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Day: July 24, 2011

The Twohundredpercent Premier League Previews: Chelsea

When UEFA announced its Financial Fair Play regulations last summer, several names immediately sprang to mind as clubs that would likely have to change many of their habits from recent years if they were to be allowed to continue to compete in European competitions under the new rules. As such, last season could perhaps be regarded as one of stasis for the club after their double-winning season, and this summer seems unlikely to see vast amounts of money being spent in the pursuit of the Champions League trophy which has become characterised in some quarters as the primary obsession of the club’s owner, Roman Abramovich. The new season, therefore, sees Chelsea in a curious position. On the one hand, expectation levels remain high and the club’s support retains expectations of being able to seriously challenge for the Premier League and Champions League titles. On the other, though, the club has to change its financial practices if it is to pass the Financial Fair Play regulations. With this in mind, Chelsea have already made their important signing of the summer, in the form of the arrival of Andres Villa-Boas as the club’s seventh manager in the eight years since Abramovich took ownership of the club. There have been several acres of coverage already written on Villa-Boas’ achievements at Porto, but it worth dwelling upon Abramovich’s previous history in dealing with...

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Match Of The Week: Haringey Borough 2-4 Wingate & Finchley

The new season continues to loom large on the horizon, and pre-season friendlies are a chance for clubs to try out their new signings ahead of the season proper starting. Non-League Day’s Mike Bayly went to see two clubs from the bottom of football’s food chain in their preparations for the new season. The London Borough of Haringey was recently named as the thirteenth most deprived area in England. Many of its residents eke out an existence on benefits, in a district plagued by gang problems and violent crime. A few years ago, a local councillor took up the case of an elderly disabled woman whose council owned property had remained virtually untouched since the 1940s; despite promises from the local authorities, she had spent years without a bathroom in the flat. It is unknown how many other properties in the area have witnessed the same neglect. Haringey’s most impoverished area is usually reckoned to be Northumberland Park, near Tottenham Hotspur’s White Hart Lane ground, which has the highest proportion of working age adults claiming out of work benefits of any ward in London. It is a stark contrast to the opulence seeping through the cracks of Spurs’ skyline dominating stadium, which draws – or certainly drew – its fan base from this poverty stricken borough. Over the last two seasons, the club have spent over £100M on transfer...

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