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1
What might have been....Probably teh best striker in the world right now.

At 31, Lewandowski is probably unlikely to catch either Messi or Ronaldo but his goalscoring statistics, particularly at an age when some players are past their best, are hugely impressive. But Lewandowski's career could have taken a very different trajectory if not for a volcano preventing him from joining Blackburn from Polish side Lech Poznanback in April 2010. The eruption of an Icelandic volcano nine years ago and the ash cloud that it created resulted in his flight to England's north-west being cancelled. "I couldn't go because of the cloud. It was the volcano. The volcano with the ash cloud," Lewandowski, who eventually signed for Borussia Dortmund in June 2010, told the Times.

"It was one week and nobody could fly in Europe. The flight was booked, but we couldn't leave. It changed my life. If I had gone to Blackburn maybe I would have stayed there."

2
General discussion / Re: The OFFICIAL Liverpool FC thread
« on: October 21, 2019, 07:51:34 AM »
Decent point given how Liverpool played. On paper that was in the top 3-4 hardest games all year and it is a sign of how far Liverpool have come that its disappointing only to take a point from OT when they play poorly. United are nowhere near as bad as is being made out and I expect them to rise up the table pretty quickly.

There is a lack of creativity in midfield when teams sit back against Liverpool and try to play on the break. Keita/Ox may give more attacking options and will get into the box more but they are less defensively minded. On the VAR no issue obviously with the Mane one, thats they way the rules are so fair enough. I On the MU goal I cannot see why the onfield ref doesn't check that himself. It was borderline and I can see why a ref in a studio does not want to overrule but how much longer would it take to go to the side of the pitch and review. There was much more blatant decisons on Saturday not overruled. Having seen VAR in action this year I actually think  it should be limited to factual checks e.g. offside rather than anything that has a level of subjectivity.

3
General discussion / Re: Man Utd Thread:
« on: October 18, 2019, 09:46:42 AM »



I think there was a bit of negativity regarding him alright. And there can be for these types of players who may look limited in footballing ability but are absolutely vital for teams to maintain the high tempo that Liverpool play to and the pressing game. Lucas was another one that got horrendous abuse early in his career but proved himself over time. It can be the Match of the day effect. Henderson will rarely look great on MotD as he rarely does the spectacular and doesn't get much air time in the highlights. But he works his arse of and anyone watching the full game will generally see what he brings to the table.

Thats a lot to do with it for the "armchair" supporter. I watch most Liverpool games right through and appreciate the work Henderson does but as you say, not much ends up on MoTD. Pogba is the polar opposite in my view. On the highlights he will have 2 or three brilliant moments or pieces of skill and looks good for Linekar & Co but for 95% of the game he is anonymous, uninterested or not involved.

There is a place for both types of players in certain teams/matches but Liverpool's system needs the workhorses in midfield. The likes of Pogba would seriously unbalance it. I think its one of the reasons Liverpool were happy to sanction the Couthinho sale when it was obvious he wanted to go. People attribute the improvement in Liverpool defensively to VVD arriving and clearly that has been teh primary reason. However, I think Couthinho's departure also had an impact. By his leaving it automatically means that one of the regular starters is now replaced by a more defensively minded player (whether its Hendo, Gini, or by default that the front three is now fixed rather than 3 from 4.

4
General discussion / Re: The OFFICIAL Liverpool FC thread
« on: October 16, 2019, 12:12:09 PM »
Big difference under Klopp is teh quality of the signing. He was backed at the higher end of the spectrum. You get the feeling Brodge went for quantity rather than quality.

Summer 13 makes grim reading....and then look what happened!

5
General discussion / Re: Ireland’s drugs epidemic
« on: October 09, 2019, 10:28:09 AM »
Reality is individual clubs can take a stand against this by removing those who they know are involved in drug use from their teams and strip them of club membership. It has absolutely zero place in our communities or our association.
To be honest thats an absolute non runner. Impossible to police and unfair to expect club members to police it. Its not like fellas be landing down to the club off their nut. How would you go about it? "Johnny I hear you were doing a few lines at a party at the weekend, dont come back through those gates". Hes likely to tell you to go fcuk yourself.

And rightly so. There is a major issue with this but as you say its unfair to ask clubmen to police it. Where does it stop? Do you strip membership off the player who gets in a car after 3 pints? If it was down to me I would have much less issue with a lad who takes a line of coke every now and again and doesnt really harm anyone else than the drink driver who puts other people at risk.


