football; time for a fresh perspective?

Well the new season’s started and it’s a long time since I did a footie posting. Prompted by Charlie Cranium’s recent comments I thought I should offer up some thoughts on the season ahead which you’re all welcome to challenge. Let me know what you think.

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managerial swap shop; a never-ending story

So Man City finally sack Sven GE as their manager yesterday. Sven, of course, once accepted the job of managing Blackburn Rovers before giving back word. Now Man City are chasing Mark Hughes the current Blackburn manager, who once played for Chelsea. Chelsea once interviewed Sven GE for their manager’s job before giving it to Jose Mourinho, who surfaced yesterday as the new manager of Inter Milan, having sacked Roberto Mancini the other day. Mancini is one of the candidates for the Chelsea job which became vacant following the departure of Avram Grant, who is one of the candidates for the Man City job. So too is Big Phil Scolari, the current manager of the Portuguese national side, but Phil is also being chased by Chelsea. If he cannot be prised away then Chelsea may well plump for the afore-mentioned Hughes. Sven GE is unlikley to return to Blackburn and will probably take up a role with the Mexican national side. Blackburn may therefore go for Sam Allardyce who used to manage rivals Bolton before he moved to a bigger job at Newcastle from whence he got sacked earlier this season. The Newcastle job was probably the one that ought to have been offered to Sven GE but they’ve now appointed Kevin Keegan, who’s done the job previously. That was before he went to Man City who finally sacked Sven GE as their manager yesterday…..

pp

football latest

Groan…why oh why does Sir Alex (Queiroz?) insist on picking sides to try and play tactically? All they needed today was a draw to effectively seal the Premiership title. So, of course, he makes 6 changes from the last match and picks a side designed not to lose. Always fatal. Fergie and Queiroz just can’t do it. Or at least the team can’t. It’s not in Man U’s DNA to play for draws; their instinct is to attack with thrilling pace and to scare the crap out of lesser teams with the quality of their attacking play.

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spurs win; gertcha

Chas and Dave (and Colin and Shay) will be rocking tonight; Spurs came from behind to beat Chelsea 2-1 in the Carling Cup Final at Wembley. I’m sure it was the result most football fans would have been hoping for – a win for a team outside the big 4. And Spurs deserved it, they’ve hit a rich vein of form in the Cup and were the more determined side today. Plus the shoe-in Chelski manager Grant picked an odd side, dropping in-form Joe Cole and Ballack and having striker Anelka play out wide. He seemed incapable of spotting his mistakes until too late whereas Ramos was very decisive. I heard somebody say today that previous managers Mourinho would never have lost the game whilst Jol wouldn’thave had the conviction to win it. I thought that was an intelligent (if irrelevant) comment.

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the FA Cup; the hard way

Well if Man U are to win the Cup this year they’ll have earned it the hard way having been drawn against Villa, then Spurs and now the Gooners in the 5th round. If they get through it’ll clearly be Chelsea away in the QFs, then Liverpool in the semis. At least it’ll only be Boro in the Final though their regular dumping on Man U must be coming more than a little tedious to Sir Alex. Continue reading

anelka to chelsea

Incredibly perhaps Nicolas Anelka in moving to Chelsea has racked up transfer fees amounting to £85m. That makes him the most expensive player ever, overtaking Juan Seba Veron who cost a total of £76.2m (including £28m of Man U’s money although they did well to offload him to Russia Fc for £14m during their proligate phase). Incredible might be a little strong but it is bloody surprising because he hasn’t earned the nickname ‘le Sulk’ from being a loyal and committed team man and one of the most well-liked  guys on the  international scene:


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tick tock

Hey what’s that sound,? Listen….it’s the clock ticking……on Avram Grant’s time as Chelsea manager.   I haven’t done a football posting for ages but couldn’t resist it this morning after reading that Chelsea are to appoint the Ajax coach Henk ten Cate ( which looks like an anagram of ‘The Canteen’ – spelt with the alternate K on Dutch days) as AG’s assistant. Actually his title’s not quite clear. Variously he’s described as Assistant Manager, Head Coach or Avram’s Deputy. Maybe it’s all those. Whatever, it looks like he’ll be taking control of  first team training and shaping team tactics. He’ll also be paid £2m a year, twice what Avram’s on. Tick tock tick tock. Continue reading