SoccerLens Archives for January 2008

Life Without Football For A Footballer

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This is my first post in a while so I thought I would talk about the less than serious points of the beautiful game. I have one very simple question to answer in this article; what would a footballer do if football didn't exist? To put it kindly, footballers would have bugger-all in terms of usage [.

Central Coast Mariners: February 08 Review

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Game of the Month: Central Coast 3-0 Newcastle Jets Overcoming all the odds, we took the Jets to piece in front of a packed Bluetongue after extra time. Player of the Month: Danny Vukovic Tried to deliver justice in the Grand Final, despite the best efforts of Mark Shield. We're behind you! Goal of the Month: Sash Petrovski v [.

Alan Shearer on Newcastle’s troubles, King Kev, England under Capello and his own future

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The Newcastle United legend gives his thoughts on Keegan's start at Newcastle, and what the future holds for the beleaguered club; discusses the England squad under Fabio Capello; and his own future coaching and management plans. WPvideo 1.10 Download this video Wednesday 27th February 2008: Shearer was in London to launch ‘Have Your Say', the biggest global [.

Game 39 isn’t dead in the water yet

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The Premier League's controversial announcement to host an extra round of games overseas hasn't been halted by the worldwide opposition to the plans, according to notes released from the Football Supporters' Federation's meeting with the league's chief executive Richard Scudamore. Despite strong opposition from FIFA's President, Sepp Blatter, and supporters' groups along with concerns from [.

Serious Analysis By The Football Press

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As a writer on this site, a site that takes it's football seriously and looks to go into some depth to analyse the game, I am constantly reading, talking to people looking at fansites etc, in order to find the big news stories and try to make sense of them for the readers. There is no [...]

Soccerlens Daily - Paranoid Arsenal, Angry Chelsea, Confused Newcastle, Tottenham in China and more

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Some people got pissed off yesterday on a few of the articles. Here's the thing - personal abuse (i.e. calling the author shite) is not on. You want to do that, go and setup your own blog. If you're going to comment, do the responsible thing and criticise the opinion instead of the man. On [...]

Championship predictions - Watford, Bristol City and Ipswich to march on towards the Premier League (Or, your guess is as good as mine!)

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"You're writing a review of the championship games every Monday, so why don't you do a preview of the games on Fridays?" Ahmed said to me. "No problem, I'll start this week," I said. "Yes," Ahmed continued, "Just do a preview and make some predictions" That's where I hit a big problem. As I said in this week's [.

Weekend Predictions: Manchester United, Arsenal, Everton, Manchester City and Sunderland to win, can Liverpool, Tottenham, Newcastle United, Middlesbrough and C

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As One Door Shuts...A Nutter One Opens For some inexplicable reason, the subject of mental illness remains taboo. I am convinced that if we debate the topic in a mature and sensitive fashion, we could raise awareness of the constant unnecessary stigmatisation of these unfortunate lunatics. I'm not embarrassed to admit that I used to regularly [.

Soccerlens Daily: Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester United, Everton, Arsenal and Euro 2008

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Since Graham's been going on and on about predictions, here are a few I've made in the past (1, 2, 3, 4). I got a few specific ones wrong (David Jones was sold, Alan Smith was sold, Rossi was sold) but in hindsight, that was wishful thinking. I got a few key ones right [...]

Inter Milan 1-1 Roma: Francesco Totti’s Scudetto Dreams Crushed by Javier Zanetti (Serie A Matchday 25)

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You know, if there is someone who I've always had the utmost respect for, throughout all these winless years (let's face it, until 2006 Inter Milan hadn't won squat for the past two decades, save for a measley UEFA Cup in 1998), it's Javier Zanetti. He's been the heart of the Nerazzurri ever since [.

Style Over Stamina: Why it’s time British children had a ball at their feet

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England's failure to qualify for Euro 2008 has had fans, officials and journalists alike busily arguing over the state of the English national game. It's not exactly all going swimmingly. Steve McClaren's appointment was as much a symptom as it was a cause, but the first signs that Brian Barwick actually intends to remedy [.

Fighting Dark Magic and Cold Weather: the Non-scoring Tale of Aruna Dindane

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He hasn't scored in the French Ligue 1 since December 8, and in the African Cup of Nations, his performance was average at best. What on Earth seems to be the problem for Ivorian striker Aruna Dindane? Dark magic, that's what. At least according to some people back in Africa... Straight from the headlines of L'Équipe [.

Liverpool Watch: Mascherano to sign, Hicks to buy out Gillett, what Carragher did and the fan-based LFC bid

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A lot to talk about Liverpool today - the way the fan-based bid for the club is going, the whole deal with DIC and Hicks and Gillett, Mascherano's new deal and my favourite, Carragher getting arrested for 'common assault' earlier this weekend (he was released on bail, don't get too happy). The fan-based bid has [.

An Early Look at the 2008 Clausura and Copa Libertadores

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Hasta El Gol Siempre's Sam Kelly takes an early look at the start of Argentina's football season - namely the 2008 Clausura and the Copa Libertadores. The 2008 Torneo Clausura is three weeks old, and already Argentina's got a club at the top of the league table who haven't been there for a little while.

WagSnatch Roundup: The Beckhams, Gazza’s Coke Habit, Tottenham’s Finest, Manchester United’s Real Stars and Cat Fights

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In this week's WagSnatch Roundup is Gazza finally on the mend, the Spurs boys are still celebrating, not one but two WAGs get into a catfight, Beckhams exposed and moving on up, Cheryl Cole goes back to her roots and the strangest pulling technique ever. Gazza on the mend? The biggest story by far [.

Carling – probably not the best cup competition in the world

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"If the FA Cup final is football's Ascot, then the League Cup final is its Derby Day." – Alan Hardaker Now that the euphoria over my beloved Spurs' Carling Cup win has abated somewhat, I thought it might be a good time to voice an idea as to how to salvage the dignity of a competition [...]

Soccerlens Daily - Liverpool and Chelsea in Crisis, Manchester United accused of tapping-up, Manchester City, Barcelona, Sunderland, Middlesbrough and more

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Something you folks didn't know about Paul Gascoigne: Handed £1000 over to Jimmy Five Bellies after betting that the burly boozer couldn't withstand a cigarette lighter's heat on the bridge of his nose for five seconds. Jimmy could. Twice. More on Gascoigne, plus Israel, Iran, Italy, Idiots and the Premier League (just about par for the [.

Getting Personal Review

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If you're running short on gift ideas for an upcoming birthday, look like the most thoughtful person in the world (what did you do?!), or get a jump on your own Christmas wish list, you're in luck, because Getting Personal likely has what you're looking for. Getting Personal backs up their name by being one [.

Will Capello turn to Chelsea captain John Terry?

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John Terry's season just seems to go from bad to worse. Chelsea coach Ten Cate has admitted to a 'bust up' with Terry prior to the Carling Cup Final defeat on Sunday. "We are both kind of emotional, but we respect each other fully," Ten Cate told The Sun. "We just had a discussion about the intensity [.

The rise and fall of Oxford United

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Oxford United's relegation from the football league in 2006 was a boon to pub quiz writers. A disastrous season meant they were now the only English team to win a major domestic honour to be playing non-league football, while simultaneously being replaced in the league by Accrington Stanley, a team they'd replaced in 1962 [.

Boca Juniors & The Amoias of the Americas

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Images courtesy of Oscar R. Amoia. One of the great things about the Internet is that the world has become a smaller place. If you view my blog and world football site, I state that the whole world is united by a ball. For me, it means something very personal. In 2004, I received an interesting email.

Do Football Managers need to do an ‘Apprenticeship’?

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Former Liverpool boss Gerard Houllier says English footballers are pushed into top management jobs too quickly. He has told the BBC Inside Sport programme that he believes Bryan Robson, Stuart Pearce and Gareth Southgate all took on senior positions far too soon. "In France, you cannot become a manager when you step out of your [.

Professional Footballers’ Association - How The PFA Helps Players

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"You give your life to football and then it often forgets you. Football clubs have a bad habit of taking players in, making the most of them, and then vomiting them up once they're too old or injured [...] That's where the Professional Footballers' Association are so wonderful, because they do not forget anyone".

The Soccerlens Daily: Drunk Tottenham Players, Manchester United Contracts and more

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It feels like Thursday afternoon although it's just Tuesday morning (or afternoon in my part of the world). So, allow me to rush through today's news roundup (juicy as always) as we struggle with weight issues and the obvious lack of time in our lives. The News That Matters I told you I was rushing.

A Football Fan’s Guide to Switzerland and Austria for Euro 2008

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In a cliché world everyone in Switzerland and Austria walks around in Lederhosen, quaffing down Wurst, Schnitzel and large vats of foamy lager, whilst trekking up large mountains with large dogs, socks pulled up yodelling about Ricola. In reality Lederhosen is a German fashion item and the only yodelling that still exists is in [.

