16 Aug 2011

Foul play at Manchester

Sheikh Mansour

UEFA's financial fair play boss has revealed he has "some questions" about Manchester City's sponsorship deal with Etihad Airways.The Abu Dhabi government-owned airline, the club's shirt sponsors, last month struck a new 10-year deal for stadium naming rights and to fund the proposed new Etihad Campus. City did not disclose financial details but it was reported the agreement was worth £400million. With Etihad having close links to City's owner Sheikh Mansour, a member of the Abu Dhabi royal family, some critics have suggested this could be an attempt to circumvent UEFA's new financial fair play regulations(It’s no glory on Sheikh Mansour head at least).

Jean-Luc Dehaene, chairman of UEFA's Club Financial Control Panel, was on Tuesday quoted by the BBC saying: "I have some questions, yes.

"But it would be dangerous for our authority if we take judgements without facts."

He added: "If we see clubs that are looking for loopholes we will act.
"It is not enough to say, 'We've got a sponsorship contract and that's okay' if the contract is out of line."

City have previously said the speculated figures concerning the Etihad deal are "not accurate".
City have also underlined the importance of the agreement to the Etihad Campus project, which will feature a new 80-acre state-of-the-art training complex near to the Etihad Stadium.
The facility will also include an academy for 400 players, 16 football pitches, injury rehabilitation units, a 7,000-capacity stadium and staff offices.
City chief executive Garry Cook told the BBC: "The Etihad Campus, which constitutes some 210 acres is unique in its breadth, depth and length of term.

"It involves the tradition, which is shirt sponsorship, the naming rights of the stadium, but what we haven't seen in football is a campus, creating a place to be, to work.

"We've got a great relationship with Etihad. It's a long-term programme and they are equally very excited by it."

I guess one could quote Mr.Barton; if City gets more money now it would be considered cheating in football manager.

Double trouble for Arsenal


Arsenal might be in trouble when facing Liverpool and Manchester United in the coming games. Ivory Coast forward Gervinho is out for 3 matches after FA dismissed a claim from the Gunners following his red card in Saturday’s game.

The 24-year-old Ivory Coast forward was sent off in the second half of the goalless draw at St James' Park for striking Magpies midfielder Joey Barton following what the home side claimed was a dive in the penalty area.

Alex Song
On Monday, the Gunners lodged a claim that the standard three-game ban was "clearly excessive", but an FA regulatory commission heard the case on Tuesday and ruled that the punishment should stand.

Arsenal midfielder Alex Song faces a separate charge of violent conduct after his stamp on Barton, which had inflamed the situation, was missed by referee Peter Walton.

Gervinho will miss the games against Liverpool, Manchester United and Swansea - and Song could also be hit by the same retrospective punishment.This will be a big blow for Wenger who already have lost Fabregas while Nasri is reported out of the Emirates stadium in the days to come. 

Premier League Blogspot Star pick of the week; Sergio Aguero

Sergio Aguero

Club/national                   Year                                      Matches played/Goals

Independient                   2003-2006                                          54/(23)

Atletico Madrid               2006-2011                                          174/(74)

Manchester City              2011-                                                    1/(2)

Argentina U20                 2005-2007                                           11/(6)

Argemtina                        2007-2011                                           22/(10)

Born:  02/06/1988 – Quilmes
Height:  5'6"
Weight  10.9st

Honours: Europe League: 2010 (Atlético Madrid); European Super Cup: 2010 (Atlético Madrid); FIFA U-20 World Cup: 2005, 2007 (Argentina U-20); Primera A: 2003 (Independiente)

Sergio Leonel ‘Kun’ Agüero del Castillo, nicknamed as El Kun, is a young Argentina international footballer who currently features for Manchester City.  Aguero is considered as a young pretender to the Argentine great Diego Armando Maradona, also being married to his daughter.  

Aguero plays as a striker and made his professional debut for Argentine club Independiente in July, 2003 becoming the youngest player to debut in the Argentine First Division at only 15 years and 35 days. He played successfully for Independiente until the summer of 2006 when he was signed by Atletico Madrid.
Sergio Aguero didn’t impress much in his first season at Atletico but in the 2007-2008 season stood out as the best player for Atlético and one of the stars in La Liga. He guided Atletico Madrid to a spot in the 2008-2009 UEFA Champions League.

Atletico Madrid paid 15 million Euros for Aguero and he has been every penny of that money. With his short stature, Aguero has a low centre of gravity and is nimble and quick too. Aguero is often compared to El Diego as much for his playing style as for his talent.

Sergio Aguero was the star of the 2007 FIFA U-20 World Cup and won the Golden Boot and the Golden Ball honours in the competition for his thrilling displays for Argentina. He has played 5 matches for the senior Argentine team since making his debut in 2007.

