scapegoat

Arsenal

Friday Kickoff: Ozil, Wenger, Bale and more

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Fallout continues from Arsenal's lopsided midweek loss while Real Madrid are about to see the return of one of the club's biggest stars.

Mesut Ozil's agent says the midfielder is being made the "scapegoat" of Arsenal's Champions League loss. (REPORT)

Arsene Wenger says he will manage next season, whether it be at Arsenal or somewhere else.

Wenger Defends Under-Fire Ozil

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Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has launched an impassioned defence of under-fire midfielder Mesut Ozil, insisting that the German World Cup winner should not be used as a "scapegoat" for Arsenal's 2-0 Champions League defeat away to Borussia Dortmund on Tuesday night.

"Why should he be a scapegoat?

And today’s scapegoat is….

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By Walter Broeckx

Let us go on the search for the scapegoat. The most popular sport amongst the media and the non-existing part of our fans.

The first scapegoat the media presented was Özil. As he cost lots of money he has to score at least one goal per match and give 3 assists. That [.

Why Ramsey should be the first name on the team-sheet this Sunday

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Let me start by reiterating where I stand re Aaron Ramsey, or for that matter, on any young Gunner who wears the shirt with pride and gives their all for the team: I support them unreservedly.

For me, they are not machines from which we can pull the plug if we don't like what we are seeing.

Why Ramsey should be the first name on the team-sheet this Sunday

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Let me start by reiterating where I stand re Aaron Ramsey, or for that matter, on any young Gunner who wears the shirt with pride and gives their all for the team: I support them unreservedly.

For me, they are not machines from which we can pull the plug if we don't like what we are seeing.

Arteta injury means that Ramsey must start against Chelsea

Just Arsenal at related • 2 views
Arsenal star midfielder Mikel Arteta has dealt another immense injury blow to his French manager Arsene Wenger after the many he has received over the course of the season. According to the many reports, Mikel is out for good this season after the Wigan game. With four matches still to go in the Premier League, [.

Kalamity Ken

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I almost fell off my stool at the pub Sunday. No, not what you think (this time), but I was all cocky, telling everyone who'd listen (no one did) that interviews after games are too predictable.

Much as I love the Arsenal, Arsène's not one for entertainment off the pitch. Most of the managers are all clichés and official bashers.

Adventures In The Fantasy Premier League: Gameweek 27

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1. Resurrection-Â Two games, two deficits, two wins. Suddenly Arsenal have fight, suddenly Arsenal have character. With Andrey Arshavin gone, the media must identify a new scapegoat. Thus far, the Gunners have denied them. Rosicky is approaching his...

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Arsenal Fans Build Case Against Arsene

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The numbers simply don't lie: Seven years without a trophy. The worst Arsenal team in ten years. Arsenal appears to be in a state of crisis, but there are yet more questions than answers concerning any resolution. Arsenal fans are demanding to know whether Arsene had access to the fat reserve account, whether he should be the target of blame and villified or else forgiven.

Arsenal Fans Build Case Against Arsene

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The numbers simply don't lie: Seven long years without a trophy. Comments regarding the team's demise have been loaded with vitriol: "The worst Arsenal team in ten years," for instance. Arsenal as a team appears to be in a state of crisis, but there are yet more questions than answers concerning any resolution.

Liverpool v Manchester City 01.25.12

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Liverpool lead 1-0 on aggregate.

