Rescinded Red

Oh the media monkeys and their junket junkies will invite you to their plastic pantomime. Throw their invites away.

What Next for Arsenal?

It’s hard to imagine four minutes of football altering an entire season, but, unfortunately, that is what happened at the Emirates on Wednesday.  Two shocking gaffs, two goals and two lost points against their arch-rivals have sent Arsenal’s present and, perhaps, future into turmoil.

The loss leaves Arsenal in third place on goal difference, but with Manchester United, two points back, having a game in hand.  They now have dropped ten points from ten matches, seven of them against teams in tenth place or below.  The other three came at home to Hull City.  Arsenal has not played Liverpool, Chelsea nor Manchester United yet.  The facile portion of the schedule is past them.

They are only six points off the leaders, but must gain ground on Liverpool, Chelsea and likely Manchester United.  They must also stave off a surging Aston Villa to maintain Champions League status.  Their title ambitions seem, if not finished, doubtful.  Their concession record projects negatively for other trophies.

Arsenal’s form has underlined preseason concerns about squad depth, particularly in central midfield and defense.  Neither Denilson nor Song fills the versatile shoes of Vieira or the slightly less ones of Flamini.  Kolo Toure cannot cover both central defensive positions and William Gallas has been woeful.  It’s well to wrangle a bargain in the transfer window, but the few extra million required for a suitable defensive alignment is justified, when facing the loss of players and prestige from not making the Champions League.

The Sun talks of whole-scale squad changes, but Arsenal don’t have the depth.

There are the physical concerns, but Arsenal’s mentality scares supporters as well.  William Gallas has been anything but a coherent Capi this season.  Youth and inexperience account for much, but Almunia and Gallas are both 31 and Clichy has been a first team regular.  Arsenal lack leadership, with no natural resource to find it.

Arsenal are entering their fourth season without trophies and both the present and future look ominous, not the greatest prognosis when you are trying to keep Cesc Fabregas.


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Seattle Sounders FC to Host Reality Show, Open Tryouts

In November, Seattle Sounders FC will offer one lucky individual the chance to train with Freddie Ljungberg, as a member of their MLS roster.

As part of a reality show, the Sounders will host public tryouts in three Washington cities.  A finalist from each city, as voted by fans, will receive a tryout to make the club in February.

Is this a cool engagement of the local community or more evidence of MLS’ troubles attracting talent, domestic or foreign?

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Headlines: Man U are Most Petulant in Premier League

Manchester United are Premier League Dissent Champions (FourFourTwo)

Wayne Rooney spits on a photographer, doesn’t write letter of apology (Guardian)

World’s Worst Soccer Team Finally Earns Point (Deadspin)

When in doubt, blame Ramos (The Sun)

The two-finger gesture explained (EPLTalk)

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Best Goal on Wednesday: Bentley vs. Mareval

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The Onion Bag: Chaos in North London

The Onion Bag: Chaos in North London

Here is my latest post from The Big Lead.  A roundup of Wednesday’s Premier League action.

Filed under: Football, Soccer

Headlines: Liverpool for Sale? No Comment.

Gillet stays mum on Liverpool sale. (Independent)

Ten surprising Premier League stats (EPLTalk)

Would Maradona pass a fit and proper persons test? (The Spoiler)

Beckham to Milan Photoshop Gallery (Guardian)

Spurs one step behind Arsenal, will build 60,000 seat stadium (4thegame)

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Ronaldo Finished in Europe

Ronaldo, nearly recovered from a horrific knee injury for A.C. Milan eight months ago, will return to Brazil, likely to play for Flamengo, where he has been training.

“If everything is okay, I want to stay,” Ronaldo said.  “I’ve been in Europe for 16 years.  Flamengo are my favorite, but I don’t want to play there as a favor.  I want to deserve to play there.”

Ronaldo will reject an offer to join former teammate Claude Makelele in early retirement at PSG.  He had stated unilateral interest in joining Man City.

The Brazilian has played in Europe since signing for PSV Eindhoven in 1994.  He also played for Barcelona, Inter Milan, Real Madrid and A.C. Milan.

He isn’t healthy.  His body would likely self-destruct after 15-20 games.  But, he scored goals when healthy at Milan.  Costing nothing, it’s hard to believe he didn’t get a better offer in Europe.

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The Onion Bag: Maradona Returns!

The Big Lead » Blog Archive » The Onion Bag: Maradona Returns!

Here is my latest post for The Big Lead on Argentina’s shock hiring of Diego Maradona to coach the national team.

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Beckham Loan Cancels Galaxy’s Australia Tour

David Beckham’s loan move to A.C. Milan claimed its first casualty for the L.A. Galaxy, who have been forced to cancel their friendly with Australia’s Queensland Roar on Dec. 11.  

“We were not in a position to absolutely guarantee David Beckham’s availability,” the Galaxy said.  “To avoid disappointment for the fans it was decided to postpone the game.”

Apparently, Australian fans aren’t titillated by the sight of Edson Buddle or Eddie Lewis.

The Galaxy will keep their date in New Zealand with the Oceania All-Star Team on Dec. 6.

Postponing a friendly isn’t huge.  But, it begs the question, is David Beckham growing the MLS brand worldwide or just lining MLS pockets?

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More McClaren Dutch Accent

Steve Mclaren uh…. still struggling with uh…. his native language uh….

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October 2008
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