Rescinded Red

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

Sunday EPL Results: The Deuce Runs Loose on Chelsea

156202256_22681c61afNewcastle 1 – 5 Liverpool: Liverpool emphatically guaranteed they will be title leaders by Christmas.  How bad does your defense need to be for a team playing two holding midfielders and leading the line with Dirk Kuyt to score five goals?  That is with Shay Given’s brilliance maintaining reason.

Fulham 2 – 2 Chelsea: Clint “Deuce” Dempsey played up to his nickname, dueling Frank Lampard to a stalemate in the West London derby.  Chelsea had more chances, but did not use them.  Scolari’s men have taken just 10 of their last 21 possible points.

Blackburn 2 – 2 Manchester City: I flipped this one off with about five minutes remaining.  Oops.  Daniel Sturridge and Robinho in injury time spoiled a competent performance from Big Sam’s boys.  City are two points above the relegation zone and Blackburn are two points below.

Arsenal 1 – 0 Portsmouth: It was one-nil to the Arsenal, but there wasn’t much to sing about.  The Gunners managed just one goal against Portsmouth’s porous defense, and that was from a defender.  Far from the beautiful game, Arsenal’s current group plays with neither invention nor competence in any facet of the game.  Relegation candidates Portsmouth have lost four straight.

West Brom 2 – 0 Tottenham: Tottenham succumbed from two late goals, but West Brom’s victory over the ten-man side was deserved.  Harry Redknapp, bizarrely, questioned the ref’s competency while admitting the penalty call. 

Everton 3 – 0 Sunderland: Without a healthy striker, Everton needed goals from midfield.  Fortunately, that midfield contains Cahill, Fellaini and Mikel Arteta, scorer of two early goals in this match.  Ricky Sbragia’s deal at Sunderland is now permanent.  Unfortunately, his salubrious effect may not be.

West Ham 2 – 1 Stoke City: West Ham scored a resilient victory, coming back from an early goal.  They were aided by Stoke City, who dropped to ten after Ricardo Fuller saw red for taking a shot at his own captain, Andy Griffin.  

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Boxing Day Premier League Results

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Boxing Day is rough for all and, generally, Premier League defenders are not excepted.  With lapsed concentration get slapped haphazardly around the area, with goals raining in from every direction to the delight of spectators (See Chelsea 4 -4 Aston Villa).  This year, alas, only Manchester City and West Ham received the memo.

The Citizens stormed out of the relegation zone, beating Hull City so badly they looked as if they had met Joey Barton outside a McDonalds.  Robinho was fancy, but effective bagging a brace and imposing his flourish on an overmatched Hull defense.  The drubbing was so bad, Phil Brown refused to let Hull return to the dressing room.  Mark Hughes retrieved some of his pride after the loss to West Brom, but dousing the burner under his bottom after one match would be hasty.

West Ham won just their second Premier League victory in their last 13 matches, but it was impressive.  Carlton Cole and Craig Bellamy penetrated the casual and sloppy Portsmouth back line.  How does a team coached by Tony Adams concede nine goals in three matches?  Perhaps, they were too busy packing.

Arsenal drew Aston Villa 2-2 in the tastiest tie of the day, leaving Villa a three-point advantage for fourth place.  Martin O’Neill’s men comprehensively outplayed every Arsenal partisan on the pitch, except the goal post.  Arsenal then, inexplicably, went 2-0 up.  William Gallas gave away a legit penalty in the 65th minute, and Zat Knight, of all people, knocked in an injury-time equalizer.  Both sides could have won.  Both could have lost.  It was the fairest result.

United were big in Japan, and Carlos Tevez was just big enough to score the late winner against Stoke City.  United have scored just three goals in their past five Premier League matches, however they have not conceded and earned three 1-0 victories.  Given Liverpool and Chelsea’s inconsistency of late, Man U could be title favorites if they pick up their games in hand.

