Who Ate All the Pies Archives for January 2010

Man Utd Want Jack Rodwell, Will Offer £10m + Michael Carrick

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By Ollie Irish

As Swap Shop deals go, £10m plus Michael Carrick doesn't sound like too bad an offering but when the prize is Jack Rodwell, forget about it.

The 19-year-old midfielder is the most gifted and mature English player under the age of 21, and United will surely have to offer much more than the Sun's reported deal if David Moyes is to let another prodigy leave Goodison for Old Trafford.

Top 10 Photos: Chelsea 2-0 Stoke

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By Ollie Irish

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Chelsea's Frank Lampard (left) is consoled by team mate Didier Drogba (right) after his shot from the penalty spot was saved by Stoke City goalkeeper Thomas Sorensen

Photos: PA

AFTER a couple of six-goal demolitions, a 2-0 win seems rather tame, but to outmuscle Stoke and keep a clean sheet shows beyond doubt that Chelsea are made of the stuff of champions again.

Harry Redknapp Tells Sky Sports To ‘F**k Off’ After Wheeler Dealer Jibe

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By Ollie Irish

In which Sky Sports trots out the old 'Arry is a wheeler dealer' cliché and feels the sweary wrath of Tottenham's gaffer:

Get in there Arry, you f**king beauty. He is a f**king football manager. Put that in HD you c**ts.

Memo to Sky Sports: Don't attempt matey banter with Arry after his team has just lost at home to Wigan.

Goal Of The Weekend: Theo Walcott, Blackburn v Arsenal

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By Ollie Irish

Not the most wonderful weekend for wonder goals, but I judged the pick of the bunch to be Theo Walcott's clinical strike from a tight angle at Ewood Park:

Honourable mentions: Fernando Torres (v West Brom), Nani (v West Ham), Dickson Etuhu (v Blackpool) and Robbie Blake (v Birmingham).

Top 10 Photos: Blackburn 1-2 Arsenal

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By Ollie Irish

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Arsenal's Theo Walcott (centre) celebrates scoring their first goal of the game with teammates Robin van Persie (right) and Vassiriki Diaby

Photos: PA

EWOOD Park is a very tough place to go and win these days, so for Arsenal to do so is another sign that the "don't like it up 'em" line is well past its sell-by date.

Video: Jessica Kastrop Wears Petr Cech-Style Helmet To Protect Against Stray Balls

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By Ollie Irish

Khalid Boulahrouz apologised for his accidental assault on German TV reporter Jessica Kastrop's head by presenting her with a Petr Cech-style helmet, as well as some flowers.

If you haven't seen the original blooper, it's also replayed in the clip of the former Chelsea defender's apology:



Tottenham Boss Harry Redknapp Confused By AWOL Signing

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By Chris Wright

"Been dazed and confused for so long it's not true"

TOTTENHAM manager Harry Redknapp has admitted that he is in the dark as to the whereabouts of his new signing, Brazilian midfielder Sandro.

Spurs paid Internacional £8 million to secure Sandro's services in July, with the understanding that the 21-year-old would move to White Hart Lane after his involvement in the 2010 Copa Libertadores which finished on August 18th.

Jack Wilshere Arrested After ‘Fracas’

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By Ollie Irish

Arsenal and England midfielder Jack Wilshere was arrested in the early hours of Sunday following a "fracas".

A statement issued by the Wasserman Media Group on behalf of the 18-year-old claimed Wilshere was "unlikely" to face charges.

Viral Video: Larissa Riquelme And Her Breasts Shill For Nokia

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By Ollie Irish

Larissa Riquelme, who prefers to keep her mobile phone tucked safely in her cleavage, shills for Nokia:

I'm surprised it took this long for a mobile company to hook up with Larissa. That cleavage sure makes me feel all warm and fuzzy about Nokia.

Top Six Footballers Who Played For AC Milan And Inter

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By Ollie Irish

In the light of Zlatan's move to AC Milan, Pies lists six more famous footballers who played for both Milan giants:

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Edgar Davids - Made 19 appearances for Milan between 1996-97, then played for Inter in 2004-05

Photos: PA



Top 10 Photos: Derby County 2-2 QPR – What A Finish!

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By Ollie Irish

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The new statue of Derby County's former manager Brian Clough and assistant manager Peter Taylor outside of Pride Park

Photos: PA

"It feels like we won," QPR boss Neil Warnock said after his team scored twice in added time, through Patrick Agyemang and James Mackie, to earn an incredible point at Pride Park.

Zlatan Signs For AC Milan, Claims Pep Guardiola Shattered His Barcelona Dream

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By Ollie Irish

Striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic took a parting shot at Barcelona head coach Pep Guardiola after agreeing a move to AC Milan. Unlike most of his shots for Barca, this one hit the target...

"Guardiola is the philosopher who has shattered my dream to play with Barcelona," Ibrahimovic said.

Hatem Ben Arfa Joins Newcastle On Loan

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By Chris Wright

JUST a quickie to let you know that Newcastle have confirmed that Marseille winger Hatem Ben Arfa has officially joined the club on a season-long loan.

A statement from manager Chris Hughton on the club's official website reads;

"Hatem is a player who we have been tracking for a long time, and what is important is that he is not only a young player who should continue to improve, but somebody who already has a great reputation in the game.

Liverpool Sign Porto Midfielder Raul Meireles

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By Chris Wright

THAT didn't take long! A day after Javier Mascherano finally waltzed through the exit door at Anfield, Liverpool are close to signing a direct replacement after agreeing a £10.7 million package with Porto for their wispy midfielder Raul Meireles.

Spot The Baller: Keith Chegwin

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By Ollie Irish

Which Liverpool player is hiding behind a cunning disguise in the form of Keith 'Cheggers' Chegwin? Answers in the usual place, please.

Previous answer: Stiliyan Petrov



Tottenham To Make A Move For Aston Villa Star?

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AFTER a long night of stress-wrought 2+2=2 calculations, The Daily Mirror have come to the pretty sensational EXCLUSIVE! conclusion that Tottenham will lodge a bid for Aston Villa's tiny-headed winger Ashley Young this very morrow.

To be fair, the rag have done the decent thing and shown their workings, and it seems that the long and short of their deductions are based solely on the fact that Villa plopped out of Europe last night, whereas Spurs qualified for the Champions League by besting BSC Young Boys earlier in the week thus igniting Young's green-eyed ego.

Sh*t Lookalikes: Julio Cesar & Vince Vaughn

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You see it? I see it. A bit. If Julio had a big coke habit, this would work even better.

Got a Shit Lookalike for Pies? Send it to ollie@anorak.co.uk



Top 10 Photos: Aston Villa 2-3 Rapid Vienna

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Rapid Vienna's Atdhe Nuhiu (left) and Aston Villa's Stephen Ireland battle for the ball

AFTER an impressive but misleading win against West Ham at Villa Park on the first day of the season, all of the wheels seem to have come off at once for poor Kevin MacDonald.

Emmanuel Adebayor Angling For Man City Exit, Any Takers?

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"Cooee!"

MANCHESTER City's big sky-blue meat grinder has apparently claimed another victim with striker Emmanuel Adebayor now admitting that he may have to leave the club during the next few days if assurances over his Eastlands future are not forthcoming.

Striker Marc-Antoine Fortune Rejoins West Brom

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AFTER a largely rubbish spell with Celtic, large rubbish striker Marc-Antoine Fortune has re-signed for West Brom on a two-year deal.

Fortune fell foul of large numbers of Bhoys fans during his short stint at Parkhead, with many believing that his cumbersome performances didn't justify his relatively high £3.

Wigan Accept Birmingham’s Bid For Charles N’Zogbia

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WIGAN have confirmed that they have accepted Birmingham's undisclosed (probably somewhere around the £10 million mark) offer for winger Charles N'Zogbia.

Initial thoughts: A move to comfortably mid-table Birmingham will definitely be a step up for 'Insomnia' (Big Fat Joe©, 2009), as Wigan are almost certain to get relegated this season on current form.

Pies Prem Prediction League: Week 3

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"This week Manish, I fancy the big team to beat the little team."

After two weeks, here's how the table looks:

Ping Yang – 22
Thrillson – 17
George – 16
Cape Toon – 15
Davey Chicago – 15
Hollis – 14
Mooks – 14
Pies – 14
Rob – 14
Enrique – 13
Lefty – 13
Lawro – 12
Lloyd – 12
Philando Torres – 12
Shivam Manghnani – 12
Ben Cornelius – 11
DaveHackney – 11
Fellaini's Fro – 11
Podge – 11
Raybuck Luck – 11
Adam FJ – 10
Max 10
Nick – 10
Welbourne Road 10
Kalezu 9
Lucid 9
Al Neri 8
Jawillia – 8
Jesus – 8
Les 8
Megaman 789 8
R-Hops – 8
Tottenblog – 8
Yahhhsteve – 8
B Sides – 7
EJ O'Brart – 7
Java – 7
Mareantheone 7
Mark Holleran – 7
Syndex 7
Chris Warwick 6
Dickardinho – 6
Lainey Craig – 6
OlisHoplo 6
Pivs 6
Sariann – 6
Michael 5
Pedro Leonardo 5
South City 5
Dixon 4
Donner Meat 4
Edhehe 4
HJ 4
Mizman 4
The 100% Greek – 4
Andy Lawn – 3
Carl James 3
Arteta's Chorizo – 2
M Saketh 2
Rich – 2
Jack – 1

A triffic performance by Ping Yang, who scored a mighty 14 points this week.

Top 10 Photos: Birmingham City 3-2 Rochdale

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Birmingham City's Lee Bowyer (left) and Rochdale's Brian Barry-Murphy battle for the ball

Photos: PA

A cracking Carling Cup tie, this, not that many people noticed. Rochdale played a blinder and really gave the Prem side a scare not that I imagine Big Eck would be gutted if his side got knocked out of this competition early on in the season; that said, Brum did put out quite a strong side, including giving a debut to on-loan striker Matt Derbyshire, who won a (dubious) penalty and scored his first goal for the club, from close range.

Europa League Draw: Liverpool In With Napoli, Man City Face Juventus

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THE Europa League balls came out in this completely random order:

Group A: Juventus, Man City, Salzburg, Lech Posnan

Group B: Atletico Madrid, Bayer Leverkusen, Rosenborg, Thessaloniki

Group C: Sporting, Lille, Levski Sofia, Gent

Group D: Villarreal, Club Brugge, Dinamo Zagreb, PAOK

Group E: AZ Alkmaar, Dynamo Kiev, BATE Borisov, FC Sheriff

Group F: CSKA Moscow, Palermo, Sparta Prague, Lausanne-Sport

Group G: Zenit St Peterburg, Anderlecht, AEK Athens, Hadjuk Split

Group H: VfB Stuttgart, Getafe, Odense BK, Young Boys

Group I: PSV Eindhoven, Sampdoria, FC Metalist Kharkiv, Debreceni

Group J: Sevilla, Paris St Germain, Borussia Dortmund, Karpaty Lviv

Group K: Liverpool, Steaua Bucharest, Napoli, FC Utretcht

Group L: FC Porto, Besiktas, CSKA Sofia, Rapid Vienna

Phew, that's a hell of a lot of football right there.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s Sexy Supermodel WAG Hates Football

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C-RON'S supermodel beard girlfriend Irina Shayk (see above for details) must get very bored with him talking about his job, as she has zero interest in football.

In an interview for the latest issue of GQ we say interview, but it's more about the photos, of course the Russian catwalk queen said: "I'm not a fan of soccer, for sure not!

Top 10 Photos: Man City 2-0 Timisoara

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Manchester City's Shaun Wright-Phillips (number 8) celebrates with his team mates after scoring the opening goal.

Photos: PA

THIS was soooo easy for City like watching a big cat toy absent-mindedly with its prey.

Liverpool Agree Fee With Barcelona For Javier Mascherano

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Jump for joy!

HOSANNAH! Liverpool and Barcelona have finally agreed a fee (rumoured to be £18.8 million) for want-away midfielder Javier Mascherano, and a statement on the Barca website hints that, as personal terms have already been agreed, a routine medical is now all that stands in the way of the Argentine's move to the Camp Nou.

Tottenham To Take Milan Flop On Season-Long Loan

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TOTTENHAM chairman Daniel Levy is currently in talks with AC Milan over taking Klaas-Jan Huntelaar on a season-long loan. The deal is thought to include a 'first refusal' option once the loan expires, with a £12 million fee being mooted.

The Rossoneri are thought to be keen to flog Huntelaar, who has failed to impress during his year in Italy, with an eye on freeing up room in their squad for a 'mega-signing' i.

Newcastle In Pole Position To Sign Hatem Ben Arfa

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MARSEILLE winger Hatem Ben 'Arfa Scargill' is on the verge of sealing a move to Newcastle United, after refusing to train with his current teammates in a bid to force his exit through.

L'OM president Jean-Claude Dassier has confirmed that two clubs have agreed a suitable package for Ben Arfa, with the player now due to fly to the North East today to finalise a loan move (with an option to buy);

"He will travel to Newcastle [today].

Diego Returns To The Bundesliga With Wolfsburg

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AFTER enduring a fairly torrid year in Serie A with Juventus, former Werder Bremen playmaker Diego has slunk back to the Bundesliga signing a €15 million, four-year deal with former German champions Wolfsburg last night.

The Brazilian midfielder became a club talisman during his time with Bremen, eventually inspiring the club to the German Cup title and a UEFA Cup final (a game he actually missed through suspension) during his final season with the club in 2008/09.

Man Utd Chief David Gill Rules Out Further Signings

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That's yer lot cocker

MANCHESTER United chief executive David Gill has ruled out the possibility of the club making any further signings before the transfer window closes next week.