2:45pm ET, live in the US on FSC

Last four head-to-head:
1-0 Liverpool (a) 01.11.12
0-3 City (a) 01.03.12
1-1 (h) 11.27.11
3-0 Liverpool (h) 04.11.11

Previous rounds:
Liverpool: 2-1 Chelsea (a); 2-1 Stoke (a); 2-1 Brighton (a); 3-1 Exeter (a)
City: 1-0 Arsenal (a); 5-2 Wolves (a); 2-0 Brum (h)

Last three matches:
Liverpool: 1-3 Bolton (a); 0-0 Stoke (h); 1-0 City (a)
City: 3-2 Tottenham (h); 1-0 Wigan (a); 0-1 Liverpool (h)

Goalscorers (Carling Cup):
Liverpool: Suarez 3; Maxi 2; Bellamy, Carroll, Gerrard, Kelly, Kuyt 1
City: Dzeko 2; Agüero, Balotelli, Johnson, Hargreaves, Nasri 1

Referee: Phil Dowd

Guess at a line-up:
Reina
Johnson Skrtel Agger Enrique
Gerrard Spearing
Downing Henderson Bellamy
Kuyt

What exactly did Dalglish mean by "If that's the level they [the players] expect this football club to play at, they won't be here long"?

Revenge of the Squid

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Something rather remarkable happened on Tuesday night. Did you spot it?

No, I don't mean the FFB (Fat French Benchwarmer) peeing his sky blue pants (size XL) at the very sight of Emmanuel Frimpong.

Nor do I mean two rookie Arsenal midfielders with the amusing acronym of "CoqPong" completely dominating the expensively acquired internationals in the Abu Dhabi City line-up.

Revenge of the Squid

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Something rather remarkable happened on Tuesday night. Did you spot it?

No, I don't mean the FFB (Fat French Benchwarmer) peeing his sky blue pants (size XL) at the very sight of Emmanuel Frimpong.

Nor do I mean two rookie Arsenal midfielders with the amusing acronym of "CoqPong" completely dominating the expensively acquired internationals in the Abu Dhabi City line-up.

West Brom

Liverpool v Hearts 08.30.12

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Liverpool lead 1-0 on aggregate

3:05pm ET, live in the US on FSC

Previous rounds:
Liverpool: 3-0 Gomel (h), 1-0 Gomel (a)
Hearts: n/a

Last three matches:
Liverpool: 2-2 City (h); 1-0 Hearts (a); 0-3 West Brom (a)
Hearts: 0-0 Aberdeen (a); 0-1 Liverpool (h); 2-2 Inverness CT (h)

Goalscorers (Europa League):
Liverpool: Borini, Downing, Gerrard, Johnson 1
Hearts: n/a

Referee: Vladislav Bezborodov (RUS)

Guess at a line-up
Reina
Kelly Coates Carragher Enrique
Henderson Adam
Downing Shelvey Cole
Suarez

Like last week, expect certain key players to be left out with Arsenal due at Anfield on Sunday.

Painting the Woodwork

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As many have noted since yesterday, Downing's two strikes against the woodwork bring Liverpool's league total to 33 for the season, a seemingly egregiously large number. Rubbing salt in the wounds, after the 0-1 loss to West Brom, Opta Joe noted that Liverpool would be fourth in the league if all the shots which hit the frame were goals.

The Sun welcomes England’s new manager by mocking his speech impediment

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West Brom manager Roy Hodgson has been given a four-year contract to take charge of the England team and serve as primary scapegoat/punching bag and The Sun ensured that the job began right away.

"I would hope if I was offered the England job," Hodgson told The Sun two days ago, "it would be with the backing of the important people — the fans and media.

With Alan Shearer Under Their Tree, Blackburn Fans Should Be Careful What They Wish For This Christmas

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By Chris Wright

I know I'm probably in the overwhelming minority but, for what it's worth, I quite like Steve Kean. There, I said it.

It's not that I believe he's a perfectly competent coach being made a scapegoat and it's not that I really have any faith in his managerial fortitude what-so-ever.

New England Revolution

What Would You Give Up For Juan Toja? [Poll]

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With MLSSoccer.com reporting that the New England Revolution are planning on taking Juan Toja with their first pick in the current allocation order and that they are entertaining offers for the services of the Colombian play-maker, there has been talk around the Internet that the Timbers should make a play of their own.

Five Things We Learned: Revolution vs. Dynamo

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It was like the first seven seconds of that Revolution TV spot.

