16 Oct 2012

They're not good enough! Ex-Red slates 'unconvincing' Man Utd duo. Harsh..?

Manchester United players Danny Welbeck and Tom Cleverley are on their way to becoming England regulars under Roy Hodgson, and although both players obviously have their qualities, former Liverpool striker Stan Collymore is not convinced they are good enough to make it at the highest level.

In an interview yesterday, Collymore - who formed a formidable striker partnership with Robbie Fowler in the mid-1990s - admitted that he is 'still not convinced' that Welbeck and Cleverley 'have what it takes to make it at the highest level', adding:

"Welbeck might have scored four goals in 12 games for England...but he still has to be a bit better when it comes to holding the ball up when it’s played into him.

"As for Cleverley, his passing was a bit off against San Marino on Friday and I’m not certain he has the guile and imagination to be a real star of international football"

I'd rather chew off my arm than endure the torture of watching England 'play' football, so I can't really comment on how Welbeck and Cleverley perform for the national team, but the fact they're both regulars for Man United seems to be persuasive evidence that they have what it takes to 'make it' at the highest level.

Having watched them play for Man United though, neither players seems to particularly stand out. To me, Welbeck and Cleverley are bog-standard English players: lots of huff and puff, passable technique, but no real individual, game-changing skill that sets them apart from anyone else.

Collymore is not completely biased against United though; he may be an ex-Red, but a few months ago, he argued that Daniel Agger and Martin Skrtel are inferior to United's defenders:

"When you look at [Rio] Ferdinand and people like Phil Jones who has come into Manchester United, I don’t think Dan Agger or Martin Skrtel compare. They are a level below".

Given the decline in Ferdinand's overall performance over the last year, I don't see how either Agger or Skrtel are a 'level below' him. Having said that, Liverpool's defensive stats don't make for great reading so far this season: 19 goals conceded in 12 games, compared to United's 11 in 10.

Perhaps Collymore has a point after all...?

Jaimie Kanwar


  1. does any red care what stan collymore thinks?

  2. Don't think lfc or mufc fans really give a toss what the wife beater thinks!
    He is wrong on both points, cleverly is exactly what England needs, Spanish type passer who keeps the ball. Against San Marin he completed more passes than any England player has ever done in 1 game! Yif the opposition cant get the ball, they cant acore right? he also gt 3 assists against san marino! yet his passing was off according to collymore? Welbeck is very talented butt still only 21! Incredibly good for his age.but can and will improve.
    Skrtel and Agger were arguably the best defensive partnership in the epl last season, hence interest from other clubs in the summer.
    Collymore has been ridiculed since his rant about welbeck and Cleverley. And rightly so.

  3. Cleverley is ok, bit ordinary but would like to see him play in the same side as Wilshere, instead of the usual stiff robots. As he would do better when the set up is about pass-n-move as that is his forte I think, instead of the usual England rubbish served up by Lampard, Gerrard, etc. Though not saying the return of Wilshere will change things that much but would help as I think he has the ability to actually be comfortable at orchestrating possesson at international stage.

    If Welbeck could become a consistent finisher, I'd rate him quite well. His approach play is good, capable of some difficult finishes and good at pass-n-move play with his technical ability and movement but inside the box, boy does he lose composure with easy chances. Until he gets that sorted, he will always have big inconsistencies.

    In relaton to Collymore's criticism, don't see how he can use the San Marino game as the basis as Cleverley's passing stats were high as well as his assists, and secondly, I thought considering the lethargic nature of the team's movement such as Lennon's inability to come inside as well as Carrick's inability to go from crab-mode (crab-mode can be good for certain games, don't get me wrong) to something more decisive going forwards, he did decent. Welbeck's ability to hold the ball up is pretty good, it is his finishing that needs work, so I disagree with Collymore as its the other way round for me, the criticism of Welbeck. Maybe he should hold fire a while, especially considering the loads of people still have the patience for Lampard and Gerrard in a England shirt after a flaming decade.

    Jones is a liability to date, needs to improve massively. If he was Brazilian, he would have gotten the playstation jibe and general spotlight that David Luiz was getting, as he is too rash. Overhyped. I rate Smalling much more than Jones. I don't think Ferdinand has been as bad as the media make out (that Bale counter attack, that would happen to most centre backs if they were exposed by their central midfield and full backs to a flying winger running at them) and they are relying mostly on the usual 'getting old' stereotype but despite Agger & Skrtel's dodginess this season, for now I'd take our two over say Ferdinand or Jones.

