RETRO: Football in the 80s

Date: 30 Jan 2011 Comments:0

Football in the 80s

As the decade turned, we witnessed ‘The Empire’ striking back. Margaret Thatcher took control of the country and the USA reciprocated with Ronald Reagan. The British public saw an overbearing and oppressive matriarch, bully and cajole an idiot, and ultimately getting her own way, in the BBC comedy “Sorry”. In 1982, Britain goes to war with Argentina, in a battle over The Falkland Islands, a small archipelago 300 miles from Argentina, we become intimately familiar with Goose Green, Mount Tumbledown and Bluff Cove.

RETRO: Sorry TV programme
BBC’s TV programme Sorry

Not to be outdone, Ronald Reagan gets a taste for war by funding Nicaraguan rebels against the Sandinista government and invading Grenada. Later, he would sell arms to the Iraqis and the Afghanis to fight perceived oppressors, empowering Saddam Hussein and the Taliban regimes. Finally, taking it upon himself to flatten Tripoli and Libya in 1986, ultimately leading to the town of Lockerbie being flattened in 1988.

Football in the 80s on www.awaygoalsrule.co.uk

We were introduced to new words like Solidarnosc, Perestroika, Glasnost and mullet. There was talk of Star Wars, Space Invaders and even Megadeth. It was a decade of latch-key kids and pan-global Live Aid concerts, we attempted to right the world’s wrongs, as our own country sank to record unemployment and riots tore our inner cities apart. Toxteth, Handsworth, Brixton, Moss Side and St Paul’s were seen burning nightly on the news, as the British underclass expressed their discontent at the austerity of Thatcherite politics.

Dallas and Dynasty dictated that our shoulders rose, under an irresistible tidal wave of shoulder pads, “Fame” dictated that our ankles should be warm, Duran Duran decreed our hair should be highlighted, George Michael, our chins unshaven. Football too, was not impervious to trends and fashion, gone were the long cotton shorts of the 50s and 60s and we now were subjected to polyester short shorts and potentially the worst hairstyles known to man!

Football in the 80s: Bad Hair Day

A Bad Hair Decade

Momentum in European football was snowballing, English sides were becoming dominant. Nottingham Forest secured back to back European Cup victories in 79/80. Liverpool regained the cup in 80/81, by defeating Laurie Cunningham’s mighty Real Madrid side. Tony Barton continued the English onslaught by guiding Aston Villa to their first European Cup success in 81/82, with victory over the powerful Bayern Munich, making it ’6 of the best’. Kevin Keegan’s Hamburg SV snatched the trophy briefly in 82/83, before Liverpool regained it in a penalty shoot out versus AS Roma in 83/84.

Forest, Villa, Ipswich and Spurs Taste European Glory
Forest, Villa, Ipswich and Spurs Taste European Glory

On other European fronts English sides were excelling, Bobby Robson’s Ipswich, complete with ‘Dutch masters’ Frans Thijssen and Arnold Muhren conquered AZ Alkmaar in the UEFA Cup in 1980/81. Tottenham Hotspur following suit in 83/84 by beating Anderlecht on penalties, inspired by Tony Parks saving Arnur Gudjohnsen’s penalty (yes that is Eidur’s dad!). Everton got in on the act as an extremely powerful side, cruised to a Cup Winners Cup win in 84/85, crushing Rapid Vienna and narrowly missing out on an historic Treble, as Manchester United defeated the Division 1 Winners in the FA Cup Final.

Then, a nation growing sadly more accustomed to images of death and carnage, war and devastation, were again subjected to terrifying scenes. 29th May 1985, is a day that would resonate throughout football for years to come. Brussels was the scene, in a small, rundown 1930s stadium, football saw one of it’s blackest days.