6
General discussion / Re: Man Utd Thread:
« on: October 08, 2019, 03:52:05 PM »
I think OGS gets a very easy ride from his mates in Sky. Of course you cannot chop change managers willy nilly but there's a very real possibility that Moyes as just one example, is a far superior manager to him. I thought towards end of last season when some of his players were getting flak from his mates in Sky, he said absolutely nothing to defend them and was far too happy to have his belly rubbed by his old team mates in the media.
 Maybe you reap what you sow. When the new manager bounce is gone, when the feel good factor of a change is long stripped away, there has to be something else of substance left. There is nothing in his CV to justify his position. He seems weak to pull up certain pundits when they criticize his players. It is those players who will keep him in the job long term, not his old buddies. I couldn't see Fergie be so quick to play the role of little brother to them. Couldn't see him allow the board start the season without a striker. People talking about giving him hundreds of millions to spend and then see what happens. Personally I wouldn't trust him with the kids lunch money.

to be fair to Ole his three signing in the summer have been three of United's best players so far. Wan Bissake, James and Maguire. The issue with the team at the minute is definitely not driven by those three. The issues are higher up the pitch and he did not address them but you have to question who was available? Klopp was questioned early doors about not buying a new keeper/Cb etc and while it definitely hurt Liverpool short term the benefits of him holding out for  VVD and Allison rather than going for a second choice target has paid dividends in the last couple of seasons.

Off potential summer targets I think the likes of Couthinho and Fernades (sp) would have been good additions but I am struggling to think of a decent striker they could realistically have signed without getting completely screwed on price. Joao Felix at €126m? Dybala? Maxi Gomez?

When they went to Newcastle for Longstaff they were quoted £50m for a 19/20 year old midfielder who had started 13 games! While they might look back in a couple of years and take the view that he or Jaoa felix would have been good purchases (like Rooney) but equally they could have been major flops.

If they hadn't targets lined up then they shouldn't have let players go. Sanchez is the only exception I'd have to that. I think maybe his weakness for flattery from old mates could have burned bridges with a few of the players when things were going a little pear shaped end of last season. His loyalty should be to his players, no one else and he came across a bit pathetic in that regard for my money. Neville and Keane might make some valid points that we can agree with but OGS does not have that luxury, not in public anyway. So I'd question his judgement and yes I'd be wary giving him the lunch money. He's a football man and I'm sure he has an eye for players but that doesn't mean he can manage a big club.
 There's a few cliches doing the rounds at the moment- can't keep changing managers, too big to go down. If a manager is not up to the task you most certainly change him. But Utd are most certainly too big to go down and it will not happen. That's where the changing the manager bit comes into it.

I'm certainly not saying Ole is a great manager, I was making the point that his purchases have actually been pretty good.

All this relegation zone crap is just hyberbole. United will finish in the top six, they could push for top 4 depending on how the other teams perform. its only 8 games in FFS.  Whether Ole is the man who gets them there or not could be determined by their next game. A win against Liverpool will buy him a fair bit of time and goodwill, equally an abject defeat at OT could create a fan furore and a knee jerk reaction.

7
General discussion / Re: Man Utd Thread:
« on: October 08, 2019, 12:51:26 PM »
I think OGS gets a very easy ride from his mates in Sky. Of course you cannot chop change managers willy nilly but there's a very real possibility that Moyes as just one example, is a far superior manager to him. I thought towards end of last season when some of his players were getting flak from his mates in Sky, he said absolutely nothing to defend them and was far too happy to have his belly rubbed by his old team mates in the media.
 Maybe you reap what you sow. When the new manager bounce is gone, when the feel good factor of a change is long stripped away, there has to be something else of substance left. There is nothing in his CV to justify his position. He seems weak to pull up certain pundits when they criticize his players. It is those players who will keep him in the job long term, not his old buddies. I couldn't see Fergie be so quick to play the role of little brother to them. Couldn't see him allow the board start the season without a striker. People talking about giving him hundreds of millions to spend and then see what happens. Personally I wouldn't trust him with the kids lunch money.

to be fair to Ole his three signing in the summer have been three of United's best players so far. Wan Bissake, James and Maguire. The issue with the team at the minute is definitely not driven by those three. The issues are higher up the pitch and he did not address them but you have to question who was available? Klopp was questioned early doors about not buying a new keeper/Cb etc and while it definitely hurt Liverpool short term the benefits of him holding out for  VVD and Allison rather than going for a second choice target has paid dividends in the last couple of seasons.

Off potential summer targets I think the likes of Couthinho and Fernades (sp) would have been good additions but I am struggling to think of a decent striker they could realistically have signed without getting completely screwed on price. Joao Felix at €126m? Dybala? Maxi Gomez?

When they went to Newcastle for Longstaff they were quoted £50m for a 19/20 year old midfielder who had started 13 games! While they might look back in a couple of years and take the view that he or Jaoa felix would have been good purchases (like Rooney) but equally they could have been major flops.

8
General discussion / Re: Man Utd Thread:
« on: October 04, 2019, 07:58:05 AM »
Jesus, United are a total shambles.

Wait till you see, they'll get a result against Liverpool at OT in a couple of weeks.