Liverpool’s Robbie Keane can be dangerous on a hot run, which he appears to have hit.  His two second-half goals in the 3-0 win against Bolton, as well as his equalizer last weekend against Arsenal have kept Liverpool on top of the table, shocking since this was their first December victory in all competitions.

The other contenders, Chelsea, earned their first home victory since Nov. 1 with their 2-0 defeat of West Brom.  Drogba received the central role, and scored his first league goal since March after three minutes.  Trim, reliable Frank scored in first-half injury time.  Chelsea put the game away.

Wigan vanquished Newcastle 2-1, with Ryan Taylor again tormenting the barcodes.  Approximately 80,000 combined people witnessed Tottenham – Fulham and Sunderland 0 – Blackburn 0.  They went home profoundly bored.

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Saturday EPL Results: Steed, Big Sam and Ricky

sunderland-v-liverpool-1Hull City 1 – 4 Sunderland: Steed Malbranque had a goal and two assists.  How long before Ricky Sbragia gets the permanent job?

Bolton 2 – 1 Portsmouth: Much less impressive for Portsmouth than it looks.  Could Adams suck them into the relegation fight after January player losses?

Fulham 3 – 0 Middlesbrough: A workman like effort for Fulham, with a fair reward.  The Boro have just three points from their last six matches.

Blackburn 3 – 0 Stoke City: Big Sam engenders the new manager bounce.  With winnable games coming up, he could have them out of the relegation zone by New Years Day.

West Ham 0 – 1 Aston Villa: Both teams played hard, my man. Both teams played hard.  Lucas Neill’s sublime own goal deflection proved, without a doubt, why he’s worth £70,000 a week.

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Big Sam Allardyce Replaces Paul Ince at Blackburn

sam-allardyceSam Allardyce will take over as Blackburn manager, replacing the recently departed Paul Ince.  The former Bolton and Newcastle manager signed a three-year contract with the club today.

Allardyce was tremendously successful as Bolton manager from 1999 to 2007, promoting the club from Division One to the Premier League in two seasons and turning it into a consistent top-half of the table performer.

He left Bolton for Newcastle at the end of the 2006-7 season, believing the Geordie club had better resources to win trophies.  Allardyce left the club “by mutual consent” in Jan. 2008, after the club earned just 30 points from his 24 matches in charge.

Big Sam seems fitting for Blackburn.  Allardyce may look like a scrubber, but he’s an astute manager for a smaller club.  His fitness regime keeps players fit.  He has displayed superb man-management skills, assimilating and rejuvenating other managers’ problems at a discount, such as Anelka and Diouf.  His tactics may be a cynical assault on the sensibilities, but they are effective.

Allardyce isn’t the man to push a mediocre club such as Newcastle over the top, but he can keep a small club such as Blackburn competitive and, most importantly right now, in the Premier League.

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Headlines: English Women Don’t Use Bidets

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English women don’t wash their genitalia, says Napoli president. (Dirty Tackle)

The seventies were a pretty swanky time in Germany, fast forward to thirty seconds. (The Original Winger)

Naming Rights Stadium will deliver “the ultimate fan experience.” (101 Great Goals)

Kaka does not have a hernia. (Gazzetta dello Sport)

A riveting Souness-Tugay partnership will take over for Paul Ince at Blackburn. (Football365)

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Blackburn Sack Paul Ince

paul_ince2_1Blackburn Rovers have fired manager Paul Ince, just 17 matches into his first season.

Ince lost 10 of the 17 matches, winning only three.  After an 11-match winless stretch, continued with last week’s 3-0 loss to Wigan, Blackburn sat second from bottom in the table, five points from safety.

The 41-year-old faced a difficult situation.  Mark Hughes spent shrewdly, maximized the talent available and pushed the small club into Europe.  He was fantastic.  Ince, in his wildest fantasy, could only replicate Hughes’ achievements, particularly after losing key contributors, such as David Bentley and Brad Friedel.

Blackburn’s trouble was not entirely Ince’s fault, but neither did he appear the man to right the course.  The players never fought for him.  Blackburn needed change.

Perhaps the one positive from this situation is that Ince, the first black manager in the Premier League, faced no racial disparagement. 