UEFA in their wisdom, had designated a neutral section in the X, Y and Z block. This area was sectioned by flimsy wire fencing. This wide open terrace was all that separated the hardcore fans of Juventus and Liverpool. Brussels had a large Italian community and many of the tickets for this section fell into the hands of casual, Juventus supporting, middle class expatriates, travelling families, women and children. The wire fencing could not hold back the hooligan elements as they charged through the section, rampaging and clashing with each other… terrified and panicking, the innocent Juventus fans tried to flee and as the crumbling ground collapsed around them, 39 innocent people died that day (32 Italians, 4 Belgians, 2 Frenchmen and an Irishman). The policing and organisation of the game was shambolic, the behaviour disgraceful. No-one cared there was a game..

AGR RETRO: Heysel Stadium Disaster

Heysel Stadium Disaster

English teams were banned from all European competition, for an undetermined time, later, it transpired to be 5 years (6 for Liverpool). English domination of Europe was over, a Golden Era came to an end, Everton never got the opportunity to discover whether they were, what many suspected, the best team in Europe. UEFA turned its back on English football and left it to it’s own devices.

On the domestic front, the 80s saw Liverpool carry on where they left off, winning 6 Championships, a resurgent Everton and towards the end of the decade, Arsenal began to stake a claim, as a shift of power slowly began.

Football in the 70s was a real dichotomy, players were either immensely skilful or immensely talented at stopping the immensely skilful. The 80s began a movement away from that simple formula. Brian Clough once said that “football is a simple game, it’s the players that make it complicated”. Players and positions began to evolve, as the game became more sophisticated.

The clubs began to open their arms to new ‘foreigners’, overseas players who brought a new ‘continental’ philosophy, World Cup winners and Latin Americans arrived, with new ideas, new styles and a new perspective.

Midfield enforcers became a dying breed, rule changes and a change of philosophy, saw players like Bryan Robson, Peter Reid, Jimmy Case and Terry Yorath slowly disappear, as they were replaced by technically good, sophisticated passers or dribblers of the ball. Players like Glenn Hoddle, Ossie Ardiles, Kazimierz Deyna, Arnold Muhren, Jan Molby, Ray Wilkins, Trevor Brooking stroked the ball around the park. Pitches improved, coaching became more refined, money began to be attracted to the game and players responded accordingly.

Peter Reid, Ossie Ardiles, Kazimierz Deyna and Des Walker
Peter Reid, Ossie Ardiles, Kazimierz Deyna and Des Walker

Liverpool initially started the trend of footballing centrebacks, with Emlyn Hughes, others were quick to follow, players like Alan Hansen, Mark Lawrenson, Martin Buchan, David O’Leary, Des Walker, Kevin Ratcliffe, Gary Mabbutt replaced rock solid dinosaurs like Big Sam Allardyce, Big Jim Holton, Big Larry Lloyd and errrr Terry Butcher.

Wingers became technically more adept, skilful, less about sheer pace and more about trickery, if anything harking back to the days of Matthews, Finney and Peters. The 80s saw the emergence of Chris Waddle, John Barnes, Peter Barnes, John Robertson and Trevor Steven.

Chris Waddle, John Barnes, Mick Mills and Viv Anderson
Chris Waddle, John Barnes, Mick Mills and Viv Anderson

Fullbacks too were required to adapt, become more versatile, contribute going forwards. Players like Phil Neal, Mick Mills, Kenny Sansom, Gary Stevens, Viv Anderson and Steve Perryman came to the fore.

Goalkeepers too got in on the act, they were improving technically, but it was the same old faces making their mark, the eternally young Peter Shilton and Ray Clemence, but adding to their number were new rising stars, Neville Southall, South African Bruce Grobbelaar, Les Sealey and Nigel Spink.

Neville Southall, Bruce Grobbelaar, Gary Lineker and Clive Allen
Neville Southall, Bruce Grobbelaar, Gary Lineker and Clive Allen

Up against them, were a new breed of strikers, quicker, more like a stiletto knife, than the bludgeons of the 70s, sharp, with an eye for goal. Strikers in the 80s were exceptional scorers, less about team work, work ethic, contribution, more about scoring goals, some were brilliant, great thinkers of the game, others were devastating out and out goalscorers, this was the era of the international world class goal getters. Names like Ian Rush, Gary Lineker, Clive Allen, John Aldridge, Kevin Keegan, Kenny Dalglish, Tony Woodcock and Trevor Francis lit up our back pages, cosmopolitan, international, plying their trade in Spain, Italy, France, Germany, bolstered by learning new and exciting skills from ‘abroad’, these players brought Europe to us, when we couldn’t go into Europe.

