Opinion

media

Did The January 2011 Transfer Window Break Football Forever?

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With the news today that 12,500 people have signed Sky Sports' online petition to make transfer deadline day a national holiday (*sigh*),Greg Evans examines the very moment it all went horribly wrong for everybody...

"HONK honk honk honk HONK HONK honk HONK!!!"

Since the dawn of time, the fine sport of football has always enjoyed a good transfer.

‘We Can’t Stand The Stench Any Longer’ – Long-Running Man Utd Fanzine Red Issue Folds After Finally Surrendering To The ‘Bullshit’ Of Modern Football

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By Chris Wright

Red Issue, issue one

Today is a sad day or, more specifically, yesterday was a sad day with the news that one of football's longest-running fanzines ceased operations after 26 years at the coal face.

Alas, Sunday's issueof long-running Manchester United fanzine "Red Issue" (issue 259) was and is to be the last, with magazine co-founder 'Zar' citing the tiresome "bullshit" of modern football as the main reason behind his decision to call it a day.

Chelsea

Essien, Hoddle, Mikel and Chopper Harris have their say on Lampard.

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Frank Lampard could feature at some stage against Chelsea tomorrow at Stamford Bridge and the focus will be all about him. Despite the fact that there is a game to be won, the media and press will focus on the fact that arguably Chelsea's greatest ever player, could return and severely dent our title push.

Di Maria and Falcao REJECTED by Jose Mourinho.

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Jose Mourinho has revealed that he TURNED DOWN the chance to sign Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao this past summer after being contacted by their agent Jorge Mendes. He revealed that Chelsea simply could not afford either of them because of the new FFP ruling.
Falcao in particular was someone who had been linked with Chelsea on a number of occasions but as soon as he virtually sold out to play for the money he did in the French league, his wages were then always going to be a problem.

What's your view on the Makelele, Gerrard and Lampard combo for Chelsea ten years ago?

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Jose Mourinho is making headlines this morning virtually everywhere you look after revealing that he and Chelsea tried everything they could to sign Steven Gerrard back in 2005. Mourinho revealed that he wanted to partner Steven Gerrard alongside Frank Lampard and Claude Makelele and I just wonder how good you think those three could have been together?

Does Mourinho have a point about a "campaign" against Chelsea, or is it more mind games?

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Mourinho: The king of mind games


It has been an eventful few days for Chelsea over the Christmas period. On balance of play against Southampton at St Mary's, Chelsea should have found a winner in the second half.

"I believe in my team, my team-mates, so everything is possible.”

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Most of the talk in the past week has been of an unprecedented quadruple at Chelsea this season. With the manager playing down our chances recently, Nemanja Matic has revealed that it IS a possibility!
Matic who had another storming game last night spoke to the media after the game and was asked whether or not Chelsea could create history this season by winning ALL four competitions we are fighting for.

Petr Cech believes THIS Chelsea team could become the best EVER!

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In the ten years that Petr Cech has been at Chelsea, he has won virtually everything with the club and has achieved so much. Despite this, he believes that THIS Chelsea team now has the potential to be the best ever!

He said:

"This team has the potential and the quality to become one of the best teams in Chelsea's history if it proves it by winning the trophies.

OPINION: Has Jose Mourinho got his game management right?

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Greame Le Saux, the Ex-Chelsea full back and now pundit for US Television has expressed his opinion that he would like to see Chelsea really go for teams rather than shut up shop. I am wondering how you feel about what he has said.

Speaking recently, Le Saux said:

"They've certainly got a huge amount of creativity and, if you look at the freedom the creative players have - whether it's Hazard, Willian, Costa is a fantastic player as well and there are countless others you can name - they are a hugely entertaining team to watch.

LAMPARD: Would he get into THIS Chelsea side now?

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As Frank Lampard scored his sixth goal of the season for Man City this weekend and the winner at Leicester, questions were asked of our decision to let him go. Jose Mourinho has had his say and reaffirms it was the correct decision.

Listen, as with every single one of you Chelsea fans around the world, I love Frank Lampard, respect him as a man and as the greatest Chelsea player of all time (in my eyes).

Ivanovic: Should Chelsea drop the big Serb against the smaller sides?

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Ivanovic has been a regular at Right Back for Chelsea this season
Among Chelsea fans, especially this season, there is a variety of opinions on Branislav Ivanovic and whether he should be starting regularly for Chelsea at Right Back.

ESSIEN SPEAKS!!

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Michael Essien is quoted on the BBC Website speaking of Chelsea, Jose Mourinho in particular and the title race and has revealed that he sees similarities with this team to the team he joined in 2005.

He said of Chelsea and the title race:

"It's not a big surprise they are doing so well.

What do you think of the reaction to Chelsea's first defeat?

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Now that the dust has settled after our first defeat of the season, I was wondering how you all feel about the reaction from all quarters? From Jose Mourinho to the media, do you think it's been blown out of all proportion?

Being honest, I couldn't understand the Boss stating that the ball boys played their part in the defeat but again, that's just my opinion.

Chelsea’s loan system firmly under the spotlight.

