Somewhere between Leeds and Manchester on the M62 I was able to truly digest my four-day jaunt
back to my native land for the third round of the Carling Cup. Working in football in the United
States is a great privilege, and in Seattle the advent of Seattle Sounders FC has been a revelation
for Major League Soccer.
The Independent reported today that Â documents have been revealed "which suggest Liverpool's
net summer spending will be locked at Â£20m until 2014â€³. This is slated to include player pay
raises and not just transfer fees. This story has also appeared on Sport.co.uk and in the Daily
Excellent news for US residents who follow the Premier League club: Hulu has added Premier
League highlights to its array of online videos and movies it has available on the popular online
The availability of goal highlights from the past weekend of matches is made available in
conjunction with Fox Soccer Channel.
Andy Lyons, co-founder of leading fanzie When Saturday Comes joins host Kartik Krishnaiyer to
discuss the following topics
- a detailed look at the history of the magazine
- the circumstances around its beginnings
- The impact of 1980s fan movements on football
- The impact of 1980s Thatcherite politics on football
-Â How the 1990 World Cup success for Sir Bobby Robson's England team brought new fans to the
- The formation of the Premier League and how it affected the magazine and supporters
-Â Content and columnists in When Saturday Comes
- The football magazine industry currently, and the push for more online content.
If you're like me, I watch so much English football on television that I sometimes forget two
things. One, how wonderful it is to actually play the game everything from the sound of the ball
hitting the back of the net to the emotions you feel when playing the game. And, two, how difficult
it actually is to play the game at a high level.
After just one month of the 2009-2010 Premier League season, ESPN2 has generated an average
viewing audience of 274,128 according to Nielsen Ratings.
The ratings are impressive thus far given the fact that no two heavyweight teams have faced each
other on ESPN2 as of yet. The first massive match-up to be aired on ESPN2 will be the October 31st
clash between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur.
When I launched EPL Talk in 2005, my initial vision for the site was that it would be highly
interactive and would embrace technology to bring English football supporters closer together. The
main feature at that time was an online chat that would be hosted every weekend so that website
visitors could chat at the same time they were watching Premier League matches, no matter where
they lived in the world.
Gary Neville thinking to himself about how crap and old he is
This time last year Manchester United were starting to put together one of the finest stretches
of defensive football ever scene in the English Premier League. But one year later, with a similar
defensive cast, they seem exposed, shaky and generally lacking around their own goal.
The missus and I were in Boston this past Saturday afternoon with some time to kill, so I
thought we'd try and find a place to catch the West Ham v Liverpool match. Our journey began in
Cambridge, around Harvard Square. Perhaps it's because the kids at thatÂ institution are too busy
planning winter break ski vacations in Austria or copying MySpace to make millions or splitting the
atom or whatnot, but there aren't too many bars in the yard.
I don't really hate anybody in my immediate world (except, of course, my old landlord,
Dick Dumont yeah: he knows what he did). But it's easy enough to drop the word hate into
conversation. "Oh, I hate that" and "Don't you just hate him/her?"Â We do it all the time,
but do we truly hate the thing or person?
For "Collymore closing in..." in 1996, you can read "It's Michael Owen..." in
2009. Both games were littered with brilliant goals, pathetic defending and some of the most
exciting football the Premier League has seen. Now though, two days on from "The Greatest
Manchester Derby in the History of Anything Anytime Ever", it is surely the time to look back
on it with a more tactical eye.
Can West Ham United's new Italian talent have the same impact on the Hammers as club legend
Paolo Di Canio did between 1999 and 2003? Gianfranco Zola signed Alessandro Diamanti for a fee of
around Â£6 million in the summer. Big money for an untested player especially in light of West
Ham's supposed financial handicap.
Fabio Capello has always been consistent with his selections, and in four of England's last five
matches, it has been Manchester United's Wayne Rooney and Aston Villa's Emile Heskey who have been
England's starting marksman and both can be considered as shoe-ins for England World Cup squad.
