Bielsa’s sportsmanlike call was commendable, but it’s all avoided if teams play to the whistle

Bielsa’s sportsmanlike call was commendable, but it’s all avoided if teams play to the whistle

Play to the whistle. It’s one of the most common phrases uttered in most young footballers’ careers, but rarely does it have so much relevance as in Leeds United’s 1-1 draw with Aston Villa at the weekend.

After Jonathan Kodjia went down under an innocuous-looking coming together with Leeds defender Liam Cooper, Aston Villa looked to their opponents to put the ball out of play.

However, they didn’t.

Continue reading “Bielsa’s sportsmanlike call was commendable, but it’s all avoided if teams play to the whistle”

Why Neil Etheridge should be high on teams’ summer shopping list should Cardiff be relegated

Why Neil Etheridge should be high on teams’ summer shopping list should Cardiff be relegated

At football’s highest levels, earning results often comes down to the smallest margins. For the man positioned between the sticks, these microscopic details hold the most significance, and is why recruiting well in the goalkeeping position can be make or break for a side.

In crucial relegation battles, or equally in avoiding being dragged into such late season scraps, a top quality shotstopper can be the deciding factor.

Therefore a premium exists for a good goalkeeper and clubs looking to strengthen that area must box smart.

Continue reading “Why Neil Etheridge should be high on teams’ summer shopping list should Cardiff be relegated”

The sorry state of Gateshead FC; Staff and players set to strike over club sale

The sorry state of Gateshead FC; Staff and players set to strike over club sale

It seems every day that another club, both in the Football League and just below, seems to be embroiled in financial troubles. For Tyneside club, Gateshead FC, it’s started to become a nightmare right as times looked to be on the up.

The National League side, who currently sit ninth in the table and are just outside the playoff positions, have been wrought by financial woes all season.

Despite having only been taken over by Dr Ranjan Varghese in July 2018, financial issues have seen the Tynesiders operate under a transfer embargo for the vast majority of the Hong Kong-based businessman’s tenure.

Continue reading “The sorry state of Gateshead FC; Staff and players set to strike over club sale”

Seeing Red; Why Alfredo Morelos’ poor discipline is a real problem Rangers have to consider

Seeing Red; Why Alfredo Morelos’ poor discipline is a real problem Rangers have to consider

Some players have real issues with discipline; that’s nothing new in football. However, to be sent off five times in a single season should surely prompt your club to re-evaluate your role in the team, shouldn’t it?

Well, after a heated Old Firm derby at the weekend, that is the exact situation Rangers find themselves in with striker Alfredo Morelos.

The talented Colombian is a truly prolific striker for Steven Gerrard’s side. Since joining the Scottish side in June 2017, he has netted 47 times in 87 games. A total of 29 of those goals have come in this season alone.

Continue reading “Seeing Red; Why Alfredo Morelos’ poor discipline is a real problem Rangers have to consider”

Where did it all go wrong for Huddersfield Town this season?

Where did it all go wrong for Huddersfield Town this season?

As the full time whistle blew at Selhurst Park, with Crystal Palace winning 1-0 and results elsewhere going against them, Huddersfield Town knew that nothing but an injury time Brighton goal against Southampton would save them. It didn’t come, and they became the first side relegated from the Premier League this season.

In truth, the result was already known weeks ago. It was a matter of when, not if, Huddersfield went down.

In the end, Jan Siewert’s men went down after 32 games, equalling an unwanted record with Derby County as the earliest gameweek a side has been relegated from the Premier League.

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Why Guangzhou Evergrande’s decision to suspend Wei Shihao for a bad tackle is utter madness

Why Guangzhou Evergrande’s decision to suspend Wei Shihao for a bad tackle is utter madness

Nobody likes to see a player suffer a serious injury, and especially not through a rash tackle from an opponent. While aggression and competitiveness are key elements of the modern game, there are times when players can get a rush of blood and cross the line.

Chinese international Wei Shihao was guilty of just such an incident during the most recent international break when during the first half of a 1-0 defeat to Uzbekistan in the China Cup, he scythed down opponent Otabek Shukurov with a rash challenge.

Continue reading “Why Guangzhou Evergrande’s decision to suspend Wei Shihao for a bad tackle is utter madness”

With Perez hinting at a move away and Rondon’s future still uncertain, Newcastle could be back to square one next season

With Perez hinting at a move away and Rondon’s future still uncertain, Newcastle could be back to square one next season

Since the signing of Miguel Almiron, Newcastle have improved massively on what has been their biggest glaring issue in the past few seasons; attack. Together with Ayoze Perez and Salomon Rondon, they’ve brought life back to the black and white attack – but that may not be the case for much longer.

Rondon joined Newcastle as a loan signing from West Brom and, after a shaky first few games, has become the physical, out-and-out number nine that the Magpies have been crying out for in recent times.

Continue reading “With Perez hinting at a move away and Rondon’s future still uncertain, Newcastle could be back to square one next season”