Posts Tagged Tottenham Hotspur

Top 25 teams on the continent

While Manchester City are basking in the glory of a historic title win. Their arch rivals Manchester United are trophyless unless you count the Community Shield.  The English Premier League has been turned upside down. While in Italy an Old Lady is back on the throne. In Spain, Barcelona are hurting and Atletico Madrid are the new UEFA Europa League champions.

Here’s how it all adds up on the European Power Index.

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World’s Richest Football Clubs Revealed

With the awards season upon us, its no surprise that Deloitte’s sport unit have revealed the world’s richest football clubs list . Real Madrid who have dominated this particular list for the last 4 years have yet again topped it with annual revenues of 401.4m euros. The phenomenal figures based on data from 2008/09 season also see’s Real Madrid become the first global sports team to top annual revenues of 400m euros according to the Football Money League. Real Madrid’s arch rivals Barcelona take the second spot ahead of English Premier League Champions Manchester United who drop to third. Manchester United had dominated the list for 8 years until Real Madrid dethroned them. The authors however, do point out that Manchester United would have been top of the list had the value of the pound not fallen. Despite the exchange rate issues, seven of the top 20 teams listed in the rich-list are from England. Tottenham (15th), Manchester City (19th) and relegated club Newcastle United (20th) making it in the second half of the list. All the 20 clubs are from the ‘big five’ Eurpean leagues with Germany contributing 5 clubs, Italy 4 and 2 each from Spain and France.

World’s Richest Football Clubs

  1. Real Madrid: 401.4m euros
  2. Barcelona: 365.9m euros
  3. Man Utd: 327m euros
  4. Bayern Munich: 289.5m euros
  5. Arsenal: 263m euros
  6. Chelsea: 242.3m
  7. Liverpool: 217m euros
  8. Juventus: 202.3m euros
  9. Inter Milan 196.5m euros
  10. AC Milan: 196.5.m euros

This Deloitte review however, may be a little misleading as it does not include the cost of transfer fees or player wages, or VAT and other sales taxes, and concentrates solely on day-to-day income from football business. The income includes money from ticket sales, sponsorship, merchandising and other commercial revenues, television monies, corporate hospitality, and non-match day stadium use. With Portsmouth becoming the first Premier League club to enter administration, and giants such as Manchester United and Liverpool in financial trouble despite performing well in the league shows that the problem of overspending is still a major concern. The Deloitte list however does indicate that their is still a lot of money in the game and with careful administration through measures such as wage-ceilings and prudent transfer fees, football can get through this precarious financial period unscathed.

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The Winner Takes it all…

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In football, the saying, to the winner go the spoils couldn’t be more true. The minute a footballer scores a few goals, he is immediately put in the same league as the greats of the game. And God forbid, if he makes a mistake in the heat of the moment, all his past greatness is forgotten and he is immediately an overrated talentless footballer. The headlines in the past week have been dominated by two individual footballers, Thierry Henry and Jermaine Defoe. Thierry Henry had his moment and could have become a hero cherished by millions (minus the French) for eternity or he could have fallen from grace for millions. Unfortunately for Henry, in the heat of the moment he didn’t think selfishly enough and now he is being termed a cheat, a liar, a shame, a no-gooder, an unethical person and a villain of the worst kind, an overrated footballer who was never really good enough. It seems everyone is trying hard to forget the magic of Arsenal’s all-time leading goal scorer with 226 goals in all competitions, the two time winner of PFA Players’ Player of the Year and three time winner of the Football Writers’ Association Footballer of the Year – Theirry Henry. Ironic, how almost all football journalists now seem to want to remember Henry only by the recent mistake that he made.

As is true of life, when a hero falls, a replacement is quickly sought. Jermaine Defoe’s 5 goals in the second half of the, 9-1 thriller between Tottenham Hotspur and Wigan Athletic couldn’t have come at a better time. Defoe’s horrible stamp on Aaron Mokoena in his return match against his old employers at Portsmouth which earned him a three match ban has been long forgotten and he is enjoying his sudden rise from a villain who manager Harry Rednapp had been absolutely livid with for the misdemeanor to a hero who manager Harry Rednapp is now busy hailing as the “best finisher” in the English game. His captain for the day, Jonathan Woodgate was even more generous with his praise saying, “I think he’s the sharpest striker not only in the Premier League but probably in the world. He’s that sharp he simply doesn’t miss, in training or in matches.”

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The winner takes it all and I can’t begin to imagine what praise would have been directed the strikers way had he got a Premier League record sixth goal of the afternoon. On the other hand, Wigan Athletic players who suffered their worst result  in club’s 31-year league history, making them the first English Premier League team to concede nine goals in a single match since Ipswich Town in 1995 have decided to refund the money to supporters who travelled to White Hart Lane on Sunday (November 22) to watch their team get so completely thrashed in the humiliating 9-1 loss. Jermaine Defoe’s 5 goals were added to by goals from Peter Crouch, Aaron Lennon, Niko Kranjcar and a  painful Chris Kirkland own goal.

Wigan Athletic Captain Mario Melchiot said the players had “badly let down” their travelling supporter and will therefore provide a full refund of the match ticket price. “This is a gesture we have to make and pay them back for their tremendous loyalty,” the Latics captain added.

