Saturday, April 14, 2007

"2 More Wins To Secure 3rd Place"

Reds To Stay Focus In League

Despite Liverpool strolling into this season's UEFA Champions League semi-final and booking another meeting with fellow English giants, Chelsea, Reds boss, Rafa Benitez, has reiterated the importance of finishing third and sealing the place for next season's Champions League.

Rafa clearly doesn't want the Reds to miss out on the lucrative league and perhaps, the nightmare of the 04/05 season still haunts him. Then, despite finishing outside the top 4 in the domestic league, the sole saving grace was winning the Champions League and Benitez and his men are clearly not banking on winning the European Cup to seal a place next season.

And it is important to stay focus on the task ahead and not get carried away. Today's visit to the City of Manchester stadium is certainly no high profile game but by claiming all 3 points today might be a huge step towards sealing that place next season.

With the Hillsbrough anniversary looming, it's also a big weekend for the team as they look to step away from the past and into the future. Under the careful guidance of Rafa Benitez, Liverpool has the regular habit of starting slow and finishing strong. With 2 hard fought victories back to back, they'll be expecting yet another tough game ahead of them tonight.

With the blue half of Manchester ensuring safety at this point in time as well, they will do whatever they can to muster as much points as possible. After a proclaimed 'catastrophe in the making' few weeks back, their results have improved vastly and look very likely to survive any sort of scare this season.

Their 3-1 demolition of Fulham at Craven Cottage last week cost Chris Coleman his job and the Citizens will surely want to build on that win. But they'll have to do without star defender, Micah Richards while Craig Bellamy will miss the trip after being stretched off in the game against PSV on Thursday.

After being rested in midweek, Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher will be unleashed and raring to go. After scoring 5 goals in 4 games, in-form Peter Crouch will start and is likely to partner Dirk Kuyt, who was suspended on Wednesday. He might even dedicate a goal to his new born baby, who was delivered on Wednesday.

A point of note, Robbie Fowler might come on for a cameo appearance against his former club while the flags at the COM Stadium will be flown at half mast in respect of all who perished at the Hillsbrough disaster. YNWA.

Drogballs' Prediction: Man C 0-2 Liverpool. Kuyt and Crouch to get the goals.

Possible Line up: Reina, Riise, Agger, Carragher, Finnan, Gonzalez, Gerrard, Alonso, Pennant, Crouch, Kuyt;

Wanna Join The "Anfield Choir" ?

LIVERPOOL have given the go-ahead to form an official ‘Kop choir’ for the start of next season – as the new owners’ vision for the most famous stand in the world becomes clearer.

The plans to restore the unique atmosphere come as it’s revealed the Kop in the new stadium – which won’t now open until the 2010/11 season – will be an awesome 18,000 seater, single tier stand.

From next August, the Reds have agreed to set aside 1800 Kop tickets for the most vocal, passionate supporters in order to preserve the Anfield atmosphere.

In an unprecedented move, club officials have acted to create a specific ‘singing section’ of the famous terrace in a bid to ensure every home fixture replicates the volume of more high profile games.

However, the ECHO can confirm the new arena on Stanley Park definitely won’t be open in time for the start of the 2009-10 season as originally stated.

Architect HKS see the new stadium taking the form of an orchestral theatre, with The Kop taking centre stage towering over the pitch and other stands.

Drogballs: Isn't it great news, lads. Not on the choir part but rather, the new owners being sensible and sensitive enough to understand the club culture and trying their best to do whatever that pleases the fans. That assured me we won't be turning into a soul-less club anytime soon.

And that New Anfield plan sounds really promising. It's going to look a little unorthodox, I reckon. The Kop tier being able to hold 18,000 and bigger than other stands is going to make it 'stand out' and break out from the mold of modern day football stadiums that all look like a prototype of each other.

About the Anfield choir, I'm in support of it. Although the Anfield crowd do have their own initiative to sing most of the time but I think it's great to have a group of appointed 'loud-hailers' out there to take the lead and wake some fans up.

The smell and feel of Anfield might not be able to be brought over but I'm sure with the fans and owners working together, it won't be that far off and the combination of football plus music is certainly a sight to behold!

We Should Be Paying For This

We pay around 20 Sing Dollars a month for the subscription of sports channel here in Singapore and sometimes, it's a little boring to hear people like Andy Gray talking and ending their sentences with the word 'son' and David Pleat's Pascal Shimbomba feat but honestly if we're paying for this commentator:

I'd pay 30 a month. Hands down.

