EPL Talk Archives for January 2007

Name to Remember: Charlie Sheringham

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Some of you may know that former England striker Teddy Sheringham was released by West Ham United at the end of this past season. The 41-year-old is now a free agent after his contract expired. But how many of you know that Teddy's son, Charlie, is currently Stateside playing for Crystal Palace USA?

Crystal Palace USA, based in Baltimore, plays in the USL.

Web Entrepreneurs Creating Solutions for Footy Fans

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The Internet has transformed the way fans experience football/soccer online, but we're still in the very early stages of the technology. What we need now more than ever are imaginative people who can take the technology and develop new, creative ideas.

Two such people are Chris from footy247.co.uk and Matt from footypod.co.uk.
FootyPod is a novel idea.

Unlikely Entertainment Network Wins EPL TV Rights

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Here in the States, we've gotten accustomed to watching the English Premier League on Fox Soccer Channel and Setanta Sports. For those readers in the UK, it'll be Sky Sports and Setanta starting in August. Elsewhere in the world, ESPN provides many football fans in Asia and Australasia with their Premier League content.

But in the Middle East and North Africa, there's an unlikely network that holds the TV rights for the next three seasons: SHOWTIME.

Liverpool's New 07/08 Away Shirts (Black & White)

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Out of all of the new shirts coming out this summer for Premiership teams, there's been one club where there has been the most speculation and controversy. That team is Liverpool FC, where we have seen countless images and sketches purporting to be the real thing.

Now, finally, we can reveal the new official Liverpool away shirts for the 2007/2008 seasons.

Memories of West Bromwich Albion & The Hawthorns

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Congratulations to Derby County on being promoted to the English Premier League after beating West Bromwich Albion 1-0 today at Wembley. While not a scintillating match, Derby was yet again impressive in the way they defended a lead and prevented West Brom from hitting the back of the net. Their defense should especially be commended.

I have fond memories of West Brom.

Rodney Marsh Interview

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Episode 68 of the EPL Talk Podcast features an exclusive interview with Rodney Marsh, the former England, Tampa Bay Rowdies, QPR, Man City and Fulham wizard (as well as a former pundit for Sky Sports and TalkSport).

Subscribe to the EPL Talk Podcast today via iTunes to make sure you don't miss this episode and all of the ones that are coming up in the next several weeks featuring other celebrities.

New Birmingham City 07/08 Home Shirt

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The seventies are back in style. That's according to Premier League new boys, Birmingham City, who recently unveiled their new home shirt for the 2007/2008 season (pictured). Instead of creating a more modern design (such as Manchester City's new home shirt), they've gone back to the past.

Their new 07/08 shirt is very similar to the ones they wore from 1971 to 1976 (see designs here).

New Liverpool 07/08 Away Shirts

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Liverpool and Adidas have craftly come up with a marketing idea that will get many Reds fans anxious about their new kits this year. They've created a countdown clock showing the amount of time until the new 07/08 Liverpool away and third kits are released.

View the countdown clock and glimpses of the shirt here.

The glimpses are very slight.

New Sunderland Away Shirt, 2007/2008

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Sunderland has unveiled their new away strip for the 07/08 season. Sponsored by Boylesports, an Irish bookmaker, the new shirt follows the Umbro template design and is quite stylish (pictured).

Sunderland fans will be hoping the team can wear the strip for more than one season in the Premiership after their lacklustre performance the last time the Northeast club was in the Premier League.

West Brom v Derby County: Live and Online

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The football season may appear over, but there's still plenty of action within the next two weeks.

First is this Monday (Memorial Day) for the Coca-Cola Championship clash between Derby County and West Bromwich Albion (9am ET, Setanta). The match will decide which will be the third team to be promoted to the Premier League.

If you've never had a chance to watch a Championship match before, this one is a must-see.

The Fear in Football

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It's something that most Premier League clubs have and it's ruining the game. It's called The Fear.

I brought up the topic last night when I interviewed Rodney Marsh for this Monday's EPL Talk Podcast episode. Why is four-five-one more prevalent now than ever before? Why has the standard of football, as a whole, dropped? Why do we see far fewer matches with free-flowing football that excites and gets us up off the couch?

Changes Needed for Champions League Tournament

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By John Nicholson

The Champions League has produced some classic, top quality games this season, it always does, but like the F.A Cup, it produced a poor final that left me feeling that neither side really deserved to win it and wondering whether it is time for a change to the whole format of the competition.