Lower League Roundup: Stoke City, Swansea, MK Dons, and Aldershot all in the catbird’s seat

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While the Premier League title race rages on, things are edging closer to completion below the top flight. There are limited spots on the elevator up, but there are plenty of teams trying to throw some elbows and trip some others up to secure their place on the next level. Championship There's a [.

Premier League Round 27: Manchester United catching up on Arsenal as Everton and Liverpool favs for 4th spot

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I won't mention anything about what happened to Arsenal's Eduardo over the weekend, since it's been talked about plenty already, but I send my get well wishes towards him, and hope he's back scoring goals (but not against Manchester United) again as soon as possible. It was a pretty important weekend of football in the [.

Chelsea Watch: Why is Avram Grant being criticised?

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The monotony was finally ended on Sunday as Tottenham became the first club outside the top four to win a trophy in England since Middlesbrough in 2004. It was a deserved victory by Ramos' men as they come from back from a goal down to beat Chelsea. But as one manager is receiving praises for [...]

The Great Race for the Premiership: Stoke, Bristol, Watford, West Brom, Plymouth, Charlton or …?

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This is the first of what will become a weekly round up of the events in the English Championship. A chance for me to let everyone know how my beloved Watford are doing, and to let you know how much hair I have left and how much of it has gone grey. The answers to those [...]

La Liga Week 25: Barcelona back in the race as Real Madrid lose at home

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If Real Madrid fail to win their 31st league title this season, they may well look back at this week as being where they lost it. Madrid conceded a ridiculous goal which gave Getafe a 0-1 win at the Bernabeu and allowed Barcelona to reduce the points difference to just two. Only four weeks ago [...]

Who’d be a Football Writer?

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I haven't been a full-time football writer for very long. I absolutely love doing it, and I genuinely think I've got an opinion worth sharing. It isn't always one that many people agree with. In fact, in some cases it's hard to find anyone, but it usually lead to good debates, which is what writing [.

Chelsea v Tottenham 07/08 Carling Cup Final - Ref Watch

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There were some beautiful scenes at Wembley yesterday as Tottenham lifted the Carling Cup. Essien and Zokora shaking hands as the Chelsea man made his way off the pitch, the delight on Woodagte's face after he scored what turned out the winner and, most of all, the tears (or what looked like tears anyway) in [.

How About an Indian-Style Football Premier League?

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I felt a mixture of bemusement and enjoyment as I sat and watched the fascinating and lively auction for cricket's upcoming Indian Premier League. But once I'd got over the amusement of seeing players being bought for different teams in an auction house and awarded their price as wages with no choice as to [.

Are Liverpool In Denial?

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The Scousers are famed for their sense of humour. Not that there are many Liverpudlians of a red persuasion laughing at the moment after Barnsley's impudent victory at Anfield last Saturday, a result which has condemned Rafa Benitez's boys to be the butt of everyone's jokes for the next few days. It's human nature – [.

Soccerlens Daily: Tottenham beat Chelsea, Setting Manchester United’s History Straight, Stan Collymore and more

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A very good morning to Tottenham fans and those who don't like Chelsea - Tottenham beat Chelsea 2-1 in the Carling Cup final yesterday in an emotional, gripping game that went to extra time (but thankfully, not penalties). On to today's news, where Nigeria are holding Moyes's family hostage (or planning to, at least), [.

Gallas tantrum shows that Arsenal are feeling the pressure

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On Saturday morning, with some bookmakers, you could get odds as low as 8/11 on Arsenal regaining the Premier League title. And with their lead over Manchester United standing at five points with just twelve league games to play, some people may have argued those odds as fair. Yet flick through the sports pages and websites [.

Tottenham 2-1 Chelsea - Carling Cup Final - Goal Videos

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Chelsea v Tottenham threatened to be a goal-fest what with Tottenham's attacking prowess and weak defence. However, with Woodgate and King starting for Tottenham (and Kaboul joining them late on), this Tottenham side finally learned to defend and not just defend but defend with poise. The game will go down in history as one [.

Coach’s Corner

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Hello SL readers and welcome to what I hope will become a regular feature here on the website. As a young and aspiring coach within the game I approached Ahmed with the idea of getting my views and analysis heard on the SL stage. He liked the idea and so here we are. It [...]

Slavery in Football

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The subject of slavery is one that rouses reactions verging from the understandably passionate to the frankly irrational. I can recall with a pang of melancholy the furore issuing from José Mourinho's assertion that the French Football Federation's treatment of Claude Makelele was tantamount to slavery.

Time for Tottenham to swap nostalgia for success

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I've never been the most patient of individuals and on the eve of watching Tottenham Hotspur in their first cup final in six years, frankly, I'm a mess. I've often heard footballers talk about how they can't sleep the night before a big match, or how the preparation for a game is much harder than actually [.

Newcastle United 1-5 Manchester United - Goal Videos

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A football club is measured by it's strength of character away from home and the ability to fight hard and dominate at home. On last night's evidence, Newcastle United have gone backwards this season, although it just might be under Keegan (although to play Manchester United twice after kicking out Sam Allardyce makes Big [.

The Soccerlens Daily - Arsenal v Usmanov, Tottenham v Chelsea, Manchester United v Newcastle United goals, Liverpool scared and more

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Our thoughts to go Arsenal's Eduardo da Silva, a talented young footballer who will miss the rest of the season (and maybe the rest of the year, what with rehabilitation and getting match-fit) and especially Euro 2008. Good luck with your recovery mate, get well soon. Also, props to Wenger for retracting his comments [.

You Are All Invited to the France-Nike Wedding, the Couple is Registered for €320m

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A shirt worth its weight in gold. Litterally. Latest news on Friday: France has officially changed its team sponsor. Yup, no more Adidas for Les Bleus, enter Nike. The contract (which should run from the period of 2011 to 2018) has apparently been reported to amount €320m (£240m) for the period of 7 years, [.

Exposing The Mob Rule In Football

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The globalisation of football is a fact - once that genie got out of the bottle, there is no way on earth, heaven or hell that you could put it back in. Football is now a universal game, and it will continue to grow as the #1 sport around the world. The commodification of football [...]

The Soccerlens Daily - Rafa’s Email Address, future Manchester United coaches, Game 39 and more

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While we wait for the least-important-cup-final-for-Premier-League-clubs, let's look at today's news (or lack thereof). 1. What is Rafa's Email Address? We are told that Tom Hicks sends Rafa Benitez an email now and then. While MSM hacks (mainstream media journos) focus on the trite and arbitrarily constructed conflict between owners and manager, I have a much [.

Weekend Predictions: Chelsea to beat Tottenham, Manchester United to beat Newcastle United, Arsenal and Liverpool to win, Manchester City and Everton to draw

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In a week where Mohammed Al Fayed has pointed an accusing finger at Tony Blair, the Nazis, Dracula and a crocodile, it seems odd that Richard Scudamore has emerged as football's leading figure of fun. When a friend told me that Scudamore planned to play a round of matches overseas, I thought it was the worst [.

Weary Ronaldo holding off Adebayor for Player of the Year

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All bets were off two weeks ago but since returning from Portugal's friendly defeat to Italy Cristiano Ronaldo has looked a pale shadow of the world-beating uber-confident star that lit up the Premiership's last six months. After a frustrating Manchester derby and an insipid display in Lyon (he missed the 4-0 Arsenal wrecking) – could [.

The Longest Winning Streaks in Football History

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I have written on this site before about the rise of Salisbury City football club. As well as the remarkable achievements of the first team in the Blue Square Premier League, the City reserve team are quietly achieving a season which has the potential to be record breaking. They play in the Suburban League, a league [.

The Premier League, the Football League and the growing financial gap

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As Richard Scudamore and The Premier League continue their campaign for a money spinning 39th fixture abroad, members of England's Football League go about their daily lives, more concerned with the salient issue of survival. In the same month the Premiership big boys drooled over the prospects of earning an additional £5m a season for [.

Chelsea 1-2 Tottenham - 2007/2008 Carling Cup Final

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Tottenham come back from a goal down to win in extra time against Chelsea in a gripping Carling Cup Final. Match report to follow. Chelsea 1-2 Tottenham - Carling Cup Final - Goal Videos Preview Chelsea take on Tottenham in the 2007/2008 Carling Cup Final at Wembley on Sunday to round off a solid week for both [.

Is Wes Brown as valuable as Patrice Evra to Manchester United?

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Alex Ferguson has blasted Wes Brown's agent for poisoning his client's mind. The club have reportedly offered 40k / week while the agent has Brown holding out for a bigger contract. Ferguson has stated that United will not budge from their offer and that Brown needs to respect his ties to the club and [.

Champions League Video Roundup: Arsenal 0-0 AC Milan, Lyon 1-1 Manchester United, Celtic 2-3 Barcelona, Fenerbahce 3-2 Sevilla

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'Tis a little late, but here are the highlights from Wednesday night's Champions League ties, in case you missed any of the action. And if you did, well, you missed some exciting moments, great finishes, and near misses, which is where we'll kick off the highlights. Arsenal 0-0 AC Milan Of [...

