Friday, January 13, 2017

All the very latest football news and gossip across Europe!




With the January transfer window in full swing, there is plenty of transfer talk and a few deals have been done! Many clubs across Europe are doing their best to strengthen their squads as the second half of the season gets underway. Some clubs are trying to push on in an attempt to lift some silverware, others to consolidate their current situation, and needless to say their are plenty of clubs busy looking to bring in new personnel as they attempt to save their seasons!

Here is a round up of all the latest football news/gossip across Europe today, which includes the likes of: West Ham, Chelsea, Crystal Palace, Dimitri Payet, Jack Wilshire, Alvaro Morata, Real Madrid, Lyon, Atletico Madrid, Virgil van Dijk, Patrice Evra, Robbie Brady, Southampton, Everton, PSG, Michy Batshuayi, Robert Snodgrass, Morgan Schneiderlin, Carl Jenkinson, Liverpool, Sevilla, Middlesbrough, Fulham and Slaven Bilic to name but a few!


Dimitri Payet will be sold by West Ham this month. The Hammers will hold out for the highest price they can get for the 29-year-old, who is refusing to play for the club, according to manager Slaven Bilic. Payet has reportedly told West Ham he wants to return to France for "personal reasons" - Daily Mirror

Premier League leaders Chelsea will move for 29-year-old West Ham playmaker Dimitri Payet, who Hammers boss Slaven Bilic says is refusing to play for the club - The Sun

PSG want to sign Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi. The Belgian, who signed from Marseille for £33m in the summer, is yet to start a Premier League game for Antonio Conte's side, making 12 substitute appearances - L'Equipe (French nationwide daily newspaper devoted to sport)

Manchester City, Everton and Italian side AC Milan are monitoring the future of Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere. The 25-year-old is on loan at Bournemouth and his contract with the Gunners expires next season - Daily Star

According to latest rumours coming from Italian sources, Liverpool and German international defensive midfielder Emre Can, who turned 23 just yesterday, has become a main target for Juventus. Can is currently on a deal with The Reds until June 2018, the player is likely to cost about 16 million euros - transfermarketweb.com

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has been speaking to Mesut Ozil's agent, and says he's very relaxed about the contract situation with the German - skysports.com

Crystal Palace are close to signing former 35 year-old Manchester United left-back Patrice Evra - Sky in Italy, via Sky Sports

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is preparing to make a bid for 24 year-old Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata - OK Diario (Spanish digital newspaper Okdiario.com)

Jeff Schlupp has joined Crystal Palace on a four and a half year deal from Leicester City. He will be available to play in Palace’s match at West Ham tomorrow - skysports.com

Everton have confirmed the signing of Morgan Schneiderlin from Manchester United - skysports.com

Crystal Palace striker Christian Benteke will block any efforts by manager Sam Allardyce to offload him to West Brom - Daily Mirror

Sevilla are the latest club to cool their interest in signing Liverpool's Mamadou Sakho. The Reds are thought to want around £20m for the French international centre back. However, several clubs, including Southampton and Swansea, have been unwilling to match his wages, understood to be around £105,000 a week - skysports.com

Jesse Lingard has agreed a new Manchester United contract worth £95,000 per week- skysports.com

Eddie Howe has said there have been no talks with Chelsea about John Terry going to Bournemouth on loan - skysports.com

Lyon are the only club trying to sign Manchester United winger Memphis Depay, 22, on a permanent deal but have offered substantially less than the £15m asking price - ESPN and skysports.com

Arsenal full-back Carl Jenkinson looks set to go on loan to Crystal Palace, with a deal expected in the next two or three days. Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger said: “With Carl, yes, there is a possibility that he will move, in the next two or three days.” - skysports.com

Stoke manager Mark Hughes has revealed talks have reopened with West Brom in a bid to finally thrash out a deal for Saido Berahino. West Brom Head Coach Tony Pulis says it's not just Stoke interested in signing striker Saido Berahino - skysports.com

Burnley have made an offer worth up to £13m for Norwich winger Robbie Brady, 24. The Republic of Ireland international is also wanted by Crystal Palace and Sunderland - Daily Mirror

Burnley and Leicester have bid around £10m for Norwich midfielder Robbie Brady. The 24-year-old is reportedly valued at £13m by the EFL Championship side, with Hull City due 25 per cent of any deal. Crystal Palace, Sunderland and Aston Villa are also reportedly interested in Brady - Daily Mail

Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk, 25, is believed to be a transfer target for Everton - Daily Star

Dutch international winger Luciano Narsingh (26), has officially joined Swansea City from PSV Eindhoven on a deal until June 2019, after four seasons with the Eredivisie club - transfermarketweb.com

Wolfsburg are weighing up the chance of signing 29 year-old Argentinian forward Mauro Matias Zarate from Fiorentina. The former Inter Milan, Lazio and West Ham player has a contract with Fiorentina until June 2018, and has recently started new contract talks with the Serie A club - Corriere dello Sport - Stadio (Italian national sports newspaper)

Simone Zaza has accepted an offer from Valencia, according to Sky in Italy. The Juventus striker, currently on loan at West Ham, will move on loan to the Spanish side for 2m euros, with an obligation to buy for an extra 16m euros - Sky in Italy

