On Saturday, Manchester United's Nani scored a goal against Tottenham Hotspur which was
extremely controversial and will be the topic of many conversations over the next few days. Looking
at it again and again, the goal was a result of poor sportsmanship by Nani and a mix-up in
communication between Spurs goalkeeper Heurehlo Gomes and the referee and assistant referee.
As the trio on the EPL Talk Podcast mentioned in the latest episode, it's been a long week in
terms of there being little major news breaking and not a lot of football on television. But now
that Saturday has arrived, we're graced with the familiar return of the Premier League.
Today there are several mouthwatering matches on offer including West Ham against Arsenal,
Wolves versus Manchester City and the big one, Manchester United against Tottenham.
In a worrying development for Ian Holloway and Blackpool, club captain Charlie Adam will take his
club to a Premier League arbitration court next week over unpaid bonuses. Adam is set to take the
club to court over unpaid payments after the Seasiders avoided relegation from the
It's safe to say that this year's promotion class has been a revelation. Newcastle will of
course, always be a top-flight side for whom relegation is an aberration, but both West Brom and
Blackpool have been a breath of fresh air in the way they've consistently played attractive
When the creators of Special 1 TV chose Jose Mourinho, Wayne Rooney, Sven-Goran Eriksson and Sir
Alex Ferguson as some of the main characters of the show, it was an incredibly wise decision not
only because they're wonderful characters but also because they're in the news all the time.
By all accounts Stoke have been one of the sides underachieving so far in the Premier League. One
of the more active teams in the transfer market over the summer, many expected the Potters to push
for a top-half finish this term, but as of yet they have shown little to suggest they are capable
Argentina legend Diego Maradona has admitted that he does want to manage in the Premier League.
It's sure to be a statement that will raise a few eyebrows, but would any Premier League club
really want the man, who's infamous hand-ball effectively knocked England out of the World Cup, in
charge of their club?
Newcastle and Sunderland...where to begin? They may not be the most recognisable teams in the
world and I'm pretty sure there are a lot of people in the world that have never even heard of
these two places. They sound quite simple settlements, yet the history in the North East England is
spectacular and you'll hear any pundit coin phrases such as "football is life up there".
Saturday's late game features Tottenham's visit to Old Trafford to take on Manchester United in
arguably the weekend's most entertaining contest. Manchester United are coming off a decent enough
week which saw them finally win away in the Premier League at Stoke City by the score of 2 goals to
Not even a slow, non-Champions League week can slow down the EPL Talk Podcast team, with myself,
Kartik Krishnaiyer and Laurence McKenna bringing you this wrap-up of Carling Cup action and the
week's news before previewing this weekend's fixtures in the English Premier League. Front and
center, as far as the matches are concerned: Tottenham Hotspur's visit to Old Trafford, Saturday's
Hello and welcome to EPL Talk's new weekly Fantasy League tips column. If you are constantly
experiencing selection problems ahead of the weekends fixtures this is the column for you
(hopefully!). Every week I will do my best to not only pick out the weeks potential points grabbers
but also suggest who might benefit from a weekend of bench warming.
After this weeks "enthralling" Carling Cup fixtures we are one step closer to knowing which club
will be winning the lesser of the English trophies this season. But does anybody really care about
the trophy which is rapidly losing its appeal.
I think the attendances of this weeks games tells a story about the demand for a secondary cup
While his most recent revelation has proved, one in which Michael Owen expressed his desire to
languish on Manchester United's bench instead of pursuing first team football elsewhere, the story
of Owen's decline into English football obscurity, while often times sad, continues.
With yet another fresh injury to the hamstring again placing Owen on a bench in England's top
flight, even now the optimists must believe the striker is considering what would be a semi early
retirement at only 30.
For those readers expecting to read a juicy story about why Torres and Reina are ready to quit
Liverpool in January, I apologize.
You see, The Daily Mirror published a story about it last night. Whether it's true or not, we'll
have to wait and see, but I'm sure it gave the Mirror the traffic it wanted despite there being no
sources named in the article.
Some people prefer Microsoft over Apple. Others prefer Pro Evolution Soccer (aka Winning Eleven)
over the FIFA video game series. But for those of you who prefer the Konami title instead of EA
Sports, here's a video which bring you 8 years of Pro Evolution Soccer (aka Winning Eleven)
history, in just over 9 minutes.
There's very little in common between Arsenal and Blackpool. Both clubs couldn't be more
opposite. But they do both enjoy playing an attractive style of football rather than hoofing it up
the pitch. But perhaps one of the biggest differences between the clubs is the number of foreign
players that play for both sides.
The FIFA video game series has continued to evolve since it launched in late 1993. With the
recent launch of FIFA 11, the game is now the fastest selling sports game ever with over 2.6
million games sold and over $150 million generated in less than a week of the game being
One of the things that has surprised me this season is the lack of praise being thrown towards
Roberto Di Matteo and his very impressive West Bromwich Albion side. Of the three promoted sides,
Blackpool have the best manager for soundbites, Newcastle have some off the field issues and
strange living arrangments for some of the squad.
I've had it with your negative comments, I can't take it. I quit!
Still here? Why? I quit didn't I? Oh, that's right I'm on one of those football contracts, the
most bizarre of conventions in modern sports. Of course fixed term contracts are not unique to
football but in what other profession except as an athlete are you forced to work for an employer
you don't want to?
