Our candidates for the Everton job

Assistant Duncan Ferguson should be manager on interim basis, but do you agree?

The Masters day one preview and tournament overview

Hello and good evening, here we talk about day one of The Cazoo Masters, plus we offer our thought’s on the tournament and who will reign supreme come the end of the week. Visit our website; the-sports-buff.com

— Read on brandnewtube.com/watch/the-masters-day-one-preview-and-tournament-overview_VBDQvp5O2B64TVW.html

FA Cup round up and fourth round draw

Hello and good afternoon, in this video we take a look at today’s and yesterdays FA Cup matches, where there were shocks a plenty. Visit our website; the-sports-buff.com

— Read on brandnewtube.com/watch/fa-cup-round-up-and-fourth-round-draw_9nTzcJupGc5GhTJ.html

Power to the players?

World sport, and in particular football, has changed so much in the last decade, or maybe two decades. Once upon a time, in the world of football, the football manager was the source of all power and authority.

Brian Clough and Sir Alex Ferguson are the two names I associate with power and authority are these two legendary managers, who are the embodiment of how a manager should be.

In the modern day, there are Pep Guardiola, Jurgen Klopp and Thomas Tuchel who are three men who know to handle players. I raise this issue of the need to be handle players, becase player power has become too much.

Paul Pogba, seems to be the most obvious one, but Antonio Rudiger, Kylian Mbappe are examples of other players too, who are the epitome of player power getting out of hand. I am sure there are more, many more.

When Bosman, fought his case in the 90’s in that high profile case, which ultimately saw the Bosman rule being introduced, then one shouldn’t be too surprised of the current state of the game today.

Too many players, are winding contracts down, and they can as it’s been made acceptable almost. The signing on fees, the players can get, the bigger wages they can get, it needs to be looked at.

Football players are human beings and I get that, but lower than the football pyramid, they don’t have such luxuries. I miss the days of Sir Alex, not taking players holding clubs to ransom.

Pogba, be it through his agent is holding Man United to ransom, Fergie wouldn’t have resigned him for one, but two he would have been off by now! Pep, to his credit, addressed the issue with Leroy Sane and Ferran Torres admirably, both stated they wanted moves and law behold one player is in Catalonia and the other Bavaria respectively.

My two cents on the matter there, but do you agree?

What Tottenham and Liverpool have in common

I know what you’re thinking. How on God’s green earth, are Tottenham and Liverpool alike? One side has 19 Premier League titles and six Champions League titles, and Tottenham have zero.

As impressive as those achievements have been , Liverpool can say they have enjoyed relative success in the last five years, I can’t help but see some similarities to the current Liverpool team and the Tottenham Hotspur team of the late 2010’s

Far fetched? Well, let me argue my point, then of course you can be the judge. That Spurs team of the late 2010’s was always the brides maid and never the bride kind of team, but like with Liverpool’s current they didn’t have squad depth and that hurt The Lilywhites and is hurting The Reds currently too.

Liverpool, (to keep the analogy going) walked down the altar and had their big day, even at Tottenham’s expense on one occasion too. The Anfield side had a trophy laden period, winning the Premier League, Champions League, Club World Cup and Super Cup in a short time, but currently, I am pessimistic.

The 19-time Premier League winners, largely have the same side, they have tried to make subtle tweaks, but upfront and a right-back for example, there is no quality back up options. Even at left-back, there is cover, but with the greatest respect Tsimikas won’t be anywhere near the first team is fit.

Liverpool have enjoyed some success, so I won’t be too harsh, but Manchester City for example in this Christmas period, have won the title (I feel due to their squad depth, premature yes, are City catchable? Well,no) and The Merseyside outfit Liverpool have lost the league title due to this same reason ( squad depth, which is minimal).

In the case of City, they have Billions and Billions behind them, I know, but just some financial shrewdness in the window for Liverpool who buy before they sell these days, will help them get back to being competitive . Shop in the Championship, which they did do so with Neil Robertson and look how that fared? The same could be done in the striking department. Ben Bereton of Blackburn Rovers, maybe could do the Firminho role?

Don’t knock it Liverpool before you tried it, I leave you with that thought.

Will they ever learn?

The signing of Ferran Torres, all be it a great signing, is a sign Barcelona refuse to learn from old mistakes.

For the seven years I have been a football writer/sports writer, I have written about many topics, but no topic irritates me more than that of FC Barcelona. Barca, as we know football fans, are one of the best clubs in Spanish and European history. Twenty-six La Liga titles, Five UEFA Champions Leagues, gives you some indication of the colossus we’re talking about.

Pre Covid, The Catalans were at the dizzy heights of being one of the most riches clubs in football, and world sport too. But that old chestnut Covid, which has been responsible in the economic sense for a lot of big businesses feeling the pinch and ultimately falling into debt, Barca were no different.