Funniest Football Moments?

I know, it happens everywhere. But as limited as my time is, I went on to search for some really ridiculous and funny things that happen on and off the football pitch. Shanks said it's more important than life and death but hey, take a breather and have a laugh!

Most important thing, VOTE.

1. Olivier Bernard's 'Ball To Face' Incident

2. Pires' Penalty Routine Against Man City

3. Rivaldo's Knee Jerk Reaction

4. Chris Brass' 'Best Own Goal, Ever'

5. Macclesfield vs Walsall's 'Multiball'

6. Gerrard Merk'd By Chelsea Mascot

It's not a lot and it's probably all I could think of at the moment but do give more suggestions and the 'voting booth' is just below the tagboard. Cheers!

Darvid Viya Is Your Man

As expected, David Villa of Valencia is still the one all of you hope to see in the Liverpool shirt next season. I've seen the match in which Valencia fell to Chelsea at the Mestalla and thought he did okay whereas Daniel Alves of Sevilla really did impress me last night.

Albeit being theatrical at times, he has good pace, movement and ball control. He made a fool out of Pascal Shimbomba with a nutmeg and was a constant thorn to Spurs.

Samuel Eto'o comes second and it was as predicted. A proven goal scorer and an excellent goal poacher, the Cameroonian striker's ability is never in doubt. But his work ethic and team work is in question while the tinkering style of Rafa might not suit him and his gigantic ego.

Anyway, thank you guys for your votes and response. Very much appreciated.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Oh Pleat....

As I was watching the Tottenham vs Sevilla UEFA (Yoofa) Cup game last night, I can't help but laugh at the way David Pleat pronounces the player's name. I mean, you sure he used to be a manager? If he's my manager and he can't pronounce my name properly then it is really saddening!

Anyway, the volume of my TV wasn't very loud but I could so clearly hear all the wrong pronunciation and all. It made me giggle:

  • "Good evening, everyone!" - I've NEVER heard a commentator do the opening speech like him, until last...evening :)
  • "Yoofa Cup" - You guessed, UEFA Cup
  • Shimbomba - Seriously? Chimbonda? (Shim-bon-da)
  • Tayno - Teemu Tainio (Ta-i-nio)
  • Malbranck - Steed Malbranque (Mal-Bronk)
  • Sevillia - Sevilla (Se-vee-ya)
  • Jaynus - Jermaine Jenas
This are just some funny pronunciation picked out. I shan't continue on with all the weird things he say like how Spurs should throw everyone up front and let Robinson do the sweeper role when they're 2-0 down.

But here's the big compilation by the F365 people during the World Cup. I beg you, don't drink anything now. If you spill your drink out, I'm not held responsible.

* "Liz Azaru" (Bixente Lizarazu)
* "Kakarrr" (Kaká)
* "Dirk Kurt" (Dirk Kuyt)
* "Drogbarrr" (Didier Drogba)
* "Adrianianho" (Adriano)
* "Mack-cher-arno" (Javier Mascherano)
* "Riqwelme" & "Rick Elm" (Juan Román Riquelme)
* "In-ga-zee" (Filippo Inzaghi)
* "Ronald Deano" (Ronaldinho)
* "Pear-lo" (Andrea Pirlo)
* "Poil" (Carles Puyol)
* "Inn-esta" (Andres Iniesta)
* "Doo-Roy", "Dough-Roy" and "Hoyte" (different player) (Johan Djourou)
* "Rays" (Jose Antonio Reyes)
* "Roque Junior" (Roque Santa Cruz - entirely different nationality and player)
* "Vieira" (Christian Vieri)
* "Sevilia" (Sevilla FC - the club)
* "Yung-berg" (Fredrik Ljungberg)
* "Marcus Da Beasley" (DaMarcus Beasley)
* "Ayorla" (Roberto Ayala)
* "Gilar-dinho", "Gilardini" and "Gilard Dean" - all in the space of 90 minutes (Alberto Gilardino)
* "Marqwez" (Rafael Marquez)
* "Heintzer" (Gabriel Heinze)
* "Shev-shenko" (Andriy Shevchenko)
* "Louie Garcia" (Luis Garcia)
* "Jockin", "Joe-Quinn" "Way-kin" (Joaquin)
* "More Reno" (Jose Mourinho)
* "Cliche" (Gael Clichy)
* "Trazago" (David Trezeguet)
* "Evrice" (Patrice Evra)

1...2...3.. Let's laugh at him.

