Tony Pulis vs The Premiership: reviewing the visit of the poncey foreign blueberries

A look at the weekend’s events from the perspective of the tracksuited one.

“WE ARE STOKE BOBOMB! ONE! TWO! THREE! FOUR!”

Arsenal. Arsenal. They’re no Valencia, are they?

I tell you, I was rubbing my hands with glee when I found out we’d have Arsenal so close to the start of the season. As were the fans, probably. Either rubbing their hands with glee, or shaking them around madly. Can’t always be certain which. He got his excuses in early as well, did the big French pudding, complaining that the grass was too long. I know! That man will whinge about anything. Continue reading

Advertisements

Three Observations: Audere Est Facere

Gurning, rather than football, was the real winner in Spurs vs. West Brom.

So another Tottenham Hotspur match has come and gone, and like so many before it and presumably like so many to come, it ended in disappointment. Nonetheless, there were some positives to be taken from the match, and so in a feature I’m hoping will be semi regular throughout the course of this season – here are Three Observations. Continue reading

Hazard impresses as Wigan fail to convert chances

McArthur and Hazard duke it out on the second day of the season.

As two of the teams chosen to concentrate on, the first Sunday of the PL season is a direct comparison to pair Wigan and Chelsea on. While Wigan have lost Rodallega to Fulham and the underrated Diame to West Ham on free transfers, they have so far kept manager Roberto Martinez and Victor Moses whilst adding to their squad of players with more low profile signings in Arouna Koné from Sevilla, defender Ivan Ramis from Mallorca, and Ryo Miyachi on loan from Arsenal. Chelsea could not be more different – losing club hero Didier Drogba to Shanghai Shenhua, aswell as Alex and Saloman Kalou. They have replaced with high-profile quality: Eden Hazard from Lille, the Brazilian Oscar, and Marko Marin.

The two teams are still connected of course, as Moses may still move to Chelsea as replacement for Drogba. Chelsea have had the best of encounters between the two in recent years, including an 8-0 victory to secure the Premiership in 2010..

Most league previews have put Chelsea into a Champions’ League place, and Wigan towards relegation – however, my thoughts on the matter were that Wigan would be safe in mid-table should they keep Moses and Martinez. Continue reading

Substance: Tricky Everton offer a solid test to a Fergie resurgence

Phil Neville: Everton's captain and an important influence in the dressing room if not so much on the pitch these days

Everton and Manchester United have enjoyed a fairly amicable, working relationship in recent years. Be it the cordial concurrence of the two team’s popular and long-serving Glaswegian managers, their recent trades in key player personnel and even their respective old boy figureheads in Phil Neville and Wayne Rooney, there exists a common ground between the two clubs beyond their mutual antipathy to the red faction of Liverpool.  Continue reading

This Is The One – Lining up for the Manchester Derby

Mind games, tactical decision and selection headaches - a duel between two title chasing managers

With Sunday’s derby fast approaching, questions abound over who will start, how they’ll play and what desires inform the tactical approach from the manager’s dugout. Dan and Greg look at how their respective teams may line-up on derby day.  Continue reading

Some Games Are Bigger Than Others: will the Manchester derby produce a match worthy of its billing or a safety first non-spectacle?

The stage is set, the previews are written and the weekend draws near. Sunday promises much with the season’s first proper instalment of the ‘Mancunian Classico’, but a question lingers over whether it can possibly deliver the game our exaggerated expectations demand. Compared to the fearsome sprint starts made by both City and United in the season’s opening weeks, the two teams have lost some of their early momentum and focus in recent games and for differing reasons.

A moment of brilliance could be all it takes to claim all three points this Sunday

There’s a sense over at the Etihad that, regardless of their current position at the top of the Premier League, Mancini isn’t entirely in control of his own players. The actions of Carlos Tevez, the self-perpetuating pantomime, may not be a valid stick with which to beat the Italian manager with, but Edin Dzeko’s recent regression and a reliance on individual genius to cover their still brittle, fair weather group harmony raises questions over his regime. Continue reading

Pretty Spurs to make waves? Greg asks a Tottenham fan about his team’s belated Premier League opener at Old Trafford and the season ahead!

The answers below were provided by friendly Tottenham Hotspur fan, Darryl Rolandson, who talked to Greg in the build up to Monday’s season opener at Old Trafford.

Spurs have won over the neutral with spats of carefree attacking play the likes of which could make Kevin Keegan flinch.

With your season opener against Everton called off, Spurs start their Premier League campaign with an away trip to Old Trafford. How are feeling about the season ahead?

You can’t argue that starting the season at Old Trafford is a bit of a nightmare, but there’s always hope. It would be nice to kick the season off with a win but a bad result first game doesn’t mean a bad season. On the whole I think we have a good shot this year, with morale low at the Emirates they seem to be gifting that 4th spot to someone else, so it’s just down to us to make sure Liverpool don’t buy there way back in. Then there’s always the Europa League to get us some nice silverwear and prove that even though it isn’t Champions League we still have the quality to perform on all fronts. Continue reading