Controversial as it may sound, I just could not help but share my thoughts. Some might agree and
some might not, but it's all up to your own judgements. As we all know, from this year onwards, the
FIFA World Player of The Year and the highly prestigious Ballon d'Or will be combined and
rechristened the new FIFA Ballon d'Or award.
While the Carling Cup begins again today and tomorrow, a lot of talk is being brandished around
about the relevancy of the actual existence of the tournament itself. While I believe the League
Cup has enjoyed a resurgence over the course of the last few years, many disagree stating it's a
silly competition that simply gets in the way of the Premier League and Champions League (for those
clubs participating in it) and takes away from the much more prestigious FA Cup.
FIFA have today announced the shortlist for the Ballon d'Or award, and as promised it has revealed
just how much England underperformed at the World Cup, but perhaps surprisingly it suggests a power
shift away from the Premier League.
In all honesty nobody could say they are surprised to see not one English player nominated for
When I'm chatting with friends about music, I often ask them what was their favorite concert of
all time. For me, it was a performance by Midnight Oil in 1987 or 1988 in a tiny club on the Fort
Lauderdale strip. This was before their single "Beds Are Burning" became a nationwide hit.
Blackburn Rovers look set to become the latest Premier League club to be snapped up by foreign
investors. Indian group Venky's are hopeful of completing a takeover of the club by November, a
move which will see the first Indian owners of a Premier League club.
While the announcement is sure to course excitement amongst Rovers fans, the statement made by
Venky's chairperson Anuradha J Desai should make them urge on the side of caution.
Fulham Football Club. from The Neighbourhood on Vimeo.
Fulham is the oldest professional football club in London with a very proud history. The west
London side is a small club in a giant city. But as you can see from the above video, it's a club
that has a rich history and an ideal location alongside the beautiful River Thames.
In a week where we were treated to an utterly enthralling Champions League game at the San Siro
and the emotional scoring return to the Emirates of Eduardo, the biggest stories were one player's
greed and the near collapse of a team that won the FA Cup three seasons ago.
The margin of error is shrinking. In years gone by, managers would have more time to adapt and
to get results. Nowadays managers are on a short leash. And someone like Roy Hodgson, even after
nine points from nine games, is hanging by a thread.
Sure, Liverpool finds itself stuck near the bottom of the table, but I've been disappointed with
what seems like a witch hunt by some Liverpool pundits to get Hodgson sacked.
As much as I do enjoy the off the field entertainment associated with football in England, early
Saturday kickoffs are always a welcome relief to the insanity of contract negotiations, rumors and
managerial master classes. While topics concerning the week that was have been written on at
length, it's now time to get back down to the exploits on the pitch in what ended a weekend of
Premier League football with plenty of talking points.
If there were any doubts whether Arsenal was serious about contending for the Premier League
title this season, they were all washed away Sunday with a convincing 3-0 victory against
Manchester City at Eastlands.
Arsenal created some luck in the first five minutes after an inch-perfect through ball forced
Dedryck Boyata to commit a foul.
Chelsea is now five points clear at the top of the Premier League after their 2-0 win over
Wolves was followed by Manchester City's 0-3 loss to Arsenal. Now, three teams sit behind the Blues
with 17 points thanks to Manchester United returning to their late goals coring ways at the
Chelsea's lead atop the Premier League is up to five points after the weekend's action, where
the Match of the Week saw a 10-man Manchester City lose ground on the league leaders, falling to
Arsenal 0-3 at Eastlands.
On today's recording of the EPL Talk Podcast, myself, Laurence McKenna and special co-host Jesse
Chula will talk about that .
Nine games in to the 2010/11 Premier League season and Chelsea have opened up a five point lead at
the top of the Premier League. Gameweek nine always promised to be a prosperous one for Chelsea
with title rivals Manchester City and Arsenal going head-to-head, but Arsenal's victory was the
perfect result for Carlo Ancelotti's side who have now some breathing space.
There was finally some joy for Roy Hodgson after his Liverpool side gained a potentially vital
victory over Blackburn at Anfield. While it might not have lifted Liverpool out of the bottom
three, the result will certainly act as a real confidence boost, and will give Hodgson something to
In many ways, I prefer that most of the Big Four teams play on Sunday because it gives me a
better chance of seeing the Other 16 on a Saturday. Of course, the Big Four is in flux, but
Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United still draw the most eyeballs.
So, on Saturday, I had a chance to watch two matches so far.
Manchester City will host Arsenal tomorrow in a game which could be crucial for both sides this
season. But for one man the game will be a chance to erase some dark memories of the last time
Arsenal visited Eastlands.
Emmanuel Adebayor is in line for a rare Premier League start after an impressive midweek
hat-trick against Lech Poznan in the Europa League.
After an exhausting week of action off the pitch thanks to a Master Rooney, I'm so looking
forward to seeing actual real football played on the pitch this weekend. The action kicks off with
the early kick-off between Spurs and Everton, which is always an entertaining match, and is then
followed by plenty of intriguing matches including Sunderland versus Aston Villa, Chelsea (how many
can they score) at home against Wolves, the two skillful sides of West Brom against Fulham and more
culminating with what should be an entertaining match between West Ham and Newcastle.
Avram Grant must love a challenge. Last year he took on the impossible task of trying to keep a
debt-ridden Portsmouth in the Premier League, and this term he has turned his attentions to
ensuring West Ham don't also suffer the embarrassment of relegation.
