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A new sign of autumn - 'Mind Games'
19 September 2017 09:14 Post ID: #606344
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The arrival of autumn is heralded by the sight of birds flying south to warmer climes; trees turning terracotta and delivering a carpet of leaves to kick through on long Sunday walks; conkers on the ground evoking memories of childhood games absent from the threat of health and safety bans in schools and spiders deciding that it is time to seek out warmer places to sleep and spin their webs........and cause assorted shrieks in homes throughout the land as they are spotted scurrying across the Living Room floor whilst the family settles down to watch Eastenders or Coronation Street.

But as the nights draw in, the temperatures start to drop and many us are greeted this morning by the first early morning mists of autumn, City fans will have awoken to find that there is a new marker for the advent of this season - the 'mind games' have started.

Five games into the new football season and we find Manchester City and their rivals from Salford, just outside Manchester, sitting atop the Premier League table. Matched for points and goal difference many 'pundits' have begun to lay down their markers and claim that the 'Title Race' will be between these two clubs. Frankly I think it is way too early to be writing off the chances of last season's champions Chelsea and there remains plenty of time for perennial 'title challengers' Liverpool and last season's runners up Tottenham to make up ground. Heck there may even be time for Arsenal to make up ground despite them seemingly being 'adrift' in 12th place.

It is early days and perhaps the need for the pundits to talk up the idea of a Title Race between City and U*d so early is more about the fact that they were denied this clash last season. City consigned their rivals to an unscripted defeat on their home ground early doors last year and with U*d well off the title pace and finishing outside the top four, the media were never really able to gather sufficient energy to justify their long awaited hopes for the 'Clash of the Coaching Titans' they had been salivating over the whole of the previous summer.

And so we find that as couples across the country start to discuss whether it really is cold enough to justify putting on the heating a quick review of the news aggregator NewsNow this morning would reveal that it seems the 'Mind Games' have begun to be deployed. From Maureen's squad appointed acolyte, Ander Herrera, through to the old favourite Sky Pundit, ex-rag and U*d Leg End Gary Neville we find stories abounding with similar themes......

Herrera's line is that City are 'obligated' to win trophies because of their 'unprecedented summer spending' and the fact that his team "...... won three titles last season and City didn’t win anything,” the United midfielder said. “They are under pressure. They are obligated to win titles. We won three last season so they have more obligation than us."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2017/09/18/ander-herrera-manche...

Herrera claim that there is "more pressure on City" somewhat ignores U*d's failure to win a Premier League title since 2013 something which I am sure most rags would regard as a rather major blot on their landscape and which should Maureen fail to rectify in his second season at the club would surely amount to a failure of his own. After all, it's not like they have been light on the spend either......

https://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/statistik/einnahmenausgabenr.

...and where the total market value of his club's squad is not too far behind that of City's.....

https://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/premier-league/startseite/wettbewerb...

Old Favourite Neville, whose reaction to Mané's boot in Ederson's face recently was laughable were it not for the fact that as a broadcaster he had a greater responsibility, has dropped into a standard although rather illogical mantra in claiming that City have "only demonstrated they can dominate the lower teams" ....whilst ignoring his old clubs's fixture list so far which is hardly a list of competitors for the Premier League title (West Ham; Swansea; Leicester City; Stoke and the free-falling Everton).

http://sportslens.com/man-utd-legend-questions-man-city-calls-them-...

It is indeed true that City started last season in a similar blistering fashion only to stumble at the turn of the year but it is somewhat disingenuous to regard their fixture list as being significantly different from his old club's. His disregard for City's title credential is perhaps more visible in his allusion to them being "like Arsenal" which in his mind is an ultimate put down given his long held distaste for all things Gooner-like.

The emergence of these stories just goes to show that as the temperatures drop in the natural world, once the pressure is on in the footballing world, some people revert to type and reel out the same old 'mind games'.

Maureen kept his powder dry in this regard last season. Recently installed at U*d and clearly under a club imposed 'restraining order' which prevented from him gouging the eyes of opposing club coaching staff, walking out of post match press commitments or delivering his more outlandish 'distract from the paucity of my team's play at all costs' stunts. Aware of the limitations of his squad he set about delivering his 'minor trophy holding pattern' whilst he reshaped his playing options and built a position from which he now feels more able to deploy his 'mind games' through surrogates like Herrera supported by accomplices with access to a significant media platform such as Sky.

