I read an interesting article today in the i newspaper sports section. It posed the question, what have these names got in common…

Coniah Boyce-Clarke, Ruben Dias, Bruno Fernandes, Gelson Fernandes, Kalidou Kalibahy, Nicolas Pepe, Adrien Rabot, Saul Niguez, Christian Eriksen, Kieran Trippier, Jan Obiak, Matthijs de Ligt, Paulo Dybala, Daniel James, Idrissa Gueye, Philippe Coutinho, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Wilfried Zaha, Thomas Meunier, Mauro Icardi, Moussa Dembele, Ben Godfrey, Nikola Milenkovic, Harry Maguire, Aaron Was-Bissaka, Patrick van Aanholt, Jadon Sancho, Gareth Bale, Toby Alderweireld, Joao Felix, Declan Rice, David Neres Campos, Kostas Manolas, Hakim Ziyech, Joao Cancelo, Marcos Llorente, Toni Kroos, Raphael Varane, Youro Tielemans, Robert Lewandowski, James Rodriguez, Keylor Navas, Lika Jovic, Jordan Pickford, Juande Ramos, Jack Grealish, Giovani lo Celso, Gianluigi Donnarumma and no doubt several others?

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What a way to go!


Well that was one helluva week-end of celebrations eh? Firstly the Cup Final was brilliant, a real old fashioned David v Goliath tussle and outcome. Mighty moneybags Man Citteh humbled by homespun little Wigan. And the Latics deserved it. And did you know this is the first time in the history of the Cup that the last 3 winning managers’ have had the same Christian name? But don’t you imagine that the fat burghers of the FA might have imagined that the name would be something like Wilfred or Bernard, rather than Roberto, when they created the competition 150 years ago? Cosi divertente.

Anyway on to the main celebrations and Old Trafford was a sea of sentimentality as they honoured the achievements of Sralex, said goodbye to the little genius Paul Scholes (and unwittingly probably the same thing to wayward genius Wayne Rooney), celebrated the winning of the Premiership trophy for the 20th time and they also won a game too with a cracking match-winning volley from goal shy Rio Ferdinand. Blimey, if you were ever going to attend a match at Old Trafford this season, that was it. I also rather like the shot of Sralex above. I see this and can imagine him singing…

‘I left my heart down Salford Quays, oh,

near Cheetham Hill, it calls to me.

To be where Metrolink cars climb halfway to the stars

Rooney’s mood may chill the air, I don’t care….

my love’s elsewhere, in Sandown Park noo.

Ah they don’t write them like that anymore. And once the applause died down SAF gave a speech was pure Fergie when he kind of summed up the essence of Manchester United as he addressed the players;

You know how good you are. You know the jersey you are wearing. You know what it means to be here. Don’t let yourself down’

Enough said. They should hang those words on the home dressing-room wall.

If a man could design his own send off that was probably it. Marvellous. Not many achieve anything like that in football (though rather neatly his successor, David Moyes, did get a little close at Everton on Sunday too) as today’s sacking of Citteh manager Mancini amplifies. I’ve always rather liked old Roberto but delivering City’s first trophy successes and title in over 40 years (albeit with the help of £1Bn investment in players etc) didn’t matter in the end. SAH had triumphed again; his final act silencing that particular noisy neighbour. He’s going to be missed when he’s gone – I mean SAF of course!


ps And as a little welcome to Old Trafford present for David Moyes, there’s a gift-wrapped Wilfried Zaha who put in a 5 star performance with two goals to take Crystal Palace into the play-off final last night. Mouth watering. I bet Moyes can’t wait to get started.

Fergie time’s up


Well SAF checked that watch one final time this morning and decided to call time on his career as manager of the great Manchester United. After 26 years and 38 trophies, it really does look like there’ll be no more extra minutes for the great intimidated referee in the sky to add on this time. Continue reading

want away wayne

And so all those dark utterings are accurate. Sir Alex Ferguson of all people has been forced to hold a press conference today to confirm that Wayne Rooney won’t be signing a new contract and wants to leave the club. Inside two seasons Man U will have lost the services of Ronaldo, Tevez and Rooney – that’s a lot of fire power which will have gone to rival clubs and not been replaced following relationship breakdowns with SAF. Could any club survive that? Once upon a time Man U would have been big enough to ride it through and possibly even prosper by bringing through new talent and buying world class replacements. After all they thrived after jettisoning players of the calibre of Ince, Staam, van Nistelrooy, Beckham, Keene etc But not now. And that’s the bigger story today I fear, not that player greed is now seemingly unquenchable but that Man U are just not the force they were even two years ago.

