Leicester City manager Nigel Pearson backed by peers after fan with row: ‘You said what rest us want to say’

December 12, 2014

pearson_3136054b
“Nigel Pearson is one of the most measured, thoughtful managers in the country so it was a warning sign of the pressures his profession is under when even he snapped at an abusive fan, an offence that brought a Football Association charge on Thursday. The Leicester City manager remained phlegmatic when being alerted of the FA’s decision in the afternoon, just as he stayed calm earlier in the day despite the deep frustration after one of his best players this season, Kasper Schmeichel, broke a metatarsal in training. Leicester’s goalkeeper undergoes an operation today and will be out for ‘four to six weeks’, according to his manager.” Telegraph – Henry Winter


Wayne Rooney can take England’s goals record but not the glory of his predecessors

October 8, 2014

“The Sir Bobby Charlton suite is the most luxurious room in the hotel currently occupied by England at St George’s Park albeit hardly the Ritz. The Gary Lineker pitch (No 11) is, contrary to expectation, more than two six-yard boxes. Yet nowhere at England’s training base is there any room or pitch named in tribute to Jimmy Greaves, the distinguished international lying third behind Lineker and Charlton as his country’s all-time goalscorer. Greaves’s photograph does hang alongside those of Lineker and Charlton on the walls of the corridors that Wayne Rooney will walk along on this morning, heading off out to Pitch 6, the main England practice area. Rooney will soon pass the fabled trio in the record books as well as the corridor, starting with Greaves possibly this week. His elevation will stir sadness as well as admiration. Rooney can equal the maths but not the history.” Telegraph . Henry Winter


Manchester City 1 Chelsea 1: Frank Lampard comes off the bench to upset former club and save the champions

September 21, 2014

“Frank Lampard holds a special place in the Chelsea record books and in the hearts of their fans. Even when their club’s all-time leading scorer, ‘Super’ Frank Lampard, equalised for Manchester City here, Chelsea supporters continued to sing his name. He cost them two points but had given them 13 unforgettable years. Lampard will always be in credit in their ledger of loyalty. At the end of a contentious, slightly surreal encounter, Lampard walked over to thank the away fans, who waved banners and chorused his name again in return. Little sportsmanship resides in football in the cynical modern era so it was an impressive reaction by the Chelsea contingent.” Telegraph – Henry Winter


Tottenham Hotspur 0 Liverpool 3: Raheem Sterling, Steven Gerrard and Alberto Moreno secure victory

September 1, 2014

“Brendan Rodgers celebrated his 100th game in charge of Liverpool with a good win against Tottenham Hotspur and a very good joke about Raheem Sterling’s astonishing second-half miss: ‘Raheem ran into the box like Ricky Villa and finished it like Ricky Gervais.’ This was more than another day at the office for Liverpool. This was Rodgers’s side back in business. After Liverpool’s defeat at Man­chester City last Monday, a few dark clouds of doubt scurried across the Melwood skyline. But Rodgers calmly trained his players well all week, setting them up tactically to outwit Spurs and particularly expose their high-pressing tactics. Liverpool moved the ball quickly, occasionally over the top, catching Spurs out.” Telegraph – Henry Winter


Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal discovers harsh reality after Swansea loss – and there’s no quick fix

August 17, 2014

lll
“It risked being lost in all the debris of an opening-day defeat for Louis van Gaal, and amid the understandable calls for urgent reinforcements, but Manchester United’s new manager kept returning to a vital theme, namely the need for players to be ‘not only running, but also to use your brain’. Welcome to England, where physics is still one of the main sciences. Van Gaal spoke after this deserved 2-1 loss to Swansea City about players making poor choices in their decision-making, especially in the first half. He also wrote in the programme about ‘I always train in the brains and not in the legs,’ adding, most pertinently, about an issue he had noted in training that ‘a lot of players are playing intuitively but they have to think’.” Telegraph – Henry Winter

