On Tuesday Phil Brown made some comments after a game of football and in doing so has stirred up a right old hornets nest. The press are having a field day. All of their Christmases have come at once. Inch after inch of column space dedicated to this most serious of issues.
Blogworld has also been busy with hundreds of stories, comments, snippets, Trivia and just straight forward meanness. One site even referring to the erstwhile Mr. Brown as Tangoman. I thought I might share a few interesting points.
Phil made some wild claims during his Setanta interview, and then backed them up on radio the next day. So he is serious about this, a good nights sleep hasn't calmed him at all. Extraordinarily he commented on Cesc Fabregas' right to be there at all and his wardrobe. Surely any injured captain will go on to the pitch (at his own club) when his team has just overcome a great hurdle? As for the wardrobe issue, I fail to see what this has to do with anyone, let alone a guest.
Much has been made in the press about a booking Fabregas was given four years ago. It is being routinely reported that he spat at Ballack while he was on the ground, and that he subsequently received a yellow card for it. Ballack has denied that he was spat at. The ref booked him for shouting an obscenity at Ballack.
The YouYube uploader has blatantly mislabeled the video, and when you search his other uploads it all becomes clear. He is a Man Utd Fan, and many of his videos are anti-Arsenal in nature. That the mainstream press would consider this to be a reliable source of information is laughable.
When Hull played Sheffield United in the fifth round tie in this competition, they won because a goal was given when the ball hadn't even crossed the line. So Phil can't complain too much, he got further than he should have and earned more for the club than Sheffield did. It sounds fairly lame then when he complains about how much money the referee has cost Hull City.
Arsene Wenger, according to Phil, made the referee give the goal keeper a yellow card. The card was for time-wasting,which Hull blatantly indulged in once they were up 1-0. Fifteen minutes into the game, reality hit Hull; they had to keep Arsenal out for 75 minutes. No mean feat, so a combination of excessive time-wasting and rotational fouling A-La Sam Allardyce was their tactical approach.
Time-wasting is all too prevalent nowadays, but it is normally limited to the last five or ten minutes of a match and as such is fairly benign. Trying to play a game down after 15 minutes is just plain wrong, its not football. Interesting that the time-wasting vanished once Arsenal had drawn level thanks to Bendtner, Arshavin and Van Persie.
If any good comes from this, then maybe it will be the introduction of the multi-ball system in the Premier League, as used in the Champions League.
I can't understand Phil Brown's Anti-Arsenal stance, sure he got knocked out of the cup, but he beat Arsenal at home and got cheered by our fans at the end of the match earlier in the season. Arsenal also let Hull use their training ground and facilities when they were preparing for their playoff at Wembley last year that promoted them to the premier league.
It seems that Phil's woes are mounting up though, with news today of a £2500 fine for bad behaviour at a third round FA cup tie against Newcastle. Also various news sources have stated that Hull actually received six yellow cards on Tuesday night. The Arsenal website has it at five.
So the potential fallout for Phil is, that if it is six cards because one was awarded after the match or got lost, there will be a £25,000 fine. On top of which he is also looking at further sanctions from the FA for comments he made about the referees succumbing to the pressure of the mighty Arsenal, and further comments when he said that he couldn't say it, but that he had been cheated.
This whole saga takes gamesmanship to another whole level. Phil Brown has to bolster his squad's confidence, and what better way than an overblown attempt to deflect responsibility for the defeat, and to instill a siege mentality at the KC Stadium. It's us against the world, lads...