Crystal Palace boss Sam Allardyce has made an initial £6m bid for Sunderland full-back Patrick van Aanholt, 26, who is rated at £10m by the Black Cats - Daily Mail

David Moyes has admitted Sunderland have knocked back a bid from Crystal Palace for Patrick van Aanholt. Sky sources understand the bid to be in the region of £6-7m - skysports.com

Hull City have announced the signing of Everton's froward Oumar Niasse on a six-month loan and midfielder Evandro Goebel on a permanent deal from Porto. Everton forward Niasse will be available for the clash with Bournemouth tomorrow, while the Goebel deal is down to international clearance.
Niasse, who has had a torrid time since joining Everton from Lokomotic Moscow, will be at the KCOM Stadium until the end of the season - skysports.com

Aitor Karanka would like to keep Ben Gibson at Middlesbrough for his entire career amid speculation in the British press that Chelsea are lining him up as a £30m replacement for John Terry - skysports.com

Middlesbrough are closing in on the signing of Bojan from Stoke. It's understood Stoke would want around £12m if the deal were to be a permanent move. West Brom made an enquiry earlier in the transfer window. Daily Star and skysports.com

West Brom are set to join West Ham in the race for Hull's Robert Snodgrass. The Scot, 29, has rejected a new contract offer at Hull, while West Ham have had a bid rejected for Snodgrass - Daily Mirror

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino admits Tom Carroll could be set to leave the club, due to a lack of first team opportunities - skysports.com

Derby County midfielder Will Hughes has signed a new contract with the club until 2020 - skysports.com

Championship side Leeds have rejected offers of £7m for full-back Charlie Taylor, 23, from Premier League sides West Brom, Middlesbrough and Crystal Palace - Guardian

Atletico Madrid midfielder Tiago has revealed that he turned down three offers from elsewhere after coach Diego Simeone told him to stay at the club. Recent reports from Spain claimed that the Portuguese midfielder, who is out of contract at the end of the season, was contemplating leaving the club to head to China- skysports.com

Sheffield United have announced the signing of Daniel Lafferty from Burnley with the defender penning a two-and-a-half year deal at Bramall Lane for an undisclosed fee - skysports.com

Norwich boss Alex Neil has been chatting with the media and has confirmed the club are in talks with Swansea over the transfer of Martin Olsson - skysports.com

Brentford’s valuation of striker Scott Hogan has still not been met, despite bids having been received from more than one club. Hogan trained yesterday and today and will be in the squad to face Newcastle at Griffin Park tomorrow. It is understood the club value him at around £15m, with a 30 per cent sell on clause due to his former club Rochdale - skysports.com

Aston Villa are eyeing up a bid for Fulham's Tom Cairney. The midfielder, 25, is valued at around £10m, and was sold by Villa manager Steve Bruce while at Hull three years ago. Newcastle are also reportedly keen on Cairney - Daily Mirror

Fulham midfielder Jozabed has joined La Liga side Celta Vigo on loan for the remainder of the season - skysports.com

Fulham manager Slavisa Jokanovic has confirmed that Chris Martin is available again for selection after refusing to play since Boxing Day - skysports.com

David Davis has signed a new three-and-a-half year deal with Birmingham City, the club announced this afternoon - skysports.com

Aberdeen have rejected a reported £500,000 bid from Cardiff for winger Jonny Hayes - skysports.com

Doncaster Rovers have signed goalkeeper Ian Lawlor from Premier League giants Manchester City. The 22-year-old failed to make a senior appearance during seven years at City, although he has gained first-team experience during loan spells at Barnet and Bury - skysports.com



Monday, December 19, 2016

All the very latest football news and gossip across Europe!




With the January transfer window opening in just two weeks time, many clubs across Europe will being doing their best to strengthen their squads, in an effort to lead them to glorious victory or save them from glorious failure, come the end of the season!

Here is a round up of all the latest football news/gossip across Europe today, which includes the likes of: Manchester United, Chelsea, Barcelona, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Lionel Messi, Louis van Gaal, Bayern Munich, West Ham, Marseille, Leonardo Bonucci, Morgan Schneiderlin, Mathieu Flamini, Santos, Inter, Juventus and Slaven Bilic to name but a few!


Zlatan Ibrahimovic is ready to extend his stay at Manchester United and snub a £120m offer from China - The Sun

Bayern Munich have beaten Chelsea to the signing of Hoffenheim centre-back Niklas Sule, according to Bild. The 21-year-old defender was set to be the subject of a January move from the Premier League leaders, who were reportedly willing to bid £30m.
However Chelsea’s pursuit of Sule is at an end after Bayern agreed an undisclosed fee with Hoffenheim for the defender - Bild (German tabloid newspaper)

Barcelona vice-president Jordi Mestre has revealed that the club are looking to tie up Lionel Messi’s new contract in the first few months of 2017. Messi’s current deal is set to enter its final 18 months and the Camp Nou giants are keen to ensure he stays at the club beyond the summer of 2018 - Movistar (Spanish communications operator)

Juventus are still 'dreaming' of signing Alexis Sanchez and will reportedly bid for the unsettled Arsenal forward next summer - The Sun

Arsenal are planning to break the £200,000-a-week barrier at the club to keep striker Alexis Sanchez - Daily Mail

Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel, 29, is in talks with Ligue 1 side Marseille, after being frozen out by Antonio Conte - Daily Mirror

Axel Witsel has reportedly rejected an SOS call from Chelsea boss Antonio Conte as he prepares to join Juventus. The Belgian midfielder’s contract at Zenit St-Petersburg expires at the end of the season, with a 2017 move to Italian champions Juventus already agreed.

