YEARS AGO, England was always excluded from any realistic bid to stage a major competition. Part of this was the appalling record the country had in terms of its hooligan fans, the other factor was the sub-standard stadiums around the UK. Some cynics felt that UEFA and FIFA were very anti-England and given that 30 years separated 1966 and 1996, they may have had a … Continue reading Ground debate: The Premier – a land of make believe
WHEN Manchester City lost their unbeaten run to Chelsea a few weeks ago, it didn’t take more than a few minutes for schadenfreude to creep into the narrative. “You may be good, but you ‘aint no invincibles,” was the first tweet to appear, I believe from none other than Arsenal fan Piers Morgan. Since 2004, any prospective Premier champion, or team that sets a blistering pace, … Continue reading The obsession with “invincible”
WITH Sunderland now in League One, attendances in the third tier of English football are enjoying a revival, with the average above 8,000 for the first time since 2009-10 when Leeds United, Norwich City and Southampton were all in the division. Sunderland’s Stadium of Light is averaging almost 30,000 this season – some 12,000 more than Portsmouth, another famous old name that has seen better … Continue reading Ground debate: League One – between a rock and a hard place
THERE may be four English teams in the last 16 of the UEFA Champions League, but judging by the first few months of the 2018-19 season, the concept of a “league within a league” is well and truly embedded in the Premier. This might just be the season that the Premier picks up the Champions League, especially as Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Barcelona are … Continue reading Just how strong is the Premier?
IF LONDON’s often abysmal infrastructure had got its way, I would not have reached Craven Cottage on time for Fulham’s second Premier League home game of the season. Train delays, tube disruptions, over-crowding from the Notting Hill Carnival and to top that, incessant rain. Normally, that wouldn’t bother me, but a damaged knee made the journey all the more challenging. Hopefully, the game would compensate. … Continue reading River-Cottage-Football: Mitro’s definitely on fire