The Champions League is based on a false premise.

Constructive Criticism of Liverpool in CL Final

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Episode two of the EPL Talk Show is now live with guest co-host John Nicholson from Football 365. The show was recorded live just hours after the conclusion of the Champions League Final.

Thanks to everyone who participated in the live show. If you missed it, download the podcast episode here. Or, better yet, subscribe to the podcast here so you don't miss a single episode.

Coming Soon: An Interview with Rodney Marsh

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EPL Talk will be interviewing Rodney Marsh this week. If you have any questions you'd like me to ask the NASL and QPR legend, post them here or e-mail them to thegaffer[at]epltalk[dot]com.

Catch the interview with Marsh this Monday on the EPL Talk Podcast.

EPL Talk Show: Champions League Final Special

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Don't forget to listen to tonight's live episode of the EPL Talk Show (10pm ET, 7pm PT, 3am GMT) where we'll discuss the Champions League Final and chat with guest co-host John Nicholson from Football 365.

Here's how you can listen in and participate during the live show:

1. Visit talkshoe.com and click on the "Sign Up" button
2.

Aston Villa Restores Holte Hotel to its Former Glory

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In the next few weeks, Aston Villa will reopen a part of its history when the Holte Hotel restoration is completed outside Villa Park.

The Victorian building, which dates back to the 19th century, used to feature 10 bedrooms, its own 400 capacity music hall, billiard rooms and two bowling greens. The hotel, essentially a late Victorian pub, was located adjacent to Villa Park, one of the most historic stadiums in England.

How Much Premier League Clubs Earn from Sponsorship Deals

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While we all know that Manchester United finished at the top of the Premier League table this season, how do the top 20 teams compare in the financial league table? How much money are the teams pulling in from their kit manufacturer? And who's getting the most money from their main club sponsor?

Here's the league table of how much money the top 20 are getting from their sponsors (thanks to superb research by PurelyManCity):


What's surprising to me in the above chart is the relatively small amount of money, in comparison, the Merseyside clubs are getting.

News From Around The World of Football

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Here are a few articles from this past weekend that were of interest to me and that you will probably find interesting too:
  • An excellent article in The Times from the man who is on top of his game, Gabriele Marcotti. This time Gab talks to Pele at a recent GolTV press conference. Topics include what impact Beckham may have on America and whether soccer fans in the States know their sport or not.

Interview with JP Dellacamera

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This week's episode of the EPL Talk Podcast features an exclusive interview with legendary U.S. soccer commentator JP Dellacamera.

Dellacamera previews this week's Champions League Final (where he'll be hosting the pre-game show starting at 2pm ET on ESPN2 on Wednesday). During the podcast interview, we take a walk down memory lane and get his thoughts on how big indoor soccer was in America, his most memorable moments as a soccer commentator, what is was like working the 1999 Champions League final when Man United overcame the odds and won it 2-1 at the end, and much more.

Reviews of Joost, Football Focus & Inside Sport

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I had the opportunity today to test out Joost, a new web site that's in beta from the creators of Skype.

Joost is essentially a network of TV channels online. Rather than live programming, the web site offers some of the best recorded shows from MTV, CNN, Comedy Central, Adult Swim and other networks. The interface and quality of streaming content is extremely cutting edge, taking control of your desktop rather than playing through a browser.

Premier League Drops 'Premiership' Name in UK

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Blink and you may have missed it, but this past weekend the English Premier League announced that it officially changed the name of its league from the Barclays Premiership to Barclays Premier League.

Previously, the official names used was Barclays Premiership (in the UK) and Barclays Premier League (outside the UK). Now, the EPL has decided to adopt one name worldwide, the Barclays Premier League.

Introducing Major League Soccer Talk

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With the Premiership season over, many of us (myself included) are craving more soccer/football. The perfect antidote is Spain's La Liga for a few more weeks, but don't overlook Major League Soccer, which has been revitalized this summer with the entry of Toronto FC and their boisterous fans and the pending arrival of David Beckham.

To follow all of the action, reader Kartik Krishnaiyer has launched a new sister site named Major League Soccer Talk, which features a blog and will, in the coming weeks, feature a podcast focused on MLS and US soccer.

