EPL Talk Archives for January 2010

World Cup Group E Preview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

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In the first of eight group previews, I am joined by Laurence McKenna and Kartik Krishnaiyer to – with a little help of Andy Brassel, Simon Hill, and Simon Kuper – look at Group E.  The Netherlands are the seeded nation in a group with no easy points.  Denmark won its UEFA qualifying group.

The 7 Players Fabio Capello Should Drop From England’s World Cup Squad?

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Well the 30 players named in Fabio Capello's England squad have had multiple trainng sessions and two games to earn their place on the plane to South Africa.

Now is the time that this squad must be trimmed to 23 players, meaning that 7 players will soon receive the dreaded phone call ending their World Cup dreams for at least four years if not forever.

Japan v England: Open Thread

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In the United States, it's one of those long holiday weekends, which are a rarity. It's time to remember the fallen heroes who have died while in military service for the United States.

It's also an opportunity to spend time with the family, have BBQ's, visit the beach and more — which is why I haven't had a chance to watch the friendly this morning that involved Japan against England.

Do Top European Players View MLS as a Retirement League?

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England and Chelsea star Frank Lampard recently stated he'd consider pulling an Eddie Murphy in the 1988 John Landis vehicle Coming to America, and, well, head stateside and over to the prestigious MLS in the future. The only problem with super Frank's comments were that they were followed by the numbers 35 and 36.

Heysel Stadium Tragedy: 25 Years Later

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My memories of how I learned about the news regarding the Hillsborough Disaster and the Bradford Fire Disaster are a lot more vivid than what happened 25 years ago today in the Heysel Stadium Disaster. Part of the reason was because both the Hillsborough and Valley Parade games were played on a Saturday, while the European Cup Final of 1985 was played on a Wednesday night in Brussels.

Wayne’s World: The Importance of Rooney

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It seems every World Cup, England puts together a solid team, that somehow depends upon the brilliance of a single man, who can take the merely good players around him, and make them into world beaters. In years past it was Beckham, and this year it's Wayne Rooney.

Ask the common man why Rooney is so important to England, and he'll say it's because of his goals, of course.

Sean Wheelock Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

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Sean Wheelock covers North American for the BBC and is best known for his word on the BBC's World Football Phone-In. On today's edition of the World Cup Buzz podcast, "The Big Wheel" joins me to focus on Group C; specifically, England and the United States.

Related posts:

  1. Jonathan Wilson Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast
  2. Grant Wahl Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast
  3. Simon Hill Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

Football At Your Fingertips – Free Download For Football Fanatics

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The World Cup is agonisingly close, I seem to be spending all my time thinking, reading, or talking about it.

 However with all of the different news, blog, and sport sites available on the internet, sifting through the pile for worthwhile material can be a nightmare.

This is why I have, in association with The Gaffer, created the EPL Talk toolbar.

Portsmouth: The Latest English Club To Come To America

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Portsmouth is now officially the latest English club coming to North America as part of their preseason warm-ups. The south-coast club finished dead last in the EPL, made history by being the first Premier League club to go into administration and have been forced to sell what top-class talent they had in order to stave off collapse.

The Pros and Cons of Buying Players During a World Cup

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World Cup years give all club managers a real dilemma. Do you try and recruit all your transfers before the tournament or do you wait until it's over?

The fact is, every WC is the world's biggest advertising brochure for players, especially from less high profile nations. Anyone having a good tournament will immediately be on every manager's radar even if he's not been so before.

US Fans Are Too Concerned With Beating England

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England will meet the US squad on June 12th at Rustenburg in South Africa and fans in the US are already anticipating what will probably be one of the most watched games in the States. Unfortunately, history is not on the US squad's side. England have appeared in thirteen tournaments and made it to at least the quarterfinals seven times.

Manchester United Home Shirt for 2010-11 Season: New Photos

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Two new photos have emerged of the new Manchester United home jersey for the 2010-11 season (see above).

The new Man United home shirt is consistent with the previously uncovered image of the jersey. The shirt is still red with white trim and an old-fashioned collar. What is different, however, is that we can see the detail on the back of the show where "MUFC" is sewn in under the back of the collar.

Jonathan Wilson Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

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The Guardian's Jonathan Wilson is one of the most influential soccer writers in the English-language world, whose ability to explain the tactical side of the game has changed the way the game is covered. On today's podcast, the author of Sunderland: A Club Transformed, Behind the Curtain, and Inverting the Pyramid joins us to discuss two other areas of expertise – Eastern European football and African football – as we continue profiling the nations competing in this summer's World Cup.

End of Season Premier League Review – Part 3

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Relegation was the least of Portsmouth's problems from the season, with the on going off-the-pitch saga of the sheer volumes of money owed to the tax man. This highlights that Football is not an exception to the global financial crises we are currently in.

Bob Bradley’s Theory on How to Beat England

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Bob Bradley is a strategic thinker. He has to be. He coaches a mid-level national soccer team whose first game is against one the top ranked teams in the world – England.  Bradley knows that the US does not have enough talent to win on talent alone. If the Founding Fathers had failed and America had remained an English colony, there are probably only three Americans – Landon Donovan, Clint Dempsey and Tim Howard – who would be in contention to be among Fabio Capello's 23.

World Cup Legends #2: Cameroon 1990

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It seems like only yesterday when Italia 1990 took place, probably the first World Cup that could honestly begin to claim it was a global spectacle. As if by magic, the Cameroon side that qualified for the 14th World Cup were able to explode all over the world and show people that African international football had arrived.

EPL Talk Product Review: Fox Soccer iPhone App

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As we approach the last few weeks until we enter one full blissful month of more matches, news and analysis than we can possibly handle, here's yet another great (free) app for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch that's worth checking out.

The folks at Fox have released Fox Soccer Ticket to South Africa available in the official App store for free to keep football fans constantly in touch with all the happenings of the World Cup.

Confessions From an Obsessed England Fan Awaiting the World Cup

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Having forgone the prolific tendencies that earned me a shock interview on the world-renowned EPL Talk podcast by the ace Richard Farley for a sun-kissed, eastern seaboard Atlantic Ocean vacation, I now return like an anxiety ridden bat out of Daytona Beach, rested and tanned, but more hyper for this tournament to start than ever before.

Does England Have Enough Depth?

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Looking at England's recent friendly against Mexico, one thing that is certain is the England team lack depth. The so called fringe players were supposed to grab this chance to prove their worth but none of them did any justification to why they are deserving of a starting spot. Without a doubt, the first team are a strong unit and on their day, they can beat any team.

Andy Gray Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

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Sky Sports' Andy Gray broadcast the UEFA Champions League final on Saturday and will work with Fox Soccer Channel this summer as a World Cup analyst. Earlier this week Andy joined me to talk about both events, giving us an overview of which nations he sees as strongest ahead of the finals in South Africa.

Who is Your Premier League Cult Hero?

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The cult hero, every club has them. They are not always the best player to turn out for your team, indeed sometimes they can be among the worst. But they had that little something that meant they were held in the highest regard by the fans. Sometimes there is a personal reason why a supporter has a particular affection for a player.

Peter “No Slouch” Crouch: What Should Capello Do With This Guy?

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Another England match, another goal for Peter Crouch. Sure, the one against Mexico yesterday was hardly artful, in fact, it was illegal on two fronts: handball and offsides.

But to speak of that Mexican injustice misses the point. Peter Crouch somehow, someway finds the back of the net for England at an astonishing, befuddling, flabbergasting, headscratching, have-to-rub-your-eyes-twice-when-you-read-the-numbers-to-make-sure-your-vision-hasn't-failed-you.

EPL Talk Viewing Parties for World Cup: Wowies Sports Grill

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I'm proud to announce that EPL Talk has partnered with a local sports bar and restaurant to bring World Cup viewing parties to South Florida.

Wowies Sports Grill, located in Boca Raton, will host official EPL Talk viewing parties for the World Cup games. If you live in South Florida or will be in the area anytime during this summer's World Cup, come visit Wowies and enjoy World Cup games the way they were meant to be enjoyed — with friends, strangers and soccer fans who are as nuts about the sport as you are.

ESPN Announces Commentator Assignments for 2010 World Cup Coverage

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ESPN has revealed the commentator assignments for its coverage of the 2010 World Cup.

