QPR vs Manchester United: Complacency Would Lead To Disaster

Originally published online for Sabotage Times on February 23 2013.

The Premier League title may seem all but secured at this early stage, but dropped points today could let City right back in again…

We’ve all been there. You’re strolling down the street, taking the whole world in your stride as you strut about your daily business. The sun is shining and an attractive stranger smiles at you, distracting you from the laborious task of placing one foot in front of the other in steady succession. Mid-step, your toe catches the pavement and you’re sent flying into a world of scuffed knees, bruised egos and public humiliation, landing in a sprawled heap of physical pain and embarrassment.

QPR are that loose snag of ground; a trip hazard flagstone jutting out to sendManchester United stumbling on their rickety path to an unprecedented 20thleague title. A quick glance at the current standings suggests today’s encounter at Loftus Road should be little more than a formality – a landslide for the Premier League’s current summit versus a team sinking below sea level. However, United must stay mindful and watch their step. Over the past two seasons, Sir Alex’s side have slipped up to supposedly weaker opponents, losing 3-2 against Blackburn last year and 2-1 at Wolves in 2010/11.  Continue reading


Previewing the English Premier League season 2012/13 [2/3]

Read who’ll be challenging for the title and the Champions League in part 1.

If Spurs don’t make into the top four, Bale could lose heart.

7th place: Tottenham Hotspur

Would a seventh place finish without Luka Modric be a failure for Andreas Villas-Boas? It would certainly be a disappointment for Gareth Bale who could well leave Spurs next summer if this prediction is close to the truth.

Besides replacing their Croatian magician, Spurs need a striker and signing Adebayor on a permanent deal could be the key to Tottenham’s frontline and Man City’s continued transfer strategy. The signing of Gylfi Sigurdsson complicates matters in the midfield however, as his bursting runs forward may not be as effective without the patient trigger men behind him that he enjoyed at Swansea. There’s also the issue of Van Der Vaart’s own anarchic play style, which could see both attacking midfielders flying forwards when played together along with Bale and Lennon, leaving Spurs wide open. Parker and Sandro will have their work cut out to cover their team mates, and the Brazilian especially may find his box-to-box abilities repressed in favour of a more rigid, disciplined role. Continue reading

That joke isn’t funny anymore

I’m going to start this post off with a brief introduction to why football is the most important part of my life. It’s the reason I leave work until the last minute. It’s the reason why I was in tears on Saturday when we conceded against Bolton on Saturday in the FA Cup. It’s the reason I’ve been to such amazing places as Grimsby, Exeter, Coventry, Leicester, and London more times than for a social visit. It’s sitting in Wembley in 1996 for the FA Trophy final and proving you were the better of the Battle of Cheshire against Northwich Victoria. It’s sitting at Stamford Bridge and getting an equaliser against a team of Shevchenko, Lampard, and Terry amongst others. It’s winning 6-0 against Stockport. It’s sitting in Wetherspoon in my home town taking the piss out of Darren Gibson to annoy a Manchester United fan. It’s truly everything to me.

But now, I live in Scotland, the great white north, and a land of unbridled passion towards the game that I love, and a land where more people have asked me one question than at any time in my life:

“But who’s your premiership club?”  Continue reading

Football In A Coma – Is it time for fans to take back the game?

Something is brewing in the midlands. Over in Wolverhampton, a grass-roots campaign for change at the highest levels of football is growing in size and momentum. Disenfranchised fans from across the country are uniting to decide that now is the time to ‘Take Back The Game.’  Continue reading

I Started Something I Couldn’t Finish – redemption is found at home against Norwich but brilliant Basel throw a spanner in the works

From Benfica through to Chelsea and Stoke, United have been rather fortunate in terms of their opponents’ inabilities to take their chances over the past month of September. After score draws in both the league and Europe respectively, their game against Norwich was exaggerated into something of a ‘rot stopper’ for Ferguson’s men.

Rooney, coming back from his brief injury lay off, looked out of sorts against Norwich.

The shock 3-3 draw at home to FC Basel in the week meant that the chance to remain and regroup at Old Trafford for the weekend visit of a newly promoted team looked to be a generous and welcome luxury for the reds. Norwich’s visit, with no disrespect intended, was to be a chance for United to relax back into their ruthless, flamboyant swagger before what looks to be a truly grueling run of games: Liverpool, City and Everton are all October opponents. 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

Could the Emirates be done for Arsene?

The number of dissenters in the Arsenal fan base are growing.

As Fabregas nudges towards passport control, and Samir Nasri readies himself for the drive up the M6 to Eastlands, Arsene Wenger is facing open revolt from gunners fans as his philosophy and methods appear to crumble around him. After six barren years without a trophy, ‘the professor’ as he’s often characterised by the press, seems to be falling back on old answers to new questions with yet more left-field signings rather than a search for the tried-and-tested Premier League veterans some quarters call out for. Continue reading