United have so far bought Bebe (left), Javier Hernandez (centre), Chris Smalling (right) and Marnick Vermijl (18-year-old Belgian defender, unpictured) to the club during the summer, and Gill believes that the afore-mentioned additions are enough to bolster the squad sufficiently;

"Hopefully we've got the right numbers to compete on all fronts for the rest of the year.

Champions League Group Stage Draw: Tottenham Draw Champions Inter, Man Utd & Rangers Together

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Zis never gets old

Here's the full draw for the group stage of the 2010-11 Chaaaaaaaaampions League:

Group A: Inter (the holders), Werder Bremen, Tottenham, Twente

Group B: Lyon, Benfica, Schalke 04, Hapoel Tel Aviv

Group C: Man Utd, Valencia, Rangers, Bursaspor

Group D: Barcelona, Panathinaikos, Copenhagen, Rubin

Group E: Bayern Munich, Roma, FC Basel, Cluj

Group F: Chelsea, Marseille, Spartak Moscow, Zilina

Group G: Milan, Real Madrid, Ajax, Auxerre

Group H: Arsenal, Shakhtar Donetsk, Braga, Partizan

So the balls have spoken tough draw for Spurs, but there's no doubt about the Group of Death: Group G.

Inter’s Bank Balance, The Skinny On Squillaci, Rafa v Mourinho Continues, FIFA Praises England 2018 World Cup Bid

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Approved content:

TOP LINK Fascinating interview with journeyman pro Garry Nelson, ex of Plymouth Argyle and Brighton & Hove Albion The Ball is Round

Cool Man City comic strip, with apologies to Frank Miller Cheeky Chip

Excellent piece on the worrying health of Inter's bank balance Swiss Ramble

Top 15 pics of WAG Danielle Lineker in a bikini Goaly Moly

Guess who?

Top 10 Photos: Everton 5-1 Huddersfield

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Everton's Mikel Arteta (left) and Tim Cahill during the warm-up

Photos: PA

EASY pickings for Everton in the League Cup, with goals by... deep breath... Marouane Fellaini, Jack Rodwell, Jermaine Beckford, Louis Saha and Leon Osman.

Liverpool Linked To Striker With The Greatest Name Ever!

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I've seen more meat on a wolf's winkle

YET more Liverpool rumour guff I'm afraid, but they get their sixth mention of the day with good reason. Just wait until you here who they are being linked with this time!

Reports in Holland are suggesting that manager Roy Hodgson is closely monitoring the progress of FC Utrecht's 21-year-old Dutch striker Ricky Van Wolfswinkel, who is apparently pulling up trees in the Eredivisie so far this season.

Barcelona Honour Ronaldinho’s Return To Camp Nou With Brilliant Tribute Video

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BARCELONA won the Gamper Trophy on penalties against Milan, after David Villa had scored his first goal for his new club, but many people will remember the occasion for this spine-tingling, pre-game tribute to Ronaldinho, who was returning to the Camp Nou with the Serie A club:

A brilliant reminder of Ron's ability, but you can't help but have mixed feelings when you watch it; the Brazilian had the world at his feet, with the opportunity to be remembered as one of the legends of the game (ranked up there with truly great players like Pele, Maradona and Zidane), but he scuffed his shot and in the process turned his career into a sad circus act.

Classic Banners: Welcome To Hell My Arse …

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THAT famous Scouse wit:

Liverpool fans showed off this most excellent banner at the 2005 Champions League final, held you might have heard about it in Istanbul.

Turkish fans are now synonymous with devilish hospitality, especially since the tragic tie between Leeds Utd and Galatasaray in 2000 (which spawned another classic banner).

Wolves ‘Keeper Matt Murray Announces Retirement

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WOLVES 'keeper Matt Murray has announced his retirement from professional football at the age of 29, after finally abandoning all hope of recovering from a knee injury that has continued to dog his latest return to fitness.

A one-time England U21 international, Murray has suffered a succession of major injuries since rupturing his cruciate ligament in 2000, with a string of broken feet, fractured shoulders and patella tendon and cruciate ligament injuries also playing their part in his decision to hang up his boots.

Top 10 European Home Kits For 2010-11

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A few of our favourite home kits in Europe for the 2010-11 season:

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Werder Bremen

Which one do you like best? Or let us know if we missed one of your favourites.

I'm a big fan of Sampdoria's kit in general, but I think Kappa have done a great job with it this year.

Sebastien Squillaci Completes His Arsenal Move

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ARSENAL have completed the signing of 30-year-old centre-back Sebastien Squillaci, who has joined the club on a 'long-term contract' (believed to be a four-year deal) from Sevilla for a fee believed to be in the region of £5.5 million.

Manager Arsene Wenger confirmed the news to Sky Sports News;

"We needed a centre-back of quality and experience if possible, and at the right price he was all of that.

Exeter City Retire No.9 Shirt For Nine Seasons In Honour Of Adam Stansfield

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EXETER City have decided to retire their No.9 shirt for nine seasons, as a tribute to Adam Stansfield, who lost his battle with bowel cancer earlier this month.

"Adam wore the number nine shirt with pride and distinction while making it his own during every one of his 158 appearances for the Grecians," a club spokesman told the Bridgewater Mercury.

England Star Wins Extension To High Court Injunction, Tabloids Gagged

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A current England international, who played for his country at the 2010 World Cup, has won a continuation of a High Court gagging order preventing the "misuse" of sensitive private information about him. Who could it be!?

The original injunction was granted to the as-yet-unnamed player on August 19, blocking the publication of allegations about his private life.

Top 10 Photos: Tottenham 4-0 Young Boys

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Tottenham Hotspur's Peter Crouch (left) scores his side's third goal of the game

Photos: PA

AND... relaaaax. Phew. In the end, Tottenham swept aside BSC Young Boys with relative ease, thanks to a pitch made of grass and the good touch of a big man, namely Peter 'Crouchinho' Crouch.

Man Utd Crock Michael Owen Heading Back To Liverpool

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JESU Christi, it's all a bit Liverpool-heavy on the wire of late.

Anywhom, this morning comes the news that Manchester United's in-house stable boy Michael Owen is to become a Liverpool player once again next month after leaving the club for Real Madrid six years ago.

Howard Webb: I Should Have Sent Off Nigel De Jong In World Cup Final

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Hadouken!

IN a revealing interview with the Guardian, ref Howard Webb admitted that he should have sent off Nigel De Jong for a reckless high tackle on Xabi Alonso in the 2010 World Cup final.

"Having seen it again from my armchair, I would red-card him," Webb admitted, which I think is very big of him.

Dirk Kuyt Asks To Leave Liverpool For Inter Milan

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IT never rains...

With Javier Mascherano still sulking until he gets his move to Barcelona, it now looks like Liverpool have a fight on their hands to keep hold of forward Dirk Kuyt, with the Dutch international reportedly pleading with the club to let him join his former coach Rafa Benitez at Inter Milan in a deal said to be worth upwards of £13 million.

West Ham Lead The Race To Sign Juventus Striker?

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ACCORDING to this morning's Daily Mirror, West Ham have edged in front of Liverpool, Aston Villa and West Brom in the race to procure the signature of Juventus' World Cup winning striker David Trezeguet.

Trezeguet has received plenty of offers after being told that he will be surplus to requirements at the Stadio Olimpico this season, with four teams in England and three in Spain already said to be bidding for his services.

Inter Milan Confirm Fresh Javier Mascherano Bid

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AFTER watching a pile of Betamax tapes of the player in action, then receiving the go-ahead from the club's money men on his pager, Inter Milan sporting director Marco Branca put down his Minidisc player for a moment and decided to fax Liverpool with an improved offer for Javier Mascherano.

Shit Lookalikes: Danielle Lineker & Catherine Zeta Jones

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A couple of bonny Welsh lasses:

The Leicester crisp merchant's wife looks like the Primark version of Zeta Jones, though to be fair to Mrs Lineker, it's not the best pic of her. That would be this picture, of course:

The Football WAG Index: Danielle Bux-Lineker

Got a lookalike for Pies?

Man Utd Crock Michael Owen Heads Back To Liverpool

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JESU Christi, it's all a bit Liverpool-heavy on the wire of late.

Anywhom, this morning comes the news that Manchester United's in-house stable boy Michael Owen is to become a Liverpool player once again next month after leaving the club for Real Madrid six years ago.

Top 10 Carling Cup Photos – Scott Parker FTW, Mame Diouf Scores Hat-Trick

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THE best action from last night's League Cup games. Because we care. A bit.

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West Ham United's Scott Parker celebrates scoring the winning goal against Oxford

Photos: PA



Video: Chelsea Flop Hits Female TV Presenter On The Head With Stray Football

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AMAZING inaccuracy, by none other than Chelsea flop Khalid 'The Cannibal' Boulahrouz! No wonder the Blues sold him.

It's 100% impossible not to enjoy this 'accident' although knowing footballers and their prankish ways, I wouldn't be surprised if Boulahrouz was trying to hit her.

Liverpool Outcast Alberto Aquilani Completes Juventus Move

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HOW did that go then? After 14 fairly fruitless months at the club, Alberto Aquilani has left Liverpool to join Juventus on a season-long loan deal with an agreement in place that gives the Italian club the option to sign him on a permanent basis for £13.1 million after the loan expires.

Sh*t Lookalikes: England Keeper Ben Foster & Shooting Stars’ Angelos Epithimiou

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IT'S all in the caveman jawline for me. Apart from that, it's proper shit which is as it should be. There have been too many high-quality lookalikes of late. It has to stop.

What's in your bag, Ben Foster? Show us what's in your bag, you bastard...

"Some spare keeping gloves, a Vicks inhaler and a bottle of Lucozade.

What Is Barcelona’s Best XI For The 2010-11 Season?

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COMPARED with Real Madrid's current Best XI, it should be a breeze picking Barcelona's first-choice line-up...

"Back a bit... a bit more... a bit more."

The formation: I'm going for a 4-2-3-1, with Biscuits in the holding role, and Xavi as the playmaker who never gives the ball away.

Jose Mourinho Tells Steven Gerrard He’s ‘At The Wrong Club’

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REAL Madrid manager Jose Mourinho has warned Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard that he may have to leave the club if he is serious about winning trophies.

Mourinho is a known admirer of Gerrard, but has been put off in his pursuit by Liverpool's £30 million valuation along with the 30-year-old England international advancing years.

The Sun’s Hatchet Job On ‘Jackass’ Fabio Capello Is A Disgrace

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THE Sun stepped up it's subtle 'Capello Out!' campaign today with a quite spectacularly abominable article by football hack Shaun Custis, in which England's manager was branded a 'Jackass' (for dropping Jack Wilshere geddit!), a 'silly ass' and a 'donkey'. You get the idea: from Turnip Taylor, via the Wally with the Brolly, to another hatchet job from Britain's most popular newspaper.

Fat Newcastle Fan Exposes Penis By Mistake (With Horrific Video Evidence)

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WARNING: This clip may give you nightmares for several years...

...

At least he can see his cock now, poor bloke.

Via our eagle-eyed friends at Goaly Moly & Anorak



Top 10 Third Kits For 2010-11

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WOUHOU! Let's hear it for totally unnecessary, and totally exploitational 'third' football kits! Yeah! Our favourite it undoubtedly the Lyon 'LSD curtains' kit...

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Lyon

Which one do you like best?

Liverpool Close In On Fulham’s Paul Konchesky

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SKY Sports seem reasonably confident that Liverpool will wrap up the £3.5 million signing of Fulham left-back Paul Konchesky later today, after the defender reportedly signalled his intentions to join former boss Roy Hodgson at Anfield to new manager Mark Hughes.

Liverpool To Spend Mascherano Money On A Trio Of Talent?

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WITH it looking increasingly likely that their want-away holding man Javier Mascherano will join Barcelona in the non-to-distant future, it seems that Liverpool are already drawing up planso fritter away their imminent £18 million windfall.

Word on rumour street is that a £6 million slice of the Masch cash is being put aside to fund a move for West Ham target man Carlton Cole, with a further £6 million to be offered in various performance-related clauses lets just hope that they don't concern penalty conversion rates for Carlton's sake.

Chelsea Chasing South Korean Star Chu-Young Park

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CHELSEA have opened talks with South Korean star Chu-Young Park over an £8 million move to Stamford Bridge.

The 25-year-old forward, who currently plays his club football in France with AS Monaco, met with Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti, sporting director Frank Arnesen and chief executive Ron Gourlay hours before their opening-day drubbing of West Brom to discuss a deal.

Tottenham Striker Jermain Defoe To Undergo Surgery

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TOTTENHAM striker Jermain Defoe will finally undergo surgery on his troublesome groin, but only after playing in tonight's Champions League play-off second leg against Young Boys of Switzerland.

Defoe, who has been struggling with the injury since the World Cup, was initially scheduled to go under the knife last Thursday but the surgeon that Spurs handpicked to perform the procedure was unavailable.

New Man Utd Signing Not Good Enough For Reserves?

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Bebe (circled) with Little Pea, Fergie and Big Chris Smalling

BEBE, who Man Utd signed for £7m despite Alex Ferguson never having seen him play, is playing so badly in training that he was withdrawn from United's reserves last night so says the Mirror. Oops I guess that can happen when you sign a player you know almost nothing about.

Robinho Rejects Fenerbahce, Holds Out For Italy Or Spain

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MANCHESTER City's wayward winger Robinho has chosen not to go slumming it in the Turkish league with Fenerbahce or Besiktas, and is instead holding out for an altogether more glamorous move to either Italy or Spain.

City are desperate to offload the Brazilian international to whoever will take him before the transfer window closes next week and therefore granted him permission to talk with the Turkish giants.