Managers too, embraced new philosophies, Brian Clough and Bob Paisley carried on where they had left off in the 70s. Paisley quit while he was ahead and was replaced by “the bootroom’s” Joe Fagin who remarkably won a Treble in 1983/84, securing the league, the League Cup and the European Cup, the Heysel Stadium disaster devastating him so much, that he gave up football all together, after a brief and glittering managerial career, only to be replaced by Anfield Legend, Kenny Dalglish, who instantly led them to their first Double as ‘player coach’. Dalglish too witnessed his own disaster, being manager at the time of the Hillsborough Disaster in 1989, he left soon after. Howard Kendall masterminded Everton’s return to the pinnacle of English football, winning the League Cup, The FA Cup, 2 Championships, adding European glory with a memorable Cup Winners Cup triumph in 1985, in all likelihood it would have been more but for the European ban forcing him to Spain in 1987. Towards the end of the decade, there was a ‘new kid on the block’, from Scotland, George Graham, would help to usher in a new era and waiting in the wings, another Scot was building in Manchester.

Joe Fagin, Kenny Dalglish, Howard Kendall and George Graham
Joe Fagin, Kenny Dalglish, Howard Kendall and George Graham

AGR RETRO: Football in the 1980s

For more exclusive, quality content head on over to www.awaygoalsrule.co.uk, where you can find other AwayGoalsRule Retro articles including Football in the 70s, Football in the 90s, as well as many legendary former player and manager features.

And when you’ve enjoyed all that, join us on our free forum at www.awaygoalsrule.com where you can meet and chat with like-minded football fans about the beautiful game, as well as other topics from TV to Tech Support and many more. See you there. :)

Who loves you Bébé

Date: 12 Aug 2010 Comments:0

Who loves you Bebe - AwayGoalsRule Football Forum

Manchester United’s Third Signing of the summer: I love you Bébé

Another morning, and another shock from Alex Ferguson, as he adds to the ranks with a big surprise from Portugal. This time in the form of 20 year-old Tiago Manuel Dias Correia, better known as Bébé.

The shock new 6 foot 3 inch signing arrives at Old Trafford from Vitória de Guimarães, having arrived there this summer just five weeks ago from his previous club, Estrela da Amadora in the Portugese Third Division.

According to reports, Bébé spent time being raised in an orphanage during his youth, after spending part of his childhood on the streets, hardened from a tough background of street football which carries over into his playing style impressing greatly in pre-season friendlies, though his only real experience of note so far came representing Portugal in the homeless World Cup, a competition held annually since 2003.

But the 20-year-old clearly did enough that Portugal coach Carlos Quieroz has identified his abilities and impressed his feelings upon old pal Sir Alex Ferguson, leading to Manchester United acting with lightening speed to secure his signature ahead of their rivals, reported to be no less than Jose Mourinho’s Real Madrid. If true, Ferguson scores another point against his old sparring partner… which is nice.

Manchester United are reported to have agreed to pay the full release clause to release Bébé from his five-year contract with his previous new club, and while the fee is officially undisclosed, the Guardian and others are reporting a fee somewhere in the region of £7.4m for his services – quite a sizeable fee for an unknown young player from the lower leagues – and enough to fuel speculation that while Bébé is far from the finished article, he has enough in his locker to work on and become something very good indeed. If he turns out to be as good as the young Mexican striker Javier Hernández, another of Ferguson’s surprise summer captures, then Manchester United might well have got themselves another very good deal – even more impressive because it was done out of the public spotlight and away from the ears of would-be rivals eager to snatch the prize away from Old Trafford and Ferguson’s new-look squad.

