Friday, 28 January 2011

Letting Torres go could go either way for Liverpool

As we near the end of a relatively quiet January transfer window, things are starting to get a bit hectic!

With teams battling for players and lots of cut price deals circling the footballing world so teams can make a profit of players going out of contractin the summer, one transfer story has appeared from the crowd yesterday that has got everybody talking.

Yesterday morning Liverpool rejected an offer from Chelsea for their star striker Fernando torres in what is a believed fee of £35-40 million pounds.The Liverpool striker a few hours ago submitted a written transfer request to the club asking they consider Chelsea's offer as he is interested in the move and a new challenge.

Liverpool quickly rejected the request expecting him to honour his contract however has the damage already been done?

Fernando Torres is a fan favourite and the news will worry Liverpool fans who hope to hold on to Torres as they try and fight their way back to the top 4 after a disappointing season last season under Rafael Benitez which had carried on under Roy Hodgson before his dismissal.

Despite not having the best of seasons so far which has mostly been plagued by injuries or disappointing performances, Torres is one of the major players at Liverpool with 9 in 26 games so far this season and along with Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher , was  "indespensable" to the club until today where things seem to have changed.

On the same day Torres is wanting out, Liverpool have signed a highly rated and so far proven goalscorer in Luis suarez from Ajax for £23 million pounds.

Suarez scored 111 in 159 games for Ajax and is rated as a top class player with his very impressive pedigree and his impressive displays in the world cup for Uruguay,in which he scored three goals while also being involved in the controversial "handball incident."

Suarez may be replacement for Torres or he may be his new striking partner but if he is the replacement and he continues to play the way he has for Ajax and Uruguay, Suarez will help Liverpool forget about Torres and will be their new hero while Liverpool get lots of money in from the Torres sale which would help invest in other areas of the team which has to be done if Liverpool are going to improve.

Selling Torres however, could lead to Liverpool slipping even more than they have as Torres has a prescence and like Steven Gerrard for Liverpool,when they are on the park the other players seem better and more confident with great players lik Torres alongside them and they know they can create magic, scoring great goals every so often.

We will see in the next few days if Torres moves or if he stays until at least the end of the season but sand in boss Kenny Dagleish has a job on his hands making sure Liverpool are fit to continue their rise up the table no matter if he stays or goes.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Miller's departure not the main problem for Rangers in their title challenge:

Saturday's loss at Tynecastle to Hearts has caused a bit of doubt among the Rangers support and the media on whether Rangers will reclaim the SPL title for the 54th time this season.Has the departure of Kenny Miller cost Rangers the SPL title?

The answer is no. Kenny Miller's departure is a big blow and his 22 goals have helped Rangers to the position they find themselves in right now however there is a much bigger problem than where the goals will come from.

There are strikers at Rangers who have what it takes to step up to the plate such as Jelavic, Naismith and Lafferty who could fill that void for Rangers and rumours seem to suggest Kris Commons will be at Ibrox any day now which would be a good signing and would bolster Rangers' attacking numbers, however Rangers may have to change the way they play if the title is to be taken back to Ibrox once again.

Rangers never seem in a rush when attacking and nobody seems to go for goal straight away. It sometimes looks like they are trying to avoid having to take a shot by passing it quickly and shifting the responsibility.When this is mixed with the odd case of mistaken choice when shooting Rangers don't seem to create many clear cut chances and hardly any of the chances Rangers create are inside the box.

The strikers are not given the support they need from a midfield which is able to pass the ball around well but rarely manages to create clear cut chances and this leads to frustration in front of goal which has been shown particularly in last few games against Inverness and Hearts .

The defence isn't exactly in great form either and at times is a bit shaky and for me there is two main reasons or players to blame for this: Lee Mculloch and Madjid Bougherra.

Lee Mculloch hasn't made an impact in a game for Rangers in a while and Madjid Bougherra has to start staying in his position as he is leaving the defence open for a counter attack every time he tries to play winger, midfield and striker and he should just leave these roles to the people who were originally put in these positions by the manager.

Rangers are still in a good enough position and a win tomorrow away to Hibs will help return some of the confidence as well as getting revenge against Hearts at Ibrox next week. With two games in hand over a Celtic side five points aheads of Rangers, Rangers need to win their games in hand and continue winning to maintain their position at the top of the pile.

A 4-4-2 with Jelavic and Naismith up front seems to be the best option available to provide the right stuff needed up front and both can find the net which is needed.

Rangers may stick to the way they are playing and it could come right but no matter how they play, the next few weeks are crucial to Rangers' season and they have to play at the highest level they can and if they do this, they will be in the best position possible to keep up their chase of trophies on four different fronts and winning the league with maybe a few other trophies would be the perfect way for Walter Smith to bow out at Rangers.

A change in style would help make this perfect ending for Walter's second reign at Ibrox and help make it an easier trasition to whoever the next manager is.