Shit Lookalikes: England Keeper Ben Foster & Shooting Stars’ Angelos Epithimiou

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IT'S all in the caveman jawline for me. Apart from that, it's proper shit which is as it should be. There have been too many high-quality lookalikes of late. It has to stop.

What's in your bag, Ben Foster? Show us what's in your bag, you bastard...

"Some spare keeping gloves, a Vicks inhaler and a bottle of Lucozade.

Top 10 Photos: Arsenal 6-0 Blackpool

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WE continue our review of the weekend's Prem action with the best pics from Arsenal's easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy win over Blackpool. Reality bit hard for Ian Holloways's side:

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Cesc Fabregas, Arsenal

Photos: PA

Arsenal season preview

What is Arsenal's best XI for 2010-11?

Video: Stjarnan Debut ‘Hand Grenade’ Goal Celebration

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NUTTY Icelandic side Stjarnan just will not stop with the choreographed goal celebrations. And why should they? Look at all the free publicity they get as a result.

The latest routine, rolled out during their game against Keflavik, is the 'Hand Grenade' and it's a slight return to form (even if it's been done before in other sports):

That was shocking defending by Keflavik too.

Mourinho Writes Off Arsenal, FIFA 11 First Look, The Phil Neville iPhone App

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Recommended football content for your eyes:

TOP LINK Bayern Munich crack out the lederhosen und bieren Dirty Tackle

Excited by the Phil Neville iPhone App? Off the Post

Wow, Neil Shipperley ate all the pies Mirror

Hands on with the new FIFA 11 videogame Three and in

Jose Mourinho dismisses title hopes of Arsenal and Liverpool Mail

An amusing Millwall wardrobe malfunction The Spoiler

Chelsea have scored 30 Premier League goals since they last conceded, and other remarkable stats F365

Former WAG Cheryl Cole turned down £500k to pose for Playboy Goaly Moly

Fulham sign Algerian defender Halliche from Benfica Telegraph

Chelsea swoop for Inter defender?

The John Sitton Star Wars Mash-up Is Impressive… Most Impressive

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YEP, this works for me (featuring NSFW f**king language)...

Impressive... Most impressive.



Barcelona Want A Holding Midfielder, Who Could They Mean?

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BARCELONA coach Pep Guardiola has refused to comment on his club's pursuit of Liverpool's Javier Mascherano, but has admitted that a nice new defensive midfielder would be a perfect addition to his squad.

Mascherano opted out of Liverpool's defeat at the hands of those nouvelle riche oiks Manchester City last night, fuelling speculation that he is on the verge of moving to the Camp Nou, however Guardiola still refuses to be drawn on the issue;

"If a defensive midfielder arrives the needs of the team will be resolved.

Wigan Athletic Launch New Away Kit For 2010-11 … At Last

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MOST teams launch new kits before the start of the season. Not Wigan, who wanted to wait until they conceded ten goals in the league.

Anyway, here's a peek at the Latics' new away kit, in the hands of new signing Steven Caldwell (a ginger Scot! Whatever next):

From Wigan's website:

"Latics players will wear the brand new 2010-11 MiFit all black away kit in tonight's Carling Cup 2nd Round game against Hartlepool United, and will be available for supporters to purchase from next Tuesday, August 31.

Premier League Target Loic Remy Joins Marseille

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OLYMPIQUE Marseille have announced the €15.5 million capture of Loic Remy from Nice on a five-year deal.

Terms were agreed upon by the two parties last week but the deal was put on ice whilst Remy underwent medical examinations at Marseille after a routine medical showed that he suffered from a heart problem although L'OM's club doctor Christophe Baudot has since cleared the 23-year-old striker to continue playing.

Larissa Riquelme Poses Naked For Playboy

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PARAGUAY'S hottest female fan, the ubiquitous Larissa Riquelme, has misplaced her clothes again, this time in a shoot for the Brazilian edition of Playboy. She did manage to keep hold of her mobile, at least.

Click to enlarge (the image, not her breasts):

That is a sensible place to keep your phone.

David Weir Earns Scotland Call-Up At The Age Of 40

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Veteran (this guy was born between the wars) Rangers centre-back David Weir has been drafted back into the Scotland squad to face both Lithuania and Lichtenstein in next month's Euro 2012 qualifying games at the grand old age of 40.

Weir hadn't been included in either of the first two squads that current coach Craig Levein announced after taking over from George Burley in December, his last game being Scotland's defeat at the hands of the Dutch in a World Cup qualifier during September of last year.

Nicklas Bendtner Sacks His ‘Self-Publicist’ Physio

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"You are not fit to be the great Bendtner's physio! Get out of my sight!"

ARSENAL forward Nicklas Bendtner has ditched physiotherapist Soren Malling after labelling him a "self-publicist".

Bendtner is still out of action with a groin injury which has troubled him since the latter part of last season and he spent some time with compatriot Malling as part of his rehabilitation.

Top 10 Photos Of Footballers Who Look Like They’re Receiving Blowjobs

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DOES exactly what it says on the tin. Enjoy as much as they did...

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Sam Vokes, Wales



Top 10 Photos: Manchester City 3-0 Liverpool

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Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart

Photos: PA

A shining performance by City, but one to make Chelsea, Man Utd and Arsenal look up? Yeah, definitely. Although Liverpool were woeful Hodgson should never have persisted with 4-4-2 City looked strong and played as a team, like a Chelsea in the making.

Viral Football: A Typical Conversation With A Spurs Fan

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FOLLOWING on from the typical conversation with a deluded Gooner, here's a not-inaccurate dig at the worst kind of Tottenham fans:

Sounds about right.



Tottenham Want Real Madrid Anchor Lassana Diarra

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TOTTENHAM are rumoured to be plotting a move for yet another former Arsenal man (following the aquisition of Ol' Billy Gallas last week) in the shape of Real Madrid's third-or-possibly-fourth choice anchor man Lassana Diarra.

Madrid are keen to whittle down their squad in an attempt to accommodate new signings Mesut Ozil and Sami Khedira and adhere to UEFA's new 25-man squad guidelines with coach Jose Mourinho earmarking 'Lass' as one of the players he would be willing to jettison.

Liverpool Reject Barcelona’s Opening Bid For Javier Mascherano

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LIVERPOOL have snubbed Barcelona's opening bid for Javier Mascherano which is believed to be somewhere in the region of £18.8m with the Catalan club also willing to throw winger Alexander Hleb into the bargain (personally, £18.8 million without Hleb thrown in sounds like a fairly decent deal to me).

Are Manchester City Serious Title Contenders?

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Man City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak (left) and owner Sheikh Mansour watch their team beat Liverpool

MAN City were very impressive in beating Liverpool 3-0 at Eastlands last night. I take them very seriously as title contenders, and did so even before a ball was kicked this season, but do you?

Everton Plan To Swap Steven Pienaar For Peter Crouch?

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AFTER tracking him for almost a month, Everton are finally ready to make their move for Tottenham striker Peter Crouch and plan to use winger Steven Pienaar as bait to push the move through before the transfer deadline passes in a week's time.

Shit Lookalikes: Man City Owner Sheikh Mansour & Magic Man David Blaine

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COULD it be magic...

And of course, you're getting the word... Mido.

Got a Shit Lookalike for us? Then send it immediately to ollie@anorak.co.uk

More Shit Lookalikes



Real Madrid Rule Out Emmanuel Adebayor, Didier Drogba Signings

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REAL Madrid coach Jose Mourinho has admitted that the chances of him being able to nab Emmanuel Adebayor from Manchester City and/or Didier Drogba from Chelsea are slim...verging on nil.

Mourinho conceded that City's imperious financial backing would make a move for Adebayor almost impossible, telling Sky Sports News;

"I think no chance.

Top 10 Photos: Wigan Athletic 0-6 Chelsea

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Didier Drogba, Chelsea

Photos: PA

TWO games, 12 goals scored, no goals conceded. That'll do. Champions Chelsea have made the most impressive start to a Premier League season ever, albeit against two mediocre sides, and without really tearing the pitch up.

Mascherano Agrees Terms With Barcelona, England’s 2018 World Cup Under Scrutiny, Freak Football Injuries

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LINKS!

Javier Mascherano agrees terms with Barcelona Guardian

Man City unveil new 'Welcome to Manchester' mural The Spoiler

TOP LINK Top 10 freak football injuries Mirror

FIFA assessors come to England to check out 2018 World Cup bid BBC

Guess that football WAG's arse Goaly Moly

Just f**king do it!

Which Chelsea Player Cuts Up His Team-Mates’ Pants?

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FOOTBALL players seem to love playing childish, sub-Jackass pranks on their team-mates at least, the witless English ones do.

The News of the Screws reported yesterday that Chelsea have been struck by a phantom pants-slasher, who has been sneaking into the Blues' dressing room and cutting up the players' designer pants.

Mesut Ozil Has Excellent Taste In T-Shirts

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MESUT Ozil in Madrid at the weekend, wearing a most excellent 'Dallas' T-shirt. We approve. It's very difficult to dislike young Mesut, isn't it.

Via Goaly Moly (which has more fine pics of Real's players out on the town together)



Ajax Re-Sign Mido – No-one Cares, Not Even Ajax

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EREDIVISIE giants Ajax have re-signed professional waste-of-space Mido, who has played for no less than eight clubs (with increasingly less effect) since leaving the Amsterdam Arena in 2003.

It seems the move is born out of sheer desperation for the Dutch side, with coach Martin Jol issuing this heart-swellingly fond 'welcome back' message on the club's official website;

"We needed an extra striker and we have limited resources which have to be considered.

PSV Play Hardball With Liverpool Over Striker

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PSV have told Liverpool that they have no intention of allowing their £10-million-rated striker Ola Toivonen to move to Anfield before the transfer window slams shut next week.

Liverpool's Head of Footballing Development, Kenny Dalglish, travelled to watch Toivonen (as well as his teammate, Mexican left-back Carlos Salcido) play for PSV against AZ Alkmaar on Sunday, but the Dutch club's sporting director, Marcel Brands, has waived off any speculation surrounding the duo joining Roy Hodgson's side, telling fotballskanalen.

Top 10 Photos: Fulham 2-2 Manchester United

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Fulham Chairman Mohamed Al Fayed (left) with club mascot Billy the Badger

Photos: PA

'SILLY' points dropped by Man Utd, according to Fergie, though these days a point at Fulham is a useful result.

Barcelona Are The Cut-Price Jokers Of European Football

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By an anonymous Arsenal fan who would quite like to revisit Barcelona one day

THERE was a time when if you asked any sane British footy fan who their favourite other European team was, they would smile and wistfully say Barcelona. Not any more.

As we all know, Barca is a club steeped in the best traditions of football, which has in the past boasted some of the most amazing players to have graced the game.

Goal Of The Weekend: Gareth Bale, Stoke v Tottenham

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NO contest. The goal of the weekend has to be Bale's spectacular volley at Stoke:

Amazing technique, and slightly easier on the eye than his first goal. This kid will go far and I'm very, VERY happy that Man Utd can't afford him right now.

Last week's best goal: Dave Jones v Stoke



Top 10 Photos: Newcastle United 6-0 Aston Villa

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WE present the top 10 pics from Newcastle's thoroughly impressive demolition of Aston Villa on Sunday at St James'. It was a nightmare debut for Stephen Ireland (he doesn't look match-fit, unsurprisingly), but it's Villa striker John Carew who should be feeling like poo, as he missed an early penalty when the score was 0-0.

Wigan ‘Striker’ Jason Scotland Joins Ipswich, That Went Well!

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After failing to do absolutely anything of note at the DW Stadium last season, Wigan striker (in the loosest possible terms) Jason Scotland has signed for Championship side Ipswich today for an undisclosed fee, after notching just one league goal in the 32 appearances for the Latics.

Six Things We Learned From The Premier League This Weekend

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1. Avram Grant is a dead man walking at West Ham. The hindsight police are onto you, Avram you've been winging it, haven't you!?

2. Referees (and policemen) are getting younger. I was both shocked and depressed to find out that the ref for Birmingham v Blackburn, one Michael Oliver, is only 25 years old.

Bordeaux Striker Fernando Cavenaghi Invites Sunderland Interest

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Bordeaux's hirsute Argentinian striker Fernando Cavenaghi has responded to claims that Sunderland are mulling over a £5 million bid for him by admitting that he would seriously consider any approach, telling L'Equipe;

"Why not? If a club wants to hire me, I have to think about it.

Liverpool To Swap Dirk Kuyt For Inter Starlet, Arsenal Set Their Sights On £22m Ajax Pair

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BIENVENUE mes amis! Here's the round-up...

Rumour No. 1: Liverpool are busy negotiating the sale of their erstwhile Dutch forward Dirk Kuyt to Inter Milan, and are close to agreeing a £7.5 million deal that would see the Nerazzurri's 23-year-old Nigerian striker Victor Obinna moving in the opposite direction.

Alex Ferguson Will Pay For BBC Boycott

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ALEX Ferguson still refuses to have anything to do with the BBC. This season it was expected that Man Utd's manager would finally end his self-imposed boycott of the corporation, which he once accused of "breathtaking arrogance". The stand-off resulted when, in 2004, BBC show 'Panorama' aired an investigation into Fergie's son Darren, currently the manager of Preston North End, but working as a football agent at the time.

Sh*t Lookalikes: Gareth Bale & A Space Chimp

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+ Photoshop

=

Lovely stuff.

Alex Mellows (@Mellows)



Newcastle Legend Alan Shearer Really Admires Andy Carroll’s Guts

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"Hey Andy, nice guts!"

