Monday, May 31, 2010

They Think It's All Over - For Palace It Very Nearly Is !

Crystal Palace Football Club are on the brink of being wound-up, but its prospective owners have appealed to new British Prime Minister David Cameron to step in and stop the club's demise.

Consortium 'CPFC 2010,' a group headed by local businessmen who want to buy the Championship club said in a statement today (Monday) that unless they can complete a deal to buy the Club by 3pm on Tuesday, the club would go into liquidation and Agilo, the hedge fund which put Palace into administration in January will sell the players to get their money back.

The sticking point has been over the purchase of Selhurst Park which is under the control of separate administrators PricewaterhouseCoopers, who are selling the ground on behalf of Bank of Scotland.

There is an issue over a clause that would see the bank receive further money if the ground was sold on in the future for something like housing.

Although a deal had appeared to be imminent, a sticking point arose because one set of administrators are working with the consortium, and another are working on behalf of the Government-owned Bank of Scotland, who own the club's Selhurst Park ground, and are its major creditor.

'CPFC 2010' have appealed to the Prime Minister, whose new coalition government is committed to sport, to step in and prevent the Bank of Scotland overseeing its demise.

A statement from 'CPFC 2010' read:

"As we sit today the future of Crystal Palace hangs in the balance and is very much in the hands of a person in a bank whom we have never met and, it seems, we are not allowed to speak to.
We note the new government's commitment to sport, particularly sport in the community. Bank of Scotland is currently government owned.
As such we would urge the new Prime Minister to intervene personally to resolve the situation or see a club supported by many thousands, and with a 100-year history, consigned to the scrapheap."

Palace's administrator Brendan Guilfoyle told Sky Sports News:

"I'm millions of pounds behind, staff weren't paid on Friday and a number were made redundant, others were asked to carry on working for nothing and it's not a situation I can allow to continue for long. So I've got to start selling players, and if I do that the indications are that the consortium 'CPFC 2010' will withdraw.
Since they are the only party willing to acquire the club then there is a distinct possibility that once I've sold the players I'll have to walk away and let the liquidation process continue."

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Congratulations to England's Under-17's - UEFA European Champions 2010.

England skipper Conor Coady lifts the the European Championship trophy

England's Under-17's were today crowned European Football Champions for the first time, after a 2-1 victory over their Spanish counterparts in Liechtenstein.

Spain, Under-17 champions twice in the last three years dominated opening proceedings and took the lead in the 22nd minute at the Rheinpark Stadium.

England rallied and were level just eight minutes later when Liverpool's Andre Wisdom headed Josh McEachran's corner past Spanish keeper Adrian Ortolá.

Ipswich forward Connor Wickham was in outstanding form and gave England the lead after 42 minutes, beating three defenders as he cut into the box before giving Ortolá no chance with a cool finish.

Spain were pushing hard to equalise, but tournament top scorer Paco was frustrated in his attempt to add to his six goals.

Wickham could have put his side even further ahead in the second half, but there were no further goals as England held on for a first age-group title since England hosted and won the UEFA Under-18 European Championships in 1993.

England manager John Peacock said afterwards: "It means a lot to the English game. We've obviously got our critics that we are not producing players. We have produced many, many good players from this tournament, we are producing good players back in England. What is missing was a final where we could put our name to a trophy, hopefully we won't have to wait 17 years for another one."

Now can the England senior squad go on and lift the World Cup in South Africa this summer, and put English football firmly back on the map?

Friday, May 28, 2010

Arse About Face - World Cup Hair To Die For!

A hairdresser is a universal term referring to someone whose occupation is to cut or style hair in order to change or maintain a person's image. This is achieved using a combination of hair colouring, haircutting and hair texture techniques.
Some barbers prefer to see themselves as hairdressers or hairstylists.
In fact, barbers can cut hair, trim beards, colour, perm, provide facials, and shave. Today, barbers and stylists may be found working side by side in establishments known as male salons. Male salons have afforded the barber the opportunity to remain traditional in all aspects of the term, yet also progressively contemporary as fashion and trends evolve.