Black and white scenes of frustrated players. Mistakes. Distorted audio. General malaise.

Although the Revolution followed the philosophy Jay Heaps drove him in the second part of that spot "We're going to attack" they fell into their 2011 form when Luiz Camargo equalized in the 87th minute.

English Premier League

White Hart Slain: Villas-Boas to sell Michael Dawson to QPR

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White Hart Slain: Villas-Boas to sell Michael Dawson to QPR - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Tottenham's appointment of Andre Villas-Boas was on the condition that the Portuguese trainer had money to spend and control over his inherited squad. After less than two months in charge the new man is certainly making his presence felt, with the club's playerbase being tailored to his liking.

White Hart Slain: Villas-Boas to sell Michael Dawson to QPR

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White Hart Slain: Villas-Boas to sell Michael Dawson to QPR - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

Tottenham's appointment of Andre Villas-Boas was on the condition that the Portuguese trainer had money to spend and control over his inherited squad. After less than two months in charge the new man is certainly making his presence felt, with the club's playerbase being tailored to his liking.

Stop The Clocks: Spurs, Harry Redknapp, The Media & The Fans

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Candles may have been lit, and there may even have been hushed talk of a silent vigil outside of White Hart Lane. Meanwhile, on social media platforms such as Twitter men grown men - threw around comments which indicated that many of them had jumped straight to the second stage of the Kübler-Ross Model five stages of grief anger having scarcely had the opportunity to feel the transient and illusory feeling of denial.

Is Mario Balotelli affecting City’s title aspirations?

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The above headline is a thought that's been brought up on several occasions, most notably by Alan Hansen every time he asked about City on Match of the Day. It's an opinion that's been thought and voiced so much in the last few months that it's turned into a rhetorical question. Mario Balotelli is affecting City's title pursuit in a negative manner.

Jose Mourinho – The aftermath of the Barcelona defeat

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On the weekend just past the Spanish daily newspaper, Marca, released what they claimed to be an exclusive. The newspapers football journalists had found out that Jose Mourinho, the Real Madrid coach, was dissatisfied with the level of hostility targeted in his direction and believing that his work was not recieving the plaudits he felt it welcomed he was going to leave his position at the end of the current season.

Suarez suspended

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Luis Suarez, fresh from a disciplinary hearing at the FA where he was found guilty of racism and given an eight match suspension, has now been disciplined with another suspension. This time it is for only one match and supposing that there is no immediate appeal it will be served in Liverpool's next match, at Anfield against Newcastle United.

The Metamorphosis of Lucas

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By Amy Eustace

"People just don't know how good Lucas is," prophesised Rafael Benitez, three years ago to the month. It was December 2008, and Liverpool had found themselves in a somewhat unfamiliar position by recent standards. Top of the table, ahead of the pack and with just one defeat for the first half of the season away to Spurs, the only problem was a smattering of frustrating draws.

Heath Pearce

Red Bulls Rewind: Defensive issues a cause for concern after Montreal loss

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BY DAVE MARTINEZ

There is a bittersweet feeling in the air at Red Bull Arena. Though today's press conference to officially announce the signing of Tim Cahill will surely nab headlines, a disappointing loss in Montreal will undoubtedly bubble beneath the surface.

USA vs. Venezuela: Lucy, I’m Home!

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Ricardo FTW!

The US's January Cupcake Campers took on Venezuela's B-minus side Saturday night in Glendale, Arizona.

And while the run of play favored the States, it was unlikely former scapegoat in Rico Clark who provided the only nail in the coffin as the US opened their pair of camp-closing games with a 1-0 victory.

Fulham

Oh Andy….

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Today, Andy Johnson officially signed for QPR on a two year contract, leaving Fulham after four seasons of patchy service. Tim has a great run down of Andy's impact at Fulham from earlier this year here, albeit with some not particularly glowing conclusions.

So what will we remember of Andy's time at Fulham?