After notching half the goals in Newcastle's impressive 6-0 mauling of Aston Villa yesterday, current No.9 Andy Carroll has been attracting glowing praise from many quarters, not least from former Toon hero Alan Shearer who, by all accounts, had a little money riding on the rangy striker's goal-scoring exploits.

Stoke City Rule Out A Move For Peter Crouch

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Peter Crouch Half man, half Ent

Stoke City manager Tony Pulis has rejected speculation this morning that he was preparing an offer for Tottenham striker Peter Crouch, insisting that the club would not be willing to break the bank to strike such a deal.

Arsenal Sign Defender Sebastien Squillaci, Subject To Medical

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ACCORDING to the official website of Sevilla, centre-back Sebastian Squillaci is flying to London tonight, and will undergo a medical at Arsenal tomorrow.

Squillaci hacks down Ronaldinho

The 30-year-old Frenchman, who was 'dropped' by Sevilla for their Champions League tie against Braga last week (the Spanish club protecting their interest), will cost the Gunners around £5m, reports say.

Joey Barton Celebrates Goal v Villa With Hitler Salute? (With Video Evidence)

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DID he? Judge for yourself...

From where I sit, it looks suspiciously like tached-up Joey Barton made a quick Hitler-style salute after scoring in Newcastle's thrashing of Aston Villa today (4-0 to the Geordies as I write). And why not if it's good enough for Freddie Starr (and many others), eh.

Snapshot: Yahoo Uses Glamour Models To Launch Premier League Coverage

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Nicola T (left) and Melissa Johnson promote the new Premier League football highlight service from Yahoo!

For selling football to the masses, you can always rely on the appeal of glamour girls in cheap and skimpy uniforms especially if one of the girls (Nicola T, Bobby Zamora's ex, and now with Simon Walton) is a football WAG.

Zidane Really, REALLY Loves Paul Scholes

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Zidane on Scholes:

"Paul Scholes is still in a class of his own. He's almost untouchable in what he does.

"I never tire of watching him play. You rarely come across the complete footballer, but Scholes is as close to it as you can get.

"One of my regrets is that the opportunity to play alongside him never presented itself during my career.

Weekly Pielights: Brave John Terry, Top 10 Football Moustaches, FIFA 11

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THE best stuff on Pies over the last week:

Nicolas Anelka dying with laughter

First pics of Balotelli at City

Gallery: All 20 Premier League away kits

Dave Jones scores goal of the weekend

An epic own goal from down under

The 10 best moustaches in football

FIFA 11 lets you play in goal

Memes: John Terry, brave England hero

Football WAG Index: Alessia Merz

Cardiff City run out of letter Y

Crystal Palace out of administration

Pies prediction league

Opinion: He's not that sort of player

Top 10 scary Harry Redknapp quotes

First pics of Stephen Ireland in Villa kit



Anderson Has ‘Incredible Talent’ But Lacks Maturity – Alex Ferguson

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FERGIE had some interesting stuff to say about Anderson, United's forgotten man:

"Anderson has an incredible talent. He loves training and playing. He wants to play every game and train every day.

"But that is a problem for me because at 22 he has not got the maturity to understand we operate a squad here.

Jonathan Woodgate Needs ‘Last Resort’ Groin Operation To Save Career

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TOTTENHAM manager Harry Redknapp fears Jonathan Woodgate will be forced to retire if one final operation fails to cure his ongoing groin problem.

Specialist surgery in America and Australia has proved unsuccessful and Redknapp believes the 30-year-old defender, who hasn't played since November 2009, is close to hanging up his boots.

Aquilani To Juventus, Davids To Palace, Guess The Football WAG’s Arse!

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Recommended reading:

TOP LINK Pele as a human being Run of Play

Pop star seeks soccer lessons from David Beckham Goaly Moly

Apple iPods making footballers miserable, says Dave Kitson Inside World Soccer

Edgar Davids has signed for Crystal Palace after all.

Joey Barton Moustache Watch … Still Weedy

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JOEY Barton has been growing a moustache for more than a week and it's still weedier than Yossi Benayoun's torso, and roughly on par with Gary Neville's Red-hot fuzz:

Whilst I'm here, time for a very quick Barton Shit Lookalike:

Barton and Gary Oldman in Alan Clarke's brilliant TV movie 'The Firm'.

The Black-And-White Years: Danny Blanchflower And Dave Mackay, 1962

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FROM the PA archives (click to see the full-size, high-res version):

JULY 1962: Tottenham Hotspur captain Danny Blanchflower (left), and team-mate Dave Mackay, sit and chat tactics during a training session at Cheshunt, in readiness for the start of the 1962-63 season.

Top 10 Scary Harry Redknapp Quotes

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IN which Harry Redknapp finds lots of things "scary". I'd hate to sit next to him on a ghost train...

"I admit the future for England looks a bit scary to me. No one should kid themselves England are overloaded with fantastic talent coming through. They're not.

BREAKING PHOTOS – Stephen Ireland In Aston Villa Kit

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SO hot you can't touch the plate for at least five minutes:

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New Aston Villa signing Stephen Ireland poses for a picture during a media call at Bodymoor Heath, Tamworth.

So, Mr Ireland: hit or shit?

Mario Balotelli’s Beauty Queen WAG Brings The Glamour To Manchester

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BREAKING NEWS! There's a hawt new WAG in the Prem. Say hello to Melissa Castagnoli. She's dating Man City striker Mario Balotelli (who scored on his City debut more of which later today), she's Italian, and she's a beauty queen who no doubt wants to save the planet. Most importantly, she looks like this:

Welcome to Manchester, Melissa.

Photos: Liverpool 1-0 Trabzonspor – Selfish Joe Cole Misses Penalty

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JOE Cole's dream start to his Liverpool continued against plucky Trabzonspor. Joey stepped up, in front of the Kop, to take a penalty which had he scored would have made the score 2-0 and sealed the tie.

He’s Not That Sort Of Player…

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By Jacob Steinberg

Not that sort of player

FOOTBALL is increasingly starting to resemble a popularity contest. We know who we like, we know who we tolerate, and we know who we hate. That's just the society we live in these days. Some people are simply meant to play the good guy while others, like Craig Bellamy, are meant to be the villain of the piece.

Pies Prem Prediction League: Week 2

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"Tell you what Manish, I quite fancy United at home this week."

HOW did you fare in Week 1? Here's the table. It's long:

George 13
Cape Toon 12
Philando Torres 10
Thrillson 10

Mooks 9
Ben Cornelius 8
Davey Chicago 8
Fellaini's Fro 8
Pies 8

Ping Yang 8
Yahhhsteve 8
B Sides 7
EJ O'Brart 7
Enrique 7
Java 7
Lefty 7
Rob 7
DaveHackney 6
Lainey Craig 6
Lawro 6

Lloyd 6
Jawillia 5
Jesus 5
Nick 5
Podge 5
Raybuck Luck 5
Shivam Manghnani 5
Tottenblog 5
Adam FJ 4
Hollis 4
Mark Holleran 4
R-Hops 4
The 100% Greek 4
Andy Lawn 3
Arteta's Chorizo 2
Dickardinho 2
Rich 2
Sariann 2
Jack 1

Well done to table-topper George for a splendid 13 points.

Rafael Van Der Vaart Drops Heavy Man Utd Hint

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RAFAEL van der Vaart has dropped a blatant 'rescue me from Real Madrid's bench' nudge-nudge-wink-wink to Manchester United.

Rafael van der Vaart's WAG, Sylvie easier on the eye than Rafael

With the signing of Mesut Ozil, it appears that VdV's first-team chances at Real are slim to none.

Europa League Photos: Celtic 2-0 Utrecht

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PHEWS all round for Celtic. A two-goal lead and a clean sheet in the first leg against Utrecht should really be enough to see them through to the group stages of the Europa League.

Roy Hodgson Doesn’t Fancy Alberto Aquilani

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MOST Liverpool fans really like Alberto Aquilani. They root for him, even though he is clearly not cut out for the Premier League.

Aquaman is talented but also wispish, fragile and ethereal. One might hope that £20m would buy you a player of slightly more substance.

Crystal Palace Out Of Administration

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CRYSTAL Palace have confirmed they are out of administration.

The Football League have officially accepted the club's new owners, CPFC Ltd, a consortium led by Steve Parish and Martin Long.

Brendan Guilfoyle, of P&A Partnership and joint administrator of the previous owners, Crystal Palace FC (2000), said in a statement: "It is a relief to get to the end of what has been a long and complex procedure.

Viral Football: Paul The Psychic Octopus Is Ambassador For England 2018 World Cup Bid

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PAUL the Psychic Octopus, one of the undisputed stars of the 2010 World Cup, has been chosen as a new ambassador for the FA's bid to host the World Cup in 2018. True story.

With Paul in our corner, we cannot fail.

Okay, this is something of a non-story and a viral bit of fun.

William Gallas To Tottenham? Yes, William Gallas To Tottenham

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WILLIAM Gallas is on the verge of completing a headline-grabbing move that would take him from Arsenal though he's a free agent right now to rivals Tottenham.

This is not a joke, this is not a test. It's real and it's happening. In a word: wow. I didn't see this coming and I'm not sure what to think.

FIRST PHOTOS – Matt Derbyshire At Birmingham City

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A few fresh pics of Matt Derbyshire teaming up with Big Eck at Birmingham City. The English striker has signed on loan from Olympiakos. It's a promising deal for the Blues I've long rated Derbyshire as one of the best young finishers this country has produced in a while, and he will add a much-needed edge to Birmingham's attack.

Spot The Baller: Herve Villechaize

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WHICH Aston Villa player is hiding behind Herve Villechaize? Answers please...

Previous answer: Tim Cahill well done to all of you who got that right.



The Black-And-White Years: Jimmy Hill On A Train With Johnny Haynes, 1958

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March 1958: (left to right) Fulham's Johnny Haynes, Jimmy Hill and Roy Bentley on board a train from Euston Station to Birmingham for Fulham's FA Cup semi final against Man Utd, held at Villa Park. The game ended 2-2, with United winning the replay 5-3 at Highbury.

No amount of facial hair can conceal the ridiculous size of Hill's chin.

WAG Abbey Clancy To Forgive Love Rat Peter Crouch?

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AFTER allegations that Peter Crouch cheated with a teenage prostitute during a stag do hit the tabloids, distraught WAG Abbey Clancy removed her engagement ring and fled to Spain, her mascara all a mess. As you do.

But now and this is gonna shock you, so brace yourself it looks like Clancy is prepared to forgive her lanky twat of a husband-to-be.

Football Gurns: Steven Gerrard Uses His Head

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STEVIE G does look, er, rather 'special' here:

Don't laugh.



Arsenal Make Official Bid For Sevilla Hardman Squillaci

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ACCORDING to the official website of Sevilla, Arsenal have made a bid for centre-back Sebastien Squillaci. Reports claim the offer is in the €8m ballpark.

The 30-year-old Frenchman, who put in some impressive shifts at Monaco and Lyon, is a French international and definitely rugged enough to cope with the rigours of the Premier League.

Photos: Liverpool Train For Trabzonspor Clash

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PHOTOS of Liverpool training ahead of this evening's Europa League first-leg match against Trabzonspor at Anfield. We broke into Melwood disguised as a hedge. Snap snap bosh:

Looks like the Gerrard-Carragher-Cole clique is coming along nicely.



Rangers Beat Celtic In Race To Sign Man City Winger

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RANGERS 1-0 Celtic The Gers are set to beat Old Firm rivals Celtic to the signing of Manchester City winger Vladimir Weiss, on a season-long loan deal.

City are happy to loan out the 20-year-old Slovakian international, who was linked with a move to Celtic earlier this month.

Manchester City Put Unwanted Trio Up For Sale

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MAN City boss Roberto Mancini has green-lit the sales of Shay Given, Robinho and Roque Santa Cruz. With a host of new players coming in over the summer, the trio are all surplus to requirements at Eastlands. Now it's just a case of finding some buyers.

Cardiff City Club Shop Runs Out Of Letter Y For Craig Bellamy Shirts

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THE demand for Craig Bellamy shirts was so high in Cardiff City's club shop that they ran out of the letter Y, forcing some desperate fans to make do with 'BELLAM' shirts. And here's the proof:

Screengrab via our pals at Caught Offside

The things fans do for their heroes, eh.

The Football WAG Index No.30: Alessia Merz

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ALESSIA Merz. Could be a designer kettle. But no, she's a former glamour model and still the WAG of veteran Italian striker Fabio Bazzani. The couple have one child together.

Like all the best WAGs, Merz hates wearing clothes, sometimes leading to NSFW shenanigans:

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Mo WAGs



Roy Hodgson Tried To Re-Sign Liverpool Legend

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BAYER Leverkusen chief Wolfgang Holzhauser has confirmed that veteran centre-back Sami Hyypia was close to re-signing for Liverpool.

Roy Hodgson admitted earlier this month that he had unsuccessfully attempted to buy the Finn out of the remaining one year of his contract for Bayer.

FIFA 11 Lets You Play As The Goalkeeper – Fun Fun Fun

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EA's 'FIFA 11′, which launches at the end of September (with Kaka on the cover duh), has a host of new features, naturally. The most intriguing of these is the 'Be A Goalkeeper' mode:

"EA announced at gamescom today a "Be A Goalkeeper" feature for FIFA 11. You'll be able to play through the game's 15-year career mode as a goalie, or create one in Virtual Pro 2.

FIFA 11 Screenshots And Gameplay Trailer – Petr Cech’s Helmet Is Realistic

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LOOKS like Electronic Arts will not stop until Konami's Pro Evo series is just a warm, fuzzy memory. FIFA 11 will be huge, no doubt even if it's basically the same as FIFA 10.

