FOOTBALL, SOCCER , THE BEAUTIFUL GAME - The Latest News updated by Andrew de Burgh
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Don't worry as Andrew de Burgh will fill you in!
|photographer - Harrison Yager|
April 22nd 2015
Brenda Rodgers the walking, talking Disease
Merely days after Liverpool’s miserable and woeful 2-1 defeat to Aston Villa in the FA Cup semifinal and I still feel as utterly depressed as I ever have been after a football match. Three years ago, when Brenda (I’m going to call him Brenda from now on) Rodgers was appointed as Liverpool’s manager, he must have thought he had won the lottery! The seemingly nice Northern Irishman had never won a trophy in his life and his greatest achievement was playing ‘good’ football with Swansea. We are talking about a man who got fired from Reading! The man’s sole intention while at Liverpool was to destroy the club from within. Sadly, he has succeeded to the immense sadness of Liverpool fans all over the world. Brenda has become the first Liverpool manager since 1950 to not win a trophy in his first three seasons. Well done Brenda, you’ve destroyed Liverpool. I hope your happy with yourself.
The only theory I can come up with as to why Brenda has singlehandedly destroyed Liverpool is that he a closet Manchester United fan. He has spent more than 200 million pounds (thinking about the figure makes me sick) on abysmal players with the exception of Daniel Sturridge, Phillipe Coutinho and Simon Mignolet. We are talking about a man here who bought Mario Balotelli, Iago Aspas, Dejan Lovren, Luis Alberto (you probably haven’t even heard of this overpriced, overrated garbage dump disposal) and Rickie Lambert. There are other flops but it’s making me cry even thinking about them so I’m going to stop.
Last summer, only the exceptional Barcelona spent more money than us on players and we now find ourselves seven points off the top 4, had a woeful Champions League campaign in which we finished last in a group containing FC Basel and Ludogorets and crashed out of all domestic cups like a wounded animal. Our only victory in the Champions League was a 2-1 lucky win against Ludogorets.
Last season, we were 5 points clear at the top of the table with three games left to go and what does Brenda do? He purposely makes his Liverpool side lose to Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea by playing a ridiculously attacking formation when he knows that Mourinho will simply park the bus and slaughter Liverpool on the counterattack. Unfortunately, for us Reds fans this is exactly what Chelsea did. A lot of people blame Steven Gerrard for his slip but the blame should truly be put on Rodger’s doorstep.
Another theory I’ve come up with is that Brenda wants to be fired so he can take his 10 million pound payout so he can take his beautiful girlfriend on an around the world vacation. Why else did he lose weight and paint his teeth white? Sadly, it appears that our owners are infatuated with Brenda and won’t fire him because they see him as their ‘man’. Hopefully, I’ve exposed Brenda for the walking, talking disease that he is; one that has ravaged the club from within. There’s no stopping him unless Liverpool are swiftly cured of Rodgeritis.
April 14th 2015
Another sensational weekend of Premier League football! Liverpool got back on track for a top 4 place with a strange game that saw an absurd amount of chances go missing. Raheem Sterling scored a wonderful opener but had two misses, one of which may be the miss of the season and that’s saying a great deal when clowns like Nikica Jelavic and Andreas Weimann miss chances every week like they’re going out of fashion.
Manchester United and Manchester City went head to head at Old Trafford. The Red Devils won 4-2, a score which truly flattered Manchester City, who played like a pack of sleep deprived sailors. James Milner had a horror show and made the other Manchester City lemons like Vincent Kompany and Yaya Toure look like world-class superstars.
Cesc Fabregas scored a jammy winner away at Queens Park Rangers after a Clint Hill gaffe. Is it just me or does Clint Hill look like the actor Jason Clarke?! Actually, I look nothing like Jason Clarke! Leicester picked up a priceless three points away at West Brom when they came from 2-1 behind to win 3-2 in their quest to stay in the division. It was one of the games of the season. Arsenal’s fantastic form continued as they yet again picked up another three points, this time at Burnley. The attacking quartet of Alexis Sanchez, Mezut Ozil, Olivier Giroud and Santi Cazorla continued to excel as they have so often done in the past few weeks.
Arsenal’s North London rivals Tottenham fell flat on their face when they slipped to a miserable 1-0 home defeat against Tim Sherwood’s Aston Villa. Harry Kane ruined my Dad’s fantasy score when he got a miserable 2 points. My favorite Premier League manager Dick Advocaat endured a torrid day as he watched his Sunderland get splattered in a 4-1 home defeat against the in form Crystal Palace. Yannick Bolasie’s hat trick sunk Sunderland, which even prompted fans to leave long before the final whistle. Glenn Murray, looking like Lionel Messi for the second game in a week, opened the scoring with a pin point header. For those readers who don’t watch the Premier League, Glenn Murray doesn’t actually look like Lionel Messi; Santiago Vergini and John O’Shea were just so abysmal that they made Glenn Murray look like he’s as good a footballer as Lionel Messi. That takes some doing since the journeyman Murray isn’t exactly Lionel Messi...