Looking for bargain players below the top price in each position? There are some great
valued players to be had if you're looking to free up some cash for that "big" signing.
Kevin picks out two from each position and tells you why you should be investing
in these great valued players.
After such an eventful weekend, it would be easy to lose sight of some of the Premier League's
lesser lights but away from the glitz and glamour of the Manchester and London derbies a strange
thing happened â€“ all three promoted teams won. Stranger still, it wasn't the first time such an
event has happened this season.
Okay, let's be clear, Craig Bellamy is wild. He is rash, unpredictable, and probably would be a
career criminal if he wasn't a footballer. He's got more tattoos than John Mayer's right arm, more
baggage than an Airbus landing at Heathrow, more teeth than Mr.
Well you've got to hand it to him, Gary Megson must have the thickest skin in professional
football. I've seen him barracked by his own fans at 4 different clubs over the years and that's
some going, even in the fickle world of the football supporter. At a Nottingham Forest game, I saw
fans come to blows trying to get to him, at Leicester I saw a fan throw his season ticket at him in
his 3rd game in charge.
The sight of Ledley King pulling up when Didier Drogba was running towards the Tottenham goal in
Sunday's London derby left me with a resigned feeling of deja vu. Even on one leg, a training
regime of swimming twice a week and the frailties of the midfield formation that wasn't working,
King was keeping Drogba quiet.
In the annals of English Football, goalkeepers have always held a certain mystique throughout
its history. When you think of great English goalkeepers, the names of Gordon Banks, Peter Shilton
and Ray Clemence come to mind. Generally, the modern opinion is that you need to be a little mad to
Rebecca Lowe of ESPN UK will be one of the next guests on the EPL Talk Podcast, the only Premier
League interview show on the Internet. And you have a chance to have your questions asked on-air to
her. Please post them in the comments section below and the best questions will be asked.
Ben Foster has been enjoying his recent run as Manchester United's number one, "I've really
enjoyed being involved so far it's what I've wanted, when you have a solid run in the team you can
look forward to games in advance and settle down a bit more.
Diving is a skill like any other in football and should be embraced as such.
This might be heresy to some. Certain fans unappreciative of the skill think play-actors are
ruining the game with their histrionics. Well, the simple truth is that they are wrong and need to
wake up to the fact that diving has always been, has always worked and as such should be viewed as
the important, valuable and integral part of the beautiful game.
Bellamy & Garrido More amazing video clips are a click away
After one of the most exciting Manchester derbies ended yesterday, tempers flared again after an
alleged Manchester United supporter ran on to the pitch and was then tackled by stewards. However,
while the stewards held the offender, Manchester City's Craig Bellamy walked over and punched him
in the face.
Okay, so we are pretty settled into the 2009-2010 season and I am, yet again, having major
issues with my fantasy team. What's going on? How can I have 14 points in one weekend? How can
Michael Turner do so well for Hull and not for Sunderland? How, in the name of all that is holy,
can my captain, Frank Lampard, not have scored a single goal this season?
The influence of foreigners on football in England cannot be underestimated. While Coach Fabio
Capello has guided England through the qualifiers and instilled a winning mentality amongst the
players, the skills of EnglishÂ players such as Wayne Rooney and the presence of leaders like John
Terry must also be credited with the change in England's fortunes.
There are a lot of things that worry me about Liverpool FC's team this season. The match against
West Ham United was a perfect example where they were fortunate to win after West Ham United played
them off the park for large portions of the match.
To me, Liverpool were blessed by individual performances at Upton Park that smoothed over a
couple of weaknesses:
Jamie Carragher had a poor game compared to his typical performances, but there's no
hiding the fact that both of Liverpool's centre backs were unable to deal with the pace of the
The latest video flashback takes us back to 1988 when England was a terrible football team
despite finding glory just two years later in the 1990 World Cup.
This video features Brian Clough and Brian Moore. Cloughie makes a flub in the beginning of the
analysis but doesn't seem to care, which is followed by commentary from the legendary Brian Moore
and Trevor Francis in this match which ended 0-0.