A freshly emboldened Maureen decided that it was time to launch the 'Mind Game' campaign at the weekend in his post match press conference. After the defeat of Everton he claimed not to care about City's result, stating -

"Today I didn't think one single second about Manchester City," Mourinho told reporters.
"I thought about Tottenham, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool. They lost, or they didn't win their match."

http://www.goal.com/en/news/i-thought-about-totenham-chelsea-liverp...

To believe that he didn't know what he was doing when he made this statement would be the same as claiming the world was flat. This statement was the 'dog whistle' for the mind games to commence and was confirmed by the swift follow up with the 'more pressure on City' claims from a member of his squad, old faithful retainers such as Ray 'Butch' Wilkins being wheeled out to claim the Maureen's squad is better than Guradiola's.......

http://www.dailystar.co.uk/sport/football/645773/Man-Utd-news-squad...

It was only a matter of time. As inevitable as the leaves falling from the trees - we knew it would come. The 'Mind Games' have begun.

Now we have to see how well Pep and City's squad cope with the opening salvo.

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19 September 2017 10:16 Post ID: #606346 - in reply to #606344
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It's beginning to dawn on them that they're not as good as they thought they were.
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19 September 2017 10:43 Post ID: #606347 - in reply to #606344
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19 September 2017 10:49 Post ID: #606348 - in reply to #606347
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Wow! A City fan posted that on Twitter yesterday with his tongue firmly in his cheek and now someone in the Fail makes an article out of it, talk about scraping the bottom of the barrel.
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19 September 2017 12:02 Post ID: #606356 - in reply to #606344
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Desperation stakes. I mean FFS

This could just as easily have been highlighted within the 'Mind Games' thread. Maureen's utterly disingenuous 'dog whistle' comments in his post match press conference have been heeded. That's why the rags followed it up with the planting of Herrera as a Maureen surrogate - his quotes have been picked up ad nauseam and are all across the new feeds, multiplying like flipping Gremlins that fall into a swimming pool.
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19 September 2017 14:24 Post ID: #606363 - in reply to #606344
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Two things - firstly, I find myself agreeing with everything in Skoorbs' piece - apart from his suggestion that Arsenal could find themselves dragged into a title race. Won't happen, they are toast and no pig is capable of that sort of flight (of fancy).

The second is that I really ought to dig out my vinyl copy of mind games. Might even roll out a Camberwell Carrot on it.

Good times!



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19 September 2017 14:35 Post ID: #606364 - in reply to #606344
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You just know it's a sign that he is worried when he starts indulging in this stuff. He was held on a tight leash last season but I think he feels a bit more cocky this time around and is starting to flex his mouth believing perhaps that he is a in a stronger position with his board than he was last season.
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19 September 2017 14:52 Post ID: #606366 - in reply to #606344
Commander in Chief
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It always perplexes why a club that has won as many trophies as they have, has to resort to this nonsense. They have a losers mentality.
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19 September 2017 15:09 Post ID: #606370 - in reply to #606344
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Fundamentally insecure. All bullies are.
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19 September 2017 15:13 Post ID: #606371 - in reply to #606344
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Winners worry about themselves, always give credit to the other squad, and are humble.
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19 September 2017 15:24 Post ID: #606373 - in reply to #606344
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I feel obligated to say that Ander Herrera is a twat.
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19 September 2017 16:12 Post ID: #606377 - in reply to #606373
Chief Forum Editor
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I think you are too kind
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19 September 2017 16:17 Post ID: #606379 - in reply to #606377
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Haha, this is a family friendly forum Buzz.
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19 September 2017 16:25 Post ID: #606380 - in reply to #606373
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Bluedub - 19/9/2017 15:24

I feel obligated to say that Ander Herrera is a twat.
That's why he was selected by Maureen to deliver his message. Hand chosen by the Egotistical One.
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19 September 2017 16:35 Post ID: #606381 - in reply to #606380
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Skoorb - 19/9/2017 16:25

Bluedub - 19/9/2017 15:24

I feel obligated to say that Ander Herrera is a twat.
That's why he was selected by Maureen to deliver his message. Hand chosen by the Egotistical One.


True and he has to get some use from him now that he's not picking him to play.
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19 September 2017 16:39 Post ID: #606383 - in reply to #606344
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