Once upon a time, you’d struggle to find a cafe in London selling a good quality cup of coffee. Nowadays, partly thanks to the arrival of multinational chains such as Starbucks, such places are difficult to avoid. This is no bad thing, especially as this coffee revolution has largely been based on increasing the quality of the product, and the public now being that much more knowledgeable about aromas, bean grinding and other such coffee characteristics. With this in mind, Starbucks’ recent introduction of instant coffee into its range of takeaway drinks (see photo) seems somewhat an unexpected step. One suspects that market forces (i.e. the desire to sell more coffee) was responsible for this sudden shift in focus rather than clamour from their well established clientele. Nevertheless, given the importance of marketing, its success is likely to be judged not only by sales of the new product, but also by just how instantly other chains follow this move. Slow roast slogans make way for the instant brew…
I hope that this relatively hard line by chelsea and england on player behaviour will teach footballers that they can’t get away with anything they like. The problem is that in some ways, macho thug-like behaviour is slightly revered by supporters for its toughness on the football pitch, which in turn may perpetuate the players’ feeling they are above the accepted morals of society.
It may not have been the only reason, but Robinho‘s recent change of heart over his desire to stay at Man City may have had its roots in him knowing a little more than the rest of us re. Mancini taking over. Perhaps the new manager had already told the player that he was part of his plans. Obviously more victories like the one over Stoke at the weekend (and perhaps a couple of world-class arrivals in January) will help persuade him there’s a bright future ahead at Eastlands. Otherwise his signing will end up looking more like a statement of intent over a year ago rather than some concerted plan of City’s to push for the top.
This may seem like an odd headline to be claiming in relation to a 41 year old coming out of retirement back into the unforgiving world of F1. However on closer inspection, several changes in formula 1 may be more familiar to him than some of his rivals. He has great experience of slick tyres from his early days, refueling was not a feature when he first started (it’s now banned) and downforce levels have been reduced in an attempt for the cars to race a bit more (i.e. Cars may handle similarly to pre 2000 levels).
The choice of team is also perfect for him. Small new team without expectant and restless fanbase like Ferrari, a previously winning car that has been developed on from early in 2009 and most important of all, a teammate who is also new to the car. This way Schumacher won’t be under the same immediate pressure of racing against a well established driver within the team, in the way that Jenson Button will have to face with Lewis Hamilton at Mclaren.
Expect to see Schumacher near the front of the grid in 2010!
This morning I saw this most incredible story that Robinho actually wants to stay at Man City for 5 to 10 years! One amazing thing is that he even uttered these sentiments in English. However much more astounding is how this is a significant change of heart relative to his previous desire to go to Barcelona only a few weeks ago.
So, what’s changed? Well Barcelona seem to be doing just fine without him, so he may have been told he’s not wanted. However, I reckon Man City have promised him a bit of a sweetener. That can’t be in the form of money cos he already has plenty of that, but what about a superstar world class player as a new teammate in the upcoming January window? Which one? I have no idea but anything is possible given the way Man City went after and nearly succeeded in getting Kaka a year ago.
So don’t be surprised if a new face is playing for City by the end of January. I suspect he won’t be a forward as Robinho’s joy of being at City would fast diminish if he was relegated to bench-warming.
What a bizarre story. Two magical kingdoms?