SoccerLens Archives for January 2011

Mario Balotelli: Where’s the fun?

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Mario Balotelli: Where's the fun? - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

I'm sure your mum said, like mine, that a joke's only funny when everyone's laughing. In forgetting Mum's golden rule, Mario Balotelli has drawn heat from his manager Roberto Mancini and teammate Nigel de Jong. His attempted back-heel goal from close range against MLS side Los Angeles Galaxy earned him an 31st minute substitution and worldwide internet headlines which arrive less than a week after Emirati international Theyab Awana successfully backheeled a penalty in a friendly match against Lebanon.

The Best of 2011/2012 Premier League Fixtures: Part Two

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The Best of 2011/2012 Premier League Fixtures: Part Two - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Last week we analysed the first half the 2011/2012 Premier League fixtures list, looking at the key clashes through August to December.

Here we look at the second half of the season and try to pick where the best action is likely to be.

Warner And Hammam: Guilty As Charged?

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Warner And Hammam: Guilty As Charged? - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

The BBC has obtained a document authored by the Carribean Football Union (CFU) detailing claims that Jack Warner had full knowledge of and participated in the distribution of cash bribes to members of the CFU at a special meeting promoting Mohamed Bin Hammam's Fifa presidential bid.

Manchester United striker ahead of Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal stars in selling football replica kits

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Manchester United striker ahead of Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal stars in selling football replica kits - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Wayne Rooney was king of the replica kit last season. The Manchester United striker's surname was the most popular for the back of Premier League replica shirts.

Stat Attack: Chelsea Target Romelu Lukaku Is Unstoppable

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Stat Attack: Chelsea Target Romelu Lukaku Is Unstoppable - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

With the press still debating whether Drogba and Torres are good enough to lead the line for Chelsea (together or individually) and Nicolas Anelka douses the club's efforts to move him on by saying that he will see out his contract at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea are also planning to secure their future by bringing in Anderlecht's Romelu Lukaku.

Stat Attack: The Real Value Of Sergio Aguero

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Stat Attack: The Real Value Of Sergio Aguero - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Sergio Aguero has been a long-term target for both Manchester City and Real Madrid for the past few months, ever since the Argentine announced his intentions to leave Atletico Madrid back in May. Manchester City see him as an ideal replacement for Carlos Tevez, and someone who is much less of a problem off the pitch.

Can Chelsea and Arsenal close the gap to Manchester?

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Can Chelsea and Arsenal close the gap to Manchester? - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Last season saw domestic dominance return to the north of England, with Manchester's top clubs claiming the two biggest pieces of domestic silverware. With just over a month left in the transfer window, it's time to see whether the London pair of Chelsea and Arsenal have closed the North-South Divide.

LEAKED: Chelsea 2011/12 third shirt is a disappointment

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LEAKED: Chelsea 2011/12 third shirt is a disappointment - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

adidas has never been shy of giving Chelsea the worst change shirts in recent years.

Usually the clubs are given away shirts from the adidas template but this one is definitely different.

Quite simply, this leaked shirt seems like a photo of a retro shirt from the 60′s.

Kill, Marry or Shag: The Liverpool Midfield

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Kill, Marry or Shag: The Liverpool Midfield - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Have you every played the game "Kill, marry or shag"? In it, one player gives his or her opponent three names it works best with celebrities. Made famous in the TV show "30 Rock", the "player" then has to hypothetically kill one, shag one and marry one.

AC Milan 2011/12 Third Kit

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AC Milan 2011/12 Third Kit - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

AC Milan and adidas have revealed their 2011/2012 third shirt.

We have already shown you the Milan away shirt for next season and how well that has turned out.

The third shirt is going to be black with red adidas pin-stripes on the shoulders, black collar and a green, white and red stripe on the chest.

AC Milan 2011/2012 Away Shirt

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AC Milan 2011/2012 Away Shirt - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

AC Milan have revealed their 2011/12 away kit and the adidas manufactured shirt is exactly the same as the leaked images.

The design is simple. White shirt with a white collar and a red and a black stripe going down behind the crest.

