It’s been that kind of month. Alex Ferguson complaining about Wayne Rooney’s getting lynched by the media, maybe helping his player getting away with a deserved red card. Ferguson had enough to complain about after United’s 2-1 loss to Chelsea. A soft penalty, the referee being lenient towards Chelsea and too strict with United players. There was truth to his words. Still, Ferguson failed to mention how he didn’t get his players to raise their aggression levels in the second half to match Chelsea’s. The FA didn’t like his comments. Ferguson was silent after the loss to Liverpool this Sunday. Again, the silence boomed with anger. About Jamie Carragher not getting the red card after his wild tackle on Nani. Angry at Steven Gerrard, telling Nani to get up after the hit. Angry at those claiming Nani was faking it. Angry he has now lost Nani for a few matches, his best player this season. He forgot how he defender Rooney after a foul that deserved a red card.
Arsene Wenger was complaining as well this week. Against the Swiss referee that sent off Robin Van Persie during the 3-1 loss to Barcelona in the Champions League. A joke he said. You don’t send off players for playing despite the offside. You don’t give a yellow card for that. He ruined a brilliant game. He forgot to mention his team failed to attempt one shot at the Barcelona goal. He forgot to mention (but Pep didn’t) that Arsenal just weren’t up for the challenge. Yes, they did score from a fluke corner. Yes, Almunia made some brilliant one on one saves. Still, Barcelona dominated from the first second. Arsenal didn’t defend well and attacked poorly. The Van Persie red card? I wouldn’t of sent him off, but the referee didn’t do anything against the rules. He was just strict when for a lot of people it would have been comfortable he wouldn’t be. The fact that it was in the Nou Camp, against Barcelona, made the whole scene completely different.
From Barcelona, it’s obvious Mourinho is next. We’ve already (and still discussing) Mourinho’s complaints and comments, be they justified or not a couple of weeks ago. This morning, during his pre-match press conference, Mourinho referred (again) to the advantage Barcelona have with their schedule in comparison with Real’s, regarding the amount of free days between matches, especially before and after Champions League matches.
“Iker won’t be with us because he won’t be in the squad against Atletico Madrid (March 19). If they want to end the league before time, I might as well make it easy for them.”
Mourinho is already missing Cristiano Ronaldo and Ricardo Carvahlo this weekend against Hercules and for the near future. He’s seven points behind Barcelona with 11 games left. He mentioned he’ll leave Casillas out so he can help Barcelona win the title, like he feels the FA favor. Well, not to dive in about Mourinho’s way of handling things, we counted the number of resting days both Barcelona and Real Madrid had so far this season before and after Champions League matches. Barcelona have had 64. Real Madrid, already including the Wednesday match at the Bernabeu against Lyon and the days after, are at 61. Not a huge difference, but probably more meaningful as we reach the end of the season. Is that enough to excuse himself of failing to win the title this season, when and if? No. But he does have a point.