The big one, the match that everyone is talking about featuring England against the United States of America, will include Martin Tyler as the lead commentator and John Harkes as the co-commentator (June 12, 2:30pm ET, ABC).

This Summer May Be A Bad One For The EPL

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Will it be another Spanish summer? Or is there hope for England yet?

No, I'm not talking about winning the World Cup; instead I'm talking about the glamorization of La Liga more and more at the expense of the Premier League.

With the three biggest summer signings wrapped up or to be soon (David Villa and Cesc Fabregas to Barcelona, Jose Mourinho to Real Madrid), the likelihood of an electrifying superstar coming across the Channel looks increasingly remote.

Prediction: U.S. Will Beat England In World Cup

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Psychology is not to be underestimated when it comes to sport, especially the World Cup and soccer. In this summer's clash of the giants between the United States and England, I believe the game will not come down to who is the better team on the day, but will instead focus on which team is more psychologically prepared to overcome its opponent.

Everton Away Shirt for 2010-11 Season Revealed: Photo

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A photograph has been leaked of what looks like Everton's new away football shirt for the 2010-11 season.

The photograph (please excuse the poor quality) features a picture of a pink away shirt for the Toffees. We'll have to wait and see if the final shirt is actually pink or, due to the poor lighting, is more of an orange color.

Newcastle United Third Shirt for 2010-11 Season: Photo

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A photograph of what appears to be Newcastle United's third shirt for the 2010-11 season has been leaked on the Internet.

Designed and manufactured by Puma, Newcastle's third jersey is white with blue trim and features the words "Toon Army" sewn into the back of the collar.

Yesterday we revealed pictures of Newcastle United's new home and away jerseys.

Grant Wahl Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

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Grant Wahl is a senior soccer writer at Sports Illustrated and author of The Beckham Experiment. He joins me on this edition of the World Cup Buzz podcast to talk about the three teams representing CONCACAF: Honduras, who most will view as longshots; Mexico, who experienced a drastic turnaround after firing Sven Göran Eriksson; and the United States, whose expectations are elevated after success in their last trip to South Africa.

England 3 Mexico 1: More Questions Than Answers

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If England could pass the ball they would be dangerous. Not for the first time under Fabio Capello, or any other manager for that fact, England were outclassed by a so-called "lesser" nation, only to come through with a scoreline that would suggest a comfortable victory. This was anything but convincing and the 88,000 who were present for England's final warm up game on home soil will have every reason for concern.

Fox Scores a 1.1 Overnight Rating for Champions League Final

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The 2010 Champions League Final featuring Inter Milan against Bayern Munich drew a 1.1 overnight rating on the Fox Network.

How does that compare to last year's final on ESPN? The 2009 Final, which was shown on a Wednesday afternoon, drew a 1.0 rating. So, in comparison, Fox's rating is a disappointment.

Prediction: Soccer Will Become a Mainstream Sport in U.S. This Summer

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I'm ready to make a bold prediction. It's a simple one, but it has gigantic implications. It's this: Soccer will finally break into the mainstream and will become evolve from a niche sport to a mainstream sport in America this summer thanks to World Cup 2010.

How popular it will become is based on several variables.

Simon Hill Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

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Simon Hill is the lead commentator for Fox Sports Australia and, in addition to leading the channel's A-League efforts, covers the region's international game. Simon joined me early last week to talk about the five teams from Asian and Oceania that will be competing in South Africa: Australia, New Zealand, North Korea, South Korea and Ja

Related posts:

  1. Simon Kuper Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast
  2. Martin Tyler Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast
  3. Tim Vickery Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

Birmingham City Away Shirt for 2010-11 Season: Photos

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Photographs of Birmingham City's away shirt for the 2010-11 season have been leaked on the Internet.

Designed and manufactured by Xtep, the Chinese company that has secured an exclusive five year deal with Birmingham City, the new away shirt is white with blue trim and features a traditional v-neck collar.

Does Alberto Aquilani Have A Future At Anfield?

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Generally, after the heights climbed of the 08-09 Premier League season, Liverpool supporters thought that this past season would be their year. Surely a squad that would have won the title if not for a couple of blunders against Middlesbrough and a draw with Everton, a squad that did the double over United, including a 4-1 thrashing at the Theatre of Dreams, just needed a few small additions, just a bit more depth, and Liverpool would be restored to the summit of English football where they belonged.

England vs USA, Is It Just Another Game?

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Ever since the World Cup draw was made back in December, all eyes in the United States have been on the first game in Group C. The match against England is widely anticipated in America, but here it's just another group game. There's not the same level of excitement, sure England fans are looking forward to it, but because it's the first game, not because we're playing the United States.

Fox Soccer Channel Announces Summer Lineup

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The summer's marquee event is obviously the World Cup but after the final on July 11 many of Europe's top clubs kick off their preseason preparations. Many of these clubs, including Manchester United, Manchester City and AC Milan, will tour North America playing preseason fixtures.

Inter Milan Win Champions League Title and a Treble Final score 2-0 Highlight videos and pictures!

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Check out — http://www.philadelphiaunion.us/ — for more

Inter Milan get the win! After a ten hour delay I finally got to watch the Champions League Final. Adding on to my problems was the fact I had to watch the game in Russian. One note, trying to put yourself in a bubble all day to avoid hearing the results is almost impossible.

End of Season Review: Part 2

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An excellent season for the men from Craven Cottage, and a huge credit must go to Roy Hodgson who in two years has transformed his team from relegation fighters to Europa League finalists and fully deserves his Manager of the Year. Has also revived the careers of Bobby Zamora and Damien Duff who have both had stellar seasons.

Newcastle United Away Shirt for 2010-11 Season: Photo

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Newcastle United's away shirt for the 2010-11 season has been revealed, thanks to a leaked photo on the Internet.

The above picture shows a classy design by Puma which is blue with white trim. Designed and manufactured by Puma, the shirt features a v-neck collar. Newcastle United will be wearing its new away shirt in the 2010-11 Premier League season after being promoted from the Championship.

Newcastle United Home Shirt for 2010-11 Season: Photo

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A photograph of Newcastle United's home shirt for the 2010-11 season has been leaked on the Internet.

Newly promoted Newcastle United will feature a Puma shirt next season instead of their usual Adidas shirt. The new Newcastle United home shirt features the traditional black and white stripes that the Toon is renowned for.

Man United Transfer Rumors: Who May Be Coming And Going

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With no more English football to watch, it's off to play the transfer rumor game again. We all know many of these transfer rumors just end up frustrating us. However, it provides a little bit of a fix while we wait for the World Cup to begin.

Sir Alex and Manchester United have done pretty well for themselves in the transfer market over the years.

Blackpool Win Championship Playoff Final: In Pictures

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Congratulations to Blackpool FC for winning the Championship Playoff Final today and being promoted to the Premier League. Here are some pictures from Blackpool's day in the sunshine. More after the jump.

Related posts:

  1. Blackpool Promoted to Premier League
  2. Blackpool v Cardiff City, Championship Playoff Final: Open Thread
  3. Blackpool Dreams of Promotion to Premier League

Inter Milan v Bayern Munich, Champions League Final: Open Thread

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Ladies and gentlemen, this is it. Although there are no English clubs in the Champions League Final, Bayern Munich and Inter Milan are ready to fight for victory in one of the biggest club competition finals in the sport of soccer.

While many eyes will be fixed to what happens on the field, I'll be particularly interested in seeing how the Fox Network pulls off the first live telecast of a Champions League Final on US network television.

Blackpool Promoted to Premier League

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Blackpool's promotion to the best league in the world today was exactly what the Premier League needed. In a season with plenty of highs and lows on and off the pitch, it was down to feel-good stories from Fulham, Portsmouth and Blackpool this season to end the 2009-10 football calendar on a high.

Interview with Barney Ronay: Champions League Trailer

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If you want to get Barney Ronay's thoughts on today's Champions League Final between Inter Milan and Bayern Munich, watch this short trailer which was created and produced by the video design team of Laurence McKenna and Max Bell.

The entire interview with Barney Ronay, which was filmed inside The Guardian's offices, will be released soon.

Blackpool v Cardiff City, Championship Playoff Final: Open Thread

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Today's Championship Playoff Final is often called the richest final in the sport. The winner stands to gain around 90 million pounds, which is far more than the 36 million pound prize on offer in this afternoon's Champions League final between Inter Milan and Bayern Munich.

