Piers Morgan: Ronaldo better than Best, Law and Charlton put together

10 May 2009 10:30
The first 'oink, oink, oink' email arrived about three seconds afterthe final whistle on Tuesday night.  And they kept on coming, likeflies descending on a freshly rotting carcass in the African bush. [LNB]Manchester United fans were rather keen to remind me that my redswine flu had just proved fatal. And who can blame them? In over 40years of being an Arsenal fan, I don't think I have ever felt sosickened as I was by the embarrassing, humiliating, degrading farragoat the Emirates Stadium. [LNB][LNB] JUST SENSATIONAL: Cristiano Ronaldo stole the show against Arsenal at theEmirates[LNB][LNB]It made Ricky Hatton's second-round KO two nights earlier seemalmost heroic. But it wasn't a nausea brought on by how badly Arsenalplayed. [LNB]Though we were abysmal in almost every area - goalkeeper missing40-yard potshots, back four slipping and sliding into ignominousdisarray, midfield run over and trodden into the ground and a strikeforce so bereft of penetrative ability that I wanted to inject the pairof them with liquid Viagra. [LNB]   More from Piers Morgan On Sport... PIERS MORGAN: My 10-point guide to beating Red swine flu02/05/09 Piers Morgan: Scholes can teach Keane the value of keeping his mouth shut25/04/09 PIERS MORGAN: Wenger can make me look like an idiot but I'll be a happy one18/04/09 Don't blame Hamilton for lying when it goes on all the time in F111/04/09 PIERS MORGAN: Just how many messiahs can Newcastle take?04/04/09 PIERS MORGAN: Is this the start of the decline and the fall of Fergie empire?28/03/09 Piers Morgan: Bumbling Phil Brown is football's John Prescott21/03/09 Piers Morgan: Beckham cares more about his brand than he does England14/03/09 VIEW FULL ARCHIVE No, it was something far worse - a sudden horrifying awareness that Manchester United were now simply on a different planet from us. The gulf in class between the two teams was so big even Cherie Blair's grin and the Grand Canyon would struggle to compete. [LNB]I've spent all season poking and prodding at Sir Alex and his men, trying to convince myself that they were a busted flush, an empire in terminal decline. [LNB]But the reality - the harsh, bitter, hurtful reality - is that the side I saw destroy my club on Tuesday is the best United team I've ever seen. And in Cristiano Ronaldo, on the basis of his stunning performance, they have indisputably the best player in the world. And probably the best player they've ever had. [LNB]These statements do not come easy to a lifelong Gooner, trust me. Like most Arsenal fans, I hate United, hate Ferguson, and particularly hate that pizza-faced, whining, diving, sleazeball of a Portuguese forward. [LNB]But the statements, in the interests of historical accuracy, still need to be made. I wasn't one of the hordes who left early on Tuesday. Though I don't really have any issue with those who did. After all, who wants to watch lemmings jumping over a cliff for 90 minutes? [LNB]But you know why I stayed? I was actually enjoying - in a dark, disturbing way - watching United, and especially Ronaldo, weave their magic. When they scored that breathtaking third, I felt like springing up and applauding. [LNB]Every player on their team was magnificent. Van der Sar was assured and commanding in goal. Evra, Vidic, Ferdinand and O'Shea were rock solid in defence. Anderson, Fletcher, Park and Carrick were fast, furious, powerful and creative in midfield. Rooney was ferocious and thrusting up front. [LNB]But it was Ronaldo who stole the show. Like many, I thought he was losing his touch from the 42-goal genius of last year. I suspected he'd become a bit of a big game illusionist, disappearing when it really mattered.[LNB] God, how wrong was I? From the first minute to the last, he was sensational. There is just no other way to describe him. [LNB] Lightning quick, fabulously skilful, imperiously arrogant, inventive and deadly, he terrorised Arsenal in a way I've never seen before. [LNB]It was like Sir Alex had fused all the best bits of Cantona, Best, Charlton and Law in a laboratory, and come up with this extraordinary hybrid creature. [LNB]Ronaldo, and his team, were that good, and there's simply no point in denying it. [LNB]But what about Arsenal? I wrote in this column last August that we'd win nothing with this squad of talented but woefully inexperienced kids and I take no pleasure in being proved right. [LNB]United's team were four years older than us on average. And it showed. They were bigger, stronger, more focused, calmer. And, less forgivably, hungrier, too. [LNB]There was an extraordinary moment, when they were 2-0 up, that summed up their added desire. Rio Ferdinand, the captain, was unhappy about a pass that Anderson had made near the Arsenal penalty area and gave him an absolute mouthful. [LNB]I didn't see our young captain, Fabregas, do that once, to anyone, all night. He didn't know what to do and nor did his colleagues. [LNB]Conclusive evidence, not that much was needed, of Evra's post-match observation that it had been 'men against babies'. Boo, bloody, hoo.