UEFA Cup Roundup: Everton romps into last 16, Bolton and Tottenham sneak through, Rangers leave it late, and Aberdeen crash out.

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It was a great night, for the most part, for British sides in the UEFA Cup on Thursday night, as four of the five British participants still in the competition advanced to the round of 16. Bolton was hanging on to a slim advantage after claiming a 1-0 victory over Atletico Madrid at [...]

The Soccerlens Daily - Under-performing England, Chelsea’s sugardaddy, Arsenal’s new sugardaddy, Tottenham for cup win and more

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Friday, 22 February, 2008. A very good morning to you, dear Soccerlens readers. Got an email this morning from Hugo telling me that he was emailing a few organisations to see if he could find some slaves for us. Or something to that effect. I'm pleased, of course, but a bit concerned Hugo - are [...

Arsenal and AC Milan cancel each other out at the Emirates

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It was billed as the clash between young and old, the grand masters of European football versus the new pretenders. But after 90 exhausting yet goalless minutes at the Emirates, we are still no nearer to knowing just who will be taking their place in the last eight. AC Milan will be the happier side with [.

Paul Gascoigne detained under Mental Health Act, receiving medical treatment

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Paul Gascoigne has been detained under the Mental Health Act following an incident at a hotel in Newcastle. Northumbria Police said a 40-year-old man was detained following an incident of disorderly behaviour at the Malmaison Hotel early on Wednesday. Officers later visited Mr Gascoigne at Gateshead's Hilton Hotel after concerns were raised about his behaviour.

The Great Championship Title Race: Stoke, Watford, West Brom, Bristol, Charlton and Ipswich all in with a chance

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As we approach the business end of the season the race for success is really starting to hot up with a whole host of clubs all in with a shout of glory! It's just a shame I am talking about the Championship as opposed to what has been labelled ‘the greatest league in the world', the [...]

Trouble at Anfield for Inter, Super Roma Reversal, and AC Milan Clean Sheet at Emirates: Three Tales of Serie A in the UEFA Champions League

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With the competition now reaching its vital playoff stage, things didn't debut in quite the same way for the three Italian teams still in European contention. Inter Milan, Roma, and AC Milan shared the three thirds that make a whole in football: a loss, a win, and a draw. Marco Pantanella takes a look at [.

WagSnatch Roundup: Gay Footballers, Rooney makes millions, Beckham’s start turn and more

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In this week's WagSnatch Roundup, the mythical creature that is a gay footballer exists, Coleen and Wayne snap a Ł2.5 million deal, Rooney's family banned from celebrations, Beckham on a diet, Victoria has some dedicated fans, Beckhams have another performer in the family, Defoe back with Charlotte, while Danielle Lloyd insures her booty to [.

A Vital Step For Football Equality?

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Over a decade ago now when Venus and Serena Williams were at their true dominant peak, the rest of the women's tennis circuit had no answer to their power and athleticism, and tournament after tournament, they slowly dismantled all competition. Then at 1998's Australian Open, in a show of pretty brazen arrogance, both sisters [.

The Soccerlens Daily: Manchester United wanted James Bond, Liverpool training ground vandalised, Chelsea in tapping-up claim, Celtic invest in youth and more

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In today's roundup, we solve the following mysteries: was James Bond any good at football, why Liverpool fans are wasting their time, whose responsibility is it to stop the tapping-up of young players, and which club in Manchester is more popular? Manchester United wanted James Bond A hat-tip to Steve Amoia for pointing me to this [.

Champions League Video Roundup: Liverpool 2-0 Inter, Roma 2-1 Real Madrid, Olympiakos 0-0 Chelsea, Schalke 1-0 Porto (not ready)

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The Champions League finally got back underway on Tuesday night, with the round of 16 kicking off with the first four first-leg ties. Here are the highlights (and lowlights) of last night's action. Olympiakos 0-0 Chelsea Unfortunately, there are no goals to report from this one. Olympiakos deserve a lot of credit for not [.

Mike Ashley and Newcastle United under attack

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When Mike Ashley took over Newcastle United, we heard a lot about how he was a true fan, how he would put his own money into the club to bring in the right players and make Newcastle great again, how he was the Messiah (what's with Newcastle and Messiahs anyway?). You didn't hear much about [...]

Chelsea boss Avram Grant receives late Christmas present

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What does it say about the police when they sell their stories to the press? On Tuesday, 19th February at around 12:15pm, Surrey Police were called to Chelsea's training ground at Cobham after the staff received a package that contained, according to the police, anti-Semitic insults (did it call him a dirty Jew?

What Lies Ahead for Kosovo?

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This is the first in a series of articles I'll be writing on national teams from recently internationally recognized nations or non-recognized nations, like Montenegro and Kosovo or Abkhazia and Northern Cyprus. I'm sure all of you have heard of the unilateral declaration of independence by the breakaway Serbian province of Kosovo.

Inter have it all to do as Liverpool finally find their killer touch

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If you'd believed all you'd read in the past couple of days, it wasn't worth Liverpool showing up to face Internazionale tonight, after all, having seen their Premiership challenge fail to last the winter (again), and then their FA Cup ambitions go up in smoke at the hands of Barnsley at the weekend, a game [.

FA to ban swearing? - #### off!

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You may not have heard of the Arngrove Northern League second division but it is to become a very important League for the future of football in England. The league, which is based in the North-East of England and features such teams as Esh Winning and Norton and Stockton Ancients, is being used from next season [.

It’s Beckham’s World: We All Just Live In It

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Instead of churning out another David Beckham soccer academy, Goldenballs has decided to go bigger and better with the creation of David Beckham's World of Sport, set to be complete by 2010. The location this time is in Brazil and the setting is luxury resort Cabo São Roque, located 20 miles north of Natal, the [.

Liverpool overwhelm Inter with tactics, aggression and simulation

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Liverpool 2, Inter Milan 0. Before kick-off, that scoreline would been considered unlikely - but as hoped by Liverpool fans, Rafa's men rose to their next European challenge and produced as good a display as could be hoped for (considering the buildup) to beat 10-man Inter Milan 2-0. The scoreline hardly tells the whole story though.

Beeb’s Boob: Bayern v Aberdeen or Panathinaikos v Rangers?

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BBC Scotland unimpressed with their recent decision regarding the broadcast of this week's UEFA Cup matches. As some will know, Rangers take on Panathinaikos in Greece on Thursday and Bayern Munich play Aberdeen at the Allianz Arena in Germany that same day. But unfortunately for non-travelling fans, both matches are contested at roughly the same time.

Interview with Mr. Ian Blanchard, Head of National Referee Development for the Football Association

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Images courtesy of Ian Blanchard and the English Football Association. Soccerlens is extremely pleased and honored to welcome Mr. Ian Blanchard. He has a very important and integral role at the FA. Sometimes as players, coaches, writers, and supporters, we do not appreciate the rigors, training, and qualities necessary to referee a game at an elite [.

Arsenal and Liverpool’s Champions League Situation, Or: Waiting for the Milan Teams…

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If one looks as this week-end's results, the double header pitting Serie A vs. EPL teams in the UEFA Champions League's First knock-out round this week, really doesn't bid well for Arsenal and Liverpool. Indeed, the two Prem teams have suffered shock defeats in the FA Cup this Saturday, and one has to wonder [.

07/08 FA Cup Quarter Final Draw - Manchester United and Chelsea for the final?

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We're down to the last four games of the FA Cup and with smart money on Manchester United or Chelsea to win the Cup. While a United-Chelsea final still possible after they were drawn apart in the quarter-finals, fans would be hoping to avoid a repeat of last season's tactical deadlock that was decided [.

A lesson in class, or why Everton, Manchester City, Aston Villa and Portsmouth can’t pip Liverpool to 4th place

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It's not been a good 10 days for the Premier League, for Richard Scudamore or for their grand plan to take the league to the world. Flak has come in from all comers, from the media hacks working for the reactionary red-tops, all the way up to the top of the tree, where Sepp Blatter [...]

Paolo Maldini, Il Capitano, 1000 Games for AC Milan and Italy

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Image courtesy of Eddie Marles and AC Milan. Last Saturday night in Parma (0 x 0), the legendary AC Milan captain, Paolo Maldini, celebrated his 1000th appearance for club and country. He came on as a 70th minute substitute for Marek Jankulovski. "I hope my legacy will be one of absolute respect for the sport and opposition.

Serie A Week-End ‘Big Match’: Juventus Beat Roma in Turin, Pull Closer to Second Spot

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Fly, little bird, fly.. high in the Serie A sky. That little bird my friends, is Inter Milan, who thanks to the defeat of Roma at the hands of Juventus, now have an 11-point lead on their 2nd-ranked Giallorossi rivals. In other words, chalk up another Scudetto for the Nerazzurri... what remains is the [.