Needless to say, this match is massive for both Blackpool and Cardiff City.

Poll: What Match Are You Looking Forward To The Most?

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View Poll

While the Premier League season may be over and there's three weeks to go before the World Cup begins (yippee), there is the matter of three games this weekend. All of which are important for different reasons.

  • Blackpool v Cardiff City, 10am ET, Saturday, Fox Soccer Plus and FoxSoccer.

Simon Kuper Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

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One of the co-authors of Soccernomics, Simon Kuper is also an expert on Dutch soccer. On this edition of the World Cup Buzz podcast, I talk to Simon about the romance surrounding the Oranje, when we learned about the team from Euro 2008, and whether he feels a suspect defense and hold up in South Africa.

How O.J. Simpson Ruined a World Cup

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I'm definitely an optimist, but having experienced a lot of ups and downs in my life, I'm also a realist. Having said that, I have some concerns and reservations about the 2010 World Cup. And that is that I hope the tournament goes off without a hitch.

Too many times in the past, negative incidents have soured the enjoyment of World Cup tournaments.

Nike World Cup TV Ad: Full Length Video

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The much anticipated World Cup TV commercial from Nike has been released. It features a cast of soccer superstars including Wayne Rooney, Ronaldinho, Cristiano Ronaldo, Didier Drogba, Fabio Cannavaro, Franck Ribery, Andres Iniesta, Cesc Fabregas, Theo Walcott, Patrice Evra, Gerard Pique, Ronaldinho, Landon Donovan, Tim Howard and Thiago Silva.

Liverpool Transfer Rumors: Who May Be Coming and Going

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The season is over (save a Champion's League final on Saturday) and the World Cup is not starting until mid-June. If other fans are anything like me, they are looking for a fix through whatever English football scraps they can find. Transfer rumors are these scraps. Every spare moment I would usually spend watching a match, I scour the internet for news of a new signing or the inevitable story that a star player is leaving a club.

Is Arsenal Still a Big Club?

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The Man Who Still Holds the Key to Arsenal's Future

At first glance, this question looks bleedingly obvious. With their massive fan base, a beautiful new 60,000 plus seat stadium, and their years of success and trophies, Arsenal should be quite clearly considered to be a "big club.

Martin Tyler Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

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Martin Tyler will be calling this summer's World Cup for ESPN, serving as the network's lead commentator in South Africa. Earlier this week Martin joined me to talk about last week's FA Cup final, Saturday's Champions League final in Madrid, the 2018 World Cup bid, but mostly, the England national team.

Sirius/XM Radio To Broadcast All 64 World Cup Matches

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ESPN's saturation of World Cup coverage into the United States has added another source. Sirius/XM radio announced today that the sattelite radio provider will broadcast ESPN Radio's coverage of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

ESPN Radio's coverage will be spearheaded by American announcer JP Dellacamera, the primary play-by play announcer for the USA's World Cup qualifying campaign.

A Bluffers Guide To Blackpool F.C.

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So Saturday will see which one of two former top flight clubs return to the top level of English football with the Championship Play-Off final. As neither have troubled the top division in quite a long time, newer fans to Premiership football may be left scratching their heads as to who either of these sides are.

World Cup Fans: Win a FLO TV Personal Television

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We have a FLO TV Personal Television to give away to a lucky winner, courtesy of FLO TV and EPL Talk.

The FLO TV Personal Television is a personal hand-held TV that features tons of programming including ESPN's mobile coverage of the 2010 World Cup, which includes a 24-hour-a-day channel dedicated to the tournament from June 11 to July 11.

Fabregas Decision Puts Arsenal and Wenger at a Crossroads

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So Cesc is off then. So long and thanks for all the skill, the vision and the bushy eyebrows.

Is this an Arsenal crisis in the making? Wasn't Wenger building that team around Fabregas? How can you replace a player as good as that? It takes a lot of money. But Wenger doesn't like to spend a lot of money – almost nobly so in fact.

Tim Vickery Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

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On this episode of the World Cup Buzz Podcast, Richard Farley discusses with Tim Vickery the South American teams who will be competing in the 2010 World Cup. Also discussed is the Albiceleste viability of Esteban Cambiasso as well as dissecting the five South American teams who qualified for South Africa from CONMEBOL.

What is the World Cup American Experience Like?

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One of the many reasons why I love experiencing the World Cup in the United States is the passion shown by all of the different ethnicities.

During a World Cup, when I walk into an Italian pizzeria and see a poster of the Italy national team photo hanging up on the wall in the kitchen, it brings a smile to my face.

Why James Milner Should Resist Man City

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The rise and rise of James Milner has been one of the great domestic stories in recent years and, with Manchester City loitering outside Villa Park with a rumoured £24 million, it seems that the Leeds-born midfielder could be set to renew acquaintances with Wayne Rooney in Manchester, eight years after they first took the Premier League by storm.

West Ham’s Most Important Summer Beckons

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Four years ago, West Ham's fans and players were licking their wounds after coming so close to winning the clubs first piece of major silverware since 1980's F.A. Cup win. Cruelly denied by Liverpool, firstly with Steven Gerrard's incredible last minute equaliser which took the game to extra time and then penalties, it was tough to take.

Would Selling Cesc Fabregas to Barcelona Necessarily Be A Bad Thing for Arsenal?

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If, as is his reported wish, Cesc Fabregas is sold back to Barcelona, it would without doubt be a sad moment for the Premier League. Not only would it be a damning indictment of ‘The Best League In The World Ever' ™ that influential players from three of the traditional Big Four had gone to Real Madrid and Barcelona in less than a year, but it would also mean the loss of a stunningly complete, world class midfielder from the league's great aesthetes.

Poll: Should Cesc Fabregas Join Barcelona?

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Here we go again. Reports are coming out of the British media that Cesc Fabregas has told his friends that he wants to leave Arsenal and go to Barcelona. And, at the same time, Barcelona has confirmed that they want to sign Fabregas but note that they need to discuss the matter with Arsenal FC.

End of Season Team Review – Part 1

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With the Premier League season now done and dusted, there is no better time to look at the winners and losers of one of the most open and un-predicable seasons in history.


Despite another trophy-less season there has been a considerable improvement with the Gunners, showing more fight and determination despite playing a majority of the season without any central strikers.

5 Ways to Watch the World Cup While Still Getting Paid At Work

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Planning how you'll watch the 64 games of the 2010 World Cup this summer is something you should not take lightly. The tournament is just as much of a marathon for the soccer viewer at home as it is for those members of the world media covering the tournament for their readers and listeners back home.

Manchester United Away Shirt for 2010-11 Season: New Photo

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A new photograph of Manchester United's away jersey for the 2010-11 season has been leaked on the Internet.

The new design, which looks much better in this picture than the close-up photo, features a white shirt with black and red trim. Designed and manufactured by Nike, and sponsored by Aon, the new shirt will be worn for the first time during Manchester United's summer tour of North America.

Tottenham Hotspur Home Shirt for 2010-11 Season: New Photo?

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A new photograph of what may be Tottenham Hotspur's home jersey for the 2010-11 season has been leaked on the Internet. Whether it's fake or not is unknown but it's very similar to the design of the shirt which was worn in a behind-the-scenes photo shoot recently at White Hart Lane.

Raphael Honigstein Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

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On Monday, it was announced that an ankle injury suffered in Saturday's FA Cup Final would keep German national team captain Micheal Ballack out of the World Cup. Joining us to talk about that as well the Nationalmannschaft's chances this summer is the Guardian and Sports Illustrated's Raphael Honigstein.

Bolton Look To Build On Coyle’s Good Start

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There are green shoots of recovery around the Reebok Stadium, after several winters of discontent under Gary Megson. With Owen Coyle's arrival, suddenly Bolton Wanderers are playing football again and trying to win games, rather than bore teams to death and hoof it skywards. Megson's long ball banality has no place in modern football and I feel sorry for the next bunch of fans that have to suffer the tedium of his tactical ineptitude.