It’s fair to say nobody saw this one coming until the ink was dry, typical of many of United’s deals of late, now released of their obligation to report their intentions to the stock exchange.

As for the paperwork, it is said personal terms have been agreed with the 20-year-old and he will move to Old Trafford as long as he passes a medical, and no problems are foreseen.

We shouldn’t be surprised as United and Ferguson clearly have their network of spies around the world, but I still can’t help being a bit surprised; Bébé was a relative unknown outside his native country, he only arrived at Guimarães in July 2010 and it is a mark of Sir Alex Ferguson’s belief in his new striker that he was prepared to spend that sort of money on a virtually unknown player who has spent most of his career playing in the Portuguese third division.

Bébé’s arrival takes United’s spending to around £25 million, squashing some fans fears that Ferguson’s war chest is empty and the club are broke. Fans may be somewhat reassured, because despite the lack of star names many were calling for, the wily Scot has already added towering former Fulham defender Chris Smalling and the exciting Javier Hernández to his squad in readiness for the new season, further strengthening United at the back and up front.

Sir Alex Ferguson apparently only met the player for the first time on Tuesday, whilst he was in Portugal to be a witness for Carlos Queiroz in a disciplinary case with the Portuguese Football Federation. Not a lot else is known so far, though I’m sure he’ll be all over YouTube and the Interwebs soon enough. Until then, let’s wait and see if Fergie’s new generation can match the previous all conquering one. I for one can’t wait…

You can join in the debate over on AwayGoalsRule.com football forum. See you there.

Bebe

Manchester United’s Third Signing of the summer: I love you Bébé

Another morning, and another shock from Alex Ferguson, as he

adds to the ranks with a big surprise from Portugal. This time in the

form of 20 year-old Tiago Manuel Dias Correia, better known as

Bébé.

The shock new 6 foot 3 inch signing arrives at Old Trafford from

Vitória de Guimarães, having arrived there this summer just five

weeks ago from his previous club, Estrela da Amadora in the

Portugese Third Division.

Bébé spent time being raised in an orphanage during his youth,

after spending part of his childhood on the streets, hardened from

a tough background of street football which carries over into his

playing style, impressing greatly in preseason friendlies; his only

real experience of note so far, came representing Portugal in the

homeless World Cup, a competition held annually since 2003.

But the 20-year-old clearly did enough that Portugal coach Carlos

Quieroz has identfied his abilities and impressed his feelings upon

old pal Sir Alex Ferguson, making Manchester United act with

lightening speed to secure his signature ahead of their rivals,

reported to be no less than Jose Mourinho’s Real Madrid. If true,

Ferguson scores another point against his old sparring partner.

Manchester United are reported to have agreed to pay the full

release clause to release Bébé from his five-year contract with his

previous new club, and while the fee is officially undisclosed, the

Guardian and others are reporting a fee somewhere in the region

of £7.4m for his services – quite a sizeable fee for an unknown

young player from the lower leagues – and enough to fuel

speculation that while Bébé is far from the finished article, he has

enough in his locker to work on and become something very good

indeed. If he turns out to be as good as the young Mexican striker

Javier Hernandez, another of Ferguson’s surprise summer

captures, then Manchester United might well have got themselves

another very good deal – even more impressive because it was

done out of the public spotlight and away from the ears of

would-be rivals eager to snatch the prize away from Old Trafford

and Ferguson’s new-look squad.

It’s fair to say nobody saw this one coming until the ink was dry,

typical of many of United’s deals of late, now released of their

obligation to report their intentions to the stock exchange.

As for the paperwork, it is said personal terms have been agreed

with the 20-year-old and he will move to Old Trafford as long as he

passes a medical, and no problems are foreseen.

We shouldn’t be surprised as United and Ferguson clearly have their

network of spies around the world, but I still can’t help being a bit

surprised; Bébé was a relative unknown outside his native country,

and he only arrived at Guimarães in July 2010 and it is a mark of

Sir Alex Ferguson’s belief in his new striker that he was prepared to

spend that sort of money on a virtually unknown player who has

spent most of his career playing in the Portuguese third division.