Episode 2 of the EPL Talk Show This Wednesday

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The second episode of the EPL Talk Show has been scheduled and will air live over the Internet on Wednesday, May 23rd (the night of the Champions League Final) at 10pm ET (7pm PT, 3am GMT).

I'll be joined by guest co-host John Nicholson (pictured) from Football 365 fame and author of the book Footy Rocks.

Fox Soccer Channel Rated Best Quality by Fans

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Soccer fans have rated Fox Soccer Channel as the number one network for quality soccer programming. That's according to the latest poll by EPL Talk.














Thirty four percent of the fans chose Fox Soccer Channel, while Setanta Sports was close behind with 28% of the vote.

Football Fans Prepare for FA Cup Final in Kenya

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While you're watching the FA Cup Final today wherever you are in the world, spare a thought for the thousands of football fans watching the final from Kenya.

The rise of the EPL in that country has created "Premier League Bars," passion that has degenerated into fighting and die-hard fans, including women, who will be wearing the colors of the FA Cup finalists today.

Mailbag: Tim Howard Loan Deal & Euro Leagues

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In the past week, I received many excellent e-mails, two of which I thought I'd share with you. The first is a question and the second is a statement. Feel free to respond to these two points by clicking the 'comments' link near the bottom of this article and share your knowledge of the game with the rest of the readers.

Nathan Jacobs:

Financially the Premier League has evolved to a league of tiers, the upper echelon top 4, the second tier and the also rans.

Best Match of the 2006/2007 Premiership Season

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What was your favorite match of the entire 06/07 EPL season? Reader Damir Selimovic submitted this story.
West Ham United 3 v 4 Tottenham Hotspur
Upton Park; March 4, 2007
If you are searching for a game to simplify the EPL, to really understand why it's one of the favorites among all the rest of the leagues in the world, well this game stood out from the rest.

Chelsea Adds Third Friendly to U.S. Tour

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Chelsea will play Club America at Stanford Stadium on July 14 at 6pm PT. The match will be the first of Chelsea's three friendlies scheduled this summer in the United States. The second is against Suwon Bluewings on July 17, while the third is against the LA Galaxy on July 21.

Stanford Stadium is located in Palo Alta, California. Club America is one of the top teams from Mexico.

Toronto Tickets to Aston Villa Friendly Cause a Stir

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Reader Neil Russell sent me an irate email this morning about the price that Toronto FC is charging for tickets to the Aston Villa friendly on July 25. I don't blame him.

The cheapest ticket to the match is CA $110, which is $100 US. In comparison, I can buy a ticket to this weekend's Toronto match against DC United for $54 US and that's price level 2 (presumably the cheaper tickets are already sold out).

Romance of FA Cup Will Officially Die Next Season

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While the preparation and hype build for this Saturday's first FA Cup Final at the new Wembley, my message to Chelsea and Manchester United fans is to enjoy it while you can. I don't think either team will put much emphasis on the tournament next year.

We saw this year how competing for four trophies can ruin a team. Chelsea definitely ran out of gas during the past few months which was also hampered by injuries.

New York Times Journey to Emirates Stadium

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While the EPL continues to expand its coverage around the world, it's also having a positive impact on the amount of tourists heading to England to watch matches in person.

Take, for example, The New York Times. The newspaper is embracing the latest technology to provide readers with more than just words. For example, Times travel writer Henry Fountain recently took a weekend trip with his son to watch Arsenal v West Ham and a Championship match featuring Southend against Colchester United.

Chelsea v Man United, FA Cup Final: Live & Online

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If you're searching for a way to experience Saturday's FA Cup Final match between Manchester United and Chelsea online, join the EPL Talk Chat hosted by BC John.

We'll have Chelsea, Manchester United and neutral fans from around the world chatting in real-time about the final. We'll also be able to tip you off regarding Man Utd v Chelsea radio coverage and how to listen live (depending on what part of the world you live in).

General Electric Eyeing English Premier League

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If you haven't noticed already, more major U.S. investors are getting giddy over the English Premier League. Dazzled by the opportunity to make enormous fortunes by increasing revenues for a global brand, GE is the latest to have caught the bug. Yes, General Electric.

According to ThisIsMoney.co.uk, GE hopes to make one or two major takeovers in England or on the Continent.

Interview with Peter Brown from Divers & Cheats

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The latest episode of the EPL Talk Podcast features an interview with Peter Brown, co-host of the Divers & Cheats Podcast.