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After a summer of streamlining, Chelsea sit top of the Premier League having seemingly balanced both the squad and the books. With Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules freshly implemented, it is now almost mandatory for even the rich clubs to move players on in order to sign new recruits.

The likes of David Luiz and Romelu Lukaku were sold for big money, allowing Chelsea to buy, among others, Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa, both of whom have improved the quality of the squad immeasurably.

Gobsh*te Analysis: Should Raheem Sterling Have Been Booked For Being Elbowed By Ramires?

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By Chris Wright

Probably not, no.

Jose's "dig" at the supporters has got the reaction he WAS looking for!

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Jose Mourinho has stirred up all sorts of comment and opinion piece after his comments aimed at the Chelsea Supporters after Saturday's 2-1 victory over QPR. I want to read your opinions on the fall out since those comments were made.

Let's start at the beginning. Here is Jose making those comments:


So to additional quotes that came from the boss about the atmosphere and the supporters.

Mohamed Salah - Down on confidence and a shadow of that bloke at Basel.

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After his performance against Shrewsbury the other night and subsequent quotes from Jose Mourinho after the game, we are all wondering if Mohamed Salah has a future at Chelsea.

The whole situation in my view for Salah at the moment is that it's very sad and does not seem to working out for him.

Azpilicueta

Azpilicueta: Just how much will we miss "Dave"?

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Although reports state that Cesar Azpilicueta''s muscle strain is not as bad as first feared, the Spanish defender faces a couple of weeks on the sidelines and looks set to miss games against Swansea and Liverpool. I just wonder how much we will come to miss him?

I have no doubt at all of Filipe Luis' quality and I am sure he will step into the side making the transition between the two as seamless as possible; I do believe however that Azpilicueta is a better defender.

AZPILICUETA: "He's as near to perfect as possible!"- Do you agree?

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Cesar Azpilicueta has been praised left, right and centre from various people for his form at Chelsea ever since he made the left back position his own. Now, he's been named as the best Defender in the League!

Speaking a few weeks ago, Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher on SkySports' Monday Night Football, were asked who they each believed to be the best and BOTH stated that followed closely by Gary Cahill, John Terry and Branislav Ivanovic, Azpi was the best:


I am keen to hear your opinion's on their verdict.

English Premier League

ZOUMA; Has he done enough to keep his place against Swansea?

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Kurt Zouma made his first Premier League start against Newcastle on Saturday and played his first full ninety minutes. In a week where he has praised the influence of Gary Cahill and John Terry, I am asking whether or not he should keep his place for Swansea?

It's another busy month coming up for Chelsea with the players featuring in three different competitions.

MATIC: Arguably our best player so far - How will Chelsea cope without him?

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Tomorrow lunchtime, Chelsea face their second trip up north in a week to face Newcastle but are without Nemanja Matic who is suspended. Arguably Chelsea's best player, it will be interesting to see just how Jose Mourinho's men cope with his absence.

An ever present in Mourinho's side, Matic has been a revelation since he made a return to Stamford Bridge.

Jose Mourinho

TRANSFER WINDOW IN JANUARY - DO WE NEED ANYTHING?

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Jose Mourinho was asked about the January transfer window after the victory over Derby County the other evening and stated that there would be no one coming in or leaving. I am asking if you think we do need someone.

We have read and heard a whole host of rumours of players leaving the club such as Petr Cech and Mohamed Salah with others being linked with moves into the club.

COSTA: Do you agree with Mourinho that he is getting a raw deal?

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Diego Costa picked up his SEVENTH yellow card against Hull for "diving" despite not even making an appeal for a free kick. Jose Mourinho believes that the big Spanish striker is being victimised by Referees this season because of his image.

What is your opinions on this? Do you agree with the manager?

Should Chelsea FC Be Worried About Diego Costa?

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Every True Blue boy and girl will tell you that the biggest thing they have on their minds right now is Diego Costaand his performance with the Chelsea squad.
The Spanish striker originally powered through a fantastic performance when he joined the squad at the start of the season with 11 league goals over just 12 outings for the team.

FABREGAS: WHO REPLACES HIM AGAINST HULL??

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Cesc Fabregas is suspended for the visit of Hull at Stamford Bridge this weekend and I am asking YOU the Chelsea fan reading this who YOU think should replace him in our starting eleven.

We have to believe that Jose Mourinho would want to field his strongest team available for the game so expect the likes of Courtois, Ivanovic, Terry, Oscar, Willian and Eden Hazard to all return to the starting eleven from the side that started last night.

DIEGO COSTA: What do you think of his form?

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Jose Mourinho has challenged Diego Costa to improve his condition as soon as possible and in return, he should be able to find his goalscoring touch. Having scored just two goals in the last seven games, I am wondering what you think of Costa's recent form?

We are all aware of the injury problems the Spanish international faced last season that plagued the end to his season.

Major League Soccer

The Klinsmann and MLS Row: Draining a Fountain of Youth?

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Jeff Carlisle at ESPNFC got some juicy nuggets from MLS executives: apparently, many are pretty angry that Jurgen Klinsmann and has staff have nudged MLS academy players to sign for European Clubs instead of MLS teams. At issue is pride, but also money: many MLS academies waive fees for players, and thus cost around $600,000 a year to maintain.