Official gameplay trailer:

Screenshots (click to enlarge they got Wayne Rooney's hair loss spot-on):

I can't wait for everyone to play online as either Real Madrid or Barcelona.

Konami Tweaks Online Master League For PES 2011 – Pro Evo Back In Business?

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ON a slow news day in the real football world, we turn again to the world of football videogames.

As a longtime fan of the Pro Evolution series, at least until it lost its way a couple of years ago, I'm interested to hear of Konami's plans for the much-loved Master League mode.

Football Memes: John Terry, Brave England Hero

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ONE of the best consequences of England's dismal World Cup was the meme fun had with brave John Terry and his headfirst block.

The original incident, vs Slovenia:

The memes:

Love the internet.

FIFA 11 Lets You Play As The Goalkeeper – Fun Fun Fun

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EA's 'FIFA 11′, which launches at the end of September (with Kaka on the cover duh), has a host of new features, naturally. The most intriguing of these is the 'Be A Goalkeeper' mode:

"EA announced at gamescom today a "Be A Goalkeeper" feature for FIFA 11. You'll be able to play through the game's 15-year career mode as a goalie, or create one in Virtual Pro 2.

FIFA 11 Screenshots And Gameplay Trailer – Petr Cech’s Helmet Is Realistic

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LOOKS like Electronic Arts will not stop until Konami's Pro Evo series is just a warm, fuzzy memory. FIFA 11 will be huge, no doubt even if it's basically the same as FIFA 10.

Official gameplay trailer:

Screenshots (click to enlarge they got Wayne Rooney's hair loss spot-on):

I can't wait for everyone to play online as either Real Madrid or Barcelona.

Around The Grounds: Bloomfield Road, Blackpool

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TODAY'S Around The Grounds photo essay features Bloomfield Road, the modest home of Premier League high riders Blackpool.

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The statue of former Blackpool player Stan Mortensen, outside Bloomfield Road

Bloomfield FACT (via Wiki):

"Bloomfield Road hosted its 1,000th Football League game on 10 September 1960, with a visit by Lancashire neighbours Bolton Wanderers.

Samir Nasri Out For A Month With Knee Injury

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AFTER the relentless wave of horribly smug Arsenal Tweets 'The Yids have bottled it, LOL!' during last night's Young Boys laughterfest, it obviously gives me no pleasure to report that Samir Nasri is out for up to four weeks with a faaacked knee.

An official Arsenal statement read: "Arsenal midfielder Samir Nasri will today undergo minor surgery on his knee following a meniscal injury sustained during the match against Liverpool on Sunday.

What Is Real Madrid’s Best XI For The 2010-11 Season?

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JOSE Mourinho is quickly building his own team at Real Madrid. He gets the ownership thing: managers need to be fully accountable for their XIs; the good ones put their own unique stamp on a club, which usually involves getting rid of the previous gaffer's players and systems, and installing new ones.

Young Boys 3-2 Tottenham – ‘Great Defeat’ On Evil Astroturf Pitch

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WRITING as a Tottenham fan who damn near shat himself last night: We waited almost 50 years for this? Still, I know events at the Stade de Suisse provided much comedy value, for Arsenal fans in particular. You're welcome. We aim to please.

As Spurs were 3-0 down within 30 minutes and facing a nightmare scenario, to escape from the evil Wankdorf Stadium with a couple of away goals tucked into a fat brown envelope, in the Redknapp fashion was a huge relief.

Video: Which Player Was Late For Man Utd’s 2010-11 Team Photo?

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DIMITAR Berbatov, who rarely moves quickly, is a good guess. It's almost right. But one United star was even tardier than Berba, so much so that Fergie told him to get a move on...

Ten points if you answered Patrice Evra. Those Frenchies, they're trouble.

Nicola Anelka ‘Dying With Laughter’ At The Clowns Who Banned Him For 18 Matches

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A wonderfully French reaction by Nicolas Anelka to his 18-match international ban:

"The so-called punishment has no relevance whatsoever because, for me, the French national team was an issue which ended on June 19 when I was kicked out of the training centre at Knysna.

Ben Kantarovski Scores Epic Own Goal For Newcastle Jets (With Video)

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BRILLIANT instinctive finish by Kantarovski / Terrible defending by Kantarovski. This guy is multitalented.

@GaryAndrews



Top 10 Moustaches In Football – Joey Barton, Take Note

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JOEY Barton won't shave off his moustache until Newcastle United win their first game of the new season.

But Joey, that's not a moustache... THIS is a moustache (and nine other beauties from the football 'tache hall of fame):

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Bob Holmes - Preston North End and England stalwart, and owner of a tache so impressive it needed its own passport

Personal favourite has to be Ronald Spelbos's Dutch Handlebar.

WAG Abigail Clancy Goes Riding, Anelka Banned For 18 Games, Lionel Messi Loves Ashley Young

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By Ollie Irish

Some recommended football content:

TOP LINK A fine review of Match of the Day by our friend Alex Netherton Sabotage Times

Mutinous Nicolas Anelka hit with 18-game international ban! Surely he won't play again for France, even if the ban is reduced on appeal NY Times

WAG Abbey Clancy pulls on some riding gear, tries to forget about cheating Crouchy Goaly Moly

Chelsea want to work on Ashley Cole's public image.

Around The Grounds: Wankdorf Stadium, Young Boys

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By Ollie Irish

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The latest in our series of photo essays on football stadia features the tittersome Wankdorf Stadium in Bern (aka the less tittersome Stade de Suisse), home to the tittersome BSC Young Boys.

Tottenham Drop Captain Ledley King For Young Boys Clash – Astroturf Pitch Could ‘Kill’ Him

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By Ollie Irish

Tottenham skipper Ledley King won't play against Young Boys, because the Swiss club's artificial pitch represents too much of a threat to his dodgy knees.

"I have thought about the Astroturf and it could just kill Ledley completely, it could ruin his knee," Arry Redknapp said.

FIRST PHOTOS: Craig Bellamy At Cardiff City – ‘I’m At The Height Of My Career’

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By Ollie Irish

Some piping hot pics of the Enormous Bellend at his new club:

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Cardiff City's new loan signing Craig Bellamy poses for the media following a press conference at the Cardiff City Stadium.

I hear he was actually rather charming and gracious at his first press conference as a Cardiff player.

Snapshot: Stephen Ireland Says Farewell To Man City Team-Mates

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By Ollie Irish

On the same day that Mario Balotelli showed up, Manchester City's Stephen Ireland (right) shakes hands with team-mate David Silva as he leaves the Carrington training ground, almost certainly for the last time as a City player.

Viral Football: Stjarnan Show Off Two More Goal Celebrations (With Video)

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By Ollie Irish

Meh. Nothing like as inspired as the fishing celebration. That joke isn't funny anymore. In fact, it's rather annoying.

The Greatest Goal Celebration Ever



What Is Tottenham’s Best XI For The 2010-11 Season?

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By Ollie Irish

"My squad is triffic. Triffic bunch of lads. It's scary."

Okay, I'll handle this...

The formation: Arry as got his time tuned into a 4-4-2 formation, which may not be fashionable but it does seem to work with the players he has.

Craig Bellamy Chooses Cardiff City – Fulham And Celtic Miss Out

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By Ollie Irish

Craig Bellamy on one of his famous charm offensives

BREAKING: Looks like Man City bad boy Craig Bellamy has decided to get away from it all, by spending six months on loan at Cardiff City in the Championship. Yes, he's zipping up his boot bag and going back to his roots.

Photos: Man Utd 3-0 Newcastle – Scholes Majestic, Rooney MIA

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By Ollie Irish

Not the most convincing performance by Man Utd, but it would seem churlish to pick too many holes in a 3-0 win. However, when you look at how Chelsea demolished another promoted team on Saturday, you can only conclude that once again, Chelsea have the edge over Fergie's lot.

Sh*t Lookalikes: WAG Christine Bleakley & New ‘One Show’ Presenter Alex Jones

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By Ollie Irish

I read that the new 'One Show' presenters were pants, but this means nothing to me as don't watch the 'One Show'. If I did watch the 'One Show', it would only be proof that my life had taken a very wrong turn.

Oh, and if you're wondering what the hell this has to do with association football, Bleakley is currently going out with Frank Lampard.

Swapsies: James Milner To Man City (Confirmed), Stephen Ireland To Aston Villa

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By Ollie Irish

As predicted, Aston Villa have agreed to sell James Milner to Manchester City. The English midfielder will undergo a medical at Eastlands later today. Shouldn't be any problem there Milner is as fit as a butcher's dog.

The fee is reported to be £18m, plus City reject Stephen Ireland.

Photo Gallery: All 20 Premier League Away Kits For 2010-11

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By Ollie Irish

This year your team will be mostly wearing...

Pies presents a gallery featuring each Premier League away kit for the 2010-11 season (in alphabetical order from top left, Arsenal – Wolves), with the exception of Wigan, whose current away kit doesn't appear to have been launched yet.

FIRST PHOTOS – Mario Balotelli At Man City

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By Ollie Irish

Some f-f-f-fresh pics of Mario Balotelli's first day at his new club Manchester City. Click each image to view the high-res XL version:

At least Mario showed up he might have decided to go out and buy a couple of supercars instead, rather than face the media with a big grin and little English except "I no bad boy".

£12m Mesut Ozil Signs For Real Madrid – Fergie Misses Out Again

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By Ollie Irish

Yes, he does look a lot like Mr G

More proof that Man Utd are not much of a buying club these days: World Cup star Mesut Ozil, who was a genuine transfer target for Fergie, has signed for Real Madrid, officially (subject to a medical on Wednesday).

Liverpool Sign ‘Homegrown’ Goalkeeper Brad Jones As Back-Up To Reina

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By Ollie Irish

Liverpool are set to clinch the £2.3million signing of Brad Jones from Middlesbrough after the Australian goalkeeper passed a medical earlier today:

Photo: Liverpool FC

Jones, 28, qualifies as a 'home-grown' player under the new rules after joining Boro as a trainee in 2001.

Goal Of The Weekend: Dave Jones Flicks It Like Le Tissier, Wolves v Stoke

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By Ollie Irish

Brilliant tekkers by Jones, who didn't have much room to work with but absolutely nailed it, a la Le Tissier of old.

Great to see that Mick McCarthy is giving his players freedom to express themselves.



Photos: Liverpool 1-1 Arsenal – Pepe Reina Drops The Ball

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By Ollie Irish

This game was very dull until Joe Cole was sent off just before half-time for a rash tackle on Lauren Koscielny Cole's wife Carly watched on in horror. Then something clicked for Liverpool and they actually seemed to play better without Cole after the break.

Opening Day Photos: Chelsea 6-0 West Brom – I Need Your Clothes, Your Boots And Your Motorcycle

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By Ollie Irish

It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead

Chelsea win 6-0 in crushing fashion, but no one bats an eyelid. Such is the machine-like power of the reigning champions. If Didier Drogba isn't top scorer in the league this campaign, as I predicted, I will season a hat generously and eat it in one sitting.

Weekend Hero: Ian Holloway, Blackpool Manager

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By Ollie Irish

The Weekend Hero: Ian Holloway


Blackpool's gaffer gets the nod as our first Weekend Hero of the new season, for leading his unfancied team to a shock 4-0 win at Wigan Athletic. Twas the result of the weekend, no question.

What Is Man Utd’s Best XI For The 2010-11 Season?

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By Alex Netherton

"These wasps taste terrific." Alex Ferguson is essentially a coward in the big games nowadays, and last year didn't have the squad or the assistant manager to play 4-2-3-1 throughout the season. Here I'm assuming that all the players can cope with going back to the 2006-2008 tactics.

Opening Day Photos: Tottenham 0-0 Manchester City – Joe Hart Will Not Let You Pass

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By Ollie Irish

As a Spurs fan, this was immensely frustrating to watch. We flipping murderered 'em but couldn't find a way past Joe Hart, who gave one of the best goalkeeping displays I've ever seen in the Prem. Ever! Damn you, Joe.

Photo gallery:

Match report



Why Would Man City Allow Shay Given To Join Rivals Arsenal?

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By Ollie Irish

The majority of football rumourmongs seem certain that Shay Given will join Arsenal from Man City this week, probably on loan.

Arsenal crave a top-class goalkeeper, but why the hell would Roberto Mancini want to strengthen the team of a title rival and simultaneously weaken his own squad (especially after he had a goalkeeping mini-crisis last season)?

‘Disruptive’ Craig Bellamy Banned By Man City

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By Ollie Irish

Bellamy considers telling Mancini to "stick job right up arse"

According to Roberto Mancini, Craig Bellamy is "disruptive".

In other shock news:

Water gets you wet!

Alan Shearer is a terrible pundit!

Opening Day Photos: Wigan 0-4 Blackpool – The Shock Of The New

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By Ollie Irish

Crazy scoreline, crazy match. And briefly, Blackpool topped the league!

Wigan were about as bad as I can remember, relegation certs Blackpool were rampant and might have won by a couple more, though Wigan did have a goal wrongly ruled out for offside.

Video: The Newcastle United Moustache Challenge – Joey Barton FTW

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By Ollie Irish

Best tache goes to... Joey Barton, who currently looks like a WWII fighter pilot. Andy Carroll's facial furniture is a f*cking disgrace, frankly.

In other news, I would love it, just love it, if Newcastle don't win a game until 2011.

Ten Fearless Predictions For The New Premier League Season

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By Ollie Irish

With the new Premier League season less than 24 hours away, here's what is going to happen between now and May 2011. Get thee to a bookies. Or not.

1. Chelsea win the title, again (for reasons I have already laid out).

2.

FIRST PHOTOS – Christian Poulsen At Liverpool

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By Ollie Irish


For your consideration: Some piping-hot pics of Christian Poulsen at Liverpool's Melwood training complex. He looks like a Die Hard villain.