La Liga Week 24: Barcelona cut Real Madrid’s lead to five points

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Football Club Barcelona's win at Zaragoza has pulled them back to within five points of Real Madrid who lost for the third time this season in Andalucia. This time it was Real Betis who beat the champions 2-1 after an early goal from Royston Drenthe had given Madrid the lead. Madrid have now lost on [.

A massive three points for Barcelona

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A vital win for Barcelona in Zaragoza kept La Liga alive for the Catalans, following Real Madrid's shock defeat at Real Betis earlier in the day. But it wasn't the kind of victory that Frank Rijkaard would cherish. On their part, Barca did produce some of their trademark passing moves and slick one-touch creativity in [.

Football Videos Roundup - Manchester United 4 - Arsenal 0, Liverpool 1 - Barnsley 2, Chelsea 3 - Huddersfield 1, and more

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In today's video roundup we look at this weekend's FA Cup action. Sheffield Utd 0 - Middlesbrough This match up brought no goals and little excitement. Sheffield Utd 0 - Middlesbrough Manchester United 4 - Arsenal 0 Manchester brought it to Arsenal with 4 - 0 victory. Wayne Rooney scored first and his goal was followed by Fletcher's [.

I’m an Arsenal player, get me out of here!

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Rather than structure this week's review chronologically, as is the custom, I would like first to invite you readers to participate in the interactive part of our service by voting for which Arsenal player will be ejected from the pitch if/when the Gunners suffer humiliation at the hands of AC Milan this week.

Liverpool Need A Miracle

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Just when Liverpool fans thought things couldn't get any worse the side with the worst away record in the Championship arrived at Anfield in the fifth round of the FA Cup. With Liverpool sitting fifth in the Premier League, three points behind their city rivals Everton, and with a particularly tough draw in the Champions [.

Liverpool View: Both Rafa AND the Americans need to GO

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Enough is enough. i just can not take any more mediocrity. That last defeat to Barnsley was embarrassing. Credit to Barnsley as they were amazing but the squad is simply under performing and Rafa only seems to be able to motivate them for the European games. I've come to accept that Liverpool [...

FA Cup 5th Round: Last-minute luck for Portsmouth

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See, I knew I shouldn't have said anything about consecutive replay-less rounds. There were only two FA Cup fifth-round ties to be played on Sunday, and one of them just had to go to a replay. Sunday's ties offered up the opportunity for two struggling Championship sides to get a big boost at the [.

The Rise of Mark Stimson

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Although in many ways unspectacular, much can be learnt about the character of Mark Stimson from his much-travelled playing career. Hailing from Plaistow, East London (strangely a place that holds a fair few memories for this writer), Stimson linked up with Tottenham as a trainee, and signed professional terms at White Hart Lane at the [.

FA Cup Fifth-Round Roundup: Gunners get shot down, Reds left red-faced, and Lamps lights it up for Chelsea.

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So, where to start? Do I lead in with Liverpool's crushing defeat at home, or do I kickoff things with Manchester United's demolition of Arsenal? Well, let's flip the invisible coin, and oh, look at that! Ahmed's covered United's 4-0 thumping of Arsenal and Liverpool's dumping at the hands of Barnsley pretty well, so I'll [.

Interview with John Koskinen, President of the United States Soccer Foundation in Washington, D.C.

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Images courtesy of John Koskinen and the USSF. Please note: The majority of this interview previously appeared in AC Cugini Calcio Connection, and was republished, with a few changes and several more graphical images, due to the kind consent of Mr. Koskinen. Soccerlens is very pleased and honored to welcome Mr.

A Blueprint For Youth Football Training

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Soccerlens is proud to welcome Mark Carter, Director of Ministry of Football, as a guest columnist. How can we help create players who can invent the future of the game? (for coaches of under 12 year old players) There is little doubt that skill levels among top football players have evolved over the past 30 [.

Fat Tottenham, Lazy Liverpool and Sloppy Arsenal - Saturday Review

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What is with the press and Tottenham's "weight problem"? I think it's a convenient target for those confused between their desire to see Tottenham break into the Big 3 and the results they see on the pitch. No doubt that Tottenham have a talented bunch of young footballers, but is it really that big a [.

Cantona…Cantona…Cantona!!! Eric Cantona Scores For Manchester United!

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Came across this video link of a Cantona goal from 96, amazing, amazing stuff from Le God. I'd like to think that one of the current crop of stars - Rooney, Ronaldo, Anderson - have that sort of confidence on the pitch but despite their explosive talents none of them have that authority or the [...]

Manchester United wipe Old Trafford turf with Arsenal - without Ronaldo

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Manchester United overwhelmed (and that's understating it) Arsenal at Old Trafford with a thumping 4-0 win in the 5th round of the FA Cup. It was a comprehensive win with Manchester United clearly dominating from start to finish. The game brought back memories of Fulham and Roma from last season, and had Rooney put [.

FA Cup, Serie A, Ligue 1 - Three Classic Matches for this Football Week-End

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Weeks during which we can find simultaneous quality fixtures are rare in any sport, but it would be fair to say that this year, the month of February has been spoiling football fans worldwide. We had Barcelona-Sevilla, Chelsea-Liverpool, and Cameroon-Egypt last week-end, it is now time for a fresh batch of footy awesomeness this [.

FA Cup, Serie A, Ligue 1 - Three Classic Matches for this Football Week-End

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Weeks during which we can find simultaneous quality fixtures are rare in any sport, but it would be fair to say that this year, the month of February has been spoiling foobtall fans worldwide. We had Barcelona-Sevilla, Chelsea-Liverpool, and Cameroon-Egypt last week-end, it is now time for a fresh batch of footy awesomeness this [.

Should The English Premier League Bring Back Football Terraces?

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Everton's victory in the Carling Cup at West Ham in December was memorable for me for a variety of reasons, the way the player's performed, the magnitude of the actual victory and the actions of the Everton faithful throughout. For the whole game, the Evertonian end stood, this was reflected through the electric atmosphere.

UEFA Cup Round of 32 First Leg Roundup: Everton, Tottenham, Bolton with one foot in the door, Rangers and Aberdeen with work to do

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Things are looking good for the English clubs in the UEFA Cup after Everton, Tottenham, and Bolton each won the first legs of their round of 32 ties. Everton, who was one of only two sides to complete the group stage with maximum points, kept up their winning ways by defeating Norwegian side [...]

Aberdeen 2-2 Bayern Munich - the Dons stand tall

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Nine goals conceded in two games, only two scored. Numerous injuries, confidence low, and a visit from Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich. Sounds like the sort of thing nightmares are made of. But Jimmy Calderwood and his Aberdeen side almost made it a dream come true with a fantastic performance against the tournament favourites in the [.

Arsenal Want To Sign Fab’s Kids

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Cesc Fabregas is a wanted kid (as in Wenger's kids, you know, I thought that was the proper term?) - Real Madrid have beaten themselves black and blue over him and given up, Barcelona continue to be linked (although the Spanish press will play that Catalan card until global warming sinks the Iberian peninsula, [.

The Chelsea and Drogba Show

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It used to be the Jose Mourinho and Chelsea show, but a Roman intervention saw an end to 3 years of that, and now it's pretty much a free for all, although to be honest Chelsea's low profile this season (in the press) has been a blessing for us non-Chelsea fans and I imagine [...]

07/08 FA Cup 5th Round Predictions: Arsenal and Manchester United to draw, Liverpool, Chelsea, Portsmouth and Middlesbrough to win

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I absolutely despise Valentines Day. Conformity demands that I waste good money on a pointless gift and a meaningless card, even though the wife has spent the last 364 days of the year criticising me for being lazy. I'd happily dump her; but it's a lot of effort to find someone new. Paul McCartney [.

Lorrie Fair - Web Chat Transcript After Chelsea Move

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In case you didn't catch the USA Womens football star Lorrie Fair conducting a webchat on Tuesday, following her high profile move to Chelsea in England, here is a transcript of the event. LORRIE FAIR WEB CHAT - February 12, 2008 http://theblues.chelseafc.com/america/home.shtml (19:09:45) Steve: Hi Lorrie.

Liverpool FC v DIC-Backed AFC Liverpool: Who Will Win The Premier League First?

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From Pitch Invasion: Like Manchester United and Wimbledon fans before them with FC United of Manchester and AFC Wimbledon, Liverpool supporters aim to start their own grassroots supporter-run club, AFC Liverpool, in non-League football. They have a website too, and Tom Dunmore from PI has talked to the man behind the venture, so you should definitely [.

The Joys Of Being A Football Dad

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Let's get one thing clear straight away. If you are the dad of a promising young footballer, then you are a nobody! The clubs will not speak to you. Your son doesn't care what you think. If you tell him he had a great game, but the coach has told them they were disappointed at [...]

