2010/11 Soccer Thread - Hitting The Home Stretch

UCRC wrote:

Martin Jol is a new Fulham manager. Good choice, although they could have gone for Sven. He's a pro, not some journeyman like Jol who looks for highest bidder.

You are joking, right ? He got caught in a newspaper sting about jumping ship from the England job for more money, and his career since has been a merry-go-round of lucrative failures.

Still, Jol is right up there. Quite why anyone would leave Ajax for a down at heel Premiership club is beyond me, although it's been rumoured that Ajax's finances aren't all that. All this guff about 'unfinished business' is just that - he wants to use Fulham as a stepping stone for other jobs.

Liverpool sign Joe Cole on a 4 year deal, according to the BBC.

Bit of a surprise, I presumed Twitcher had sorted that one with some strategically applied bungs. All of which means that he's either

(a) Confused part of a club's transfer kitty with his own bank account again (as he did at Portsmouth, according to HMRC) or

(b) Is convinced that he's buying Craig Bellamy from City. Because City will be mad keen to sell players to one of their up and coming rivals, naturally. And at the price he's expecting to pay. So cue the usual mantra of "he's a triffic triffic player but I don't know whether we can match their valuation, or pay him what they're paying him..".

As for Joe Cole, the chance of him doing 4 years up in the frozen North is.....zero.

davet010 wrote:

You are joking, right ?

Right.

While i'm thrilled to have Jol take control, I can't reasonably see anyone leaving Ajax for Fulham for any reason that doesn't involve the letters "m-o-n-e-y". I mean, I love the club, and last year was a blast even though we lost the Europa League final, but Momo must've waved a ton of cash under his nose for this gag.

Actually, I think I might've preferred to see Bob Bradley get the job.

Nay, Jol is the best guy you could find. Actual Premier League experience is worth much more than success at international level. That's why everyone gets linked to Slaven Bilić but no one actually wants to contract him.

Fiver Letters wrote:

"May I be the first pedant to point out that the reason for Thierry Henry's move to the United States is that he deparately wants to live in a place where they cheer people for playing football with their hands" - John Lynch (and 1,057 others).

Great Laughs of Our Time - Summer 2010 edition

1. Sir Alex of the Purple Nose - "I'm happy with our summer transfer activity and fans should not expect any more signings". Hmm, first team average age 31, full of perma-crocks and you've signed.....some teenage Mexican striker who it is rumoured will go out on loan in 2010/11, and some hapless CH from Fulham who's played less than 10 games and was left flat on his arse twice by Tevez when City did Fulham last year. Way to go, mate.

2. Liverpool secure future services of Steven Gerrard. Well, at first sight this seems like the answer to a Scouser's prayer. But let us investigate a little.

- So WHO ELSE was in the market ? RM rejected him over concerns about the €30m fee and his age, City and Barca have never expressed any interest, and Chelsea haven't been chasing him. So, that'll be no one else in the market then. Well done Liverpool - what with the addition of Joe '15 games a season' Cole, you'll be right there in the middle of that chase for a Europa League spot again.

Martin Jol falls through, now Fulham's being linked with Svennis.

Loathable as he is, I still don't think the man's an awful coach. Hell, he's clearly the most successful England manager of the past two decades. We could do worse, assuming he'll only hang around for a year (if that).

Fulham better have some money to spend if you get Sven. I hope he does, he could buy Jo from City, after all it was his idea.

Tangentially, I just watched the IT Crowd episode where Roy and Moss use the football phrasebook website. Genius!

Well, I for one am ready for the latest West Ham Experiment. At this point, its quite funny to watch this team implode one year and explode the next.

Also, I'm kinda sad that the MLS is winding down. I catch 4-5 FC Dallas games a year and they're always a blast, good crowd, nice facilities, and on the cheap. Their play has gone down over the years (Dallas anyway) but to be honest, I might make the argument that any MLS team could be competitive over in the Scottish Prem league. Ah, August, you're such a bitch. On one hand, I have to return to work teaching little darlings reading; on the other, soccer starts back up happily enough.

I caught Henry's debut vs. Spurs and I don't understand why he is in MLS. He's too good still.

maxox wrote:

I caught Henry's debut vs. Spurs and I don't understand why he is in MLS. He's too good still.

It did confuse me a bit. I mean, the guy's not good enough for the elite European teams anymore, but he could still certainly find a job at the 2nd or 3rd tier ones. I'm thrilled to see him here, but Sean Wheelock made a really good point about his arrival during the World Football Phone-In on BBC 5 recently, namely that the big challenge for him isn't going to necessarily going to be about the quality of play or the structure of the league, it's going to be about going from playing infront of 60,000+ across Spain and Europe, to (probably) playing infront of 5-9,000 sometime next year in Kansas City or San Jose. That's the real test of a lot of these European merc's professionalism I think. They all say they want to get away from the paparazzi and the limelight, but to have it totally removed... it didn't work for Lothar Mattheus. We'll see if Thierry can put up with it.

Sidenote: BBC world football phone-in = really good.

Prederick wrote:
maxox wrote:

I caught Henry's debut vs. Spurs and I don't understand why he is in MLS. He's too good still.

It did confuse me a bit. I mean, the guy's not good enough for the elite European teams anymore, but he could still certainly find a job at the 2nd or 3rd tier ones. I'm thrilled to see him here, but Sean Wheelock made a really good point about his arrival during the World Football Phone-In on BBC 5 recently, namely that the big challenge for him isn't going to necessarily going to be about the quality of play or the structure of the league, it's going to be about going from playing infront of 60,000+ across Spain and Europe, to (probably) playing infront of 5-9,000 sometime next year in Kansas City or San Jose. That's the real test of a lot of these European merc's professionalism I think. They all say they want to get away from the paparazzi and the limelight, but to have it totally removed... it didn't work for Lothar Mattheus. We'll see if Thierry can put up with it.

