Saturday, February 09, 2008

Arteta interview

Spaniard is the most fouled player in the Premier League but still loves his life at Everton. He talks to Daniel Taylor about how well he has settled in England and his international hopes
Arteta puts his spiritual home before a cap

Friday, February 08, 2008

African Cup of Nations Update [yes, another one]

Managers ought not to expect too much from their players after a gruelling Cup of Nations, says Brian Oliver
Out of Africa
Everton manager David Moyes is considering the future of £11.25 million club record signing Yakubu and preparing to fine the player two weeks' wages (£80,000) following his failure to return from Africa Cup of Nations duty with Nigeria
Everton fury with missing Yakubu
After his team's thrilling African Cup of Nations win over the hosts, Geremi is now determined to bring joy to the whole of Cameroon
Pharoahs beware: sleeping lions are stirring

EPL news

"Keegan keen on Henry" - Yeah, and I'm keen on Scarlett Johansson, but for some reason she won't return my calls...

The Newcastle United manager told supporters he would like to beat the highest transfer fee ever paid
Kevin Keegan ready to pay for Thierry Henry
The Liverpool manager is backing his wayward striker to rediscover his goalscoring touch against Chelsea on Sunday
Rafael Benitez backing Dirk Kuyt to regain form
Man City have agreed a bumper new 5½-year deal with Micah Richards
Richards commits to City
Manchester City ready to ban fans who break minute's silence at derby as Sven-Goran Eriksson says 'it must be respected'
City hold breath over Munich tribute
Gary Neville's ongoing struggle to get fit has prompted Man Utd to enquire about Porto's pacy right-back Jose Bosingwa
Fears over Neville press United to declare interest in Bosingwa

EPL To Go Global

Extra games to be worth £5m per club...

Sunderland boss Roy Keane has become the highest-profile name to back English Premier League plans to stage some matches across the world.

Fergie Fury: Sir Alex Ferguson is angry that club managers, including himself, were not consulted before the Premier League made public their plans for an 'international round' of matches.

How the game is changing shape

Football League founded, with 12 clubs, three years after the Football Association had sanctioned professionalism

Second Division formed and promotion and relegation introduced, with two places contested via "test" matches between the bottom two teams in the First Division and top two in the second

League expanded to two divisions of 18; automatic two-up two-down promotion and relegation introduced

Top flight expanded to 22 teams as football resumes after the first world war

Number of promotion and relegation places increased to three

Three points for a win introduced

Promotion and relegation play-offs initiated involving third-, fourth- and fifth-placed teams in the Second Division and fourth-bottom team in the First Division

Play-offs to involve only the third- to sixth-placed teams in Second Division

First Division increased to 22 clubs

Breakaway Premier League formed

Italy: Serie A Preview

Inter travel to Catania, Roma host Reggina, Juventus travel to Udinese and Milan host Siena...


England: Premier League Previews

The Manchester Derby and Liverpool's trip to Chelsea highlight another critical weekend of fixtures in the EPL...

Fasteddy's Tips
Manchester Unites for Derby Day

Liverpool's Trauma: Life In United's Shadow

Nigel Smith looks at how the tables have turned in the North West, where Liverpool are left trying to match the standards being set by Manchester United.

Spain: La Liga Weekend Preview

Barcelona's trip to Sevilla tops the fixture list, while Real host Valladolid...

Saturday 9 February 2008 (all times local)
20:00 Real Murcia - Villarreal
20:00 Deportivo - Getafe
22:00 Sevilla - Barcelona

Sunday 10 February
17:00 Osasuna - Zaragoza
17:00 Athletic - Levante
17:00 Racing - Atletico Madrid
17:00 Mallorca - Almeria
17:00 Espanyol - Recreativo
19:00 Real Madrid - Valladolid
21:00 Valencia - Betis

MLS Releases 2008 Schedule

And they once again ignore international fixture dates

The Los Angeles Galaxy, whose top stars are David Beckham and Landon Donovan, host the Chicago Fire on Aug. 21, the day after the United States is likely to play its opening semifinal-round qualifier, likely at Guatemala. England probably will have an exhibition.

Uli Hesse-Lichtenberger in Germany

Uli's had enough of Germany's winter break...