Bébé’s arrival takes United’s spending to around £25 million, hardly

backup up some fans fears that Ferguson’s war chest is empty and

the club are broke. Fans may be somewhat reassured, because

despite the lack of star names many were calling for, the wily Scot

has already added towering former Fulham defender Chris Smalling

and the exciting Javier Hernández to his squad in readiness for the

new season.

Sir Alex Ferguson apparently only met the player for the first time

on Tuesday, whilst he was in Portugal to be a witness for Carlos

Queiroz in a disciplinary case with the Portuguese Football

Federation.

Taking a bite of the Apple

Date: 29 Jul 2010 Comments:0

Taking a bite of the Apple - AwayGoalsRule.com Blog

Since it’s formation on April Fool’s Day 1976, Apple Inc. has been one of the more curious operators out there in computerland. Now back under the guidance of lucky talisman Steve Jobs, they’re back to the top of their game after nearly going bankrupt just a few years ago. You’d think all would be well.

But despite their many victories, this is now, and in an age where he thinks he can sell crap in a box and if there is a problem with it, pretend you’ve opened the packaging wrong, and it’s your own fault for getting brown fingers.

Apple products have always carried a price premium, and generally cost approaching double (or more) for the equivalent PC compatible specification. Comparably priced alternatives were always vastly technologically superior. But Jobs always countered this by saying he had the best stuff. But has he? He certainly doesn’t like it when anyone questions that.

But he is something of a marketing genius. He has so many fanbois (and one presumes, fangirls) that don’t ask questions singing to the Emperor’s New Clothes hymnsheet that somehow it’s generally falling under the mass-media radar. Sure, they’ll show you the all-night queues the night before launch date, when they deliberately limit stock to give the impression it’s a sold out success, which might not had enough stock have been delivered instead of held back.

Not so long ago, they were nailed because of the iPhone 4′s inability to hold a steady telephone conversation, and the shower of excuses about how it’s not their fault. Despite it’s famed reception problems caused by shoddy design flaws, and expert analysis backing up this view, Jobs’ Apple are still not having it. No honourable product recall for Apple, just constant denials whilst they secretly send broken iPhones back to customers housed in a newly designed case. But wait I hear you cry, if nothing was wrong with the old one…  Indeed. Jobs went on record to claim that there wasn’t a fault at all and it was fine, then he said that there was a fault but that it wasn’t important as proved by the fact it was a ‘feature’ of the original iPhone, then he blamed a software error by claiming the on-screen status of the signal strength bar was just inaccurate and that in fact… it had a strong signal anyway, issuing software updates to back it up. Then when that didn’t work, he blamed YOU, the users for being too stupid to hold it correctly! Everybody else’s fault except Apple, according to Apple, despite evidence to the contrary. Jobs even denied that repaired iPhones had been returned in new cases, even the photographs and customer testamony are available on the net.

Lesson learned? Guess again.

Currently they are being sued because the iPad shuts down when it gets too hot, and the US courts have been asked to elevate the lawsuit to class action status. User are saying things like:

“the iPad is virtually unusable when sitting in particular environmental conditions (e.g., in direct sunlight with virtually any ambient air temperature) since it turns off, sometimes after just a few minutes of use.”

The suit states that “according to the www.apple.com website, ‘Reading on iPad is just like reading a book.’ However, contrary to this promise, using the iPad is not ‘just like reading a book’ at all since books do not close when the reader is enjoying them in the sunlight or in other normal environmental environments. This promise, like other portions of APPLE’s marketing material for the iPad, is false.”

The complaint asks for no specific damages, but otherwise leaves few legal stones unturned: relief is sought based on ten “Causes of Action”, including fraud, negligent misrepresentation, deceptive advertising practices, unjust enrichment, breach of both express and implied warranties, and violations of California’s Consumer Legal Remedies, Unfair Competition, and Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty acts.