EDIT: Patrick from SquadGod has listed another few golden lines from Mr. Pleat

"There's a little bit of a South American touch, if that's not Irish, about this European side, Portugal"

"I was inbred into the game by my father"

"There's Thierry Henry, exploding like the French train that he is"

"If there are any managers out there with a bottomless pit, I'm sure that they would be interested in these two Russians"

"At this moment there is not a problem at this moment"


Thursday, April 12, 2007

The 'Roles' In Football

Forget about the 'midfielders' and 'strikers' for positions in football. They're outdated terms and frankly, we've been using player's names and their abilities to epitomise a certain role and paste it into our reports and articles. Gone are the days of mentioning the 'anchor-man' role without the name 'Makalele' popping out.

Via <TheOffside>, there's a list of the 'roles' given to modern day footballers and you should really have a look <HERE>. Here are some examples:

Frank Lampard role (Chelsea) – Stand around for a bit. Get the ball. Whack it as hard as you can towards the goal. Hope for a deflection. Lampard thrives because the team is built around him, Makelele and Essien do all the leg work and give him the ball. Sure he’s scored 20 goals – but so could many players if they took every set piece and had 2 other players doing all the work in midfield allowing them to concentrate on shooting as often as possible. Imagine how many goals Lyon’s Juninho or some other more naturally talented player could score if you gave him the freedom and opportunities ol’ Franky enjoys. Maximum results for minimal natural talent defines the ‘Lampard role’.

Jamie Carragher role (Liverpool) – Fancy doing a job and not getting the credit you deserve? Try playing the ‘Carragher role’. The ‘Carragher role’ requires great patience as you are constantly overshadowed by more high profile team mates. You will get international recognition but only fill in for injured players at left-back, right-back and even defensive midfield - but never your natural position. But fear not, for those in the ‘Carragher role’ will soon join those in the ‘Makelele’ role as they are called underrated so often than they become overrated.

After much thinking, I came up with my own 'roles' about footballers and of course, most of them are just stigmas attached to them or even stereotyping. But, whatever. Have some fun with it eh?

The Djimi Traore Role (Or David May) - They are defenders who has gotten the European Cup winners medal, more than John Terry or CAshley Cole can ever imagine. But they're horribly bad defenders that you've totally no idea how they manage it and perhaps, they go under the 'most undeserving European Cup winners' category. But whatever, Djimi is famous for hacking players from behind, giving a large amount of penalties and of course that unforgettable 'Marseille Roulette', made famous by Zinedine Zidane, made infamous by Djimi for scoring with it, against Burnley. Sadly, into his own net.

The Momo Sissoko Role - All you need to do is to run around without direction. You can have an absolutely terrible sense of direction or positioning but fear not, long legs will bring save him from embarrassment. He can tackle well but what he does with the ball after that is most likely to be giving the possession back to the opponents. They call it the 'midfield destroyer', oh yea, sounds like a leaking dam. Passing is non existent under his 'technical ability' row.

Okay, I feel so bad criticising Momo actually. But honestly, everyone has flaws so either you take it seriously or like me, laugh it off. Any suggestions?

Interview With The Siren

Aye aye, she's one nice lady who's passionate about football. It's rare that ladies actually wake up 2.30am (or 3.30) in the morning just to watch and then write an instant report like her. The world being so small and cyberworld even smaller, I actually only found out she's my cousin's friend after visiting each other's blog for quite some time.

Okay, anyway here's a nice interview with the lady

1) Which is your team, baby?


2) In less than 10 words, why?

History, passion, fantastic reputation. reason for loving :p

3) Your greatest memory of your club?

Those 3-3 games, CL Finals, FA Cup, beating Chelsea, 5-3 win over Luton, 3-1 over Olympiacos....etc.

4) Favourite player of all time?

Ian Rush, Kenny Dalglish, Steve McManaman, Jamie Carragher

5) Current favourite player?

No favourite... Everyone who wears the red shirt is favourite.

6) Favourite club chant?

All round the Fields of Anfield Road
Where once we watched the King Kenny play (and he could play)
We had Heighway on the wing
We had dreams and songs to sing
Of the glory round the Fields of Anfield Road

7) Your club's lynchpin player and weakest link?

Steven Gerrard & Carragher the lynchpins, Peter Crouch & Jermaine Pennant the weakest.

8) Club(s) you hate? Feel free to erm... express yourself.

Man Utd, Chelsea, Everton, Real Madrid. ManYoo are scums, Chelsea are glory hunters, Everton...self explanatory and Real Madrid being bunch of useless over-rated over paid self-important egoistic players.