Time to end Bundesliga hibernation

African Cup of Nations Update

Egypt 4 - 1 Ivory Coast
Egypt Shock Ivory Coast In Five-Goal Thriller

Cameroon 1 - 0 Ghana
Hosts Out After Cameroon Snatch Win

Team of the Tournament

Andrew Hush: Cameroon revival as favourites fall

The Pharaohs thank God for letting them score a goal...

Thursday, February 07, 2008

The Insider at Wembley

England 2 - 1 Switzerland
Capello off to a winning start

It was just like this yesterday...

African Cup of Nations: Semi-Final Previews

Ivory Coast vs. Egypt

Ghana vs. Cameroon
What: Africa Cup of Nations Semi Final One
Who: Ghana v Cameroon
When: 7 February 2008, 17:00 GMT (18:00 CET)
Where: Ohene Djan Stadium, Accra

How lucky is Greg Lalas?

Sid Lowe: Spain suffer as ringmaster Aragonés whips up a soccer circus

If the ridiculous maelstrom that surrounds Luis Aragonés doesn't end soon, even victories like last night's won't help to improve Spain's situation.

European Friendlies

Ireland 0 - 1 Brazil
Classy Brazil Edge Plucky Ireland

Italy 3 - 1 Portugal

Luca Toni, Andrea Pirlo and Fabio Quagliarella scored the goals as an impressive Italy beat Portugal 3-1 in a highly entertaining and open friendly at the Letzigrund Stadium in Zurich.

Spain 1 - 0 France
Joan Capdevila was the unlikely hero for Spain as he scored the only goal of a very tight friendly encounter to give Spain an historic victory in Málaga.

England 2 - 1 Switzerland

Tame England leave Capello with more questions than answers

England: Premier League News

Liverpool owners and manager are urged to cease conflict as chief executive targets return to winning ways
Rick Parry calls for end to Liverpool hostilities
Fernando Torres is confident of being fit for Liverpool's weekend trip to Chelsea, despite injuring his thigh
Torres plays down injury fears
After a morale-boosting performance for England Under-21, the Arsenal youngster is all too aware of his shortcomings
Theo Walcott wants regular Arsenal place
The Brazil forward has not played for more than a month but is keen to show Middlesbrough fans what all the fuss is about
Alves anxious to put on scoring boots
The Arsenal manager attacks internatiuonal friendlies for the 1001st time, this time over an injury to his midfield enforcer
Flamini injury angers Wenger

African Cup of Nations Update

The Ivory Coast, with a Chelsea-loving Drogba, and Ghana are the teams to beat as the competition reaches the semi-finals.
Drogba and Essien have key roles as big four play for final honour
Didier Drogba loves the challenge at Chelsea
Samuel Eto'o threat forces Ghana to reshuffle

USA 2 - 2 Mexico

All in all, another entertaining match-up between the region's powerhouses. Too bad Dempsey's goal was waved off. Regardless, Mexico failed to win, and that makes me quite pleased.

Oguchi Onyewu and Jozy Altidore provided the goals for the hosts, while Jonny Magallon notched both of the goals on set pieces for Mexico.

Jen Chang's Take

Player Ratings

Martin Rogers on Jozy Altidore

Lo siento, Hugo. Suerte por la proxima...

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Look Alikes of the Week: Phil Hartman's Frankenstein & Fabio Capello

Fire, BAAAD!!

Michael Owen, WORSE!

Hleb stays, Benjani moves

Arsenal midfielder Alexander Hleb has no intention of leaving the club in the summer, according to the player's agent, but Benjani, having woken up from his little airport nap, is finally moving up north.
Alexander Hleb to stay at Arsenal
Benjani completes move to Manchester City

Irish still seek manager

The Republic of Ireland set-up must rediscover the unity that led to success in 1990 before managerial farce tempts more players to retire
A green mist descends as Ireland's wait goes on

Trezeguet not good enough for Domenech

Sacré bleu! The new France away kit is red.

Ahead of France's friendly in Spain, David Trezeguet has become the latest player to fall foul of Raymond Domenech's peculiar policies, explains Monsieur Lyttleton.
'Provocateur' Domenech opens his black book again

USA vs. Mexico -- It's never friendly...

