Jose Mourinho: skating on thin ice?

December 24, 2012 in La Liga

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On the face of it, a management career total of 40 defeats spread over 400 games in senior competition isn’t that bad a record - the envy of many even. The problem comes when your name is Jose Mourinho and you are the self-anointed ‘Special One’ sitting in the Real Madrid hot seat and charged with trying to stop that runaway Catalan juggernaut. In fairness to the Portuguese, he hasn’t done a bad job, securing the 2011/12 Primera División title, Madrid’s 32nd, to maintain an impressive record of winning a championship in each of the countries in which he has coached. That was then, though, and this is now.

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Ballsy Banter Roll Of Honour 2012: Player of the Year

December 21, 2012 in Awards

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We come to our fifth day, and it’s the big one. The category that sorts the men from the boys, the people that have risen above the rest to have the best year of their respective careers.

This category, is ‘Player of the Year’.

Let’s see who our esteemed panel have chosen in this instalment of this year’s ‘Roll Of Honour’.

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Ballsy Banter Roll of Honour 2012: Moment of the Year

December 18, 2012 in Awards

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We are on day two of the Roll of Honour 2012, and this brings a brand new category - Moment of the Year. Football is all about moments, those scenes that will last long in the memory - be it moments of joy, sorrow or complete mayhem. Let’s see what the panel picked.

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How do UEFA solve a problem like Europe?

December 3, 2012 in Europe

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The Champions League is arguably the greatest club competition in the world; a tournament steeped in history, graced by the world’s best players from years gone by, and has offered up some truly memorable games in its 57-year history, if we count the European Cup. It still offers that today, despite being bloated by the group stage. The Europa League, in comparison, has always been the problem child, the one who has not achieved the dizzy heights of its brother, and instead of being loved, it’s seen as a waste of time by both managers and fans. Michel Platini, the head of UEFA, has seemingly noticed this and has had some thoughts about the future of both competitions and has mooted the possibility of combining the two. Is this a good idea? And what else could they do to shake things up a bit?

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Where next for Gareth Bale?

November 30, 2012 in Premier League, Transfers

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Gareth Bale: the best Welsh player since Ryan Giggs. The similarities between the Manchester United legend and the new, younger ‘Welsh Wizard’ are there for everybody to see. Both were hailed as the future of Welsh football. In his peak, Giggs was a blistering left winger that induced a medical condition amongst defenders known as ‘twisted blood’, and at the moment, you would find it difficult to look past Bale when considering who you would call the best left winger in the Premier League. Gareth Bale has even adopted Ryan’s famous number 11 jersey for both club and country. The one thing that will remain starkly different about the two is that Ryan Giggs’ future had never been in doubt since his debut back in 1992 – he was going to be at Manchester United for the rest of his career. Gareth Bale, however, will not be spending another 10 or 15 years at Tottenham Hotspur, no matter what AVB may say to the media - sorry Spurs fans, that is a fact, and it’s not ‘if’, but rather ‘when’ he leaves. Tottenham fans will call it ‘lack of loyalty’, but Gareth Bale will call it ‘ambition’.

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