  4. JK, you going to do anything on the Chang debacle that is going on at the moment? The club are having a right 'mare with PR over the last few seasons. What sort of senior staff goes to meet a author of a joke Twitter account. Shambles. But nice to see some movement on Hillsborough by the AG

  5. Hey OC. No, wasn't planning to write anything about that. It doesn't interest me to be honest, and there's no way to corroborate Jenkins' story (in the sense of what was actually said at the meeting with Chang)

    Chang may have said some of the things Jenkins alleges, but it's just one person's word against another.

  6. Hi. I agree that the contents of the meeting shouldn't be given much light of the day as there is no proof but simply the mere fact that (there is CCTV evidence as shown on DM site) Chang felt it appropriate to meet such a person is worrying, which is what I was focusing on mainly. But fair enough, I understand your reluctance to go into it as your not a Twitter fan (although it could help in argument against it ;) ).

  7. cleverly his garbage welbecks not bad meanwhile torres still harping on about the truth about him leaving lfc will come out one day

  8. His opinion has no importance to me at all. If it wasn't on yr site I wouldn't even know what he said cos I don't listen to his show. Don't read the newspaper he works for. Don't give a shit about the tosser at all. Even more when he talks about the players they play for the team I wish they'd go bankrupt today.

  9. Hey Bro, It was San Man fucking Rino. Let's not get too excited over Cleverly just yet. Let's see him compete against a country like Argentina or Spain or even Germany. These are the teams that England never do well against on a consistent basis. If he can put in solid performances against these teams then he is deserving of all the hype he is getting. Playing countries like that should be the measuring stick England needs to judge how good a team it has. Beating up on San Marino lowly San Marino is nothing to be excited about. Until such a time I agree with wife beater that he is simply average at this point.

  10. thats the most rediculous statements i have ever heard , remember from th kop end someone said you never win anythn with kids and what happend, this welbeck lad is class act and has got all round qualities in attacking and even pressing the ball just needs more goals and rate him like mark hughes; tom wait when plays in the big games both club and country you will see that he is that what england was missing in the jigsaw puzzle

  11. Spot on. Agree regarding Jones/Smalling. Smalling far better but Jones always gets the media attention and bias as he is more blood and guts. Jones is the John terry and smalling the Ferdinand. Always though rio was better but terry is a chest pumping blood and guts defender which English media/heirachry always rate higher. Jones gets out of position too much. remember he is only 20yrs old. Am a man Utd fan but would take Agger/Skirtel over Jones Ferdinad or Evans right now without doubt. In fact Agger/Skrt are prob the best ddefensive partnership in the e right now with Kompany the best out and out centre back.
    England team when fit should be:
    Johnson jagielka smalling Cole

    Chamberlain Gerrard wilshere
    Rooney Welbeck/Defoe

  12. You can only play whats infront of you. Cleverly completed more passes than any other england player has done in any other game.....this includes the other two times england players played against as you put it... 'san man fucking rino' Stan Collymore only sounds jealous cos both named strikers have already had more debuts than he ever had. (3 if your counting)

  13. A lot of people like yourself feel that he is great talent. Most be honest that i can't make a judgement on him as of yet till i see him play more football. He has been on the minds of many after he scored that cheeky goal against Norwich the other day. He may very well be the next best thing to come out of the English National set up as England prepares for 2014. Who knows he may be a house hold name really soon. All I am saying is even If he made the most pass completions than any other English player in the game against San Marino it is wrong to use the game against San Man "fucking" Rino as any thing but a " practice session." Stats optained during that game is meaningless due to the difference in quality between the the two teams. I feel that England would have beat them with any 11 people drafted from Championship or even any of the other lower leagues.

    If Cleverly is really that good then he will continue to do his talking on the pitch as he puts in solid performances both for Sir Alex and the England national team.

    Really love your insight about Stan Collymore's jealousy for Welbeck and Cleverly. Who really knows Collymore might despise them because he compares them to himself and feels that they will get more playing time on the national stage than he did.

  14. how the hell did this women beating doggin mummys boy get a newspaper column anyway .what a w""ker

  15. You've gone from calling him 'simply average' in your first post to you cant make a judgement yet in your second post!

    Your opinion clearly doesnt hold much weight if your going to continue to change it every time you make a post.