The alleged laziness of certain footballers has been a talking point in recent days, after former Fulham player Brede Hangeland gave a hilarious interview to a Norwegian football podcast and accused several former team-mates - including Emmanuel Adebayor and Wilfried Zaha - of comical levels of lethargy. Adebayor, claimed Hangeland, would sit in the gym with "a cup of coffee and a muffin" while his team-mates were undergoing strength workouts.
On the one hand it seems surprising that top footballers could possibly be lazy - after all, they only work a few hours a day, are doing something they love and have incredible opportunities at their feet - but on the other, they get paid outrageous amounts of money, live in extreme comfort and have endless black holes of temptation to fall into.
Federico Macheda and Adnan Januzaj are players who have undoubtedly frustrated Man United fans. Both seemed destined for greatness at Old Trafford. Macheda once caused Martin Tyler to go into convulsions after a last-minute winner against Aston Villa in 2009 and is now playing in Serie B. Januzaj has been playing fairly unremarkably for Sunderland. Another promising youngster is James Wilson, who was on loan at Derby earlier in the season but is currently back at United treating a knee injury.
It's important to emphasize that these players are only 25 (Macheda) and 21 (Januzaj and Wilson) respectively. Their careers aren't exactly over. But their attitudes need to change if they are going to reach their potential, according to former United reserve team manager and current Wigan boss Warren Joyce.
Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Joyce wasn't exactly glowing in his description of the trio.
The frustrating thing is seeing ones like Januzaj, Wilson or Federico Macheda get up to that level and stop doing the work they did to get them to that level.
Not play the games, not train as hard, sit in jacuzzis and not do the same weights and sessions they did to get there. Those are the frustrating ones for me, because that could be avoided.
You’re in football for sport, to be competitive and try to do your best and challenge yourself, so those things are on the periphery. You either want to be in a boyband in a pop star environment, or a footballer.
Revealing stuff, from a man who would have worked with all three very closely. It's quotes like this that make you appreciate the likes of Jon Walters all the more. Though not at the same level as Januzaj or Macheda in terms of talent, he is playing at a level above them by virtue of sheer graft.
All three can still be great players, but they need to take a leaf out of big Jon's book first.