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THE CIRCUS LEAVES TOWN – BUT FORGETS THE ODD CLOWN

by Jim Boardman // 9 February 2012 // 27 Comments

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THE VAST majority of the hacks who got Liverpool all wrong about Suárez have already taken their first steps towards finding new topics to sensationalise. They’re so busy dancing on Fabio Capello’s England grave and making Harry Redknapp sound like a collector of major silverware that they might actually forget about Luis Suárez.

That’s what happens. They’re the ones who aren’t usually employed to talk about Liverpool FC and only do so when a story gets big enough for them to stick their oars in. They’ll probably find a way of dropping Suárez into their stories if the word count is a bit short, but as long as he gets back to being a normal, if extremely talented, footballer they’ll hardly remember he exists.

That reporter who works for that free sheet in London might mention him now and again, in between jibes about football disasters he shows mock concern for, all in the name of a bit of point scoring. The Alan Partridge of the back pages, he’ll find something else to pick on if we ignore him.

As the circus leaves town it leaves behind a mess that needs to be cleaned up.

That mess includes one or two individuals who might have thought they’d be welcome to run away with it. They’re clowns all right, but their attempts to impress their ringleaders leave them looking stupid now. They felt part of something special, throwing stones at the locals, but forgot how much they rely on those locals when the circus is somewhere else.

One clown stood out a mile. He didn’t even realise the circus had left town, carrying on like he was still in the big top, protected from the critics he’s normally paid to play to, free to carry on with his act. Maybe it’s not an act, maybe he really feels that way, but we’ll see that pan out in the weeks and months to come. Maybe he’ll try and join in with that ‘political’ lot he shows such disdain for.

Whatever he chooses to do, it’s hard to ignore what he’s done. And if anyone was in any doubt a great big headline pointed it out:

“Suarez: I knew what I did – and Evra should not have blabbed”

The Mirror's latest ridiculous headline-Maddock combo

The Mirror's latest ridiculous headline-Maddock combo

Suárez said nothing of the sort. It was a headline over the top of an article based on a badly translated interview. Suárez had spoken to Uruguayan radio, someone translated it with a twist, the clown twisted it a bit more.

It wasn’t the first untrue headline over the top of one of his inaccurate articles. One of his articles had to be changed more than once online as his jumping the gun in the race to prove himself to the circus backfired big style. He didn’t learn.

The headline referred to a bit from the interview that had been twisted. What Suárez really said, when asked how he’d been during his suspension, was:

I didn’t get down at any point because my conscience was clear as I knew how things were. As the law of footballers goes: what happens on the pitch stays on the pitch and ends there.”

David Maddock wrote the piece and between him and the uncredited translators they completely changed the emphasis of what Suárez had said.

Maddock launched it as an attack from the off, comparing his version of what Suárez said with “the discredited words of FIFA president Sepp Blatter.”  He went on to say Suárez was, “claiming his abuse of Manchester United defender Patrice Evra Evra [sic] during a contentious exchange in a match at Anfield last year should ‘stayed on the pitch’ [sic].”

Then the altered quotes appeared:

“I knew what I did and there is a kind of football law that says, ‘What happens on the pitch, stays on the pitch and that’s the end of the story.’”

Maddock’s piece had removed the bit that led into that, about Suárez not being down because his conscience was clear, making it sound more like what he’d wanted it to sound like. Maddock’s piece began with a description of Suárez’s fairly laid-back radio interview as “a fresh outburst over his racism ban.”

Why would Maddock want to misrepresent a Liverpool player in this way? He’s covered Liverpool for years, has he got another grudge against the club?

It was a few paragraphs down before he mentioned the bit about Suárez’s state of mind during his ban. He still skipped the reasons Suárez had given for not being down – it would have messed up the false line he was taking – instead branding Suárez as “defiant”:

“When asked if he had been down during his ban – the biggest ever handed out by the FA for racial abuse – he remained defiant and said, ‘I was not depressed at all [during suspension].’”