Google has added a new feature to its Calendar product that allows registered users to subscribe
to a free list of upcoming fixtures for any of the 20 Premier League clubs. That's great news for
football supporters, but it may be a thorn in the side for the Premier League and another issue
that will add considerable strain to the relationship between the league and the technology company
(the Premier League sued YouTube, now owned by Google, in May 2007).
Much has been made of the demise of Leeds United AFC. We are all familiar with the tale of gross
overspending, Ridsdale's goldfish, and a descent into the third tier of English football. Football
supporters have little sympathy for a club that reached the quarterfinals of the Champions League
in 2001 and are now playing in League One due to its own negligence.
(While we all catch our breath from the Champions League,...)
Sunday, the 20th of September, 2009 marks (by my estimation) the 154th Manchester Derby. Also by
my estimation, this weekend's match is quite possibly one of, if not the most important
match the 2 clubs have ever played against each other.
It's time for another edition of the Manchester Derby, and City must already be lamenting its
With Emmanuel Adebayor suspended, Robinho and Roque Santa Cruz definitely out with injury and
Carlos Tevez a serious doubt with a knee injury, the upstarts may be hurting for strike options in
Before yesterday I knew about as much about Debreceni VSC as I know about the Faint Object
Spectograph on the Hubble Telescope. They are among the "new kids" in the Champions League and not
knowing anything about their club (or their league) forced me to underestimate them greatly. I
assumed this would be an easy win for Liverpool.
Here are several important updates for subscribers to Fox Soccer Channel, GolTV and ESPN2:
The ratings for last Saturday's Liverpool against Burnley match on ESPN2 (10am
ET kickoff) were a 0.2, according to Nielsen. The game was watched in 196,041 households for a
total viewing audience of 253,779,
Fox Soccer Channel will offer a free preview of its network on the following
cable networks in areas of the country between September 14-20: Comcast Denver, Comcast Fort Wayne,
Comcast Indianapolis, Comcast Portland, Comcast Salt Lake City, Comcast Seattle, Cox Phoenix, Cox
Tucson, Time Warner Columbus and Time Warner Kansas City,
GolTV has acquired the TV rights to many of the Europa League matches.
Given the choice between watching a match in high-definition television or watching a game in
standard definition, which one would you choose? What if the choice was, like last weekend,
Liverpool against Burnley in HD on ESPN2 or Manchester City versus Arsenal in standard definition
on Setanta Sports?
This weekend's match between Manchester United and Manchester City has the potential to be the
most explosive match of the season so far. There are so many storylines and the game hasn't kicked
Fortunately, we've got two pairs of tickets to give away, courtesy of
Before the season started, I knew little about this Burnley side. I like to see former
top-flight stalwarts come up and Burnley one of the orginal 12 sides in the Football League haven't
been up in 33 years. But apart from that, I knew no reason why they shouldn't be on track to follow
Derby County and West Bromwich Albion straight back down.
Mix2nd Half UCL Besiktas V Man Utd 09 15 09 720p HD Skpd Funny bloopers are a click away
Every once in a while, the Wayne Rooney we remember from Everton and his early days at
Manchester United reveals himself. The lad with the uncontrollable temper who would lash out at
opposing players and be a liability to the team he was playing for.
Something suddenly dawned on me last night. With hundreds of thousands of football supporters
visiting this site on a monthly basis, many of us support different clubs and despise our
archenemies. But while there are lots of differences between us, there are a few things in common.
We all love football that goes without saying.
That is, one with Didier Drogba and one without Didier Drogba. I, like many others have stated
before, have always had this sort-of idea that Chelsea were a completely different team when Drogba
wasn't playing. During tonight's match versus Porto, this idea culminated into a thesis that was
entirely tangible and defensible.