Manchester City is said to have payed Atletico Madrid around 40 million pounds for the young Argentinean striker. Aguero maid one of the most impressive debuts in the history if the premiership when he came on in the second half and got 2 goals and 1 assist before the game was finished.  Could prove to be the signing of the season if he can keep the goals flowing.

Game week one result and comments EPL 11/12

  August 13
Blackburn R.
Wolverhampton W.
Aston Villa
Bolton W.
Wigan A.
Newcastle U.

August 14
Stock C.
West Brom. A
Manchester U.

August 15
Manchester C.
Swansea C.

Looking into game week one it was for me a disappointing start to the season, with some positive and negative notifications. The round only gave us 16 goals in 9 games and 3 0-0 games. I personal watched 5 matches this weekend. First off was the game between Liverpool and Sunderland at Anfield. The home side dominated the first 30 min or so of the game, but the rest of the 60 min Sunderland was just as good or even better then Liverpool. At the end of the game one could say that Sunderland deserved the point and could actually have take all 3 points when Cattermole got a change in overtime from 16 meter, but blew the shot wide and over goal. Liverpool could do well this season if they can keep the momentum going for more than 30 min of a game. Sunderland looked strong take into consideration that Anfield is still a hard place to travel. From all the new signings I would say that Downing and Enrique look strong for Liverpool while Sunderland looks to have done two good signings in Brown and Larsson. Man of the match in this game was Louis Suarez for me. The striker looked very strong considering he had only 5 days with pre-season training before the game.

The second match I watched was Newcastle U against Arsenal. Both teams had a lot of trouble during the summer and I didn’t have much hope for a good match. And I would say I was right in my predictions. Arsenal looked still like Arsenal, but didn’t have the sting they needed to win the game, and Newcastle, well they didn’t look very impressing. Barton was the one who made the most of the game for the home side and got Gervinho sent off. Barton claimed the Arsenal striker had dived in the penalty area and confronted Gervinho in an aggressive style which should in my opinion ended in a red card to Barton as well. After this Barton went down like a girl when Gervinho threw, what looked to be a slap rather than a punch. So who was the best movie actor or Mr. Hollywood here Barton!? The worst part is that Barton actually is a very good footballer when he plays the game. Well back to the game again, it was more or less the story of the game. It was a lot of free kicks and yellow cards, 8 yellow and one red if I remember correct. Which is too high for any football match, and I bet FA will have a look at the game in the days to come. Both sides look to be in trouble this season in my opinion like I predicted before the season started. Gervinho impressed me in the game until he got sent off. He always looked a treat and could prove to be one of the best signings this season

The 3rd match was between Stoke and Chelsea. Yet another 0-0 match, which didn’t impress that much. Chelsea had a lot of possession in the game but don’t have the finishing touch which is needed still. But that being said, playing away to Stoke is not an easy away game and I believe that Chelsea will be fighting for the premiership title. Stoke looks strong on set pieces and solid in defence at home. Players that impressed my was new signing Woodgate. If he can stay fit, he will be a good signing this season for Stoke.

My 4th match was between West Brom and Manchester U. United looked a lot like Liverpool in their match. United was very impressive the first 25-30 min, but after that West Brom came more and more into the game. And before Youngs 2-1 winning goal, West Brom looked like they could actually could have taken all 3 points from United. But Sir Alex Fergusons team still have players that can win these tight games alone, and Ashley Young is one of those. Even though United played poor they got 3 points on a difficult plays to travel to, and are still the team to beat this season. Roy Hodgsons team looked strong and will take a lot of points at home this season I’m sure. Players that impressed in the game were new signing Ashley Young for United, while on West Brom Long and Tchoyi looked strong. Man of the match with out of doubt Ashley Young.

The 5th match I watched was finally a one which actually had some good football in it. The game was between Manchester City and Swansea. First of Swansea impressed me with good football, and they actually showed that they got a good team which can play with a lot of possession in the premiership as well. The promoted side played well in almost 60 min before City turned up the pace a nudge and trashed Swansea 4-0 in the end. One can’t talk about this game without mentioning new signing Sergio Aguero at City. He got around 30 min on the field and nicked two goals and an assist before the game was over. One could ask if there has ever been a better debut in the history of the premiership. That being said it was still just against newly promoted Swansea, so it might be early to call it a super signing, but it’s going to be fun to watch City and Aguero this season I think. Swansea also looked very good for a long period of the game and I still believe that the team could manage to clear of relegation. Man of the match for me was Adam Johnson who always looked a treat and was behind almost everything City produced. 

The rest of the games I didn’t watch, but Boltons 4-0 victory away to QPR is a strong result. I thought QPR would kick start the promotion with the home win against Bolton, but I guess they weren’t prepared for the tempo in the premiership just yet. Wolverhampton got a good start to the season with a win away to Blackburn. While Wigan and Norwich drew 1-1 in a game which Wigan should have one if they want to stay up this season. The Tottenham – Everton game was postponed due to the riots in London.