In the dock and charged with crimes against football, in this case for attempting and failing to carry off the role of a fashion icon are:

Defendant One: Ronaldo (Brazil) seen at the 2002 World Cup in Japan & South Korea sporting this cataclysmic faux pas.....

Defendant Two: Carles Puyol (Spain) a repeat offender - seen firstly at the 2002 World Cup in Japan & South Korea and again at the 2006 World Cup in Germany sporting this cataclysmic faux pas.....

Defendant Three: Alexis Lalas (USA) seen at the 1994 World Cup in the United States sporting this cataclysmic faux pas.....

Defendant Four: Carlos Valderrama (Columbia) seen at the 1990 World Cup in Italy sporting this cataclysmic faux pas.....

Defendant Five: Roberto Baggio (Italy) seen at the 1994 World Cup of in the United States sporting this cataclysmic faux pas.....

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The 2009/10 European Domestic League's Winners and Losers, and the Top Scorers

English Premier League:
Winners: Chelsea
Runners-Up - Manchester United
Relegated - Hull City, Burnley, Portsmouth.
Top scorers: Didier Drogba (Chelsea 29 goals), Wayne Rooney (Man Utd 26), Darren Bent (Sunderland 24).

Italy Serie A :
Winners - Inter Milan
Runners-Up - Roma
Relegated - Atalanta Bergamo, AC Siena, AS Livorno.
Top scorers: Antonio Di Natale (Udinese 29 goals), Diego Milito (Inter 22), Fabrizio Miccoli (Palermo 19), Giampaolo Pazzini (Sampdoria 19).

Spanish La Liga:
Winners - Barcelona
Runners-Up - Real Madrid
Relegated - Valladolid, Tenerife, Xerez CD.
Leading scorers: Lionel Messi (Barcelona 34 goals), Gonzalo Higuain (Real Madrid 27), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid 26), David Villa (Barcelona 21).

German Bundesliga:
Winners - Bayern Munich
Runners-Up - Schalke 04
Relegated: Bochum, Hertha Berlin.
Top scorers: Edin Dzeko (Vfl Wolfsburg 22 goals), Stefan Kiessling (Bayern Leverkusen 21), Lucas Barrios (Borussia Dortmund 19).

French Ligue 1 League Table:
Winners - Olympique Marseille
Runners-Up - Lyon
Relegated - Le Mans, Boulogne-Sur-Mer, Grenoble.
Top scorers: Mamadou Niang (O.Marseille 18 goals), Kevin Gameiro (Lorient 17), Lisandro Lopez (Lyon 15), Mevlut Erdinc (PSG 15).

Dutch Eredivisie League Table:
Winners - Twente Enschede
Runners-Up - Ajax Amsterdam
Relegated - Sparta Rotterdam, Willem II Tilburg, Rkc Waalwijk
Top Scorers: Luis Suarez (Ajax 35 goals), Bryan Ruiz (Twente 24),Mads Junker (Roda 21).

Portuguese Liga Sagres League Table:
Winners: Benfica
Runners-Up - Sporting Braga
Relegated - Belenenses Lissabon, Leixoes SC.
Top scorers: Oscar Cardoza (Benfica 26 goals), Radamel Falcao Garcia (Porto 25),Liedson (Sporting CP 13).

Danish SAS Ligaen League Table:
Winners - FC Copenhagen
Runners-Up - Odense BK
Relegated - Aarhus GF, HB Køge.
Top Scorers - Peter Utaka (Odense 18 goals), Tim Janssen (Esbjerg 15), Dame N'Doye (FC Copenhagen 14).

Greek Super League Table:
Winners - Panathinaikos FC
Runners-Up - Olympiakos Pireus
Relegated - Pae Levadeiakos, Pas Giannina, Panthrakikos.
Top Scorers - Djibril Cisse (Panathinaikos 17 goals), Giorgos Barkoglou (Levadiakos 11), Javier Campora (Aris 11), Victoras Lacob (Iraklis 11).

Austrian Bundesliga League Table:
Winners - FC Red Bull Salzburg
Runners-Up - Austria Wien
Relegated - SC Austria Kelag Kärnten
Top scorers: Steffen Hoffman (SK Rapid 20 goals), (Roman Wallner LASK Linz 19), Marco Janko (FC Red Bull Salzburg 18).