Really? Noooo. Apple wouldn’t treat customers to substandard tat whilst swearing blind it’s top-of-the-range luxury goods would it? LOL!

Perhaps this time Steve Jobs will blame the universe for making the sun too hot, or blame customers for not living in the right part of the world where the temperature allowed the iPad to operate properly.

Either way, the mass consumer should take note, even if Jobs refuses.

If Apple want to be the King of Cool, their stuff needs to work as advertised.

How hard can it be?

27/07/2010

Taking a bite of the Apple: Before they take a bit out of you

Since it’s formation on April Fool’s Day 1976, Apple Inc. has been one of the more curious operators out

there in computerland. Now back under the guidance of lucky talisman Steve Jobs, they’re back to the

top of their game after nearly going bankrupt just a few years ago. You’d think all would be well.

But despite their many victories, this is now, and in an age where he thinks he can sell crap in a box and if

there is a problem with it, pretend you’ve opened the packaging wrong, and it’s your own fault for getting

brown fingers.

Apple products have always carried a price premium, and generally cost approaching double (or more) for

the equivalent PC compatible specification. Comparably priced alternatives were always vastly

technologically superior. But Jobs always countered this by saying he had the best stuff. But has he? He

certainly doesn’t like it when anyone questions that.

But he is something of a marketing genius. He has so many fanbois (and one presumes, fangirls) that

don’t ask questions singing to the Emperor’s New Clothes hymnsheet that somehow it’s generally falling

under the mass-media radar. Sure, they’ll show you the all-night queues the night before launch date,

when they deliberately limit stock to give the impression it’s a sold out success, which might not had

enough stock have been delivered instead of held back.

Not so long ago, they were nailed because of the iPhone 4′s inability to hold a steady telephone

conversation, and the shower of excuses about how it’s not their fault. Despite it’s famed reception

problems caused by shoddy design flaws, and expert analysis backing up this view, Jobs’ Apple are still

not having it. No honourable product recall for Apple, just constant denials whilst they secretly send

broken iPhones back to customers housed in a newly designed case. But wait I hear you cry, if nothing

was wrong with the old one…  Indeed. Jobs went on record to claim that there wasn’t a fault at all and it

was fine, then he said that there was a fault but that it wasn’t important as proved by the fact it was a

‘feature’ of the original iPhone, then he blamed a software error by claiming the on-screen status of the

signal strength bar was just inaccurate and that in fact… it had a strong signal anyway, issuing software

updates to back it up. Then when that didn’t work, he blamed YOU, the users for being too stupid to hold

it correctly! Everybody else’s fault except Apple, according to Apple, despite evidence to the contrary.

Jobs even denied that repaired iPhones had been returned in new cases, even the photographs and

customer testamony are available on the net.

Lesson learned? Guess again.

Currently they are being sued because the iPad shuts down when it gets too hot, and the US courts have

been asked to elevate the lawsuit to class action status. User are saying things like:

“the iPad is virtually unusable when sitting in particular environmental conditions (e.g., in direct sunlight

with virtually any ambient air temperature) since it turns off, sometimes after just a few minutes of use.”

The suit states that “according to the www.apple.com website, ‘Reading on iPad is just like reading a

book.’ However, contrary to this promise, using the iPad is not ‘just like reading a book’ at all since books

do not close when the reader is enjoying them in the sunlight or in other normal environmental

environments. This promise, like other portions of APPLE’s marketing material for the iPad, is false.”

The complaint asks for no specific damages, but otherwise leaves few legal stones unturned: relief is

sought based on ten “Causes of Action”, including fraud, negligent misrepresentation, deceptive

advertising practices, unjust enrichment, breach of both express and implied warranties, and violations of

California’s Consumer Legal Remedies, Unfair Competition, and Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty acts.

Really? Noooo. Apple wouldn’t treat customers to substandard tat whilst swearing blind it’s

top-of-the-range luxury goods would it? LOL!

Perhaps this time Steve Jobs will blame the universe for making the sun too hot, or blame customers for

not living in the right part of the world where the temperature allowed the iPad to operate properly.