Ballacks Pain Of Missing The World Cup

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You have to feel for a player of the calibre of Michael Ballack and for fans of Germany. Things haven't always gone swimmingly for Ballack at Stamford Bridge since he joined in 2006, but there is no doubt he is Germany's most accomplished player of his generation. Be it at Munich, Leverkusen or the national side, Ballack has been one of the most consistent performers in the last 10 years of European football.

7 Things to Fill Your Soccer Void Until the World Cup

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The Premier League season has ended, FA Cup Final is over, Europa League has a champion, the other big leagues of Europe have also finished. With just the Champions League final left, there is an unpleasant empty feeling that comes from a weekend without Premier League games that I haven't felt for 9 months (minus international breaks).

8 Rules of World Cup ‘Fight Club’

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Living in the States, I've experienced six World Cups here. And each of them has been a battle.

In each instance, there have been soccer naysayers who dismiss the relevance of the tournament. They make cheap jokes about the sport. They rely on the past and still think that hooliganism is rife.

2010 World Cup Coverage Plans From EPL Talk

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Between now and the end of July, EPL Talk will be your headquarters online for World Cup news and coverage. We have so much planned — which I've teased on an EPL Talk Podcast episode and in a recent interview – so let me bring you up to speed on what we have in store for YOU:

Daily World Cup podcast

Beginning today, the World Cup Buzz Podcast will bring you daily latest news and analysis of the 2010 World Cup.

Andy Brassell Interview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

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Kicking off the World Cup Buzz podcast's two months of coverage, the Talk network welcomes back Andy Brassell, one of the media's leading experts on professional football in Western Europe. Andy joined me late last week to talk about the nations from his coverage area who will be competing in South Africa as well as offer a pick for this summer's finals.

2009-10 Best Premier League Players and Managers

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During the past few weeks, over 58,000 soccer fans from around the world voted in the 2009-10 EPL Awards, a readers choice awards competition that recognizes the best in Premier League football — everything from players and managers to podcasts, blogs, commentators and TV shows of the 2009-2010 season.

2009-10 Best Premier League Podcasts, TV and Radio Coverage

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Martin Tyler, Best EPL TV Commentator

The 2009-2010 EPL Awards have concluded. And more than 58,000 of you have voted to pick the best EPL-related TV, radio and podcast shows. We as supporters of Premier League clubs consume massive amounts of media – whether it's matches on television, listening to radio programmes or tuning in to our favorite English football podcasts.

2009-10 Best Premier League Blogs, Websites and Books

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More than 58,000 of you voted in the 2009-10 EPL Awards. In the category of best Premier League blogs and websites, we recognized some of the best online content available. Important categories such as the best EPL writer, best EPL blogger and more. The competition was fierce but the victors have been identified.

Chelsea Double Ends 16 years of FA Cup Hurt

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If taken in context this title may, I confess be a little misleading due to Chelsea's recent success in the competition. As holders there has been little FA Cup hurt experienced by Chelsea fans in the last few years.

I am however speaking from a personal perspective, since queuing up in the early hours of the morning as a 7 year old in 1994; I have been unable to get a ticket for a final since.

Chelsea Double Ends 16 years of FA Cup Hurt

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If taken in context this title may, I confess be a little misleading due to Chelsea's recent success in the competition. As holders there has been little FA Cup hurt experienced by Chelsea fans in the last few years.

I am however speaking from a personal perspective, since queuing up in the early hours of the morning as a 7 year old in 1994; I have been unable to get a ticket for a final since.

Five Reasons Why England Will Fail in South Africa

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Many English fans have a schizophrenic sensation going on every fourth May. On the one hand, every four years English fans enthuse how this team is the "best in a generation" with all their great players having their career peaks at just the right time. On the other hand, international tournaments have brought nothing but pain to England for over 40 years, and there is always this nagging feeling that England is just not as good as the rest of the major nations.

World Cup Buzz Podcast: An Introduction

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EPL Talk is proud to announce that tomorrow we'll be launching our newest podcast, World Cup Buzz, which will bring you daily coverage of the 2010 World Cup.

To tell you more about the new podcast, World Cup Buzz Podcast host Richard Farley discusses the upcoming guests, schedule and more in the above video.

Five Reasons Why Brazil Won’t Win the World Cup and Five Reasons Why England Could

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Predictions, right or wrong go hand in hand with the World Cup like some beautifully ironic couple you see walking down the street. At first glance, the awkwardly short man who's pulled a 5′8 blond model strikes a questionable chord with your intellect.

You immediately resort to predicting and analyzing (if you're honest with yourself) how you can land said women and how short man has figured out the secret.

Kiss England’s World Cup 2018 Bid Goodbye

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You may as well kiss England's chances of winning the 2018 World Cup bid goodbye. England's 2018 World Cup bid lay in tatters this weekend after The Mail On Sunday newspaper revealed that FA Chief Lord Triesman accused Spain and Russia of trying to bribe World Cup referees.

And today, it was announced that Triesman has quit as chairman of the 2018 World Cup bid.

Honor In Defeat – Avram Grant and Portsmouth FC

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Avram, You're The Man.

Today's FA Cup Final came to an end, with this year's league champions Chelsea edging recently relegated Portsmouth FC by a Didier Drogba goal to nil.

While the game was dominated by Chelsea, Pompey did their best to frustrate the champions, and David James had an absolute blinder, which will serve him well with the World Cup just weeks away.

Wolverhampton Wanderers Home Shirt for 2010-11 Season: Photo

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Wolves last week unveiled their new home shirt for the 2010-11 season.

Designed and manufactured by Burrda, a Swiss sportswear company, the new home strip for Wolves features their typical gold color with black trim. Judging by the above picture, the new jersey is quite elegant and features an old-fashioned collar.

1972 League Cup Final, Chelsea v Stoke: Video Flashback

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If you want to see how much soccer has changed and what a cup final was like in 1972, this classic video showing the first ten minutes of footage from the 1972 League Cup Final is a must-see.

The video looks like it's straight out of The Damned United with the tracksuit jackets and how dated everything looks including the shaggy haircuts.

1991-92 FA Cup Semi-Final, Portsmouth v Liverpool: Video Flashback

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In the build-up to the FA Cup Final today between Portsmouth and Chelsea, I thought it'd be interesting to enter the time machine and to go back to 1992 to watch the first ten minutes of the television broadcast of Portsmouth versus Liverpool in the FA Cup Semi-Final from Arsenal's Highbury Stadium.

Chelsea v Portsmouth, FA Cup Final: Open Thread

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In what is the last big match of the 2009-10 season featuring two Premier League teams, the FA Cup Final from Wembley is always a special occasion especially today with two amazing story lines featuring the rags of Portsmouth against the riches of Chelsea.

Can Chelsea win the double or can Portsmouth somehow find a way to beat the Premier League champions?

Best of 2009-10: EPL Talk Podcast

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As we at the EPL Talk Podcast shift into World Cup gear, it is a good time to look back at some of the audio highlights of the season. Thanks to the efforts of Paul Scanling (who you may know as the user Atlanta Pompey), we bring you a Best of 2009-10 episode, featuring highlights from interviews with Martin Tyler, Robbie Earle, Rebecca Lowe, and Chuck Culpepper (amongst others).

Chelsea Wins 2009-10 FA Cup Final: In Pictures

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Congratulations to Chelsea on beating Portsmouth 1-0 to win the 2009-10 FA Cup Final. Enjoy the photogrphs. More pictures after the jump.

Related posts:

  1. Chelsea v Portsmouth, FA Cup Final: Open Thread
  2. Chelsea Wins the 2009-10 Premier League Title: In Pictures
  3. Congratulations Chelsea, 2009-10 Premier League Champions

Final Chance to Vote for the Best of the Premier League 2009-10 Season

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Only 24 hours remain before the 2009-10 EPL Awards close, so there's still time to get your vote in to choose the best of the 2009-10 Premier League season — everything from managers, players, podcasts, blogs, commentators, TV shows and more. Practically every EPL-related.

There are some really tight races which will go down to the wire.

World Cup 2010 Fantasy Football: Sign Up Today

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Today marks the launch of EPL Talk's World Cup 2010 Fantasy Football game which it's free to register and you have the opportunity to win big cash prizes.

The concept is simple. Pick your best 11 from the 32 competing teams and see how they do in the 2010 World Cup. And then enter a public league so you can compete against 11 soccer fans from around the world.

