A once good manager, projected to have a bright future in management, was vilified by the nation and the press when he was the England boss. But for an unfortunate defeat in Moscow, England could well have qualified for Euro 2008
Anyhow, Steve McLaren then went to Holland to manage FC Twente. Again the press joked about his ambition and even his accent. Nevertheless, he has proved many wrong (or possibly reminded those that had forgotten him), by winning the Dutch title in his second season, after initially coming runner up in the first campaign and being forced to sell some of his better players. Anyone surprised if we find him managing a Premier League team within the next couple of yeas? Not me.
So, driving out of stamford bridge at a crawl due to the media scrum surrounding his car, John Terry accidentally ran over someone’s foot. This was an unfortunate incident but this story should be more about the media’s role in the incident than John Terry’s. The unfortunate official injured was only there to protect the player from the mass of journalists trying to photograph the player. Perhaps they should have been focusing on the game that had just been played rather than trying to get a photo of a player, one which would reveal nothing but the face of a person driving through an unnecessary crowd.
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Eight goals were scored in this match – Harrow Borough beat Waltham Abbey 5-3 – but the only topic of conversation in the bar was the astounding miss by non-league legend, Rocky Baptiste.
Given that they weren’t able to replay the game, the Irish have now asked FIFA to be added as a 33rd team to the World Cup, 4 days before the draw is made.
These sentimental approaches to football just don’t work. Who’s to say that France wouldn’t have scored later in the game even if Henry’s infringement had been spotted? How many other incorrect refereeing decisions in any of the other group matches do we want to retrospectively correct? If FIFA accept this request (which I’m sure they won’t), they’ll end up very quickly with a massive list of countries trying to correct all sorts of results in the past. Perhaps we should turn the history books into some sort of Wikipedia experiment, which can just be edited by anyone depending on their point of view of the historical course of events.
This article in the Guardian begins to touch upon the financial implications of Liverpool failing to progress in the Champions League. Though they have a firmer financial basis than Leeds ever did, the parallels of over-acquisition of good but not great players, often at inflated prices (hence unable to recoup value by selling), combined with an assumption of uninterrupted success and the cash that brings,sets up a potentially dangerous financial scenario. Failing to finish 4th or higher in the league this year may continue to push things towards the Elland Road model.
It has been reported this evening that the Wigan players will do a round-up collection amongst themselves to refund the fans who travelled down to London to watch them being trounced by Tottenham Hotspur 9-1.
Well, in my opinion this all seems well and good, and very sporting of them. On this occasion this was clearly a poor performance. But where do we draw the line? Full refund for 9-1 defeat, but 50% for 4-1? Perhaps we can have a pro-rata refund rate depending on number of goals conceded? Once the game looks lost, will the away fans start to cheer against their own team in the hope of getting their money back? What if the team produces an unexpected away win? Will the supporters have to cough up an “away win bonus”?
Watching your football team comes with a health warning, with equal risks of highs and lows (depending on your relative expectation), and it is this great unknown (as well as the belief you can influence the match by shouting for your team) that is the essence of football support. Let’s keep the money side of things for the ticket shops outside the ground, and once inside, the football match shuld be watched purely as a form of unpredictable, non-refundable entertainment, as it’s always been.
Why are Liverpool letting Torres rest on a hernia? They don’t heal of their own accord – they need surgical intervention. We’re in the middle of an international break – seems like the perfect time to get the op done and minimise the number of games missed. He could be back in time for busy Christmas period.
Back to their old tricks from Formula 1 days last night:
Worse thing was that during F1, the breaks were planned in some way. This was just a mistake – not even ITV could have out an advert in the last few minutes of extra time.