Is the League Cup Still a Worthwhile Competition?

Many clubs don’t see winning this cup as a priority.

This week the 3rd round of the League Cup took place with many of the competing sides opting to play youth or fringe players instead of putting out a full strength team – a common trend in recent years. With clubs prioritising their league form over a run in the cup, many people have began to question the necessity of the League Cup, and whether it a distraction that clubs could do without. Continue reading

Owen Hargreaves – Shrewd Business Rather Than a Gamble

Owen Hargreaves has a terrible injury record but could turn out to be good business by Man City.

Perhaps one of the shock deals of the transfer window was Man City opting to sign ex-Manchester United midfielder Owen Hargreaves, after he was told he would not be given a new contract by his former club. After signing from Bayern Munich in 2007 for £17million, Hargreaves suffered many problems with his knees, which restricted him to making only 39 appearances in four seasons with the Red Devils. Continue reading

As Top Clubs Focus On English Talent, There is a Reminder of How Overhyped Players Can Turn Out

English players playing for top Premier League clubs could benefit Capello. Source: http://realmadrid.pl/

The recent transfer window saw many young and established English players move to the top six in the Premier League. This is a stark contrast from several years ago, when there were many complaints regarding the lack of English-born players playing for top Premier League clubs, and concern as to what effect it would be having on the national team. This season has seen a shift in transfer policy however, as clubs seem willing to pay a high fee for English talent, instead of opting for an overseas alternative for a lower price, as many have in recent years. Continue reading

The Premier League Curtain Raiser – A Tactical Analysis of the Community Shield

The Community Shield is often little more than a glorified friendly, but this year’s match had an added ingredient with it being a Manchester derby. Manchester United looked determined to set the score straight at the first opportunity since their FA Cup Semi-Final defeat to their City rivals towards the end of last season. Manchester City on the other hand were keen to show that they are closing the gap between themselves and the 19 times English League Champions. Continue reading

Book Review: Behind the Curtain – Jonathan Wilson

In Behind the Curtain Jonathan Wilson takes the reader on a trip through football in Eastern Europe during communist rule, but also discusses at great length the current state of football in the former Eastern Bloc. Continue reading

Bulgaria’s Golden Generation – 1994 World Cup Finals

The story of the Bulgarian national football team in the 1994 World Cup remains one of the most remarkable stories in international football. Continue reading

Book Review: Brilliant Orange – David Winner

David Winner’s Brilliant Orange is regarded as one of the best football books of modern times. Published over ten years ago, it has been a book which I have intended to read for a while, but have never got round to reading. After several years of not reading it, I eventually started it several weeks ago, and immediately wished I read it when I originally intended. Continue reading

Book Review: The Blizzard

I first heard about The Blizzard on twitter. People were discussing how they enjoyed issue 0 and were looking forward to the release of issue 1. I wasn’t aware what they were discussing, and didn’t give it thought. After a few days, and witnessing many more discussions about it on twitter, I decided to see what the fuss was about. Continue reading

The Contrasting Transfer Policies of Newcastle and Sunderland

Newcastle and Sunderland have gone about their transfer dealings very differently

When the final whistle was blown in the 2010-11 Premier League, both Newcastle United and Sunderland – the North East’s only representatives in English football’s top flight – could draw some comparisons between their seasons. Continue reading

Goal Line Technology – Should Football Modernise To Eradicate Refereeing Errors?

Diagram of Cairos and Adidas’ Goal Line Technology

Summer is here. Sadly, with no European Championships or World Cup this summer, English football fans have to find other ways to spend their time. Whilst there are a few football tournaments available to watch – such as Copa America and the FIFA U17s World Cup – many fans will be watching other sports, namely tennis and cricket. Both of these sports have adopted technology to help eradicate poor decisions made by the umpires. International cricket has a Decision Review System (DRS), which uses several cameras to help the third umpire decide whether a decision made by the on-field umpire is correct. Similarly in tennis, Hawk-eye technology is used to show whether a ball was in or out on debatable calls made by the umpire. In football however, FIFA are yet to embrace technology that could eradicate poor decisions regarding whether the ball has crossed the goal line, despite there being several high-profile instances where incorrect decisions have been made. With many sports investing in technology to assist referees and umpires when making decisions which they are unsure of, is it time football did the same? Continue reading