Maddock then reckoned that, “Suarez offered what appeared a startling admission.” Even his version of the translation is lacking anything that looks close to a startling admission:

“I know things will be different now. On Monday, I saw something unique – I went to warm up and had three cameras around me. All the cameras pointed at me. You feel observed, but I must pay for all the issues of the suspension. Luckily I returned to play, that’s what I have been waiting for all this time.”

Our version of the translation doesn’t seem to have anything startling from that bit of the interview either:

“Something unusual happened to me yesterday: I went out to warm up and I had three cameras around me. I was on the bench and all the cameras were pointing at me. You feel watched but you have to pay for the whole matter of the punishment. Luckily, I got back to playing again, which was what I’d been waiting for all this time.”

Unstartled, we ploughed on. And there were more differences.

Maddock’s version:

“I know against Manchester United it is going to be tense. But I’m used to having fans whistle at me. I hope nothing unusual happens. I’ll have to forget what happened for that moment. I do know United fans are going to try to make me feel uncomfortable. It’s not the first time I will have had cat-calls. But I have to tell them – they are going to spur me on if they whistle at me.”

Our version:

“[There will be a] very particular morbid curiosity, but I’m fairly used to being whistled at/booed in every stadium. There, it may be a whistle or a shout more but nothing out of the ordinary. First of all, I have to see whether I’m playing from the start, and then I’ll try to forget everything and play the kind of game that I like to play. It’s not the first time that they’ll boo me and that they’ll want to make me feel uncomfortable. The more they boo, the better I’ll feel”.

Where did “I hope nothing unusual happens” come from?

He might be able to blame the translators for this cock-up:

The Mirror’s translation: “I was happy to be back on the pitch, but I want to do something more for the team.”

Our translation: “I didn’t enjoy coming back to play and be on the pitch, but instead I thought more about wanting to do something for the team.”

Maddock's column

One to avoid. Weekly.

As if to prove his disdain for Liverpool, Maddock seems to try and goad The FA into believing his twisted take on Suárez’s interview is grounds for further punishment:

“Suarez may find his latest comments on the situation will arouse the interest of the FA, who have been desperately trying to play down the affair in the lead up to Saturday’s explosive showdown.”

Maddock will find his latest comments on the situation will arouse the laughter of Liverpool supporters, who have seen him for what he is and are struggling to find any reason to respect him or his work.

We’ve had our fill of the circus.

Circus

Rather than read David Maddock playing to the wrong audience have a read of a piece from ‘Ovacion’, from the Uruguayan press, reporting on the radio interview. A huge thanks to Rachael Singh for translating all this for us.

“I tried to forget everything and help the team”

A day after returning to the football pitch, Luis Suárez said that “it was really hard” to spend “all that time without playing” and acknowledged that the anxiety of “wanting to do everything from the very first minute” against Tottenham Hotspur “played against” him.

In a conversation with Radio Sport 890, the Uruguayan said that “I didn’t enjoy coming back to play and be on the pitch, but instead I thought more about wanting to do something for the team. If I’d thought any more about what happened to me in the last few months, it would have been even more difficult; that’s why I tried to forget everything and help the team”.

Suárez said he was very “grateful” for people’s behaviour towards him “not only on the pitch but also in the street”. Suárez said that Liverpool supporters had shown him a unique “affection” and that  yesterday’s game “continued to show the appreciation” that they have for him. “I feel very comfortable”, he said.

In conversation with the Sport, Suárez said that he knew that “they would look at/view me differently”.

“Something unique/unusual/extraordinary happened to me yesterday: I went out to warm up and I had three cameras around me. I was on the bench and all the cameras were pointing at me. One feels/You feel watched/observed but you have/one has to pay for the whole subject/matter of the punishment/ban. Luckily, I got back to playing/started playing again, which was what I’d been waiting for all this time”, he emphasised.

Suárez said that he had “always protested a lot and made a lot of gestures” but he said that from now on, feeling “watched so closely”, he will “try to improve on those aspects without losing the footballing ones”.