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Well hi there folks. We’re over here in Italy. C was here over last week-end and flew back Monday which makes me blue but R keeps me full of spirits. We’re working like bloody Trojans here as we try to get our place ready for letting it out this summer for the first time. Huge amounts of interest on the web-site –  if anybody’s interested please contact to learn more and hopefully be inspired to come out here. Hey, we need to be in London for the next couple of months at least so why not take advantage of our lovely home? Continue reading

adios los blancos

Hee hee hee …oh deep joy. Real Madrid only went out of the Champions League in the first knock out stage for the 6th year in succession against ‘mighty’ Lyon last night whilst Man Utd, with Wayne Rooney in imperious form, were thrashing AC Milan to reach the QFs in supreme style.

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so it’s adios manchester, hola madrid and last night in paris

I’ve mentioned my grandson S’s passion for all things football. He’s only 7 but simply loves the game; he plays whenever he can, reads every footie magazine he can get his hands on, listens to footie song CD’s in the car on the way to and from school, collects Match Attak footballer cards and can tell you any fact from them , watches any match he’s allowed to on Sky tv (including classics) and he talks about the game with such insight that he makes Mottie look like a rookie. He’s constantly posing me questions like who was better and why, Zidane, George Best or Cantona? And he expects a well-argued response.

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chelsea blues

Well first blog in a few days after yet another computer malfunction, but what a subject; Man Utd’s epic victory over Chelski FC in their Russian homeland. It was quite a match eh? Far better than recent dour encounters between the two teams. Thrilling, open, compelling and with twists and turns right through to the end. Key moments for me were:

– great first goal from Ronnie Ronaldo – just about the best headed goal I’ve seen in ages. He mullahed Essien in that first half

– the reds should have been 3 up by half time but for great saves from the bouncing Cech

– a great second half from Chelski who were clearly the more impressive side after the break.

– more great action in extra time with both sides having match-winning opportunities

– for once my side win a penalty shoot-out after all these years. Shouldn’t Ronaldo have been asked to re-take his? I was sure Terry was going to miss and sometimes you do get what you wish for, including a German losing a shoot-out for once. Oh ja. My only regret is that the Dog wasn’t there to miss the final kick instead of le Sulk.

– Joe Cole was a pain in the arse all night and did anybody think the Dog was hard done to with the sending off? Not me; big frigging girl. I didn’t see him in the post match activities – he’s on his way to N Italy methinks pdq.

– I thought Tevez was awesome up front but the MotM for me was Ferdinand; surely his finest ever game for the Reds?

– is that the end for Grant and ten Cate? Surely a big clear-out at the Bridgeski this summer. Mancini or Rijkaard in?

– glorious victory for Sir Alex who’s been bullish all week – surely (again) this is the best ever side he’s created. A fitting tribute to reflect the 50th anniversary of the Munich air crash.

– nearly finally I thought that pitch did well to hold out for all that time in atrocious conditions given that they only finished laying it yesterday – maybe they could move it to Old Trafford …..

– really finally, I was delighted to see the old snake-oil Kenyon leading the beaten Blueskis up the steps to receive their losers’ medals. David Gill must have looked on with great pride especially as Kenyon looked like a lizard in his soaking wet suit. How close are Chelski to overtaking Man U as the biggest football brand in the world Peter? F*ck me they might not even be the biggest football team in W London in three years time.

So there we are Man U are double winners again and it’s the big double. We watched it with full Italian commentary and it seemed just as, if not more, glorious. Great season if you’re a red, a Pompey or Spurs fan. Bad time to be a Gooner, Scouser or Chelski-ite. Next year eh fellas?

Once again (and just for my personal pleasure) here’s the moment Mr Kenyon when the European Cup said Moscow!

Thanks to Russ for the image. Lovejoy!