My football

Friday, December 28, 2007

Who is Fabio Capello?

Opera buff, art collector, a travel connoisseur and master football tactician. Fabio Capello, the man appointed England's new coach, is all of those things and more.

The 61-year-old Italian might not seem the archetypal football boss, but he has an unprecedented level of success.

World Football

Alan Green presents a look back at some of the most important issues of the year on World Football. Including an exclusive interview with FIFA vice-president Jack Warner.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

How Many More Italian Football Fans Have To Die?

The world of football is again mourning another tragic loss of life tonight after Italian police shot dead a 26 year old Lazio supporter during a disturbance between rival sets of fans. The dead fan was 26 year old disc jockey Gabriele Sandri who was amongst a group of Lazio fans who got into an altercation with a travelling group of Juventus fans at a motorway service station outside Arezzo in Italy. As a riot between the two sets of fans seemed about to get out of hand an Italian policeman seems to have fired a shot which tragically and accidentally hit Mr. Sandri and killed him. Lazio's game against Inter Milan was subsequently called off after news of the fatal shooting made it's way to the clubs and Italian government. In another dark day for Italian football the senseless killing of an unarmed football fan wasn't the only ugly incident as Atalanta fans fought with police before and during the first seven minutes of their club's game with AC Milan and after trying to storm the pitch the referee abandoned the game due to concerns for the safety of all concerned. Lazio's city neighbours AS Roma also cancelled their game in Rome against Cagliari in a show of solidarity for the fans of Lazio. Italian football seems to lurch from one murder to another, one crisis to another and there seems to be no-one either in the country's football administration or government willing to take harsh enough steps to combat the growing problems in Italian society which are manifesting themselves amongst football supporters. For too long has football hooliganism been called the "English disease" by continental Europeans happy to tar English football fans with the sins of their predecessors thirty years ago. Italy has an enormous problem and it's time someone took up the reins of power and sorted it out before another innocent football fan or policeman is murdered in the name of football.

Friday, November 9, 2007


David Beckham is set to be handed an England recall today - raising the frustrating prospect of the former captain ending his international career one short of a century.
Beckham is currently on 97 caps - and having confirmed his fitness to Steve McClaren during the coach's whistle-stop trans-Atlantic trip last weekend, he can expect to add another appearance to his tally in next Friday's friendly with Austria.
Although a starting berth against Croatia five days later is by no means certain as England conclude their Euro 2008 qualifying campaign at Wembley, the odds would be on Beckham being involved at some point, taking him to 99.
However, should England fail to reach next summer's finals - and the matter is now out of their hands - Beckham could find himself surplus to requirements by the time the Three Lions head into a planned February friendly with Switzerland.
That, of course, is a fixture which may mark the start of what could be a totally new era, with a new coach.
Beckham, McClaren and the rest of the England squad will hope such a scenario does not occur - but they are reliant on Israel preventing Russia winning in Tel Aviv next Saturday to blow the whole qualification picture wide open.
So - because the former Middlesbrough manager cannot know whether next week's trip to Austria will be the prelude to a Euro 2008 mission there next summer, or the only chance England will have to experience the hospitality of the co-hosts - he has no option but to select the strongest squad available.
Rio Ferdinand, suspended for the Croatia game, is not likely to be considered. But Micah Richards will almost certainly be included despite lingering fitness doubts - while McClaren faces big calls over Ashley Cole, who has not played a game since injuring his ankle during last month's win over Estonia, and captain John Terry.
Ordinarily, Terry would not be considered amid an ongoing absence with a knee problem he exacerbated in training before the defeat against Russia in Moscow.
But with Ferdinand out, Jamie Carragher retired, Wes Brown operating at right-back for Manchester United, Ledley King still injured, Jonathan Woodgate and Michael Dawson badly out of form and Joleon Lescott virtually untried at international level - save for his hesitant performance at left-back against Russia - McClaren's central defensive cupboard is looking pretty bare.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

England to bid for 2018 World Cup

The FA made an attempt to stage the tournament in 2006 but lost out as Germany won the right to play host.
But it believes the time is right to bid again after Fifa, the sport's world governing body, ended its controversial rotation policy earlier this week.
England will face strong competition to host the event, with Australia, China, Russia, United States, Belgium and the Netherlands, and Mexico all interested.

Chelsea 4-3 Leicester

Gareth McAuley's header gave Leicester an early lead, but the home side went in at the break in front, thanks to two calm finishes from captain Lampard.
Keeper Marton Fulop kept Leicester in the game and DJ Campbell's header set up a tense finale at Stamford Bridge.
Carl Cort's tap-in put the Foxes ahead, but Shevchenko with a rasping shot and a Lampard header turned the tie.

Friday, October 26, 2007


Former Italy boss Marcello Lippi admits the chances of him coaching in England are slim because of the language barrier.
The former Juventus coach has been out of management since leading Italy to World Cup glory last summer, but is now keen to return to club football.
Lippi was linked with the likes of Juve, Real Madrid and Chelsea over the summer, but insists he is no rush.
And despite his love of Premier League football, he is aware his lack of English will make it difficult for him to take charge of a club there.
"I am not thinking of any club at the moment," said Lippi. "I've only just realised the fact that I want to return to work.
"I love the Premier League but I don't speak English and considering the way I see and experience football this is a big handicap, because a coach above all guides players and my primary concept is the group."

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