While it has not exactly been the start that the former Chelsea boss would have hoped for with
the Hammers currently sitting bottom of the league, they are currently on a four game unbeaten run
in the Premier League.
Ian Holloway this week was in fine form as he hit out at Wayne Rooney for "bullying" Sir Alex
Ferguson. Â It's just the latest in a long line of Holloway rants that have made him so popular
amongst the media. Let's take a look at some of Ollie's best ever quotes.
Holloway describing an â€˜ugly' win for his QPR side at Chesterfield:"To
put it in gentleman's terms if you've been out for a night and you're looking for a young lady and
you pull one, some weeks they're good looking and some weeks they're not the best.
It's incredible to consider how soccer video games have evolved from the early 1980s to the
latest versions of FIFA and Pro Evolution Soccer. The realism of today's games blows everything
away from the past, but it's important to consider where we came from to better appreciate today.
Even if the graphics of old games weren't as pristine as today, the playability in many ways was
easier and more fun.
Sir Alex Ferguson confirmed this morning that Wayne Rooney will be out for "three weeks" due to
an ankle injury picked up in training this past Tuesday after a Paul Scholes tackle put him out of
commission.Â Whether or not Rooney will be later interviewed for the real reason why he will be
sitting out important games for United (home to Tottenham on October 30 and away for the Manchester
derby on November 10) remains to be seen.
Upon my return back home, The Gaffer asked me to share some more thoughts and observations
concerning my trip to England. Although our trip had to be cut slightly short, it's incredible just
how much we were able to see, do and experience in just a few weeks. A rewarding journey I'm still
It's our weekly trip down memory lane with the series of Friday Flashback Videos, released every
Friday on EPL Talk. Today we look at the 1970-71 season in English football thanks to a program
called Match Of The 70s.
The documentary takes you through the entire season with plenty of wonderful footage of greats
such as, in part one, Manchester United's George Best, dirty Leeds United, Arsenal's John Radford,
hooliganism at Derby's Baseball Ground, the goal by Chelsea's Alan Hudson which wasn't a goal, and
A mob of around 40 people descended on Wayne Rooney's mansion Thursday night and made death
threats. The Daily Telegraph reported that United supporters were chanting "Join Man City and you
die," while The Guardian reported that protesters unfurled a "If you join City, you're dead"
Liverpool produced an improved display to gain a well earned 0-0 draw against Napoli. Reds boss Roy
Hodgson opted to make a whole host of changes for the game, but his fringe players certainly
impressed with notable performances from Jay Spearing and Jonjo Shelvey.
While I don't want to take anything away from the Liverpool display you have to question the
Liverpool side that Hodgson put out.
While Champions League is usually the topic of conversation on the mid-week podcasts, this week,
we have more important issues to talk about. On this edition of the EPL Talk Podcast, myself,
Kartik Krishnaiyer and Laurence McKenna discussion Wayne Rooney and Roy Hodgson before looking
forward to the weekend's action.
Last week, theÂ United States dropped out of contention to host the 2018 World Cup, deciding
instead to concentrate its efforts on beating out Australia, Qatar, Japan and South Korea for 2022.
This ensures that Europe will host in 2018 and emboldens England's chances. Also vying for 2018 are
Russia, a joint Belgium/Netherlands entry and an Iberian Peninsula bid from Spain and Portugal.
After an astonishing performance in Milan, there surely can't be any doubt that the answer is a
categorical yes. Who else is playing as well? Who else is having such a major impact? Who else has
scored such a brilliant hat-trick on such a stage?
Had such a magnificent, irresistible hat-trick being scored by someone more high profile,
someone more fashionable perhaps, he would be hailed as a new superstar.
While the lot of the Internet waxes poetic on the Wayne Rooney saga from various corners of the
globe, I've remained oddly quiet on a matter concerning the club I support and a player I've held
in incredibly high regard for some time.
Rooney's declaration of desire this past week hit me in that kind of â€˜I don't really want to
believe it' kind of way.
Regarding Roy Hodgson and the job he's done at Liverpool thus far, let's get all of the
criticisms out on the table. In the past few weeks, I've heard complaints thatÂ "small club"
managers, such as Hodgson from Fulham, don't do well at "big clubs,"Â Hodgson is hopeless
tactically,Â he hasn't won any major trophies,Â the players he's signed have been awful,Â if
Hodgson was a foreigner he would have been sacked by now, he can't handle the pressure, Benitez was
able to finish last season in seventh place with essentially the same side, he waits too long in
matches to make tactical substitutions, and so on.
Eighty games in the books, a cool 300 to go! The 81st and 90th look like the best this weekend
with ESPN2 back with Everton visiting a loud White Hart Lane for the early Saturday kickoff. Can
Spurs provide 10 additional men to join superstar Gareth Bale? And the one I won't miss is the
Sunday tea time match up in the Eastlands with Arsenal visiting their old friend Adebayor in this
battle for second in the EPL.
On Thursday morning at 10am UK time, Manchester United chief executive David Gill will sit down
with Sir Alex Ferguson and will discuss what they plan on doing with Wayne Rooney. Unless the
striker has a change of heart at the last minute, which is extremely doubtful, Rooney will
presumably either be sold in the January transfer window or suspended.
Tottenham went to the San Siro today, and were trounced. The scoreline may read 4-3, but Spurs
were never in it, three highly difficult individual goals, and three very difficult finishes
against a team that had obviously stopped caring gave the end result some respectability.