Inter Milan are one of a number of clubs interested in Manchester United midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin, 27, who has played just eight times for Jose Mourinho's side this season - Calciomercato (Italian football news site)

Everton have issued a 'come and get him' invitation to try to unload England midfielder Ross Barkley - Daily Express

Crystal Palace could release midfielder Mathieu Flamini, 32, in January. He has been given permission to return to Marseille - Daily Mirror

John Terry is at the centre of a £16million tug of war between two Chinese Super League Clubs with managers who have Chelsea connections. Guangzhou Evergrande and Shanghai Shenhua both interested in signing the defender - Daily Express

Reported Chelsea target Leonardo Bonucci has signed a new five-year contract with Serie A champions Juventus. Should the Premier League leaders decide to pursue a winter deal for Bonucci, a much greater fee will be demanded, after he signed improved terms that tie him to 'La Vecchia Signora' until 2021.

Tottenham have bid £19m for Atalanta midfielder Franck Kessie, 20, with Chelsea and Manchester United also interested - Calciomercato (Italian football news site)

Manchester United will reportedly make a move to sign Feyenoord defender Rick Karsdorp in January - Daily Star

Saido Berahino, the out-of-favour West Brom striker has reportedly alerted clubs in Italy, with reports claiming Roma are keen on signing the former England U21 international. The 23-year-old, who is out of contract next summer, has been frozen out of Tony Pulis’ first team at The Hawthorns and has also attracted interest from Inter Milan - skysports.com

West Ham
manager Slaven Bilic has cancelled the club's Christmas party despite winning seven points in a week - Daily Telegraph and Daily Mirror

Crystal Palace boss Alan Pardew has admitted results have not been good enough in 2016 and is determined to ensure the Eagles enjoy a more productive new year - The Times

Liverpool are interested in 19-year-old Santos striker Thiago Maia - ESPN (in Portuguese)

West Ham and Southampton are targeting 26 year-old Eibar midfielder Dani Garcia - Marca (Spanish national daily sport newspaper)

Fulham could beat Birmingham City to the permanent signing of £1m-rated Burnley striker Lukas Jutkiewicz, due to the recent managerial change at City - Daily Mirror.

Real Madrid forward James Rodriguez, 25, says he may leave the club in January as he searches for more playing time - skysports.com and Daily Star

Former Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal is in the frame to become the new manager at Paris St-Germain - TF1 (Private national French TV channel)

Wolfsburg have dropped defender Philipp Wollscheid for reportedly criticising a member of the club's coaching staff. The 27-year-old Germany international, who is currently on loan from Stoke, was excluded from the squad for Saturday's 1-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt. "He's currently training individually, It's one of those things that happens" said coach Valerien Ismael - Wolfsburg Nachrichten newspaper

Celtic and Rangers could miss out on Barnsley captain Conor Hourihane - who is out of contract in the summer - after the Tykes offered him a new deal to stay at Oakwell - Daily Record

Former Everton striker Lacina Traore is a target for Malaga, according to his agent. The 26-year-old is currently on loan at CSKA Moscow from his parent club Monaco but he could be on the move again next month - Tass (Russian news agency)

Ipswich are interested in Dundalk defender Sean Gannon in the wake of the Irish side's impressive performances in the Europa League.



Monday, December 12, 2016

Statistically, the ICT index score of the best performing players in the English Premier League so far this season!


The ICT Index (Influence, Creativity, Threat) is a new feature for the 2016/17 Premier League campaign.

A football statistical index, it has been developed specifically to give a verdict on a player as a Football Premier League asset.

It condenses more than 40 match event statistics for three key areas – Influence, Creativity and Threat, to generate the data into a single score.

This score is what is known as an individual’s ICT Index score, and via this data is able to offer an accurate summary on player performance.


Season 2016/17 - Last update: 12/12/16 at 11am


For those of you currently playing 'Fantasy Premier League Football' you may want to take note!


Goalkeepers:

1. Tom Heaton (Burnley) 45.7 ICT Index (pictured right)
2. Jordan Pickford (Sunderland) 39.9
3. Lukasz Fabianski (Swansea) 35.5
4. Ben Foster (West Brom) 34.4
5. Artur Boruc (Bournemouth) 29.1
6. Maarten Stekelenburg (Everton) 28.9
7. Petr Cech (Arsenal) 28.7
8. Adrian (West Ham) 26.6
9. Hugo Lloris (Tottenham) 25.1
10. Heurelho Gomes (Watford) 25.1


Defenders:

1. Michael Keane (Burnley) 76.6 ICT Index
2. Patrick van Aanholt (Sunderland) 75.3
3. Charlie Daniels (Bournemouth) 72.8
4. Steve Cook (Bournemouth) 71.8
5. Nathaniel Clyne (Liverpool) 70.6
6. José Holebas (Watford) 67.7
7. Christian Fuchs (Leicester) 67.3
8. Kyle Walker (Tottenham) 64.8
9. Simon Francis (Bournemouth 63.0
10. Virgil van Dijk (Southampton) 60.7


