Media Muppets: Benteke to Pay the Penalty or be Sold in January & McLeish’s Glowing Reference

Benteke to step down or be sold and Alex McLeish is apparently really good

Rob Brennan @ Daily Mail

Headline: Yorke says Benteke needs to step aside after two penalty misses for Villa

Spiel: Former Aston Villa striker Dwight Yorke believes manager Paul Lambert should consider relieving Christian Benteke of penalty-taking duties. Belgium international Benteke, who scored 19 league goals last term, has missed twice from the spot for his club this season – once in the opening-day victory over Arsenal, and then during last month’s home defeat to Everton. Benteke nodded in the rebound after his spot-kick was saved against the Gunners, but his failure from 12 yards against Everton came when the score was still goalless.


1. Is it no news day AGAIN at the Daily Mail?
2. Robin Van Persie missed a penalty while it was still goalless in Manchester United’s Champions League game this week. Should he stop taking penalties? Where’s the RVP crisis article?
3. The Everton penalty came very early on (after six minutes) in Benteke’s first start after injury. He was perhaps caught a little cold, plus, Tim Howard did pull off a top class save. And as the article says, Benteke did score from the rebound of his penalty against Arsenal, which had the same result as if he had scored it.
4. Dwlight Yorke missed a few penalties.
5. Yorke was speaking at the World Travel Market in London where he is an ambassador for Trinidad and Tobago. Stick to your new day job in the tourism trade Yorky boy.
Media Muppet Score: 9/10

Express and Star decides it’s already time for the Benteke January transfer rumours

Headline: Arsenal and Spurs eye Villa’s Christian Benteke
Spiel: The following is actually the WHOLE article.  Unsurprisingly, no journalist name was attributed to it:

The Villa boss watched the 22-year-old star waste two big chances to put Villa ahead against Everton – the first from the spot kick.But after another home defeat which removed further momentum from his team’s start, Lambert will still be more concerned about reports of renewed bids for Benteke’s services in January.

Lambert claimed a personal triumph in the summer when he persuaded Benteke to stay – and sign an improved contract – after last season’s survival-clinching top scorer had put in a transfer request.

But north London rivals  Arsenal and Spurs are today back on his trail.


1. The article starts off referring to  Benteke wasting two big chances and then they desperately follow that with ‘news’ that Arsenal and Spurs are now back on his trail. With that logic, maybe if he misses five or six chances in Villa’s next match, Barcelona and Real Madrid will be after him?

2. We were already bored by these stories the first time round.

3. If Arsenal and Spurs were really after Benteke, they would have been able to get him cheaper during the last transfer window than the forthcoming January one. For a club to buy Benteke in the January window on the back of him only serving a few months of a new four year contract, they’d have to pay a crazy amount of money. Thus a transfer out of Villa Park in January  is very unlikely indeed.

4. When are the Fabian Delph transfer hogwash stories going to start? Let us guess…probably as soon as he gets called up to the England squad.

Media Muppet Score: 10/10

Jame Nursey @ Daily Mirror gives Alex McLeish a glowing reference

Headline: Alex McLeish as Crystal Palace manager? Why Big ‘Eck can solve the Eagles’ big problems

Spiel hightlights: James Nursey thinks that the former Birmingham and Villa boss has the experience to succeed at Selhurst Park…
After talking in-depth to McLeish I do firmly believe he could do a decent job for the right club…This is no McLeish love-in…McLeish has plenty of experience in the English top-flight and decent contacts to pull in signings – which Palace have lacked…[Aston Villa] you can make a case for McLeish’s reign being successful there as he kept Villa up amid massive financial cut-backs to drastically reduce the wage bill….Few Birmingham or Villa fans will admit it, but Palace could do a lot worse than McLeish right now.


1. Have James been smoking crack?
2. It’s puzzling to what the motivation of this article was? Is he big pals now with millionaire Alex McLeish (a decent enough chap) that he’s trying to give him a helping hand? Is he trying to be controversial to get readers and thus advertising hits for the Daily Mirror? Is April’s Fool six months early?

3. ‘This is no McLeish love-in’ – granted, it’s more like McLeish S & M.

4. “Plenty of experience in the English top-flight and decent contacts to pull in signings” – of getting teams relegated or almost relegated, and he can use those contacts to sign naff Spurs rejects or give five-year contracts with hefty wages to goalkeepers in the twilight of their career.

5. McLeish’s Villa reign successful? Seriously James? McLeish still had several of the high wage earners at his disposal and signed two more in Given and N’Zogbia, so he wasn’t really suffering from the “massive financial cut-backs” . If he suffered any bad luck, it was with injuries.

6. Alex McLeish is the only thing Birmingham and Villa fans agree on – you wouldn’t have him managing your club in the Premiership.

7. Actually, with Palace as good as relegated already, maybe McLeish is the perfect man for the job!

Media Muppet Score: 9/10
If you’ve spotted an article that is just lazy journalism, or worse, and perfect for Media Muppets then leave the link in the comments below or send it to us via twitter @oldmansaid.


  1. not a love-in…smacks more of a lovefest !!! never mind im sure palace will only put him on a short-term contract

    • Thanks for the comment. These columns are always fun to do, mainly because some of these press stories need banging to rights for being insulting to their readers.

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