Photos: Martin Rickett/PA Wire/Press Association Images

What do we think: hit or shit?

Photo Gallery: All 20 Premier League Home Kits For 2010-11

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By Ollie Irish

This year your team will be mostly wearing...

A simple gallery featuring each Prem home kit for 2010-11 (in alphabetical order from top left, Arsenal Wolves):

What's your favourite? I'm a big fan of Arsenal's. There, I said it.

Top 20 Exciting Young Players To Watch In The Premier League

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By Ollie Irish

Here's a gallery of the young players I'm most excited about seeing in the Premier League this season. All are aged 21 or under. Several are English, which is encouraging.

Click on each image to enlarge:

Who are you most excited by?

Sh*t Lookalikes: David Coles (West Ham Goalkeeping Coach) & Bobby Davro (Unfunnyman)

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By Ollie Irish

I have met David Coles, when he was Pompey's goalkeeping coach, and the first thing I thought was 'Bloody hell, it's Davro!'

Lovely chap, David glad he's found a new job.

Spotter's badge:

Stewart Pickard

Got a Shit Lookalike for Pies?

Pies Prem Prediction League: Week 1

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By Ollie Irish

"Tell you what Manish, I really fancy a Chelsea home win."

Throughout the 2010-11 Premier League season, which begins tomorrow lunchtime, with Tottenham versus Man City (I'm scared), we'll be running the Pies Prem Prediction League.

What Is Liverpool’s Best XI For The 2010-11 Season?

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By Ollie Irish

How will new gaffer Roy Hodgson configure his Liverpool team? Don't worry about that for now. Remembering that this is just a bit of fun, I want you to pick Liverpool's best starting XI for the coming season.

I'll go first...

The formation: Uncle Woy loves a bit of 4-4-2, and he's dabbled with 4-4-1-1 in pre-season, with Joe Cole buzzing about the area we like to know only as 'the hole'.

Premier League Season Preview: Manchester City

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By Ollie Irish

City are building something amazing... but is it a team?

Goalkeepers Joe Hart appears to have taken over from Shay Given as the new No.1. What a tough call for Given, who has done nothing wrong since he was signed by Mark Hughes last year, and is still a fine keeper.

Bob Bradley Quits USA Job, Aston Villa Next?

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By Ollie Irish

I'm hearing whispers that scary Navy SEAL-type man Bob Bradley - who may or may not be part-machine has stepped down from his position as head coach of the US national team. We'll see.

If true, that would be the first part of the 2+2 sum which sees him end up in Martin O'Neill's old office at Villa Park.

Mario Balotelli Will Join Man City Today – £24m Fee

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By Ollie Irish

Super Mario Balotelli is on his way to England right now (he might have landed at Manchester Airport already), to undergo a medical at Man City.

This morning, City boss Roberto Mancini told hacks: "We are close with Balotelli.

Photo Gallery: Nottingham Forest Open New Club Shop

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By Ollie Irish

"They've rebadged it, you fool."

Nottingham Forest supporters came out in droves whatever that means for the official opening of their fancy new club shop, which is shiny and modern and twice the size of the old one. The shop looks very smart, as does the new home kit, of which I'm a very big fan.

England 2-1 Hungary – Captain Gerrard To The Rescue

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By Ollie Irish

For a while there it looked like England were about to lose on their own patch against a team with a goalkeeper wearing tracksuit bottoms. Holy shit, that would have been embarrassing. Happily for Capello and England, captain Steven Gerrard stepped up to the plate, scoring two goals the first was good, the second was world-class, the sort of phone-booth finish Kaka might have pulled off in his prime:

I was at Wembley to watch the match (many thanks to our friends at Umbro for that), and I thought it was an enjoyable match, made all the more enjoyable by some panto booing from England's most 'special' fans.

Pies Classics: John Fashanu Night, ‘The Day Today’

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By Ollie Irish

Still love this.

AWOOGA!!



England 2-1 Hungary – Captain Gerrard To The Rescue

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By Ollie Irish

For a while there it looked like England were about to lose on their own patch against a team with a goalkeeper wearing tracksuit bottoms. Holy shit, that would have been embarrassing. Happily for Capello and England, captain Steven Gerrard stepped up to the plate, scoring two goals the first was good, the second was world-class, the sort of phone-booth finish Kaka might have pulled off in his prime:

I was at Wembley to watch the match (many thanks to our friends at Umbro for that), and I thought it was an enjoyable match, made all the more enjoyable by some panto booing from England's most 'special' fans.

What Is Everton’s Best XI For The 2010-11 Season?

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By Ollie Irish

David Moyes: a fighty stare that is harder than any man's fist

Okay, here we go again, this time in the shoes of Moyesy. Remembering that this is just a harmless bit of fun, I want you to pick Everton's best starting XI for the coming season.

Chelsea Sign Neymar From Santos – £20m Fee

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By Ollie Irish

We hear on the footballvine that Brazilian wunderkind Neymar IS coming to Chelsea after all.

Chelsea's chief scout, Michael Emenalo, watched the 18-year-old forward score in Brazil's 2-0 win over the USA on Tuesday, and has since convinced Abramolotti to pay Santos in the region of £20m.

Liverpool Sign Christian Poulsen For £4.5m – Mascherano To Barcelona?

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By Ollie Irish

Poulsen gets down and dirty where he likes it

As expected, Danish hardman Christian Poulsen has signed for Liverpool, for a fee reported to be in the £4.5m ballpark.

This means Javier Mascherano has surely had his chips at Anfield, with Barcelona now a more likely destination than Inter.

Photos: Republic Of Ireland 0-1 Argentina – Offside Angel Di Maria FTW, Robbie Keane Joins 100 Club

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By Ollie Irish

With Trap still laid up in hospital, Angel Di Maria, newly signed by Real Madrid, scored the only goal of a less-than-thrilling friendly at the Aviva in Dublin. He was offside, blatantly, but the goal stood (what do they say about the Irish and luck not in football), thereby marring the occasion of Robbie Keane's 100th cap for Ireland.

WAG Victoria Beckham Pregnant Again?

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By Ollie Irish

Despite Victoria Beckham previously denying that she's pregnant, Australian magazine Famous (a bit like OK but even worse, if that's possible to imagine) boldly reports that she IS going to have a fourth baby soon she really, really hopes it's a girl this time.

Photos: Ivory Coast 1-0 Italy – Cesare Prandelli Starts With A Loss

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By Ollie Irish

It rained a lot at Upton Park. Kolo Toure scored the winner, meaning Cesare Prandelli lost his first match in charge of Italy (as did Marcello Lippi in 2004).

The way things are going, there's a real danger that Italy won't even qualify for Euro 2012.

Jamie Carragher Donates £10,000 To Andy Burnham’s Labour Leadership Campaign

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By Ollie Irish

Jamie Carragher, who of course was an Everton fan before he signed for Liverpool, has donated £10,000 to the Labour leadership campaign of MP Andy Burnham. What's that, like a day's wages? Anyway, it's clear Carra wants to put a fellow Scouser into No.

Capello Axes Beckham, Fails To Actually Tell Him

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By Ollie Irish

Feel the warmth

More proof of Fabio Capello's inability to form a meaningful relationship with anything but expensive artwork comes via his admission that he ended David Beckham's international career, in effect, but without bothering to tell Beckham before he announced it to the world.

Does Alex Ferguson Know What He’s Doing?

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By Alex Netherton

Does Alex Ferguson know what he's doing? It's the question a lot of Manchester United fans ask themselves, and most seasons end with the answer, "I won the league, youse are all fucking idiots."

For me, every year is the same. Until about October, interest is muted as I try to finally kick football out of my life.

The Match Of The Century: England 3-6 Hungary, 1953

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By Ollie Irish

"We thought we would demolish this team England at Wembley, we are the masters, they are the pupils. It was absolutely the other way."

The late Bobby Robson on how badly England underestimated Hungary.

November 1953: Led by the great Ferenc Puskas, the Mighty Magyars so fluid, so ahead of their time gave stiff England an arch lesson in the perils of inflexibility.

Premier League Season Preview: Liverpool

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By Ollie Irish

Can Uncle Woy take the Reds back into the top four?

Goalkeepers Pepe Reina is one of the best goalkeepers in the world and won't be leaving Liverpool any time soon. He's also a real cheerleader within the team and a very popular figure in the dressing room.

Photos: Newcastle United Open Training Session

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By Ollie Irish

Le Grand Sol

Pies has scraped together a few pics of Newcastle United's open training session, which took place today at St James' Park.

Waoh, Andy Carroll the one in the crop top looks like the scariest woman you've ever seen.

Top 10 League Cup Photos: Leeds Thrash Lincoln, Shrewsbury Stun Charlton, Bradford Beat Forest, QPR Shocked By Port Vale

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By Ollie Irish

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Bradford City's Simon Ramsden fires a freekick over the Nottingham Forest wall

A busy night of League Cup action yesterday, with some notable results: Shrewsbury beat Charlton 4-3, having been 3-0 down, whilst Leicester also came out on the right side of a seven-goal thriller, at home against Macclesfield.

Video (NSFW Language): Angry QPR Fan Can’t Take Defeat To ‘F**king’ Port Vale

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By Ollie Irish

Championship leaders QPR lost in the League Cup to Port Vale last night. At Loftus Road, no less.

I suspect Neil Warnock will be secretly delighted (he made several changes from the team that thumped Barnsley 4-0) to be out of the Mickey Mouse Cup.

Little Pea ‘Chicharito’ Is A Bit Tasty

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By Ollie Irish

It's acceptable, compulsory even, to hate Gary Neville or Sir Alex Ferguson. But not the Little Pea, who has become a cult hero at Old Trafford in no time. It's understandable: he's fricking adorable. Look at his face, just look at his little face!

Ricardo Carvalho Joins Mourinho’s Real Madrid Revolution – Chelsea Get €8m

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By Ollie Irish

Chelsea's Mr Vain, Ricardo Carvalho, is packing his hair products and potions, and teaming up again with Real Madrid's new Mr Vain, Jose Mourinho.

Yep, Real Madrid have signed Carvalho from Chelsea, for a fee reported to be around €8m.

England 2-0 Uzbekistan, Under-21 International – Why Isn’t Jack Rodwell In The Senior Squad?

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By Ollie Irish

What the hell is Jack Rodwell still doing in the England Under-21 squad? If Jack Wilshere and Kieran Gibbs are good enough for the senior squad, Rodwell is too. Why the wait? Today's friendly against Hungary represents the perfect opportunity to blood Rodwell who will surely be an England regular for the next decade, fitness permitting and other young English talents, but instead Capello sat and watched Rodwell run the show for England's Under-21s against Uzbekistan last night.

Aquilani’s Hot WAG, Craig Bellamy In Quit Threat, David Beckham At Teen Choice Awards

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By Ollie Irish

Links!!!

TOP LINK A stunningly good film about the 1982 World Cup semi-final between West Germany and France, aka the Battiston-Schumacher match From A Left Wing

Alberto Aquilani's WAG is out of his league Goaly Moly

Personal shopping for materialistic Premier League stars Kickette

Craig Bellamy in quit threat BBC

AEK Athens coach attacked by his club's fans Dirty Tackle

Top 6 Stjarnan goal celebrations The Spoiler

David Beckham with surfboard at the 2010 Teen Choice Awards Goaly Moly

Mascherano to Barcelona?

Armchair Gaffer: Aston Villa Fans, Would You Rather Lose James Milner Or Ashley Young?

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By Ollie Irish

Today's Armchair Gaffer features Aston Villa, of course.

The vultures are circling. They fancy a peck or two at the carcass Martin O'Neill left behind and who can blame them.

O'Neill has gone in the night, leaving Aston Villa without a manager just days before the start of the new season.

Larissa Riquelme Poses Naked Again (NSFW)

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By Herman Miller

Pies has 'stumbled' upon some new pics of Paraguay superfan (and Supermodel World Cup winner) Larissa Riquelme, and yes, we're going to milk them until the cows return. Some pics feature NSFW nudity, but this is Larissa we're talking about, so it's all very tasteful (ahem).

Anything Lionel Messi Can Do, Joe Cole Can Do Better – Steven Gerrard

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By Ollie Irish

Have fun with this, please. But play nice...

"[Lionel] Messi can do some amazing things, but anything he can do Joe [Cole] can do as well, if not better. He used to shock us in training by doing footy tricks with a golf ball that most players can't even do with a football.

What Is Chelsea’s Best Starting XI For The 2010-11 Season?

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By Ollie Irish

Someone tells Carlo Ancelotti he left the iron on

The disclaimer: I know modern Premier League teams have big squads which they rotate, and I know there's quite a difference between the team you pick for a home match and an away match.

Let’s Hear It For… Javier Zanetti

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By Ollie Irish

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Javier Zanetti - a proper footballer

Javier Zanetti, 36, has just signed a contract extension at Internazionale. His contract now runs until June 2013.

"I am happy and proud," Zanetti told inter.

Photos: England Training For Hungary Friendly

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By Ollie Irish

Yes! It's the friendly everyone is not talking about, and everyone didn't really need: England v Hungary at Wembley.

Anyway, Pies forced its way into England's training ground, disguised as Gary Cahill (well no one seems to know what he looks like), and took these photos:

Where is Michael Carrick, you ask?

Martin O’Neill Resigns As Aston Villa Manager – A Cowardly Act

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By Ollie Irish

Martin O'Neill has resigned as Aston Villa boss, with immediate effect. In a statement, he said: "I have enjoyed my time at Aston Villa immensely. It's obviously a wrench to be leaving such a magnificent club.