Ronaldo Injured 9-12 Months, Draw and Heartbreak for Rossoneri (Milan 1-1 Livorno, Serie A Matchday 16)

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Bad luck just seems to never end for Ronaldo. The first reports, released by SkySports just after the game, seem to suggest the Brazilian striker's left knee suffered a crack in the rotulean tendon, something which at the age of 31, may put Ronaldo's career seriously at risk (Gazzetta is talking about 9-12 months [.

SPL Mid-Season Review - Rangers lead Celtic, as predicted

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Back at the end of August last year I previewed the season ahead in Scotland, including my predictions for each league based on the first couple games of the season. Naturally, I haven't gotten everything 100%, but as part of a mid-season update and part of a review of my future-telling abilities, here's how the [.

WagSnatch Roundup: Ashley Cole in limbo, Cristiano Ronaldo gets fined and the David Beckham effect

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In today's edition of WagSnatch Roundup the Cole soap opera continues, read all about the Beckham effect, the most expensive text in the world, Jamelia wants a pre-nup thank you very much and slideshow of the football's sexiest WAGs. Cole soap opera continues Although Cheryl Cole was quite adamant she will stick by [.

Southgate v Woodgate, Middlesbrough v Tottenham - Who Has More Ambition?

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When Jonathan Woodgate recently departed Middlesbrough for Tottenham in an £8million deal he could not help himself in having a pop, not only at his former boss Gareth Southgate, but the ambition of his hometown club. The England international central defender enjoyed a fantastic first season back in the Premier League when Boro brought him back [.

Giovanni Trapattoni - The Republic of Ireland Opens the Trap Door

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Image courtesy of the FAI. Giovanni Trapattoni, who will be 69 years of age in March, was named on 13 February 2008 as the new manager of the Republic of Ireland National Team by Mr. Don Givens, Chairman of the Selection Panel of the FAI. Mr. Trapattoni signed a two year deal, and will begin his [...

Predict The Future With BetUKnow

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BetUKnow is a Soccerlens advertiser. BetUknow is a totally free fantasy prediction game, with over 1000 British Pounds in real monthly prizes from Amazon UK. BetUknow is the place where football bettors join to share their knowledge of the Premiership and other continental competitions, such as the Champions League.

Against It: Why Premier League matches should not be played abroad

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The English Premier League continued its quest for world domination lately with the announcement of plans to play a 39th round of matches away from home, with the US, Asia and Australia being mooted as possible locations for games to be played as the richest league in the world looks to fatten its bank account.

Premier League To Play On Mars

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Hugo Steckelmacher returns with a somewhat late review for last week - excuses range from the fatigue from writing encyclopedia entries for Dave Penny and Tony Mowbray to waiting to watch Arsenal play at home on Monday night. Arsenal! A Spurs man! England less than ab fab as Capello takes charge All eyes were on [.

Tanked-Up Underwater Imaging of Dahab, Egpyt: Diving and Interactive Football Maps

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Images courtesy of Martin Little and Tanked Up Underwater Imaging. A few months ago, I was searching the Web for a site that listed football web sites by countries. Lo and behold was my surprise and pleasure to find a veritable treasure from the Red Sea. Tanked Up Underwater Imaging of Dahab, Egypt (in the South Sinai), [.

Tony Mowbray - Destined For Greatness?

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In Hugo Steckelmacher's second of his profiles on great English managing prospects in the Football League, he looks at the playing and managerial career of Middlesbrough great Tony Mowbray. When I sat down to think about how to write about Tony Mowbray, I realized that I couldn't have picked a better week for the conception [.

Zheng Zhi Ad for 2008 Beijing Olympics

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Zheng Zhi, midfielder, Chinese captain and a Charlton player, talks about China's failed qualification bid in 1999 and how they are out to reclaim Chinese dignity on the football pitch come the 08 Olympics. Find more videos like this on AdGabber from - AdRants

Richard Dunne is the star of the Manchester City show

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When Sven-Goran Eriksson reflected on Manchester City's surprise derby win at Old Trafford yesterday, he could have been forgiven for concentrating only on the goalscorers who had ensured the club's first league double over their near neighbours since 1970, and their first win in enemy territory since Denis Law's backheel and United's relegation in 1974.

La Liga Week 23: Real Madrid’s Magnificent Seven

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Barcelona have been missing Samuel Eto'o. While the Cameroon striker has been scoring aplenty in Ghana, his teammates have only managed to find the net five times in seven games. This weekend Real Madrid also found themselves without their main striker as Ruud Van Nistlerooy was injured; in response Guti, Raul and company turned in [.

07/08 Champions League 2nd Round Preview

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Champions League football returns with 16 teams aiming for progress in Europe in the coming weeks (2nd Round fixtures will be played on 19/20 Feb and 4/5 Mar). Players will have to be careful in how much they flail their elbows, protest decisions and rush to the defense of their teammates as Uefa has given [.

Arsenal v AC Milan - 07/08 Champions League 2nd Round Preview

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The Champions League will restart next week and one of the more tantalizing second round ties has got to be Italian giants AC Milan against English powerhouse Arsenal. It is the kind of match up we like to see - the young dogs up against the old guard. Energy and youthful exuberance against experience and class.

Roma v Real Madrid - 07/08 Champions League 2nd Round Preview

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On the 19th of February, the Champions League pits against each other two of the most emblematic teams in European football, in the shape of Roma and Real Madrid. Connecting the Giallorossi and the Blancos Although there is little tradition linking these two clubs, some current personnel will have experienced the ins and outs of both [.

Celtic v Barcelona - 07/08 Champions League 2nd Round Preview

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A lot of people may feel that this is one of the more one-sided of the last-sixteen ties in this season's Champions League but statistics suggest that Celtic could well cause an upset. Celtic fear no-one at Celtic Park and Barça have only beaten Celtic once in three meetings at Camp Nou, and that was [.

Sevilla v Fenerbahce - 07/08 Champions League 2nd Round Preview

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This has been a season of many ups and downs for Sevilla. Coming off of a second straight UEFA Cup triumph and a 3rd place finish in La Liga last season, expectations had to be high in Seville coming into this season. And, things started brightly enough, as Sevilla won the first [...]

Porto v Schalke 04 - 07/08 Champions League 2nd Round Preview

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Four years ago, FC Porto won their second European Cup title by defeating Monaco 3-0 in Gelsenkirchen, Germany, where 'The Special One' cemented his place as one of Europe's top managers. Next week, a much, much different Porto side will return to the sight of the club's 2004 triumph, as they take on the stadium's [.

Manchester United v Lyon - 07/08 Champions League 2nd Round Preview

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Since Manchester United's unforgettable, treble-clinching Champions League triumph over Bayern Munich in 1999, Sir Alex Ferguson has added several more memories - and trophies - in a tenure at the club that has now surpassed the two-decade mark. But, the one thing that has eluded Fergie since that night in Barcelona is another [.

Chelsea v Olympiakos - 07/08 Champions League 2nd Round Preview

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New manager, same result. In September, Chelsea parted ways with Jose Mourinho, who had guided the club to two semifinal appearances and another appearance in the Champions League round of 16 in three seasons, after Claudio Ranieri led the Blues to a place in the semifinals in 2003/04, the season before Mourinho's arrival.

Liverpool v Inter Milan - Champions League 2nd Round Preview

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The last few seasons have seen Inter Milan take a strangehold over the rest of Italian football, as the Nerazzurri have won back to back Scudettos in the last two seasons, along with back to back Coppa Italia trophies in 2004-05 and 2005-06. This season has been no different, as Inter appear to be well [.

Central Coast Mariners: January 08 Review

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Game of the Month: Central Coast 2-0 Wellington Phoenix The match which finally decided the final A-League standings ended in success after a confident performance from Mariners. Player of the Month: Adam Kwasnik Two goals in four games ensured the midfielder returned to the starting line up. Goal of the Month: Adam Kwasnik V Newcastle Jets Outstanding finish from the [.

Lorrie Fair - From US to Chelsea To Help Women’s Football

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Lorrie Fair has 123 caps for the full USA women's national team. She is a 29 year-old midfielder, who at the age of 20 was the youngest member of the USA World cup winning team in 1999. On 1st February this year Lorrie signed as a player for Chelsea in the English women's Premier League, becoming [..

Cameroon 0-1 Egypt - Pharaoh Apothesis: Egypt Triumph at the African Cup of Nations

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When the 2008 African Cup of Nations began on January 20, few would have put any serious amount of money on Egypt as tournament winners. Despite entering the competition as title holders, the Pharaohs were ranked 6th in the outright betting charts (odds 14/1), far behind big-name favorites such as Ghana (3/1), Ivory Coast [.

Dissecting Opposition And Making The 39th Round Work

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Since news about Premier League's proposal to play an extra round of matches from January 2011 leaked (a good thing - it's better to start this debate early and give people (players, club management and fans) time to get used to the idea), the world of English Premier League football has gone to hell.

