Monday, 31 July 2017

FOOTBALL LEAGUE 2017/18 PREVIEW


In what's known as the toughest league of the world to get out of, the Championship this season is looking like a real battle, to just survive never mind winning it.

Here's my preview on what will once again be a bumpy ride of a season, The 46 game slog-fest starts on Friday night when Nottingham Forest face Millwall & Derby travel to newly relegated Sunderland. So who will live up to the pre season hype? Who will flatter to deceive? And who will be the shock team of the season?

Middlesbrough have spent big, splashing out £9m on Martin Braithwaite from Toulose & Britt Assombalonga £15m from Forest. Gary Monk is in as new manager,  surprising he left Leeds, but it's a unstable situation there. At The Riverside Boro' look the best bet to go straight back up at the first time of asking.

Sunderland who also went down look like there in a bit of a mess and things could get even worse. There better players have all jumped ship. The big earners who have done nothing (Rodwell comes to mind) they can't shift, With off the field matters growing over The Stadium of Light and a disgruntle fan base, the Black Cats could well bomb through the Championship if there not too careful. The Chairman also wants too sell up. Hull City have brought in no one of great importance player wise for me. They have got in a new Russian face in Leonid Slutsky as manager.

Also in with a chance this season, Derby they should do better this year with Gary Rowett. They have re-signed Tom Huddlestone which is good, but have lost Tom Ince and Will Hughes though. Fulham who just missed out in the play-offs I expect to be up there again. Also for me the likes of Norwich City should challenge a lot stronger this season.

The surprise pack of the season could be Wolverhampton Wanderers.This summer they have landed Ruben Neves from FC Porto for a whopping £15 million, Diogo Jota from Atletico Madrid on loan and John Ruddy on a free. A new manager in the hot seat too, as Nuno Santo takes over at a very exciting time at Wolves. Elsewhere in the Midlands exciting times at St Andrews to. Harry Redknapp after keeping Birmingham in the Championship (just about) decided that he's back and ready for full time employment. He was up to his usual tricks being linked with Ashley Cole, Stewart Downing and Robbie Keane this summer. Classic Redknapp that, Birmingham fans it will not be boring. Staying in the Midlands and over to the biggest club there Aston Villa. All eyes were on them this summer as they brought in Mr Popular John Terry. Pressure will be on Steve Bruce to finish a lot higher then 13th. He is banking on experience bringing in Chris Samba (remember him) Glenn Whelan and Ahmed Elmonhamady. Scott Hogan and Jonathan Kodija up top, Grealish should have a bigger role to play this year too. Aston Villa are looking in very good shape.

Again there's a strong Yorkshire contingent in the Championship this year, for me Sheffield Wednesday should do the best.

Down in London I mentioned Fulham already, as for QPR there looking in solid danger this season. Rangers only just about survived last term and that was because the teams behind them just ran out of games to catch them. Only one new face through the door so far, Josh Scowen from Barnsley. In a team that struggled so badly last season they struggled to score and let them in at the back for fun. So the team needed investment, help and new faces. However QPR are not spending like they once did. The feel good factor could wear off with Holloway very quick if QPR have a bad start. Millwall up form League 1 will be near the bottom half for most of the season but I don't think they will go down. Brentford much like Fulham easy on the eye and play good football. They should finish around mid table once again.

Its easy to say the promoted clubs will struggle but Sheffield United and Bolton should have just about enough to survive. The likes of Ipswich Town and Barnsley could struggle this season, and get caught in a bit of a mess this season due to just a lack of investment. You have seen the amount of cash some clubs are spending even if the Championship its big numbers. Reading were punching above their weight last season, this year I can't see them as high. So for me I will go for:
Championship
Winners - Aston Villa
Promoted - Wolverhampton Wanderers, Middlesbrough
Relegation - Burton, Ipswich, Barnsley (I can't write QPR)

League One
Winners Wigan
Promotion Portsmouth, Bradford
Relegation - Blackpool, Walsall, Gillingham, Plymouth

League Two
Winners - Coventry
Promotion  -Luton, Swindon, Wycombe
Relegation -  Morecambe and Newport

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Transfer Tuesday Part 4

What's the latest? Here we go....

Neymar on his way to PSG? a deal that is just mega money as PSG look to trigger his release clause. But is he really going off to Paris? He wants a Ballon D'or its a Brazil thing. You can't win it when your not the best player at in your team so maybe. However FIFA don't give the award for PSG players. We shall wait and see on that one.

Virgil Van Dijk is on 'Van Strike' as he has been training on his own and wants out. What does training on his own mean? Kicking a ball against at wall at Southampton's training ground? No players talking to him?