9) What would you give to be in the technical area with the manager when your team wins the EPL/Champions League/FA Cup?

Around $10 :p ha ha ha I don't know!

***Siren: Seriously???? Ten bucks??? Hahaha Rafa must be thrilled...***

10) You are manager for a day. Name your starting XI and your bench.

Reina, Finnan, Carragher, Agger, Aurelio, Pennant, Gerrard, Alonso, Riise, Kuyt, Bellamy; Dudek, Hyypia, Mascherano, M Gonzalez, Crouch

11) You're still the manager. The team is down 2-0 at halftime and you've just lost your top striker. What do you say?

"Bollocks, wave the white flag and surrender"..... nah "Hey look, the fans out there are still singing the anthem and you're responsible to go out there and give them some hope. If Traore and Baros can help overturn a 3-0 deficit against AC Milan why can't you?"

12) It's time for summer shopping. You have $40million. Who do you have your eyes on and why?

David Villa, Jan Klaas-Huntelaar and Daniel Alves. We need proven goal scorers and the first two names fit the bill although they'll need some time to adapt to the Premiership. They might even fail but I believe class will prevail at the end. Alves is probably the best right back/wingback in Europe now and we know, there's a problem on the right flank for Liverpool and therefore, we need someone there to give us a little extra width and class.

13) Name your dream team - you can pick current players from any European league. I'm feeling generous - name 23 players.

GK: Gigi Buffon, Petr Cech, Iker Casillas
DF: John Terry, Jamie Carragher, Dani Alves, Eric Abidal, Carles Puyol, Gianluca Zambrotta
MF: Andrea Pirlo, Gennaro Gattuso, Steven Gerrard, Xabi Alonso, Cesc Fabregas, Cristiano Ronaldo, Claude Makelele, Lionel Messi, Ronaldinho
ST: Thierry Henry, Ruud van Nistelrooy, Andriy Shevchenko, David Villa, Didier Drogba

Note that it's done quite awhile ago so don't mind seeing Crouchy and Pennant in the 'weakest link' section, eh?

Into The Semis, It's Chelsea Again

Crouch Proves The Difference

UEFA Champions League
Quarter Finals 2nd Leg

LIVERPOOL 1 - 0 PSV Eindhoven
(Liverpool win 4-0 on aggregate)

LIV - Crouch (67min);

Match Highlights:

The big man is scoring for fun again. Once ridiculed as just a bambi on ice and his inability to hit the cow's arse with a banjo, Crouch has came a long way and last night, he scored his 5th goal in 4 starts and it takes his European tally this season to 6, on par with the likes of Drogba and van Nistelrooy. Only Kaka is above the trio with 7 goals.

It's hard to imagine Crouch being mentioned along with the likes of Kaka and van Nistelrooy but this man has proved his worth. Despite failing to score in his first 24 hours of play in the Liverpool jersey, he has since turned into a rather unnoticeable goal scorer and the 6 goals in 9 Champions League games speak for itself.

His goal last night completed a formality for Liverpool as they carried their 3-0 win over from Holland back to Anfield. Even with the Kopites roaring them on with songs and warming their throats over the impending visit of Chelsea with the 'F*** OFF CHELSEA FC' song, Liverpool rarely got into second gear and it proves to be quite a dull match with nothing much of note.

Even with Rafa rambling about how they'll show respect to their opponents, knowing that they're one foot into the semi finals, he dropped key players like Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher and let the likes of Sami Hyypia and Bolo Zenden with a run out.

Things didn't go Liverpool's way as Craig Bellamy had to be stretched off with a knee injury. Without Bellamy's pace up front and his constant harrying, it was a little more difficult for them to play.

And credit to PSV for turning up with a plan in mind and did well even though they know they had absolutely no chance. Their task's difficulty was upped a notch late in the second half after debutant Dirk Marcellis was unfairly sent off for a challenge on Zenden. It was a yellow card at worst but Italian referee, Roberto Rosetti, decided to show a straight red. A very odd decision indeed.

Playing with 10 men, PSV still looked particularly comfortable as they had an edge in terms of possession but Liverpool once again showed their clinical side as Crouch nailed the final nail in the coffin after Robbie Fowler's fantastic assist.

Riise's cross was turned towards goal by PSV defender, Eric Addo, and Gomes had to be at his best to prevent it from going in but Fowler was there to pick up the ball. With the angle being too acute, he choses to square the ball back into the penalty area for Crouch to score a tap in.

