I hate to break it to you so bluntly but Euro 2012 is now safely behind us so it’s only fair to say that it was a rubbish tournament. It didn’t reach the lows of South Africa 2010, which I strongly believe was the worst tournament of my 30 years as a football fan but in truth it wasn’t far behind. (more…)
Robin Van Persie has released a statement confirming what the whole world knew 6 months ago, he won’t be signing another contract with Arsenal – no surprises that that Dutchman would want to earn more money and be in with a chance of winning an actual trophy at another club. Some of the more deluded Arsenal fans will be in for a shock though.
Arsenal have countered RVP’s statement with a statement of their own which suggests that they will be making Van Persie play out the remaining year on his contract and see him leave for free next summer rather than sell him now.
It’s debatable how much Van Persie would be worth with only a year left on his contract anyway, probably only Manchester City or PSG would be willing to splash the cash on a quick fix striker.
It’s a bold move from Wenger, but will it pay off? Only time will tell…
Stuart Pearce named a bizarre 18 man Team GB squad as the Olympics draws ever closer. David Beckham was the highest profile absentee who was left out for ‘football reasons’, although that does seem odd as I don’t recall Beckham’s brother being involved in any ongoing racial investigation. Truth be told, I’m not even sure if Beckham has a brother and I’m far too lazy to check on Wikipedia.
Beckham’s omission is relatively easy to justify, maybe he isn’t quite good enough any more but the inclusion of Ryan Giggs and Craig Bellamy does look very strange. Neither plays every match for their club (unlike Beckham) and honestly are they 2 of the best over 23 year old players that Britain has to offer?
The 18 man squad comprises 13 English players and 5 from Wales, there are no representatives from Scotland or Northern Ireland. A case can be made to not include players from nations that don’t have the same talent pool that England have to select from, but surely the whole concept and identity of Team GB is lost if there isn’t at least a single representative from each nation? Couldn’t we find a decent player with a Scottish grandfather? Or a player that’s ever been to Northern Ireland? Where’s Keith Gillespie when you need him?
For many football fans Olympic football has no draw whatsoever and that certainly won’t be helped when Pearce leads his team out in front of half empty stadiums. It wouldn’t surprise me if Beckham somehow did manage to work his way into the team if only to help sell the overpriced tickets on offer, for now though, he remains on standby.
Tottenham (or rotten ham as the predictive text on my phone wants to call them) have today appointed Andre Villas-Boas as their new manager. AVB was last seen crouching on the touch line at Stamford Bridge as he completely ballsed up as manager of Chelsea.
It’s a brave move for Spurs and chairman Daniel Levy as Villas-Boas’s time at Chelsea was anything but successful and included fall outs with various senior players.
Spurs had been expected to start the new season with Harry Redknapp in charge until he was sacked 3 weeks ago. Instead Spurs opted to sack Redknapp (and keep paying him until a new manager was appointed) as they look to secure regular Champions League football.
Arsenal fans are thought to be thrilled with the appointment.
A little later than normal but we’re back. This week we get mixed opinions as the team discuss England’s showing at Euro 2012 and ponder the future under Roy Hodgson.
England come crashing out of another quarter-finals from another penalty shot failure. However is this performance something to look down upon or something to give hope? It is always frustrating going out but one must remember that Roy Hodgson had just a few weeks with these players to implement his tactics. All Roy could really do in such a short time was to make sure England was hard to beat and it has to be admitted he did just that.
With Euro 2012 reaching the semi-final stage, Jonathan Day takes a look at some of the more unknown players who have left an impression on the tournament and put themselves in many clubs shop window. (more…)
Having been given the honour to submit reviews, I thought I would wait for the inevitable before chipping in. Whilst, England were well organised and credit to Uncle Roy for that, the gulf in technical class was almost painful not just last night but for vast tracts of the three group games. It is difficult to know where to go next as the old guard move on there seems little to replace it. As a Saints fan, you would expect me to highlight Oxlade C and Wilshere is class but then I start to struggle a bit. I was in a London cab on Saturday and the driver, an Arsenal fan, said Saints are welcome to have Walcott back. What does that say when after being in the England team for some years now even his own supporters doubt his ability to push on.
In real terms, England performed at about their level – last eight – whilst showing that the four semi finalists are head and shoulders ahead. Really worrying was the view of many that England were technically outplayed by the Italians but outmuscled too. Still there was one happy man last night. Ashley, the nasty vicar from Emmerdale, was delighted to find that overnight he is now only the third most reviled Ashley in England….
As England crush the Swedes (ok well it wasn’t exactly a crushing) the pod team take a look back at England’s performance, ask whether Steven Gerrard really is playing that well and what chance England have against Ukraine. All that and more…