Daily Archives: September 1, 2010

England Squad Announcement: Where they might play

Fabio Capello
“The announcement of the England squad for an international fixtures has become more of a media circus than ever before since the appointment of Fabio Capello. His love/hate relationship with the tabloid media is currently stuck firmly in the hate column, with The Sun leading the calls for his dismissal albeit in a rather childish and uneducated way.” (A Tactical View)


Fiorentina 1-1 Napoli: the away side’s lopsided defensive shape works rather well

“The closest thing to a ‘glamour tie’ in the first round of Serie A finished all square – 1-1 both in terms of goals and red cards. Fiorentina’s only debutant in Sinisa Mihajlovic’s first game in charge was Gaetano D’Agostino, the central playmaker who is effectively taking Stevan Jovetic’s place in Fiorentina’s 4-2-3-1 from last season. Otherwise, it was a distinctly Prandelli-esque team, with no major changes.” (Zonal Marking)

Tactics: Robinho arrival threatens Ronaldinho’s renaissance

“Right-footed, left-sided attackers are currently one of football’s most fashionable commodities (think David Villa and Robinho at the World Cup; Franck Ribéry at Bayern Munich; Nani at Manchester United), and like any self-respecting wealthy Italian man, Silvio Berlusconi has to be up with the latest trends. So he bought two. But while Robinho is hoping his transfer deadline day move to Milan will allow him to re-launch his stuttering club career, his arrival at San Siro may well turn out to be bad news for Ronaldinho.” (Football Further)

Welcome to Purgatory, Van Der Vaart!

“The universe has inverted itself. The malcontent souls go to AC Milan, while the bad souls go to Barcelona. As for those in between – the hapless sailors aboard a ship sailed by a ruthless and sinful captain, the ocean opens up its mighty mouth but refuses to swallow them whole. Rather, they float, and they float, and they float. The currents toss them to and fro, the hypnotizing rhythm of the waves lulls them into exhausted slumber until salt water filled lungs choke them awake. Van Der Vaart is one of these souls.” (futfanatico)

That La Liga stuff

“Hope you had a good summer, and can enjoy what’s left of it – or depending on your hemisphere, I hope the early spring´s all green and gambolling. The World Cup seems strangely distant, and I’ve just got back from California where I took the family on holiday and where football (I mean soccer) was never far away. I missed Real Madrid by a day in Los Angeles and then by a day again in San Francisco, but never mind because I’ll be seeing them again very soon in Anoeta. Real Sociedad´s stadium is once again host to the top flight, but I’ve just missed out on their 1-0 win over an allegedly poor Villarreal because I’m still in England, where it’s predictably blowing a gale as I write.” (ESPN)

Play Up Pegasus! The Parallel Universe Of The FA Amateur Cup

“This weekend marks the first ‘Non-League Day’, a concerted attempt to try and persuade supporters of the biggest clubs in Britain to take a step back from the thrills and spills of the Premier League and the Championship (since they have a day off anyway, on account of the weekend’s international matches) and take in the sights, sounds and – yes – smells of their local non-league club. By Premier League and Football League standards, even a relatively modest turn-out would make a great deal of difference to many non-league clubs, particularly the smaller ones, so we are throwing our full wait behind this concept and, to mark it, we’re giving over the rest of this week to non-league football, kicking off this evening by taking a look at the competition that was, for eighty years, the pinnacle of the non-league game: The FA Amateur Cup.” (twohundredpercent)

My Perfect 10: Rui Costa

“At his peak Rui Costa had the complete attacking game – he could dribble, shoot and pass brilliantly – defenders simply didn’t know how to deal with him. Add to that a tremendous footballing brain and his tendency to drift around the pitch and make things happen rather than waiting for the ball to come to him, and he was almost impossible to nullify. He was the archetypal playmaker because he was very much a team player, always looking for a pass rather than personal glory; he had an amazing ability to utterly dominate a game without finding himself in the headlines.” (FourFourTwo)