Friday 19 January 2018

Have your say

Sweeney piece was spot on

In relation to Eamonn Sweeney's article From Wise Men to Stooges, I wish to commend him for a brilliant piece on Rte's humourless panel covering the Euros. Never before has anybody written about what true soccer fans see as a cosy relationship between these three stooges -- Giles, Brady and Dunphy -- and the disgraceful way they treat the senior presenter Bill O'Herlihy, especially if he asks a question which one of them takes personally which has happened far too many times with Brady.

The criticism of Cristiano Ronaldo has become farcical at times. The lad can score 42 goals in the Premier League, 46 goals in La Liga and yet this isn't good enough for the tricky trio who mention how he flops on the big occasions for his club and country. Messi has never done so for Argentina but they tend to forget or wish to ignore that the same Messi has flopped. Remember World Cup 2010? Don't remember him performing there.

But worst of all is having Brady on the panel for the Irish and Arsenal games on Champions League nights. Not once did he criticise Trapattoni, and then accused the media of being out to get Trap, naming Tony O'Donoghue and Ronnie Whelan. He had obviously forgotten he was working with/for the same media.

And let us not forget 2008 after Liverpool had defeated Arsenal in the Champions League quarter-final with "the face of a child who didn't get his way and was taking his ball home". This is a guy in a position that's meant to be unbiased, but he still works for Arsenal FC, albeit looking after kids, and has worked for the FAI.

We need new blood on this panel as the three men have grown too big for their boots and here's hoping we can get future unbiased opinions from Richie, Didi, Kenny etc.

By the way, it galls me to mention this, but as a Liverpool supporter of over 30 years, Cristiano Ronaldo certainly is the real deal. If only he could be a surprise guest on the panel, now wouldn't that be fun.

Peter Murray

RTE coverage is miles ahead

As a big fan of Eamonn Sweeney's column, especially on League of Ireland issues, I was really disappointed at last Sunday's article From Wise Men to Stooges.

To use his own words, he was talking "a load of old bollocks"

Sure Dunphy regularly articulates his forthright views which, as we all know, are often total nonsense, but this is a major part of Eamo's charm which we know and love. Rather than fall out again with his old friend, Gilesey usually falls in with Dunphy's outrageous views and Liamo just sits on the fence. Bill's "total gobshite" expression also works brilliantly.

His opinion that the 'B' panel of Hamann, Sadlier and Cunningham are better is also "a load of bollocks". If Cunningham continues to say "high up the pitch" several dozen times during each show, he should be ejected from RTE.

The whole package (including Apres Match) is miles ahead of any of the opposition and hopefully we will have the pleasure of Bill and the boys' company for many tournaments to come.

Ultan Campbell

Mystery of the missing lyrics

I'd like to congratulate Eamonn Sweeney on a great article, good points and written very well.

And if you didn't notice on Sunday night -- Eamon Dunphy was stating that the Spanish players chose not to sing their anthem as a sign of unity with the Basques . . . The Spanish anthem has no lyrics

James Osborne

Football is full of cheaters

Cristiano Ronaldo, like the vast majority of professional footballers who earn hundreds of thousands a week, has no problem cheating.

Unlike snooker players or golfers who prefer to call fouls against themselves rather than cheat (diving for penalties, calling for frees and corners etc), soccer players do what they must to win.

While I agree with Eamonn Sweeney's typically astute appraisal of RTE's 'experts' (Dunphy, after all, would have struggled to make the current Irish team), his defence of Ronaldo was flawed: the Madrid player hadn't the guts to take a penalty against Spain and failed to lead. A talented player Ronaldo is: a great he most certainly is not.

The RTE panel members, so rooted in the past, could not bring themselves to say that this Spanish team is the best ever.

It is . . . no matter what Brazil ever did.

Mick Finn

Sunday Indo Sport

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