LASESARRE, SPAIN - AUGUST 5: Puma Orbita, the official match ball of LaLiga in detail prior the pre-season friendly match between Athletic Club and Real Sociedad on August 5, 2022 at Lasesarre Stadium in Barakaldo, Spain. Noxthirdxpartyxsales PUBLICATIONxNOTxINxJPN 195228971

Well, that Manchester City European Crisis didn’t last too long.

City hilariously conceded after a few seconds in Germany against Hoffenheim but regained enough composure for Sergio Aguero and David Silva to score the goals that had Peppy G ‘relieved’. 

Pep was also convinced, along with anybody else that saw it, that Leroy Sane should have had a penalty. Maybe Sane’s body language didn’t convince the referee? Pep chose not to comment too much on the incident as he much prefers watching the matches from the touchline, not in the tribuna.

Manchester United appear to be improving. How so? Well, last season they completely underestimated Spanish opposition at Old Trafford and were humbled, if anything to do with Jose M can ever be humbled, by Sevilla. Last night, they paid Valencia enough respect to leave the Theatre of Dreams with a creditable 0-0 draw. That has certainly stopped the rot.

There was a little bonus of a Carabao Cup match hidden away amongst all the Champions League fare. Everton played Southampton but failed to jump the Gunn on penalties. Southampton are off on another cup run which will no doubt buy the hapless Mark Hughes a little more time. Be careful though, Mark. Those Southampton fans care little for getting to Wembley. Just ask Claude.

Jurgen Klopp is having to spend a lot of time defending Mohammed Salah recently, which is a little bit absurd. Salah’s stats are on a level with this time last season and he is only a couple of goals shy of the start he made in 2017/18. The fact that Liverpool, as a team, are doing better than they were this time last year should also count for something, no? Jurgey lad is expecting ‘more hat-tricks’ this season from Mo because, well, that’s what Messi and Ronaldo do. No pressure for the Egyptian then, heading into the fixture with Napoli tonight.

Moving on to some not-so-surprising transfer gossip, you will be shocked to hear that there are quite a few names scribbled on the blackboard in the boardroom at Manchester United under the title ‘should probably get rid of’. 

As suspected, Jose Mourinho’s name is on there with a big line through it and next to it, with no line, is Zinedine Zidane in capital letters and several exclamation marks. Zizou, however, has apparently called Jose to reassure him that he is not lobbying for his job – which is, of course, not exactly saying he doesn’t want Jose’s job.

Also on this list are Alexis Sanchez who looks like he has already left United but hasn’t told his body, Paul Pogba and Antonio Valencia. I know, the shock of it all.

Finally today, in the case of ‘why do people think he is that good?’ Liverpool and Juventus are the latest teams to be thought to be dropping Aaron Ramsey‘s agent a few late night calls reminding him that they’d love to take the Welsh international off Arsenal’s hands. Madness.