Chelsea 0 Liverpool 0 Football 0

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They say familiarity breeds contempt, well Liverpool & Chelsea are familiar enough with one another to harbour a rather hefty level of contempt these days. And football fans are familiar enough with this fixture to greet its arrival with a groan of dismay rather than a sense of anticipation. This meeting was the eighteenth since [.

Football Videos Roundup: Manchester United 1-2 Manchester City, Aston Villa 4-1 Newcastle United, Derby 0-3 Tottenham, Everton 1-0 Reading, Bolton 0-1 Portsmout

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In today's football videos roundup we look a some of today's and yesterday's Premier League matches. Feb 10, 2008 Manchester United 1 - Manchester City 2 Darius Vassell scored the first goal and put Manchester City in the lead. Benjani doubled up and made it 2 - 0. United scored only one late in the match through [.

Andre Bikey Attacks Medic And Misses ACN 08 Final - Was He Provoked Or Is He An Idiot?

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We often read of football-related violence that occurs in the stands/terraces, between players, against referees, and out on the streets between rival hard-core factions. But here was an another unfortunate incident. Against a medical assistant who was assisting an injured player from Cameroon, Rigobert Song.

Manchester United 1-2 Manchester City - Well Done City, Where Were You United?

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I could have sworn that I'd seen this happen before with United - big occasion, history, time and location supporting us, and then everything just went tits up as players refused to play according to script. First up, credit to Manchester City, to the fans for their respect of the one-minute silence, to Sven Goran [.

Legalizing Prostitution for World Cup 2010

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Much has been made about the strength of South Africa's infrastructure to host a successful World Cup. To that end, South Africa is considering beefing up their capabilities in providing the best World Cup possible by legalizing prostitution. It was South African police commissioner Jackie Selebi who first proposed the idea, arguing that if prostitution is [.

EuroBall - Play and Win Tickets to Euro 2008

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Being that I spend much of my day at the computer, it's nice to have something to distract me from an article every now and then. Not that I needed anything more to play to my slacker tendencies, but thanks to JVC (and Ahmed, who put it up on the site, in case you [...]

The Great Premier League Takeover

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Derby County's inevitable relegation from the Premiership this May should be eased by the fact the Rams will start next season as one of the richest clubs in the Championship. The Pride Park outfit have been bought by an American consortium, led by Andy Appleby who runs the Detroit based General Sports and Entertainment for [.

Aston Villa v Newcastle United, 9th February 2008, Live Blog

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30' Both teams determined to give the ball to the other. Villa fans getting a little restless. 29' Beautiful sunny day. Newcastle fans are enjoying themselves. 27' Duff cleverly back heels to Carr on the overlap. Carr back heels less cleverly to put it out for a goal kick. 26' Scuffed volley by Gareth Barry just about makes [.

Aston Villa .v. Newcastle United, 9th February 2008, English Premier League, Live Blog

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Match details Aston Villa .v. Newcastle United Saturday 9th February 2008 Villa Park English Premier League Kick off – 12.45 (UK time) Preview Aston Villa go into this match sitting in 6th place in the Premiership table just 3 points behind Everton in the final Champions League qualification place.

Why Manchester United Are The Best Club In The World

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If you're a Manchester United fan, you need no convincing (although the following water-tight argument (and this one) is yours to beat your friends over their heads). If you hate Manchester United, well, screw you (what? you're not going to change your mind...). But most of all, like yesterday's piece on Arsenal, this one is [.

10 Reasons Why Barcelona Should Have Signed Diego Milito and not Thierry Henry

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I was going to write a type of homage to Diego Milito during the transfer window as I anticipated that a move to a bigger club was imminent for the Zaragoza striker. Milito was heavily linked with Tottenham and Manchester City (who, strangely in my opinion, opted for Benjani) during the January sales.

“Under the Radar”: The Top 5 Up-and-Coming English Managers in the Football League

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In numerous other articles published on this site, I have sought to debunk the myth that English football is not producing enough young talent. Previously, I have primarily focused on playing talent – with the notable exception of my study on Chris Coleman (who is Welsh and not English, anyway) – for which reason I have [.

Dave Penney - Profile - Darlington Manager

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In the first of his series on young English managers in the Football League, Hugo Steckelmacher seeks to demonstrate that Dave Penney is indeed worth top dollar. "One of my co-workers said that cricket lovers were naturally anally retentive. I told him to shut up and to never use my tea mug for coffee [.

Nike’s Mercurial Vapor IV - Who Is The Fastest?

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Nike's Mercurial Vapor IV shoes are supposed to be one of the lightest pairs of football boots ever made - but do they really help players run faster? Last month, Cristiano Ronaldo recorded his first Premier League hat-trick against Newcastle, scoring all three goals in the span of 40 minutes in Manchester United's six-goal second [.

The Rich Get Richer

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The news that the English Premier League is planning to go global has dominated the front and back pages of the English newspapers today. Hidden away, in some of the papers, you can find a small piece about the fact that League One side, Bournemouth, are going to announce today that they have had to [.

Weekend Predictions: Chelsea to beat Liverpool, Manchester United to beat Manchester City, Tottenham, Arsenal, West Ham and Everton to win

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I am no stranger to a lazy stereotype. I'm half-Irish and I'm married to a Scot, so some people believe we stay at home all day smoking crack and peeling potatoes; which is only half true. It could be worse though, I could be bald. Britney Spears was considered a wholesome entertainer when she [...

Real Women Don’t Date Arsenal Fans

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On Red Rants, someone pointed to this thread on Red Cafe poking fun at Arsenal's on-field celebrations, and I have to say, if you eliminate the cheap shots and the abusive jokes, there are a few real gems in there. So, please go have a look, and see if you can come up with [...]

Idomitable Lions of Cameroon Defeat Ghana and Crush the Hopes of an Entire Nation (African Cup Semi-Finals)

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Cameroon is the first finalist of the 2008 African Cup of nations. Burdened by pressure, injuries, and suspensions, the Black Stars of Ghana didn't manage to pull yet another miracle in front of their own crowd, and will be forced to compete for the lowest step of the podium on Saturday. It took the [.

A Lesson in Efficiency by the Egyptian Pharaohs: Ivory Coast Dominate but Concede Four (African Cup Semi-Finals)

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In trying to find an answer to the eternal question "what makes a sports competition memorable?", many have cited 'beautiful plays', 'the enthusiasm of the fans', and 'spectacular goals'. What makes a competition truly complete however, is that sometimes, against all odds, the underdog can defeat the favorite and create a surprise.

2008 African Cup of Nations Semifinals: Hosts fall short, Champions close in on repeat

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After 30 matches, the 2008 African Cup of Nations final is set, and two of Africa's premier footballing powers will square off on Sunday for the title. Hosts Ghana won't be one of them, as their dream of lifting the cup in front of their home fans was dashed by Cameroon. There [...]

Football Videos Roundup - England 2 - Switzerland 1, Italy 3 - Portugal 1, Spain 1 - France 0, and more

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In today's video roundup we look at yesterday's friendlies. England 2 - Switzerland 1 England scored the first of the match right before the half. Jemaine Jenas' goal was answered with Swizterland's equalizer from Eren Derdiyok. Shaun Wright-Phillips later scored the winning goal for England. England 2 - Switzerland 1 Italy 3 - Portugal 1 Luca Toni scored the first [.

Premier League Clubs Consider Playing Matches Overseas

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Do you support this move or are you against it? Make your voice heard in our poll at the end of this article. The English Premier League clubs are considering a proposal to play some matches at overseas venues starting from the 2011/2012 season. The idea is to extend the regular season to 39 games, [.

Press Review - England v Switzerland

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Capello is starting to understand why his job pays so well. The crowd did not seem happy and kept asking for Beckham's return while select tabloids are making a big deal out of his selection. Surely every journalist out there knows more than Capello about how to manage a football team... anyhow, here is what [.

WAGSnatch Roundup: Ronaldo on £140k / week, Anelka and Rooney pull, and England’s crappiest fans

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In today's WAGSnatch Roundup - times are changing for the England squad with a new WAG ban imposed, Ronaldo becomes the highest paid footballer in the Premier League, Chelsea's Anelka is the latest footballer exposed for his cheating ways while Rooney's little brother has an unusual pulling technique.

2008 African Cup of Nations Semifinal Preview: Cameroon looking to crush Ghana’s hopes, Ivory Coast out for revenge.

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We're down to the final four in the 2008 African Cup of Nations, and there aren't any real surprises as to who the last four standing are. Ghana's got one more hurdle to climb to get to the final, but it's a pretty big one, as they have to go up against a [...]

Italy 3-1 Portugal: the Azzurri Take Their International Friendlies Seriously

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Results, goals, and fine spectacle in Switzerland! At the Letzigrund Stadium of Zurich, the field which will host (among others) the Italy matches vs. Romania and France this summer, Roberto Donadoni's team took Portugal out for a little joyride on Wednesday night. Only, the evening didn't quite turn out the same way for each [.

England 2-1 Switzerland - Should We Hold The Taxi?