Midfielders:

1. Alexis Sánchez (Arsenal) 192.4 ICT Index
2. Roberto Firmino (Liverpool) 151.0 (pictured right)
3. Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool) 144.9 (Injured - expected back 14 January '17)
4. Eden Hazard (Chelsea) 143.1
5. Christian Eriksen (Tottenham) 139.2
6. Dimitri Payet (West Ham) 136.7 50.4
7. Mesut Özil (Arsenal) 136.3
8. Sadio Mané (Liverpool) 136.3
9. Theo Walcott (Arsenal) 135.3
10. Kevin De Bruyne (Man City) 133.4


Forwards:

1. Diego Costa (Chelsea) 180.4 ICT Index
2. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Man Utd) 167.6
3. Sergio Agüero (Man City) 146.4 (Suspended until 31 December '16)
4. Romelu Lukaku (Everton) 135.3
5. Christian Benteke (C. Palace) 120.0 (pictured right)
6. Jermain Defoe (Sunderland) 97.9
7. Charlie Austin (Southampton) 94.7 (Injured - unknown return date)
8. Fernando Llorente (Swansea) 90.4
9. Salomón Rondón (West Brom) 90.3
10. Harry Kane (Tottenham) 90.2



1. Influence

Influence is the first measurement. This evaluates the degree to which that player has made an impact on a single match or throughout the season.

It takes into account events and actions that could directly or indirectly effect the outcome of the fixture.

At the top level these are decisive actions like goals and assists. But the Influence score also processes significant defensive actions to analyse the effectiveness of defenders and goalkeepers.

2. Creativity

Creativity assesses player performance in terms of producing goalscoring opportunities for others. It can be used as a guide to identify the players most likely to supply assists.

While this analyses frequency of passing and crossing, it also considers pitch location and quality of the final ball.

3. Threat

This is the third measure, producing a value that examines a player's threat on goal. It gauges individuals most likely to score goals.

While attempts are the key action, the Index looks at pitch location, giving greater weight to actions that are regarded as the best chances to score.

All three of these scores are combined to create an overall ICT Index score. That then offers a single figure that presents a view on that player as a Football Premier League asset.




Friday, November 18, 2016

Some of the Most Bizarre Red Cards in Football


After Edin Dzeko received one of the most bizarre red cards in the history of football last Sunday night, during Bosnia Herzegovina's World Cup qualifier against Greece, I decided to take a look back in time at some other 'unusual' dismissals over the years!


Edin Dzeko - Bosnia Herzegovina v. Greece (November 2016)

Firstly to last Sunday!
Edin Dzeko, formerly of Manchester City and now at Roma, was unhappy after an innocuous challenge in the corner.

Bosnia were leading 1-0 at the time, but Dzeko took exception to Kyriakos Papadopoulos stepping over him as he fell to the ground. The defender tried to grab the ball and Dzeko reacted by grabbing his legs, then pulling his shorts down. As Dzeko stood up, he tripped the Greek over, sparking a melee between both sets of players.



Referee Jonas Eriksson decided to send off both players. The incident was a key turning point as it sparked Greece into life, and Bosnia conceded in the dying seconds to draw 1-1.


Adam Lindin Ljungkvist - Järna SK v. Pershagen SK (June 2016)

Swedish footballer Adam Lindin Ljungkvist, 25 was sent off for breaking wind during a match – with the referee Dany Kako, accusing him of 'deliberate provocation' and 'unsportsmanlike behaviour.'

The player told a Swedish newspaper: "I had a bad stomach, so I simply let go! Then I received two yellow cards and then red. Yes, I was shocked, it’s the strangest thing I have ever experienced in football.

I asked the referee: "What, am I not allowed to break wind a little?" "No" he replied - "I don’t get it, but maybe he thought I farted in my hand and threw the fart at him. But I did not.”

Opposition striker Kristoffer Linde told the paper: “I was standing a good distance away but I heard the fart loud and clear. It’s the strangest thing I’ve seen on a pitch, and I’ve been playing football since I was eight years old.”


Hakan Unsal - Turkey v. Brazil (June 2002)

One of the most skillful and creative players of his generation, Rivaldo was once World Player of the Year, an icon for the Brazilian national team and a deadly forward for the likes of Barcelona, AC Milan and Olympiakos. But, there is one thing he will always be remembered for.

During the World Cup group phase match with Turkey at the 2002 World Cup, Rivaldo went over to take a corner kick – right under the linesman’s nose.
Turkey’s Hakan Unsal kicked the ball at the Brazilian’s legs, but bizarrely, Unsal, who had already been booked, was sent off for kicking the ball at Rivaldo, who was down on the ground clutching his face.



Rivaldo was actually fined by FIFA afterwards for his play-acting, becoming the first player to be punished under the crackdown on players pretending to have been fouled in order to get an opponent into trouble. Rivaldo, ahead of his time.


Ashley Vickers - Dorchester Town v. Havant and Waterlooville (March 2011)

Dorchester Town striker and player-boss Ashley Vickers was sent off in 2011 for rugby-tackling a streaker on the pitch.