Peter discusses a host of topics including:
  • Why California seems to be a mecca for soccer coverage in the United States both on TV and radio/internet radio
  • Who's the worst diver: Robben or Ronaldo
  • The best and worst of football commentators
  • The lack of decent movies on the topic of football
  • Whether there's room for a football analysis show that goes deeper into topics at Fox Soccer Channel
  • And much more.

Aston Villa Preseason Tour Given the Green Light

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Aston Villa and soccer fans in the States can give a huge sigh of relief knowing that the North American tour will happen now that Villa didn't get selected as the recipient of the Fair Play Award from UEFA, which would have meant their North American pre-season friendlies being postponed or cancelled.

Villa will play Toronto FC on July 25 and Columbus on July 28.

2006/2007 Predictions Revisited

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Now that the Premiership season is over, it's time to take a look back to see how my predictions faired and how they compared with the predictions from, you, the readers.

My predictions (final position shown in parenthesis):

1. Arsenal (4th)
2. Chelsea (2nd)
3. Liverpool (3rd)
4. Tottenham Hotspur (5th)
5. Manchester United (1st)
6.

FC Walker Lifts EPL Talk Fantasy League Trophy

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The end of the 2006/2007 Premiership season also concludes the first-ever EPL Talk Fantasy League. Out of the 80 contestants, here's the final top 10:

1. FC Walker, Steve Thielman, 2102 pts
2. Foolish FC, Mark Aegerter, 2061
3. FC Bubd, Jeff Mensch, 2033
4.

Tokyo Toffeeman Wins EPL Talk Prediction League

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In a very tight finish at the top, only ten points seperated first place Tokyo Toffeeman from second place Lech Poznan in the first-ever EPL Talk Predictions League. The final top ten (out of the 19 total contestants) was:

1. Tokyo Toffeeman, 1185 pts
2. Lech Poznan, 1175
3. The Gaffer, 990*
4.

Manchester City Unveils New 07/08 Home Shirt

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Manchester City today unveiled its new home shirt for the 2007/2008 Premier League season. Designed by manufacturer Le Coq Sportif, the design represents the most radical departure in a design of a football shirt for a Premiership club so far.

The new shirt designs revealed thus far have been more predictable (Spurs, Everton, Newcastle, Blackburn, Bolton and Man United).

Changes at EPL Talk This Summer

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It's hard to believe the season is over. Sure, there are the finals of the FA Cup and Champions League to look forward to followed by pre-season friendlies (some of them in the States). But our Saturdays and Sundays won't be the same until August 11th when the Premier League returns.

Yes, we all deserve a break (the players and clubs included) so we can recharge our batteries and not get burned out from soccer 365 days a year.

Finale to Premiership Season is a Classic to Remember

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The final day of the Premier League season can best be summed up by the five minutes of added time at Bramall Lane with Wigan Athletic leading 2-1 against Sheffield United.
For those of us who were on the EPL Talk Chat, we had the pleasure of hearing the passion and excitement from Jeff Stelling on the Gillette Soccer Saturday show from SkySports (thanks to Lemon, an EPL Talk fan).

Remarkable Web sites for Soccer Fans

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On today's EPL Talk Show, we're discussing several remarkable football web sites for you to seek out. Here are links to many of them plus some bonus ones thrown in.
  • The Global Game
  • Roberto Carlos
  • Euro 2004 Tactical Briefing
  • The Political Economy of Football
  • Footy Flash

Feel free to suggest your favorite football web sites that you feel are unique.

Tell Us What You Thought of the EPL Talk Show

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If you attended the May 12th episode of the EPL Talk Show, please take a couple of minutes and answer a brief nine question survey so we can learn what you thought about the show and how it can be improved in the future.

Take the survey now.

Thanks in advance for sharing your honest feedback.

Aston Villa's North American Tour On Hold

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Plans for Aston Villa's North American tour this July may be rescheduled or postponed depending on whether UEFA awards Villa the Fair Play Award and thus entry into next season's UEFA Cup.

The Fair Play Award is given to teams who display positive play, crowd behaviour and respect for referees. If awarded to Aston Villa, Martin O'Neill's side will play their UEFA Cup first round qualifying matches on July 19 and July 24 or 25, while the second round qualifying matches would be on July 31 or August 1 and August 7 or August 8.

