So Patrick Vieira has chosen this week as the week to kick off the end of season mind games.
Every season come ‘squeaky bum’ time, the clubs going for the title all look for any little advantage they can get over each other.
What a surprise then that Patrick should open his mouth this week without the care to actually think about what he was saying.
Especially considering the fact that he is a student of a former master of the art - Arsene Wenger.
He should know better.
Arsene usually did.
So used to doing his talking on the pitch, Patrick has opened his mouth to the press and played straight into the hands of Sir Alex Ferguson.
Kevin had ‘Love it’.
Rafa had ‘Facts’.
And if Manchester City capitulate over the coming weeks, don’t be surprised to find numerous mentions of Patrick and ‘Tevez’.
Manchester United were going about their business in their own way and keeping shut - knowing full well that they had the Carlos Tevez card to play at any stage if needed.
Roberto Mancini knew this.
David Platt knew this.
Yet somehow, inexplicably, Patrick judged the situation entirely different to everyone else at the club.
If you are going to fire the first shot of the mind game season - then make sure you have a good defence.
Patrick attacks Sir Alex’s decision to bring back ‘the greatest British midfielder of the last 20 years’ on a free.
A complete legend at the club.
One of the nicest guys in football.
And 9 league games later, having amalgamated 25 points from a possible 27 in the games Paul played, Patrick decides to call it a sign of weakness on United’s part.
In the same period, Manchester City also brought back a player of their own.
A player who refused to go on to the pitch during a key game this season.
A player we were told would never play for the club again.
He goes on a five month holiday in his homeland and is pretty much been condemned from every corner of the footballing world for being the kind of player who personifies everything that is wrong with the beautiful game today.
His return coincides with his team dropping a lead at the top of the table that at one stage was 8 points.
Yet Patrick believes bringing back Paul was the sign a weakness?
A disgusting situation that wouldn’t go away in January despite City’s best attempts to off load their Argentinian has once again reared it’s ugly head thanks in no small part to Patrick’s attempt at mind games.
The last thing Roberto would have wanted is any more press surrounding Carlos Tevez.
He knows himself that by bringing back the player he said would never play for him again - he has invited scrutiny upon his title charge.
Carlos has become a spotlight for weakness.
A spotlight for desperation.
A spotlight that could potentially derail his clubs title challenge.
And it was his own clubs ‘football development executive’ who turned it on.
Patrick has once again demonstrated just how effective a talker he is.
It’s just a pity that Patrick can no longer do his talking on the pitch...