FC Porto 2011/12 Kits

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FC Porto 2011/12 Kits - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Hulk, Joao Moutinho, Rolando, James Rodríguez and Helton helped their club reveal their 2011/2012 kits at The Yeatman Hotel in Vila Nova de Gaia, Portugal.

The Nike manufactured kits are all made from recycled plastic bottles.

Manchester United 2011/2012 Away Shirt is Chelsea’s Home Shirt

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Manchester United 2011/2012 Away Shirt is Chelsea's Home Shirt - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Apparently, both Arsenal and Manchester United are going to wear blue away shirts next season. Although the shirts are very different but they are both manufactured by Nike.

This horizontally striped shirt is blue, dark blue and black.

Bolton Wanderers 2011/12 Kits

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Bolton Wanderers 2011/12 Kits - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Reebok and Bolton have recently released very futuristic-looking shirts and this one tops them all off.

The trotters will wear white, red and blue home strip and a black and yellow away strip.

Bolton 11/12 Home Kit

The home shirt is white with blue patches around the neck, shoulders and lower back.

The Best of 2011/2012 Premier League Fixtures: Part One

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The Best of 2011/2012 Premier League Fixtures: Part One - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Watch the best of the 2011/2012 Premier League season with Sky Sports HD.

The 2011/2012 Premier League season kicks off with a bang a Manchester derby in the FA Community Shield as the curtain raiser for a fast start to the season that sees Arsenal host Liverpool and United host Tottenham and Arsenal and all of this just in August.

A-League: It’s all about Harry Kewell

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A-League: It's all about Harry Kewell - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Harry Kewell.

A show-pony. A drama queen. The best football player to come out of Australia.

Just the mention of his name prompts the football fan to offer their opinions. It's impossible not to, given his remarkably high-profile successes and failures.

Tottenham’s Summer of Destiny Continues.

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Tottenham's Summer of Destiny Continues. - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

In less than a week Tottenham's season has been turned on its head, as yet another high profile player disregards a piece of paper called a contract.

With no European or International tournaments to have distracted him, it seems clear that Luka Modric did not spend the summer studying law, if he had he would have realised that he is bound to Tottenham for the foreseeable future and without a La Liga style minimum fee clause in his contract, Spurs do not have to sell.

Everton 2011/12 Home Kits

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Everton 2011/12 Home Kits - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Everton have unveiled their 2011/2012 kits. The Everton away shirt was already revealed in May and now the blue home shirt and the camouflaged home goalkeeper kits.

Outfield

The main difference in 11/12 season's home shirt is the return of the collar adding a vintage look.

Everton 2011/12 Home Kits

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Everton 2011/12 Home Kits - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Everton have unveiled their 2011/2012 kits. The Everton away shirt was already revealed in May and now the blue home shirt and the camouflaged home goalkeeper kits.

Outfield

The main difference in 11/12 season's home shirt is the return of the collar adding a vintage look.

An Apology for Carlos Tevez

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An Apology for Carlos Tevez - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

An apologetic ... for Carlos Tevez? Just days after a scathing open letter? The same guy writing both? I guess stranger things have happened remember Julian Faubert once played for Real Madrid.

Less than a week ago, I suggested Carlos Tevez finally "end his Manchester hell" and return once and for all to South America, the Copa Libertadores and probably a smaller pay packet.

An Apology for Carlos Tevez

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An Apology for Carlos Tevez - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

An apologetic ... for Carlos Tevez? Just days after a scathing open letter? The same guy writing both? I guess stranger things have happened remember Julian Faubert once played for Real Madrid.

Less than a week ago, I suggested Carlos Tevez finally "end his Manchester hell" and return once and for all to South America, the Copa Libertadores and probably a smaller pay packet.

Inter Milan 2011/2012 Shirts

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Inter Milan 2011/2012 Shirts - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Inter Milan have revealed their 2011/12 home kits. The home shirt leaks suggested the correct design of the shirt but the revealed shirt has thinner stripes.

Inter's five-year treblesome reign as the champions of Serie A came to end last season as their local rivals AC Milan took a six-point lead over them.

Juventus 2011/2012 Kits

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Juventus 2011/2012 Kits - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Even though our home leaked shirt for Juventus were quite off but the away shirt leak was spot on as Juventus reveal their Nike manufactured 2011/2012 kits.

