Arsenal are playing their little socks off! I really didn't expect Arsenal to play like this, but then again it is the first game of the season, so i'll have to wait until January to pass judgement on Arsene's Youth Project, but so far so good. What's gone wrong with the English Premier League. Some people will say nothing. But i beg to differ. Call me an old fashioned fart, but when i used to watch the Premier League back in the late 80's (which was fashionably called Division 1.....Liverpool were winning everything except The European Cup (now the Champions League) because English clubs were banned from European competitions because of the Hysel stadium disaster. Anyway......Liverpool were winning at least one trophy a season, Man UTD were nowhere to be found, Arsenal were rising up, Chelsea.....don't make me laugh LOL!!
The Division 1 was made up of players mainly from the UK, we a few foreigners, but it was a British division. In the late 80's there were talks of a breakaway league, and the top five clubs at the time all voted for it, the clubs being Liverpool, Man UTD, Arsenal, Everton and Tottenham.(told you Chelsea was in no-ones minds!) That league would eventually become the Premier League. Glorious moneybags Premier League. Since then we've seen the same old teams win the major trophies. There have been a few surprises along the way like Blackburn winning the Prem title in '95........Newcastle giving Man UTD a run for their money in the '96-'97 campaign. There have only been 4 winners since the Prem began in '92-'93, Man UTD winning 11 titles, Arsenal winning 3, Chelsea winning 2 and Blackburn winning 1. Now you could say that it's the same as Liverpool winning almost everything in the 80's, to some degree yes, but the money wasn't there when it was Division 1.
I don't think it's the clubs that's ruining football, it's the greedy league chiefs at the FA and Prem League!!
If the FA are so concerned about the state of English football, that there's not enough talent coming through the ranks of clubs to play at the highest level, then they should tell Platini and UEFA to F**k off and implement the foreigner rule, where a club can only have 3 foreigners in the starting 16 (11+5 subs), and can only buy 1 foreigner per season. And the owners of the clubs has to be from British. This is the only way to be fair, and at the same time make sure England national team will get the stars they're looking for in the future. I don't want to see foreign talent banished from the Premier League, whether be a manager, a coach or a player, but we need stricter rules for English football to survive. And to show i'm not prejudiced, i think every league in the world should do this, it will make the owners and managers be more careful with their money, and make them think a little harder. See who has what it takes to be called a top manager.
Ok, i've had my rant, lets hear yours. Arsenal Boss Arsene Wenger says his Young Guns can take the title this season amidst criticism of the squad being too young and doesn't have experience.
He talked about why he turned down the chance to manage Kaka, Ronaldo and Co. The reason......his Youth Project that he has going on at Arsenal.
He said: "I felt if I left I would have in some way betrayed my beliefs. "It was nothing to do with Real Madrid, it was about Arsenal.
"I knew what Real were about to do but I have a project here that I started four years ago. I could not leave at this stage of their development.
"To talk of winning the League is an audacious statement but I built this team and I want to deliver with this team. "At 22 or 23 a team is mature enough to deliver."
I am impressed with Wenger for what he's doing at Arsenal, but when is it going to fruition?, He hasn't won a thing since Pat Vieira left for Juve in 2005. In these times where there is so much pressure in football, no matter what division you're playing in, i'm surprised he still works at Arsenal!
I do applaud him for the youth project, but he has so many foreigners in that squad it is sad for English football. A club like Arsenal was known for it's good English players back in the late 80's early 90's, at one point in time the Arsenal defence was the English national team defence, and now since Wenger took over way back in the mid 90's, the production of English players from that club has fizzled to nothing.
Liverpool and Chelsea are to blame too. Even to some extent Man UTD are in the same boat with these offenders. And England fans wonder why England can't win a major trophy. This is the reason, and until Prem bosses wise up to this and the English FA grow some balls and implement the foreigner rule, it will be the same for season's to come. Chealsea are planning a 42 million pound bid for Athletico Madrid's star Sergio Aguero because owner Roman Abramovich wants to have a major name in the list of players signed by Chelsea this season.
Madrid will play in a Champions League qualifier against Panathinaikos this Wednesday, and it looks like the Spaniards will tell Chelsea that they either have to match the 50 million pound asking price or forget about the whole deal.
Chelsea's offer for the 21 year old Argentine would surpass Man City's 32.5 million pound signing of Robinho which is still a British record.
Ancelotti said: "The market finishes on August 31 and if there is some possibility to improve the squad we can do it."