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Could the USA really threaten England in South Africa? - 2010 World Cup Betting News with Betfred


With England due to kick-off their 2010 World Cup campaign three weeks today, the hype about this summer's World Cup is well and truly underway, and you can't move for adverts in support of our national team. However one football expert reckons Fabio Capello's side face a tricky task early on in the competition.

England, who are third favourites in the World Cup 2010 betting, face the USA in Rustenburg in their opening game on June 12th. The Three Lions are well-fancied to win this clash at 1/2 with Betfred, while the Americans are 5/1 to cause a shock.

One man who thinks it may not be so easy for England is Sir Alex Ferguson, who thinks the USA have a "very good chance at qualifying", which could see some punters seeing the Americans to win Group C at 5/1 as a reasonable shout.

The Manchester United manager said there are a number of players in Bob Bradley's squad who are more than capable of springing a surprise on opposition defences in South Africa.

"I don't think they're going to be overwhelmed with the atmosphere of the World Cup, the importance of the World Cup, the intensity," Ferguson said.

"I think that will be easy for them. I think they'll be used to that. Those players have that, Landon Donovan, Clint Dempsey. Dempsey has had a great season in England this year."

He added: "They are very athletic, they apply themselves very well, and are difficult to play against."

England and the USA, the two favourites to progress from Group C, also have to play Slovenia and Algeria. The eastern European nation failed to clock up a point in their only other World Cup appearance in 2002, while the African side also have a poor record in the tournament. They are 15/8 and 10/3 respectively to make it through to the second round, something I can't see happening.

Remember, this is the same USA side that is ranked 14 in the world and made it into the final of the Confederations Cup last summer, beating Spain on the way and giving Brazil a real game in the final. So not only should they make it out of the group, but they could go even further - the online betting makes them 20/1 shots to be knocked out in the semis.

My Opening Tip of the Tournament:

England and USA to qualify from Group C at 4/5 with Betfred, while England at 3/1 to get knocked out in the quarter-finals should also be considered by those punters seeking value.

England v United States - Saturday 12th June, kick-off 7.30pm, live on the ITV.
England v Algeria - Friday 18th June, kick-off 7.30pm, live on the ITV.
England v Slovenia - Wednesday 23rd June, kick-off 3pm, live on the BBC.

By Drew Swainston
(Guest writer from Betfred on behalf of Beer Footy and Birds!)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Latest World Cup News

Italy coach Marcello Lippi has dropped Juventus defender Fabio Grosso and Udinese midfielder Antonio Candreva from his World Cup squad ahead of a training camp this weekend and two warm up matches.
Grosso, 32 was a pivotal player for Italy in their World Cup success four years ago, while Candreva who made his international debut last November also misses out, after failing to shine in a poor Juventus side - ESPN Soccernet

Marcell Jansen remains on course to shake off a foot injury in time to make Germany's World Cup squad.
The Hamburg defender has been named in Joachim Low's 27-man preliminary party and is making is making encouraging progress, despite having been sidelined with the problem since March -

The Ghana Football Association says German midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng has been cleared to play for them.
This means the 23-year-old Portsmouth midfielder will be available to line up for the Black Stars at this summer's World Cup in South Africa.
Boateng was named in Black Stars coach Milovan Rajevac's 30-man squad for the finals despite the delay in his application to switch nationality - BBC Sport

Netherlands coach Bert van Marwijk has trimmed his provisional World Cup squad from 30 to 27 players.
PSV Eindhoven forward Otman Bakkal and midfielders Wout Brama (FC Twente) and David Mendes Da Silva (AZ Alkmaar) were all omitted.
Earlier in the week, van Marwijk omitted former Manchester United striker Ruud van Nistelrooy from his 30-man squad admitting he had doubts over his injuries - BBC Sport

Argentina coach Diego Maradona named a 23-man squad on Wednesday ahead of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, dropping seven players from the provisional list named last week.
The seven men cut from the provisional squad are Newcastle defender Fabricio Coloccini, Newell's Old Boys defender Juan Manuel Insaurralde, Jose Sosa of Estudiantes, Olympiakos midfielder Jesus Datolo, Napoli forward Ezequiel Lavezzi, Lanus' Sebastian Blanco and Juan Mercier of Argentinos Juniors -

