March 29, 2010

March 24, 2010

Backwards Pass: I call bullshit

Excuse me for not falling for this silliness, but these rumors of rappers about to dive into football, well, it's nothing but struttin' and flexin' nuts.

Am I the only one that thinks this is retarded? I mean, these reports are e v e r y where. It's in both soccer and non-soccer pages (wow, an article in the music industry about soccer without a wag or Beckham in it). Maybe that's a good thing?

Nah. I just want to know, why is everyone falling over the idea of Jay-Z, P.Diddy, LMFAO, Lady Gaga (slippery slope, but highly unlikely) owning their club. Do you really think it'll make your club that much cooler? It's not like Palace would even ever get the chance to pop bottles of Kristal celebrating the FA Cup.

If either of these guys decide to dip their chocolate and champagne covered balls into football, it won't be the same as the typical takeovers we've seen this year a-la-Citeh. I say, pull your pants up and move along. I'd rather have a dirty Russian or Arab take over with actual money than a hyped-up celebrity with the appearance of money. Overpaid players don't need more incentive to party. Or you get this.

That's one way to get back

I just finished watching Chelsea pummel poor Portsmouth. Malouda is just too dangerous. He doesn't even seem like he is on form, but give him two touches and he'll show you why. Truly scary.

The loss does nothing for the impending firesale at Fratton Park (so everyone has been spouting today and yesterday).

Hmm, but an interesting bit from the New York Times says any cleanout garage sale wouldn't be immediate.

Balotelli caught 'red'-handed

I'm sure everybody has read it in the soccer tabloids of late, that Super Mario Balotelli was seen wearing a Milan shirt - the rossoneri kind. Well, here is the incriminating evidence.

Backwards Pass: MINEMINEMINE

Greatest own goal evar?

March 22, 2010

Summer silly season? September? December?

Throw your preseason preconceptions out the window. While you're at it, stuff it along with December's pre-holiday form and January's fixture list. This time of year, form means nothing as teams begin to crumble. After watching Chelsea's agonizing and tortuous dump out of the League of Campeones, I just can't sleep easy until Wednesday's face-off against suddenly resurgent Portsmouth, coached by one and only Chelsea ghost Avram Grant.

Speaking of Chelsea ghosts. God, I can only hate this as much as I love this. We love you Iceman, we do.

March 19, 2010

Possible Leaked 2010 Manchester United, Arsenal, and Liverpool Kits

So I remember a couple years ago when AIG replaced Vodaphone, that it was declared the most lucrative shit sponsorship in football history. I remember thinking that it all must have been a part of the soon-to-blow bubble, and that there would be nothing else to come close to that, but wait. New shirt sponsor Aon to take over for 20 million a season. Wait. What? Aon is also an American Insurance company? Can they please get a policy against this?

I love this. I have a feeling a half green and yellow away kit for next season would go well all around.

Liverpool caught wind of this, and decided to try and one-up the Mancs on absolutely hideous design.

The authenticity of these is questionable, as the away kit has a Champions League patch. Why would they need that? Here is a better possibility, but with no shirt sponsor yet.

While we're speculating kits, here's an interesting throwback idea.

March 12, 2010

Y Hallo Thar... Nevermind

This is horrible. And only worse to watch. Beckham out of the World Cup.

March 9, 2010

Thoughts before I sleep... David Moyes is a Genius of our Time

I was just thinking today, as I was watching Everton's unabashed thrashing of Hull City, that David Moyes is a man's manager: he is the one of a kind, genuine, player-fan-supporter of the game. He understands it. He's the kind of leader in a man who you wouldn't know it to guide you in the right direction, but if you were stuck on a captainless boat he would be the one that after several hours people unknowingly turn to rely on. It never struck me as so until today.

For the People's Club, he is the unheralded People's Leader. You really wouldn't give him the credit though, despite his vast and extensive experience. Growing up in Scotland, making his debut for some small club named Celtic, the only version of the game he's ever known is the hard-nosed, physical, in-your-face test of strength and endurance. His game has never been overtly flashy, nor pretty, but his tactics and knowledge belie his thick appearance. Still, through his playing days with clubs from Celtic, to the CU's, Bristol City, Dunfermline, and Preston North End (which for some reason I can only envision a young, but wizened-faced defender roughing it in snow and mud, like the good ol' days), he was never the standout. He was consistent. And steadfast. Attributes of the quiet leader that replaced Gary Peters when Preston North End were facing relegation.

History aside, this season has not lived to the potential that Everton showed in recent seasons past. Last year in particular, Everton showed glimpses of brilliance that reminded us of the People's football. However, ever since the 'black death' swept through Goodison Park, it wasn't just that pundunts wrote off Moyes' side as a bye, they felt comfortable and content to forget about Everton. Hell, I know even I did.

But the thing about Moyes that I realized listening to his press interviews is that he carries a surprising air of patience and, for lack of a better word, faith around him. I mean, in January when faced with the worst injury crisis in recent Premiership history, he remained calm and collected. When everyone else was yammering about the lack of transfer funds and the shitty world economic state, David Moyes made only one move. But it was so key, so crucial, and so genius, the way he made only one signing (a loan at that too, and look at the dividends his American investment has paid). And how he managed to remain patient when so many Rafa's and Mourinho's would have panicked and played the get out of jail free card, is bewildering in today's age of management.

In fact, it even warms my heart. Because the thing that opened my eyes to all of this, was that I remembered in my playing days when I was much younger, I had a coach. But he wasn't just a coach for our team, who ran drills and warmups. He was our rock, our father figure, the man who no matter the situation had all the answers. And when he didn't have the answer, that wasn't the important thing to focus on. He'd remind us of the attitude, to pull our heads out of asses, hard when we needed it, and softly when we couldn't hear. He reminded us that the play never came from the game, tactics, weather, form, or luck. It was the player, and the team. He just knew how to get your internal fire going without having to push it or force it on you. Kind of like this.

The thing is at the end of the day, you listen to Moyes talk about how he was still disappointed at how despite the injury crisis earlier this season, which if had not happened would probably have placed Everton in UEFA contention, happily say "that is just how football goes". And you know, just like Brian Clough, a great among greats in history, Moyes probably walked out of the interview into his post-match talk whistling to remind his players of practice the next day.

Moyes is not the kind of manager you compare with the Mourinho's or Ferguson's of the game. He never will be. Those kinds of managers instill camaraderie, or fear. Machine-like efficiency, or narrow-minded superfluity. They focus too much on aspects that only highlight one part of the game, and by doing so they miss out on the point of it all. No, Moyes is the man who anytime he speaks commands respect, and only because you know that deep down he knows that football is a part of life, and life is just a part of football. No matter the weather, the luck of the fifty-fifty challenge, the injuries, he can only continue to do what he only knows how. If only club owners could act with such maturity and experience, then we wouldn't need to be reminded of the class that David Moyes is.

March 8, 2010

Classic goals

I am distracting myself, so I might as well drag you into it. Enjoy some classic, yet brilliant goals.

March 4, 2010

GotW: Friendly fire

This is why I like international breaks. They are always bound to produce a bit of class. Niko serves up a bit of swerve this week.

March 3, 2010