World Cup 2010: Roy Hodgson Gives England A Timely Lesson

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Just in time for the World Cup, Fulham manager Roy Hodgson showed England how to lose with dignity. That's important because with history as the guide England will flatter to deceive in making the knockout stages, only to be humiliated in a penalty kick shootout.

With the World Cup in South Africa looming and England's predictable fall into an abyss of self-pity and wallowing in perceived injustice, I want to thank Hodgson for showing a better way.

Blackpool Dreams of Promotion to Premier League

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The Coca-Cola Championship Playoff Final is called the richest match in football as the winner will be promoted to the so called glory land of the EPL – and with it all the riches ... estimated at 90 million pounds sterling.

SO who are Blackpool, the team I support... because next season you could see a team you have hardly heard of and an invasion of tangerine on your TV.

Manchester City Add Portland Timbers Friendly to US Tour Schedule

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Manchester City will play Portland Timbers in a friendly in July as part of their US preseason tour.

Starting July 13, City will begin a nine-day training camp at Nike's headquarters outside Portland, Oregon, prior to leaving for the east coast of their US tour.

"Not only is Nike's excellence in sport, research and product development world renowned, but in their Portland campus they have some of the finest training facilities in America," said City manager Roberto Mancini.

Special 1 TV Returning to TV Courtesy of BBC 3

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Special 1 TV, the cult TV show that was a hit on Setanta Sports from December 2007 until May 2009, is making a triumphant return to the airwaves this June courtesy of BBC. The new show, still under the "Special 1 TV" moniker, will be available on BBC 3.

The show was a bigger success in the United States than the United Kingdom.

England Fans Who Lack Faith in Fabio Capello are Unjustified and Premature

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I've grown tired of the naysayers, the detractors, the doubters and the downtrodden members of the English media and England fans over the last few days who have blindly and prematurely questioned Fabio Capello's initial 30 man World Cup squad.

After perusing the who's who of English media types and top journos, questionable words and phrases like "bold move", "maverick", "alarm", "gamble" and "compromised" are currently plastered over articles inciting fear in the hearts of England fans and bravery in the hearts of Americans, Algerians and Slovenians.

Top 5 Favorite Pompey Moments From Past 5 Years

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With the FA Cup Final only days away, and every Portsmouth fan like myself trying to convince ourselves we have a chance to defeat a club like Chelsea that's clicking on all cylinders, it saddens me to think that we'll be going down to the Championship next season. Our time in the top-flight has, at times, felt like being an emigrant on a passenger steamship who snuck into first class to see how the rich lived, only to be tossed back to steerage when discovered.

2009-10 Premier League Table Predictions: How Did We Do?

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When I sat down in August 2009 to predict what the final table for the 2009-10 Premier League would look like, little did I know what a disastrous season lay ahead for Liverpool. At the time, many pundits were predicting that Chelsea would finish in top place. And I was one of them especially after how rejuvenated they looked on their Summer 2009 tour.

Manchester City and Bolton Announce North America Tour Dates

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After being overlooked for so many summers, the United States will have several Premier League clubs coming to North America in July. In addition to Manchester United confirming a tour of North America and Tottenham Hotspur playing a couple of friendlies, Manchester City today announced additional tour dates, while Bolton Wanderers today announced a three-game tour of North America.

Unlucky Everton Fall Short Once Again

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What a season we've had. The race for the title couldn't have been more interesting. The race for fourth place has even been better this season. In probably one of the most competitive season in terms of the chase for the last champions' league spot, Tottenham capped a brilliant season by finishing fourth with Man City running a close fifth.

Why John Terry’s Foot Injury May Be A Blessing In Disguise For England

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John Terry injured his right foot in training today and has gone to the hospital for a precautionary scan, reveals the Chelsea website. The seriousness of the injury will be known tomorrow when results are released, but the news will be very worrying for Chelsea and England supporters who will be hoping that Terry mends in time.

Where is Paul Scholes Heading This Summer?

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According to Fabio Capello, quoted in The Independent newspaper, Paul Scholes was **this** close to being selected for the England World Cup squad this summer, but Scholes — says the England boss — declined the offer because he wanted to stay with his family.

So where will Scholes be this summer with his family?

Are You A Football Turncoat?

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There has been a fair bit of discussion on the message boards of late regarding what makes a true EPL supporter. There seems to exist this notion that one cannot be a true supporter of a club if they were not born and raised in close proximity to the club's home pitch and have not at some point in their life rolled around on the grass of said fine pitch.

Gianfranco Zola Serves Coffee to Sky Sports Reporters

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Love or hate West Ham United's performances on the pitch this season, you have to admire Gianfranco Zola. He's always been the perfect gentleman both on the pitch — where he graced the Stamford Bridge pitch — and off the pitch, where he dealt with the pressure well at Upton Park

And now Tuesday, when Sky Sports reporters descended on his house to interview the Italian legend, Zola didn't scowl at the media but instead served them coffee on a tray.

Bradford City Stadium Fire Disaster: 25 Years

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Twenty five years ago on this date, 56 people tragically died when a fire erupted at Bradford City's Valley Parade ground.

The day was supposed to be one of celebration for Bradford who had just won the Third Division trophy. However as the game against Lincoln progressed, a fire began just before half-time in the stand that ran alongside the pitch.

EPL Talk Product Review: The Official England App

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In the days and weeks leading up to the biggest sporting tournament on the planet, the avenues available to follow the World Cup will present themselves in an influx of technology not seen this side of a bad sci-fi film involving the world's game. Since a bad sci-fi film involving the world's game can't possibly exist, all involved will have to put up with my sad and futile attempts to be funny and simply read my explanation on what's sure to be (yet another) pretty good Apple application for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

West Ham Sack Gianfranco Zola: Who Should Replace Him?

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Gianfranco Zola was sacked as manager of West Ham United this morning. While this hardly comes as surprising news for followers of the club and the Premier League, it's still quite a shame for a professional who showed so much promise yet for a team that played so poorly during the 2009-10 season.

Will Fulham Become the 2001 New England Patriots Or the 2005-06 Middlesbrough?

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Fulham are on the brink of history. On Wednesday, they will be playing in the Europa League Final against Atletico Madrid. Win or lose this match, Fulham will leave some sort of historical mark. The question is which historical direction will Fulham go?

If they win this Final, I would compare this season to the 2001 New England Patriots.

What Does Champions League Actually Mean to Tottenham?

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So Tottenham are in the Champions League.

Well, not quite. They are not yet qualified to the group stage, which is what most people tend to mean by the Champions League, but for arguments sake let's assume they are. What does it actually mean?

An increase in revenue, indeed.

Stoke Keep Improving But Can They Shift The Troublecausers?

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Stoke once again have compounded the critics and not only avoided the dreadful "second season syndrome", but actually improved their points and placing from last season. It's a fantastic achievement for the club and its passionate and noisy fans. I have to say that as an away fan at either the Brittania Stadium or the old Victoria Ground, listening to the Stoke fans regal you a blast of "Delilah" is an experience you have to witness.

Chelsea Win The League: A Fans View of the Final Day

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As everyone with more than a passing interest in the game will be aware Chelsea won the Premiership on the 9th of May. For this reason I have decided to tell anyone who wants to listen my match day experiences, rather than regurgitate the match reports and analysis of the mainstream media.

Fulham Need To Avoid The Fairytale Turning Into A Nightmare

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To some, there's nothing more condescending than when their team are described as plucky, punching above there weight or a battling side. Each of the terms generally means the same thing when used towards a football club. You've punched above your weight and sooner rather than later, you're going to get brought down to earth.

Daily Ticker: Hodgson Wants Final Delayed, Championship Playoff Update, More

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Fulham Boss Hodgson Wants Europa League Final Postponed

With the Icelandic volancano rearing its ashy head over the weekend Eurpean air travelers are once again experiencing serious delays and restrictions. Fulam skipper Roy Hodgson has asked UEFA to postpone their Europa League final in Hamburg against Athletico Madrid on Wednesday unless the situation improves.

BBC Unveils Incredible TV Promo for 2010 World Cup

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Some of the words that come to mind when I view this video are stupendous, incredible and goosebumps. It's BBC's promo video for the 2010 World Cup that it'll be airing across its television channels to get everyone excited about the Beeb's coverage of the tournament. And, as usual, it's incredibly well done and leaves me wanting more!