Either way, the mass consumer should take note, even if Jobs refuses.

If Apple want to be the King of Cool, their stuff needs to work as advertised. How hard can it be?

The Unlucky Dozen: Manchester City and the 25 player rule

Date: 27 Jul 2010 Comments:0

The Unlucky Dozen: Manchester City and the 25 player rule

Banner image for The Unlucky Dozen : Manchester City and the 25 player rule

Oh dear oh dear oh dear. Oh dear. What were Manchester City thinking? That seems to be the general consensus at the moment, with their continued ignorance of the 25 player rule. Their insistence on continued new player recruitment when their current squad sits at 37 names is a bafflement to all.

As you all know, the Premier League has introduced a new rule that limits match-day squads to be picked from the submitted squad list of only 25 players. So what then, for the unlucky dozen?

Speaking to Sky Sports News after last night’s 2-1 defeat to New York Red Bulls, Mancini insisted he didn’t know the identity of which of his stars would be sold.

“We must do a list with 25 players. For this, I think that some players remain out of the list and for them it’s better that they leave the club,” Mancini revealed.

“We are not sure whether it’ll be [Craig] Bellamy, [Michael] Johnson, [Nigel] De Jong it is impossible now to know which players will be on the list.”

Pretty gauling for the players you’d have thought, and a pretty bad way to demotivate anyone likely to make the list, and leave large parts of your squad quite unhappy. Additionally, it may only serve to deter future signings as they know if they don’t hit the ground running they’ll simply be replaced on a whim or left to rot after not being named on the squad list; similarly with their youngsters, the chance of a squad place is now further away than ever. And of course, if they weren’t funded by a billionaire, then the lower fees they’ll receive as sellers in a hurry could be a real problem too.

Out of Manchester City’s 37 players, they have 4 goalkeepers, 13 defenders, 14 midfielders and 7 strikers – clearly more than any club needs, but where money is no object, the numbers were never a problem. Until now. Players such as Fulop, Neilsen, Garrido, Onuoha, De Jong, Michael Johnson, Stephen Ireland, Roque Santa Cruz, Bellamy and others will be watching the sports headlines with added interest to learn if their employer will be spending large amounts of money to upgrade what was previously their spot on the list. Most recently, Aleksandar Kolarov arrived for £14.1m from Lazio, but he’s not the only new arrival as he joins their £24m capture from Valencia, David Silva, £28m Barca reserve Yaya Toure and a further £10m for Jerome Boateng in the new arrivals lounge. And talk of yet more new players, step forward Aston Villa’s James Milner, Inter Milan’s Mario Balotelli, and if the press is to be believed (lol), more to come. These sure are hard times… unless you’re City.

I suppose time will tell for Mancini and his Manchester Galacticos. In the meantime, there’ll be plenty of clubs waiting for the chance to sign their spare players for reduced fees, so it’s not all bad if you’re one of the unlucky dozen.

Written by Conscience • © 2010 Conscience and AwayGoalsRule

Welcome to the AwayGoalsRule Blog

Date: 16 Jul 2010 Comments:0

Awaygoalsrule Blog - Visit the forum today awaygoalsrule.com

And someone said, let there be a new blog, and there was a new blog.

It was generally regarded as good, too. :D

Welcome the AwayGoalsRule.com Football Forum blog, another part of the AGR project. This will be the new platform for views and news, opinions and predictions and erm stuff. Be sure to expand your mind by checking out our content, both here and on our other sites like www.awaygoalsrule.com where you can find our excellent free forum that covers all sports as well as more general chat, serious discussion, jokes, a comprehensive techie section including technical support, and even an adults only jokes and chat area – and stuff like an inbuilt arcade with 100′s of games built in with the ability to compete with your fellow members for the top scores. There’s also our football website, that has much original, exclusive content – like a brilliant Retro section looking back at yesteryear, the infamous Rio’s Diaries, to our Black-Ops articles – for the open minded only! Plus much more, original lookalikes etc.

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