After a disappointing 10th place finish last season, Antonio Conte has been given charge at the club as the manager.

Britain’s most succesful football cities

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Britain's most succesful football cities - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Football has always thrown up rivalries, mostly between two or more side's that inhabit a city. Liverpool and Everton, Manchester United and City, Glasgow Rangers and Celtic all are at loggerheads with each other and are constantly looking for bragging rights in their individual battles.

Sam Allardyce Is Right To Denounce Margaret Thatcher – For The Wrong Reason

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Sam Allardyce Is Right To Denounce Margaret Thatcher For The Wrong Reason - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Football managers have a knack for esoteric statements. Often, the profundity of these comments is completely unintentional; nevertheless, if we're willing to trawl through hours upon hours of press conference banality, often we'll end up with a hidden gem.

Robbie Fowler: International striker, property mogul, Thai football league hero

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Robbie Fowler: International striker, property mogul, Thai football league hero - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

The name Robbie Fowler will never be forgotten by Liverpool fans, who cherish memories of the striker netting countless goals for the Anfield side. The Kop worshipped the ground the crafty marksman walked on, and the now 36-year-old attacker has had a glorious career playing on Merseyside, for Leeds, Manchester City and 26 times for England.

Revolutions, radical change and a sense of foreboding: why French imports come with a warning label for Newcastle United fans

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Revolutions, radical change and a sense of foreboding: why French imports come with a warning label for Newcastle United fans - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

In the Age of Enlightenment, a European nation overcame financial crises and numerous regime changes to briefly flourish on the big stage for a few years.

Tottenham Need Players to Match their Aspirations

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Tottenham Need Players to Match their Aspirations - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Another week draws to a close at White Hart Lane with Luka Modric still very much a Spurs player. The Daily Mail may claim that there was a tantrum and showdown talks, but the message from Daniel Levy is very clear, there will be no sale.

Football Links: Barcelona’s anti-football, Manchester United’s first title-winning manager and more

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Football Links: Barcelona's anti-football, Manchester United's first title-winning manager and more - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Essential weekend reading while you mull over the insanity of a 400m naming rights deal:

The science of pre-season training courtesy of Premier League club Wolves.

Scoring Stats – The true value of Ronaldo and Messi

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Scoring Stats The true value of Ronaldo and Messi - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Any statistical analysis of a sporting event can go down one of two main routes. Firstly, they could be raw data, usually expressed as totals or percentages. In football, examples include the number of total corners a team concedes (or forces), the number of minutes a player is on the park for over the course of a season or even how many points a team accumulates.

Zidane becomes director of football at Real Madrid

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Zidane becomes director of football at Real Madrid - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Real Madrid and France legend Zinedine Zidane has revealed that he will become the new director of football at the Santiago Bernabeu next season. The former player has been working closely with Madrid president Florentino Perez as a special advisor, creating a link between the first team and the management at Los Blancos.

Modric v Nasri v Sneijder – who should Man Utd, Man City and Chelsea buy?

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Modric v Nasri v Sneijder who should Man Utd, Man City and Chelsea buy? - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

The hunt is on for creative midfielders this summer as managers across England look for the perfect solution to unlocking packed defences. With Paul Scholes retiring, Frank Lampard ageing and Carlos Tevez agitating for a move, Manchester United, Chelsea and Manchester City are all looking for a player to shoulder attacking responsibility on the pitch and 'deliver magic'.

Gervinho – another bit-part failure in waiting for Arsenal?

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Gervinho another bit-part failure in waiting for Arsenal? - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Gervinho was instrumental for Lille in their Ligue 1 title campaign last season, but does he fit the bill for Arsenal?

The Arsenal-bound, Ivory Coast striker has the all-round game and technical ability that Arsène Wenger fancies but how do his recent performances show up in a lower-level league compared to the Premier League, and will he rise to the stage that Arsenal will provide for him or crumble in the winter when the pressure is on?

An Open Letter to Carlos Tevez

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An Open Letter to Carlos Tevez - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Dear Carlos Tevez,

For five years now you've been a shedload of trouble for the entire English Premier League. With this letter, I'd like to invite you to please stop moaning about the loneliness of Northern England and return to Argentina as you have for so long suggested you'd prefer.