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England 2 (40′ Jermaine Jenas, 62′ Shaun Wright-Phillips) Switzerland 1 (58′ Eren Derdiyok) As tempting as it would be to lay it into Fabio Capello (alternatively, we could all renounce international football like some club football fans - you know who you are), this was Capello's first game, and just as England under McClaren could not afford to celebrate after beating [.

Football Videos Roundup - Australia 3 - Qatar 0, Japan 4 -Thailand 1, England U21 3- Republic of Ireland U21 0, and more.

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In today's video roundup we look at two of today's World Cup Qualifiers. Yesterday's U21 Euro Qualifiers and Friendly is also covered. World Cup Qualifiers: Australia 3 - Qatar 0 Josh started off Australia's victory with a header. Tim Cahill scored with another header and Mark Bresciano sealed the victory with his finish.

England 08/10 Away Kit Launch - Rio, Owen and Bentley talk about Capello and the future

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As you might know, the England 08/10 Away Kit was launched this week (more details here). And most of you (England fans anyway) would have heard Rio Ferdinand's soundbite about the new England environment being like 'going from primary to secondary school'. Well, here you go - non-exclusive (because it's bound to pop up somewhere else) [.

David Bentley: A Ready-Made Replacement for David Beckham

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So Capello named his squad last week, and as usual all the attention was centred on one man. Not the likes of Curtis Davies or Gabriel Agbonlahor, who received their maiden England call ups (but surely not their last). Not even the likes of Ashley Young or Jermaine Jenas, who are two of the in-form [.

Get Well Soon Chris (EPL Talk)

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I haven't known Chris (The Gaffer - EPL Talk) for a long time but whenever we've talked, he seems like an intelligent and friendly person. I'm proud to call him a friend and was distressed to hear that he's in the hospital. Michael's post doesn't tell us how serious it is (although if you're admitted [.

England v Switzerland Preview: Capello’s Brave New World

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61 year-old Italian managerial legend Fabio Capello begins his reign as England manager for real tonight when his charges take on Switzerland in a friendly at Wembley. At this stage he seems to have the media, the players and the fans all behind him. Long may it continue. I have criticised Capello's decision to leave out [.

On Munich 1958, Manchester United and England

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Image courtesy of ManUtd.com. Today is an emotional day for Manchester United fans - and as a United fan myself, I share the feelings and the sense of loss. You only have to read (not even hear, just read) about Sir Bobby Charlton talking about Duncan Edwards to realise what Manchester United and England lost [.

Interview with Eddie Marles, North and Latin America Managing Director for AC Milan

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Images courtesy of AC Milan Junior Camps. Progetto Giovani means "Youth Program." Soccerlens is very pleased to welcome Mr. Eddie Marles, who is the North and Latin America Managing Director for AC Milan. Milan began their North American Youth Program initiative in Baltimore, Maryland, with one youth camp in 1999.

The Best Football Podcast - Soccerlens 2007 Awards

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We've selected six candidate podcasts for "The Best Football Podcast" award from 2007. The podcast with the most number of votes by February 17, 2007 wins the 2007 Readers' Choice award. A Judges' Choice award will also be awarded at the same time. Visit these sites to help you make your decision: EPL Talk Arsecast World Soccer Daily The [.

The Best Blog Design - Soccerlens 2007 Awards

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We have selected six candidate blogs for "The Best Blog Design" award from 2007. The blog with the most number of votes by February 17, 2007 wins the 2007 Readers' Choice award. A Judges' Choice award will also be awarded at the same time. Visit these sites to help you make your decision: Blue Champions The Offside The [.

The Best Blog Community - Soccerlens 2007 Awards

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We've selected six candidate blogs for "The Best Blog Community" award from 2007. The blog with the most number of votes by February 17, 2007 wins the 2007 Readers' Choice award. A Judges' Choice award will also be awarded at the same time. Visit these sites to help you make your decision: NUFC Blog Arseblog The Offside Caught Offside AVFC [.

The Best La Liga Blog - Soccerlens 2007 Awards

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We've selected six candidate blogs for "The Best La Liga Blog" award from 2007. The blog with the most number of votes by February 17, 2007 wins the 2007 Readers' Choice award. A Judges' Choice award will also be awarded at the same time. Visit these sites to help you make your decision: FC Barcelona News La [.

The Best Mainstream Media Blog - Soccerlens 2007 Awards

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We've selected six candidate blogs for "The Best Mainstream Media Football Blog" award from 2007. The blog with the most number of votes by February 17, 2007 wins the 2007 Readers' Choice award. A Judges' Choice award will also be awarded at the same time. Visit these sites to help you make your decision: Soccer Insider Reuters [.

The Best Blogger - Soccerlens 2007 Awards

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We've selected six candidate blogs for "The Best Blogger" award from 2007. The blogger with the most number of votes by February 17, 2007 wins the 2007 Readers' Choice award. A Judges' Choice award will also be awarded at the same time. Visit these sites to help you make your decision: Chris - Roma - The [.

The Best Women’s Football Blog - Soccerlens 2007 Awards

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We've selected five candidate blogs for "The Best Women's Football Blog" award from 2007. The blog with the most number of votes by February 17, 2007 wins the 2007 Readers' Choice award. A Judges' Choice award will also be awarded at the same time. Visit these sites to help you make your decision: Soccer Chica Kickster Womens' Soccer [.

The Best Overall Blog - Soccerlens 2007 Awards

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We've selected six candidate blogs for "The Best Overall Blog" award from 2007. The blog with the most number of votes by February 17, 2007 wins the 2007 Readers' Choice award. A Judges' Choice award will also be awarded at the same time. Visit these sites to help you make your decision: The Offside Who Ate All [.

The Best New Blog - Soccerlens 2007 Awards

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We've selected six candidate blogs for "The Best New Blog" award from 2007. The blog with the most number of votes by February 17, 2007 wins the 2007 Readers' Choice award. A Judges' Choice award will also be awarded at the same time. Visit these sites to help you make your decision: NUFC Blog The Spoiler Bayern Lounge My [.

Soccerlens 2007 Awards Winners

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The Soccerlens Awards recognize excellence in football blogging. With help from our readers and editors, Soccerlens chose 14 awards categories (we're definitely going to increase categories for next year as the football blogosphere expands) and nominated six candidates per category. After 13 days of fierce voting (Readers' Choice) and ongoing behind-the-scenes deliberation (Editors' Choice) we've [.

FIFA 08 vs Winning Eleven 2008 - The Definitive Verdict

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For the last few years, football gamers who wanted an authentic football experience on their consoles had only one name to turn to, and that was Winning Eleven. There was hardly any debate in the matter. Winning Eleven have been widely regarded by critics and gamers alike to be the superior of the two.

France v Spain and Italy v Portugal headline a week of intriguing international football

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Whilst the whole world and his mother are hypothesizing about Don Fabio and his crew, I thought it might be a good idea to look at some of the other fixtures in what looks like a (dare I say it) appetising week of international friendly football, with fifteen of the sixteen Euro 2008 qualifiers in [.

Weekend’s Talking Points: Arsenal, Tottenham, Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea, Portsmouth, Blackburn, Reading, Everton, Manchester City, Aston Villa, Ne

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So the see-saw that is the Premier League lead has swung back the way of Arsenal again after they became the first side this season to leave the City of Manchester Stadium with three league points, whilst their North London neighbours Tottenham apologized for humiliating them in the Carling Cup last month by halting the [.

2008 African Cup of Nations Quarterfinals: Egypt edges Angola, Cameroon squeaks by Tunisia in a thriller

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After Ghana and the Ivory Coast advanced to the semifinals with wins on Sunday, the other two spots were up for grabs on Monday, as Group C winner and reigning African Cup of Nations champion Egypt took on Group D runner-up Angola, and Group D winner Tunisia took on Group C runner-up Cameroon. Egypt [.

Why Liverpool’s Steven Gerrard Should Not Be England Captain

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27 year-old Liverpool captain and midfield player Steven Gerrard is widely tipped to be the captain of Fabio Capello's new England team. He is regarded as an automatic choice for the national side and as one of the World's best players. Does Gerrard justify the hype? Steven Gerrard made his debut for Liverpool in 1998 and has [.

Football Videos Roundup - Newcastle 1-1 Middlesbrough, Fulham 2-1 Aston Villa, Juventus 1-1 Cagliari, Siena 3-0 Roma and more

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In today's video roundup we look at Sunday's matches from the Premier League, the Serie A, La Liga and more. Premier League: Newcastle 1 - Middlesbrough 1 Michael Owen put Newcastle in the lead with a nice header. Middlesbrough's Robert Huth answered back by equalizing with his header. Newcastle 1 - Middlesbrough 1 Fullham 2 - Aston Villa [.

La Liga week 22: Almeria put the brakes on Real Madrid

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Real Madrid were set back by their first league defeat since the start of November, losing 2-0 at Almeria on Saturday evening. After a run of eight straight victories this loss proves the Madrid players are human and breathes new life into the race for the title. Barcelona almost missed their chance to reduce differences [.