After the match, Suárez highlighted the positives of the suspension and first mentioned the support of his team-mates/friends. “My friends, many of them black, born in Surinam, all came out to defend me and told me not to worry. The same as another who was a team-mate/friend at Groningen, and I felt supported by them and by everyone around me. I didn’t get down at any point because my conscience was clear as I knew how things were. As the law of footballers goes: what happens on the pitch stays on the pitch and ends there”.

Yesterday, Anfield erupted in the 65th minute when the manager/coach, Kenny Dalglish, brought on Luis Suárez, who hadn’t played for Liverpool since 26th December.

[Suárez vivió intensamente] Suárez spent an intense 29 minutes on the pitch. The spectators chanted his name. The close-ups were on him, as a figure and a man able to break the deadlock.

One sign leapt out from the stands: “The Luis Suárez Show”, accompanied by an enormous number 7.

The forward/striker didn’t shine, but he was a dangerous presence on the wings and in the box. He needed more calmness and space to put the ball in the back of the net/between the goalposts.

Next Saturday, at 10:45am, Uruguayan [local] time, Luis Suárez and Liverpool will face Evra’s team, Manchester United. Talking to Radio Sport, the striker said that there will be “very particular morbid curiosity, but I’m fairly used to being whistled at/booed in every stadium. There, it may be a whistle or a shout more but nothing out of the ordinary/nothing strange. First of all, I have to see whether I’m playing from the start, and then I’ll try to forget everything and play the kind of game that I like to play. It’s not the first time that they’ll whistle at/boo me and that they’ll want to make me feel uncomfortable/unsettled. The more they whistle/boo, the better I’ll feel”.

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27 Comments

  1. Excellent article as always. But I fear it will be a while yet before the circus leaves town…a few monkeys have been left behind.

    • Exactly but we all know these Idiots(journo’s) will always be there looking for the sensational headline to justify their worth,but I hope all are not stupid enough to believe this Spin that goes on in the media,don’t buy their Rags or watch their News and just laugh at their insanity,Liverpool fans are too knowledgeable and intelligent to buy any of this,we’ve seen it all before and well see it again , their should be punishment for their blatant lies and spin,what that is only we can decide . DON’T BOTHER ENTERTAINING THE CLOWN! YNWA

  2. Fantastic loved it, maddock is a laughable,! Horrible little man! We need to rise above these guttersnipes, let the voices soar and the flags fly!

  3. Twitter is a lovely thing, is there no address for the clown known as Fanny Maddock so we can gently tell him how well he’s not doing??

  4. Nice one Jim. I feel there is a need for a site that LFC fans can go to (and that we and you can point people to) that highlights both the sensible and unreasonable media coverage of our club. Let’s reward those journalists who write quality articles and shame those who write crap. But we need a centralized repository something like lfchistory.net.

  5. This Maddock muppet is a clown,your dead right. He is a new breed of journalist a one who thinks his opinion is one we should all listen to because of his own self importance. I once read one of his opinionated articles which was utter rubbish and clearly made up( the content escapes me) but it was about LFC. I commented through twitter and to cut a long story short I was banned for telling him that he should get off his arse and go and get facts rather than telling us what he thinks. He is a modern journalist… Not wanting to do the leg work to get a story he would rather make it up #ShitWorkEthic

  6. Let’s hope we don’t have to look at Mr Maddock on LFC.TV ever again then, & they can add Mr Lawerson to that list as well.

  7. For me, some independent body needs to act as you have done within this article, and take such reporters & editors to task as creating obstacles to the iradication of racism via fictional, devisive & or bias contriutions.
    A thought also for Gary Speed. God forbit Luis Suarez was sent tumbling into a well of despair and depression, aided & abetted by “cheap” articles such as the mirror’s. You have to see such reporters as prostitutes who have lost self respect, dignity, & sold professional values for their art, in favour of cheap applaus of the uneducated. DEMAND BETTER!

