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Day: May 11, 2008

Red Is The Colour

The best team, it has to be said, won. Manchester United have been the best team in the Premier League this season, no matter how unctuous they have been at times, and no matter how doggedly they were pursued for the length of the season by Chelsea. This afternoon’s win at Wigan Athletic was a reasonably run of the mill affair, leaving Sky Sports some distance short of the amount of drama that they had promised their viewers that there would be this afternoon. While United went into cruise control at The JJB Stadium, Chelsea were stuttering and stalling at Stamford Bridge against Bolton Wanderers. United’s result meant that what happened at Stamford Bridge (barring a twenty goal win) was largely irrelevant, but Matthew Taylor’s late equalizer finally created a little daylight between the top two and settled any nerves that Bolton may have had over slipping through the trapdoor and back into the Championship. At the bottom of the table, things were much more tense. It looked for most of the afternoon as if things would stay very much as they were. Reading were strolling to victory at Pride Park against a predictably wretched Derby County and Birmingham City were handing out a last day thrashing to Blackburn Rovers, though it was too little, too late as long as Reading won at Derby. Everything was thrown upside down...

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Ten Days In May

There are few things in life more odious than the sectarianism that still somehow manages to attach itself to the rivalry between Rangers and Celtic. Even though the two sides play each other a minimum of four times each season, every match between them seems is like a spit-flecked stand off between two angry men, both of whom hold the other a being responsible for all the ills of the world, singularly unable to come to terms with the simple reality that both have more in common with each other than either would like to admit. The very name “Old Firm” derives from the fact that both clubs were, in their early days, quite happy to exploit the commercial benefits of this sectarianism. Such matters make it very difficult to be objective about Rangers or Celtic from a footballing point of view, but even their harshest rivals have to concede that this year’s Rangers team has a chance of doing something remarkable – winning four trophies in one season. Here’s the story so far. They have already won the Scottish League Cup, having beaten Dundee United in penalties at Hampden Park earlier this season. In the Scottish Premier League, they are a point behind Celtic, but have a game in hand. They have three league matches left to play. They are already through to the final of the UEFA...

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