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Benitez’s Words Come Back To Haunt Him

Mascherano sent offMarch 22nd: “I don’t know how interested United were in him last January but they have signed two or three players in his position, sometimes paying more money than we did for Mascherano. We are happy with what we have. I don’t know if United are happy but we are. Javier has a fantastic mentality. He’s a top player who can be a key figure for us over the next few years.”

March 23rd: Hargreaves, Carrick, Anderson OR a player who can’t bite his tongue and gets sent off in the biggest game of the season? It’s a tricky one. I will get back to you.

You don’t know if United are happy? Yes, Rafa, we are very happy.

Fantastic mentality? You mean, when he’s swearing at referees, charging from yards away to question decisions, and sarcastically applauding every decision he doesn’t agree with? Doing this continuously for 44 minutes to the point where it was pretty clear he had a red card hanging over his head, and it being a question of when rather than if he was going to be sent off.

Am I the only one who is glad karma has come around to bite Mascherano in the arse, after the FA allowed him to get away with no punishment following the incident with Aliadiere?

Despite Benitez’s claim, that things were “50-50 before the sending off” (I mean, considering Van der Sar hadn’t made aMascherano sent off save a United were 1-0 up, it hardly takes a genius to see the situation wasn’t “50-50″), Mascherano’s sending off probably did little to the effect of the result. Liverpool’s midfield was non-existent during the first half and their attack did not test Van der Sar once. However, his mentality is something that needs questioning, and as a United fan, I’m far happier he was playing against us than for us today.

Do you wish we’d signed Mascherano?

About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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  1. Sam says:

    I think this is slightly harsh. We’ve had players go off the deep end, behaving like this, (bear in mind how highly charged this fixture is) and we always stand by them, saying it shows their passion.

    I completely agree he deserved to be sent off. I also agree that Benitez has to eat his words. I also agree that we should be delighted with our central midfield, and don’t need Mascherano.

    However, I think it’s a bit far to question his mentality, and we must also recognise that he has been a mainstay for the pool this season (which is more than you can say for most of their team).

  2. jamesraj says:

    I have watched Machereno not only in this game but have obeserved him the last for or five games and each time adecision has gone against him m he has done the same, remonstarting with the referee with his shoulders raised and asking why, why , even when he had committed a balatant offence.

    Was the second yellow card warranted? Definitely so. He is an experienced professional and having observed Torres just being given a Yellow Card for Dissent he raced to the referee, despite being restrained by alonso and remonstrated.

    It left the referee with no other choice, becos if no card was given to Mascherano then he would have been questioned about the one given to Torres.

    The only saving grace for Mascherano is that even if he had been on the field it owuld not have altered the result, as such was Man Utd’s superioirty, but their glory has somewhat been tainted by the Red Card.

  3. denton davey says:

    Completely agree with what jamesraj has written.

    Mascherano is a terrific player but he had no control over himself yesterday.

    Is he better than Hargreaves ? Well, that’s a hard one to answer because Owen Hargreaves is never completely healthy.

    Overall, though, I’d have been happy if SAF had signed Javier Mascherano on the same conditions that he brought Carlos Tevez to the club BUT SAF only had eyes for Owen Hargreaves and who am I to question the FootieKnight’s wisdom ?

  4. OMelhorDoMundo says:

    Mascherano would have been a fantastic signing. I have always enjoyed watching him play ever since his days at Corinthians (even though he was more violent than classy back then). He’s a Keane type player that will get stuck in and some of his decisions will make you uncomfortable but he’s the type of player every team should have. He has good composure on the ball as well which I feel is the reason Hargreaves doesn’t get the nod in a 3-man midfield designed to keep possession. It was unfortunate that Mascherano got sent off yesterday because that ruined the match as a contest

  5. jimmy Bob says:

    he isnt a patch on keane though is he?
    lets be fair about things he offers next to nothing in terms of a goal threat (one in 50 odd games) doesnt motivate the other players around him and in two games against untd he has been nowhere
    (ditto for torres)
    his behaviour yday was shocking and the fa should hammer him with a lengthy ban

    ps does kuyt have some incrimating photos of fat rafa how the hell is he in the team?

  6. virgopq says:

    Javier thoroughly deserved the red card. He was just plain silly to behave in such stupid manner.

    Hargreaves is still a long way to being a finished product. Perhaps he’s still gettin used to the Premiership. Maybe in a season or 2 we’ll get to see the complete player in him. Add to the quartet of Scholes, Carrick, Anderson & Fletcher, I really don’t see a need for Javier.

    I do believe L’pool needs him more than Utd & I wouldn’t swap him for Hargreaves!.


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