Whenever the U.S. team plays Mexico I get excited. This game is never boring and always seems to bring out the best in both squads. And no matter how pro-Mexico the crowd is, if it's being played on U.S. soil, the Yanks usually end up taking the match. It'll be another tough test for them tonight. I just wish it weren't on so late. 9 pm is past my bedtime! Waaa.

USA vs. Mexico Reliant Stadium Houston, Texas

What's not to love??

The American that Mexico Loves to Hate

Love Thy Neighbor

U.S. Brings Its A-Team

Glimpse of USA-Mexico rivalry's future

European Friendlies: Capello makes his bow while Euro 2008 hopefuls start tune-up

As Euro 2008 hopefuls get down to the serious business of fine-tuning their squad permutations for the summer England must embark instead on the long road to the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa under new Italian coach Fabio Capello.

Also, France face Spain in Malaga and Italy host Portugal.

Spanish Debate: Is The Rich-Poor Gulf Wider Than Ever?

Real Madrid and Barcelona

Is the gap between the Big Two and the rest now too wide to bridge?

Calcio Debate: Kaka & Pato Out - Milan In Big Trouble?

With Kaka and Alexandre Pato seemingly set to miss Milan’s monster Champions League clash with Arsenal a fortnight today, Carlo Garganese is concerned that the European Champions could be in big trouble…

Manchester United: Munich Remembered

Manchester United's tribute to the eight footballers lost in the Munich air disaster 50 years ago will be one of permanence. This afternoon's service, in the Manchester Suite at the ground, will be conducted by club chaplain Reverend John Boyers to coincide with the time of crash at 3.04pm.

Sir Alex fears Munich tribute will be targeted by 'idiots' and be remembered for the wrong reasons

Phil Holland on the Busby Babes

Picture Gallery

Richard Williams Remembers

Facts About the Crash

African Cup of Nations: Favourites on course for Accra collision

The dream final is still on in the African Cup of Nations after Ghana and Ivory Coast successfully negotiated quarter-finals with performances at the opposite ends of the comfort extreme.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Tim Vickery in South America

Republic of Ireland fans are in for a treat this week when Brazil come to town; and the fact that Dunga's squad is not at full strength only adds interest to Wednesday's match.

Quotes and Chants of the Week

"Fight! Fight! Fight! Fight!"
Newcastle fans when Nicklas Bendtner came on for Arsenal, joining Emmanuel Adebayor on the pitch, a week after their on-field tussle.

"There's only one Kevin Keegan!"
Arsenal fans when they went 3-0 up.

"I was full of it, I wanted to cuddle everyone I could see!"
Fulham's Jimmy Bullard on hugging the ref after hitting the winner against Aston Villa with a cracking free-kick.

All the Fun

Inter's rivals to blame for one-horse race

Roma's Tuscan travel-sickness and Milan's transfer market negligence have all but handed the Scudetto to Inter.

Bochum beat Bremen

The "unrelegatables" had not won at Bremen in 29 attempts before the referee gave them a helping hand on Sunday, writes Herr Honigstein
Bochum finally end 37 years of hurt

Sid highlights Almería manager Emery

He might be anonymous for now, but if Unai Emery continues to perform masterstrokes like Almería's win over Madrid, he won't be much longer, writes señor Sid Lowe
Almería's miracle-working pesado masterminds another Real upset

Sir Jimmy Bullard

He's certainly a nicer bloke...
Bullard: better than Gerrard & Lampard?

English Premier League: The Race For Europe

While the majority of the headlines about the Barclays Premiership seem to revolve around the tight, three-way battle for the Premiership crown between Arsenal, Manchester United, and Chelsea, an equally intriguing fight is ensuing right behind them.

Matt Monaghan looks at the Premiership challengers' prospects of European football...

Friedel Extends Blackburn Contract

The American was out of contract at the end of next season, but he will now remain at Ewood Park until summer 2010, marking a decade at the club.

ACN: Egypt and Cameroon Reach Semis

Stephane M'Bia and Cameroon needed extra time to beat Tunisia 3-2 Monday and reach the semifinals at the African Cup of Nations. Defending champion Egypt also advanced, beating Angola 2-1 to complete the final four. Cameroon will face host Ghana and Egypt takes on Ivory Coast in Thursday's semis.

