Mour than just rivalry
> Why Man United vs Arsenal represents more than just Mourinho vs Wenger <
LIONEL MESSI Back then, it was Wenger against Sir Alex Ferguson and there was no love lost between the pair.
Of course, Mourinho and Wenger will dominate the pre-match build-up, but there are so many intriguing sub-plots to this match.
How will Wenger set up? Will he be conservative and go for a draw by swamping the midfield? Will Mourinho be more cavalier and try and get United to be more expansive?
United need to start putting a sequence of results together – they currently trail pace-setters Liverpool by eight points in sixth spot.
Under Ferguson, United were notoriously slow starters, but they would often look unstoppable at the turn of the year.
Arsenal meanwhile, have resembled in recent seasons a team with an inferiority complex and lacking the mental nous required to win the title.
Yet it almost feels like the tide is turning in favour of the Gunners. Wenger’s men seem to be in a good place and a team with momentum behind them.
Despite an opening-weekend 4-3 defeat to Liverpool, a comfortable 3-0 victory against Chelsea in September and their strong unbeaten run shows they might have the stamina to last in the title race this time around.
Yes, Mourinho and Wenger haven’t seen eye to eye. The jibe dished out by Mourinho of Wenger being a “success in failure” and the unseemly touchline scuffle at Stamford Bridge a couple of seasons ago will add an extra spice to this fixture.
But United against Arsenal historically should represent much more than that.
It’s not just about where both teams have come from, but where they are heading, and at the moment, Wenger has more to boast about! – Express Newspapers
has rejected Barcelona’s offer of a new deal and will see out his current contract, according to reports in Spain. The five-time Ballon d’Or winner’s current contract expires in the summer of 2018 and he will run the contract down before making a decision on his future, according to Spanish sport daily They claim Messi informed the current Spanish champions of his decision not to enter negotiations about a contract extension whilst on holiday with his family in July, after Argentina lost in the final of the Copa America to Chile for the second consecutive year.
The reason for Messi’s reluctance to sign a new contract is reported to be his ongoing dispute with Spanish tax authorities.
Messi was handed a suspended 21-month prison sentence in July for tax evasion after he and his father were found guilty of using tax havens in Uruguay and Belize in order to hide more than £3millions (RM16.33m) in earnings.
It is understood that Messi’s father Jorge and his advisers acted as
Arsene Wenger (left) and Jose Mourinho... Past clashes between United and Arsenal have often resulted in titanic tussles.