Danny's Football Bluff

October 28, 2013

October 28th 2013

People say that when a club is bought out by a billionaire it loses its soul. This myth was absolutely busted last night when the two richest clubs in England played last night. Chelsea v Manchester City, Russian billionaires v Arab billionaires. Or if you will James Bond villains v Jack Ryan villains. These two clubs are hated by football purists by buying their success, however last night they showed how friendly they can be, with Chelsea making it easier for their opponents by only having shots on goal from offside positions. Manchester City were not to be outdone though, and thought it only fair that their goalkeeper Joe Hart should run halfway across the field so Fernando Torres could score the winner in injury time. What great sports. Chelsea 2-1 Manchester City

The weekend’s big game in Australia was the Sydney derby, played to a packed house on Saturday night. Sydney FC showing the great defensive acumen that manager Frank Farina is known for, as their centre backs stood completely still for Shinji Ono to score the opener. It brought back great memories of when Farina lead the Socceroos to an inspiring 3-0 thumping by Uruguay to end our World Cup dreams. Sydney FC 0-2 Western Sydney Wanderers

It wasn’t the only big derby played over the weekend, Sunderland beat Newcastle in a victory for animal rights everywhere. Last time these two rivals played the big story was an angry Newcastle fan punched a horse in the face. Reports that after this 2-1 defeat some ducks were molested have gone unconfirmed…

The Glasgow Derby used to be one of the biggest matches on the football calendar. However since the death of Rangers FC in 2012 there hasn’t been one, until last night, and it was a classic. A lot of people didn’t think that Celtic v Partick Thistle would reach the heights of the old Celtic v Rangers matches but they were wrong! Celtic triumphed 2-1 in an epic battle for bragging rights! Firhill Stadium’s home support was silenced by Amido Balde’s 75th minute strike. Although that was because one of the home support had gone to the toilet but the other five were pretty gobsmacked.

Goal of the week is the winner from the El Clasico on Saturday night. I was trying to write about this match but really it was too good to make jokes about. I love these matches. Apologies about the quality of the video, any decent ones are geoblocked or some other computer term I don’t understand.

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October 21, 2013

October 21st, 2013

This weekend in the world of round ball was not one where people celebrated greatness; instead enduring horror was the order of the day. The best you could hope for this weekend was that your preferred teams didn’t royally stuff up or have stuff ups thrust upon them. Like when Quentin Tarantino acts in one of his own films, you just cross your fingers it won’t be too bad and hope it’ll all be over soon.

So who stuffed up the worst? Here we go with my…

Top Five Worst performances of the weekend!

5. Manchester United only manage a draw with a plucky Southampton. This has been United’s worst start to a season in living memory and of course the fans are turning on new manager David Moyes. This is a bit unfair as any new manager takes time to bed in and all the smaller clubs reckon they can beat the Red Devils at the moment so they play their hearts out.

4. Juventus coughed up a 2-0 lead to lose 4-2 against Fiorentina. The referees had done their part gifting Juve a penalty in the first half but it seems the bribery money had run out as Giuseppe Rossi slammed in a hat trick to record a famous win. I’d hate to be a racehorse in Turin tonight.

3. On Friday night traditional rivals Adelaide United and Melbourne Victory played the SBS showcase match. The third worst performance of the weekend goes to the referees! Adelaide were given a penalty that wasn’t there, then Jeronimo Neuman [who is one of the few players to always be called by his full name] scored from an offside position, then Victory scored a goal that was incorrectly given as offside. Socceroo manager apparent Ange Postecoglou was so angry he looked like he was going to punch someone. Sadly he didn’t, which is annoying because if he did, he might have not got the Socceroos job and Victory could keep our wondercoach.

2. Second worst performance of the weekend goes to Sydney FC. It must be exhausting being an FC fan, just over a week ago, they beat Newcastle 2-0 and they were apparently “throwing down a gauntlet for the rest of the league” this week, after they lost to Brisbane 2-0 they are “destined to be cellar dwellers for a long time”. The Hyperbole is without doubt the worst Hyperbole in the known universe. It would have got my worst performance of the week but that goes to…

1. Setanta!! The Specialty Sports channel which certain fans of certain leagues have to get in order to see their heroes. As a Celtic fan I am one of them, and already this year my chances of seeing the Hoops have been slashed drastically as some dickhead over at Setanta thinks more people want to watch Ipswich vs Doncaster than Celtic [who are reportedly the second most supported British team in Australia*]. So although Setanta did play Hibernian v Celtic on Saturday night, as of midday on Monday [36 hours after the match], Setanta are still yet to put the match online for those who couldn’t watch it live. Despite their website saying all matches will be available on Setanta Sports Plus Catch Up between 3 and 6 hours after match completion.
Can you imagine any other service provider getting away with such blatantly awful service? Apart from Banks, Airlines, Public Transport and mobile phone providers the answer is … still probably!

*Source – The Department of Celtic Biased Statistics, c/o The Pint on Punt, St Kilda.

