Have West Brom finally thrown away the yo-yo?


Before I begin can I just say a happy new year to all you football lovers. Without you guys reading our ramblings we wouldn’t be able to function…so thankyou!

As I sit here watching West Brom against Man Utd, still slightly inebriated from the New Year excursions, I wonder if West Brom have finally found the right style of football to stay in the country’s top divison? -read on>

David Beckham – The Legacy


A teary eyed man stands in front of a 12,000 strong audience receiving a 2 minute standing ovation after receiving a lifetime achievement award for his sport. A man who is greatly admired and idolised, a man who has been at the top of his profession for some time. That man is David Beckham.

Some may be thinking how can a man of just 35 years be given a lifetime achievement award? The award previously has been given to the likes of Pele, Mohammed Ali and Sir Bobby Robson, people who have spent their whole lives in their chosen sport and taking that sport forward in many ways. How can a man of so few years in comparison be standing alongside them? Well I believe it is down to what people can see in the future. The foundations are already set but David, in the future, can change the face of football and sport as a whole. -read on>

Newcastle and the Managerial Circus


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With Newcastle United sitting nicely in mid table after 16 games, now ex-manager Chris Hughton might have thought “I’ve done a good job here” after big wins against Aston villa and Sunderland as well as decent results against Chelsea and Arsenal. But owner Mike Ashley had seemingly different ideas.

Two seasons ago the unthinkable happened for Newcastle; they were relegated. After a long hard season with former club heroes and ex-managers trying to keep them afloat, a final day 1-0 defeat to Aston Villa saw the Toon Army relegated for the first time in 16 years. But had the writing been on the wall for a while?

During the five year reign of Sir Bobby Robson, between 1999 and 2004, Newcastle finally started to fulfil their potential. A Premier League high finish of third seemed to finally start paying back the fans of the club who had been so famously loyal. But at the start of the 2004-2005 season, the Magpies had a couple of poor results and the club legend and fans favourite was forced out in just August of that season. All of this after taking Newcastle to the Champions league and F.A. Cup final. This was surely the beginning of Newcastle’s downfall.  

-read on>

Premier League vs La Liga


Premier League vs La Liga

David Villa Celebrates for Barcelona - sourced from www4.pictures.zimbio.com

In a week that saw every premier league club score in one weekend for the first time, and also one of the greatest team performances of all time from Barcelona, which is the stronger and more exciting league?

With some of the world’s greatest players no longer opting for the premier league and looking for clubs in other countries, is the English top division losing its appeal? In the past the top flight in England has boasted some of the greatest players ever to grace the field of play, names such as Ronaldo, Bergkamp, Overmars, and Cantona are just a few. But now, even though money seems no option for most of the big clubs in the premier league, big stars seem to go elsewhere.

The warm shores and attractive football of the Spanish La Liga seems to be the preferred destination for many of the world’s stars. David Villa is the most notable name to shun the premier league, opting to stay in his native Spain with Barcelona and turning down lots of offers on the table from English clubs, and after Monday night’s performance in El clasico few could blame him.

The performance of Barcelona in that game was one of the greatest team performances La Liga and the world has ever seen. The intricate passing and fluent skill of the Barcelona players blew Real Madrid away, as it would have done all teams. The performance stemmed from some of the world’s greatest players, Messi, Iniesta, Xavi and Villa. However, all of the Barca players can play the game with ease and quality.

The Spanish game is based on skill, quick short passing and fluency and you will see that in all the teams in the Spanish top division. It may be slow at times and some might say boring, but for true lovers of the game the precision, pure talent and vision on show is a joy to watch. The passing at times is a thing of beauty, and not just from the top teams such as Barcelona, Real Madrid and Valencia, lower sides like Hercules, Sporting Gijon, and Levante play the game of football with the same ethos. You will never see a Spanish team play “ugly” football. But at times this want for perfection can become painfully slow and boring with neither side taking hold of a game. read on

Ian Holloway-No longer the managerial class clown


Ian Holloway - sourced from http://i.dailymail.co.uk

Say the name Ian Holloway a year or so ago and conversations of hilarious post match interviews and talk of the class clown would be all you would hear.

How much can change in a year of football.

Say it now and a different man will be discussed. A man of seriousness and passion, positivity and opinions. A man who is greatly admired not laughed at.

Starting his managerial career at his home team of Bristol Rovers (as player manager at first), he was always going o be a hit. He played there for most of his professional career and was a fans favourite. After a successful 5 year stint there, with a win percentage of 36% in 247 games and getting them to the play offs, he thought it was time to move on and another of his old teams came calling. He had spent 5 years playing for Queens Park Rangers, and was challenged, half way through the 00-01 season, with trying to keep the club in the old First Division. He failed to do so but, unlike many modern managers, was kept on for the following year to try and rebuild the club. In doing this I believe he won many of the fans hearts with his never say die attitude and churpy exterior. He eventually got the club promoted again in 2004 and, with even more hard work, finished a very respectable 11th that season. Many people in the game were starting to take note of Holloway. His post match interviews started to draw fans of other clubs to televisions and also to youtube. His most famous surely being the “a win is like a bird” speech after a hard fought messy 1 goal win. Holloway was so much more than just a joker but not many could see past the comical remarks as ,to date, he had no real major managerial honours (or so it seemed to the premier league fans who would watch his interviews). However a few football league clubs in a similar position to Q.P.R’s were starting to take note of Holloway’s hard work and in February of 2006 he was sent on “Gardening leave” by the Queens park rangers board, as he was being increasingly linked with the vacant managerial position at a club he would later manage, Leicester City. Those rumours were never going to help the progression of the club and a difficult season ended in a 21st place finish and a loss of respect for Holloway. -read on>

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