[LNB] [LNB] Drogba and Barton deserve the pushIt has been another typically unedifying week for modern football. The whining, preening, selfish Didier Drogba screamed disgusting foul-mouthed abuse at a referee, that vile, vicious little thug Joey Barton committed another atrocious career-threatening tackle and that silly boy, Nicklas Bendtner, celebrated his club's worst European performance by dropping his trousers outside a nightclub. [LNB]Let's park Mr Bendtner. He's barely out of nappies. But the other two are serial offenders. Both are very good footballers. But both have become serious liabilities to their clubs and are loathed by many of their own fans. [LNB]RANT: Drogba rages at ref Tom Ovrebo at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday[LNB] I hope Chelsea sell Drogba this summer. And that Newcastle sack Barton. But my most fervent wish is that no other British club rescues either of them.[LNB]My three sons absolutely love football and follow every move of the top players. I don't want them thinking it's OK to shout: 'IT'S A F*****G DISGRACE!' at a TV screen just because they don't win a penalty or to scythe two-footed into some poor opponent because they lose their rag. [LNB]Oh, don't get me wrong, I know my boys will make their own mistakes on sports fields. But they have to show a willingness to learn from their mistakes and improve their behaviour. [LNB]And, though this may surprise you, I'd point them in the direction of John Terry as a good role model now. Amid all the fury at the end of the Barcelona game, Terry took it upon himself to visit their dressing room and shake every player by the hand. [LNB]The old John Terry, the nasty, drunken, snarling one that swore, brutally tackled and fell out of nightclubs, wouldn't have done that. But he has grown up. [LNB]As, judging by his impressively speedy and contrite apology, will Nicklas Bendtner. Barton and Drogba, as they reminded us this week, never will. [LNB] [LNB] [LNB] PSEngland's demolition of the West Indies at Lord's augurs well for the Ashes and itwas particularly good to see such obvious fired-up enthusiasm from the players. Swann, Onions and Bopara all looked absolutely thrilled to be playing for their country and their enthusiasm clearly inspired the rest of the side. When Flintoff returns, and Pietersen gets his form back, I believe we've got a real chance of beating the Australians. Self-belief is half the battle with that lot and our new boys have it in spades.[LNB] Have your say [LNB]Just when I thought the week couldn't get any worse after the defeat by United, I hear that Adebayor has pledged his future at Arsenal. Don't know how you feel but I would give that waste of space a piggyback all the way to Italy. COLIN MASON [LNB]Piers says: 'Agreed. He's been as much use this season as a one-legged terrapin in a pond-swimming contest.' [LNB]Although I feel insulted to be called a pig by someone like you, who's got his snout in the trough as far as it'll go, the thought of those rats (who abandoned your sinking ship last Tuesday) sitting with you in some sleazy London pub on May 27, crying into your beer, really cheers me up. ROGER HATTON [LNB]Piers says: 'I am going to church that night to pray for a Barca win.' [LNB]Gooner bias aside, do you think that UEFA should reconsider the ruling that prevents Darren Fletcher from appealing his red card, forcing him to miss a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to appear in the final? MARK GUERIN[LNB] Piers says: 'Definitely not. It was the only thing I smiled about all night.' [LNB]And how about the biggest, most smug, full of his own ****, talentless, sycophantic slob, swine of them all? PETER NUGENT [LNB]Piers says: 'That's no way to talk about Jonathan Ross. This is a family column.'[LNB] E-mail your comments to me at: piers.morgan@mailonsunday.co.uk [LNB] [LNB]  

Source: Daily_Mail