Goal of the Week from the Irish ladies league.

October 14, 2013

October 14th

It was indeed a big weekend in Australian round ball events. It all kicked off on Saturday morning with France spanking the Socceroos 6-0. Now to defend our performance – let’s not forget France are one of the best teams in the world, and they have been underperforming so they were fired up. However, we were shithouse. Double Fronted McMansion in the heart of Caroline Springs shithouse. So we sacked Holger Osieck. It’s a shame, I liked Holger but the results had been a bit rubbish recently. We’re in a bad spot as a national team at the moment, our “Golden Generation” are all a bit too old but no kids are really stepping up to the plate either. So who is our next coach? According to rumours… it could be:

Guus Hiddink – The first answer all the amateur pundits gave. Mostly because, they don’t know anyone else. I don’t think it’ll happen, Guus is quite astute at choosing which teams he manages; he either chooses teams of great potential who will add to his mystical pathos or he chooses teams that will add to his bank balance. I don’t think the current Socceroos can do either of those.

Marcelo Bielsa – The Argentinean they call “El Loco” would be an ideal choice for the Australian media as he sort of looks like Holger Osieck so they could just re-use old photos. He’s a genuine personality so if he’s successful then Mad Marcelo’s Men become engrained in Australian Football history, and if he fails then at least he’ll implode in a way that leaves no survivors, which ultimately could be a good thing.

Robert Di Matteo – Won the Champions League with Chelsea two years back. He’s a frustrating manager: can be amazing, can be awful. Could be worth a punt but I can’t see him succeeding.

Graham Arnold – There’s a lot of calls for a local to be the coach. How the shopkeepers from The League of Gentlemen managed to become football pundits in this country I’ll never know. Graham Arnold has a brilliant knowledge of the way Australians play and has proven himself as a fantastic tactician during his time with the Central Coast Mariners. However when he managed the Socceroos in 2007 one thing was blatantly obvious – our national players don’t respect a local coach.

Ange Postecoglou – arguably the greatest manager the country has ever produced, but as a Victory fan I have to say BACK OFF!!! HE’S OURS!!

In other news the A-League began this week. This blogger took in the Melbourne Derby on Saturday night. It’s a really stupid idea putting the Derby in round one as teams are always dusty in the first game of the season. With Heart and Victory there are always big bragging rights at stake so both teams were more interested in not losing than they were in winning. A sell out crowd of over 45,000 people witnessed a very dull match. Hopefully some of them will come back sometime, but I wouldn’t hold my breath. You know a match is boring when the highlight was the ground announcer.

Goal of the Week

October 7, 2013

October 7th, 2013

Filed under: Weekly Wraps — dannymcginlay @ 11:14 am

The A-League begins this week!!! It’s a very exciting time for all. I for one am chomping at the bit for the Melbourne Derby this Saturday night at Docklands. I’m so excited I am already picturing all the different ways I am going to sulk if Heart pull off an upset!

Western Sydney Wanderers
Good – Kept all their great league winning players.
Bad – Not the new kids anymore, are now a target.

Central Coast Mariners
Good – Gained Marcos Flores and Matt Simon.
Bad – Lost Mathew Ryan, Bernie Ibini-Isei and Patrick Zwaanswijk and possibly Danny McBreen.

Melbourne Victory
Good – Gained some experienced strikers and a marquee defender, still got Postecoglou.
Bad – Midfield have a combined age of 14.

Adelaide United
Good – New coach Josep Gombau has promised to make them the Barcelona of the A-League.
Bad – Coaches invariably talk shit.

Brisbane Roar
Good – Regained some old favourite players.
Bad – That includes Matt McKay.

Perth Glory
Good – New coach has brought in a wealth of young talent.
Bad – This includes his two sons… not a joke.

Sydney FC
Good – Did a preseason tour of Italy, making much needed money for the club.
Bad – All of that money would have gone to Alessandro Del Piero and his fantastic collection of ivory back scratchers.

Newcastle Jets
Good – Retained goal scoring machine Emile Heskie.
Bad – Still owned by Nathan Tinkler, who is like Clive Palmer but with the money running out… so Bob Katter.

Melbourne Heart
Good – Signed Harry Kewell and fantastic Dutchman Orlando Engelaar.
Bad – Kewell hasn’t played football in 18 months and Engelaar has broken his leg.

Wellington Phoenix
Good – New coach Ernie Merrick has A-League winning experience, and he’s brought in Carlos Hernandez!
Bad – By the end of Merrick’s tenure at Melbourne Victory it was obvious he didn’t realize coaching tactics are supposed to be plural.

So who do I think will win the A-League? Well the Wanderers are an impressive outfit, but I just feel that this season will belong to Melbourne Victory. With the form they’ve been I just can’t see them dropping a single match. Sure that form was done on the playstation set to easy but with the oval ball finals on that was the only soccer coverage I could get.

This week’s best goal is also the worst camera work.

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