Of course the blame was put at former President Jose Bartomeu’s door for Barca’s crippling debts , and in part for good reason, but Joanne Laporta who was unanimously brought back to be president by the Barcelona voters (fans), has been far from brilliant when dealing with matters at Camp Nou.

O how he spoke at bringing Barcelona back to its glory days and how Lionel Messi (who was growing discontent), will be able to stay .. we know how that ended up. The Argentine maestro left with a teary press conference, went to Paris and off into the sunset he went.

It could have been all so different, had they got rid of Antoine Griezmann and Samuel Umtiti too. The French defender Umtiti, who is still on the books of The Blaugrana, has been seen as public enemy number one as his wages, not only made Messi have to leave, but blocked new signings being registered.

Aguero, Depay Garcia were only able to play due to Pique and Busquets (amongst other senior players taking crazy pay cuts). Surely they would learn their lesson, sell before they can buy, right? Wrong!

The signing of Ferran Torres for £55 million, plus add-ons is good money for a very good player, but they can’t afford him! Yes Mr Laporta, we know you want to tell the world that Barcelona are back, but we’re not stupid.

O how the Barca fans, were wishing they marked a cross against Victor Font’s name come ballet day. Barcelona , have done the equivalent of going to a company like Wonga (who gave loans to anyone) and are boasting of some new riches that they have found.

It’s quite simple, Torres is a Sergio Aguero replacement in the making, but you can’t play him, until you sell some players. Coutinho has been difficult to sell as well as the aforementioned Umtiti.

They can’t ask Pique and Busquets to go any lower, otherwise they will be playing for free or close to it, the same could be said about Jordi Alba too. The veteran left-back, I am sure took a pay cut too when asked to introduce the new signings of the summer in. The headlines that Joanne Laporta will want to create is that Barcelona are back, but until Ferran Torres is elelgible to play, then don’t be deceived by the smoke screen.

Here we go again

England are in a stick and twist situation, but it doesn’t have to be that way

Hello and good evening sports fans, I have a question. The question is, why do we do this? When it comes to supporting the national team (England) in this case the cricket team, why do we build them up to be world beaters and knock them back down, and mercilessly?

England under the captaincy of Joe Root, have been Jekyll and Hyde, that’s putting it kindly. So, when The Three Lions set off for the test series Down Under, can one be forgiven to think, would be it 4-1 or 5-0 to Australia?

Of course home advantage, and bar India who produced a superb series performance, Australia have made Down Under a fortress. The bouncy tracks, or the inconsistent bounce too, has given the English batsmen nightmares.

England’a batsmen, have fallen like a deck of cards, the bowlers as a result have had their work cut out, this is all too familiar to past tales when England have visited arch-rival territory.

A constant change of team selection, not knowing who their best opening batsmen, or their number one spinner is, can you honestly expect anything less than a mauling? Australia on the other hand have a settled side, Nathan Lyon will be the number one spinner come rain or shine.

Now people will say, he’s the only real spinner that they have, Adam Zampa is just one player of many that are even playing in the BBL comes to mind. Australia’s opening batsmen might have changed, but Warner has remained, with England, it’s like they change from series to series .. both of them.

To find a combo like Strauss and Cook I know his hard, but they will need patience. Also, England missed a trick, Reece Topley is out in Australia and Saqib Mahmood too, but neither played in the series, begs the question, why?

Topley is tall, a left-arm option too. England’s attack, bar Mark Wood is too one dimensional, but we said that last time, England have a one-dimensioned attack, but they have done nothing about it.

So The Ashes has been lost, so Joe Root should be sacked right? Not really. For a captain, he’s young and is learning on the job. I feel, faith needs to be shown and a set strategy is needed.

Five batsmen, one all rounder and bowlers. So, let’s put it this way, usually a team should line up four quick bowlers, one spinner and all-rounder. England had Mark Wood, Ollie Robinson, James Anderson and Jack Leach as their front line spinner.

To be fair that’s not a bad bowling attack and England do have good bowlers, but they’re for English conditions. When Joffra Archer was available, he caused fear in Australia hearts, but they can’t solely rely on him, sadly his injury record is left to be desired.

To wrap up our conclusion, England are not going to be World Test Champions and they are not the worst side in test cricket, please don’t make them out to be either. The Three Lions have a young side, they will grow from this, but these players need some better quality of pitches to play on, meaning for bracing themselves for Australian conditions.

Find good players in the County circuit, and stick with them when they earn their chance. Greame Swan became the best off-spinner in the world at the time.

Wednesday’s football round up

(Pictured) Matteo Kovacic, will be a player looking to help Chelsea in the coming weeks.
Hello and good evening, here we take a look at Wednesdays football news, including the carabao cup.