West Ham drew 1-1 with Stoke. Funnily enough, I knew it would be a 1-1 draw since West Ham and Stoke are both aggressive, gritty teams that surely were destined to cancel each other out. Swansea and Everton played out an entertaining 1-1 draw in which ex Red Jonjo Shelvey scored a superb penalty against Tim “the beard keeps getting longer” Howard. Doesn’t Jonjo Shelvey look like Mike Myer’s character Dr. Evil in the Austin Powers film franchise? I’ll be back next week with more cynical Premier League analysis. I will also discuss the weekend’s FA Cup semi finals. Hopefully Reading and Liverpool will be in the final next month!
April 8th 2015
Quality Goals Galore
I have been watching the Premier League for many, many years but I have never seen a weekend of football with quite as many outstanding goals. It really was extraordinary. In the first game of the weekend (Arsenal vs. Liverpool), Gunners quartet Hector Bellerin, Mezut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez and Olivier Giroud all scored brilliant goals against the limp and helpless Liverpool, a performance that was personally quite psychologically traumatizing. Even under Brendan Rodgers, it is rare for Liverpool to play so poorly. Kolo Toure gave one of the worst individual Liverpool performances anyone has ever seen. It really was abominably shocking and even more horrifying than watching ‘Paranormal Activity’ by yourself at 2 in the morning!
Wayne Rooney scored a brilliant volley against Tim (the aggressive egomaniac) Sherwood’s Aston Villa in a 3-1 win that further cemented Manchester United’s grip on a top four position. Their derby game against the faltering Manchester City this weekend promises to have some top quality drama! Swansea’s Bafetimbi Gomis suddenly decided to have a great game and scored a brilliant volley in the Swans home win against Steve Bruce’s consistently diabolical Hull. Paul McShane, who bears an uncanny resemblance to the actor Aaron Eckhart scored his first Premier League goal in six years. The last time he scored was against Liverpool at Anfield. I wonder why I remember that...
QPR forward Bobby Zamora aka Bobby Z scored a brilliant chipped goal in their 4-1 win at Tony Pulis’ West Brom team. Yes, that’s right, a Tony Pulis team lost 4-1 at home! For those who don’t know, Tony Pulis is a defensive mastermind who went what seemed like years without losing at home when he managed Stoke and his West Brom players put in a show that may well give him nightmares for years to come! In Chelsea’s home game against Stoke, Charlie Adam scored one of the greatest goals of all time when he beat Chelsea’s Belgian world-class keeper Thibaut Courtois from all of sixty-five yards.
Sunday saw two very contrasting games in the Premier League. Burnley’s dour and miserable 0-0 home draw against Tottenham was iconic in that it may be the new cure to day time insomnia for people working night shifts! Jermain Defoe scored a cracking volley against Newcastle that stretched Sunderland’s winning streak over Newcastle to five games! Ironically, Mike Dean gave yellow cards to seven players and Lee (the thug) Cattermole wasn’t one of them! Did you know that Lee Cattermole is the only player in the Premier League who tucks his shirt in when he plays?!
Manchester City’s miserable form continued as they slipped to a fourth successive away defeat in the Premier League against Alan Pardew’s in form Crystal Palace team. Palace’s Jason Puncheon added to the tally of this weekend’s great goals when he beat the helpless Joe Hart with a wonderfully taken free kick. Manuel Pellegrini’s future at Manchester City remains in severe doubt after a dreadful Champions League campaign in which they were outclassed by Barcelona and if City do not make top 4 this season, the likeable Chilean will surely be dismissed.
In the final Premier League game this week, Aston Villa and QPR played out an entertaining 3-3 draw that saw Christian Benteke score a hat trick which takes his tally to four goals in two games. Tim Sherwood may have as big an ego as previous Villa boss Paul Lambert, but at least the team scores goals under him!
