Guardiola-loving Henry has huge pop at Wenger. Erm…
1 months ago, 18 Oct 13:45
It is not often at all that Mediawatch will find itself sticking up for The Sun‘s Neil Ashton, a man who should probably become a driving instructor at some point, such is his mastery of the U-turn.
But sometimes even we are surprised at the lengths some people will go to to drive traffic, particularly when those lengths involve selling your own chief football reporter down the river.
Save your sympathy, for Ashton is in Monaco to report on Thierry Henry’s first press conference as the club’s manager. Writing for a national newspaper really can be a difficult gig sometimes, can’t it?
Henry obviously referred to his playing career quite often, particularly the influence Arsene Wenger and Pep Guardiola had on him.
“I owe all my managers,” said the Frenchman. “I learned the most when things did not go so well.
“Arsene made me understand what it was to be a professional and to show what it takes to perform at the highest level. Everyone knows my association with him. You learn from people like that and they inspire you. He unlocked a lot in my mind for me and I carry a lot of stuff from him.”
At least that is what Ashton writes in the newspaper version. On The Sun website, the only quote in which Henry mentions Wenger is this:
“Everybody knows my relationship with Arsene Wenger. He showed me what it took to be a professional.”
Which misses out quite a large and important portion. But that is nothing compared to how his comments on Guardiola are interpreted.
In the newspaper, Ashton quotes Henry thus:
“Pep is a reference. I re-learned how to play the game under him. There comes a point when you need to fall asleep eventually, but Pep will still be talking about it. He is ahead of the game. Some of his invention – well, I saw it for myself.”
Lovely words. Now, put that through The Sun website’s click-hungry translator, and what do you get?
“Pep is the reference for me. I had to re-learn at Barcelona how to play the game. You could fall asleep on Pep and he would still be talking about football.”
From “I re-learned how to play the game under him” – which is clearly praise of Guardiola more than criticism of anyone else – to “I had to re-learn how to play the game under him – which is clearly criticism of Wenger more than praise of anyone else. Sensational work.
And if you are in any doubt as to what Henry did actually say, watch for yourself. The addition of an “I had to” in the quote about “re-learning” the game really does change the entire context.
To complete the hatchet job, the headline to the website’s story leaves the reader in no doubt that Henry was coached improperly by Wenger at Arsenal, and Guardiola was forced to correct those mistakes:
‘Thierry Henry says he had to re-learn the game when he left Arsenal to work under Pep Guardiola’
Ashton’s byline is obviously in both the newspaper and the online version ...
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