It was expected that up to 15,000 Spurs fans would make the trip over to Milan for the glamour tie
of Tottenham's Champions League campaign. Well after a disastrous first half that saw the current
tournament holders Inter Milan blast four goals past a beleaguered Spurs,Â many would have been
forgiven for thinking they had a made a wasted trip.
In the past few weeks, you've probably readÂ several of our articles and previews about the
upcoming release of Football Manager 2011, the strategy football game. Well, the good news
is that the game will be out in the stores from November 5th in Europe (U.S. release is scheduled
Five years ago this November, EPL Talk was born. To celebrate our five-year anniversary, we're
doing something unconventional. We're handing over the keys of the kingdom to you. Between now and
November, you can suggest what stories you'd like us to write about. Then the best ideas will be
narrowed down for the readers of EPL Talk to vote on, and the winning stories will then appear on
the site throughout November.
Ever since the news broke there was a palpable sense of disbelief amongst fans, the media and
Blogs. We awaited hearing from the men at the centre of the story and we got that hearing today. It
appears that Sir Alex Ferguson is as shaken by this news as we are even though he has had since
mid-August to digest this news.
Bobby Charlton and the Manchester United team star in a new television commercial for Turkish
Typically we don't run commercials on this site, but this is definitely a well produced and
imaginative ad that features the entire team such as Edwin van der Sar, Wayne Rooney, Patrice Evra,
John O'Shea, the da Silva twins, Paul Scholes and others.
Football supporters are already beginning to have a bit of fun at the prospect of Wayne Rooney
leaving Old Trafford. And it looks like one of them is already one step ahead of Manchester City
with this proposed billboard (Tevez style) that could adorn the entrance to the northern city.
Sir Alex Ferguson has today revealed that Wayne Rooney wants to leave Manchester United. The shock
announcement will set the transfer rumour mill in to overdrive but where is the most likely
destination for the England striker?
The very thought of Rooney in a sky blue shirt is probably enough to make most United fans
turn red with rage.
I'm sure most Middlesbrough fans are pleased that Gordon Strachan has resigned and walked away
without compensation. Our league position tells its own story. It plainly wasn't working and his
increasingly eccentric media interviews revealed a man who looked to be under intense pressure.
For Manchester United and its supporters, it was a week they would rather forget. It beganÂ on
March 30, 2010 when Wayne Rooney limped off with an ankle injury after Bayern Munich scored an
injury-time winner during the first leg of the Champions League quarter-final.
The United Kingdom'sÂ Labour Party held their annual conference recently. Top of the agenda was
selecting a new leader to take charge of the party as it begins to rebuild in the shadow of the
rulingÂ Conservative/Liberal-Democrat coalition government. Intriguingly, the race came down to two
brothers,Â David andÂ Ed Miliband, with the younger Ed edging his elder to the title by a most
Beginning today, Fox Soccer Channel has made significant changes to its primetime viewing
schedule to focus more on the Premier League and Champions League while pushing other shows such as
Soccer Talk Live to late-night viewing times.
The new schedule features a three-hour block of Premier League programming from 7-10pm ET each
Speculation over the future of Wayne Rooney is beginning to reach fever pitch. The Gaffer has
already given us his opinion on the issue which is dividing football fans. Who is in the wrong? Sir
Alex Ferguson or Wayne Rooney?
If I was writing this article earlier on this year, then I can guarantee the news would have
caused great shock and disappointment for United fans, however with Rooney's shocking form of late,
I highly doubt whether the announcement will cause such a stir.
He has clocked up over 640 appearances for the Reds and over the years has displayed the sprit
and fight that Liverpool need right now but his form over the last few seasons and this season in
particular has been questionable. This leaves us to ask the question whether or not the Merseyside
club were right to offer him a new deal.
For the past four days, I was away in Chicago in business meetings. Normally this wouldn't be so
bad if the trip happened during the week. But as it happened on a weekend when I'm usually at home
watching the Premier League matches on my trusty laptop or television, it messed up my typical
routine and left me in the unusual predicament of trying to watch as many of the highlights in as
short of amount of time as possible.
So, Wayne Rooney has declared his intention to walk out on Manchester United after having
serious differences with manager Sir Alex Ferguson. I find this story extremely fascinating because
it's ultimately a power struggle between two egos, Rooney and Ferguson. As manager, Ferguson has
every right to bench Rooney during previous weeks because of his poor form, supposed injury and his
mind not being in the right place due to the allegations in the newspapers about his sexual
Who should the next England manager be after Fabio Capello retires? It's the age old question
that everyone in England has an opinion about. Should he be English or a foreigner? Should he play
a 4-4-2 or a formation used by continental countries or Premier League clubs?
Click on the above flowchart that's a foolproof guide to picking the next England manager.
Liverpool opened the John W. Henry era with one of their mos disappointing Merseyside Derby
performances in recent memory. On this edition of the EPL Talk Podcast, myself, Kartik Krishnaiyer
and Laurence McKenna talk about the result at Goodison Park, Villa's result against Chelsea at
Birmingham, Manchester United's troubles with West Brom, and the rest of this weekend's matches
across the league.
They say the sign of a good side is winning when you're not playing well. If that is the case then
Roberto Mancini's Manchester City could be a real challenger for the Premier League this season
after grinding out another result, this time a 1-0 win at Premier League new-boys Blackpool.
