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Good Days, Bad Days and the Fans Need To Accept that

Anyone else struggling to get out of bed this morning?

October 20th 1996
Newcastle United 5 – 0 Manchester United

It was United’s worst defeat since October 1984 when they lost 5-0 at Everton. Alex Ferguson said it was the worst scoreline of his 22-year managerial career. History was being rewritten, chapter by chapter: the flood of goals were the first United had conceded in nine hours and nine minutes. It was 999 time.

The stats marched all over United. Newcastle’s seventh successive Premiership victory, their first League success over United in nine years, propelled Kevin Keegan’s rampant side back to the top of the table.

But anyone who knows the champions and their manager will appreciate that they will swiftly be back.

Manager reaction: “When you lose 5-0, you take your medicine and go home. We can take it, we’ll be OK. We could have scored five goals ourselves, it was an unusual game, the biggest defeat of my career as a manager; but, I’ll put it down as a blip, we’ll go on from here.”

Six days later we got thrashed 6-3 by Southampton although fortunately a defeat at the hands of Leicester for Newcastle ensured we kept within three points of them. However, another defeat the following week, losing 2-1 at home to Chelsea, took us six points behind.

By the end of the season, we finished eight points clear.

Football is different these days and it’s hard to imagine a team losing three games on the trot going on to claim the title, however, this should give us a touch of perspective. Waking up yesterday morning felt like shit, going in to work this morning felt like shit, but once the euphoria over Liverpool’s result settles, it leaves us four points clear at the top with a game in hand. Christ, Liverpool aren’t even the team below us in the table, thanks to City’s result at Stamford Bridge.

You have shit days in football and you have great days. As United fans, we’ve had more than our fair share of great days and it’s easy to take that for granted. My desperation for us to get a result this season doesn’t compare with my desperation in the 06-07 season. That doesn’t mean I care less or I’m not as bothered, rather I’ve adjusted to being spoilt, just as I did in the 90′s. As well as being a wake up call for the players, the result was a wake up for the fans.

There are fans who sit a few rows in front of me at Old Trafford who like the idea of being a ‘top red’. Carrick is a wanker and Berbatov is a lazy twat, apparently. They are vocal with their opinions because they are pissed when they arrive, ten minutes late. They’re even more vocal in the second half after returning to their seats five minutes after kick-off so they could finish their pints. Then they get home before the rest of us because they leave five or ten minutes early, depending on the score. Top reds.

When Liverpool’s third went in they jumped to their feet and they were off. “Fuck this!” How easy it would be to ‘support’ a team in such a way. Jumping for joy in May but fucking off every time your team don’t get the result you want. Their exit stirred similar emotions in those sitting around me, “fuck off then! Don’t bother coming back!” and the like being hurled in their direction as they skipped down the steps.

By the time the final whistle went, there were far more empty red seats than there were those filled with dejected fans. Maybe the thought of hearing those bastards cheering at the final whistle was too much for them or maybe they wanted a good seat at the bar or maybe they were starving after missing lunch to get to the game. But those who did stay, sharing in the humiliation and disappointment, felt the satisfaction of being there. “We love United, we do!” was chanted, before “Champions of England! Champions of Europe!”. Don’t get too down lads, we’ve got a title to win here!

When you compare this with Liverpool’s 0-0 at home to West Ham, which also cleared large areas of their ground, they BOOED their team off. Can you believe it? Top of the fucking table and they’re booing. It’s disgusting. They think they’re the best fans in the country and they BOO their own team for a draw when they’re top of the league.

So, for those of you who stuck around, good on you. Those who left with twenty minutes to go, why did you bother coming? It’s time to get a grip because we want this title, we are more than capable of winning it, and walking out whenever it gets tough won’t cut it. I imagine none of the players wanted to show up at training this morning, knowing Ferguson was going to tear another strip off them, but they have to grit their teeth and get on with it, and as fans, we have to do the same.

Beating us at home and away will be the highlight of Liverpool’s season. We have bigger fish to fry than that.

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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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323 Comments

  1. knightsmith says:

    laterz peeps!