I have a big problem with Liverpool's new sponsor. While I'm glad to see a deal that will
provide the club with Â£80m over the next four years, and while the hope that new stadium plans and
healthier transfer budgets will emerge gets me giddy... it's Standard Chartered Bank... I can't
drink it during matchtime.
With Portugal on the verge of non-qualification for the World Cup in 2010, manager Carlos
Queiroz is under extreme pressure and has the very real possibility of unemployment looming over
him. Given this threat, and inevitability that this will occur, I ask you.
The world of broadband rights for Premier League, Champions League and other football
competitions and tournaments can be very confusing and frustrating at times. So with the recent
relaunch of FoxSoccer.tv, Fox Soccer Channel's broadband package, we thought it would be wise to
interview a key executive at Fox regarding the new platform.
I had to laugh this past weekend when the commentator described the City of Manchester Stadium
as a "cauldron." To me, it's a bowl. A bowl that removes the crowd from the game. Instead, a better
analogy of a cauldron would be a particular stadium in Istanbul for tonight's must-watch match
between Besiktas and Manchester United.
After what sounds like an absolutely epic appeal by Arsenal worthy of a Hague courtroom, UEFA
has overturned Eduardo's two-match ban for diving. How you feel about the decision likely has a lot
to do with your thoughts on whether such punishments are truly effective deterrents to such
I was a little concerned coming into the last fixture. It wasn't because Burnley has already
beaten United and Everton. It wasn't because Burnley aren't afraid to attack. I saw these things as
healthy signs for Liverpool. Â Liverpool usually do well against attacking sides.
Manchester United finished up 3-1 victors over Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane, but the
victory was somewhat spoiled by the sending off of Paul Scholes, who was made to walk after two
yellow card offences. Did the punishment fit the crime or is it about time the â€˜Ginger Prince'
mastered the art of tackling?
Saturday's Manchester City v. Arsenal match was exciting for many reasons: six goals, fast,
fluid play, a fun atmosphere, two players playing against their former team, fans throwing all
sorts of things at one certain player... All of this made for a great match. While I'll only
mention Adebayor's celebration just this once, we can all agree it provoked emotion from both
sides, which is ultimately why we watch football.
There's something about the new Premier League intro that plays before each game that bothers
me. If you haven't seen it, take a minute to watch it first (click the video above). It's
definitely a feel good video that illustrates the global appeal of the Premier League from Africa
to Asia and other continents.
As the EPL and the rest of Europe completes the first month of the domestic season, it is
interesting to look at the travels of perhaps the EPL's greatest finisher: one Robbie Fowler.Â
Having been discarded by Blackburn amidst the outing of old friend Paul Ince, many wondered what
Fowler's next move would be.
Emmanuel Adebayor has committed the ultimate sin. Leaving a big four club for a side with
ambition to join the elite clubs in England. For this, and his actions on the pitch in Saturday's
4-2 City win at Eastlands, he must be banned for life from English football. Â Arsenal fans deserve
Emmanuel Adebayor is Public Enemy Number One at the moment, partly for his stamp on Robin Van
Persie, and mostly because of his goal celebration in front of the Arsenal fans. "Inciting a riot".
Of course it was ill-advised he must have Ashley Cole's Public Relations officer but it still
should not defend the embarrassing actions of the Arsenal fans present, causing unnecessary injury
to a steward.
It's a feature of human nature that we are quick, in the heat of the moment, to see our point of
view over another's.Â However, the mature person is able to see, after some introspection, the
extent to which he is culpable.
Professional athletes often lack this maturity.
The lore of Emmanuel Adebayor includes tales of playing football barefoot on dirt fields as a
youth in his homeland of Togo.
Paul Doyle of The Guardian once described Carlos Tevez as "the rich man's Dirk Kuyt." That man
may be far more rich than we thought.
Carlos Tevez left Manchester United for Manchester City, in a deal that reportedly paid Tevez'
handlers Â£25.5m. According to a new report in The Times, Tevez' fee may really be Â£47m, nearly
twice the initial figure.