As good as United were in the opening twenty minutes of the match, so too were they awful in the
second half when they allowed West Brom to equalize through a myriad of mistakes. Many of United's
gaffs were easily avoidable, Patrice Evra's botched clearances and Edwin van der Sar's bobble which
allowed the Baggies to equalize should never have occurred, yet no one in Old Trafford on the day
could fault West Brom for earning a point by continuing to stay positive in their approach.
It might have been a good week for Liverpool off the field, but their on pitch woes continued with
a woefully disappointing defeat at the hands of Merseyside rivals Everton. New owner John W Henry,
who was in attendance at Goodison Park, might have been thinking what he had parted Â£300 million
for as goals from Tim Cahill and Mikel Arteta sealed a valuable win for the blue half of
Thank the heavens that league football is back! And boy, did the English Premier League remind
us what we were missing. A Merseyside derby, a compelling (if deliberate) affair at Villa Park, and
a slew of great matches adorned this weekend's fixture list. For myself, Kartik Krishnaiyer and
Laurence McKenna, it's fodder for a great show.
It will be some time before Liverpool supporters know what we're getting with John Henry and
NESV, but we can at least bask in the joy that comes with departure of tweedle-dee and
tweedle-jackass: Mr TomÂ Hicks and Mr GeorgeÂ Gillett.
For us, the news of their ousting as club owners was like having our doctor tellÂ us we had one
week to live only to announce a week later that whateverÂ we had was actuallyÂ curable and, though
it may be a long recovery,Â the future looks bright and we can be fully fit again given time.
While his Wolves side weren't able to earn a valuable victory over West Ham, Mick McCarthy was able
to hit back at Danny Murphy, with a comment in a press conference summing up the universal
disagreement that has followed the Fulham midfielders attack on managers who â€˜encourage' bad
The Merseyside derby is always one of the biggest Premier League matches on the English football
calendar, and today is no different after everything that has happened to Everton and Liverpool
In previous years, many of the Merseyside derbies I've watched are clouded in fog,
victory over Birmingham was overshadowed by a clumsy challenge by Jack Wilshere that saw the young
English star pick up the first red card of his professional career. While Wilshere may have the
world at his feet, the red card demonstrates that the 18-year-old still has plenty learn.
West Brom fought back from two goals down against Manchester Untied to earn a very impressive point
at Old Trafford. At half time few would of thought the final outcome would be anything other than a
comfortable win for the home side, but credit to Roberto Di Mateo's men who continue to
The golden days of Autumn are upon us, the first frosts leaving a kiss of silver on our parks
and gardens; the chilled Chablis gives way to a robust Argentinean Malbec and cardigans begin to
look attractive, once again.
There is something magical about the Fall as nature pulls its sap down to its roots and waits to
the hear spring's siren call in a few months time.
I'm not a religious man, but thank god the Premier League is finally back in action today. I
love the World Cup and the European Championships, but all of the qualifying for international
tournaments is tedious to say the least.
There's a full schedule of Premier League games on today, so feel free to post your rants,
observations, questions or opinions in the comments section below.
I'm liking the vibe of Manchester. Really cool town with a bit less of the fuss involved with
London. Manchester, what an important city as it pertains to my life. The bands that have emerged
from this area have touched me while one of the football teams, the red half, has held great
significance in my footballing passions.
The sale of Liverpool from the grips of Hicks and Gillett was always going to be a messy one but
no one could haveÂ foreseenÂ the events that took place in the last few days of this sale. The
excellent Guardian web site and Official Liverpool web site kept supporters up to date with the
latest developments but it still proved difficult to make sense of what was happening.
Manchester City fans will today be fondly remembering their great manager Malcolm Allison, the
coach who helped the club to the most successful spell in the clubs history. Allison passed away
earlier today aged 83.
The news will bring real sadness to not only City fans but to football fans in general.
In this week's installment of Friday Flashback Videos, we take you back to the 1974-75
season for a then glamor tie between Stoke City and Leeds United. The video features the first ten
minutes of the broadcast and is hosted by the legendary soccer commentator Brian Moore.
Feel free to post your observations about the game in the comments section below.
Did you miss us? Kartik Krisnaiyer, Laurence McKenna and I missed yo during out near-two week
break, with the EPL Talk podcast going silent during the international break. With players
returning to their clubs, the show is back to look ahead to the eighth match day in the English
For many years now a wage cap has been hailed as something that could rejuvenate football. But
could a regimented wage structure really be something that would work and how would it change the
Obviously for a wage cap to work it would have to be something that was done on a worldwide
basis, but the most difficult question of all would be the level at which the cap was set.
Does anybody enjoy the international break? Especially after horrendous US and England matches
Tuesday, I'm glad to have our beloved EPL back. The 4-star match is, of course, the Liverpool
derby, and it's a bottom-of-the-table 6-pointer to boot! Sorry, West Coasters, you simply have to
get up early for that one.
In a game like yesterday's the result is of no consequence. England will still qualify handily
for Euros, (but in all probability not go very far), and they weren't playing their strongest side
by any means. Yet, even if the penalty was awarded and it finished 1-0 to England, I don't think a
single fan would be feeling secure about England's ability to hang with Germany and Spain in the
It seems that the Brits are having a tough time getting to grips with the name of the Boston
baseball team, the Red Sox. Both on Sky Sports News (see above screen capture) and in conversation
(see video below), the Brits keep on calling them the Boston Red Sex.