Brazil midfielder Kaka claims that he will be ready for the start of the World Cup, having struggled with form and fitness throughout the season for Real Madrid.
Kaka endured a groin problem and a thigh injury through parts of the season and he was the subject of criticism for the length of time it took him to get over the injuries, but now maintains he will be in peak condition for the World Cup - ESPN Soccernet

Gordon Banks believes David James should start in goal for England this summer, even though he has not been the most consistent performer in that position. The goalkeeper for England's World Cup-winning side of 1966 said that while Joe Hart had enjoyed the most impressive season and Robert Green had played well in a struggling side, experience would be a vital asset in South Africa - The Guardian

Danish goalkeeper Thomas Sorensen is confident about winning his fitness race for the World Cup.
The Stoke City shot-stopper thought he had blown his chances of featuring in South Africa after dislocating his elbow in the Premier League loss at Chelsea on 25th April.
But the Dane is now 'very optimistic' he will be ready for his country's opening Group E match against Holland on 14th June -

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Congratulations to England - Twenty20 World Champions

England celebrate after being crowned 20/20 World Champions following today's seven-wicket victory over Australia at the Kensington Oval, Barbados.
It was their first tournament victory in 35 years of ICC limited-over competitions.


ICC World Twenty20 Final: England v Australia
16th May 2010 at Barbados.
Result: England beat Australia by 7 wickets

England won the toss and decided to field

Australia Innings: 147 for 6 (20.0 overs)
England Innings: 148 for 3 (17.0 overs)

Australia Innings:

S Watson c Swan b Sidebottom 2
Warner run out 2
M Clark c Collingwood b Swann 27
Haddin c Kieswetter b Sidebottom 1
D Hussey run out 59
C White c Broad b L Wright 30
M Hussey not out 17
Smith not out 1
Extras 1nb 4w 1b 2lb 8

Total 6 for 147 (20.0 overs)


Sidebottom 4.0 0 26 2
Bresnan 4.0 0 35 0
Broad 4.0 0 27 0
Swann 4.0 0 17 1
Yardy 3.0 0 34 0
L Wright 1.0 0 5 1

Fall of wickets:

2 S Watson
7 Warner
8 Haddin
45 M Clarke
95 C White
142 D Hussey

England Innings:

Lumb c D Hussey b Tait 2
Kieswetter b M Johnson 63
Pietersen c Warner b Smith 47
Collingwood not out 12
E Morgan not out 15
Extras 8w 1lb 9

Total 3 for 148 (17.0 overs)


Nannes 4.0 0 29 0
Tait 3.0 0 28 1
M Johnson 4.0 0 27 1
Smith 3.0 0 21 1
S Watson 3.0 0 42 0

Fall of wickets:

7 Lumb
118 Pietersen
121 Kieswetter

Umpires: Aleem Dar, B R Doctrove, R S Madugalle, B F Bowden

England team: Kieswetter (W), Lumb, Pietersen, Collingwood (C), E Morgan, L Wright, Bresnan, Yardy, Swann, Broad, Sidebottom

Australia team: Warner, S Watson, Haddin (W), M Clarke (C), D Hussey, C White, M Hussey, Smith, M Johnson, Tait, Nannes

Saturday, May 15, 2010

All The Latest Transfer Gossip

As the domestic football season here in England draws to a close, and with the World Cup less than a month away, there are still plenty of clubs both here and abroad monitoring the progress and availability of many players, in the hope they may be able to strengthen their respective squads in time for the start of next season.

Chelsea, Liverpool, Portsmouth, Manchester City, Manchester United, West Ham, Barcelona, Fulham, Inter Milan, Juventus, Arsenal, Wolves, Burnley, Lokomotiv Moscow, Hamburg, Tottenham, Everton, Benfica, Napoli, Aston Villa, Boulogne, Roma, Bristol City, Plymouth, Middlesbrough, QPR, Derby, Birmingham City, Crewe and Rochdale are all caught up in transfer gossip as we speak.

