Today’s Tales: Pep and his cunning plan to stop the rot

Premier League Roundup

Manchester City are in a bad moment, there is no denying that. Pep is struggling to adapt to the style of the Premier League whilst remaining adamant that the Premier League must adapt to him. Vincent Kompany is looking at the chaos on the pitch and thinking “yeah, that calf/knee/back/hip/ankle probably needs a few more weeks.” Yaya is wondering whether the apology was worth it and the one man who would still put his neck on the line for the club is literally getting his kicked in in Turin. Now is the time for calm thinking. Sensible ideas. Proposed solutions. Subtle tweaks. It is time for one of the greatest coaching minds of this generation to look us in the eye and say, “people, this is how I, Josep Guardiola will prove to you I am the real deal!” What’s that Pep? You’d like to buy Messi from Barcelona you say? €250m should do it? Genius. Why didn’t we think of that?!

On my list of players most likely to be sitting by his mobile phone, reading a Chinese phrasebook whilst studying a tour guide of The Great Wall of China I have to admit Radamel Falcao features quite near the top. I’m not sure whether his time in England has influenced my opinion of him being potentially a guy who will go anywhere for the money and not do much or whether it is the fact his agent is one Mr J Mendes. Either way, it will come as no great shock to hear that Falcao is considering undoing all his good work at Monaco by hot footing it over the Super League to fill one of what has to be the few remaining foreign player slots.

The mere suggestion of managing in China was enough for Louis van Gaal to call it a day. It is thought that he replied to the tentative enquiry in typical van Gaal fashion, curtly suggesting that “I could not get the great Manchester United to play my way, so I cannot see that the mediocre Shanghai Shenhua adopting the finer points of juego de posicion.” Or something like that, anyway.

Finally, it appears that Diego has said sorry before mumbling under his breath “but I am out of here in July.” Whether we will now see the 2015/16 Costa or the more recent version remains to be seen, but Payet was texting him late last night calling him “weak” for caving in before he did.