And Liverpool should've put an icing on the cake late in the game when Jermaine Pennant had the chance to further extend the lead but his finishing really needs to improve as both his initial shot and the follow-up was blocked by Gomes.

It wasn't a game you'll expect to see in a quarter finals as neither team had the urgency to step up but it was probably due to Liverpool's smash and grab effort last week in Eindhoven that provided the team with the comfortable 3-0 cushion. With ManYoo winning 7-1 last night, they'll surely grab all the major headlines while Liverpool looked like they've sneaked into the semi-finals quietly without much controversy.

It wasn't the best of matches but it was a professional performance from both sides. Now the Reds will move on to the semi-finals with Chelsea in sight and a repeat of the 2005 Champions League season is on hand.

Semi Finals:

Man Utd (ENG) vs AC Milan (ITA)
Chelsea (ENG) vs LIVERPOOL (Eng)

For more goals and highlights, visit for more!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Night Of High Drama

Seventh Heaven For United

Is there an easier game of football in the Champions League this season?

'Last week', some say, when Liverpool thrashed PSV 3-0 away from home and it seemed like they're already one step into the semi finals.

But last night, ManYoo turned on style and spanked a sorry Roma side 7-1. Yes, S-E-V-E-N. With a 2-1 lead to protect, the team from Italy came without a plan and discipline and the game was all but over within the first ten minutes.

I switched on, expecting the Italians to put up with their usual resilience and 'catenaccio' and expected them to defend the lead with their lives.

But sadly, they came like an ill-disciplined African side (no offence but it really looked like it) and with absolutely no plan to defend or put up a fight. They gave so much space for United to exploit that Ronaldo and company tore them to shreds with all the spaces left behind.

But honestly, take NOTHING away from ManYoo. I'm feeling dirty but I've to say well played. This is how football ought to be played and how sexy football should look. It was precise, concise and surgical. Their passes shredded Roma into pieces, like knife on hot butter.

Everytime ManYoo got the ball near the Roma half, they threatened. They attacked with such pace and tenacity that Roma looked like a rabbit caught in front of the car headlights. They've absolutely no idea how to stop them from playing and it might be down to the player's naivety and Luciano Spaletti's inexperience.

When Alan Smith planted the ball past Doni for the second within the 10th minute, you knew a massacre was at hand. ManYoo played with such speed that Roma couldn't keep up and with the Old Trafford faithfuls cheering them on, there was absolutely no way back from the Italian side.

Arsenal are reknown for their sexy football but now, ManYoo gave an absolutely stunning performance with not only sexy football but it was clinical as well. If they continue to play like this, there'll be almost nothing that stands in their way for their treble.

Chelsea Left It Late

It has become like a habit for Jose Mourinho's team. Leaving it late.

Time and again when they looked like heading for a draw, they'll come up with spectacular winning goals and last night, Chelsea booked a place in the Champions League semi final by defeating Valencia 2-1 at the Mestalla.

It was made even more difficult after former Liverpool striker, Fernando Morientes, scored after a defensive lapse and made it 2-1 to the home side.

But with superior players, they overcame the Spanish giants with Andiry Shevchenko scoring the equaliser before Michael Essien scoring the late winner. Santiago Canizares undid all his good work previously after he left his near post uncovered and the Ghanaian international fired home the winner.

So it seemed like it's going to be another Chelsea vs Liverpool semi finals, barring an almighty catastrophe at Anfield tonight.

Cookie Crumbled

If you're not aware, Fulham has sacked manager, Chris Coleman and replaced him with former Norn Iron manager, Lawrie Sanchez. The sacking came despite only 5 games away from the end of season. From a seemingly safe position, now Fulham has deteriorated and is in danger of relegation.

But I felt the sacking comes at the wrong time and what's the point of sacking a manager with only 5 games left. Coleman has done a decent job over the years despite losing going through the motion of losing his best players every summer. Van der Sar, Saha and Malbranque left and he has close to no resources in replacing them.

But perhaps Fulham as gone stale and in need of a change. They've been a well-liked club and it'll be quite sad to see them go down but maybe, it's time to be more ambitious for Al Fayed and his club.

Good luck.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Lookalikes In Defence

Just covered some lookalikes in the previous post and it seemed to spark off some interest. Looking at the defenders.....

Jamie Carragher & John Bishop (Comedian)

Sami Hyypia & Ryan Stiles (Who's Line Is It, Anyway?)

