The Weekly Dump – February 16th

S.I. Bodypainted WAGS

Soccer WAGs in bodypaint – The Sports Illustrated Swimsuit has an iconic reputation even if it’s lost some of it’s gleam with the every day stylings of PG-13 mags like Maxim, FHM, etc but it’s worth a look. Even more so now that they’ve thrown in four of the finest WAGs covered in nothing but bodypaint. Go ahead and check them out, I’ll be here when you return.

“I was just trying to help the payroll!” – Seems ManU supporter Adam Teese has fine aim from the stands as he winged Manchester City striker Craig Bellamy with a coin from the stands. Teese was arrested and continued the streak of nasty business during the derby.

When all else fails, blame the press – First Chelsea go out and smoke Arsenal on the pitch then Wenger took a few shots at the boys in Blue with “They make the foul at the right time when they are caught on the counter-attack, the little push with the shirt. It is not enough to get a yellow card.” Michael Ballack took exception and gave a little back to the Arsenal manager. In the end, Wenger just blames it all on the press.

“You did that at Villa, you did that at Chelsea,” Wenger continued. “If you look at the intent of my press conference it was positive to the opponent. If you want, we can have a press conference and I can say nothing, don’t worry.”

Bad break for the EPL leaders – Chelsea followed up their big win over Chelsea by letting Everton pick up 3 points later in the week. The biggest hit to the table leaders is the loss of Ashley Cole with a broken ankle. He’ll likely be out for 3 months and will make it more interesting to see if Wayne Bridge gets a call to the national team. Though Ancelotti does hope Cole will be ready. Incidentally, Cole’s injury was sustained in a clash with Mr. Landycakes.

Broken ankle not Cole’s only problem – Ashley Cole’s broken ankle will now give him plenty of time to deal with the problem of watching his wife split for the States without the jewels of matrimony. What the hell is in the water at Stamford Bridge?

Footballers find something to be shy about – It’s not uncommon to see/hear some nasty things around various soccer venues especially in the deep heart of the continent. There are still some crazy stories about racial abuse even in these “enlightened” times. Even with these random problems they seem to be making some progress. Racial issues are easy compared to someone asking top footballers to help stamp out homophobia. Big strong men afraid of catching a little grief from opposing supporters.

“Everybody assumes footballers are full of confidence, but it is not easy on issues like this. Remember there was a time when even black players did not feel they could talk about race.”

Welcome to 2010 gentlemen.

The Weekly Dump – February 8th

John Terry - Father of the Year

John Terry – Father of the Year

I’ve spent a few of these weekly link dumps to have a little fun at the expense of the Scousers and Gooners and anyone else worthy of a pop, so I suppose I should be an equal opportunity jerk and take a shot at my boy John Terry. Chelsea stalwart, former English captain, and all around fine fellow. Until.

Terry sets precedent – Rumors had been widely circulated that Chelsea tough guy John Terry had been spending some quality horizontal time with the lady friend of former mate Wayne Bridge. The British court system was heavily weighted against the press up until last week when they were given permission to document the details. Now it is the biggest sporting sex scandal since Tiger Woods showed up at a random Hooters.

Terry sacked as English captain – No real surprise here as the entire nation was calling for his head. Just to keep things interesting with actual football, Fabio Capello named Rio Ferdinand as the replacement.

Naturally the Archbishop of Canterbury had his say“Clearly, a lot of people think there isn’t a problem there and that’s a pity because adultery is adultery. It’s a shame that we lost that sense that faithfulness matters. I’d like to see it back.”

John Terry named Father of the Year – That’s right, after spending an entire week splashed across every rag in the nation for schtupping a former friends chippy (at least her, probably more) someone had to bring up his Father of the Year award.

Terry leads Chelsea over Arsenal – Like any hard headed footballer, he then went out to anchor the Blues in a solid display to crush the final hopes The Gooners had of winning the league this year. Even after Samir Nasri claimed they would not be intimidated by Chelsea. All’s well that ends well.

“Physical strength is very important, but if we are able to compensate for this deficiency through our technique, like Barcelona, I can’t see where the problem is. Look at Xavi and Andres Iniesta, they are not physical monsters.”

Liverpool looking to for £100 million by the summer – Never a dull moment around Liverpool even after squeaking by Everton this weekend. The owners are now looking for a £100 million cash injection or they might sell the club. Liverpool supporters may have a tough decision whether to hope for the cash or pray the American owners crawl back to the states. They are also looking for investors to help with the process of building a new stadium so they can move out of Anfield.