  8. Pingback: Anyone else fucking tired of having to defend Luis? - Page 6 - The Liverpool Way

  9. Great piece!Well researched too.I’m 37 & have loved L.F.C since i was 6 & i saw the 81 European Cup final on the T.V with the old man.He used to buy ‘The Mirror’ & i remember they were anti-Liverpool back then.Remember the 84/85 season when we had a bit of a wobble in the opening months?I opened the paper one morning & there was a picture Of Mr.Fagan sat in the bootroom with the headline ‘END OF AN ERA’ The bastards couldn’t get enough.And then..’Dalglish AXED’.I was only a kid but the blatant gleeful manner of the ‘writer’ was not lost on me.Anyway the old man tired of ‘The Mirror’ & started buying the ‘Today’ colour Newspaper around 87.BOSS dad!Colour picture of Ronnie Whelan in Yellow away kit and no ‘Mirror Cunts’ in site.!! YNWA

  10. Poor David Maddock. Must be something serious, possibly terminal. With his last wish that he’d be stoned to death by irate Liverpool fans. It’s the only explanation I can offer to his continual vendetta against LFC…

  11. Still cannot for the life of me understand why Maddocks, Holt, Samual et al aren’t banned from Anfield. They couldn’t be anymore negative about us so why even entertain them.

    In our case, no news is good news.

    Ban them.

    • I would agree .These people;e are enemies of the club who use their privileged platform for their skewed version of facts. I could bet that if The Daily Mirror’s sales slumped on Merseyside,they would be quickly re evaluating the employment status of their man on Merseyside

  12. Oh dear……ANOTHER journlist does it again to ‘johnny foreigner’. I dont know if any of you heard about whats happened in Ireland in recent week but it has made me have nothing but disgust for the media. A journo for the Irish Indo ‘translated’ an article from a polish paper about a polish woman reflecting on her life in Ireland since losing her job. It was a completely innocent article until it was ‘translated’ and semsationalised. They basically made out that the woman was a welfare tourist and laughed at the taxpayer. It was bullshit!! But it caused uproar over here and had it not been for the logical ones we could well have had a very serious case on our hands. Crazy what the press get away with!!! They should be ashamed of themselves. I know it has nothing to do with Suarez but it just goes to show how.low the media will stoop for a story!!

    Great article too Jim

  13. And what angers me more is these people have a platform to spread their bullshit from…and a flock of brainless sheep happy to lap it up. I could go on all day about what the media are at here in Ireland. It makes me sick!!

  14. Brilliant dismantling of Maddock’s poorly constructed propoganda. I wish every supporter, from every other club that read the article in question, would read this.
    Proper writing, done for the right reasons.

  15. low end hack-to-rent. Fucking dreadful journalist. Great piece as always mate.

  16. Brilliant work as always Jim.

  17. Good article, as usual, Jim.
    What I would like to note though, we cannot possibly change the journalists. They are paid for the amount of attention they manage to attract to their writings. So the more sensationalist, the better for them. The last thing they are concerned about is the feelings of people.

    What we CAN change though, is 1) our own attitude: we tend to get overly defensive and give those maddocks too much attention – exactly what they are craving for; 2) the club’s PR. Something is not right in that department and needs a serious adjustment. The fans are being under constant stress and scrutiny because the club repeatedly makes some wrong PR moves. And then we start wondering why the famous Anfield atmosphere has changed. Why we ‘aren’t singing any more’.
    It’s time to address this particular issue. PR! We have too much negativity around, apart from having no European football. It may result in losing the fan base in Asia, Africa and other parts of the world. Liverpool is a club with international appeal, and we can’t afford that to happen.
    Journos won’t suddenly become ‘nice’ to us. We have to make them!

  18. Good article as always jim. Maddock has deliberately miss interperated suarez,s coments in the same the way the fa did with his evidence.he also wrote very recently that if suarez leaves, it will be because lfc are not being successfull and not because of the media negativety towards him! Why talk about him leaving anyway? You,d think that’s what they were after ha ha …? I couldn’t give a toss whether the media are “ nice ” to us or not.[ I give up on that donkeys years ago] .want I do want them to be though is balanced.that has vanished completely were lfc are concerned.they all showed their hand through this suarez affair by the total absence of a balanced article.have a look at saturday mornings sports pages,there won’t be one positive piece about liverpool.I believe the circus will have a new “ big top ” when saturday comes.