Fox Soccer Channel has released an app for the Apple iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad that will allow
soccer fans in the United States to watch live streaming Premier League and Champions League
matches on mobile devices.
For the Premier League and Champions League, the Fox Soccer app features:
Today Liverpool FC went through a complicated court procedure to resolve their ownership. Their
biggest rivals, Manchester United, have not had the problems that have engulfed the beleaguered
Anfield club but nevertheless have issues with their ownership. The Glazer takeover of Manchester
United has created friction between the club's support who deride the Glazers and want them out
(Love United, Hate Glazer) and the owners themselves.
Another England game and for many it leaves another feeling of slight depression.
Our response to the outcomes of football matches largely depends on what our expectations are.
Hence, Scotland concede three at home and lose but come away feeling good about themselves because,
in scoring twice and coming back from two nil down, they exceeded what they considered was likely
Club Chairman Martin Broughton described himself as "elated" at the news.
The last few weeks have been nothing short of chaos on Merseyside. But today fans ofÂ Liverpool
finally got the good news that the proposed takeover of the club by New England Sports Ventures has
been given the green light.
It wasn't the result I broke the bank and traveled across the Atlantic Ocean for, but Tuesday's
0-0 between England and Montenegro was the experience I so desired as months of planning
and patience finally paid off. Beautiful Wembley stadium, the tube to Wembley Park station, a cool
October evening, and enough English journalists to make your head spin were all at the forefront of
my senses as the afternoon curtsied to the night.
After a disappointing draw to Montenegro, do England need to look at football from the olden
days to gain success?
On a serious note the draw was a very poor result for England, but I think there must be a sense
of reality added to the score. Without a doubt Montenegro were the toughest of the sides to come
from the lower ranked nations.
"That's where I play best, that's how I was formed. In every age group at youth level, I
often played through the middle. I've been playing out wide for two years with Arsenal but feel
more at ease in the centre of the pitch."
These words were recently uttered by the only person on the Arsenal squad that could be as
strong as Cesc Fabregas in the center of midfield.
In a handful of days we'll know whether or not Liverpool FC will have new owners. Whether or not
the club will go into administration and be deducted nine points. Whether or not the club will shed
the debt Mssrs Hicks and Gillett have accrued during their disastrous tenure as owners.
Tonight will mark my first real live experience with English football, and what better way to
jump in head first than with the National team at Wembley in a meaningful match. Better yet, why
not rub shoulders with some of the top English journalists currently writing for the best papers in
The League Managers Association have hit back at Danny Murphy over his comments regarding managers
creating bad tackles. The LMA were deeply unimpressed after the Fulham midfield claimed that the
likes of Tony Pulis, Sam Allardyce and Mick McCarthy deliberately wound up players which in turn
could lead to horror tackles.
There's always much debate in the English media about who is to be England captain. It seems as
though Capello is sticking with Ferdinand, after Gerrard's successful stint with the arm band. Is
Rio a good captain? Who knows? How would he prove he was or wasn't?
Sunderland forward Darren Bent has a right to feel hard-done-by in terms of his international
career. Since making his debut under Sven-Goran Eriksson against Uruguay in March 2006, Bent has
won just six more caps. Considering he has scored 65 goals in 147 Premier League appearances since
then, you might think he would walk into any international side.
International breaks give me a chance to be a bit more reflective than usual regarding what's
going on in the world of soccer. And other than the Liverpool ownership saga, there isn't a lot
going on. I have to admit that while I have a life outside of EPL Talk and the sport of soccer, the
past week has been agony.
Wayne Rooney will continue his bid to find form when he lines up for England against Montenegro
Tuesday. In normal circumstances I have no doubt that Rooney would have pulled out of Fabio
Capello's squad for the game at Wembley, after missing the last few United games through injury,
But with Sir Alex Ferguson desperate for his star striker to return to his best, Rooney has been
encouraged to play himself in to form with his country.
Many of us know that standing terraces are disappearing from English football grounds. Whether
it's new all-seater stands being built, or clubs moving to new grounds, terraces are becoming a
thing of the past in England. To illustrate how the terraces are vanishing, watch the above video
that begins in 1955 when the â€˜new' Roots Hall was built by Southend.
The word administration will universally strike fear in football fans. Points deductions and a mass
exodus of players is something that will normally follow after a club slips in to administration,
however I am certain Liverpool won't have to suffer the costs of the dreaded A word.
British newspapers are today reporting that Liverpool slipping in to administration will mean
the collapse of the NESV takeover.
If you're jonesing for soccer during the international break and can't wait that long until you
see the next match, do the next best thing. Play FIFA 11 online. This is just a quick reminder that
an EPL Talk league has been setup on the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3.
To join the league on either system, please follow the directions below.
While their bitter rivals Liverpool are sweating over a takeover that could decide their future,
Manchester United have today revealed some worrying financial results of their own.Â The club
which for so long was the financial powerhouse of the Premier League lost a staggering Â£79.
In 2006, John W. Henryâ€”the executive fronting the New England Sports Venture's (NESV's)
attempted takeover of Liverpoolâ€”was clocked at a Â£540m net worth. This was years before the
inevitable subtractions of the global recession.
In 2009, Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, affectionately known as Sheikh Mansour and the owner of
Manchester City, was estimated at about a Â£2.
Quick, easy question: Who's the best player currently on Aston Villa?