Middlesbrough Unveils New Crest

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Last week it was Aston Villa updating its crest. This week it's Middlesbrough. The northeast club has decided to follow a similar tactic to Villa by unveiling a radically different logo that plays up the team's proud history.

While I liked Aston Villa's new crest, I'm not won over by Boro's new one. To me, the new Boro crest looks more like a crest you'd see on a blazer of a public school in England than a football shirt.

Spurs Unveil Four New 07/08 Shirts

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Tottenham Hotspur has unveiled their new shirts for the 07/08 season. But in a move that's bound to irate many Spurs fans, the club has released four different jerseys, one of which is a special 125th anniversary shirt (click for larger image).

Designed by Puma, the new shirts are white (home), yellow (away), dark blue/grey (third) and half white/half light blue (anniversary shirt).

EPL Talk Show: Everything You Need to Know

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Tomorrow sees the debut of the EPL Talk Show, an interactive football talk-show available live via the Internet. It'll begin precisely at Noon ET (9am PT, 5pm UK time), so be sure to log on when the "doors open" at 11:45am ET on May 12. More details about how to register and the steps you need to take can be found here.

Some of the topics we'll discuss on the show include:
  • Has the English Premier League reached its peak in the US?

Is Alex Ferguson A Nut?

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One of the EPL Talk visitors, Charles Kerr, has emailed an excellent question about English Premier League managers. Rather than answer the question myself, I thought I'd let you, the reader, review it and offer your own expertise by answering the question (just click on the 'comments' link below).

Here's the email and the question:

I'm a new, but passionately rabid, fan of the EPL and Championship League and as I become immersed in the sport I have question that seem difficult to google answers for.

Aston Villa Extends North American Tour to Columbus

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Aston Villa has announced the second match of its North American tour. Villa is scheduled to play against Columbus Crew in a friendly on Saturday, July 28 at the Columbus Crew stadium. Since the match will be on a Saturday night, it's likely that it may be televised.

The match may be the closest that Aston Villa will get to a friendly near Randy Lerner's Cleveland Browns stadium.

Preseason Friendlies for Premiership Clubs

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It's the time of the year when the Premiership clubs begin announcing dates for their preseason friendlies. In the United States, of course, we're keeping our eyes out for matches involving English teams coming here. But, so far, the majority of teams are focusing their efforts on the Far East in lieu of the States.

Previously, EPL Talk revealed that it's very unlikely that Man United will tour America this summer.

John Nicholson: Wide Awake In America

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By John Nicholson

Palm Springs, for a pallid white kid from the industrial wastelands of the north east of England is about as close to Eden as I'm likely to get. As I write its 90 degrees in the shade, the pool at the villas I'm staying at is blue and inviting and the beers are colder than a witch's tit. I could get used to this way of life, especially with $2 to the £1 making me feel unreasonably rich.

Man United v West Ham: Live and Online

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If you're searching for a way to experience Sunday's Premiership match between Manchester United and West Ham online, join the EPL Talk Chat hosted by bcjohn.

We'll have Man Utd, Hammers and neutral fans from around the world chatting in real-time about the final match of the season. We'll also be able to tip you off regarding Man United v West Ham United radio coverage and how to listen live (depending on what part of the world you live in).

Man United v Chelsea: A Visit to Old Trafford

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Today is a convenient time to wrap up my articles about the EPL Talk Tour that I took in November. The tour took me to England for five matches in 10 days, where I reported my experiences via the blog, podcast and Flickr account.

The last day of my journey was to Old Trafford to see Manchester United against Chelsea.

It's incredible to think how much has happened since that 1-1 match and today.

Interview with MyFootballClub.co.uk

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The May 7th episode of the EPL Talk Podcast features an exclusive interview with Tim Glynne-Jones of MyFootballClub.co.uk.
What is My Football Club, you may ask? And why should you care? I've come across several hundred soccer web sites in the past 12 months and MyFootballClub is honestly the most original and revolutionary site I've seen.

Aston Villa to Play Toronto FC in Preseason Friendly

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Toronto FC announced today that the club will play Aston Villa in a preseason friendly on Wednesday, July 25 at BMO Field in Toronto, Canada.

Villa is expected to announce more preseason friendlies in the coming weeks, which will be played in the United States.

If you're planning on going to the Villa friendly, please contact me at thegaffer[at]epltalk[dot]com.