"I would like to pay tribute to the Villa players, my coaching staff and the Villa supporters for all the support and encouragement they have given both the club and me personally during my time as manager.

Sh*t Lookalikes Classics: Young Martin O’Neill and Jeanette Winterson

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By Ollie Irish

MoN in the days before he got grumpy and odd...

For those of you not up to speed with feminist fiction, Jeanette Winterson is a British author most famous for being a moody lesbian. She wrote 'Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit'.

Martin O'Neill is unemployed.

Barcelona Steal World Cup Star From Under Manchester United’s Noses?

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By Ollie Irish

Spanish newspaper El Pais is reporting that Barcelona have agreed a four-year deal with Werder Bremen to sign playmaker Mesut Ozil. The fee? Around €10m.

With no Cesc Fabregas, Barca see Ozil as a decent second choice, even though they are different types of player.

Snapshot: Stevenage 1-2 Portsmouth, League Cup – Michael Brown FTW

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By Ollie Irish

A view of Stevenage vs Portsmouth in the first round of the League Cup. Pompey won 2-1 at the Lamex Stadium, thanks to goals by youngster Nadir Ciftci and hardman (aka dirty bar steward) Michael Brown, and so progress to the second round.

Photo: Adam Davy / EMPICS

Darren Murphy scored the consolation for the home side (at the time, it was the equaliser to Ciftci's opener), a bit like this:

And he celebrated like this:

Click the photos to see the XXL versions.

Viral Football: Martin O’Neill And His Big Wrench

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By Ollie Irish

Well he did say it was 'a wrench' to leave the Villa...

"I have to say this is a magnificent wrench. Utterly magnificent."

Tony Cottam on the Pies Facebook Page nice spot, Tony.

In other O'Neill-related japes, our friends at Dirty Tackle report that some Villa players weren't exactly crying over their former gaffer's decision to walk away from the club.

Viral Football: Stjarnan Reveal Three New Goal Celebrations (With Video)

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By Ollie Irish

A few months ago, no one outside of Iceland had heard of Stjarnan FC. Now, thanks to their brilliant choreographed goal celebrations, they have become the most famous thing to come out of Iceland since, er... Bjork and strongmen.

This weekend they scored three goals in a win against Selfoss, and after each goal they showed off a new celebration:

Nothing as good as the genius fishing celebration, but it sure beats kissing your ring finger and pointing to the sky, or running to the corner flag with one arm raised aloft, or.

Martin O’Neill Quits As Aston Villa Boss – A Cowardly Act

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By Ollie Irish

Martin O'Neill has resigned as Aston Villa boss, with immediate effect. In a statement, he said: "I have enjoyed my time at Aston Villa immensely. It's obviously a wrench to be leaving such a magnificent club.

"I would like to pay tribute to the Villa players, my coaching staff and the Villa supporters for all the support and encouragement they have given both the club and me personally during my time as manager.

Premier League Season Preview: Chelsea

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By Ollie Irish

Champions again? Pies casts a beady eye over Chelsea's powerful squad...

Goalkeepers - Petr Cech, helmet and all, is vital to Chelsea, partyly because he's so solid and partly because his back-ups hardly befit a club of Chelsea's size.

Top 10 Championship Photos: David James’ Shocking Debut For Bristol City, Leeds Lose, Burnley Win

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By Ollie Irish

The best pics from the weekend's action in the Championship, featuring miserable David James, wondering quite why he chose to sign for Bristol City.

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Bristol City's David James shouts instructions to his defence.

What Is Arsenal’s Best Starting XI For The 2010-11 Season?

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By Ollie Irish

"Hmm, the chicken or the fish?"

Firstly, a disclaimer: I know modern Premier League teams have big squads which they rotate, and I know there's quite a difference between the team you pick for a home match and an away match. Just so we're clear on that.

We Are Manchester City: Look On Our Works, Ye Mighty, And Despair!

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By Ollie Irish

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini poses behind a powerful quartet of new and very expensive signings: (left to right) Aleksandar Kolarov, David Silva, Yaya Toure and Jerome Boateng.

This is what happens when money has no value; when money means both nothing (to City) and everything (to City's rivals).

Video: Louis Van Gaal Presented With Awesome Birthday Cake

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By Ollie Irish

This is a cake

In which irascible Bayern Munich manager Louis Van Gaal receives flowers, cheers and a f*cking amazingly elaborate yet wholly unappetising cake in honour of his 59th birthday.

Er, we don't want to be pedantic, but Bayern didn't actually win the Champions League last season but somehow a marzipan version of the CL trophy made it onto Van Gaal's cake, as well as a mini Van Gaal wearing lederhosen.

Liverpool Fans, Would You Buy Christian Poulsen Or Mathieu Flamini To Replace Mascherano?

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By Ollie Irish

Today's armchair gaffer dilemma asks you to pick Javier Mascherano's replacement.

Christian Poulsen is on Liverpool's radar and slated to replace Javier Mascherano if the Argentine signs for Inter. Indeed, there's talk the Dane may even have a medical at Liverpool today.

Photos: Manchester City 2-0 Valencia – Joe Hart Moves Ahead Of Shay Given In Pecking Order

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By Ollie Irish

We present some of the best pics of Man City's 2-0 friendly win over Valencia, in the shiny new format. For the record, City's goals were scored by striker Jo remember him and Gareth Barry. And Joe Hart played in goal, suggesting that he will start the season as City's first-choice No.

Video: Chelsea 1-3 Manchester United, 2010 Community Shield

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By Ollie Irish

Football pet hate No.3,257: People who call the Charity/Community Shield a 'curtain raiser'. Shudder. Like chalk on a blackboard.

That was a convincing performance by United, with Paul Scholes in vintage form (complete with mistimed tackling), but you really can't read much into it.

A Very Satisfying Photograph Of Ashley Cole

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By Ollie Irish

Many of us have probably imagined how it would feel to smack Cole in the head. Well played, that ball.



Peter Crouch Cheats On WAG Abigail Clancy With Teenage Prostitute?

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By Ollie Irish

The News of the Screws claims Peter Crouch cheated on girlfriend Abigail Clancy (one of our Top 10 Sexiest WAGs in the World) with a teenage prostitute. Ah, you can always trust the Screws to break a kiss-and-tell story on the eve of a new season.

LIVE Photo Blog: Chelsea 0-0 Man Utd, FA Community Shield

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By Ollie Irish

Latest pics appear at the top of the post (click refresh to update)...

Tinchy Stryder performs before the match:




England Goalkeeper Paul Robinson Retires From International Football – The Right Decision?

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By Ollie Irish

"No more trips to Belarus get in!"

Mere hours after he was selected for England's squad for Wednesday's ill-timed friendly against Hungary, Paul Robinson announced his retirement from international football. He's 30 years old.

Premier League Season Preview: Arsenal

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By Ollie Irish

First in the alphabet... first come May?

Goalkeepers Arsenal are a top-four team without a top-four goalkeeper still. A top-four keeper is one who makes very few mistakes, and therefore one who, crucially, inspires confidence in his defenders.

Jack Wilshere, Bobby Zamora & Kieran Gibbs In England Squad For Hungary Friendly – Crouch & Defoe Dropped

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By Ollie Irish

Three fresh new faces in England's senior squad for Wednesday's friendly against Hungary: Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere (as we told you earlier this week), Wilshere's team-mate Kieran Gibbs and Fulham striker Bobby Zamora.

SPONSORED POST – Men Agree Size Matters In The Bedroom, But Not In The Way You’d Imagine

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This is a sponsored post from Pfizer

According to new research by Pfizer, size really does matter in the bedroom. Apparently almost a third (32%) of men claim weight gain affects their confidence in the bedroom, whilst more than a third (34%) say that feeling unattractive gives them less confidence to initiate sex with their partner.

Video: Joe Cole v Rabotnicki, The Individual Highlights

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By OIlie Irish

A nice video of Joe Cole's sterling work against Dr Robotnik at Anfield:

Video via 101GreatGoals



BREAKING NEWS Fabregas Stays At Arsenal, Admits Move To Barcelona Was ‘Attractive’

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By Ollie Irish

In which Cesc breaks his silence and confirms what many of us suspected:

"Firstly, I would like to apologise to all the Arsenal fans for not speaking sooner about my future but I've not known what I was going to do until this moment.

"I cannot deny that joining a club like Barcelona was not an attractive move for me.

Crazy Icelandic Team Debut New Goal Celebration: ‘The Bike Ride’

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By Ollie Irish

Stjarnan everyone's favourite Icelandic footy team are at it again (watch from 30secs in):

Not quite as inspired as the awesome fishing routine, but then I don't see how any celebration can top that.



Top 10 FIFA 10 Videos On The Internet

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By Ollie Irish

With the news that FIFA 11 has an official release date (and an unfortunate cover star), here's our pick of the best FIFA 10 vids on the internet:

1. Ronaldo the Terminator oh, just kick it already.

2.

Classic Banners: ‘The Theatre Of Chips’, Scarborough

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By Ollie Irish

Spotted at Scarborough's McCain Stadium, during their FA Cup match against Chelsea in January 2004. Loving your work, people of Scarborough.

Sadly, the oh-so-tasty Theatre of Chips has since had its chips. The stadium is now derelict and due to be demolished if Scarborough Council pulls its collective finger out.

Gerard Pique Had An Affair With Pop Star Shakira?

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By Ollie Irish

There are rumours rumours that grow by the day, like Sol Campbell's waistline that Gerard Pique had a two-night stand with pop star Shakira, after they met at the 201o World Cup (Shakira was out there to do the Waka Waka, Pique to win the tournament).

Liverpool 2-0 Rabotnicki – The Day The Kop Fell In Love With Joe Cole

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By Ollie Irish

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Joe Cole, Liverpool

Phew. I think Liverpool and Joe Cole are going to get along just fine. Ditto Uncle Woy.

Cole delighted the Anfield faithful with a joyous, unshackled display of the sort he was rarely allowed to produce at Chelsea and he wasn't even taken off.

Wiki Wars: Young Boys 1-1 Tottenham

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By Ollie Irish

Champions League fun and japes with Wiki:

Part 1:

Part Deux:

I think that's a draw.

PS. I am enjoying this Friday immensely.



Mercenary Emmanuel Adebayor Sells Himself To Juventus

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By Ollie Irish

I get paid to do this

Reports in the Italian media claim that Emmanuel Adebayor issued a 'come and get me' plea yes, one of those to Juventus.

"I wanted to wear the City shirt and have a better season compared to last year," Adebayor was quoted as saying by Tuttosport.

Rave Dog Delighted That Cesc Fabregas Is Staying At Arsenal

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By Ollie Irish

Rave Dog, who is an Arsenal fan, understands that Fabregas is staying in north London for one more year...

That's the word. Apparently Cesc will announce today his intention to stay at Arsenal for at least one more season. And... relax.

Tottenham Fans Fancy Young Boys

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By Ollie Irish

All Spurs fans are begging for Young Boys at the Wankdorf this morning. It really would be the plum Champions League draw.

...

So these are the teams Tottenham could draw today (draw commences at 11am BST), in order of least preference:

Braga (conquerors of Celtic) don't want them, they look quite handy.

Arsenal Or Tottenham: Who Will Last Longer In The Champions League?

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By Ollie Irish

In the blue corner: Jermain Defoe thinks Tottenham will go farther than Arsenal in this season's Champions League. Big talk from the wee man, but I like his confidence. Of course, much depends on who Spurs draw in the qualifying round.

Champions League Qualifying Draw: Young Boys v Tottenham

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By Ollie Irish

The balls have spoken...

And it's Tottenham versus Young Boys. Of course! Who else!?

Phew, this is exactly the tie I wanted. Thanks Mr Uefa. Nudge nudge, wink wink.

It's off to the Wankdorf we go (the first leg is in Switzerland).

Photos: Airtricity XI 1-7 Manchester United – New Aviva Stadium Sees Eight Goals

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By Ollie Irish

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Manchester United team group during the Pre Season Friendly at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin.

So, a goal rush to mark the opening of the splendid new Aviva Stadium at Lansdowne Road in Dublin. Fergie dignified the occasion by fielding a strong side, so the lopsided scoreline was no big surprise.

Exclusive Photo Gallery: Arsenal Train At The Emirates, Fabregas Too

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By Ollie Irish

An open training day at the Emirates, starring... you know who:

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If Fabregas stays and Van Persie stays fit (for at least 75% of the campaign), Arsenal can win the league. But if either of those things fails to happen, I very much doubt they can.

Portsmouth Survive, Wayne Rooney And Pot Noodles, FIFA 10 Idiots, Liverpool Want Flamini

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By Ollie Irish

Some fine football content that caught my eye today:

TOP LINK The worst kind of online opponents on FIFA 10 Three and in

Portsmouth win latest survival battle BBC

There's only one Debt in Fulham Swiss Ramble

Name that England WAG's pink bottom Goaly Moly

Wayne Rooney found comfort in Pot Noodle The Spoiler

Javier Hernandez, lusted after?

Video: Cesc Fabregas Back Training With Arsenal, Looks Happy Enough

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By Ollie Irish

Proof if proof be need be that Cesc is staying at Arsenal this season. Maybe. Er, I'm not sure really. Who is?



Top 10 Sexiest Football WAGs In The World

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By Herman Miller

If this is what happens at the end of a slow news week on Planet Football, then I guess slow news weeks aren't such a bad thing.

Here is our definitive list of the Top 10 Sexiest WAGs In The World. The only criterion: they must currently be dating a footballer, or ex-baller.

Jack Wilshere Dropped By England U21s, Tipped For Senior England Debut

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By Ollie Irish

Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere has been left out of England's Under-21 squad for Tuesday's friendly against Uzbekistan.