Why Paul Scholes Should Be In England’s World Cup Squad

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If Fabio Capello is in the mood to talk players out of international retirement as seems to be the case with Jamie Carragher, perhaps the Italian could go around to Paul Scholes house for a cappuccino and one of those nice little almond biscuits and make him an offer he can't refuse.

Premier League Footballer of the Week, Gameweek 38

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  • Iron Man 2 and Mother's Day
  • Champions FC

Football played second fiddle this weekend to Mother's Day and Robert Downey Jr. & Co. running around saving the world from a Russian villain. Quite the opposite event played out across England as another Russian, this time Roman Abramovich and not Mickey Rourke, emerged from the rubble and ashes of 38 Premier League matches as victor.

Who Will Keep Goal For England?

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England have always had a great tradition for goalkeepers, the likes of Gordon Banks and Peter Shilton are legends, and David Seaman was dependable for well over a decade and kept goal for his country in four straight major tournaments. However, in recent years, the likes of David James and Paul Robinson have wrestled for the number one shirt with neither putting in outstanding performances.

What the World Cup Means To Me: Download the Free eBook

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It gives me great pleasure to announce the launch of a brand-new eBook today entitled What The World Cup Means To Me. The free eBook, published by EPL Talk sister site World Cup Buzz, features stories from some of the top 21 soccer writers and personalities around the world including Soccernomics author Simon Kuper, BBC World Football Phone-In's Tim Vickery, ESPN's Rebecca Lowe and Tommy Smyth, GolTV's Phil Schoen and many others.

Weekend, Season Review Show: EPL Talk Podcast

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Chelsea's 8-0 victory over Wigan put an exclamation point of their title winning statement, taking the English Premier League's championship back from Manchester United after its three year sojourn at Old Trafford. On this edition of the EPL Talk podcast, myself, Laurance McKenna and Kartik Krishnaiyer discuss the result a Stamford Bridge but quickly shift our focus to the broader world of the EPL season.

Champions Once Again, Chelsea FC Can Finally Move Beyond Mourinho

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Grant. Scolari. Hiddink.

Since the acrimonious departure of Chelsea's revered and beloved Jose Mourinho, who gave the club its first taste of sustained glory, a revolving door of big-name managers have cast a dark cloud over Stamford Bridge. This is not to say said coaches came and went without accomplishment.

Chelsea Wins the 2009-10 Premier League Title: In Pictures

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The above photographs feature Chelsea celebrating their third league title in six years. The Blues won in triumphant style and now look forward to this Saturday's FA Cup Final against Portsmouth where they have the opportunity to win the double.

More pictures after the jump.

Related posts:

  1. Congratulations Chelsea, 2009-10 Premier League Champions
  2. ESPN2 TV Ratings For 2009-2010 English Premier League: Aug to Jan
  3. 2009-2010 Premier League Table Predictions

Man United Fans Launch Anti-Glazer Protest: In Pictures

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Manchester United supporters launched a very loud and visible protest against the club's owners, the Glazers, Sunday during their last match of the season against Stoke City.

At half-time and at full-time, the sound of Man United supporters whistling their disapproval against the Glazer family was deafening.

Steven Gerrard Pushes Fan After Hull City Game

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At the end of Hull City's nil-nil game against Liverpool Sunday, supporters ran on to the pitch but unfortunately there were no stewards to escort the players off the field. As a result, Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard was encircled by supporters and demonstrated his frustration by pushing one teen away (see above video).

Congratulations Chelsea, 2009-10 Premier League Champions

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Congratulations to Chelsea on an amazing 8-0 win against Wigan Athletic as they removed any doubts on the final day of the season whether they were worthy Premier League champions or not. They are.

The goalscorers on the final day of the season for Chelsea:

  • Didier Drogba, hat-trick
  • Nicolas Anelka, two
  • Salomon Kalou, one
  • Frank Lampard, one, and
  • Ashley Cole, one.

Fox Soccer Plus Fails Manchester United on Final Day of the Season

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While the first forty-five minutes on Sunday were not kind to Manchester United in their hopes of winning the title, one thing was completely unexpected... If you were watching the game on Fox Soccer Plus, Manchester United's game hadn't even kicked off before Chelsea took a 1-0 lead thanks to the strike of Anelka.

Where Manchester City Needs To Go From Here

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Despite their loss to Tottenham earlier in the week, Manchester City fans should still have plenty to feel good about going into the summer. The English press was all too happy in vilifying the Sheik Mansour's tactics of overpaying for players and trying to buy themselves a Champions League spot, but they did well to stick together and get to the brink of their goal.

Is Hargreaves World Cup Fit, or an England Misfit?

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As reports continue to surface that Gareth Barry may not be fully fit in time for the World Cup, Owen Hargreaves chances of boarding the plane with the rest of the England squad for South Africa have apparently increased. Despite making only one appearance for Manchester United in the past 20 months, a 2 minute cameo against Sunderland last weekend, Fabio Capello appears to see a role for the tough tackling midfielder.

Should Fabio Capello Take a Risk or Two?

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Throughout the whole qualifying campaign, Capello always had an idea how his team were going to play and how the personnel he brought in suited his style and blueprint very well. Fast forward a few months later, he is facing a conundrum regarding the squad he is going to take to the World Cup.

Interview with Grant Best, Director of ESPN’s Soccer Coverage

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EPL Talk Podcast host Richard Farley recently conducted a brilliant interview with ESPN director Grant Best on our sister podcast, Major League Soccer. The interview was so good that I wanted to be sure to share it with you here on EPL Talk. The topics that Best and Farley cover are perfect for the EPL Talk audience.

Wolverhampton Wanderers: Home and Away Kits for 2010-11 Season

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Wolverhampton Wanderers have switched their kit manufacturers from Le Coq Sportif to a Swiss company named Burrda for the next three years. This Sunday, Wolves will wear their new 2010-11 away kit for the first time in their final game of the season at home against Sunderland.

The new Wolves home kit (pictured above) retains the same stylistic features and colors that make Wolves Wolves.

One Night In Turin: Film Trailer

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The definitive book of the 1990 World Cup was All Played Out, the magnificent work by author Pete Davies who beautifully captured the spirit of the tournament and summed up the magical journey that England undertook against all odds and how they tragically fell at the last hurdle on the dreaded penalty kicks.

Write for EPL Talk: Last Call

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There are only 34 days to go before the World Cup kicks off, so we want to give you the final opportunity before the biggest tournament begins to invite you to write for EPL Talk.

Moving forward, we'll continue to cover the Premier League (and all of the news this summer regarding transfers, preseason friendlies, TV coverage news and more), but during the World Cup we'll also be covering the England national team as well as analyzing the TV coverage of the tournament.

ESPN Releases “Power of 10″ World Cup Ad

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ESPN has released its third commercial for its "One Game Changes Everything" World Cup Campaign.  The video above titled "Power of 10″ has hit the airways today showcasing all the best players to have ever worn the number, as well as those looking to impact the tournament this summer.

Daily Ticker: Glazers Reject Latest Bid, Benitez’s Outlook Improves, More

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Glazers reject £1.5 billion bid

The Guardian is reporting The Glazer family, maligned owners of Manchester United, has adamantly rejected a £1.5 billion bid from "a secretive Middle East consortium" as the American owners remain in in their claim that the club is not for sale.

EPL TV Viewing Guide: Gameweek 38

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Well, we didn't get the full panoply of last-game drama. Relegation is done and dusted, the four Champions League places are settled, and it seems quite likely that John Terry will be lifting the trophy at about 1pm ET Sunday afternoon.

But Chelsea still needs a result against a hot-and-cold Wigan side.

Fantasy Premier League Tips: Gameweek 36

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It's the final countdown duh duh duhhh duh etc. So now is your last chance to make a difference to that all important fantasy football position.

The Premier League season may be effectively done and dusted but there's still plenty to play for in fantasy land, so walk this way for some top tips to help you end your campaign in style.

Will Fulham and Burnley Put Up Much Fight Against Arsenal and Spurs this Weekend?

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As we head into the last games of the season, beyond the glamour battle between Manchester United and Chelsea at the top, there is surprisingly little else being contested. Hull, Burnley and Portsmouth are going down. Chelsea, ManU, Arsenal and Tottenham are going to the Champions League.

