This is going to be short and sweet, and will begin with me agreeing with an EE supporter.
We shouldn’t have filed a complaint to UEFA, official or otherwise. I don’t know why Bassam believes so but for me, it’s simple: If there’s one person wallowing in a mud pit, they’re just silly. When you hop in with them, you’re not only silly, but you’re as dirty as they are …. by association.
What Jose Mourinho said is well known by now, so I won’t recap it here. I will say that the allegations were so fundamentally absurd as to beggar description. Other, respected coaches called them nonsense and the world called Mou Mou what he is, a chronically sore loser.
“It isn’t me or my team, it’s the powers that be that don’t want us to win.”
This is, of course, why Krkic’s perfectly good goal was disallowed last year, but that’s another story. This one involves a craving for dignified silence on the part of my beloved club.
Four El Clasics in the span of 18 days is a lot of morbo, kids. And as I was explaining to a colleague who tuned in to the match expecting to see an amazing football match, history and morbo make that impossible. That’s a lot of hate. Two times per season is plenty. Anything more and this kind of stuff happens, because how often can any of us see someone that we well and truly hate? Four times in 18 days, with all the extra stuff piled on? No way.
No. 1 didn’t matter yet we drew in their house, all but clinching the Liga.
No. 2 didn’t matter to me, but we lost that one, and they won the Copa.
No. 3 was going to be the one, however, the one that would be potentially for all the marbles, and you know what?
We won. We didn’t just win on the scoreboard. We won morally, by being the only team interested in actually playing football from time to time. We copped two away goals to none for them, won in every statistical category (including most fouls) and left them a whipped, whining mess with a gibbering paranoiac for a coach.
What do we really need to say after that? By protesting post-match grumblings as preternaturally stupid as Mourinho’s, we sully ourselves. We didn’t really need to do anything except get on with life, as UEFA was going to investigate rantings that crazed in any case. He might as well have said “Platini humps llamas!” Do we need to defend our honor in a legal fashion against stupidity such as that? No. Our honor was defended by the 0-2 scoreline, and a Pep Guardiola who put the smack down in the press room. Then his players put the smack down on the pitch.
The end. Or it should be.
Instead it’s two teams behaving like stupid, petulant children.
“No, you’re more disreputable.”
“You’re disreputable times two. With doody on it.”
“Yeah, well …. well …. yo mama!”
We are dragging the game down into the muck, sullying the face of Spanish football (which, like it or not, both clubs represent) and making it all look silly. Mourinho and his club can do that by themselves. “Here’s proof, this video that shows nothing at all, really, but shows everything! And we have Tweets from squeaky-clean players who say you guys are divers. Neener, neener!”
What we should have done was sat in the corner, holding up two fingers and saying “See you on Tuesday. No comment beyond that.” Because you do one of two things to crazy people, depending on what kind of crazy they are:
1. Get them help.
2. Stand in the corner, point and giggle.
We have the greatest player in the world right now, who has scored 52 goals in 50 matches. His brace in Clasic No. 3 provided the stunning margin that makes our job on Tuesday immeasurably easier. Iniesta is still knocked, Puyol isn’t making the trip to Sociedad as he’s being wrapped in cotton wool, Abidal was training with the club, the Liga is all but won and we’re 90 minutes away from yet another Champions League final.
This is all news that I truly care about, far more than who fouled/dove/fought in the tunnel/called somebody’s mama a ho.
I like that the club and players are (mostly) silent about it. I only wish the board members had been as well. The allegations that UEFA is squiring us through competitions is like the contretemps over U.S. President Barack Obama’s birth certificate. Why bother showing the document? People who believe he isn’t American aren’t going to believe whatever you show them. You just waste time, and give their ridiculous allegations credence.
Some will say that we had to respond in an official way to the Mou Mou claims. Disagree. UEFA is the one being dragged through the mud. As for us, did our players dive? Yep. Did they need to? No. Messi took more abuse than anyone, and he wasn’t diving. He was too busy trying to kill the other side. Was the Pepe incident a red, technically? Yep. Was he also hard done by? Yep. But it all happened on the pitch. The only thing that our club helping to prolong this business does is give Mou Mou some other stuff to react to, and have more press conferences.
And who really wants to see that?