John Arne Riise & Shrek....Wayne Rooney:

Steve Finnan & Matt Damon:


Mother Of All Round-Ups

This Easter weekend has been a really busy one with some teams playing two games in three days and Spurs played two games with only 39 hours apart so don't mind me IF I miss out on anything important. But it's just a summary of everything big that happened.

Title Race Blown Open?

Seriously, this season's title race is really going right down the wire and it's the closest we've seen since Roman Abramovich decided to build his dream team over in England.

Both teams have European ambitions as well and it isn't going what both Sir Alex and Mourinho wants as ManYoo lost 2-1 at the Stadio Olimpico while Chelsea were held by Valencia at Stamford Bridge.

Back in the domestic front, there was mixed fortunes. United surprisingly lost to 'Arry's Portsmouth, who's chasing after the UEFA Cup spot.

Fergie gambled by putting Fletcher and Richardson in the same team and it backfired spectacularly. But nothing comes close to challenging Rio's spot for being ridiculous as he rolled the ball into the back of his own net.

Lapse of concentration has been a major issue for him and the only thing that differentiates world class and capable. Van der Sar too, needs to take some blame as he came out aimlessly. His form in recent games has became pretty erratic with two similar mistakes in two games.

Chelsea, meanwhile, put on their usual effective self and finished a lethargic Spurs side 1-0. Ricardo Carvalho with the winning goal and once again, it was down to Paul Robinson's inability to get down quick enough to save the shot.

Take nothing away from Ricardo as he hit it with some power and precision but once again, Robbo got down at the speed of 1km/h and just look back at the season, you'll be able to tell it's not a one-off situation. Ask Tugay, Nick Shorey and even Claude Makalele!

In the coming month, it's only going to be more fired up and more mind games being played between the two scheming and cunning men. They'll take every opportunity to mount pressure on each other and testing out each other's wits.

To me, the title is still very much in United's grasp and only theirs to lose. They'll have a better run in and perhaps, by the time the two sides meet, it might only be a regular match with nothing to play for as ManYoo wraps up the title race by then.

What Jose said was true, that ManYoo wouldn't want to play his Chelsea side the next week. And it'll certainly be a very interesting one if ManYoo really do slip up the next game. Newcastle 96/97 comes to mind, eh?

Relegation Battles Seems Confusing...Gunners Lost Aim...Etc,

It's funny how once Charlton and West Ham were both deemed hopeless and should be ready to face Championship football next season just about a month ago.

Watford is an outside question because even being a well liked club can't save you. Without Marlon King, we knew they'll struggle.

Sheffield United, looked a little stable earlier this season, starts on a free-fall and they've now encountered an enormous problem that is similar to Watford.

They lost their key striker, Rob Hulse.

What's football without scoring goals, you ask. Well, ask Arsenal. Despite mustering a grand total of 30 shots on goal in a single match (the only time I see that number is in Football Manager), they got a major sucker punch when Bobby Zamora sneaked in and score. Offside or not, at least he took his chance.

The Gunners were presented chance after chance and there's a lack of excuses for Arsene Wenger to find as West Ham did indeed, came with a plan to hit L'Arse on a counter attack while defend deep. You can't fault West Ham for 'parking the bus' as there were 30 shots on goal! If West Ham indeed parked a bus, then they really have to get a bigger one next season.

It's probably down to Robert Green's inspired form and poor finishing from the Gunners. If Green wasn't able to save, the post and the bar were the Hammer's savior. Then you have some absolutely astonishing misses from Rosicky and Adebayor. Jaded, disinterested and disheartened. That's how they fared and they brought that same mentality over to St. James' Park.

The free flowing football of Arsenal was not seen and it was just sluggish and sloppy at times. Players like Fabregas, who were so brilliant earlier, looked like his legs were tied with sandbags while Baptista, Hleb and Aliadiere just doesn't seemed to make the cut.

If Arsenal were to challenge anything major next season, they should look to having replacements for certain players instead of bemoaning injuries and luck. They are excuses to get you through a short period, not in extended.

Next week's clash with Bolton at the Emirates will be a very interesting one as the Trotters now edge dangerously close to Arsenal's 4th spot, which they're clinging on to, says Arsene. They'll have to be in their best to defeat their bogey team and the result will have a major effect of the final standings.

Meanwhile, Curbs must be delighted with that shock result but that also made the relegation extra exciting this season. West Ham seemed on the trot while Charlton, although drawn their last 2 games, seemed up for it.