  2. jon says:

    Knightsmith, I suppose you are assuming i do not work. again, it is your right to express your views… doesn’t bother me.

    At end of the day… there are 2 things that ll make Man U fan’s happy.

    Title number 19 and CL number 5.

    Some of us are born to set records, some of us are born to chase records…

    you be the judge. It should be a shame that Fergie made a career trying to break Liverpool’s record, what is next after breaking Liverpool’s record?

    Madrid, AC and Bayern? you claimed to be the best in the world. but your record is not even as good as Liverpool, Madrid, AC, and Bayern.

    Legendary stuff… 2 champions league medal in 23 yrs. You lot to write a book about it.

  3. costas says:

    Ok guys.No one answers to Jon anymore.Certifiable liar.

  4. knightsmith says:

    Jon
    Really must go to work now.
    Please get for facts right, I think you’ll find it’s two champions league medals in the last 10 years. 1999 and 2008, I don’t know where you get 23 from, probably thinking about your IQ.

    You ought to write books, i wouls suggest fantasy, because that’s all you dippers can do fantasise.

    Keep battling for third place won’t you?

  5. jon says:

    LOL.. where are the lies…? You just can’t handle the truth. You are not the first,

  6. jon says:

    Fergie has been manager of Man U for how many year? It is 10 now? funny you mentioned IQ,

    I think Rafa is been judged on 4.5 yrs… So it is reasonable to judge Fergie on 10?

    Pls do not expose your self. Fergie took over in 1986. 2009 minus 1986 is 23. I know these sort of high level mathematics are rocket science to you, so you are allowed.

  7. jon says:

    Knightsmith, for real.. No disrespect, if my IQ is 23, yours ll be lower.

    come on just look at the basis for most of your arguments. baseless and thoughtless are what comes to mind when describing your emotional based argument.

  8. Colbert says:

    Jon, turn off your computer and go make friends with some fellow Dippers. Seriously.

  9. Giles Oakley says:

    Liverpool beat us fair and square, no doubt about it, and I’ve had to take it on the chin from my Scouse friends, not to mention assorted Chelsea fans , Gooners etc, who all had a good laugh. I accept it as the price you pay for ‘football, eh? bloody hell!’ But now it’s time to move on, forget about the bad result,and start thinking about how to help United . First let’s cut out the demonising of individual players who under-performed on Saturday, however much you dislike them. I’ve made the point before, we’ll only add to the pressure if we don’t get behind the team against Fulham. It’s not unlikely Fulham will take the lead, as Johnson’s certainly going to launch himself at our central defence from the kick-off. That’ll be the testing point, 1-0 down , everyone wondering if United have ‘lost’ it. That’s when we must get behind the team, not start groaning every time O’Shea (or whoever) makes a nervous mistake. It’s up to everyone to play their part, and not leave the stadium before the end , even if United are losing. The Old Trafford ‘faithful’ who left before the end on Saturday should hang their heads in shame. In 51 years of supporting United I have never, ever, left before the end, and I’ve seen some right old batterings in my time. So come on everyone, do your part.

    Oh and Jon, you made some good points, and managed a few good shafts of wit, but you ended up being incredibly tedious, especially with your repeated errors of fact and faulty reasoning. Making the same points over and over doesn’t really work as a way of arguing. I’m happy for you that you have so much time to spend on such things, but is there really nothing else in your life? I think I can guess the answer, but to understand your problem more fully I may need to read some more Freud.

  10. jon says:

    @ Giles Oakley,

    Good piece,

    You mentioned the errors of fact and faulty reasoning, I think you might have been more credible if you have provided some of the your facts to show the error,

    Faulty reasoning is a subject, I wouldn’t even dignify, someone think the best team didn’t win on sat, and most here thing Rafa has spent more or as much as Fergie, so that is very subjective, it all depends on which side you are.

    It is fair to assume there is nothing else going in my life, as long as my bills are paid, i don’t really think what i do with my time is any of your business.