The MLS Live Blackout Black Eye

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Blackouts, don't you hate them? Look at the above image of the MLS Live playoff schedule. Blackouts pepper the screen. I've been trying to figure out the MLS algorithm for them. As a longtime NFL fan, most local games were (and are) blacked out on TV if the stadium failed to sell out for home games.

The Rest

Talk To Pies: Which Specific Player Made You Fall In Love With Football?

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By Chris Wright

The Wolverhampton Wanderers 1992/93 squad, from hell's heart I stab at thee!

While there were kick-aboutson tap over the road on the park, growing up in the pre-Sky Sports-saturated era meant that actually watching proper football on television was a rare thing principally because there wasn't much to go at.

Chelsea's youth stockpiling: Is the clubs academy being used for financial purposes?

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Can Bamford break through into the first team?
In footballs current state, with the likes of Financial Fair Play becoming a huge stumbling block for some of the worlds biggest clubs, the focus of youth squads and academies is coming more into the fore front; especially in the Premier League.

Barack Obama Destroys Hope of US Soccer World Cup Win (Singlehandedly)

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I am such a bleeding heart liberal that I need regular blood transfusions to prevent cardiac arrest. I will defend LBJ's "Model Cities" initiative to the end, and not so secretly took some delight upon hearing of the passing of Ronald Reagan. During the two terms of George W. Bush, I lived in Spain, Portugal, Argentina, the Dominican Republic, and Nicaragua.

Steven Gerrard To Leave Liverpool After 26 Years Of Loyal Service: Does The Word ‘Legend’ Do Him Justice?

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By Chris Wright

As you've no doubt heard, Steven Gerrard has announced that this current season will be his last with Liverpool, the one and only club hehas represented in his 16 years as a professional footballer.

After several months of contract wrangling and discussions about his future role at Anfield, Gerrard went public shortly before close of play last night to confirm that he will no be renewing his deal when it expires this coming summer leaving him free to negotiate pre-contract terms with interested parties as ofnow.

The January transfer window: Send Jim Curtin on loan

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What if you could move staff in the January transfer window? Peter Andrews has an unlikely —but provocative —idea for Jim Curtin.

Alan Pardew On Cusp Of Crystal Palace Switcheroo After Newcastle Agree £2.5m Compensation Package

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By Chris Wright

As the mid-season madness continues apace, it's being reported that Alan Pardew is now within a whisker of upping sticks at Newcastle (ninth in the Premier League) to take over at manager-less Crystal Palace (currently mired in the relegation zone).

Several sources have confirmed that the two clubs are in talks, thoughthe Telegraph are reporting that Palace and Newcastle have nowagreed a £2.

TORRES LEAVES - HIS AND OUR NIGHTMARE IS OFFICIALLY OVER.

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We have woken to news confirmed on the Chelsea Website that Fernando Torres will make his two-year loan to AC Milan and permanent deal on January 5th. It's believed that he will then sign for Atletico Madrid on loan for the remainder of the season.

First and foremost good luck to him.

Champions League: Diego Costa vs David Luiz - Who will come out on top?

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Chelsea's Champions League draw against Paris St Germain puts Diego Costa up against David Luiz and it's a battle I personally cannot wait to see. Who do you think will come out on top over both games?

We have defended Luiz to the hilt while he was here. We supported him and backed him when his defending was compared to "A ten year old controlling him on Play Station!

SCHURRLE: Inconsistent for the most part. He must take his chance tonight!

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Andre Schurrle finds himself out of the side and not in favour for a regular first team start at the moment. Tonight against Sporting Lisbon he is set to be handed another chance and MUST take it with both hands!

Having scored Chelsea's first goal of the season, latching on the arguably the pass of the season from Cesc Fabregas at Burnley, life seemed to be pretty good for Schurrle having just previously returned from playing a pivotal role in winning the World Cup Final for Germany.

10 Things Pies Just Can’t Bloody Stand About Modern Football

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By Chris Wright

Believe it or not, here at Pies we love football,bloodylove it -it's pretty much the only reason we do what we do for the kind of pittance we get for doing it.

While we're not exactly card-carrying members of the Against Modern Football sect, there are certain aspects of the game that boil all four of our humours.

Gobsh*te Analysis: Did Marouane Fellaini Spit On Sergio Aguero During The Manchester Derby?

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By Chris Wright

#458279882 / gettyimages.com

Much has been made of an incident during Sunday's Manchester derby in which United collosus Marouane Fellaini appeared to project saliva onto the back of Sergio Aguero's shirt as the City striker lay curled up in a little foetal ball of angst after being hurted by the nasty men.

Menino Gave Soccer Proper Due

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Photo credit: New England Revolution

Yesterday, I wrote a story about the Revolution's memorable come-from-behind victory over the Metrostars in the 2005 playoffs, a match I dubbed "the greatest Boston game of all time." It was written in part to remember a great moment in the region's sports lore,and alsoa reminderon how thelocal sports media at large often cast soccer to the side.