Thursday, April 27, 2006
Doing the Maccarone
Maccarone: the Comeback King
Despite the best entreaties of a source close to the bar I have resisted the temptation to post on Middlesbrough outside of slagging off Steve McLaren. As far as temptations go it was quite easy to resist. Anyway now thanks to his team's near impossible snatching victory from the jaws of defeat in the UEFA cup not once, but twice; in successive European fixtures at the Riverside I feel congratulations are in order.
The achievement is as immense as it was unlikely, Middlesbrough aren't all that good. I must admit I had them to go down at the beginning of the season and have been confounded by a UEFA Cup final spot and a F.A Cup semi-final berth. However, their league form this season has hardly been top draw despite having in Yakuba, Viduka and Hasselbank three experienced, quality strikers.
There was mirth when McLaren splurged £8.1 million on Maccarone from Empoli (I think Maccarone had recently impressed in an Italian U21 team that had done their English counterparts) and quite justly so. Maccarone simply didn't cut the mustard, or the cheese if you will; so out he was shipped back to Sienna or some such team. Everyone forgot about him, everyone thought he had left and then suddenly there he is back from Italy and in the squad. There's no way he's worth over £8 million, but ironically Middlesbrough's biggest flop has generated far more than £8 million thanks to his late heroics against FC Basle and yesterday against Steaua Bucharest.
And fair play Steve Mclaren. I don't know how he's done it but he has. Emphatically. Still shouldn't get the England job though...
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