Teams like Sheffield United and Wigan ought to be careful now and start picking up points and the plight of Fulham is serious as Chris Coleman's side, whose home form is the only reason why they've stayed up for the past few seasons, are getting trounced at Craven Cottage. Surely, not a good sign.

Whatever it is, the final month of the Premiership might provide even more spectacle with clubs fighting for survival as well as the title race heats up. It'll proof to be one heck of a ride and do stay tune for more.

The Difference....

Was reading F365 just now and saw something that strikes me:

And what do Arsenal, sans Henry and Van Persie, and Kiera Knightly have in common? They are both lovely to behold but suffer from having nothing to show up front.

Actually, quite true. And can't discount Liverpool from it as well, for some parts of the season we're pretty crap up front as well.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Long Lost Brothers Of Football

Sometimes you watch football and you've got to wonder whether they're long lost brothers or somewhat. They look almost the same or maybe has the same face features. Here are some examples:

CRonaldo = Mikel Arteta = Cesc Fabregas

Chris Coleman = Milan Baros = Javier Saviola = Michael Pena (non footballer)

Was watching 'Shooter' over the weekend and I thought they all looked pretty similar!

Do come up with a suggestion if you feel like. Just drop a comment or mail me.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

How To Deal With ManYoo Fans, 300 Style

Those of you who've watched 300 knows it's a class film although the story is a little shallow but great action. Gerard Butler portrayed King Leonidas well and his face is everywhere on the net. His famous line 'THIS IS SPARTA!' has sparked photoshoppers and 'artists' to redo spoofs and make a joke out of it.

Adding to the fact that the United fans got a royal serving in Roma by the Italian police, this is what that they came up with. How to deal with United fans...

As seen here:


More non football related 300 spoofs HERE

New Poll Is Up

Alright, after the Mickey Owen poll, I've set up another since the response seemed to be quite encouraging so this week, we'll do another one regarding the future.

It's widely believed that Rafa will have a 40million war chest this summer (I don't believe anyway) and which of the below players do you think will have the highest chance of joining the 'Red Army' next season or maybe the player you want to see most to don the red jersey.

The striker that is tagged along with Liverpool all this while is Valencia striker David Villa (left). He's the goal poacher that perhaps, Liverpool have been lacking in recent times after the departure of Michael Owen and the Spanish could yet provide more top quality goods to the side.

He loves to drift into wide position and plays in a similar way to Craig Bellamy so perhaps, Rafa MIGHT need to offload the Welsh before going ahead with him.

But he lacked the physical strength and could struggle against the hustle and bustle of the English game, which is constantly played at 100 miles per hour. The laid back approach of the Spanish might be their stumbling block and could turn out to be yet another Fernando Morientes.

The wing position has been quite a problem in recent seasons as Rafa continually looked for a top quality right winger. Simao Sabrosa was supposed to sign but backed out in the last minute 2 seasons ago.

But the deal could yet be alive once again this season with resources made available for the Reds boss. The Portugese international is an experienced winger who is skillful and has pace to burn. Although nearing his 30s, his experience could prove to be quite important in Liverpool's bid for the title next seasons.

Another winger in consideration is Daniel Alves from Sevilla. The Brazilian attacking full back has been a revelation for the Spanish side who won last season's UEFA Cup.

Capable of playing in both right back and right midfield position, his versatility is an asset while his small build makes him an agile and mobile player. Blessed with not only pace but also wonderful technique, this player will be a mainstay in the Brazilian squad in years to come.

Another striker who's name has been linked with all major English clubs for the past 2-3 seasons is Fernando Torres (left). The Athletico Madrid captain has remained loyal to the club up till this point but to further improve himself, he knows that he'll have to move on to a bigger club.

ManYoo have been tracking him for quite awhile but hasn't made the move yet therefore Rafa could bring another Spanish into the fray. The enigmatic striker, who has had a wonderful World Cup, suffered a little of the post World Cup syndrome and is currently struggling in the La Liga. Over-rated in my eyes, but perhaps it's time for him to move on and maybe for us to give him a try. He won't come cheap, though.

Back to the wings, it's quite a problematic one. Harry Kewell has had his days but injuries sets in and we're not sure what level he's at now. Fabio Aurelio is another regular in the medical room and therefore, it's left with Riise and Gonzalez on the wing.

Riise predominantly plays in the left back slot and Gonzalez has yet to prove his worth as he continues to struggle in the Premiership. Getting an experienced left winger who have tasted the Premiership might be the key here and that's the reason why I brought up Morten Gamst Pedersen (right) of Blackburn.

