Football

A Recapitulation of England’s Failings at the World Cup

A Recapitulation of England’s Failings at the World Cup

So England are home and safe, out of the World Cup effectively after their second game, lingering only for a 0-0 draw against Costa Rica last Tuesday in a dead rubber match for both sides. In the midst of arguments that England’s players simply aren’t good enough, that the squad was too inexperienced this time round but will have gained for…

Joe Kinnear, Derek Llambias, and Tragicomedy at Newcastle

Joe Kinnear, Derek Llambias, and Tragicomedy at Newcastle

After he announced it solo on Sunday, and proclaimed it loudly and proudly to the incredulity and horror of the support, it was not until yesterday that – just before lunchtime – Newcastle United Football Club deigned to confirm Joe Kinnear as their new Director of Football. The responsibility was belatedly taken up by Managing Director Derek Llambias – the…

Alex Ferguson’s Legacy: Success at What Cost?

Alex Ferguson’s Legacy: Success at What Cost?

After The Telegraph‘s Mark Ogden reported late last night that Alex Ferguson was considering his imminent retirement from his position as manager of Manchester United; amidst betting patterns that were taken to suggest just such a possibility, and a flurry of speculation on Twitter; Manchester United and Ferguson announced this morning, at around 9:20 am BST, that this season will…

Defining and Preserving the Second Half of Michael Owen’s Career

Defining and Preserving the Second Half of Michael Owen’s Career

The media has been kind to Michael Owen in its response to his announcement, made last Tuesday, that he is to retire as a professional footballer at the end of this season. The focus has tended towards the achievements of his earlier career; and particularly towards those memorable goalscoring moments which began and peaked with his solo run and strike…

Arsène Wenger’s Upset: Arsenal in Review

Arsène Wenger’s Upset: Arsenal in Review

During a press conference last Monday, Arsène Wenger bemoaned the severity of the criticism leveled at his side after their weekend FA Cup home defeat to lower-league Blackburn; and argued he had been shown a lack of respect by the morning’s report in The Sun, which he described as without foundation, which stated that he was set to be offered…

A Summation of the Premier League Transfer Window

A Summation of the Premier League Transfer Window

As a follow up to this article published last week, recounting some notable transfer stories as the window reached its climax across much of Europe; and with the weekend’s games having come, and then gone, providing us with an early sense of how players will benefit, bolster or betray their new sides; I thought I’d contribute with this, my extensive…

Tales of the January Transfer Window

Tales of the January Transfer Window

Across most of Europe, there are but days left of the January football transfer window. The period in which clubs in England, Spain, Germany, Italy, France, Portugal, the Netherlands, Belgium, Turkey, Greece, Slovenia, Austria and Scotland may buy players ends, at various times of the day, this Thursday, January 31. The transfer window shuts on Thursday in Denmark too; but…

Why Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse Have Not Worked Together

Why Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse Have Not Worked Together

Demba Ba left Newcastle and his signing for Chelsea was confirmed last Friday morning; he played for his new club and scored twice in their 5-1 FA Cup victory at Southampton the following day; and his appearance on Wednesday night against Swansea only from the substitute’s bench, and then much too late, has put a certain pressure on Rafa Benitez…