Year End Review Show: EPL Talk Podcast Open Thread

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We have one more podcast left in the Premier League season, and Kartik Krishnaiyer, Laurence McKenna, the Gaffer and myself need your help, as we make Monday morning's podcast our Year in Review show. Â As we talk about whether Chelsea got their title or Spurs were able to pass Arsenal, we will be looking back at the players, clubs and coaches that made the 2009-10 season special.

Weekend Preview Show: EPL Talk Podcast

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Chelsea is a win away from unseating Manchester United as Premier League champions, but on this edition of the EPL Talk podcast, the panel spends most of their time looking at the past. Myself, Laurence McKenna, and Kartik Krishnaiyer start this edition of the Weekend Preview Show by talking about the Premier League's brave new world, where clichés are no longer truisms and Spurs are a top four team.

Premier League Season Finale: Live Blog and Chat

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With the last weekend of the EPL season approaching the only race yet to be decided is the one at the top. Chelsea sit one point above Manchester United with a superior goal difference and . All 20 teams in the Premier League kick-off at 10 am EST. The Blues control their own destiny, a win at home against Wigan would bring the title back to Stamford Bridge for the first time since 2006.

Reading The Tea Leaves Of Premier League TV Schedules

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Seeing which Premier League games are scheduled on television is often like reading tea leaves. The TV networks guess which matches will generate the most number of viewers and will pick those if they have first dibs. In the case of this Sunday's Premier League season finale, you can read a lot into the decisions made by Fox and ESPN.

Manchester United Summer Tour of North America Confirmed

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One of America's worst kept soccer secrets has finally been confirmed. Manchester United will be touring North America this summer and playing five games across the continent from Canada to the United States and finally to Mexico.

  • Celtic v Manchester United, July 16, Rogers Centre, Toronto
  • Philadelphia Union v Manchester United, July 21, Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia
  • Kansas City Wizards v Manchester United, July 25, Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas
  • MLS All-Stars v Manchester United, July 28, Reliant Stadium, Houston
  • Chivas v Manchester United, July 30, Guadalajara

"It's great to be going back to North America," Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson said.

Premier League Preview – May 9

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You don't need to pour over the table.

You don't need a bunch of fancy statistics, charts or graphs.

You just need to remember this on the last Sunday of the 2009-2010 EPL season:

  • If Chelsea beats Wigan at home, the Blues are champions
  • If Chelsea loses, and Manchester United beats Stoke City at Old Trafford, United are champions
  • If Chelsea draws, and Manchester United beats Stoke City at Old Trafford, United are champions
  • If Chelsea loses, and Manchester United draws, Chelsea wins the title (I don't think they're going to lose 9-0, which is what it would take to overturn the goal difference)
  • If they both lose, win or draw, the title is Chelsea'sÂ

There's some other stuff to work out, like who's finishing third, fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh, so let's dive in.

What Will Be Your Online Destinations During World Cup 2010?

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Many of us will wake up on Monday morning feeling slightly depressed that the 2009-10 Premier League season is over. All that'll remain from the English football season will be the FA Cup Final, Europa League Final and playoff matches in the Football League. Not to diminish those exciting events, but many of us will be keeping one eye on the upcoming World Cup which will be just 32 days away.

Fact or Fiction: West Ham United Wage Bill Leaked

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Someone from the Daily Star has either gone to a heck of a lot of trouble and has a fair bit of time on their hands, or West Ham United, more specifically, Sullivan and Gold, have a good bit of cleaning house and cutting wages to do this off season. Unsure if this "alleged official document" is fact or fiction, but the 2009-2010 West Ham wage bill has been leaked and is sure to raise a few eyebrows from Hammers fans.

The Gaffer, Christopher Harris Interview: EPL Talk Podcast

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As we approach the end of the Premier League season, we continue to take inventory of the season and the site. There is no better person to do that with than our own icon, The Gaffer. On today's edition of the EPL Talk podcast, I talk to Christopher Harris about his view of the Premier League season, what he has planned for the future of the Talk network of sites, and what he's looking forward to in this summer's World Cup.

Poll: Who Deserves To Win The Title? Chelsea or Man Utd?

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It's hard to believe that the Premier League season is almost over. In my opinion, it's been one of the better one in years and, deservedly so, the race goes down to the final day of the season to determine the champion. Both Manchester United and Chelsea have been sensational for most of the season.

A Fall From Grace: Liverpool FC

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Liverpool's Season Crashes and Burns.

With the 09/10 season coming to a close, there have been great cinderella stories, in the form of Birmingham FC and their very efficient promotion season in the Premier League, to Fulham reaching the Europa League final, to England's ‘Big Four' finally being broken.

Peter Crouch Sends Spurs To Europe and Gives Capello a Message

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Tottenham Hotspur has done it. They've struck gold by qualifying for the Champions League for the first time in their history. And they did it in style at the ground of the club who had the best chance of beating them to the honor.

Before Peter Crouch headed the ball into the back of the Manchester City net, I was planning on writing an article about him tonight.

Spurs Players Drench Harry Redknapp With Ice Bucket

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It's party time for Tottenham supporters around the world and especially in North London after Spurs beat Manchester City in a thoroughly entertaining game.

In the post match interview on Sky Sports, the Tottenham players crept up on Harry Redknapp and drenched him with the contents of an ice bucket while ‘Arry was being interviewed.

Daily Ticker: Championship Playoff Schedule Set, Chelsea Move On Torres, More

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Playoff Schedule For Premier League Promotion Set

Newcastle United and West Bromwich Albion have already booked their tickets to the top flight next season but the EPL still has room for one more club. Teams that finished 3-6 will compete in a playoff for that final promotion spot in the Coca-Cola Championship Playoff.

Brian Laws Turns Historic Double in 2009-10 Season

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As the 2009-10 season comes to a close, let us take a moment to honor a manager who set himself apart from his peers, achieving a rare and historic feat that deserves to be recognized.

Yes, congratulations are in order for Brian Laws, who managed to get TWO teams relegated this season.

Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspur: Open Thread

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Today's Manchester City against Tottenham Hotspur match has a cup final feel about it. Even people who are Manchester United and Chelsea supporters have expressed to me how excited they are about watching this match. On paper, both teams are pretty equal so let's hope we see an attacking, free-flowing game with plenty of goals.

Shocking Display of Support from Football Fans Across Europe Blight End to Domestic Seasons

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Call me a naive American, call me a football purest, or call me a relatively young football supporter, but some of the scenes emanating across Europe this past weekend, more specifically England's Premier League and Italy's Serie A, have caused football to take a minor step back as our community prepares to plunge itself upon the world's stage in just over a month.

Jesse Chula Interview: EPL Talk Podcast

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Jesse Chula is one of the best and most prolific authors at EPL Talk, but to this point, his work for the site has been confined to the written word. On this edition of the EPL Talk podcast, Chula transcends screen and commits to the track to talk to me about his history with the league and his thoughts on the Premier League's season.

Fox Gets Chelsea and Man Utd Season Finales

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Fox has just revealed the Premier League season finale matches it'll be showing on its soccer networks Sunday. They'll be showing the two most important games. Chelsea against Wigan Athletic (11am ET) will air on Fox Soccer Channel, while Fox Soccer Plus will televise Manchester United versus Stoke City (also 11am ET).

World Cup Legends#1: Just Fontaine

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Despite the superstars that have graced the World Cup over the decades, there is one record that may never be beaten by any player ever again. Only 3 times has a player scored double figures in a World Cup tournament, once in 1954, Sandor Kocsis scored 11, in 1970 the legendary Gerd Muller scored 10 goals.

Do Liverpool Football Club A Favour Rafa:QUIT

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All great relationships come to an end, the natural course having run as far as it can. Sometimes they start passionately and brightly and quickly burn away to nothingness. Sometimes, they are a slowly burning and taut affair that consumes all within them in a supernova of passion oblivious to all around them.

Daily Ticker: Coventry sacks Coleman, Wigan Promise To Fight Chelsea, More

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Coventry City fires Chris Coleman

Coventry City have fired manager Chris Coleman following City's relegation to Coca-Cola League One. The move came following a 4-0 thrashing at home courtesy of Watford that ensured a 19th place finish for The Sky Blues. The former Fulham manager took over for Ian Dowie when City sat in 20th place in February 2008 and successfully kept the club in the Championship for the past two seasons.