Known for not only his hair, the Norwegian has a intricate left foot and a deft touch. Ask any ManYoo fan and the sound of Pedersen's name might make them cringe. His free kicks success rate is quite impressive as well as his overall contribution to the team. Important thing is he's of proven quality and need not worry about how he'll settle down.

Bless all the Portugese wingers, Ronaldo, Figo, Simao and Quaresma. Oh yes, Ricardo Quaresma of Porto. He skillful and pacy winger who was once a Barcelona player but fell short of their standards perhaps due to the competition from Ronaldinho and Lionel Messi. He's not a big name and he has the power to frustrate just like Luis Garcia. But when he's on form, even Chelsea found him a handful.

Make your decision now and it could be another player which I've not mentioned above. The poll is set up just below the tagboard and it's not hard to miss.

Reds Triumph Over Spirited Reading

Kuyt Ends Goal Drought To Score Winner

English Premiership

Reading 1 - 2 LIVERPOOL

REA - Gunnarsson (47min);
LIV - Arbeloa (15min), Kuyt (86min);

Match Highlights

Advantage Liverpool as they managed to shrug off their usual away day blues and European hangovers to move into pole position for the race for third place. Better news as Arsenal stumbled at home to the resurging West Ham side at the Emirates stadium.

It was not the best performance from the Liverpool side as they had to withstand heavy pressure from Reading, who relentlessly gave the visiting team problems down the flanks. Stephen Hunt was lively and proved to be quite a handful for Steve Finnan.

But Liverpool survived and managed to ground out an important win at the Madjeski Stadium, which is never an easy place to play at. The crowds were getting behind their team and many teams went away with nothing.

Dirk Kuyt provided the winner after Jermaine Pennant's wonderful outside foot cross found his head and he was able to direct it across the goal and past goalkeeper, Marcus Hahnemann. It was the first goal in 9 games for the Dutchman as he finally breaks his scoring duck and gave Liverpool all 3 points.

But credit where it is due, Reading was brilliant throughout, just like they did all season. They didn't gave up when Alvaro Arbeloa gave Liverpool the lead, they came back for the second half strong and found the equaliser. They seemingly deserved something out of this game but at the end of it, lady luck just didn't seemed to favour them on this day.

With Liverpool's European exploits in midweek, Reading welcomed them with a very attacking minded set up and threatened early on with John Oster going close. His shot stung the hands of Jose Reina.

But Liverpool, who has been very effective in front of goal in recent games, hit Reading on the counter attack and it was a goal from an unlikely source. Alvaro Arbeloa, the Spanish defender who started in place of the injured Aurelio, found himself one on one with the goalkeeper after Peter Crouch threaded the ball into his path.

Finishing the move that he started with aplomb, the curled the ball past Hahnemann, Owen-esque finish that is. What a way to score your first ever goal for the club. It was a well worked move and the Reading defence was caught static and square.

Even though Liverpool seemingly controlled the game and had the upper hand, Reading did not relent and self destruct like PSV did on Wednesday. Maybe Steve Coppell had a few harsh words with the team in the second half, they came out all guns blazing.

Bryjnar Gunnarsson, who was shifted out to the right back position, scored from acute angle after he controlled the ball from Hunt beautifully before striking it in off the post.

But some ingenious substitution by Rafa paid off with the two substitutes, Jermaine Pennant and Dirk Kuyt with a well worked winner. Pennant seemed to have found a bit of form of late and looked comfortable on the ball while his assist for the goal was brilliant.

It wasn't the best performance but it was effective at the same time. Lucky or plucky, whatever you can name it, it was a well worked win and their persistence paid off. Reading will have to count themselves a little unlucky but should be proud of their efforts.

Drogballs' Player Ratings:

Reina (7) - Comfortable. Good range of passing

Arbeloa (8) - Good goal and solid at the back. Looked like a shrewd signing
Hyypia (7) - Dealt with all the high balls well
Carragher (8) - Solid as ever. Typical performance
Finnan (6) - At fault for the goal. Struggled against Stephen Hunt

Gerrard (7) - Could've scored but contributed just enough
Sissoko (5) - My word, learn to pass. It's either foul or misplaced passes from him
Mascherano (7) - Composed and industrious
Gonzalez (6) - Albeit a few good crosses, generally disappointing

Crouch (6) - One assist aside, anonymous
Bellamy (5) - Time his run badly, poor controls. Just not his day

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