The hype for the October release of FIFA 10 is building, and it's no wonder when you see video
like this (see above) featuring some of the amazing new skills and graphics.
The video is beautifully created by 16-year-old Norwegian Marius Hjerpseth. In it, the whiz kid
shows actual game footage and then shows video from FIFA 10 and includes instructions on how to
make the new moves.
Lennon's cross arcs over the box. It hones in on Steven Gerrard who waits just outside the
crowd. He jumps, coils his neck and smashes the ball toward goal. His header flies down into the
net. 2-0 to England.
I'm an American, but I still get chills when Gerrard scores for his country.
The shock transfer ban recently imposed on Chelsea for their "inducing" of young French player
Gael Kakuta has again raised the argument of English clubs scouting for and developing too many
foreign players within their youth systems. Why?
It's a simple numbers game.
Football is a global sport, so it would make very little sense for a club to ignore the wealth
of upcoming talent outside of their own back yard.
What a difference two years make. In November, 2007, England succumbed to Croatia at Wembley by
a scoreline of 2-3 and thus surrendered their qualifying for Euro 2008. Cue the images of a
fumbling Steve McClaren and an England team with so little confidence. Croatia, meanwhile, looked
like world beaters.
In 2005, Michael Shields was convicted by a Bulgarian court for the attempted murder of a barman
after Liverpool's Champions League victory in Istanbul. Between a jail in Bulgaria and Thorn Cross
prison in Chesire, England, Shields, now 22, has spent the last four years behind bars. But, today,
his 15 year sentance has been lifted.
In the latest browser wars, the browser usage statistics show that Firefox has almost 50% of the
market share. Other than how easier it is to use and how fast it is, one of the reasons web users
love Firefox is because of their massive library of add-ons. So since we're all soccer fans, I
thought I'd share five favorite Firefox add-ons and they're all free.
Isn't it amazing how long it takes Fifa to put put five words together and then act upon them.
Football's transfer system is flawed and everybody knows it, so why is it only now that
constructive action is being taken?
The biggest problem faced by the current system is the widespread tapping-up of players and the
lack of either a deterrent or preventative measures.
Brian Clough's managerial career has been well documented, but it often completely overshadows
the success Clough had as a player. Whilst he was often accused of nepotism towards his son Nigel
whilst he was the manager of Nottingham Forest, it wasn't hard to see where the younger player got
his footballing talent from.
Before Saturday, I remained undecided on whether or not FIFA should add two more officials to
the mix. But since England won the surreal penalty against Slovenia, I find myself tipping in the
direction of adding the extra officials.
In one of the more eye-popping Did-That-Really-Just-Happen moments I've seen in a while, Wayne
Rooney managed to win a penalty after tugging on his Slovenian marker's shirt, losing his balance
and falling to the ground.
Today's video flashback is from the late 1960s when two quality teams, Leeds United and
Manchester United, faced each other at Elland Road.
The video footage is interesting for several different seasons. It's in black and white. Plus
you get to watch the opening of the show for a program that's simply titled "Football" with its
title music that sounds like it's going to be the Match Of The Day theme but quickly transpires
into a different song.
If you were your country's top scorer with a healthy 35 goals in 73 appearances, chances are
you'd be an established top league player in most countries in Europe. Add to that record a career
that has seen you start out at Manchester United and take in spells at Leeds United, Sunderland and
Fulham, you'd expect a pretty good record.
I settled down yesterday afternoon ready for one of those great footballing days that come along
every now and again. I had the prospect of 4 matches in a row to keep me entertained (including
Charlton v Brentford!) and to see if Scotland could get a win against Macedonia. It was an
opportunity to run the rule over a few players who have returned to regular football in the
Premiership and see just what Scotland could do.
Jermain Defoe has had a fantastic start to the new season, with goals for England and Spurs;
including his 50th for the club in the 2-1 win at West Ham. His hat trick and all round performance
against Hull City was clearly his best performance in a Spurs shirt in either spell. When he
rejoined Spurs in January this year, he was welcomed back with open arms as a disastrous season
began to show the green shoots of recovery under Harry Redknapp.
