The View From The Grassy Knoll
Like myself, a lot of Manchester City fans ascribe to the theory that we've had an incredibly rough ride from the referees and the Football Association this season...
Dubious sendings-off, penalties not awarded, players banned for fair tackles - we've had the lot this season.
Meanwhile, in a small town just outside of Manchester, a certain other club have had it easy - stonewall penalties not given, blatant dives from offside players rewarded with a penalty and a red card to the opposition, etc, etc, and so on ad nauseum.
There is a general perception amongst football fans of all persuasions that the referees favour Manchester United over all others, with a handful of referees proving more culpable than most.
In a move that almost beggars belief, two of the most oft criticised referees will officiate two very important games on Sunday, games that could ultimately decide the destination of the premier League title, so as an inveterate conspiracy theorist I'm going to let you have it with both barrels.
I put it to you that:
Alex Ferguson knew that his team had slipped up in dropping points to Wigan and Everton. With this in mind, he knew full well that his team of ageing hackers and callow, over-hyped bargain-buy youngsters stood not a snowball's chance in hell of beating Manchester City at the Etihad, and in order to keep the goal difference down, he parked the bus and played negative football.
Slur Alex was NOT playing for the draw, he was merely trying to keep the score down so that City couldn't rack up a double figure goal difference. And he succeeded, with Vincent Kompany's header being the difference between the two sides.
Now here's where the fun starts. Manchester City, under the watchful eye of Howard 'I may have been looking right at the incident but I didn't see it' Webb travel to the cauldron of Saint James Park (It will never be the Sports Direct!) to face an in-form Newcastle side gunning for a Champions League berth. The club in second place face Swansea at home.
So what will happen in these two vitally important games? The conspiracy theorist in me suggests that both teams ending in City will be a man short come the final whistle, and that at least one team ending in United, (clue: they play in red, refereed by Chris 'Kompany' Foy ) will be awarded a penalty in their hour of need, thus enabling them to win by a cricket score and close the goal deficit.
Please feel free to laugh at me and call me paranoid. Hell, after some of the things I've witnessed this season, I AM PARANOID. But if any of the above predictions come true, at least I'll be able to hold my head high and say 'I told you so', and leave you to mull over just how fair the game in this country actually is.
Click Here to Follow City at Newcastle in The VMC Forum
all times East Manchester
Su 6 May 13:30 Newcastle, St James' Park, PL
Su 13 May 15:00 QPR, The Etihad, PL