In today’s roundup, we solve the following mysteries: was James Bond any good at football, why Liverpool fans are wasting their time, whose responsibility is it to stop the tapping-up of young players, and which club in Manchester is more popular?
Manchester United wanted James Bond
A hat-tip to Steve Amoia for pointing me to this slightly old article: apparently Manchester United were once interested in Sean Connery when he was a kid.
What does ‘interested’ exactly mean though? Were they interested in him like United were once interested in Djemba-Djemba (no offense to Sean Connery or Mr Djemba), or like United *should be* interested in Karim Benzema? Did Matt Busby miss out on the World’s Best Player in the 60s?
Liverpool training ground vandalised
The Mirror proudly points us to vandalism carried out by frustrated Liverpool fans on the walls of Liverpool’s training ground. I never understood the point of graffiti (apart from being annoying as hell) and for that matter, about supporters protesting about a manager’s team selections. Rafa doesn’t care, you dumbasses.
What’s more worrying is when senior players (like, vice captains) talk about how the squad shouldn’t be rotated – both Carragher and Lampard have spoken on the matter, although Lampard’s pissed about missing out on scoring in Greece (get it?) and Carragher…well, maybe Carragher should point out that the support cast isn’t playing up to snuff and needs a clearout? He didn’t say too much to be honest, just that having the first-team squad ON THE PITCH was a good idea. Having a goalkeeper in the starting XI is a good idea too Jamie, don’t you think?
Italian club Reggina have reported Chelsea to the Italian Football Federation and Uefa over an alleged approach to one of their players.
They say 15-year-old Vincenzo Camilleri refused to play in a game for them and will have talks with Chelsea instead.
“He preferred to travel to London with his mother and a type of agent to reach a financial agreement with Chelsea,” said Reggina president Lillo Foti.
So Chelsea offered to pay for VC’s mum to come over to London on an all-expenses paid shopping trip. Of course she’s going to agree, and of course they’re going to go over and have a kickabout with Chelsea’s kids.
If he’s good enough to play for Chelsea, I think he should be there. If he’s going to join and be shipped off to Shrewsbury after a season or two, there’s no point in him going over, is it? A kid that age needs someone with some sense guiding them, so let’s hope, for his sake, that he’s that good.
4. Blatter and Player Quotas
To quote Sepp Blatter:
“Over the years and decades, by signing more and more foreign players, clubs have gradually lost their identity, first locally and regionally.”
I thought it was because they priced the locals out of season tickets? Or because they restricted open fan access to players? Or because of the takeovers?
Blatter has assumed – dangerously – that clubs have lost their local and regional identities. Him and Platini have always had the Premier League in mind as the prime example of all the ‘EVIL’ that money does to football. FIFA / Uefa will have to prove that a) clubs have lost their identity and b) foreign players are the underlying cause of it.
As Scott pointed out the other day, Manchester City, a club that (wrongly) claims to have more fans in Manchester than Manchester United, had no local lads in the derby on 10th Feb. United, by comparison, had 4 players in the squad.
Isn’t it the media who shape our perceptions on ‘identity’ and ‘traditions’? United still have very strong roots locally and regionally, and even exporting the Premier League for Game 39 will not change the fact that United is, and will always be, a Manchester club.
5. Celtic invest in youth
A good feature by the BBC on how Celtic are heavily investing in youth development – have a read.