Is football hooliganism in the U.K. more prevalent than ever?
In an age of astronomical transfer fees, CCTV, better policing methods, higher ticket prices &
all-stadium seating, one would think not. Aren't we always led to believe that football in the U.K.
has emerged triumphantly out of the dark ages of the 70's & 80's?
While there's no Premier League matches on until next weekend, here's another video from
yesteryear to show how much the game of English football has changed as well as to give us video
evidence of some of the legendary players of England.
The video features first half highlights from the London derby between Tottenham Hotspur and
West Ham United from the 1970-71 season.
It was only a friendly, so I got the sense that both the supporters and England footballers were
a little more subdued than usual, but in England's 2-1 victory against Slovenia at Wembley on
Saturday night there was a lot to worry about.
Despite winning, England looked like they were playing in slow-motion, had difficulty rapidly
moving the ball up the field and revealed lots of holes in the back.
All over the world tonight, people are cheering on their respective national teams. The
Slovenians, the Georgians, the English, the Danes, just to name a few. As a citizen of a country
with a lowly rank of 127 on the FIFA World Ranking table, I should probably feel a little bit
sorry, a little bit jealous, possibly a little bit angry over the fact that my country has barely
moved up the rankings at all over the years.
At age 22, Zinedine Zidane was playing in the Intertoto Cup with Bordeaux. At that same age,
Ã‰ric Cantona had just got a move from Auxerre to Marseille. Rivaldo had just moved from
Corinthians to cross-town rivals Palmeiras in SÃ£o Paulo.
With the money involved in today's game and globalized scouting networks, such players would
already have been with one of the European giants before they had the chance to establish
themselves in their local teams.
Australia's remarkable run of results has come crashing to a halt at the Seoul World Cup Stadium
asÂ Korea downed the Socceroos 3-1 Â tonight in an International Friendly. With both teams safely
through to the World Cup Finals as top of their Asian qualifying groups, this was a chance for both
managers to test some new players, and Aussie coach Pim Verbeek rang in the changes in what was a
homecoming for him, as he coached South Korea before taking the Australian job.
I came across this video today which features a West Ham United against Manchester United match
from 1975, and an unfortunate incident where parts of the ground were so overcrowded that fans were
getting crushed at the front and spilling over the fence on to the pitch.
It demonstrates how packed football grounds were and how the police had a difficult time trying
to control crowds.
Usually during international breaks I find myself having more time to reflect on the Premier
League, what it is and where it came from. After crawling around YouTube, I uncovered the above
video which I thought would be eye-opening to many readers of EPL Talk, to have a better idea of
what English football used to be like as well as how it was produced for television.
I've said elsewhere: there's something about old top flight stalwarts. I'm excited to see Wolves
and Burnley up in the top flight again. (Birmingham have come up every other season since I've been
watching so that seems too routine to be thrilling.) I'd love to see a club like Nottingham Forest
or Crystal Palace or Sheffield Wednesday climb up the Championship table and come back up for old
ESPN presenter Georgie Bingham will be a future guest on the EPL Talk Podcast, and we'd like to
hear your suggested questions. The best questions will be asked on-air to Georgie and if we use
your question, your name will be mentioned on-air.
Georgie Bingham, born in London in 1977, is a news and sports journalist and English television
It seems like this is all coming out of nowhere. Any fan of the game knows that the "tapping-up"
allegations have always been prominent but rarely has it been so harshly punished. From United's
perspective, they were accused of tapping up Dimitar Berbatov and Wayne Rooney in the recent past
and accused Real Madrid of tapping-up Ronaldo(the accusing needed not be done, Ronaldo was caught
In the short time since Chelsea were found guilty of inducing Gael Kakuta to breach his contract
at RC Lens, and banned from the registration of new players until 1st Sept 2010 i.e. two transfer
windows away a lot has been written, blogged, said and alleged some fact, some fiction.