Louis van Gaal endures Manchester United debut to forget
“It is a new season with a new manager but for Manchester United fans the 2014-15 campaign began in all-too familiar fashion – a depressing home defeat. ‘Things can only get better’ and ‘King Louis is here – United are back’ was the message on some of the many scarves and T-shirts on sale outside Old Trafford on Saturday showing United’s new boss Louis van Gaal’s face as their main design feature. Sadly for the United supporters who saw their side suffer seven home league defeats last season, Swansea would prove those statements to be mostly inaccurate, for now at least.” BBC

Van Gaal needs reinforcements
“Over to you, Ed Woodward. Time is slipping away; there are 16 days left of the transfer window. Manchester United’s opening defeat to Swansea City offered almost indelible proof that the club no longer has the personnel to compete to win the Premier League. Louis van Gaal had warned that these things will take time. David Moyes, watching in a Doha TV studio, ought to have allowed himself some schadenfreude towards the executive vice-chairman who sacked him in April. Indeed, the former Old Trafford boss urged time for his successor.” ESPN


World Cup Expectations Rankings: Brazil’s over- and underachievers

July 15, 2014

Image, 738 × 415 pix
Cesare Prandelli
“Teams come to the World Cup with their own expectations. For some, just being there is enough, reaching the last 16 an almost impossible dream. For others, so exalted were their ambitions that even a quarterfinal feels like a disappointment. This is an attempt to grade teams according to how they did against their own expectations, looking both at results and at how well they played…” SI – Jonathan Wilson


World Cup 2014: Lionel Messi shines after tactical change

June 16, 2014

messi
“On the eve of the Argentina-Bosnia game, a Brazilian newspaper came up with a cruel statistic. In one World Cup game, Neymar had scored more World Cup goals than Lionel Messi had managed in his entire career. The Brazilian was leading by two to one. The little wizard has now levelled the score, and did it in style in his first ever game in Rio’s iconic Maracana stadium. His strike, which turned out to be the winner in Argentina’s 2-1 victory over Bosnia, is the moment a packed crowd will guard in their memories of Sunday’s game. It was Messi at his best, cutting in with the ball tied to his left foot, exchanging quick passes with Gonzalo Higuain and curling a shot in off the post. Without a slight deflection off a Bosnian defender the ball would probably have gone just wide, but few would complain – apart from Bosnians, and some Brazilians.” BBC

Lionel Messi lights up World Cup with stunning strike in Group F victory as Argentina triumph against Bosnia
“Messi at Maracana: what an event. This was part-homage to one of the game’s greats and part-launch of Argentina’s World Cup campaign. The two themes were inevitably intertwined as Lionel Messi embarked on his mission, using his phenomenal footballing capabilities to try to guide his country to victory in these finals that are already being hailed as one of the finest ever. The tone of the tournament has been on attacking and here it was Messi’s turn. He was short of his highest standards, short of the brilliance that has defined his Barcelona career but he still created Argentina’s first and then scored their second, giving the feeling of a special cameo being performed in front of an audience of 74,738, the majority enrapt by his work. It was astonishing to think that this was only his second ever World Cup goal in nine games.” Telegraph – Henry Winter

World Cup Tactical Analysis: Argentina 2-1 Bosnia
“In a game that was expected to be Argentina’s announcement of intent in this World Cup, the favorites met stern opposition in the form of Bosnia and Herzegovina. And though Argentina certainly did the business by walking away with the 3 points, it may have been Bosnia and Herzegovina who perhaps made the bigger statement.” Outside of the Boot

Argentina vs. Bosnia in GIFs
“Messi strikes in Argentina’s opener at the Maracanã. What else could a fan ask for? Argentina and Lionel Messi in Brazil’s greatest stadium, the Marcanã in Rio. Will Argentina be there on July 13? Maybe, maybe not, but it would start today for Argentina against talented World Cup first-timers Bosnia. Let’s look at our favorite GIFs.” Fusion (Video)


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 197 other followers