Naby Keita looks like he will be staying at RB Leipzig as Liverpool have had 3 bids rejected. He did nearly cripple a team mate in training this week.

West Ham finally landed some players, the signing of Javier Hernandez 'Chicharito' is a good bit of business a proven scorer and for so cheap in today's market.

Over at Man City Pep got rid of all his full backs this summer, this week Benjamin Mendy and Danilo rolled in to go along with Walker.

Sanchez is back in London now so his transfer saga should come to an end soon. I can still see him leaving no matter what Wenger says.

West Brom are in search of a centre back after making a bid for Ben Gibson at Middlesbrough and keeping an eye out on Chris Smalling who will fall down the pecking order at United next season.

By @Sean_Footymad

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Transfer Tuesday - Part 3

Here's the latest from the past week.

Kyle Walker is now the most expensive defender in football as he sets off to Man City. Now to me Spurs always make good business for the books. Berbatov, Modric, Bale etc Levy is no fool. But if Tottenham really want to challenge again making themselves weaker & City stronger may not be the best way of going about things.

'Sanchez Saga Latest': He's making comments about playing 'Champions League' football, he may have to force a move out the club himself if he really wants to go. Bayern have said their no interested.

At West Ham it looks like Joe Hart will be their marquee signing after passing his medical. For me he is done and West Ham may come to regret this move. 

Chelsea's hunt for a new forward may bring the to the door of Sergio Aguero. You would think no way City would sell to a rival and a player who has done so much for them. It would be really REALLY annoying if they land him.

Man United making progress with Perisic but the Morata deal soon changed so they could quite easily swoop for someone else if the deal drags.

In the Championship, Birmingham City have been 'Redknapped', as he has been linked to Robbie Keane, Ashley Cole and Stewart Downing. Boro have splashed out £15m on Assombalonga

In Italy all things are a go at AC Milan. They have been on a summer recruitment drive bringing in some quality players, Bonucci, Andre Silva, Calhanglu & Ricardo Rodriquez to name but a few.

Follow for more transfer news through the summer.
@Sean_Footymad 

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Transfer Tuesday

The biggest deal of the week has come as a bit of a shock as Man United ended there interest in Morata and focused their attention to Lukaku who they have landed, from under the nose of Chelsea. So United have replaced the goals they have lost in Zlatan in a big way. Stormzy will be happy.

Chelsea could now turn to Morata or Llorente who are now looking a little light up top. Costa looks like he has defiantly played his last game at Chelsea. Tiemoue Bakayoko, should be through the door next week to go with Antonio Rudiger who they signed from Roma, in what has to be the worst 'new player social media video' ever.

Rooney has returned home to Everton with his PJs and all. He will have a massive point to prove to all his doubters.

Liverpool and Tottenham have been kind of quiet, they don't want to get left behind with so many getting stronger. 

Elsewhere some other notable news, West Ham this week were linked to Javier Hernandez and Marko Arnautovic. Some other signings worth a mention Will Hughes to Watford, he's finally got out of Derby. Along with Tom Ince to Huddersfield who have gone about their business nicely with 8 new faces so far.

Harry Maguire from Hull to Leicester City is also a good bit of business.

@Sean_Footymad 

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Transfer Tuesday


A new feature this summer looking at some of the latest transfer gossip and deals with my take on them.

Alexandre Lacazette to Arsenal looks likely, some big clubs have been sniffing around him for a few summers. Now he's fallen behind Olivier Giroud in the French pecking order, so a bit of a down grade. Probably means Sanchez gone then too?

Sanchez to Bayern Munich? Arsenal have said they won't let him go to another English club...yeah OK 'R.V.P' Man City he could easily end up there. City also have the most expensive deal for a English club so far, bringing in Bernardo Silva from Monaco. Pep you may want to buy some defenders though now.

Everton have done a bunch of business, there going to get the cash back with the sale of Romelu Lukaku which looks like a return to Chelsea. Sandro Ramirez looks good, Michael Keane & Jordan Pickford is a nice little English pairing. Imagine if they had the England Captain on loan hey?

Man United apart from Victor Lindelof it's all gone quiet over there. Alvero Morata apparently cut his honeymoon short to finalise the deal, but that went down well with the new Mrs.

Tammy Abraham has gone to Swansea on a season long loan. He said the night life in Newcastle is too dangerous for a man his age. Tammy must have Geordie Shore on series link.

John Terry has gone Aston Villa, he will be given a kind welcome at all Championship grounds around England.


West Ham linked to everyone under the sun.

By @Sean_Footymad