IN JANUARY 1969, England centre-half Jackie Charlton handled the ball in the penalty area at Wembley and a 20 year-old forward named Florea Dumitrache stepped-up to score past Gordon Banks with 16 minutes to go. England, the World Champions, were … Continue reading Toothless in Transylvania: Romania’s sad decline
We’re familiar with what’s going on in the big five football leagues: the English Premier; La Liga; the Bundesliga; Serie A and Ligue 1. But what about some of the lower profile competitions, leagues that contains some big names from a more democratic age? There’s no doubt that some familiar names are running the show in many Central European leagues, but there are very few tight battles as some of the leading clubs start to pull away from their respective packs. In Austria, it’s looking like Red Bull Salzburg will clinch their third Bundesliga title in four years. They are … Continue reading What’s going on in Mittel Europa?
Think of the giants of European football and the names reel of the tongue: Barca, Real, Bayern, the Milans, United and Chelsea. They have dominated European club football for the past few years and in the case of the Spanish and Italians, for many decades. But there is a wind blowing from the East and Chelsea, this week, may find it a very chill one. Shakhtar Donetsk may put a nail in the Blues’ hopes of further progress in a competition they unexpectedly won last season and at the same time, they may also enhance their own chances of shocking … Continue reading Europe will be forced to accept a new order