If you play in La Liga or the Copa del Rey, you will, in fact, play in front of crowds of about that size or less every season.

Just a small recommendation (and apologies if it was mentioned already): http://www.footballfilter.com/

Due to the nature of the sources, many of the news items are related to the Premiere League, but it's a very handy webseite nevertheless. Plus, they keep adding new sources.

And, rather than being in the black....Barcelona are massively in the red.

Go on then, Blatter - get your snout out of the trough and your hand out of Platini's backside long enough to make a pronouncement on this. I DARE you.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/europe/8859257.stm

Always knew the skeletons would be tipping out of the closet once Juan Laporta left.

Looks like they're still willing to add more to the debt.

I didn't even realize Chivas USA's Sacha Kljestan had joined RSC Anderlecht until I happened to catch some of yesterday's CL scores.

IMAGE(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4083/4838949271_5c7a82f2e6.jpg)

Still sporting the pedo-mustache, eh Sacha? At least it's not as bad as last year's patently terrifying FIFA 10 cover.

Jesus, they still don't get the message:

arseblog wrote:

Apparently a load of the Barcelona officials have taken, or will take, a plane to London today (Easyjet, I hope, don't want to weaken the finances any further, chaps) to talk to Arsenal. I hope we sit them down in a conference room and every time they try and say something Ivan Gazidis makes a noise like a startled giraffe with a sore throat. And keeps doing it until they go away.

Or better yet, he takes their financial results and when they try to mention Cesc, he grabs them by collars, rubs it against their noses and shouts "BAD Catalan! Buy your players outside!".
That's how I did it when something tried to sh*t on my floor and kept waving it's tail in 'let's go out and play' manner. Which is exactly what Barca is doing in regards to this transfer.

Yesterday, there were some games to qualify to the Champion's League. My hometown team beat Celtic 3 nil. Nice, very nice.

Mark Hughes.

Eh, we could do worse. We could also get relegated.

UCRC wrote:

Jesus, they still don't get the message:

arseblog wrote:

Apparently a load of the Barcelona officials have taken, or will take, a plane to London today (Easyjet, I hope, don't want to weaken the finances any further, chaps) to talk to Arsenal. I hope we sit them down in a conference room and every time they try and say something Ivan Gazidis makes a noise like a startled giraffe with a sore throat. And keeps doing it until they go away.

Or better yet, he takes their financial results and when they try to mention Cesc, he grabs them by collars, rubs it against their noses and shouts "BAD Catalan! Buy your players outside!".
That's how I did it when something tried to sh*t on my floor and kept waving it's tail in 'let's go out and play' manner. Which is exactly what Barca is doing in regards to this transfer.

Thing is, he really does want to go - and would probably do so if there was a pay cut involved. However, from a playing point of view, he'd have to understand that he was the #3 midfielder at best, and would be swapped in and out. It would be nice if he would agree to see out his contract and then go, but I'm guessing that he believes that there is only a limited window before Barca buy another midfielder.

Prederick wrote:

Mark Hughes.

Eh, we could do worse. We could also get relegated.

Hopefully Sparky last long enough to buy all of the crap he bought for City - and yes, Roque Santa Cruz, I'm looking at you.

Tell you what, buy Bellamy, Ireland and Onuoha for £20m and we'll throw in a free Santa Cruz. That should keep you up.

Relegation this year ? - Blackpool (absolutely nailed on, Holloway will crack by Feb), WBA and....Newcastle. Some deluded geordie was on a phone in today saying they'll be challenging for Europe. I wonder if anyone's shown him their squad ?

davet010 wrote:

Relegation this year ? - Blackpool (absolutely nailed on, Holloway will crack by Feb), WBA and....Newcastle. Some deluded geordie was on a phone in today saying they'll be challenging for Europe. I wonder if anyone's shown him their squad ?

:)

You're going to take all the hope out of me .

I can vaguely remember Newcastle being good. But then I can't talk too loudly, I'm a Liverpool fan.

And Raul moves to Schalke. Keep us updated on how slow he's moving, will you Spunior?

davet010 wrote:

Relegation this year ? - Blackpool (absolutely nailed on, Holloway will crack by Feb), WBA and....Newcastle. Some deluded geordie was on a phone in today saying they'll be challenging for Europe.

I dunno, usually at most two of the promoted teams go down, with a third with some Premier League tenure going with them. I think it'll all be W's this year, as Wolves, West Ham and West Brom all head back down.

Alternatively, Blackpool, West Ham and West Brom.

Oo, I'd love West Ham to go down, just to rid the world of them two porn-dealing spivs who took them over. Sullivan in particular seems to have a lot to say for himself, considering that his sole achievement is to have taken Birmingham precisely nowhere.

Thoughts on first (and only) serious pre-season game: next to two new signings squad looks stronger thanks to guys coming up through ranks and returning from injuries. Djourou and Gibbs missed last season, Wilshere was out on loan and Frimpong played in reserves, but he looked so good in last few games that Arsene is probably going to promote him to first squad. Those four guys should provide some cover when we get into another injury crisis.
We still need another defender, though, and of course we're on market for 'keeper. There's also talk about selling Denilson and bringing in other midfield player.