Ashley Young is probably the first name that pops to mind. Maybe you'd say youngster Marc
Albrighton. You'd be laughed at but Emile Heskey is proving, yes, there's still some worth in his
As I type this journal entry in the smallest of one room efficiencies in Highbury, London, the
time in the upper right corner reads 7:00 AM exactly. Local time just hit noon which places my
brain somewhere in the realm of insane, sleep-deprived lunatic, or, lazy traveler, as I'm only just
sitting up from bed as Coronation Street appears on ITV2.
In the past we've asked you what was your favorite goal, but this time we want to know what one
goal gave you the most pleasure. It doesn't necessarily have to be the prettiest of goals, but the
sheer sensation of the goal being scored gave you an inordinate amount of pleasure.
For me, as part of EPL Talk's Friday Flashback Videos series, my vote is for Archie
Gemmill's goal for Scotland in the 1978 World Cup against Holland.
The official trailer for Football Manager 2011 has been released. The latest edition of the
immensely popular football management strategy game is scheduled for release in the UK on November
5. And is expected to be released in the United States before Christmas.
The trailer for Football Manager will debut on television on October 17, so here's your chance
to take a look at it before it's on the tube.
Both West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur have submitted bids to occupy the Olympic Stadium in
Stratford, England once the 2012 Summer Olympic Games are over. West Ham's bid is in conjunction
with Newham Council, while Tottenham's bid is conjunction with AEG.
So far, West Ham's bid may be more palatable because theirs includes keeping the athletic
running track around the pitch.
Several key Premier League matches scheduled for later this year were moved to accomodate the
interests of Sky Sports and ESPN in the United Kingdom. The changes have big implications for
soccer fans around the world and especially in the United States where many of you, the readers,
As Liverpool have gone 20 years without winning the top division, especially to a younger
generation, the enormity of LFC has probably never seemed quite powerful as it does to those of us
who grew up with the club as an imperious, all-conquering club who simply won everything.
It is testament to the legacy of those days that Liverpool, unlike many clubs who used to be
very successful, they still have such enormous pulling power and is still supported worldwide.
One of the highlights of the season for a lot of English football supporters is seeing the goals
of the season. It's often a difficult decision to limit it to the best goal each month during the
season. And even more so when only one goal is chosen as the winner of the best goal of that
Trevor Brooking has today claimed that Steve McClaren could one day return as the manger of the
England side. With Fabio Capello already stating that he will leave his position with the FA after
the 2012 European Championships, and the FA insisting that an Englishmen will replace him, could
â€˜The Wally with the Brolly' really return?
So John W Henry, current owner of the Boston Red Sox, is about to take over Liverpool. Being a
Florida Marlins fan, and a baseball fan in general, I'm very well aware of Mr. Henry's history as a
baseball owner, so here's my opinion about what I think he will bring to the club, both the good
and the bad.
The timing of the release of an anti-Tom Hicks video made by British film producer Mike
Jefferies and Liverpool FC supporters couldn't have been better. While a majority of the Liverpool
board has agreed to sell the club to New England Sports Ventures (NESV), owners of the Boston Red
Sox, New England Sports Network, Fenway Sports Group and Rousch Fenway Racing, Liverpool chairman
Martin Broughton revealed that "I am only disappointed that the owners have tried everything to
prevent the deal from happening and that we need to go through legal proceedings in order to
complete the sale.
While their young stars will go globetrotting with their national sides this weekend, there will
still be a sense of disappointment in the Arsenal squad. Sunday's defeat at Chelsea was a familiar
story for the Gunners, as once again they failed to get a result against their London rivals.
Fans of Liverpool Football club have finally got what they wanted with the news that George Gillett
and Tom Hicks are set to sell the club. New England Sports Ventures, fronted by self
made-millionaire John W Henry, will takeover at Anfield subject to Premier League approval.
But speaking to Liverpool fans soon after the news broke there was a general feeling of
scepticism and to be honest they have every right to be wary about another takeover.
So this is it, my last day Stateside for some time. Months of planning and preparation have led
to one final day in Lexington before an overnight flight delivers me and the Mrs.Â to Heathrow and
the United Kingdom. It's sure to be an incredible journey, one of which will be adventurous,
rewarding, rainy, rowdy and maybe even a bit romantic.
International breaks; like taxes and the poor, they are always with us; always hanging around
the street corner waiting to disrupt our domestic contentment.
Just when things have settled into a nice groove; just when the season's drama is beginning to
unfold its latest plot twists, along comes the International Break to spoil it all, putting it all
on pause for two weeks while we sit around and stare at our blank TV and at our empty grounds with
an unbearable sadness.
During a break in the action on this past Saturday's broadcast of Sunderland against Manchester
United, ESPN's commentator Ian Darke mentioned that Clint Dempsey had just scored a goal for Fulham
away at West Ham United. At first, I was ready to cry blasphemy at Darke's decision to break one of
the cardinal rules of commentating which is not to tell people what the scores are in the other
matches played at the same time.
Jesse Chula is busy packing suitcases for his upcoming journey to England to watch some of the
best soccer in person, so he asked me to step in today to write the Premier League Footballer
Of The Week post. And he sure left me with a tough feat to pick out one footballer especially
on a weekend where there were so many fantastic individual performances.
I know. I know. It's only seven games into the season, but I guarantee there wasn't anyone
predicting that after seven matches Liverpool and Everton would be desperately trying to keep their
noses ahead of Wolves and West Ham.