The turf intruder - wearing nothing but a Borat mankini and curly wig picked his moment during a Blue Square Bet South clash at Havant and Waterlooville, but Vickers took mattered into own hands, grabbing him by the shoulders and wrestling him to the floor.

The stewards intervened - to the delight of a crowd of just 458 - but cheers turned to boos as Vickers was dismissed just moments afterwards, 'violent disorder' the verdict.



Havant and Waterlooville went on to win the match 3-1.


Pepe - Real Madrid v. Getafe (April 2009)

Real Madrid centre-back Pepe is renowned for his fiery temper, but he has done well in recent seasons to slightly curb that ill-side to him.

However, back in 2009 the Portuguese defender displayed one of the most erratic and ridiculous pieces of defending ever during a game against Getafe.

Running through on goal to deny Francisco Casquero a shot on goal, not only did he concede a penalty, but he actually started to kick at Casquero, twice, as he lay on the ground. It didn’t actually end there and after grabbing the opponent’s head, he then stamped on him, twice, as Getafe players did their best to pull him away.

After a couple of punches thrown at Getafe players, Pepe eventually walked off and was given a hefty 10-match ban.




Lee Bowyer and Kieron Dyer - Newcastle United v. Aston Villa (April 2005)

You don't expect to see a fight break out between two ‘team-mates’ on the pitch.

But that's exactly what happened on 2 April, 2005 as Newcastle midfield duo Lee Bowyer and Kieron Dyer got involved in a bust-up on the pitch.

Newcastle were 3-0 down at home to Aston Villa and already down to 10 men with just eight minutes of the game remaining, when Villa player Gareth Barry had to pull Bowyer away from the scrap before the pair were both sent off.

Dyer and Bowyer were forced to shake hands and publicly apologise after the incident under the instructions of Graeme Souness, Newcastle manager at the time.

Bowyer insisted the incident was a "moment of madness" sparked by a shared desire to win.


Eden Hazard - Swansea v. Chelsea (January 2013)

The Chelsea forward he made a fool of himself in South Wales as the Blues took on Swansea at the Liberty Stadium in the Capital One Cup semi-final. Hazard took exception to the actions of local ballboy Charlie Morgan, 17, who put his whole body on the ball when Hazard tried to retrieve it, earning a kick in the ribs from the player, with Morgan still rolling around in apparent pain.

Referee Chris Foy sent off the Belgian star.



The ball boy, who was uninjured, was interviewed by officers in the presence of his father and made no complaint about what happened.
Hazard later apologised for his behaviour saying: "The boy put his whole body on to the ball and I was just trying to kick the ball. I think I kicked the ball and not the boy. I apologise."

But Morgan, it later emerged, had tweeted before the game boasting about his timewasting skills.
One pre-match tweet on his account reads: "The king of all ball boys is back making his final appearance #needed #for #timewasting."


Matt McClure - Tranmere v. Wycombe (March 2015)

Make an impact! That's what substitutes are told in those precious seconds before they enter the field of play. Wycombe's Matt McClure certainly took that to heart at Tranmere on 4 March 2015, when he was sent off just 3.7 seconds after coming on.

Following an aerial challenge with Tranmere’s Adam Dugdale he was shown an instant red for throwing an elbow into Dugdale's face.




Keith Gillespie - Reading v. Sheffield United (January 2007)

Within 10 seconds of coming on as substitute Sheffield United's Keith Gillespie was heading back down the tunnel after being shown a red card by referee Mark Halsey, for throwing an elbow in the direction of Stephen Hunt.

As Gillespie headed down the tunnel he threw another punch at Hunt, and as tempers rose, backroom staff from both sides became involved.

Reading coach Wally Downes was sent from the touchline for shoving Blades' boss Neil Warnock, who followed him to the stands.


Walter Boyd - Swansea v Darlington (August 2000)

The Jamaican star was red-carded by referee Clive Wilkes for elbowing Darlington's Martin Gray. Boyd came on as a substitute seven minutes from time after Swansea were awarded a free-kick, but referee Wilkes dismissed him for his attack on Gray before it was taken.

Wilkes had stopped the game to send off Darlington's Steve Tutill for a foul on Steve Watkin.
By the time the official turned around, Gray was lying face down on the ground clutching his head.

Wilkes, who was alerted to what happened by the assistant referee, confirmed he had not restarted his watch before sending off Boyd. FA statistician Ray Spiller confirmed: "This will go in the record books as nought seconds as the match had not been restarted."


Neymar - Santos v. Colo Colo (March 2011)

Before Neymar’s fame, glory and goals at Barcelona, he was a young teenager at Brazilian side Santos attracting plenty of attention for his fantastic ability.
However, an incident back in 2011 failed to get many people smiling and instead raising eyebrows, after he was sent off after scoring a brilliant solo effort for Santos in a Copa Libertadores match.



Celebrating his fine strike, Neymar ran over to the touchline and put a mask on his face, albeit upside down, but the referee was not impressed and gave the young starlet his second yellow. If it was any consolation to Neymar, his red card sparked fury and eventually the game ended with four more sending offs.


Kieran Gibbs - Arsenal v Chelsea (March 2014)

When Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain stuck out a hand to help Eden Hazard's apparent goal-bound shot miss the mark he could have fully expected to see a flash of red from referee Andre Marriner.

