By Andrew Misra
Injured. Probably the word most football fans would use to describe Abou Diaby’s career. He’s now announced his retirement at the age of 32. Diaby made just 198 club appearances in total during a 14-year career, and had been without a club since being released by Marseille in 2017. Continue reading “We need to talk about Abou: how good was Diaby?”
“When you look at the stats of the modern game, I am big on controlling domination of the ball. But against Everton we were able to dominate without the ball.” – Brendan Rodgers.
Continue reading “Brendan Rodgers, the underrated disciple of possession football who came five years too late”
By Andrew Misra
If you’ve spent a large amount of your life playing, watching and generally consuming football then it follows logically that you should know a lot about it. But the sport is so broad, deep and structurally layered that it’s impossible to be on top of it all. Stop a self-confessed football fanatic on the street and ask them who is fourth in the Eredivisie and there’s a good chance that they won’t know (AZ Alkmaar). That same fan, though, can tell you off the top of their head that Emile Heskey scored seven goals in 62 England appearances over an eleven-year international career. Or that a young Dimitar Berbatov came off the Bayer Leverkusen bench in the 39th minute of the 2002 Champions League Final.
Continue reading “Why women’s football is worth watching: lessons from Bramall Lane”
In a brand new weekly series, Kieran Ahuja takes a look at a weird, wonderful, wonky or just damn nice football kit. Continue reading “Kit of the Week #1: Atlético Madrid’s Hollywood season”
By Alex Brotherton
Within the cultural, racial and political melting pot that is Asian football, the region of South East Asia often finds itself forgotten. The likes of Japan, South Korea, Iran and Saudi Arabia have over the years made multiple appearances at World Cups and have won numerous Asian Cups. Meanwhile, Australia’s membership of the South East Asia Football Federation (ASEAN) notwithstanding, South East Asia has been under-represented. But while westerners associate that corner of the world with anything but football, a sleeping giant appears to be awakening. Keen to known for more than just a war, Vietnam is on the rise.
Continue reading “The Vietnamese football team: paving the way for a bright future in South East Asia”
Sheffield born Chris Wilder is quickly becoming a highly reputed manager in the Championship as he propels his boyhood club into automatic promotion contention. Wilder, whom began his managerial career at Alfreton Town, is earning plaudits for his unorthodox tactical style.
After earning his trade in the Yorkshire Sunday league as manager of Bradway FC, Wilder has gained a reputation for using philosophies he learnt when he started out in management. He believes his players should be treat like normal, working-class people who are playing for passion and points, rather than their hefty wage bill. Unlike his promotion contending counter-parts; Marcello Bielsa (Leeds) and Daniel Farke (Norwich City), Wilder’s roots into management stem from the lower reaches of English football.
Continue reading “Sheffield United’s 5-3-2 renaissance: a look at Chris Wilder’s innovative but old-school style reaping success in the Championship”
By Barney Stephenson
Earlier this month Eric Abidal was awarded “Cule of the year”, an award that recognises individuals who possess “the Barca DNA: teamwork, solidarity, respect, fair play, humility, ambition and generosity”. Back at the club he spent six years at after five years away it is fair to say that the Frenchman is a decent candidate for the accolade.
Continue reading “Eric Abidal: Cule of the year returns home to Lyon”