This means, almost certainly, that Wilshere is set to be picked in England's senior squad, for Wednesday's friendly against Hungary.

Russian Leagues 0-1 Freezing Winter Hell

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By James Appell

Siberia: there is a more desolate place on Earth than Hull

Winter in Russia isn't usually the most pleasant time to venture outside. During January and February the temperature regularly plunges to minus 30 degrees Centigrade, while in the bleakest parts of Siberia temperatures have been known to hit minus 60.

Photos: Celtic 2-1 Braga, Champions League – Well That Didn’t Last Long

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By Ollie Irish

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Celtic's Shaun Maloney and Bragas Osorio Alan during the Champions League, third qualifying round, second leg at Celtic Park, Glasgow.

After the spirit-crushing 3-0 defeat at Braga in the first leg, Celtic's Champions League adventure was over almost before it kicked off.

Because I’m Worth It: Did Mario Balotelli Ask Man City For £180,000 A Week!?

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By Ollie Irish

Several sources are reporting that Mario Balotelli's move to Man City is off because the teenager and his people asked for a salary of £180,000 a week, plus image rights.

Oh, that is a good one. City can afford to pay that much, but their problem is, everyone knows they can afford to pay that much.

Club America 2-3 Real Madrid – Cristiano Ronaldo Scores Winner In Mourinho’s First Match In Charge

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By Ollie Irish

Video via 101GreatGoals

Jose Mourinho won his first game in charge of Real Madrid, 3-2 in a friendly against Mexico's Club America. Of course he did. Did you expect anything less? Mourinho is a natural born winner and I can't wait to see Real and Barcelona crack heads this season.

Photos: Wigan Athletic 1-3 Real Zaragoza – N’Zogbia Scores, May Yet Leave Latics

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By Ollie Irish

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Wigan's Hugo Rodallega battles with Real Zaragoza's Carlos Diogo during the Pre Season Friendly at the DW Stadium, Wigan.

Wigan fell to their first pre-season defeat, and in front of their home fans (all 73 of them joking).

Real Madrid Superstar Out For Two Months With Knee Injury

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By Ollie Irish

This morning Real Madrid star Kaka visited a knee specialist in Belgium home of fine beer, fries, mussels and knee specialists and was told he'll need surgery on his left knee. As a result, he is set to miss the first two months of the season.

Photos: Javier Mascherano And Roy Hodgson Together At Liverpool’s Training Ground – This Is Awkward

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By Ollie Irish

I'm no body language expert, so see if you can spot the grumpy Liverpool player who'd rather be in Milan...

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Liverpool's Joe Cole during the training session at Melwood Training Centre, Liverpool.

New Man Utd Away Shirt Is Very Dull, Like A Training Top

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By Ollie Irish

So the leaked pics were spot-on...

Cheap, unimaginative and without class. But enough about Darron Gibson. (Ho ho ho. Ho.)

Jokes aside, United's new away shirt looks, er, like a rather basic training top. Nike could surely have come up with something more inspiring than this?

Mark Hughes Better Than ‘Bugger’ Roy Hodgson – Al Fayed’s Pathetic Rant

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By Ollie Irish

Fulham owner Mohamed Al Fayed has attacked Roy Hodgson for walking out on the Cottagers to join Liverpool.

Al Fayed said: "We gave him [Hodgson] all the support, we believed in him and he let us down. It's no problem because Mark [Hughes, the new Fulham manager] is much better.

Do You Want Rafa Benitez To Succeed At Inter?

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By Ollie Irish

Following in the giant steps of Jose Mourinho is probably the toughest job in football, and that's exactly what Rafa Benitez must do as the new manager of Internazionale. It's a daunting prospect and I reckon Rafa's chances of success are slim to none.

Rammie The Ram Wins ‘Daffodil Derby’ Football Mascot Race

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By Ollie Irish

It's appropriate that Derby's mascot, Rammie the Ram, should win the inagural 'Daffodil Derby', a race which was part of the official launch of the new partnership between The Football League and Marie Curie Cancer Care. Shame that idiot Lovejoy had to show up.

Kelly Brook Gets Naked For Reebok Ad

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By Herman Miller

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Kelly Brook is seen in Battersea, London, where she unveiled her new poster for Reebok Easytone Trainers

What, it's a slow news day. And Kelly did make it to the semi finals of our Supermodel World Cup, where she was knocked out by Miranda Kerr, so.

Skills: Canadian Footballer Celebrates Touchdown With Keepy-Up Soccer Celebration

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By Ollie Irish

"Boy, the French soccer team could have used him."

Nice mic work, Peter.

Cute skills, shoulderpad man. Perhaps you're in the wrong sport not that I class gridiron as a sport. It's 'Gladiators' with more commercials.

Spotted over at The Spoiler.

Benayoun Smarter, More Obedient Than Joe Cole – Carlo Ancelotti

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By Ollie Irish

"Yossi Benayoun, Yossi Benayoun, Yossi Benayoun..."

Quote of the day comes from Chelsea boss Charlie Ancelotti, speaking to the Sun about his reasons for replacing Joe Cole with Yossi Benayoun.

"Joe Cole is quicker than Benayoun but Yossi is better tactically.

Football Quiz: Spot The Idiot

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By Ollie Irish

Five points if you can spot the idiot. Fun for all the family!

Answer: It's our old friend Tim Lovejoy, of course, surrounded by mascots before the annual football mascot race. We'll bring you pics and video of the race later today, as well as the identity of this year's winner.

Skills: American Footballer Celebrates Touchdown With Keepy-Up Soccer Celebration

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By Ollie Irish

"Boy, the French soccer team could have used him."

Nice mic work, Peter.

Cute skills, shoulderpad man. Perhaps you're in the wrong sport not that I class gridiron as a sport. It's 'Gladiators' with more commercials.

Spotted over at The Spoiler.

Rio Ferdinand Fears Doing A Poo In A Train Toilet

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By Ollie Irish

A fresh, steaming tweet from Rio Ferdinand's official Twitter account (@rioferdy5 yes, it is really him, he called up Talksport to verify it):

So Rio hates going for a No.2 in a train toilet. He's just like us normals!

(Please do tell us if you think Pies' journalistic standards are slipping.

Photos: Mark Hughes Unveiled As New Fulham Manager

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By Ollie Irish

A few brand-new pics of Mark Hughes taken at Craven Cottage, during his first press conference as Fulham's manager:

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Fulham's new manager Mark Hughes is unveiled at Craven Cottage with chairman Mohamed Al Fayed

Hughes said at the conference: "I made the decision that this is the right club for me at this time.

Franck Ribery Is Hilarious

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By Ollie Irish

Franck Ribery clowns around with Bayern team-mate David Alaba (@ Bild)

Oh Franck, stop it. You are hil-arious enough simply to look at without this.

You really wouldn't know Ribery was facing three years in prison after admitting to sex with an underage prostitiute.

Around The Grounds: Portman Road, Ipswich Town

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By Ollie Irish

Our series of photo essays celebrating British football stadia continues today with a look at Portman Road, home to Ipswich Town since 1884.

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Portman Road FACT: "In 1914, the ground was commandeered by the British Army for use as a training camp for the duration of the First World War.

Photos: Everton Train For Everton Chile Friendly

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By Ollie Irish

Everton play namesakes Everton Chile, aka Everton de Vina del Mar, in a friendly at Goodison on Wednesday evening (buy tickets).

We have some exclusive pics of Moyesy's boys in training for that match:

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Everton's Mikel Arteta during a training session at the Finch Farm training centre

Ooh, look at Mikel Arteta's manly yet smooth thighs!

Fernando Torres Staying At Liverpool: ‘I’m At The Best Club In The Country’

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By Ollie Irish

So Fernando Torres is staying at Liverpool... for now. In an interview with Liverpoolfc.tv, he confirmed that he is happy to stay at 'the best club in the country' (no laughing at the back).

Some choice quotes from the interview:

On new manager Roy Hodgson:

"I really appreciated the fact that Roy came out to see me while I was on my holidays.

The Big Question: Where Will Aston Villa Finish This Season?

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By Ollie Irish

"Honestly I couldn't care less whether I get unfairly criticised.

"What I will say is the business that we did in the last few days of August last year really made our season.

"You go by the rules and run that length of time.

Brazil Star Ramires Will Sign For Chelsea Soon, £17m Fee Rumoured

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By Ollie Irish

Chelsea are closing in on the signing of young Brazil star Ramires. A deal for the highly rated Benfica midfielder should be signed and sealed by the end of the week, subject to a medical.

With Yossi Benayoun in for Joe Cole, Ramires would fill the Michael Ballack-shaped hole at the Bridge, even if he's more of a destructive midfielder than the German.

Cristiano Ronaldo Takes Raul’s No.7 Shirt At Real Madrid, Benzema Moves To No.9, Xabi Alonso Takes No.14

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By Ollie Irish

All change in Real's dressing room:

As Pies told you last week, Cristiano Ronaldo will take over Raul's No.7 shirt at Real Madrid so CR9 reverts to CR7, as he was at Old Trafford. That's not all...

Striker Karim Benzema will take Ronaldo's old No.

Manchester United To Sign Real Madrid Defensive Midfielder?

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By Ollie Irish

Lasagne Diarra, delicious with a cheeky glass of Merlot

A new rumour in heaven tonight: Man Utd want to sign Real Madrid midfielder Lassana Diarra (@ Mirror).

This one actually makes sense, as with Sami Khedira now installed at the Bernabeu, you imagine Diarra's first-team chances will be strictly limited this season.

Top 20 Football Photos Of The Weekend, 1-2 August 2010 – Arsenal Win Emirates Cup, Ben Foster Wears Leggings

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By Ollie Irish

A selection of the weekend's best football pics, featuring Arsenal's victory in the Emirates Cup, plus Birmingham City keeper Ben Foster wearing white leggings. Enjoy...

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Arsenal celebrate winning the Emirates Cup

Photos: PA

The previous weekend's best footy pics



Classic Banners: ‘We’re Not Fickle. We Just Don’t Like You’, Villa Park, 2006

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By Ollie Irish

Aston Villa v Fulham, Villa Park, March 2006: God bless Villa fans for telling then-manager David O'Leary what they really thought of him.

If you recall, pig-nosed egotist O'Leary had branded some Villa fans a 'fickle mob' after they booed their own team during a League Cup match against Wycombe.

Emotional Cesc Fabregas In Tears At Barcelona Tribute

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By Ollie Irish

Pies is a wee bit late on this, as I was away 'fishing' yesterday, but hey, who am I to deny you this grainy clip of Cesc in tears at some award ceremony in Spain. Did he cry at the sight of his young self in a Barcelona shirt, and all those people shouting "Go to Barcelona, you idiot!

Flamengo Goalkeeper Bruno Charged With Horrific Murder Of Ex-Girlfriend

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By Ollie Irish

Police in Sao Paulo have charged suspended Flamengo keeper Bruno with the grisly murder of his ex-girlfriend. Eight of Bruno's friends and family members have also been charged in the killing of 25-year-old model Elizio Samudio (pictured above), who disappeared in June 2010.

Man Utd’s Anderson ‘Fine’ After Fiery Car Crash

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By Ollie Irish

Man Utd midfielder Anderson remember him? may be investigated by Portuguese police after his supercar was involved in a heavy crash on a road in Braga, in the early hours of Sunday morning.

The Brazilian escaped with only minor injuries after the white Audi R8, which was carrying two other passengers (it's a two-seater!

Pies Classics: Flamengo Keeper Bruno Gutted To Miss Out On Award

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By Ollie Irish

In which Flamengo No.1 Bruno yes, the very same loses out to Gremio's Victor in the 'best keeper' section of the Brazilian league awards, in 2009:

We first posted this in December 2009, and had a jolly good laugh at Bruno's expense look at his gormless face!

Video: Japanese Team Copy Icelandic ‘Fishing’ Goal Celebration

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By Ollie Irish

Zero marks for originality, not much more for execution...

Nothing like as good as the original, frankly although I liked the first part here, where Makino tumbled like a demented ninja.



Tottenham Target Three Cheap Loan Signings

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By Ollie Irish

Triffic, just don't ask questions...

Tottenham gaffer Harry Redknapp is set to dip into the loan market to strengthen his squad. Yep, someone set Arry to full-on 'wheeler dealer' mode.

After failed bids for Scott 'Scotty' Parker and Manchester City forward Craig 'The Mouth' Bellamy, Arry will do what he does best: rummage around in the bargain bins, make trips to car boot sales, take whatever fell off the back of that jacknifed lorry.

Flamengo Goalkeeper Bruno Charged With Horrific Murder Of Ex-Girlfriend

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By Ollie Irish

Police in Sao Paulo have charged suspended Flamengo keeper Bruno with the grisly murder of his ex-girlfriend. Eight of Bruno's friends and family members have also been charged in the killing of 25-year-old model Elizio Samudio (pictured above), who disappeared in June 2010.

Men agree size matters in the bedroom, but not in the way you’d imagine

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Sponsored post from Pfizer

According to new research by Pfizer, size really does matter in the bedroom. Apparently almost a third (32%) of men claim weight gain affects their confidence in the bedroom, whilst more than a third (34%) say that feeling unattractive gives them less confidence to initiate sex with their partner.

Another Barcelona Star Joins New York Red Bulls – Time To Take MLS Seriously?

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By Ollie Irish

... And that star is Rafael Marquez. Underwhelmed, much? You shouldn't be.

After some umm-ing and a bit of err-ing, the Mexico captain has agreed to team up with Thierry Henry and co. in NYC.

It's a very solid signing for the Red Bulls.

Who Ate All The Pies Gone Fishing For The Day

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By Ollie Irish

On holiday today, and Chris too.

Pies will be back tomorrow.

Cheers, Ollie.