Advent Day 14 – Guti, the underrated Galáctico

By Jack Heale

José María Gutiérrez Hernández, more commonly known as Guti, epitomised the saying ‘what could have been’ regarding a footballer. When he was at his best, he was unplayable, but likewise, when he was not up to standard, the Real Madrid faithful made sure he knew. The two contrasts seemingly encapsulate his 15-year-long professional career. Continue reading “Advent Day 14 – Guti, the underrated Galáctico”

Advent Day 5 – Zinedine Zidane, Zou Bissou Zizou

By Joe Davies

Mad Men’s fifth season premiere ended with an iconic performance of the French song ‘Zou Bissou Bissou’, sung by Don Draper’s French-Canadian wife to him on his birthday. Don shifted in his seat uncomfortably as Meghan sung the song roughly translated as ‘Oh! Kiss Kiss’, reflecting the generational gap between the two, as Meghan Draper bared the couple’s intimate relationship for all his coworkers to see. Much like Don, one could imagine Zinedine Zidane would likewise be uncomfortable with the adoration he receives from French football fans, as well as that from across the border in Madrid; much like Draper, Zizou is a reserved, strong and silent type, and has a similar identity problem, albeit down to his Algerian roots rather than stealing the name of his officer in command during the war.

Continue reading “Advent Day 5 – Zinedine Zidane, Zou Bissou Zizou”

When Kaká was unstoppable and ran past the World

By Andrew Misra

The date is Thursday 8th March 2007. It’s three minutes into extra-time in the second leg of the Champions League last-16 tie at the San Siro after 180 minutes of hard-fought stalemate.

Celtic midfielder Evander Sno squanders possession and the opposition swiftly launch a counter attack.  A 25-year-old Brazilian lurking just inside his own half senses an opportunity. Italian midfielder Massimo Ambrosini dutifully passes the ball towards the number 22 in the famous red and black stripes of the Rossoneri.

The ball bobbles into the playmaker at pace. His first touch cushions the ball into his path, allowing him to swivel and shrug Neil Lennon to the floor as the Northern Irishman forlornly attempts a challenge. A second touch sees the attacker gallop through the centre circle, accelerating in his own inimitable way.

Three more touches see him surge towards the last defender, the fourth takes him one-on-one with the keeper Artur Boruc. Seemingly impassable over the two legs, the Pole is powerless as the final, decisive Continue reading “When Kaká was unstoppable and ran past the World”