At some point you have to the stop the "It's only [insert number of matches] into the season"
and figure out what to do about it.
Chelsea's bounce-back from their Manchester City loss is complete, though the same questions
about Arsenal have resurfaced. On this edition of the EPL Talk Podcast, myself, Kartik Krishnaiyer
and Laurence McKenna review Sunday's match at Stamford Bridge, Liverpool's new low, Nigel de Jong
and Karl Henry's antics, and the rest of the action from around the league.
Liverpool are, quite frankly, terrible. 7 games into the season, they have played exactly two
halves of Champions League caliber football. 10 men against Arsenal was riveting, and the comeback
against Manchester United raised some hopes, although in retrospect that is probably made to look
better than it was by the score sheet.
While most of the stories surrounding Blackpool's shock win at Anfield will be angled at
Liverpool's disastrous performance, I feel the need to praise Ian Holloway's Tangerines who
continued their roller-coaster start to the season.
It's now three wins away from Bloomfield Road for Holloway's side, and for a team that many
expected to be the whipping boys of the league, their start is nothing short of sensational.
We're hours ahead of our 10 p.m. BST/5 p.m. EST/2 p.m. PST start, where myself, Kartik
Krishnaiyer and Laurence McKenna will talking about a truly interesting weekend of Premier League
action. Chelsea and Arsenal gave us a decent match at Stamford Bridge, Liverpool gave us fodder for
hysterics, and Nigel de Jong .
Before today, the last time Liverpool were in the bottom three of the Premier League was after
the opening day of the very first Premier League season. That day they lost 1-0 to Nottingham
Forest. But any team can be near the bottom after losing its opening fixture of a season. Prior to
that, the last time Liverpool sunk into the bottom three of top flight football was during the
1964-65 season when they dropped down to last but one after eight games.
Manchester City's Nigel De Jong committed another horror tackle in the Premier League Sunday.
This time against Newcastle United's Hatem Ben Arfa. The tackle resulted in a broken leg and
definitely dashes Newcastle's chances for the next few months.
What is it about the Premier League where we see so many horrible tackles and broken bones?
Tottenham playmaker Rafael van der Vaart is certainly enjoying his start to life in the Premier
League. The Dutch midfielder, who signed for Spurs on deadline day from Real Madrid, completed an
impressive week with an excellent brace in his side's 2-1 win over Aston Villa yesterday.
The double took his tally to four goals in six appearances for Tottenham, but perhaps even more
impressive has been Van der Vaart's general performances which have really caught the eye in an
ever improving Tottenham side.
Arsenal and Chelsea face each other in both club's biggest game of the season today. We'll get a
chance to see whether Chelsea's loss to Manchester City was an anomaly or whether Chelsea is as
human as they seem to be. Plus we'll get to see whether this season's Arsenal are the real deal or
Manchester United missed the chance to put some real pressure on early season pace-setters Chelsea
with a disappointing draw at Sunderland. But perhaps a more worrying consequence to come from the
game for Sir Alex Ferguson was the desperately below par performance of his side.
In normal circumstances I suppose a point at the Stadium of Light is not a bad point.
There are plenty of classic traditional matches today in the Premier League. Aston Villa versus
Tottenham, West Brom against Bolton, West Ham v Fulham, Stoke against Blackburn, Man United versus
Sunderland and others. And I expect many of them to be very entertaining.
As the action unfolds today, feel free to post your questions, observations and venting in the
comments section below.
If you run across any sports fans who call soccer a sissy sport, have them take a look at the
above video which features 33 different soccer punch ups. Some of them will make you wince. But all
of them show that the sport is not as amicable as some may think.
The above video, which is rather gruesome, features a "Best Of" collection of actual soccer
punch ups including Eric Cantona's scissor kick against a Crystal Palace spectator, Roy Keane's
disgusting challenge against Alf Inge-Haaland, Diego Maradona taking revenge for Barcelona and many
Last weekend's Premier League match between Manchester City and Chelsea, which was aired live on
ESPN2 in the United States on Saturday, September 25 at 4:30am PT/7:30pm ET, garnered a 0.3 rating
and was viewed by a TV audience of 428,000.
The game featured the debut of host Rebecca Lowe alongside pundit Steve McManaman as well as
commentary from Ian Darke.
Tottenham Hotspur today made a surprise bid to move into the Olympic Stadium after the 2012 London
Olympics. The bid now means that two Premier Leagues will be going head-to-head in a battle to be
homed in the stadium after West Ham United also submitted a bit.
Tottenham Chairman Daniel Levy admits the club are simply covering themselves as they continue
to look for a new home, Â saying: "It is only prudent and good management that we ensure that we
investigate all possible options.
For the 2010-11 Premier League season, TWI â€“ the company who provides the feed and audio from
the commentators for the matches â€“ has been playing a new catchy jingle during goal highlights
and sometimes before and after games. We finally tracked it down a few weeks ago and found that
it's a song by Kasabian called "Fire.
England was perfect in Champions League, fit to be tied in Europa League, but with the mid-week
action behind us, it's time to look forward to the weekend's fixtures, with Arsenal's trip to
Chelsea highlighting the seventh match day's schedule. On this edition of the EPL Talk podcast, I
am joined by Kartik Krishnaiyer and Laurence McKenna to look back at mid-week, forward to the
weekend of football.