Is your Club involved?

Here is a round up:

Lokomotiv Moscow will make a new bid this summer for Tottenham striker Roman Pavlyuchenko, closer to the London club's £15m valuation - Daily Mirror

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is ready to make a move for Manchester City keeper Joe Hart and hopes that City boss Roberto Mancini is ready to listen to offers in the region of £8m for the England international -

Ben Foster is in talks with Birmingham City after they agreed a deal with Manchester United -

Chelsea believe they are closing in on the £40m-plus signing of Liverpool striker Fernando Torres - Daily Mirror

But Barcelona have joined the race for Fernando Torres with their president-elect Sandro Rosell having made contact with the Spaniard's representatives - Daily Mail

Chelsea are also ready to make a bid in the region of £22m for Roma's Montenegro international forward Mirko Vucinic this summer -

Fabio Cannavaro's agent claims the Juventus defender has set his sights on a return to Napoli, although there have been no negotiations as yet -

Fulham striker Bobby Zamora, 29, is an £8m target for Aston Villa and Everton - The Sun

Fulham are ready to pay Boulogne £3.5m for France under-21 midfielder Damien Marcq - Daily Mirror

Fulham are also keen on a £3.25m move for Bristol City striker Nicky Maynard - Daily Mail

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson is determined to beat Chelsea to the signature of Everton midfielder Jack Rodwell, 19, while Aston Villa midfielder James Milner is also a United target - The Times

Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini will revamp his squad this summer by letting 14 players leave Eastlands and bringing in Hamburg defender Jerome Boeteng for £11m, along with Benfica midfielder David Luiz and Napoli play-maker Marek Hamsik - Daily Mirror

Birmingham striker Christian Benitez is being tracked by West Ham after Birmingham decided not to sign the Ecuador striker on a permanent basis - Daily Mail

England international Robert Green insists he is happy at West Ham after being linked with a move to Arsenal.
The Gunners are thought to be weighing up a £6million move for the nine-cap England ace -

Wolves are hoping to sign Steven Fletcher from Burnley for a fee in the region of £6m as Mick McCarthy seeks to strengthen his attacking options - Daily Mirror

Neil Warnock has confirmed he is considering a bid to bring Plymouth Argyle striker Jamie Mackie to Queens Park Rangers -

Middlesbrough are set for a major transfer coup by beating Spurs and Fulham to the signature of Rochdale defender Craig Dawson - Daily Mail

Derby are closing in on the signings of Crewe duo John Brayford and James Bailey -

Other Gossip:

Portsmouth boss Avram Grant will be handed the West Ham manager role next week - Daily Express

Meanwhile, Juventus are preparing a bid to take Fulham boss Roy Hodgson to Italy as their new manager - The Sun

Liverpool midfielder Javier Mascherano's contract negotiations are unlikely to be resolved until after he plays for Argentina at the World Cup - Daily Mail

Former Arsenal boss Bruce Rioch, 62, is a contender to become the new boss of Plymouth - The Sun

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

England's Pre-World Cup Squad of 30 Announced

Today, England boss Fabio Capello named a 30 strong Pre-World Cup squad, which he shall whittle down to a final 23 players on the 1st June.

The 30 man squad comprises of 3 goalkeepers, 10 defenders, 12 midfielders and 5 strikers.

Selected in the preliminary squad are the uncapped Adam Johnson and Michael Dawson, the controversially recalled Jamie Carragher, the currently injured Gareth Barry and the somewhat surprising inclusions of Scott Parker, Tom Huddlestone, Leighton Baines and Stephen Warnock who have a total of just six England caps between them!

Paul Scholes, unlike Carragher turned down the opportunity to be a part of Capello's squad, as the England boss tried in vain to persuade the experienced Man Utd midfielder to make himself available.