  19. We can strangle Maddox and his rag like we strangled The Scu*m…It’s in your hands boys simply don’t buy it

  20. I remember when I started going the game in the late 90s picking up fanzines (as was then, pre-message boards pretty much! I still enjoy the odd RAOTL and of course, Well Red) and reading about Maddock, who even as a young’un I noticed wrote lots of stories about Liverpool and lots of it ‘sensational’ and ‘exclusive’…

    …eager young me wanted to lap it all up and believe it, of course. But once you see the bigger picture, you quickly realise what sort he is – Robbie Fowler was always linked with Arsenal and it was always Maddock stirring the pot. Robbie of course moved on, and you start to wonder if Maddock knew something all along or if it was actually his manipulation of words and quotes that perhaps caused some of the ill feeling that lead to Tommo and God having their well documented ‘heated exchange of views’ which saw Fowler packed off to Leeds.

    As is almost always the case, the Liverpool fanbase saw through this hack and continued to highlight the nonsense he spouted – he was the first journalist who I learnt to take everything he wrote with a rather large pinch of salt – incidentally, that list grew so long that I ended up replacing it with very concise list of Liverpool correspondents who were actually worth listening to… so, David Maddock for me is at the reason we are all (quite rightly) such a dis-trusting, cycnical bunch of angry red men – for which we should thank him, while simultaneously shoving the latest issue of the rag he writes for up his rear, sideways.

  21. Great article Jim as always. It’s incredibly frustrating the power the “mainstream” media have to influence the opinions of others, and how they remain virtually unaccountable, but then it always has been.

    I do however think that there is a more serious issue of “press responsibility” here. At a time where there’s a lot of nervousness surrounding Saturday’s fixture, as is evident in the rules laid down by Greater Manchester Police, articles like this, the misinterpretation of Dalglish’s comments after Monday’s match (esp by the BBC of all people!) and previous articles in the Guardian and other newspapers, can only make any potential for “trouble” far worse. Not saying that any Liverpool or Utd fan would be in any way looking to cause trouble particularly, just in a general sense.

    I have no doubt that the Sky / 5 live / TalkSport/ Twitter circus will race back into town around about 12pm on Saturday and we’ll all have trouble focussing on that little round thing that’s getting kicked around for 90 minutes, amidst the rest of the sensationalist bile that comes with it.

    I actually think the majority of English Premier League football fans actually enjoy being part of the circus most of the time, but when the circus is to the detriment of peoples safety, happiness and well-being, which this kind of “journalism” is, people need to have the awareness to see it for what it is, and take the appropriate action. Whether that’s being boycotting, blogging, contacting the police, FARE (!) or simply making others aware of the facts, reality and truth of the situation.

    Keep up the good work. The situation would be far worse without TAW and others.

    • Thats the point I was making about the platform these hacks have. Unfortunately there are just too many people out there who take whats in the papers as gospel and just like we get angry at the lies, they get angry at the ‘truth’. Im very nervous about Saturday. But not about what happens on the pitch. Im nervous for the fans. Ollie Holt spoke about tribalism and blames the clubs for whipping fans into a frenzy. But the blame soley lies with the media and I fear with the stories they are writing it will lead back to violence. These ‘journalist’ have an element of responsibility and the editors have got to know where to draw the line when sensationalising a story….

  22. Nice work Jim and the Anfield Wrap! Let’s keep exposing these poor excuses for journalists, peddling utter shit to try to bring down the reputation of this great club (they only try to do it because they are scared of us btw).

    There is a show here in Australia called ‘Mediawatch’, not sure if your have it there in England but they would absolutley love this type of thing.

  23. One positive that has come out of this whole sorry affair is that journos such as Maddock and Barclay have been found out for the absolute gobshites that we always knew they were.

    Why can’t they understand that once they get caught out lying their credibility is ruined and folks just stop reading their crap? There are a few other UK journos who need to wind their necks in and think before they type, thankfully there are signs that some are doing this.

  24. what everyone is forgetting,maddock and saint holt work for a man u fanzine. and lfc supporters response should be dont buy the the mirror. it is a bad reflection on our club.

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