Yes, more than likely a f**king hammering. Results are relegation form.

Utd 3/1 at home  :o :o :o but will probably get a result

9
Tyrone / Re: Tyrone Club Football and Hurling
« on: October 01, 2019, 12:15:39 PM »
The league's are a mess anyway. No games for 8 weeks in high summer, then meaningless league games now in October.

It is. There is no reason why Div 3 especially should be sitting looking at another two weeks of league games finishing in the 3rd week in October before the playoffs even commence. The team that comes out of teh playoffs will have another 3 weeks minimum after that so it will be mid November before they are finished. As you say, there were an awful lot of Saturdays in particular over the summer where teams would have been quite happy to get games played.

10
Tyrone / Re: Tyrone Club Football and Hurling
« on: October 01, 2019, 11:22:15 AM »
Aghaloo have decided not field reserves or seniors for the rest of the year. Poor form for a club going round trying to sell tickets.

They are already promoted and have only have 1 senior game left to fulfil. Looking at the table that game could be weeks away. Would hardly blame them tbf.
I know they got the points on the board early and secured promotion. On the other hand, there are plenty of clubs across the county with nothing to play for. Indeed many show up knowing they are going to get hammered but at least they fulfill the fixtures If they all just went feck it the leagues would be some mess.


11
General discussion / Re: Android Boxes
« on: September 27, 2019, 05:01:07 PM »
You’re quite correct there General. It was you who gave me his details and I thank you for that

he has a bit of a screw loose but his system is impressive. jaysus i laughed at his facebook postings last night. His android app is also working tip top now. have the rugby on here on the phone

My supplier told me iptv gone forever and no point looking for it. Whose this lad youse are talking about might get him to provide it.

Is it actually? All the talk I heard from boys over the years bragging how they were getting Sky sports for £5 a month and how I was a big eejit for paying for sky.

Sounds like your mates are on the ball!  ;) ;)

12
General discussion / Re: Man Utd Thread:
« on: September 27, 2019, 01:22:47 PM »

Mourinho bought in Zlatan, Pogba, Lukaku, Bailly, Dalot, Lindelof, Mkhitaryan, Matic, Fred & Sanchez; Think only 3 out of the 10 were older than 26 when they signed for United.


LVG bought Blind, Darmian, Depay, Di Maria, Falcao, Herrera, Martial, Rojo, Romero, Schneiderlin, Schweinsteiger, Shaw, Victor Valdes.

I actually think LVG's list compares favourably with Mourinho's.

Both those lists are reasonable on paper. The bigger question is how and why so many of them were much poorer at United than their previous (and in certain cases (Depay, Di Maria etc) subsequent clubs.

13
General discussion / Re: Irish Business Thread
« on: September 27, 2019, 11:58:05 AM »
More bad news coming by the look of things at a big employer, albeit this seems to be back office jobs rather than manufacturing.

Caterpillar: Fears for about 100 jobs at financial services centre

There are fears for about 100 jobs at the Caterpillar financial services centre in west Belfast.

The company has said it is a result of outsourcing its global finance operations.

Staff in Belfast were told about the plans on Thursday.

A Caterpillar spokesman told the BBC that work performed at Caterpillar finance operations is to be transferred to Accenture.

Accenture is a global services and outsourcing firm which has a long relationship with the firm.

The spokesman said: "The company informed employees of its decision to move to a global process model and partner with Accenture for the delivery of select finance and accounting activities.

"This partnership will lead to a transition of work currently performed at multiple Caterpillar finance operation locations to multiple Accenture finance operation locations."

Accenture does not have a finance operations presence in Northern Ireland.

The BBC understands that the Belfast staff were briefed by US and UK managers and told that redundancy packages would be on offer.

Caterpillar is a significant manufacturing employer in Northern Ireland and has had a finance centre in the region since 2005.

People Before Profit MLA Gerry Carroll told BBC News NI that it will "take everyone standing together" to save the jobs.

"I'm going to stand with workers and put pressure on wherever I can on," he said.

"Government departments must step in, provide assistance and hopefully save these jobs."


At what point are Unions/politicians etc going to realise that government are not going to intervene in these situations?

14
General discussion / Re: Wrightbus
« on: September 26, 2019, 08:14:56 AM »
All these dodgy donations to his sons church is will have to come under review surely. How can a company donate money to a charity? If his son was/is under the counter a director of wrightbus


Shareholders and directors can distribute surplus funds however they see fit. Given the company was making decent profits when the majority of the payments were made they can pretty much do what they like without breaching fiduciary duties. More recent distributions and transactions might be looked at though if they happened when the directors knew the company had cashflow issues. 


15
General discussion / Re: Wrightbus
« on: September 25, 2019, 04:21:39 PM »
1,200 job losses confirmed as firm enters administration. Ballymena has been decimated in recent years as highlighted above.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-49818156

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