2010

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Scottish Premier League 2010/11 Preview

Just in time for the new season, kicking off at lunchtime today, here’s the last of twohundredpercent’s pre-season previews: the SPL.

Daft as it might sound for a league with only twelve teams, there are four separate battles or mini-leagues going on within the SPL these days. The title race which has long since been restricted to the big two; the battle for third, which I almost think of as the real Scottish Championship; the chase for any remaining spots in the top six, which might sound pretty trivial but it’s about extra revenue post-split as well as the chance to chase a European spot; and lastly the struggle to avoid the single relegation spot. There is a fair amount of fluidity between these groups of course, particularly the bottom two, and a good run post-Christmas can alter the targets for the season. But by and large it’ll be reasonably clear which battle each team is fighting before we’re very far into the season.

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August 14, 2010
Ian

The Premier League Previews 2010/11, Part 20: Wolverhampton Wanderers – Age Before Beauty?

For a team that won three league titles in the 1950s, and has four FA Cup wins to it’s name, last season was as good as it’s been for a whole generation of Wolverhampton Wanderers fans, seeing as it will be 29 years since the club last embarked on consecutive seasons in the top flight….

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August 14, 2010
Ian

The Premier League Previews 2010/11, Part 19: Wigan Athletic – International Men Of Mystery

One of the dangers of writing these predictionless previews, as our Premier League previews have been on twohundredpercent this year, is that it’s very easy to fall into the trap of saying nice things about everyone. When it comes to football, my nature is always to look on the positive side anyway – I’m at a loss to explain this because I can assure you I’m one miserable git in every other walk of life, but on Saturday afternoons I become the eternal optimist. So it is that, while I’m in no sense a Wigan supporter, when I come to look at Roberto Martinez’s squad and make my best assessment of how they’ll do, it’s easy for me to look on the bright side and think – yeah, they’ll be fine.

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August 13, 2010
Ian

The Premier League Previews 2010/11, Part 18: West Ham United – Owner Over-Occupied?

It’s been an interesting few years when you look at the financial side, and the stewardship of West Ham United. When the club were last relegated in 2003, chairman Terence Brown played a canny hand when dealing with players exiting the club. Unlike other relegated clubs in previous seasons, who proclaimed a firesale the moment…

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August 13, 2010
Ian

Ken Bates: Master Of PR & All He Surveys

I should be on my knees every day, thanking my God that my only experience of Kenneth William Bates, chairman but not owner – oh no – of Leeds United, was brief and indirect. And it summed him up too. In the 1990s, Chelsea’s reserves in the old Football Combination played their “home” games at…

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August 13, 2010
Mark

The 2010 Pre-Season Previews – The Blue Square Premier

It’s time to turn our attention to the Blue Square sponsored Football Conference for the last of our divisional previews. Non-league football remains in a state of flux, but the Blue Squaare Premier continues to resemble an extra division of the Football League rather than the divisions below it. All life is here, within these…

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August 13, 2010
Ian

The Premier League Previews 2010/11, Part 17: West Bromwich Albion – Haven’t We Been Here Before?

It feels like we’ve been here before. West Bromwich Albion are promoted back to the Premier League, and have played some beautiful football to get here. Having spent eight seasons in what is now called the Championship, West Bromwich Albion have become a bit of a yo-yo club, so to speak, having not spent more…

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August 12, 2010
Ian
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