scenarios which keep you here than I would prefer to wave a “thanks and goodbye” come next May.

MoYa said...

You forgot to mention United giving a trial to Adam Ljajic (AKA "Little Kaka").
It's interesting how football has evolved into a race to sign the best talent at an ever decreasing age... The younger the better type of thing.
Hmmm... Perhaps you could write an article on that!

MoYa said...

Galactic Hoes!!!

Penguinissimo said...

Anon - I see your point, but I was always in favour of buying Berba - I think he gives us a different dimension, and that's important up front.

Red Knight - I agree with your glowing assessment of Tevez, I just cannot quite get past the price tag. Maybe I should calm down and assume that we can afford that sum in the long run...but I'd need assurances that the strikers were happy in a rotation system.

Devilinho - I approve of your RFM (Real fucking Madrid) conspiracy theories!

po13 - as you say, we sometimes forget how spoiled we were to have a player of Ole's quality who was prepared to sit on the bench for extended periods. But as you say, for all that we loved him, I can't see that we ever valued him at £25m - and this for a player who usually scored over 15 goals a season from the bench.

wink - I think you're right, that we will stick to our word and sign him, even though I'm not sure that's the right thing to do.

Moya - that news came up after I wrote the post, but I will comment on it and the general trend in another article - thanks for the suggestion. Oh, and love the RFM insult!!

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