Manchester City And The Dubious Pleasures Of Gael Clichy

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Manchester City And The Dubious Pleasures Of Gael Clichy - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

So to be a top team you need attacking fullbacks. This is not just general opinion but to a degree in the modern game it is quite literally a must have. In a time of wingers who cut inside and trequartistas who have far greater mobility,fullbacks provide the width for these players to operate.

New Inter coach Gasperini looks for improvement next season

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New Inter coach Gasperini looks for improvement next season - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

New Inter coach Gian Piero Gasperini was introduced to the world's media for the first time and claimed he knows his side will improve on their second placed finish last season. Gasperini was flanked at the press conference by technical director Marco Branca and vice managing director Stefano Filucchi and the former Genoa manager is desperate to impress.

A Darkness Closes In On Arsenal

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A Darkness Closes In On Arsenal - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Being a Liverpool Forum Obsessive I've read plenty of transfer gossip this season, most of which I won't bore you with since it consists largely of hysteria about only having signed one player, albeit, a fairly big one. What I will tell you about is the general atmosphere, and it's the same as many other clubs which find themselves well endowed with finance.

Nike T90 Seitiro: Official 2011/2012 football for Premier League, La Liga and Serie A

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Nike T90 Seitiro: Official 2011/2012 football for Premier League, La Liga and Serie A - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

The new Nike T90 Seitiro footballs will be used in Europe's top three football leagues English Premier League, Spanish La Liga and Serie A for the upcoming 2011/2012 season.

2011/12 footballs: Nike Seitiro

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2011/12 footballs: Nike Seitiro - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

The new Nike footballs to be used in the English Premier League, the Spanish La Liga and the Italian Serie A for 2011/2012 season have been unveiled.

The ball is given the name 'Seitiro'. It looks like the most modern and "firey" design Nike is given to football.

Match fixing investigation threatens to rock Turkish football

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Match fixing investigation threatens to rock Turkish football - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

60 people have been detained as part of a major investigation into alleged fixing within Turkish football. The chairman of current champions Fenerbahce is part of those under arrest by the authorities in the Eastern European country.

Roberto Mancini looking to his homeland for transfer targets.

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Roberto Mancini looking to his homeland for transfer targets. - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Manchester City coach Roberto Mancini has identified a host of Serie A targets that he will be interested in buying this summer. The Italian is concocting a transfer wishlist to City owner Sheikh Mansour, which contains players from the length and breadth of Italy's top flight.

Villas Boas- What can we expect?

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Villas Boas- What can we expect? - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Yet another season gone by, and the post-season review brings back moments from the seasons long gone. Arsenal, living up to their tag of chokers, relinquishing yet another strong position in the league inspite of showing flashes of absolute ingenuity, Chelsea losing steam in the December period, (not because of the Cup of African Nations though) and then firing their manager for avoidable and trivial errors and then the Big 4 similar to the 2009-2010 season, were given a real run for their money by hugely improved sides like Tottenham and Manchester City.

Tottenham’s Transfer Window Tactics Coming to Fruition

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Tottenham's Transfer Window Tactics Coming to Fruition - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Despite a worrying start to the transfer window, it seems Daniel Levy and Harry Redknapp may well have ridden out the storm and face a late summer full of optimism.

When the calendar page turned to June, the news from White Hart Lane, was more to do with who was going than who was coming.

Effects of the Financial Fair Play Regulations

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Effects of the Financial Fair Play Regulations - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

On the 27th of May 2010, UEFA announced the approval of the Financial Fair Play(FFP) regulations. Â The aim of these regulations is to make the football clubs self sufficient. With the advent of these sanctions, every football club has to break even i.

Why Argentina Will Get Nowhere Trying To Copy Barcelona

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Why Argentina Will Get Nowhere Trying To Copy Barcelona - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

So to get the most obvious fact out of the way first, Argentina should beat Bolivia. They should hammer them off the pitch. Messi should be dancing around the bloodstain pitch at full time with the still beating heart of Arias, the Bolivian goalkeeper, in his hand.