Sky Again Wins Premier League Rights for Football First Highlights

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  • Yeah, It's a lot of money again for the Premier League

Having reported last week that Yahoo won the exclusive UK online highlights rights, it's also been confirmed that the only other outstanding contract for the 2010 to 2013 round, the "long form" highlights package, has again been won by Sky.

Manchester United to Play Friendly in Kansas City

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Manchester United is reportedly scheduled to play a friendly against the Kansas City Wizards on July 25, most probably at Arrowhead Stadium, as part of the Red Devils' summer tour of the United States.

The news of Manchester United's friendly in Kansas City comes from a tweet (pictured above) posted on Twitter by a communications intern at the Wizards.

Poll: Will Man City or Tottenham Hotspur Win?

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Wednesday's match between Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur (2:55pm ET, ESPN2) is enormous not only because it'll help decide which club will qualify for the Champions League, but it's also an important crossroads in the history of these two important English clubs.

The victor in the race for fourth may decide who will rise to the throne and be accepted into the Big Four to replace Liverpool.

Chuck Culpepper Interview: EPL Talk Podcast

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Perhaps the most famous Portsmouth fan in North America, Chuck Culpepper documented his conversion to football fan and Pompey supporter in Bloody Confused (or, in the U.K., Up Pompey). In the wake of a trying season at Fratton Park, Chuck rejoins the EPL Talk podcast to shares his views on the turmoil, talk about his experiences going back to Fratton Park, and reflect on what the melancholy times mean for his support of team and league.

EPL Talk Network Forums Have Moved

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Good news everyone. In the build-up to the World Cup, we've decided to move the EPL Talk Network forums from Ning to www.epltalk.grou.ps.

Don't worry if you were already a member of our previous network, you have already been migrated to our new destination, avatars and all! Due to changes in the Ning network that previously hosted our network, the EPL Talk Network Forums will now be taking advantage of all the great features Grou.

Tottenham Star Admits to Being Premier League Mercenary

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In a recent interview with The Guardian, Tottenham Hotspur star Benoit Assou-Ekotto has proven himself to be a very honest man. If you read the interview, Assou-Ekotto talks about how football is a job for him, not a passion. That he doesn't keep friends on the team, and that the "shirt" means nothing to him, and other players are liars when they say they don't play for money.

Daily Ticker: Mourinho Eyeing Lampard, Hodgson Denies Liverpool Rumors, More

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Inter Milan skipper Jose Mourinho, expected by many to leave Serie A and head to Real Madrid this summer, has already started scouting some new team members. According to the Daily Mail, Mourinho is looking to woo Chelsea legend Frank Lampard on a £30 million deal.

Mourinho and Lampard spent three years together when the Portuguese managed Chelsea from 2004-2007.

Premier League Footballer of the Week, Gameweek 37

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  • Slim Pickens isn't just the name of the bloke from Dr. Strangelove
  • Congratulations isn't just the name of the new MGMT album
  • Rafa's (Money Back) Guarantee

In one of the all time "we're not up for this" performances, the proud, historic, legendary Liverpool Football Club capitulated any hope of fourth (which remember, was guaranteed) and sadly shook the hand of Chelsea FC while Chelsea's left clutched the title.

Tottenham Ball Boy Runs On To Pitch and Stops Play: Video

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Many of us want the season to end as soon as possible so we can begin the countdown for the World Cup. For one Tottenham Hotspur supporter, he got a bit ahead of himself in this past Saturday's match against Bolton Wanderers when he ran on to the pitch and lost his bearings.

For a good laugh, watch this one-of-a-kind video (see above).

Stoke City Home Shirt, 2010-11 Season: Photo

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Stoke City unveiled their new home football shirt for the 2010-11 season Sunday night. The design by Adidas is the first of a four-year deal with the German kit supplier.

The three white stripes down the shoulders and arms of the Stoke City shirt are a good complement to the stripes on the front of the shirt.

Blackburn v Arsenal Match Blacked-Out In United States

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Soccer fans living in the United States who want to watch Blackburn Rovers against Arsenal today (Noon ET) will be disappointed to learn that the game is not available and is, for lack of better words, blacked-out. It's not being shown on ESPN2 (as originally planned) or Fox Soccer Channel nor Fox Soccer Plus or even FoxSoccer.

Steve McClaren Wins Dutch Title With FC Twente

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Fleet Street never had so much fun. Steve McClaren, who had never played or managed in London and hailed from Yorkshire was the England manager. McClaren in retrospect never had a chance with the snobbish London set, which is intent on writing tabloid headlines and poking fun at outsiders and those who don't wine and dine them.

Weekend Review Show: EPL Talk Podcast

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Chelsea overcame their largest remaining title obstacle on Sunday, a comfortable 2-0 win at Anfield where an unfortunate assist from Steven Gerrard helped officially eliminate Liverpool's chances of returning to Champions League. On this edition of the EPL Talk podcast, myself, Laurence McKenna and Kartik Krishnaiyer review the weekend that was in the Premiership, a weekend that featured Manchester City eliminating Aston Villa from the race for fourth place, beating the Villans 3-1 on Saturday.

Poll: Who Will Win the Premier League? Chelsea or Man United?

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It was a nerve-wracking Sunday in the Premier League with both Chelsea and Manchester United's Premier League title hopes on the line, but both clubs came through with their much needed three points. That means that the Premier League will be decided on the final day of the season.

Liverpool’s Woes Compounded; Chelsea Almost There

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Out of the Europa league, out of the Champion's League next season, trophy-less this season, and with key players and manager looking likely to leave, Liverpool's season of agony is coming to a close. An outstanding contrast to the way they finished last season, the question on all Pool fans' minds will inevitably be "what went wrong?

FoxSoccer.tv Google AdSense Fail

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Someone at Fox Soccer Channel needs to learn the time difference between England and the East Coast of the United States. Take a look at the above picture snapped this morning to see how potential new customers FoxSoccer.tv may have missed after they listed the wrong start time for the 8:30am ET game.

Ghosts of Liverpool Succumb to Chelsea Defeat

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Sunday's Liverpool match against Chelsea was a perfect reflection of the dire situation the once proud red half is in.

It was a hapless, abject performance from Liverpool who floated around the pitch like ghosts. Lacking inspiration, desire and spirit, the 2-0 scoreline to Chelsea was a fair result.

Liverpool At Chelsea, Live Gamecast Starts At 8:15 EST

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For weeks pundits have pointed to Sunday as the defining day in the race for the EPL Crown. Chelsea travels to Anfield to take on an always-dangerous Liverpool side. Chelsea hold a one-point lead over Manchester United and Liverpool are clinging to slim Champions' League hopes. The Blues defeated The Reds 2-0 at Stamford Bridge back in October and Rafa Benitez's men are looking for revenge.

Premier League Gameweek 37: Open Thread

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It's hard to believe, but it's the last weekend before the final Sunday of the 2009-10 Premier League season. I think you'll agree that it's been an incredible one both on and off the pitch. But before I get too nostalgic, there are still big games happening this weekend and plenty to talk about.

Birmingham City Home Football Kit 2010-11 Season: Revealed

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It's decided. Birmingham City's football kit for the 2010-11 season (pictured above) will be blue and white with a large white chevron across the front of the home blue shirt.

It was the Birmingham City supporters who picked the winning design from a choice of four different designs that were presented to fans on the official Birmingham City website.

TV Ratings For Manchester United v Spurs On ESPN2

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Last week's match at Old Trafford between two in-form teams — Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur — was broadcast on ESPN2 in the United States. Regarding the number of viewers the 7:30am ET game got, it garnered a viewing audience of 388,000 and achieved a 0.3 rating.

The audience of 388,000 definitely puts the game in the top 10 highest viewing numbers for Premier League games on ESPN2 this season.

Stoke City and The White Stripes: A Match Not Made In Heaven

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Stoke City announced this morning that Adidas will be their official kit supplier for the next four years. In normal circumstances, that would be good news but many Stoke City supporters are upset at the speculation (which has now been confirmed by Stoke City) that the backs of the shirts will feature a solid back instead of the typical design that features stripes.