Monday, 10 January 2011

El Hadji Diouf - lower life form than a Sewer Rat?

"In my opinion he is an absolute disgrace"-Jamie Mackie
"I would say he was a sewer rat but that would be offensive to sewer Rats."-Neil Warnock

The words of QPR manager Neil Warnock and striker Jamie Mackie about El Hadji Diouf could not be anymore spot on when discussing a man who has constantly disgraced Football fans in the Premiership, fans of football and just people in general with his constant antics that shame the football club he is playing for at the time.

Yesterday which was Sunday during the Blackburn/ QPR  Fa Cup game  Scottish International striker Jamie Mackie contested for a 50/50 ball with the Blackburn defender Givet however they collided and both players had to be stretchered off after the incident which had no malice or intent and the players even chatted after the game to show there was no feelings.

As Mackie lay on the floor writhing in agony with what has now been revealed to be a broken leg ,El Hadji Diouf ran over shouting obscenities at Mackie branding him a disgrace and screaming "F**k you and F**k your leg you are a disgrace among other obscenities"

Every other player looked on ashamed and even his team mates looked ashamed as diouf disgraced himself again.It was a fair challenge which both players had every right to go for and Mackie done no wrong.He is an honest professional who was not in the wrong at all and his season is now over which is a shame as Mackie has been on form this season with his 9 goal helping QPR to the top of the Championship. He also made his Scotland debut this season which means he will never forget this season although it had an abrupt ending which was not fair for the player but he will be back fighting next year and he has expressed his support for his team mates to fire QPR to the Premiership so he can face Diouf again.

As Mackie's career gets better and better, the same cannot be said Diouf. Hated by many fans across Britain for his antics, Diouf continues to shame wherever he goes.

When Diof was at Liverpool he caused all the wrong headlines when during a Uefa Cup game against Celtic at Parkhead he spat at a fan in the home support. The incident caused furious backlash and Diouf was banned for a few games as a result of the incident.

Diouf hit the headlines again when he spat at Middlesborough fns during a loan spell with Bolton. And a few weeks later he was caught on camera spitting in Arjen De Zeeuw's face who played for Portsmouth at the time. Diouf was charged by police and given another ban.
El Hadji Diouf

Diouf has showed time and time again he will never learn and Blackburn should disassociate with Diouf as quick as possible as he has shown he has trouble on many occasions and he doesn't seem like the type of player who was once voted as African footballer of the year.

There is no doubt he could be good if he kept his calm and didn't go crazy all the time.He has had enough chances to change and he never has. Neil Warnock describing him as worse than a sewer rat is probably one of the nicest things anybody has said about Diouf and it is hard not to agree with Warnock.

I think most teams would rather have a sewer rat in there squad.

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

10 Team SPL may not be popular but it is necessary

Today the SPL clubs voted in agreement for a 10 team SPL tier which may be seen by many fans as a big problem. The proposal has been widely seen by fans as the wrong move and a backwards step. A recent survey showed. 88% of the people asked in a recent survey of Scottish Football fans were against the proposal of a 10 team SPL and fans of teams outside the SPL are also against regionalised leagues and Football fans will feel hard done by after showing their view against the plans.

However, the plans are going to go ahead and although seen as a problem now, a ten team SPL could be a move forward in Scottish Football instead of the backwards step many see it as.

A 16 team or 18 team SPL may be seen as an exciting league setup however an 16 or 18 team league would never work with the way Scottish Football is right now. A 10 team SPL makes sense as it will not be a massive change with only two teams dropping out of the SPL and it would get rid of the horrible split.

The split doesn't work and causes many problems as it never worls out even. The team who finishes 7th in the league before split can finish 5th or 6th after the split which is stupid and the fact that every year a few teams has played another team three times at home or away and once the reverse in the league as the SPL fixtures always end up confusing shows obvious problems that have been in the game for years and should never have been allowed to happen in the first place so good riddance to them.

Play offs are the same for promotion and relegation or for the title itself. Why should a team that finishes 8th be relegated before the team that finishes 9th? Why should the team that finishes 4th be able to win the league instead of the team that finishes 1st? It doesn't make sense and it doesn't matter how exciting it would be it shouldn't be aloud to happen. The funniest thing about the call for the SPL title playoffs is the teams calling for them are the teams who are against the split!

The new SPL plans will reportedly bring more money to the clubs in the SPL which will be one of the main reasons for the new SPL plans being passed.The game needs to be improved and mnay clubs earning more will be very beneficial to the game. An SPL 2 if it is introduced will also make more money available to the teams in the SPL 2 and this will be great for the game.

I have already shown my support for the plans and i am very happy that the 12 team SPL will be no more and it will take the split with it. It may not be everybodys cup of tea but in the short term at least it will be beneficial to the Scottish game until improved plans are created.Lets hope the next meeting to discuss the introduction of earlier season starts and winter breaks are just as productive.