10-Men Black Stars of Ghana Defeat Nigerian Super Eagles (African Cup of Nations Quarter-Finals)

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It was a very tough battle, between two countries whose rivalry extends far beyond the football field, but in the end Ghana were the first semi-finalists of the 2008 African Cup of Nations, and deservedly so. The Black Stars went through a plethora of emotions throughout tonight's game: they stepped onto the field with half [.

Can Roy Hodgson keep Fulham in the Premier League?

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Fulham managed to win their first game in three months yesterday when they beat Aston Villa 2-1 at Craven Cottage. This was the team's first victory under Roy Hodgson who joined them on 30th December last year. Roy Hodgson is one of the most experienced coaches in World football, but can he keep Fulham in the [.

2008 African Cup of Nations: Ivory Coast 5-0 Guinea (Videos)

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Sunday wasn't a good day to be Kemoko Camara. Well, to be more exact, a 20-minute period on Sunday wasn't a good time to be anyone in Guinea's defense, including goalkeeper Camara, as that's when the Ivory Coast broke down a resilient Guinea side with four goals in the final 20 minutes to pick [...

Week in Review: Arsenal overtake Manchester United as Tottenham splash cash, again

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The top stories this week - Arsenal overtaking Manchester United at the top of the Premier League, the end of the january transfer window (questionable signings coupled with last-day shenanigans), Capello's first England squad and life in the Championship. Deal or no deal? Whilst transfer deadline day generally passed in a haze of tiresome tedium – thankfully [.

Arsenal’s Flamini & Adebayor - Two more for Wenger’s success list

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Arsene Wenger is a man not afraid to make bold decisions. Selling Nicolas Anelka to Real Madrid in 1999 after the young Frenchman had looked set to become an Arsenal legend was bold. But he replaced him with Thierry Henry, and his decision was vindicated. Selling club captain Patrick Vieira in 2005 was bold.

Football Videos Roundup - Manchester City 1-3 Arsenal, Tottenham 1-1 Manchester United, Liverpool 3-0 Sunderland and Portsmouth 1-1 Chelsea

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A look at the goals from some of the top games in the Premier League on Saturday - we've picked Manchester City v Arsenal, Tottenham v Manchester United, Liverpool v Sunderland and Portsmouth v Chelsea. Manchester City 1 - Arsenal 3 An entertaining match that saw Manchester City lose their home record and Arsenal go 2 [.

2008 African Cup of Nations Quarterfinals Preview

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While millions of millions of people will be watching the NFL's Super Bowl today, the Super Bowl of African soccer has reached the quarterfinals, and as expected, host Ghana is alive, kicking, and ready to get their hands on the trophy. But, there are seven other sides still in it, looking to pave their [.

Stuart Pearce will be good for Capello and England

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Written by Nigel Winterburn for 4sportsake.com - original article here. The new England set-up is there for all to see now, and I for one am very pleased that Fabio Capello has brought in Stuart Pearce as his coach. I go way back with Stuart, having competed against him many times as rival left backs, and [.

Capello’s England

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England's finest - allowing for injuries and lack of fitness - assemble this afternoon at the team hotel at Watford as they start preparations for their 6th Feb friendly against Switzerland. Capello's first game - except that this isn't Capello's England yet. The core is pretty much the same as what Eriksson took to Germany [.

The Future Today: England’s Lineup in 2018

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Fabio Capello revealed his first provisional England squad on Thursday (and the 23-man final squad last night), but given the current public apathy towards the national side, it was hardly an announcement that had been waited on with baited breath. The Three Lions' failure to qualify for Euro 2008 before Christmas compounded a decade, which [.

Interview with Arrigo Sacchi - former AC Milan and Italy manager

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Soccerlens is excited to welcome former Italy and AC Milan manager Mr. Arrigo Sacchi to our column. Mr. Sacchi managed several clubs - most notably Milan - and Italy, with notable success (he led Italy to the 1994 World Cup final) as his Milan team won league and European titles. He had no prior footballing [.

Interview with Franco Baresi - AC Milan U-19 coach

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Soccerlens is extremely honored to welcome one of the best defenders ever to play the game to our column: AC Milan and Italy legend Mr. Franco Baresi. Mr. Baresi enjoyed a distinguished and enviable career at Milan, winning 6 Serie A titles and 3 European Cups. He also featured for the Italian national team in [.

Arsenal ends Manchester City’s unbeaten home run to go top of the table

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How well Arsenal has been helped by Togo's inability to qualify for the African Cup of Nations currently being held at Ghana. Already devoid of Kolo Toure, Emmanuel Eboue and Alex Song, Emmanuel Adebayor's participation in the African Championships for Togo could have been a telling loss for Arsene Wenger in his pursuit of the [.

Manchester United’s Cristiano Ronaldo - best player ever seen in England?

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Manchester United winger Cristiano Ronaldo is currently taking the Premier League and the football world by storm. The free kick with which he scored his 19th goal of the season on Wednesday against Portsmouth has been hailed by many as the best ever seen. So is Ronaldo the best player ever to play in the Premier [.

Top 5 Goals from January 2008

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What were the the best 5 goals scored in football last month? Inspired by this post on the best 5 freekicks ever in the Premiership, I asked the folks at ifutbal.com to put together a short compilation of the top goals from January 2008, and the result is the video below. Here are the top 5 [...]

The Andy Webster case and the end of G-14

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Worldwide football's governing body, Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), seems to be losing its grip on the people and organizations that it purports to govern, footballers and their clubs. One event has the organization and its head, FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter, fuming and another is being cheerfully touted as leading the game [.

Weekend Predictions: Arsenal to beat Manchester City, Liverpool and Chelsea to draw and Manchester United to beat Tottenham

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Call me old-fashioned, but i believe that fidelity remains the cornerstone of a successful relationship. I would never cheat on my wife, unless the opportunity arose. I have serious doubts over my wife's respect for monogamy. The word on the street is that Ashley Cole was physically sick while performing the horizontal 64-second jig, [.

The Liverpool jigsaw is no closer to completion

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"This is our year..." That's a common claim made by Liverpool fans such as myself. Every time a new pre-season rolls around, thousands of optimistic Scousers decide that their side has finally managed to assemble a squad that can challenge at the top of the Premier League, that they have the right blend of defensive strength, [.

Top 5 Free-Kicks in Premier League History

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Manchester United returned to the Premiership summit midweek with a comfortable 2 – 0 victory over Harry Redknapp's Pompey side. Whilst many would argue that United could have gone on to score six or seven, such was their dominance and quality of play, I'm sure the Old Trafford faithful would have settled for two and [.

Serie A Winter Transfers Update - The Entire “Calciomercato” of January 2008

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"Messieurs, rien ne va plus"! Scouts/negotiatiors/investors/sporting directors/club presidents have been working their ass off this past month, jumping from table to table in their endless quest for a last-minute star buy, in the traditional carousel that brings players, agents, and club owners all together in a merry-go-round dance.

English fans care a damn about Maradona’s apology for ‘Hand of God’ goal

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Argentinian great Diego Maradona has apologised to English fans for his infamous 'Hand of God' goal during the 1986 World Cup quarter-finals. In an interview to the The Sun newspaper, the football legend was quoted as saying: If I could apologise and go back and change history I would. But many doubt the need for such [.

Can the FA teach young footballers “Respect” for Referees?

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The British media's coverage, or lack thereof, of Brian Barwick's "Respect" programme, gives me great cause for complaint. This oversight is all too typical of a nation that likes nothing better than to kvetch, to stick the needle into its institutions: in this case, the FA, whose each and every error is delighted in, dissected [.

Managerial musings: Arsenal’s English bias, Mourinho set for Barcelona, Bilic or Blanc for Liverpool?

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Congratulations to Matthew Upson and David Bentley on their deserved call-ups to Fabio Capello's England squad. It cannot have been easy to rebuild their confidence after having their dreams of making it at Arsenal crushed by a perceived anti-English bias from the manager. Arsene Wenger denies that any such preference for foreign talent exists of [.

Top 5 Free-Kicks in Premier League History

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Manchester United returned to the Premiership summit midweek with a comfortable 2 – 0 victory over Harry Redknapp's Pompey side. Whilst many would argue that United could have gone on to score six or seven, such was their dominance and quality of play, I'm sure the Old Trafford faithful would have settled for two and [.

Transfer Roundup: Manchester City, Portsmouth, Middlesbrough, Manchester United, Liverpool, Tottenham, Everton, Newcastle, Wigan, Bolton, Derby, Fulham, Celtic,

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There was, as expected, plenty of deadline-day craziness, and while there are several deals to report, I'll start by talking about the deal that didn't happen, and one that did, at the same time. With Manchester City coming in for Benjani, Portsmouth went about looking for a replacement, and found one in Tottenham's Jermain [.