The card was produced, but was shown instead to his bemused team-mate Gibbs, who protested his innocence to the referee before accepting his fate and trudging off the pitch.

Arsenal went on to lose the match 6-0 but avoided a further setback as both Gibbs and Oxlade-Chamberlain were cleared of wrongdoing, while Marriner issued a sincere apology to Kieran Gibbs.


Joey Barton - Manchester City v. Queens Park Rangers (May 2012)

Barton has never been one to shy away from trouble and like Pepe’s one, he really should have stopped when he had the chance.

With Queens Park Rangers looking to stay up on the final day of the 2011/12 season, the QPR man clashed with Carlos Tevez off the ball. Referee Mike Dean spotted it and sent him off, but the damage was not finished.
Barton then walked over to Sergio Aguero following the red card and kneed him in the leg, before attempting to headbutt captain Vincent Kompany.



Eventually after trudging off and leaving his side with a big task, he was given a 12-game ban which went stayed with him as he joined Marseille on loan,



Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Babe of the Month - Football Freestyler Indi Cowie


Indi Armstrong Cowie was born on 24th September 1994 in Boca Raton, Florida, United States to Scottish parents, and is a global superstar in the world of freestyle football, and is famous around the globe for her amazing videos and incredible talent.

As well as being an official Nike Athlete and a USWNT ambassador, Indi is also a social media phenomenon, with a current reach of 3,000,000 followers across her platforms.

In 2012 footballer Lionel Messi selected indi as the EA Games "Street v Street" world freestyle champion, and she has appeared on Ellen DeGeneres, ESPN, Good Morning America, The Today Show and was featured in the New York Times "Talented Youth of America" edition.

Cowie’s impressive resumé has also seen her travel across the world, performing at high-profile sporting and corporate events for clients such as Microsoft, SAS and Lenovo.

Indi's talents have also given her the opportunity to meet and connect with the biggest names in sport, performing a half-time show in front of 76,000 Manchester United and Chelsea fans at Old Trafford and staring in a Sony PlayStation commercial made for the UEFA Champions League which was played in 58 countries worldwide. Indi got to see it on the jumbotron in at the 2010 Champions League Final in Madrid. It was never aired in the USA.



She also took part Mia Hamm’s Celebrity Soccer Challenge with former Los Angeles Lakers basketball star Kobe Bryant and former FC Barcelona and Bayern Munich and current Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola.

Oh, and she has skills on the pitch as well, playing for Celtic Ladies and the U17 Scottish women's national team during 2010/11, and for the North Carolina Tar Heels in 2012.

However in Spring 2013 Indi tore her anterior cruciate ligament during an exhibition match and her chance to play football professionally was delt a huge blow.
As she was getting back from her knee injury, she made the decision to continue with freestyle and go pro with that, although she also works as an assistant football coach for the North Carolina Tar Heels.

From the age of 12 Indi's biggest goal was to become a Nike Athlete. After eight years of hard work and dedication her dream came true!


She was inspired to take up freestyle football after observing a demonstration by John Farnworth. Cowie practices her skills up to three hours per day.

In 2015 Indi travelled to Brazil where she competed in The Red Bull Street Style Championships, to China to compete in a national TV Game Show and to Canada for The Women's World Cup.

In 2015, Cowie became the first woman to do a octuple revolution - eight full circles around the soccer ball with the foot while it is still in the air.




You can follow Indi on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and on her YouTube channel


Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Incandescent with Rage - Walking and Talking while on the phone!


My eyes have been opened up more and more of late than at any other time, to what is truly one of the banes of my life. My exasperation at the obsession of walking and talking whilst on a mobile phone has raised my blood pressure to an unhealthy level!

It is fast becoming the norm rather than exception and to the detriment of society. Oblivious to others and on a totally different planet those that are guilty of indulging in this unacceptable 'crime' has lead to a fundamental breakdown in the the very basics of what I would describe as acceptable human behaviour.

Manners, consideration for others and spacial awareness are not recently discovered forms of human behaviour!

Yesterday as I was forced (not for the first time) to hastily sidestep a walking talking robot, my thoughts drew to the halcyon days when mobile devices the size of a household bricks were fixed in cars or only belonged to those in the higher echelons of society.

Having to listen to someone talking at an inordinately and unnecessary volume on a mobile phone in itself is often infuriating, and although it is regrettably a common occurrence nowadays, it is in my world anyway incredibly discourteous to those in the immediate vicinity.

I wrote an article nearly ten years ago entitled 'Mobile Diarrhoea' on the subject of commuters on trains engaging in loud and mind numbingly tedious mobile calls, and it was published in a London evening newspaper, and it can be read here.


Incredibly 76% of the UK population has a smartphone (up from 52% in 2012), with that figure increasing to 90% for those people between the ages of 16 and 34, so you can be sure a lot of those people are not even walking and talking, more likely walking and gawking as they stick their faces into their brightly lit gadgets to entertain themselves. Whether they are playing FIFA 17, checking emails, placing an online bet, looking up the latest football scores, participating in sexting, poking someone on facebook, posting a tweet or whatever - the underlying point is that nothing they are doing is a matter of life or death, such that it cannot wait a few minutes. No thought is given to those around them, and as a result in their world the word 'respect' only relates to an Aretha Franklin mantra. In fact only one in four UK smartphone owners uses their phone to actually make a call in any given week!