The squad is as follows:

Joe Hart (Man City) - 1 Cap, 23 Years Old
David James (Portsmouth) - 49 Caps, 39 Yrs
Robert Green (West Ham) - 9 caps, 30 Yrs

Leighton Baines (Everton) - 1 Cap, 25 Years Old
Jamie Carragher (Liverpool) - 34 caps, 32 Yrs
Ashley Cole (Chelsea) - 77 Caps, 29 Yrs
Michael Dawson (Spurs) - Uncapped, 26 Yrs
Rio Ferdinand Man Utd) - 76 Caps, 31 yrs
Glen Johnson (Liverpool) - 20 Caps, 25 Yrs
Ledley King (Spurs) - 19 Caps, 29 Yrs
John Terry (Chelsea) - 59 caps, 29 Yrs
Matthew Upson (West Ham) - 19 caps, 31 Yrs
Stephen Warnock (Villa) - 1 Cap, 28 Yrs

Jamie Carragher - surprise recall!
Gareth Barry (Villa) - 36 Caps, 29 Yrs
Michael Carrick - (Man Utd) - 21 caps, 28 Yrs
Joe Cole (Chelsea) - 53 Caps, 28 Yrs
Steven Gerrard (Liverpool) - 78 caps, 29 Yrs
Tom Huddlestone (Spurs) - 1 cap, 23 Yrs
Adam Johnson (Man City) - Uncapped, 22 Yrs
Frank Lampard (Chelsea) - 77 caps, 31 yrs
Aaron Lennon (Spurs) - 15 caps, 23 Yrs
James Milner (Villa) - 7 Caps, 24 yrs
Scott Parker (West Ham) - 3 caps, 29 Yrs
Theo Walcott (Arsenal) - 9 caps, 21 Yrs
Shaun Wright-Phillips (Man City) - 30 Caps, 28 Yrs
Gareth Barry - an injury doubt!

Darren Bent (Sunderland) - 5 Caps, 26 Yrs
Peter Crouch (Spurs) - 37 caps, 29 Yrs
Jermain Defoe (Spurs) - 39 Caps, 27 Yrs
Emile Heskey (Villa) - 57 caps, 32 Yrs
Wayne Rooney (Man Utd) - 58 caps, 24 Yrs

Under Fifa regulations, Capello is permitted to bring players into his 23-man squad who were not included in the preliminary party.
But that would be an unusual move, meaning the final party he takes to this summer's finals in South Africa is likely to come from the one he has already named.

There are inevitably a number of players who will be disappointed at not being selected, at least in Capello's initial 30 strong squad, including the likes of:

Paul Robinson (Blackburn) - 41 England Caps, 30 Years Old. Scott Carson (West Brom) - 3 caps, 24 Yrs. Gary Neville (Man Utd) - 85 caps, 30 Yrs. Wayne Bridge (Man City) - 36 Caps, 29 Yrs. Sol Campbell (Arsenal) - 73 caps, 35 Yrs. Ryan Shawcross (Stoke City) - Uncapped, 22 Yrs. Wes Brown (Man Utd) - 23 Caps, 30 Yrs. Phil Jagielka (Everton) - 3 Caps, 27 Yrs. Joleon Lescott (Man City) - 9 Caps, 27 Yrs. Gary Cahill (Bolton) - Uncapped, 24 Yrs. Ashley Young (Aston Villa) - 7 Caps, 24 Yrs. Jermaine Jenas (Spurs) - 21 Caps, 27 Yrs. Owen Hargreaves (Man Utd) - 42 Caps, 29 Yrs. Stewart Downing (Villa) - 23 Caps, 25 Yrs. Jamie O'Hara (Spurs) - Uncapped, 23 Yrs. Kevin Davies (Bolton) - Uncapped, 33 Yrs. Carlton Cole (West Ham) - 7 caps, 26 Yrs. Bobby Zamora (Fulham) - Uncapped, 29 Yrs. Gabriel Agbonlahor (Villa) - 3 Caps, 23 Yrs.

England play Mexico at Wembley on 24th May and Japan in Austria six days later as part of a pre-tournament training camp.

In my opinion the seven players that Fabio Capello will leave out of his final World Cup squad of 23 players on the 1st June are: Warnock, Upson, Dawson, Huddlestone, Barry (only if injured - if he's fit then Adam Johnson may well make way), Wright-Phillips and Bent.

