Category: Latest

Birmingham City: A Mess Of The Blues 

Since relegation from the Premier League at the end of the 2011/12 season, life hasn’t been particularly easy for the supporters of Birmingham City. A fourth place finish the following season was a decent enough return to the peculiar world of the Football League Championship, but since then the club has returned only two relatively soporific mid-table finishes and a narrow escape from the further ignominy of a further relegation to League One, on goal difference. It may even be worth considering that the most entertainment that Blues supporters have been able to grasp at over the last three...

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Podcast Extra: Saving The World Cup

Footballers play too many matches these days. International football is dead. Two pulsating soccer soundbites that no self-respecting football pundit would be without: check them out the next time you watch Match of the Day, they are both there, discreetly bulging in the pockets of their shiny, shiny trousers. And FIFA seem hell-bent on turning the World Cup finals into… well, something or other. We’re not quite what, but we don’t like the smell of it. Now, before we go any further, if you’re interested in listening to this week’s Twohundredpercent podcast and the draw referred to below as...

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Podcast 79: A 128 Team World Cup Finals

There’ll be an article or two on the subject of Gianni Infantino’s recent proposals as the Chief Executive of FIFA on these pages over the next few days or so, and with this in mind, this week’s Twohundredpercent podcast takes his words to their logical extreme. A straight, 128-team knockout tournament. One leg per match, with the final rounds being played as a competition. We argue about the format – a little bit – and we argue about the nature of the way in which we chose the teams – the easiest, most expedient way, is it turns out...

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Football League Review: Nipping At Their Heels

At the start of this season, the appointment of David Wagner by Huddersfield Town was considered one of the more innovative of the summer. A former assistant to Jurgen Klopp at Borussia Dortmund, Wagner is one of European football’s new bright young things, and it didn’t take long before bigger clubs were sniffing around him after this team’s strong start to their Football League Championship season. This faded somewhat as Huddersfield’s early season form dissipated, but yesterday afternoon they finally returned to winning ways with a win from an eventful afternoon against Bristol City. The visiting goalkeeper, Frank Fielding,...

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Beitar Jerusalem: Forever Pure Stupidity

“At least no British club is like… that,” I had to repeat on an inner-self tape-loop as I watched “Forever Pure, Football and Racism in Jerusalem,” the latest episode of BBC4’s “Storyville” series of international documentaries. The July 2016 film highlighted Israeli Premier League (IPL) Beitar Jerusalem’s sordidly-racist fanbase and Beitar’s nutcase Russian owner, “convicted gun-trafficker” Arcadi Gaydamak, during a 2012/13 season whose second half was pock-marked by fan revolts which nearly relegated Beitar. Indeed, film-maker Maya Zinshtein, like Rob Reiner in “Spinal Tap,” got “more, a lot more” than she could have imagined. Beitar are considered part of...

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