TV Schedule Announced for Final EPL Sunday

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The TV schedule has been announced for the final matches of the Premiership season. Fox Soccer Channel will show the Manchester United against West Ham United match, while Setanta Sports will show Portsmouth v Arsenal.

The schedule is as follows:
  • Sheffield United v Wigan Athletic (Setanta Xtra, 10am ET)
  • Portsmouth v Arsenal (Setanta Sports, 10am ET)
  • Manchester United v West Ham United (Fox Soccer Channel, 10am ET)
  • Blackburn Rovers v Reading (Fox Soccer Channel, 12:30pm ET)
  • Chelsea v Everton (Fox Soccer Channel, 2:30pm ET)

After the Manchester United against West Ham United, the Red Devils will be presented with the Premier League trophy.

Still Lots to Play For in the English Premier League

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We're now into the final week of a long but memorable Premier League season. While we know Manchester United is champions, there's still much to play for this week. And it's no surprise that the Premiership revolution will be televised. Here's the rundown from EPL Talk:

Monday: Charlton versus Spurs (Fox Soccer Channel, 3pm ET)
If Alan Pardew's Charlton side loses this pivotal match, the club south of London's Thames River will be relegated to the Championship.

Get Ready for a New Soccer Show

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This Saturday, the first interactive soccer radio show of its kind will debut with star guests, prizes and unique football topics. It's the inaugural episode of the EPL Talk Show, which you can participate in live wherever you live in the world beginning at Noon ET.

Here's how you can listen in and participate during the live show:
  1. Visit talkshoe.

Manchester United: Champions of England

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Chelsea Football Club and its race to catch up with Manchester United throughout the entire Premiership season paid its toll this evening by tieing Arsenal 1-1 and thus handing the title to Sir Alex Ferguson's side.

Yet again, Chelsea's performance was below average in what must be one of the worst weeks in recent memory for Chelsea fans (gifting the trophy to United after drawing 2-2 against Bolton, losing to Liverpool in the Champions League semi-final again, and drawing Arsenal today).

Retro Football Shirts

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I came across a new site recently called RetroFootballShirts.co.uk that you may want to check out. The site features irreverant shirt designs for many famous football clubs and legends (such as Peter Osgood and Bill Shankly).

No shipping is available to the United States right now, but if you're in Europe, the company ships to a long list of countries (detailed on homepage, right column).

Around the World of Football

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  • Boy, did Manchester United look tired today? Despite their lack of energy and Manchester City's thug tactics, their one-nil one piles the pressure on Chelsea tomorrow at the Emirates. A draw or a win by Arsenal and the Premiership title will be handed to Man United at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.

  • Here's an interesting look at Stan Kroenke, the Arsenal investor, at this San Diego newspaper site.

Interview with Reading's Bobby Convey

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BBC Radio Berkshire featured an interview with U.S. left winger Bobby Convey last night. Convey, who has been injured most of the season for Reading,

Listen to the interview here.

Thanks to Tokyo Toffeeman for the link.

Live Commentary of Aston Villa v Sheffield United

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This week has been the busiest ever for the EPL Talk Blog based on the number of visitors to just this one section of EPL Talk. This past Wednesday, we had more than 17,000 unique visitors. Thursday was more than 12,000 and so on.

Of course, the blog is just one part of the whole EPL Talk experience. One area that's gaining much popularity is the EPL Talk Chat, hosted by the gracious BCjohn each weekend.

Breaking News: Premier League Sues YouTube

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This Premier League filed a lawsuit this afternoon against YouTube in a New York court alleging that "[YouTube] encourages massive copyright infringment on its Web site to generate public attention and boost traffic. This has resulted in the loss of valuable content."
The lawsuit goes on to say that the "Defendants, which own and operate the Web site YouTube.

New Lettering and Numbering Style for EPL Shirts

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An image of the new lettering and numbering style for the 07/08 Premiership shirts has surfaced.

The shirt on the right (click to see a larger version) incorporates the new EPL logo and new numbering/lettering font that's supposed to be easier to read than the current one. More detail about the new style can be found here.

What do you think of it?

Steve McManaman And Angus Scott Join Setanta

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Setanta's team of broadcasters for next season's Premiership coverage is starting to come together nicely. Setanta will feature:
  • Angus Scott. Former ITV Sport presenter.
  • Steve McManaman: The former Liverpool and Real Madrid player has worked with ITV and ESPN Star as a match analyst.