The days of looking out for your fellow being and human interaction are seemingly over. Giving up your seat, letting a lady take her place in front of you, a gesture of good will, a simple acknowledgement, the muttering of those immortal words please and thank you, seem all but a distant memory when your eyes are steely fixated on your screen as you text your partner because you may be five minutes late home, therefore dispelling any possible accusations that you might be having an affair with Gladice who refills the office vending machines.

The 'walking talking' brigade amble along blindly in their self-absorbed world, get in your way, knock into you without even an ounce of apology, and all this while their obsession with their mobile device leaves them floundering in a world where time is money, but more importantly where time is precious!

Nowhere is this more commonplace than on public transport. Every morning and evening people from all walks of life are busy negotiating their way to or from their place of work.
We all have the same goal, to get from A to B as quickly as possible, as safely as possible. The extremely fast pace of life we all subjected to in this modern age means that in order to do this requires a good deal of concentration.

One does not need a slow paced, erratic walking persona in a robotic trance to hinder your journey, anymore than a delayed mode of transport to get the blood boiling, because those people that do not engage in such behaviour are fighting back!


I have witnessed people deliberately barging into, shouting at and gesturing at these narcissistic, self-absorbed characters as they carry on beavering away on their phones, electing to choose to take up a pretence that would have you believe they are oblivious to everyone around them. Perhaps one may deem this type of behaviour somewhat inappropriate, even condemn it, but is it not largely understandable?

But tell me; why should we obligingly make way for or take responsibility for navigating around people who have no thought for those that are around them!

So I ask you 'phone addicts,' why not think about your milieu from time to time, and at least step to one side and complete the life saving triple bypass heart operation on your touch screen, so others can pass without fear of being bumped, barged, tripped or worse!

Phone addicts........mind the GAP!















Saturday, October 01, 2016

Babe of the Month - Fitness Cover Model Laura Michelle Prestin


Laura Michelle Prestin (better known as ‘Miss Prestin’) was born 29th January 1985 in Burlington, Ontario, Canada. The 5'7" blonde beauty is one of the leading internationally published fitness models in the world. Laura Michelle has graced the covers of numerous magazines, being voted #1 in Canada by Inside Fitness Magazine, as well as gracing the ‘most talked about’ American Curves Magazine cover worldwide.

Laura Michelle holds a degree as a Registered Practical Nurse specializing in health, fitness and anti-aging. She is a Bikini Pro Champion with 10 years of fitness and health expertise, and has shared her insights as a writer for 'Inside Fitness Magazine' and 'Oxygenfit for Women.'

Miss Prestin is also the creator of PrestinFit, a complete and unique training program that synergistically combines high intensity circuits that shift between strength and speed exercises, with a highly effective intermittent fasting diet plan, to build a powerful physique in the gym or in the comfort of your own home.

Laura Michelle Prestin is known for her edgy photos and videos, and has inspired thousands of people to live a healthier lifestyle, and she is also a personal trainer. Laura is virtually an internet sensation, known for towing the boundaries of risqué and overtly sexual, making her followers go nuts. Her body is one of the most memorable ones out there, and she is not afraid to show it off!


Laura has always been active, and played sports while growing up, playing competitive soccer, running cross country and track. She started actually training in the gym in high school but took it more seriously when she was about 21 years old. She became a model in her early twenties, and started diving into the hardcore fitness world after people were inundating her with mail asking her fitness related questions, and if she had ever considered becoming a fitness model.



So she started blogging and becoming more involved with helping other people achieve their goals. I am a personal trainer and constantly read health and fitness articles one after another.
I still do this and that is why I am developing programs to get the body that people want. Recently working alongside with Gaspari Nutrition has made me more involved with the fitness industry more than ever now and I love it.

Laura Michelle feels just being in this business is very motivating because you always need to look your best and this motivates me not to slack. I get a complete high off training, competing, and playing sports. For me life without training on a daily basis would become disorganized with no structure. Having a scheduled workout allows me to balance my own business, student-life, modeling and travel. I love planning out my days incorporating physical activity into them.

I not only do it for myself because it is a lifestyle, but my fans really keep me on top of my game too. She currently has over 130,000 followers on Instagram with new followers being added each day.

A true Canadian superstar, when asked how she stays motivated Miss Prestin said: “You develop a relationship with your fans where you become their motivator and in turn they become yours."

One of Miss Prestin's professional goals is to own a spa or a beauty clinic.


A true Canadian superstar, when asked how she stays motivated Miss Prestin said: “You develop a relationship with your fans where you become their motivator and in turn they become yours."

Laura Michelle in one sentence – "Miss Prestin is the intelligent and a strong woman in every sense of the word with a perfect body and a highly charged magnetism."


Laura Michelle's Conventional Training Schedule:

Workout Split:

Monday: Legs
Tuesday: Back/Abs/Arms
Wednesday: Chest/Shoulders
Thursday: Legs
Friday: Back/Abs/Arms
Saturday: Yoga
Sunday: Rest

"On a leg day I love super setting. For example, Barbell Squats combo with One Legged Hip Bridges, Deadlifts with Hamstring Curl combos on the stability ball and Lunges with Jump Squats etc."


