Arsène Wenger’s revival at Arsenal will take time

February 27, 2010

“Every night inside the Revival Centre, patients offer up thanks to Arsenal Football Club, who have brought funds and hope to a blighted region. With 2,000 treated last year, many children now survive. Some don’t. The last request of a 15-year-old terminally ill girl was that she be buried in her beloved Arsenal top.” (Telegraph – Henry Winter)


The luxuries of being a Young British Manager

February 27, 2010

“When Mark Hughes left Manchester City back in December the English football media went into head-shaking overdrive. Don’t these foreign owners know that managers need time? And Hughes’ record certainly wasn’t bad, was it? OK, he went seven League games without a win, but he did match Wigan’s achievement of beating Chelsea, you know.” (WSC)


Oranje’s Opportunistic Wing

February 27, 2010

“Eljero Elia is a tricky wing player who can take advantage of the slightest leeway from a defender and turn it into a goal-scoring opportunity — making something from nothing. After just five games with the Dutch national team, he may already have snatched a spot in its World Cup squad.” (NYT)


Juan Sebastian Veron looks to finish his career on a high

February 27, 2010

“Everything Barcelona’s Lionel Messi touched at club level in 2009 may have turned to gold but Juan Sebastian Veron wasn’t too far behind his countryman, leading Estudiantes to the Libertadores Cup and retaining his personal crown as South America’s footballer of the year.” (World Soccer)


Notts County: The Long View

February 26, 2010


“Notts County might not be a name that sets the pulses of football fans around the world pulsing. It doesn’t even do that for most of the city of Nottingham, never mind the rest of planet football. In recent decades County has been comprehensively outshone by its near rivals just across the River Trent at Nottingham Forest.” (Pitch Invasion)


Football clubs in administration: Maps and Stats

February 26, 2010

Attempting to make sense of the financial state of English football. It’s almost eight years since the ITV digital collapse brought chaos and financial meltdown to the lower leagues. By pulling out of their deal to pay £315million over three years for the right to screen fixtures such as Chesterfield vs Barnet they provided us with some great anecdotes (heard the one about the Tuesday night match where it would have been cheaper to drive every viewer to the ground in a limo, put them up in a hotel and give them £500 rather than pay the costs of televising the game?) and the perfect bogeyman to blame for all the problems at England’s provincial football clubs.” (This is Pop)


Old Firm frenzy eclipses other derbies

February 26, 2010

“Such is the hysteria that engulfs Glasgow ahead of Old Firm derbies, even dogs on the street have a view on who’s going to win. On Sunday, Rangers play Celtic in front of 50,000 emotionally-frazzled fans at Ibrox. Countless more will be viewing and listening at home; while others, unable to watch, pace the room until the madness of the derby of derbies is over.” (BBC)