Uefa handed Arsenal's Eduardo a two-match ban for diving against Celtic, a simulation that won
the Gunners a penalty. FIFA have now banned Chelsea FC from signing any new players until January
2011 since it's been revealed Chelsea induced Gael Kakuta to break his contract with Lens in
It's funny how karma works.Â Chelsea took an inhumanely stern line with Adrian Mutu, and now
FIFA has taken a stern line with them.
The Blues have been found guilty of "inducing" French midfielder Gael Kakuta to break his
contract with Lens in 2007.Â FIFA has forbid them to participate in the next two transfer windows,
barring them from signing a player until 2011.
- The 1958 Welsh World Cup Team
- Who was the best attacking player Charles faced
- His brother John's career
- The Cardiff City vs Swansea City rivalry
- Thoughts about John Toshack both as a player and a manager
EPL Talk Podcast: Questions Please For Mel Charles
EPL Talk Podcast: Mikel John Obi
Why this Welshman will be Supporting Portsmouth in the FA Cup Final
Almost twenty years ago England went to Poland knowing that a draw would qualify them for Italia
90. A backs-to-the wall performance and the magnificence of Peter Shilton ensured they had their
point and the team then went onto reach the semi-finals of the tournament that arguably saved
English football from itself and ultimately elevated it to today's dizzy heights.
The Guardian reported last night that the Premier League have been dealt a massive legal blow in
its fight against online piracy when an Israeli court threw out an attempt to shut down a pirate
website that was showing live matches free of charge.
Some of the observations made by the Israeli court include:
it was a case of "fair use" since no profit was made from the broadcasts and that, in Israeli
law, breach of "broadcasting" copyright only referred to cable or wireless transmission and not
streaming over the internet.
So far this Premier League season, what would you say have been the biggest surprises?
We're only four matches in and there are plenty of talking points. I tend not to get too
over-excited during the beginning of the season especially because there's a long way to go. But
for me the biggest surprises have been how well Manchester City have started the season.
The inexplicable is often the standard in football.Â The Â£14 million pounds Man City paid for
Wayne Bridge is inexplicable.Â Florent Malouda's protean hairstyles are inexplicable.Â Arsene
Wenger's ability to see zero penalties against Arsenal is inexplicable.Â Yet even bearing this in
mind, I could not help but rubbing my eyes to make sure I had read the headline correctly:
Abramovich keen to stop big-spending City
The gist of the article is that Abramovich feels that Manchester City have spent too much and
need to be reigned in.
"Giggs looking to pick out Rooney... who's got there, is that a penalty kick?! What does Mike
Dean say?! He says penalty!"
This whole routine is getting a little old, isn't it? Screw diamonds, refereeing mistakes are
forever. It's like the referees all convene and decide whose turn it is to make mistake and forbid
us from ever forgetting how truly inadequate they are.
There have been a few surprises after the first couple weeks in the English Premier League
2009-2010 season, such as Tottenham with 12 points after four games, and Manchester United's loss
to the newly promoted Burnley.Â Â Another one you can add to the list is Everton's start to the
Much has been said about Arsenal striker Eduardo da Silva's dive against Celtic during last
Wednesday's 2nd leg of the Champions League pre-qualifier. One split-second incident has led to
questions about Michael Platini's proposed system of 5 referees, TV technology, retrospective
charges and just exactly what is it that constitutes a dive.
Barney Ronay will be a future guest on the EPL Talk Podcast.
Best known to readers as a writer for The Guardian as well as a regular guest on The Guardian's
Football Weekly Podcast, Ronay has written a new book entitled "The Manager." The bookÂ takes the
reader beyond the well-worn anecdotes, deeper into the stories of football's top men and the world
That the EPL is the best championship in the world is plain for everyone to see.Â The teams are
far and away the strongest, most physical, and quickest.Â With exceptions to super teams like
Barcelona, the four Premier League teams involved in the Champions League can (and do) knock off
foreign opposition rather easily.