Typical Diet Plan:

Meal 1: Oatmeal or Egg Whites, Banana and Juice
Meal 2: Almonds or a Sandwich
Meal 3: Tuna Salad
Meal 4: Apple, Orange and Yogurt
Meal 5: Protein Shake
Meal 6: Chicken or Fish, Vegetables, Salad and Spinach or Rice
Meal 7: Cereal or Protein Shake

"I don’t measure my food. I usually try to stick to a handful of each type of food. I eat every 2-3 hours and about 7 meals a day if not more. I make sure I have plenty of fiber, protein, veggies/fruits and water etc."

"People tend to cut a lot of types of foods (the so called fattening foods) ignoring the fact that there may be other benefits that can actually contribute to your overall health and staying fit."


Laura Michelles' top 10 tips for people who want to get in shape!

1. Set goals
2. Commit to seeing them through to the end
3. Think positive
4. Don’t obsess about every single thing you eat
5. Don’t over-train (don’t go 7 days a week 3 hours a day)
6. Try to train with a partner so you keep each other motivated
7. If you get off track, don’t worry tomorrow is a new day. Wake up and start again
8. When you partied hard the night before and wake up still feeling tipsy, go straight to the gym for some cardio and you will feel much better!
9. If you don’t feel like training, train anyway, you will be glad you did
10. Consistency is key!







You can follow Laura Michelle Prestin on: Facebook, InstagramTwitter and via her Personal Website









Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Statistically, the ICT index score of the best performing players in the English Premier League so far this season!


The ICT Index (Influence, Creativity, Threat) is a new feature for the 2016/17 Premier League campaign.

A football statistical index, it has been developed specifically to give a verdict on a player as a Football Premier League asset.

It condenses more than 40 match event statistics for three key areas – Influence, Creativity and Threat, to generate the data into a single score.

This score is what is known as an individual’s ICT Index score, and via this data is able to offer an accurate summary on player performance.


Season 2016/17 - Last update: 20/09/16 at 9am


For those of you currently playing 'Fantasy Premier League Football' you may want to take note!


Goalkeepers:

1. Eldin Jakupovic (Hull) 16.3  ICT Index
2. Tom Heaton (Burnley) 16.0
3. Lukasz Fabianski (Swansea) 15.2
4. Ben Foster (West Brom) 14.5
5. Shay Given (Stoke) 14.0
6. Artur Boruc (Bournemouth) 14.0
7. Jordan Pickford (Sunderland) 12.8 (right)
8. Adrian (West Ham) 11.9
9. Kasper Schmeichel (Leicester) 11.2
10. Simon Mignolet (Liverpool) 10.8


Defenders:

1. Scott Dann (Crystal Palace) 33.6  ICT Index
2. Curtis Davies (Hull) 29.2
3. Kyle Naughton (Swansea) 27.0
4. Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea) 26.4
5. Nathaniel Clyne (Liverpool) 26.2
6. James Collins (West Ham) 25.0
7. Christian Fuchs (Leicester) 24.5
8. Cédric Soares (Southampton) 23.5
9. Antonio Valencia (Man Utd) 23.0
10. Adam Smith (Bournemouth) 22.9


Midfielders:

1. Michail Antonio (West Ham) 60.8  ICT Index (right)
2. Kevin De Bruyne (Man City) 50.9
3. Alexis Sánchez (Arsenal) 55.4
4. Raheem Sterling (Man City) 52.8
5. Eden Hazard (Chelsea) 51.2
6. Theo Walcott (Arsenal) 50.4
7. Adam Lallana (Liverpool) 47.0
8. Dusan Tadic (Southampton) 46.8
9. Robert Snodgrass (Hull) 45.9
10. Willian Borges Da Silva (Chelsea) 45.0


Forwards:

1. Diego Costa (Chelsea) 62.9  ICT Index
2. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Man Utd) 56.7
3. Romelu Lukaku (Everton) 56.5
4. Wayne Rooney (Man Utd) 47.2
5. Harry Kane (Watford) 44.1
6. Jamie Vardy (Leicester) 37.8
7. Kelechi Iheanacho (Man City) 37.1 (right)
8. Sergio Agüero (Man City) 36.2
9. Salomón Rondón (West Brom) 36.2
10. Fernando Llorente (Swansea) 33.4




1. Influence

Influence is the first measurement. This evaluates the degree to which that player has made an impact on a single match or throughout the season.

It takes into account events and actions that could directly or indirectly effect the outcome of the fixture.

At the top level these are decisive actions like goals and assists. But the Influence score also processes significant defensive actions to analyse the effectiveness of defenders and goalkeepers.

2. Creativity

Creativity assesses player performance in terms of producing goalscoring opportunities for others. It can be used as a guide to identify the players most likely to supply assists.

While this analyses frequency of passing and crossing, it also considers pitch location and quality of the final ball.

3. Threat

This is the third measure, producing a value that examines a player's threat on goal. It gauges individuals most likely to score goals.

While attempts are the key action, the Index looks at pitch location, giving greater weight to actions that are regarded as the best chances to score.

All three of these scores are combined to create an overall ICT Index score. That then offers a single figure that presents a view on that player as a Football Premier League asset.