Latest Standings in EPL Talk Fantasy Leagues

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The race for the Premiership title and Champions League trophy is nearing its end, but many EPL Talk readers are also keeping a close eye on the races in the EPL Talk fantasy leagues.

The winner of each league will receive a prize (to be determined) from EPL Talk.

Here are the current top 10 standings as of today:

Premier League Fantasy League

1.

Fulham v Liverpool: Live & Online

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If you're searching for a way to experience Saturday's Premiership match between Fulham v Liverpool online, join the EPL Talk Chat hosted by bcjohn.

We'll have Fulham, Liverpool and neutral fans from around the world chatting in real-time about the penultimate Premiership match. We'll also be able to tip you off regarding Fulham v Liverpool radio coverage and how to listen live (depending on what part of the world you live in).

West Ham v Bolton: Live & Online

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If you're searching for a way to experience Saturday's Premiership match between West Ham United and Bolton Wanderers online, join the EPL Talk Chat hosted by bcjohn.

We'll have West Ham, Bolton and neutral fans from around the world chatting in real-time about the huge relegation dogfight for the Hammers. We'll also be able to tip you off regarding West Ham v Bolton radio coverage and how to listen live (depending on what part of the world you live in).

Aston Villa v Sheffield United: Live & Online

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If you're searching for a way to experience Saturday's Premiership match between Villa and Sheff United online, join the EPL Talk Chat hosted by bcjohn.

We'll have Villa, Blades and neutral fans from around the world chatting in real-time about the huge relegation dogfight match for Sheffield. We'll also be able to tip you off regarding Villa v Sheff Utd radio coverage and how to listen live (depending on what part of the world you live in).

Arsenal v Chelsea: Live & Online

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If you're searching for a way to experience Saturday's Premiership match between Arsenal v Chelsea online, join the EPL Talk Chat hosted by bcjohn.

We'll have Gunners, Blues and neutral fans from around the world chatting in real-time about the huge London derby. We'll also be able to tip you off regarding Arsenal and Chelsea radio coverage and how to listen live (depending on what part of the world you live in).

New Liverpool 07/08 Home & Away Shirts

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We have no way of knowing whether this is valid or fake, but one of the EPL Talk readers has sent us the following image of the supposed Liverpool shirts for next season (pictured right).
The picture features an away jersey for Liverpool's 07/08 season and an international home shirt to be played on nights when Champions League matches would be played.

Aston Villa Unveils New Crest

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Aston Villa, owned by American businessman Randy Lerner, has unveiled a new logo for its football club (pictured right).

The new crest is quite a dramatic change for Villa. The club has adopted a retro feel to the design, which harkens back to more nostalgic period in the club's history.

Regarding the design, the star signifies the one European Cup that Villa won.

Man City v Man United: Live & Online

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If you're searching for a way to experience Saturday's Premiership match between Manchester City and Manchester United online, join the EPL Talk Chat hosted by bcjohn.

We'll have City, United and neutral fans from around the world chatting in real-time about the huge Manchester derby. We'll also be able to tip you off regarding Man City and Man Utd radio coverage and how to listen live (depending on what part of the world you live in).

New Everton 07/08 Home Shirt Revealed

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Everton Football Club today unveiled its new home jersey for the 2007/2008 Premiership season from Umbro, the kit manufacturer.

The shirt will be first worn in this Saturday's home match against Portsmouth.

The design features yellow touches near the color and neck. Overall, I think the design is well done. It's aesthetically pleasing without going over the top.

AC Milan v Man United: Live and Online

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Listen to live audio from the AC Milan against Manchester United semi-final right now for free at http://mu.tv.manutd.com/

The registration is free and takes just a minute or two before you can hear the audio.

New Liverpool 07/08 Away Shirt Revealed

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We've located a picture of Liverpool's new away shirt for the 2007/2008 season.

Whether the shirt is the new away one, or Liverpool's third shirt, we don't know yet. A preview of the shirts was posted here on March 21.

In that article, it shows an image of a black away jersey, too (which again could be the away one or the third/Champions League one).

Steve Coppell to Field Reserves in UEFA Cup

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Here are just a couple of the interesting stories that caught my eye in the past 24 hours:

  • If Reading qualifies for the UEFA Cup, Steve Coppell will play reserves in the tournament. And he isn't joking. Coppell knows where his bread is buttered and the lure of the money that can be made in the Premiership far outweighs the TV rights from the UEFA Cup and the thought of travelling across Eastern Europe on a cold Thursday night to play football.