April 1st 2015
Psychological Trauma of International Football
It’s been a while since the Premier League wasn’t on at the weekend and my goodness it was horrible to not be able to watch exciting teams like Stoke and West Ham scrap to a dour 1-1 draw. Watching a mediocre England bully their way to a 4-0 win against the mighty Lithuania was so poor I actually left the Ye Old King’s Head in Santa Monica after 60 minutes and missed Harry Kane’s world-class goal! What a shame! Afterwards Wayne Rooney came out and said that nations will now be ‘frightened’ to play England after a few wins against the mighty nations of Scotland, Lithuania and San Marino. I never figured Wazza as a comedian! Has he forgotten that England failed to win a single game in the World Cup (the time when it counts the most)? Having said this, we have a habit of performing horrendously in the major tournaments but when it comes to qualifying games against world minnows Andorra and Slovenia, we step up and hammer them, the British press thinks we’re going to win the World Cup and then when it comes to a major tournament, we bomb and the cycle starts all over again! It’s been the same since we last performed well at a tournament (yes, it was World Cup 1990). Isn’t a shame that the Golden Generation of Frank Lampard, Rio Ferdinand, Steven Gerrard and John Terry never got to a semi-final? At least now no one can argue that we’re not rubbish when lemons like Phil Jones and Rickie Lambert put on the shirt! You could honestly put an England shirt on a lemon and I’d be willing to bet he’d perform better than Rickie Lambert. The guy can’t even get into the Liverpool team – now that’s saying something!
England did, however, get a credible draw on Tuesday against Italy. Graziano “can’t hit a wall with a baseball bat” Pelle scored the opening goal past the egotistical Joe Hart. Forgotten man Andros Townsend scored a brilliant second half equalizer. Ironically, most footballers save their best form for their club but Andros Townsend is an exception. His performances for England in recent years far outshine his performances for Tottenham.
This weekend promises to have some exciting football on display. Saturday morning sees my beloved Liverpool travel to the Emirates to take on the in form Gunners. If Liverpool lose, it really will be the end of their push for a top 4 position and it won’t be the recent loss against Manchester United that cost them, it will be their performance during the first half of the season that was as lifeless as a moldy piece of bread. If Liverpool fail to make the top 4, fingers must be pointed at manager Brendan Rodgers, who after spending more than 100 million pounds on new players, failed to get Liverpool out of the Champions League group stage and failed to make the ever-valuable top 4. Chelsea’s home game against Stoke promises to be interesting when the two biggest thugs in the Premier League (Diego Costa and Ryan Shawcross) go head to head. Don’t be surprised if there are some fireworks. Till next week folks!
March 25th 2015
There’s a reason why the Premier League is regarded as the best soccer league in the world. We may not have Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi playing against thugs like Ryan Shawcross on wet, Wednesday nights in Stoke but every weekend brings heapless buckets of top-notch drama. Thankfully, this past round of Premier League action was no different. I painfully watched my beloved Liverpool lose at Anfield to a Manchester United team that have been as effective as a chocolate tea pot this season. Steven Gerrard’s red card 38 seconds after coming on as a second half substitute will unfortunately be remembered by United supporters for many years to come. Thankfully, Wayne Rooney’s miserable record at Anfield continued (he hasn’t scored a goal there for ten years!) despite the fact that the unbelievably overrated United forward had a penalty saved by the hapless Simon Mignolet! Mignolet may have improved in recent weeks, but make no mistake, he is an absolutely woeful goalkeeper simply playing in the form of his life.
Louis Van Gaal further proved that he is the biggest egomaniac to grace the Premier League (considering Jose Mourinho, Mark Hughes and Arsene Wenger manage in the Premier League this is saying a lot!) simply because he has intentionally destroyed Radamel Falcao’s career to the extent that the Colombian striker and his agent cry over the phone about Falcao’s flop Manchester United career, apparently. How tragic. If I was getting three hundred and fifty thousand pounds a week to play FIFA all day, I’d be quite happy.
In other Premier League action, referee Neil Swarbrick sent off the wrong West Brom player in their match against the declining champions Manchester City. In the second minute, the hopeless Craig Dawson hauled down Manchester City striker Wilfried Bony in front of goal. As Swarbrick blew the whistle, he sent off Gareth McCauley instead of Dawson! The only explanation I can come up with for this horrendous gaffe is that Swarbrick felt sorry for Dawson because he’s such a terrible player that he decided to send off McCauley instead! Or maybe he had McCauley on his Premier League fantasy team and didn’t want the points deduction.
Harry Kane’s phenomenal record this season continued as Tottenham beat Leicester 4-3. The 21-year-old England striker has now scored 19 Premier League goals this season. There is much talk of the young lad heading off to Real Madrid this summer but frankly I don’t think he’s good enough. Racking up the goals against dreadful opposition such as QPR and Leicester doesn’t exactly mean that your good enough to replace Karim Benzema as Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale’s striking partner.
Liverpool’s setback was personally uncomfortable but the pain was numbed slightly when I got to see one of my favorite managers return to the Premier League. Sixty seven year old Dutch manager Dick Advocaat took charge of the sinking ship that is Sunderland as they painfully lost to a West Ham side who themselves have shown a drastic dip in form, after their early season heroics. Jermain Defoe, once a reliable striker, showed that he is a joke after a horrendous miss that sent the ball dangerously close to the lady munching Fish and Chips in row Z.
Well that’s it folks! Till next week when I talk about how terrible England were in their European Championship qualifier.