Oh Andy….

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Today, Andy Johnson officially signed for QPR on a two year contract, leaving Fulham after four seasons of patchy service. Tim has a great run down of Andy's impact at Fulham from earlier this year here, albeit with some not particularly glowing conclusions.

So what will we remember of Andy's time at Fulham?

The Rest

Fellaini: I was scapegoat during Moyes’ season of failure

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Marouane Fellaini has revealed that he felt like a scapegoat last season when David Moyes dragged the champions of England to 7th in the title, below Fellaini's former club Everton.

Asked if he did feel like a ‘scapegoat' last season,' he replied: "Yes, a little bit. That is a difficult question.

POTD : Brazil Recovering From Silver Medal Football Defeat, Neymar and Dani Alves’ New Look

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THE HORROR! After a ridiculous (we mean it, in every sense of the word) 2-1 defeat to Mexico in the Olympics Football Final on Saturday, Brazil have one last friendly against Switzerland to play in on Wednesday. As written on Neymar's face, they'd prefer to head home now, if you'd kindly please, or at least take a break before the domestic season starts!

The Three Ringed Circus – Manager, Ownership, Sporting Director

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In the wake of the bizarre circumstances surrounding the Danny Califf trade, it is clear that the Unionare a team in crisis. I was previously willing to make excuses for a slow start that could be turned around in the latter half of the season. Given the lack of transparency with both the MLS and the Union, it's unclear where the source of the problems lies.

Five Choice ‘Words’ Sir Alex Ferguson Possibly Had With Ashley Young About His Diving

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By Chris Wright

Sir Alex Ferguson has gone on record this morning as saying that he's 'had a word' with Ashley Young about his fetish for humping the turf at Old Trafford with gay abandon telling the press that, while he feels that Young is being made a scapegoat of due to his affiliation with United (all that bloody diving's not really helping either), he fully expects the flimsy winger to curb his theatrics from now on.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Dortmund, Celtic, Robben and Referee Bashing

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On this week\'s review section we congratulate Messi, Dortmund and Celtic, while we report on Arjen Robben\'s nightmare game and sympathise with English referees.

Women’s Professional Soccer Suspends Play – WPS On Ice for 2012

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The day after U.S. soccer fans celebrated the women's CONCACAF win and their Olympic qualification comes word that the WPS is on ice for the 2012 season.

Word began to filter out via players and bloggers on social networks like Twitter Monday morning, and the league officially made the announcement midday.

Liverpool at Bolton 01.21.12

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12:30pm ET, live in the US on FSC

Last four head-to-head:
3-1 Liverpool (h) 08.27.11
2-1 Liverpool (h) 01.01.11
1-0 Liverpool (a) 10.31.10
2-0 Liverpool (h) 01.30.10

Last three matches:
Liverpool: 0-0 Stoke (h); 1-0 City (a); 5-1 Oldham (h)
Bolton: 2-0 Macclesfield (h); 0-3 United (a); 2-2 Macclesfield (a)

Goalscorers (league):
Liverpool: Suarez 5; Bellamy 4; Adam, Carroll, Gerrard, Maxi, Skrtel 2; Henderson, Johnson 1
Bolton: Klasnic 7; Eagles 3; K Davies, Ngog, Reo-Coker 2; Boyata, M Davies, Muamba, Petrov, Ricketts 1

Referee: Kevin Friend

Guess at a line-up:
Reina
Johnson Skrtel Agger Enrique
Henderson Gerrard
Downing Shelvey Maxi
Carroll

The same questions and concerns continue to be the focus.

Lay Off Aaron Ramsey

Wrighty7 at related • 2 views
The abuse I've seen thrown at Aaron Ramsey lately has been a sick joke.

Some of it has even bordered on things I wouldn't even wish on my worst enemy.

I couldn't believe my eyes at some of the stuff I've seen. I mean death threats?! Over a game of football?! Come on behave yourself.