New Tottenham Hotspur 07/08 Shirt from Puma

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On May 12th, Tottenham Hotspur will unveil the new designs for their 2007/2008 shirts including a special design in honor of their 125th anniversary next year.

However, one of the shirt designs has been leaked to the Internet. The shirt design (see right) is either the new home shirt or the 125th anniversary shirt. I reckon it's the latter.

Arsenal's Away Shirt for the 07/08 Season

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The rumors that Arsenal will be adopting a white shirt as their away kit for the 07/08 season have been circulating for weeks now. Rough designs had been posted, but it was unclear whether it was authentic or not.

Now a new image of the alleged shirt has appeared across the Internet. But is this one real or fake? You decide.

The new Arsenal away shirt is scheduled to be available on August 7th, while the new home jersey from Arsenal is scheduled to be available on July 7.

Everton's New 07/08 Home Shirt Revealed

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Everton will be officially unveiling their new home shirt on their web site May 3rd, but here's a sneak preview of it. According to the Everton web site, the shirt will be worn for the first time this Saturday when the Toffees play Portsmouth at home, the last match of the season at Goodison Park.

The shirt will officially be available on June 1st.

New Bolton Wanderers 07/08 Home Shirt

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Bolton Wanderers recently unveiled their new home shirt for the 07/08 season.

The shirt will be manufactured by Reebok once again, and features an improved design over the current shirt, I believe.

The shirt is scheduled to be available as of May 7th. Bolton's new away shirt, meanwhile, is scheduled to be released on June 7th.

New Blackburn Rovers 07/08 Home Shirt

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It's that time of the season when football clubs start pushing the new shirts for football supporters to buy. Next in the list is Blackburn Rovers, who will be staying with their manufacturer Lonsdale but will be releasing a new home and away shirt for the 07/08 season (pictured right).

The new jerseys were supposedly voted on by the Blackburn Rovers fans.

Chelsea Returns to the Days of Claudio Ranieri

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Chelsea's defeat last night in the Champions League semi-final may feel like deja vu for many Blues supporters. But not for the reasons that many of you may imagine.

Incredibly, Chelsea's fortunes have gone full circle. At the tail end of the 2004 season, Claudio Ranieri's Chelsea side lost in the semi-final of the Champions League and finished the season in second place.

The Rise of the English Premier League

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The domination by English football in Europe and around the world in the form of TV viewing is immense. If Manchester United overcome AC Milan tonight, expect more and more newcomers to football around the world becoming fans of one of the two Premiership clubs.

But it always wasn't like that, of course. To get a better understanding of how English football used to be, you have an assignment.

Joey Barton's Man City Career Near Its End

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It appears that Joey Barton may have played his last match for Manchester City this past Saturday. The fiery midfielder reportedly punched City teammate Dabo in the mouth during today's training session, and Man City has suspended Barton til the end of the season.

Barton, who missed a penalty against Aston Villa on Saturday, spoke out recently about Manchester City's season and said he wouldn't pay to watch the club play.

ITV's Redesigned Web site Gets a Thumbs Down

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ITV has launched a completely redesigned version of their website at itv.com

The British broadcaster, who owns the TV rights to show the Champions League on UK television, is supposed to have integrated a Player on the site to rival BBC's popular Player that displays some of the best audio and video. However, despite the colorful redesign of ITV's site, it's not easy to find the Player link.

EPL Talk In The News

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If you get a chance, listen to today's episode of the Soccer Shout podcast where I was the guest co-host. Phil and I discussed the past weekend's Premiership action and got into a long discussion about whether West Ham should have been deducted three points or not.

Also, EPL Talk was in the news this past Sunday when the South Florida Sun-Sentinel newspaper reporter Jeff Rusnak wrote about the inaugural EPL Talk Video Podcast.

Chelsea On a Razor's Edge for Tonight's CL Semi

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The future of Jose Mourinho's position at Chelsea hangs in the balance today dependent on whether the Blues can overcome their 1-0 aggregate at Anfield. Win on aggregate and Jose is a hero. Lose on aggregate and don't be surprised if Abramovich and Kenyon again start looking for a replacement.

One of the main factors is Jose Mourinho's decision to drop Andrei Shevchenko.