Friday, May 07, 2010

It's Crunch Time In The Premier League - Betting News with Betfred




The last weekend of the season looms and the Premier League title is on the line, so at least we all have one exciting last hurrah before contemplating another summer waiting for the domestic football to return - at least there's the 2010 Football World Cup to tide us over.

Obviously all eyes are going to be focused on Stamford Bridge and Old Trafford this Sunday as title rivals Chelsea and Manchester United face Wigan and Stoke respectively.

If Chelsea can beat the Latics then the title is theirs, and the football odds make them massive 1/10 favourites to win the match. Wigan, on the other hand are 25/1 shots to spring a surprise.

A shock slip-up by Chelsea at Stamford Bridge means a United victory over Stoke would see the trophy remain at Old Trafford, but Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard feels Chelsea are going into this vital game with great momentum.

"There is still another game to go but we are in a good position. If you are going to win titles you are going to have these moments," he said.

The England midfielder has been instrumental yet again for Chelsea this season so there would be no surprises if he got on the scoresheet to help win the Premier League title for Chelsea - he can be backed to score first at 3/1 with Betfred.

It is important to note that in the case of a surprise Chelsea defeat, nothing but a United win will suffice, as a draw at Old Trafford will still hand the title to Carlo Ancelotti's side on goal difference.

However, as this game should be a walk in the park for Chelsea the real betting value lies elsewhere this weekend, specifically at Old Traford where Manchester United could buckle under the strain of a long season.

My Tip Of The Weekend:
Although Sir Alex Ferguson's sides are renowned for achieving the impossible, the current crop have looked fragile at times this season, particularly in defence. I think the pressure could get to United, and they are playing a tough no-nonsense Stoke outfit, so Betfred's 13/2 for a draw at Old Trafford looks the value bet of the day.

Chelsea v Wigan - Sunday 9th May, kick-off 4pm, live on Sky Sports 1.
Man Utd v Stoke - Sunday 9th May, kick-off 4pm, live on Sky Sports 3.

By Drew Swainston
(Guest writer from Betfred on behalf of Beer Footy and Birds!)

Monday, May 03, 2010

Crystal Palace F.C - What A Season ! The Facts and Stats.

Darren Ambrose celebrates putting Palace 2-1 up at Hillsborough in the final game of the season.

Palace boss Paul Hart & his management team celebrate Championship survival at the final whistle yesterday, whilst Sheffield Wednesday boss Alan Irvine can only look down in frustration, as his team are relegated.

Crystal Palace Football Club - Season 2009/10

Final game of the 2009/10 Season: Sheff Wed 2-2 Crystal Palace
Final Championship Position: 21st
Total games played season 2009/10: 53 ( inc. 7 cup ties)
Total league games played: 46
Points total: 49
Games won in total: 14
Games drawn in total: 17
Games lost in total: 15
Home form: Won 8 Drew 5 Lost 10
Away form: Won 6 Drew 12 Lost 5
Total goals scored: 50
Total goals conceded: 53
Clean sheets in the league: 9
Top scorer: Darren Ambrose (20 in ALL competitions)
Most assists: Darren Ambrose (11 in ALL competitions)
Hat-rick(s): One - Danny Butterfield v. Wolves FA Cup 4th Rd Replay, Selhurst Park, 02/02/10
Most games played by a single player: 53 - Shaun Derry
Players sent off: 5 - Lee Hills, Paddy McCarthy, Neil Danns, Matt Lawrence, Claude Davis
Most yellow cards: 12 - Clint Hill
FA Cup progress: Reached the 5th Round. Lost to Aston Villa in a replay, 24/02/10
Coca-Cola League Cup progress: Reached 2nd Round. Lost to Manchester City, 27/08/09
Highest home league attendance: 20,642 v. Newcastle, 22/08/09
Lowest home league attendance: 12,328 v. Swansea, 09/02/10
Biggest home win: 4-1 v. Blackpool, 03/10/09
Biggest home defeat: 0-4 v. Scunthorpe, 12/09/09
Biggest away win: 4-2 v. Reading, 08/12/09
Biggest away defeat: 0-2 v. Newcastle, 27/01/10
Points total without deduction: 59
Finishing position without points deduction: 13th