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Saturday EPL Results: United Escape Against Sunderland

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Manchester United 1 – 0 Sunderland: Sunderland conveniently picked the match after Keane leaves for their most steely performance of the season.  United outshot Sunderland 31-3 and finally took the advantage on a late Vidic header.

Arsenal 1 – 0 Wigan: Adebayor scored early.  Arsenal hit the post a few times.  Eboue was booed off the pitch.  The Gunners nearly cocked it up, but held on for three points.  Arsenal fans will take it.

Blackburn 1 – 3 Liverpool: This was close for most of the match, but Liverpool caught fire at the end.  Can Liverpool get by on midfield goals?  Winless in their last ten, how much more patience will Blackburn have for Ince?

Bolton 0 – 2 Chelsea: A solid Chelsea victory with little inspiration.  Anelka scored against his former club.  Deco dumped in an overrated scissor kick.  Chelsea has won six straight away at Bolton, without conceding.

Hull City 2 – 1 Middlesbrough: Boro took a late lead from Tuncay, but an own goal and a David Wheater penalty handed Hull the win.  Could Hull be playing in Europe next season?

Newcastle 2 – 2 Stoke City: Michael Owen scored two in the first 24 minutes.  Newcastle squandered the lead.  Shockingly, Joe Kinnear will likely face another conduct inquiry.

Fulham 1 – 1 Manchester City: The biggest club in the world started Darius Vassell up front, and again disappointed away from home.  Jimmy Bullard scored his first league goal of the season.  Fulham look quite frisky this season.

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Sunday/Monday EPL Results: The Roar of Robin Van Persie

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Chelsea 1 – Arsenal 2: Chelsea were best for a half.  Robin Van Persie was best for three minutes to give Arsenal the advantage.  They need to add some tooth up front in the transfer window.

Manchester City 0 – Manchester United 1: Waz got his 100th goal.  Ronaldo protected his coif.  Dimitar Berbatov was useless.  United picked up points on Chelsea and Liverpool.

Liverpool 0 – West Ham 0: The Hammer defense gave an uncharacteristically stern performance, holding Liverpool fruitless.  The Reds move into first place, but not impressively.  They still aren’t deep enough to rotate.

Tottenham 0 – Everton 1: God is great, but not for Harry Redknapp whose magic wears thin or for Yakubu, out for the season with an achilles tendon injury.  That may cost the Toffees a European place.

Portsmouth 3 – Blackburn 2: Pompey nearly blew their second two goal lead in four days, but Sean Davis’ substitute winner saved the victory.  Paul Ince is “frustrated, disappointed” and two points from safety.

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Sunday EPL Results: Spurs Out of the Drop Zone

aaron_lennonTottenham 1 – Blackburn 0: Pavlyuchenko scored early on a setup from Aaron Lennon, who apparently is on par with Theo Walcott.  Spurs withstood some late pressure, and have escaped, for now, the relegation zone.

Sunderland 0 – West Ham 1: Behrami defused a bit of the Zola pressure.  His goal gave the Hammers their first win in eight tries.  They need to get points now, as they don’t know who will be left come January.

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Sunday EPL Results: Sulk and Bent Braces

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Blackburn 0 – Chelsea 2: Chelsea did not have their best victory, but Blackburn were outmatched.  Nicolas Anelka scored five goals in a week.  Could anyone else look as unimpressive doing it?

Fulham 2 – Newcastle 1: It was a workman-like victory for Fulham, won by crafty Andy’s penalty-winning ability.  Newcastle have two points away from a possible eighteen.

Manchester City 1 – Tottenham 2: Bent built on his midweek form to continue Redknapp’s rollicking run of glory.  The cold weather has tempered City’s bluster and Brazilians, having lost three straight.

Aston Villa 1 – Middlesbrough 2: Villa had a chance to enter the top four, after Manchester United’s defeat at the Emireates.  Results like these hold Villa down.  They also keep the occasionally frisky Boro in the Premier League.

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