    The last time someone suggested reading Freud, we know exactly what happened. So be my guest. let me know when you are done reading

  11. jon says:

    Colbert,

    As stated earlier, I have websites, so me on the PC and online is my livelihood, I wouldn’t go as far as advising you on what to do or not do, as it is not my business.

    But I have noticed in my 30 yrs.. that most people that gives advise on what others should do with their lives are the ones who really needs to sort their life out.

    hmm this is march, and I have been to Geneva, Costa rica, and planning another trip for april, both business/pleasure, I am sure most of you ll swap your life for my boring one. you do not have to admit it,

  12. Jake says:

    Jon- that handle on your door, turn it, pull the door, walk through the door and carry on until there is a sky above your head…there’s a whole world out there mate

  13. King Eric says:

    Giles is bang on again, Jon you have become exceedingly tedious. Who gives a fuck about your trips to “Costa Rica” you cunt. Do one.

  14. jon says:

    you lot asked about what i do with my life, So i thought it is only fair to answer best to my ability…

    If you do not want the answer to a question, then don’t ask. Plain and simple, but if you ask, I ll tell you.

  15. Giles Oakley says:

    Don’t know about Costa Rica, but I’ve been to Wembley this year. Have you Jon?

  16. OTRed says:

    How pathetic, wakes up on at 5:50 and the first thing he does is so post on a United website. Sad or what? You should go join those deluded inbreds like you on RAWK. Thats really the place for you.

  17. spencer says:

    In all fairness scott, berbatov is lazy at times and its something which is the opinion of a hell of a lot of people (including sir bobby charlton may i add)
    I heard he is also the last to training and the first to leave

  18. suhayl says:

    318 comments..the most ever on this site…and i have been reading the blog since its inception. And a dipper contributed about 200+ comments on A MANCHESTER UNITED SITE.

    WHAT..WHAT A SAD TWAT…LOL

    Blimey id feel physically sick even looking at that vermin…let alone living there on there site.

    What a saddo…like there team and club and the FSW…obsessed by us.

    Dippers…..deluded as always

  19. john ferry says:

    ” I have been to Geneva, Costa rica, and planning another trip for april, both business/pleasure, I am sure most of you ll swap your life for my boring one…and I have a masters …bla…bla…and I mention raping men every chance I get…bla…bla.”
    Is your self-esteem that low ? Im goint to change my user name to Jon Ferry

  20. King Eric says:

    Jon I really don’t want to get bogged down with you but I have just read the below post and it is a nonsense.

    “Fergie is good with money?? Are you sure?

    Luke Steele
    Diego Forlan
    Laurent Blanc
    Roy Carroll
    Juan Veron 28M
    Kieran Richardson
    Ricardo
    Fabien Barthez £7,800,000
    Massimo Taibi £4,500,000
    Quinton Fortune £1,500,000
    Jesper Blomqvist 4.5M
    Henning Berg £5,000,000
    Jordi Cruyff £1,300,000
    Karel Poborsky £3,500,000
    Ole Solskjaer £1,500,000
    Ronny Johnsen £1,200,000
    Rai Van Der Gouw £500,000
    Tony Coton £500,000
    Louis Saha £12,820,000
    Dong £500,000
    Kleberson £5,930,000
    Tim Howard £2,300,000
    Eric Djemba-Djemba £3,500,000
    David Bellion £2,000,000
    Alan Smith £7,000,000″

    Whilst I accept that some of those buys have not been SAF S best please tell me what is wrong with the following purchases:-

    Smith
    Ole
    Van Der Gouw
    Howard
    Johnsen
    Saha (ok injuries but a top player when fit)
    Berg
    Richardson
    Blanq

    ?

  21. john ferry says:

    Maybe he is off to the Swiss Alps on holiday, or maybe he’s too busy thinking about raping men.

  22. StenhousemuirRed says:

    this cunt jon still breathing???? fucking great

  23. Bob says:

    Rafa BenitezRafa BenitRafa BenitezezRafa BenitezRafa BenitezRafa BenitezRafa BenitezRafa BenitezRafa Benitez

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