I guess Ancelotti's a happy camper now that he's in a club where finances are not a worry, not like Milan where he had to sell a player to buy a player.
Seriously, where would they play him. Is Ancelotti going to sell 2/3 players to accommodate his new boys, or is it the case of past seasons where it's all buy buy buy and then players complain about not being in the starting lineup.
If that's the case (again) it will be his downfall eventually. I don't think Chelsea will win anything this season (Community Shield doesn't count in my books) Okay, i want this to happen. Alex to dress up as Goku, and Rafa as fat Majin Buu, just like the characters from Dragonball Z go to Wembley and just fight it out. Who do you think would win?
Right, back to football.........Sir Alex has told Rafa that his team have no chance winning the title from them this season.
Ferguson said Ancelotti's Chelsea is his main worry for this season.
Fergie said: "It will be hard for them to match last season, let alone improve on it. Other teams will know more about them."
Liverpool came a close second to United last season, but Ferguson wasn't stressed.
He went on to say: "Liverpool had probably their best season for 20 years and still finished four points adrift.
"It has to be Chelsea as the main threat. Ancelotti will change how they play.
"They will play the Milan way. It brought him two European Cups - it should have been three, because they should never have lost to Liverpool. So why should he change?"
He added: "The thrust of their team is all about Gerrard and Torres."
Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal and Man City had just better step back and watch Man Utd do it again. Remember in the early 90's when UTD were winning everything, it was either Fergie or Wenger lifting trophies, well it's that time again, only Arsenal won't be anywhere near a trophy this season again.
Although i don't really like Ferguson, i have to applaud him in what he's done at Man Utd over the last 20 years.
All hail Alex the Great! AC Milan have proven that they're not playing around when it comes to Pirlo. Milan owner Silvio Berlusconi has told Chelsea that the star midfielder will finish his career at the San Siro. Although Pirlo, 30, is only under contract until 2012, so i really don't think he'll be finishing Milan, but anyway.....
Owner Berlusconi had talks with manager Leonardo and VP Galliani to decide on Pirlo's future.
He said: "Andrea Pirlo has been taken off the market. He will stay with us and finish his career at Milan.
"You know that Andrea Pirlo was wanted by Chelsea with a suitable economic offer.
"We also talked with the player and we decided to accept Leonardo's request to keep Pirlo."
Even with Pirlo staying Milan will not win the Serie A title this year. Ronaldinho, Pato, Pirlo, Gattuso and co will not be good enough to lift the Seriea title next may.
Critics have stated their confusion and disappointment at the Kop boss for not finding a quick replacement for Robbie Keane, who Rafa sent him back to White Hart Lane in January. But they almost have Aquilani's signature to add to the strikers list.
But Voronin, who was on loan last season with Hertha Berlin, showed he can be the top gun with the opener on half time.
It doesn't matter whether Rafa plays 1 striker or plays four strikers goal-hanging, his problem is the defence. Hypia has gone, Carragher is iffy. It's like Milan, they're concentrating on attack but where's the defence?
I was told as a boy from my gym teacher....."always play with a defensive mentality, you'll always get at least 1 point." Liverpool are on the verge of signing Roma's Alberto Aquilani after the Italian side accepted an offer of 20 million pounds.
Rafa the Gaffa has wasted no time in securing this deal after Xabi Alonso is finalizing his 30 million pound transfer to Real Madrid.
A statement on Liverpool's website read: "Liverpool FC today confirmed they have agreed a deal with AS Roma for the transfer of Italian international Alberto Aquilani, subject to a medical. "Liverpool concluded their discussions with Roma once the sale of Xabi Alonso to Real Madrid was finally agreed."
Aquilani, 25, is expected to be one of the main men for Italy in next year's World Cup in south Africa.
Boss Benitez said: "Alberto is a very good player and I'm delighted we've reached agreement with Roma for his transfer. He will travel to Merseyside later this week for a medical. Alberto has a winning mentality and great experience in both Serie A and the Champions League.
"He has long been recognised as a top class talent in Italy, captaining his country at both Under-19 and Under-21 levels before establishing himself in the senior national side."
It is amazing how Liverpool can be in so much debt, just like Arsenal and Manchester United, but yet tend to spend more than the other two clubs. How is this possible?
Plans for a new stadium were scrapped, debts were rising so much that one co-owner had to sell his hockey team, but yet Rafa goes on a spending spree again.
I can see why some Chairmen of football clubs want control in the transfer part of their clubs footballing life.