Also, possibly related to the shameful result, Wigan Athletic today postponed the planned official opening of their new club store in the town. A spokesperson said: “The club apologises for any inconvenience caused to its supporters but stresses that the event will go ahead in the very near future, as soon as a new date can be arranged.” In the beautiful game, the winner is entitled to it all and then some, while the loser waits for his time to shine, good thing that it doesn’t take much to be a winner, a couple of goals can get you there.

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Carling Cup Quarter-Final Draw

carlingcupThe Carling Cup final 8 draw was announced and  has thrown together some interesting fixtures.  Chelsea take on Blackburn, and going by our 5-0 result against them in the premier league, seems like an easy enough game for the Blues. Oh and while I am on the 5-0 topic, Manchester United, the “Champions” (bleh!)  could only score 2 goals against them last night, and that too after much ranting from Sir Alex.

Emmanuel Adebayor’s new club Manchester City have drawn his old club Arsenal. Last time the two teams met, Adebayor stomped on  Van Persie’s face and infamously ran the length of the pitch to celebrate in front of the traveling Arsenal fans after he scored a goal. He managed to antagonize all Arsenal supporters, the Neutrals and the City fans as well for the trouble he put his new club in. So Arsenal go back to  City of Manchester Stadium to take on  Emmanuel Adebayor and his stupid tantrums. The Manchester City manager Mark Hughes who can’t afford to leave the £25 million Togolese striker on the bench in a match against an in-form Arsenal team, I suspect will be very nervous should Adebayor score. Oh, the irony! Both teams have great players and will go into this match with accounts to settle. A must-watch game which promised to be high on passion, drama and footballing skill.

Portsmouth take on Martin O’ Neill’s Aston while Manchester United play Tottenham in a repeat of last years final.

Full Fixtures

Manchester City – Arsenal
Blackburn Rovers – Chelsea
Manchester United – Tottenham Hotspur
Portsmouth – Aston Villa

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The Open Season: Stronger than Ever EPL

barclayspremierleagueIt has been a weekend of quite a few revelations in the English Premier League. The results from Saturday’s and Sunday’s matches really are an eye-opener, showing us just how much the league has changed since its inception and just how different this season is from the seasons in the past. Being in the top 4 is no longer a done deal or a privy of the traditional top four clubs with Aston Villa, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City hard on their heels threatening to replace them should they even for a second, take their eye of the ball. Aston Villa quite literally displayed this by scoring off two set pieces in their match against Chelsea.

Unlike past seasons, this season has also seen a lot less draws, which just goes to show that teams are stronger and more confident about being able to take points off of each other and off the Top 4.  Moreover the games in the league are becoming a lot more open and most teams are willing to take some risks to try and win. `Win or lose trying’ seems to be the mantra they’ve come up with after analyzing last years’ results in which Liverpool lost fewer matches than Manchester United and yet ended up second despite having done a double on the then would-be Champions.

There is a newfound confidence in the top half of the table.  West Ham who came back from 2 goals down to draw the match against an Arsenal team in explosive form, goes on to show that more and more teams are beginning to believe that if they take their best game to the top clubs, attack and don’t allow their game to be dictated by the Big 4, they have a very good chance of taking a few points off them. Add to that the fact that the top four are picking points against each other. Manchester United won against Arsenal, Chelsea walked away with all three points in their match against Liverpool and Liverpool beat Manchester United showing that the Top 4 know that a draw against each other just isn’t good enough to guarantee them a top 4 or 5 or six finish in a very competitive premier league season.

Manchester United, Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea are going to have to fight for every point. There are just no more easy games for the top teams this season. Tottenham and Aston Villa have improved their squads. Manchester City with the millions they’ve spent in the transfer market are also looking to break into the top four and have quite an impressive squad.

This time, last season, Liverpool were top of the table at 25 points while Portsmouth were seventh and had only 14 points to show. This season, should Manchester City and Aston Villa pick up any points in their games in hand, the gap between the top 7 would be just six points.

This season is probably the most open Premier League season yet, and also the most entertaining. It is a clear indication that the English Premier League has become stronger despite having lost some of its stars to the La Liga and is probably the tightest, toughest, most competitive league in the world.

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Sinfully Scrumptious Sunday

“Chocolate Brownie!”,  that is the thought I woke up with. I am a ‘weekend dieter’ which basically means that I try to undo the harm done to my body by junk food over the week by going on something of a detox diet of fruit, beer (for those additional anti-oxidants) and to add delusions of a spa-like experience to it all, Wine!  So, I  was mortified to be thinking about a hot, straight out of the oven, really chocolaty chocolate brownie even before I had gotten out of bed.

It didn’t take long, after the brownie scored from the penalty spot and a very cuddly lion rejoiced, for me to realise that I was not having a chocolate brownie craving from hell.  It was the mouth-watering Chelsea – Tottenham Hotspur game which my silly sleepy brain had got mixed up with a chocolate brownie! The London derby, Frank Lampard being pitted against his Uncle, a chance to beat Tottenham, who have had a very good season minus the match against Manchester United, a chance to stay top of the table….Yes sirree, it definitely  is a delicious fixture!

Now, the world is full of inventive geniuses like the person who invented the ‘hot chocolate brownie with vanilla ice cream,  topped with chocolate sauce and cookies sundae’. That is what the Manchester Derby does to the Chelsea-Tottenham game. It adds that dressing, the finishing touches, and that extra bit of magic to a perfect treat. Also, I am thrilled that the Chelsea game follows the Manchester Derby ‘coz I always like last bite of my sundae to be the brownie. It promises to be a sinfully scrumptious Sunday with no calories… woop woop!

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