Bayern: The Invisible Giants

April 13, 2018

“Sports Burst knows exactly how it feels to be overlooked, ignored and underappreciated for its greatness. After all, it looks at its readership stats every day. Basically, the column is Bayern Munich this week. While the world was clucking and fretting over the demise of Manchester City, Barcelona and Juventus in the Champions League and oozing over Liverpool and Real Madrid, the Germans did their thang by qualifying for the final four of Europe’s top club competition, without anyone really noticing. …” BeinSports (Video)

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World Cup 2018 groups: Your complete guide to the teams

April 5, 2018

“The World Cup draw is done and dusted with England drawn against Belgium, Panama and Tunisia. Here is your guide to the eight groups for the 2018 World Cup…” Telegraph


Football and conflict: The story of FC Pristina and the Kosovo War

March 22, 2018

“Kushtrim Munishi takes a sup of beer and rests his broad shoulders against his chair. The clunk of the glass on the table as he replaces it punctuates the momentary quiet between two unmistakably trans-Atlantic pop tunes being pumped into the bar. It’s a place which isn’t deliberately themed, but it’s still been decked out in a typically Western style. In Pristina in 2018, that’s just the way things are done. …” The Set Pieces (Video)


Victory from the Jaws of Triumph: Ireland’s Euro 2012 So Far

March 22, 2018

European Championship qualifying group B was a strange one: Ireland beat Armenia who beat Slovakia who beat Russia who beat Ireland (while poor fourth-seeded Macedonia looked on and whimpered). The logical progression would have been for a match to be played out between twenty-two footballs kicking a man around the pitch. That man turned out to be Richard Dunne, and the final score was Russia 0-0 Ireland, a result you could only call miraculous if you consider Dunne to be a gift from heaven. …” Run Of Play (Oct. 2011)


Memo to Theresa May: In Premier League, Russian Roots Run Deep

March 18, 2018

“LONDON — The Russian flag has been there so long now that it hardly attracts any notice, just another familiar piece of background scenery in the global, cosmopolitan Premier League. It hangs from the upper deck of the Matthew Harding Stand at Stamford Bridge, the home of Chelsea Football Club. In its central blue band, spelled out in white block capitals, are the words ‘The Roman Empire.’ …” NY Times


Graham Potter: ‘I’ve shown there’s another path for English managers’

February 13, 2018

“‘It’s a different kind of cold,’ Graham Potter says as darkness spreads across Östersund and the temperature plummets to -20C. The inspirational manager of Östersund, who will reach the next stage of an incredible story when they host Arsenal in the first leg of their Europa League tie on Thursday, laughs when I say it’s hard to believe. I’ve felt colder on a wet February afternoon in Birmingham, not far from his old home in Solihull, than I do in this small town in remote northern Sweden. …” Guardian


Film charts groundbreaking approach of legendary manager Valeriy Lobanovskyi

January 26, 2018


“Former Dynamo Kiev and USSR manager Valeriy Lobanovskyi is the subject of a short montage by film-maker Jonny Newell. The video uses the techniques of the Soviet montage theory, linking the scientific approach of Lobanovskyi, and the type of football his famous teams played, with the Soviet ideals of collectivism at the time. Lobanovskyi managed Dynamo Kiev and the Soviet Union among others between 1973 and 2002. At the former he won both the 1975 and1986 Cup-Winners Cup, alongside the 1975 Super Cup, 12 Soviet/Ukrainian titles and nine cups. These successes were achieved through his pioneering scientific style of management, believing in the power of the collective over the individual. …” WSC (Video), Guardian: How Valeriy Lobanovskyi’s appliance of science won hearts and trophies, W – Valeriy Lobanovskyi, Football’s Greatest Managers: #7 Valeriy Lobanovskyi