Easily Cameroon's #1 fan. Does sell those diaper-shorts?

1991 Marked the Turning Point for the U.S.

While victory in Mexico has continued to be elusive, the U.S. has proved to be almost as tough on its side of the border, in spite of some decidedly unfriendly crowds.

And if there was one match that signaled the U.S.'s transformation from doormat to rival, it would be its 2-0 victory in the semifinals of the 1991 CONCACAF Gold Cup.

Phil Ball in Spain

Señor Ball thanks Almería's midfield for keeping the title race alive...

Cut out the middle-men

Monday, February 04, 2008

African Cup of Nations Update

Ghana 2 - 1 Nigeria
Super Eagles Deplumed

Ivory Coast 5 - 0 Guinea
Elephants Cruise

Americans in England USA's Matthew Braine runs down the happenings of the American players in England this past week.

Brian McBride, Fulham
vs. Aston Villa (20 minutes, 0 goals)

McBride made his return on Sunday against Aston Villa and was in the side that climbed back to steal a win at home. In his first action since August 2007, McBride and the Cottagers got two goals within 13 minutes. And while the striker didn’t have too much to do with either of them, it was encouraging to see the captain back on the field. It will be interesting to see if Roy Hodgson decides to bring him off the bench at first, but odds are that he will start considering that Fulham’s top flight lives are at stake for the remainder of the season.

Italy: Serie A Weekend Wrap

Roma and Juventus losing hope of catching Inter

Serie A
Inter Milan2116055331
AC Milan209563316
Catania Calcio2158823-5

Spain: La Liga Weekend Wrap

The gap narrows as Madrid fall to Almeria and Barcelona snatch a late win...

Primera División
Real Madrid2217325328
Atlético Madrid2211653813
Racing Santander22967340
FC Sevilla22101023211

England: EPL Weekend Action

Team of the Week
Jussi Jaaskelainen
Alan Hutton
Jonathan Woodgate
David Wheater
Bacary Sagna
Kevin Nolan
Lassana Diarra
Jimmy Bullard
Joe Cole
Jermain Defoe
Emmanuel Adebayor

The Good, The Bad And The Ugly

Fulham 2 - 1 Aston Villa
Bullard Dream Return

Manchester City 1 - 3 Arsenal
Arsenal So Superior

Blackburn 0 - 0 Everton
Referee Errors Cost Everton

Wigan 1 - 0 West Ham

Wigan En Route to Safety

Newcastle 1 - 1 Middlesbrough

Michael Owen Scores a Goal

Portsmouth 1 - 1 Chelsea
Defoe on Target

Premier League Table
February 3, 2008GPPT
Man Utd2558
Aston Villa2541
Man City2541
West Ham2436

United Fined For White Hart Lane Indiscipline

Manchester United have been fined by the FA after seven players were booked in the draw at Tottenham.

The Insider at White Hart Lane

Tottenham 1 - 1 Manchester United
Ronaldo fluffs his lines as Spurs' backbone shows

Richard Jolly at Anfield

Liverpool 3 - 0 Sunderland
Benitez winning Anfield popularity contest

Bradley brings in 12 Europe-based players for Mexico

After meeting Mexico, the Americans likely will play at Poland on March 26 and at Spain on June 4 before the start of World Cup qualifying in mid-June.

Goalkeepers: Brad Guzan (Chivas USA), Tim Howard (Everton, England)

Defenders: Carlos Bocanegra (Fulham, England), Ramiro Corrales (Brann, Norway), Drew Moor (Dallas), Oguchi Onyewu (Standard Liege, Belgium), Michael Parkhurst (New England), Heath Pearce (Hansa Rostock, Germany), Eddie Robinson (Houston)

Midfielders: Freddy Adu (Benfica, Portugal), Michael Bradley (Heerenveen, Netherlands), Ricardo Clark (Houston), Bobby Convey (Reading, England), Brad Davis (Houston), Maurice Edu (Toronto), Benny Feilhaber (Derby, England), Stuart Holden (Houston), Eddie Lewis (Derby, England)

Forwards: Jozy Altidore (New York), Clint Dempsey (Fulham, England), Landon Donovan (Los Angeles), Pat Noonan (Aalesund, Norway)