The Weekly Dump – January 25th

Larne captain Liam Hogan meets Darren King

God bless the Irish – Once I read Unprofessional Foul there was no doubt what would lead the link dump. Irish sides Newry City and Larne met up in something called the Irish Cup which I assume is their version of the FA Cup. Here’s what I can tell from searching the news sites. Things were going along fine until the 80th minute when Larne captain Liam Hogan committed felonious assault on Darren King (pictured above). After that all damned hell broke loose. Punches, kicks and everyone sent home.  My favorite group of pictures were presented by the BBC, insanity.

Editorial comment: Soccer players fight like little school girls.

Should have paid the electric instead – Real Madrid were paid €2,000,000 for a trip to Albania (Elbonia?) to play a friendly against Gramozi, a newly promoted side who borrowed players from other teams for a little boost. Then the stadium lights went out. Things were thrown, curses cursed, and somebody got sacked. Eventually Real Madrid won the match and got the hell out of Dodge.

Captain Raul was the only Real player to stay for the presentation of a cup, before leaving in a hurry surrounded by bodyguards.

Personalized stab-proof vests in time for the World Cup – This summer’s World Cup will see ~500,000 fans heads to South Africa where they are averaging 50 murders per day and more than 50% of them via knife/shank/sharpened nail clipper (reference TSA procedures). Now local crime lords promise to boost up the mayhem quotient. It makes perfect sense a company would now offer stab-proof vests for those making the trip and kind enough to give supporters the chance to order a vest with their national flag.  World Cup officials are pissed at everyone.  Customized personal protection equipment will be all the rage. (h/t Wicked Chops Poker)

Nine men, No problem – The top fixture in Serie A was the derby between AC Milan and Inter who were 7 points clear before the match. Inter scored their first goal early and then played much of the match with 10 men when Wesley Sneijder was sent off in the 27th minute. An injury time dismissal was enough to grab the 9-man headline then Secreteriat-like Ronaldinho has a penalty attempt rejected. I do think the reporter by have blown the size of this match out of proportion.

During a build-up which had involved more tactics than any game of football, Sneijder and Alessandro Nesta were both set to miss an eagerly-anticipated Milan derby.

Stoke City gun down the Gooners – Winner for worst EPL headline. Stoke City took points from Liverpool last week and this time around they knock Arsenal from the FA Cup. Wenger fielded a fairly weak side after the mid-week clash with Bolton but he’ll have some questions to answer. Who’s left in the FA Cup besides Chelsea and Coca Cola pretenders? Manchester United and Arsenal are now tied atop the leaderboard with the mighty Chelsea (KTBFFH) but they have two games in hand on ManU and one on the Arse.

Becks gets groped – I have no idea how to explain the video below. I cannot speak a lick of Italian but I believe the lass spends a few minutes talking about David Beckham’s junk and then goes on a sneak attack. You have to struggle through the first few minutes of yapping and close ups on his manhood but the two minute mark gets entertaining.

My Sturridge Don’t Cost A Thing…Or 7M

soccerati-daniel-sturridge

So, looks like Daniel Sturridge may cost Chelsea a pretty British Pound. The Professional Football Compensation Committee ruled that the east Londoners owe Manchester City 3.5M for the July 2009 transfer and that number could balloon up to 7M if Sturridge reaches certain milestones.

Apparently, the two sides failed to reach an amount on an initial fee, and, as a result of Sturridge’s age, City is now due compensation.

That makes sense…

Wha? Gerrard Spotted Tracking Back and Defending?

Jail 'im

Not so says the Southport, Merseyside prosecutor, noting that the closed circuit television feed shows Steven Gerrard as the aggressor, beating his victim with uppercuts and handspeed like a professional boxer. 

My favorite quote: “On this occasion, Steven Gerrard’s fists, not his feet, did the talking.  This was never self-defence in 100 years.”   Also not accused of defence in Merseyside: Alvaro Arbeloa, Fabio Aurelio.

Setanta Loses EPL Rights

I know I’m pretty new to this whole soccer thing, but I’m pretty sure the above is a big deal. So much for my switching cable/satellite providers to get Setanta. And does this have anything to do with Fox Sports here in the US?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/8109954.stm

Apparently the “better” English Premier League provider welched on £30 million owed to the league — and though for a while it looked like an American investor might bail them out (interesting), but in the end that deal fell through.

More from the BBC’s football blogger on where Setanta went wrong here.

Bet on Relegation

It’s getting near that fun relegation time in the EPL season … one of the things that, frankly, got me hooked on soccer. Though I know it will be a while before MLS and USL are ready for that element, can you imagine how exciting baseball would become — major and minor league — if they had relegation?

Here’s a good article on wagering the end of the season for the bottom of the table.