Cleat Geeks

KNOCKOUTS, POYET UNDER PRESSURE AND OBSCENITIES – JUST ANOTHER PREMIER LEAGUE WEEKEND

It was another extraordinary couple of days in Premier League this weekend with no shortage of talking points. Here’s a look at three of the headline grabbing incidents from across the division, and there’s just one place to start:

Wayne Rooney

Sunday was a knockout (sorry) day for the 29 year-old – in more ways than one. In the morning, The Sun newspaper ran a story showing the England striker being KO’d by former Manchester United team mate Phil Bardsley. The pair were filmed having a boxing match in one of their homes when a solid Bardsley jab left Rooney seeing stars. The footage of the ’bout’ was also leaked, and it swiftly took over social media. The potentially embarrassing event had Rooney’s back to the ropes (again, sorry), but he hit back in sensational style.

United romped to a 3-0 success over Tottenham at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon, enhancing their chances of securing a top four finish come the end of the season. Rooney netted the third goal in the win – and it’s fair to say his celebration was something of a counterpunch to his critics:

The celebration may well be the haymaker that ends the situation – and saves the star a bit of face. Red Devils’ manager, Louis Van Gaal, pulled no punches (I did it again) in his assessment of the story and the British media; “In what sort of world do we live in?” he said. “I can’t imagine we are talking about such a thing. That a newspaper is paying a lot for a video and that I have to answer questions about it. What is this world, twisted?

“I think it is ridiculous that we have to talk about such things,” the Dutchman told Sky Sports.

Is this the end for Gus Poyet?

Things seem to be going from bad to worse for Sunderland just lately. The Black Cats were without a win in six games in all competitions and had won just three of their last 15 matches before they hosted Aston Villa on Saturday. Villa had managed just four away goals in the league all season, but doubled that tally by the end of their encounter on Wearside. In fact, they had netted four times by half-time, which led to the home fans heading for the exits at the Stadium of Light in disgust. A number of them threw their red and white scarves and season tickets towards the pitch to show their frustration with the current coach and the sides abject performances.

The Uruguayan is expected to hold talks with the club’s directors to explain the dire form and plan an escape from the relegation scrap the side now finds itself in. A new manager could be the answer, though, and that would certainly go some way to appeasing the fans. The club’s chairman Ellis Short is no stranger to giving managers the chop and he might well be looking at the revival Tim Sherwood is leading at Villa – who have now won two league games in a row and reached the FA Cup semi-finals – since he took charge last month.

The pressure is most definitely on Poyet, who has lost the backing of the fans. The trip to West Ham next Saturday is surely a must win for the 47 year-old, assuming he is still at the helm by then.

“Waxing or waining? My arse. Prick.”

Not my words, but the words of Leicester City boss Nigel Pearson during a post match press conference on Saturday. His side had just been held to a goalless draw at home to Hull City, despite the Tigers being reduced to ten men for the final 20 minutes or so. The pressure is intensifying in the battle to avoid relegation and Leicester find themselves seven points from safety with just ten games to go. Their last league win came way back on January 10th – one of just four victories in the Premier League all season. Maybe it’s not surprising, then, that Pearson lost his cool with a reporter during the post match presser.

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