Arsène Wenger and the Biennial World Cup

Photo courtesy of Nelson Ndongala (@whodunelson) at Unsplash.com Arsène Wenger and Mae West may not appear to be natural allies at first glance. The 71-year-old may be blissfully unaware of West’s collection of pithy sayings but in light of his endorsement of Fifa’s plan to host the World Cup every two years it appears thatContinue reading “Arsène Wenger and the Biennial World Cup”

Crystal Palace 0 Man City 120

21/09 There has been considerable interest generated by the nugget that I tweeted regarding the continuing lack of Palace goals in cup competitions relative to Manchester City’s embarrassment of riches. Michy Batshuayi scored Palace’s last goal in a cup match against Watford in the FA Cup quarter-final on 16th March 2019. Crystal Palace cup resultsContinue reading “Crystal Palace 0 Man City 120”

The 300 Club – current players who have made 300 appearances for one club Part One

Nearly all the attention was focused on a player who was not going to play. Even the BBC got wrapped up in the “Will he? Won’t he?” saga, with 5 Live’s football correspondent John Murray commentating on which Tottenham players he could spot as they trooped off the team bus and made their way aroundContinue reading “The 300 Club – current players who have made 300 appearances for one club Part One”

Palace go global as they join multi-club partnership

Lost amidst the first week of the European Championship and the announcement of next season’s Premier League fixtures it would have been easy to miss the news that Crystal Palace had joined the Global Football Alliance. Described as a strategic partnership between clubs operating in different countries Palace became the sixteenth member of a networkContinue reading “Palace go global as they join multi-club partnership”

Down, Down, Down – Why relegation already being decided is a pity

When Sam Allardyce finally lost his oft-quoted record of never being relegated from the Premier League there were quite a few people revelling in a spot of Schadenfreude. The memory of his grubby dethronement as England boss allied with his uncompromising and prickly persona combined to make him one of the least likeable managers. EarlierContinue reading “Down, Down, Down – Why relegation already being decided is a pity”

Fan engagement – now is time to act

This week’s publication of the 2019/20 Fan Engagement Index was understandably delayed because of the Covid pandemic, but ultimately it could hardly have been better timed. In light of the protests at Old Trafford last Sunday against the owners and the universal condemnation and subsequent implosion of the European Super League [see https://bit.ly/3gziruc%5D, the thornyContinue reading “Fan engagement – now is time to act”

Own Goals Part Three: Richard Dunne the undisputed OG king

This is the third part of the series on own goals and the focus is very much on the doyen of OG, but before honing in on the master of the art, we start with the first outfield player to get in on the act, Manchester City’s Garry Flitcroft.  Just a week after Mark Crossley’sContinue reading “Own Goals Part Three: Richard Dunne the undisputed OG king”

Like father, like son

So it looks highly likely that Erling Braut Haaland is on his way out of Borussia Dortmund and en route for either La Liga or the Premier League with Barcelona, Real Madrid, both Manchester clubs and Chelsea all in the frame. If he, or more significantly Mino Raiola, chooses England as his next destination, heContinue reading “Like father, like son”

The 2020/21 season and the concertina effect

This is my thirtieth weekly blog post I know, how time flies. Having started back in August we are now entering the final straight so it feels as good a time as any to reflect on what has happened over the last seven months. The 2020/21 season did not begin in August as is theContinue reading “The 2020/21 season and the concertina effect”

Football’s Wasteland: VAR, empty stadiums and fractious fragmentation

As I and many others have pointed out until we’re blue (or in some extreme cases purple) in the face the pure aesthetics of football are being steadily eroded for the sake of minuscule and misguided rulings. At its very best football flows with an elegance that few sports can match but under VAR itContinue reading “Football’s Wasteland: VAR, empty stadiums and fractious fragmentation”