Podcast: Episode 10 – Elko comes to London

The False Nine podcast is back, with new regular guest Elko Born joining Greg Johnson, James Dutton and Francis to talk England, Wayne Rooney, Netherlands after van Gaal and the transfer window.

As you may be able to tell from the “atmosphere” during the recording, the pod took place at The Candid Cafe in Angel. Be sure to swing by for some cake and a coffee next time you’re in the area.

Listen on iTunes.

Why Danny Welbeck holds the key for England at the World Cup

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Pete Sharland reveals how he has been won over by Danny Welbeck, and believes he can play a big part in England’s World Cup summer…

Right, let’s get one thing clear from the outset; my dislike for Danny Welbeck and Tom Cleverley had nothing to do with the fact that they play for Manchester United. The reason was that I couldn’t fathom why either were such key parts of a club like United and of the England team. Both had fairly decent loans at Sunderland and Wigan respectively but neither deserved to be where they were.

This season though that’s changed. Well Cleverley hasn’t, he’s horribly out of his depth but that doesn’t excuse some half-wits creating a horrible petition to get him out of the England team. The man who has won me over however is Danny Welbeck, and it is quite hard to pinpoint why. Perhaps it is his cheeky grin when he scores, although you can be certain it isn’t his infuriating dance. Continue reading

Why Mata’s United arrival spells the end for Wayne Rooney

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With Juan Mata’s arrival imminent, Jon Wilmore speculates on Wayne Rooney’s future at Old Trafford…

It’s happening – it’s actually happening. But when the initial ecstasy over Juan Mata’s arrival at Manchester United dies down, Moyes and the boys are going to face another question entirely – where on earth do they actually play him?

The question has been raised throughout the media, with nobody quite certain enough to reach a general consensus. United have recent experience of purchasing a star player from a rival whose position was ostensibly not their weakest – a purchase that basically won them the league.

After reluctantly relinquishing the role of star centre forward to Robin van Persie last year, Wayne Rooney has seemed a man renewed in the Dutchman’s absence, thriving up top and again as a number 10 in behind Danny Welbeck. But now, it must happen again. Continue reading

Match Journal Entry #1: Brazil vs. England

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In a new series for Summer 2013, The False Nine team will provide talking points from the matches they’ve watched. First up, John Guillem on England’s visit to Brazil…

-          Prescript: since the game, I have suffered nightmares for the past pair of nights. Murdered ‘Arry in one of them ONLY TO TRANSFORM INTO HIM [!] That one was bad. Chased down the road by Woy with a butterfly night in another. The implications of these are yet to be fully determined. Watching England is bloody miserable, harrowing, traumatic (even if you don’t care) perhaps to a degree which extends beyond the conventional contemporary psychopathology of numbness and alienation…can I get my (figurative) money back?

-          Obvious but still merits statement: England had an extremely depleted squad, and the players who were available dictated our strategy and performance for this game. It’s heartening to see that we can still be hard to break down (though Brazil do suck) with such a weak squad.

-          This was the perfect game for Joe ‘world class’ Hart. Lots of shots to stop but we were playing a side lacking clinicality and aerial/indirect set piece threats of any note. Continue reading

Rooney to Arsenal: Why Wenger has to have United’s Street Fighter

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In the wake of Arsene Wenger admitting his interest in Wayne Rooney, The False Nine debutant Jon Wilmore believes Arsenal should do all they can to sign the self-styled ‘last of the street footballers’…

Transitional period. It’s a phrase thrown around a lot in football and for Arsenal would aptly describe nearly a decade of league disappointments. But for themselves as well as their rivals, next season is a unique proposition. It is a transitional period for the entire Premier League.

With Sir Alex Ferguson gone, Manchester United face a challenge without any modern precedent in sustaining the momentum he did his best to leave them with. Their City rivals enter yet another managerial era with their new boss facing an immediate challenge in winning over the fans so faithful to his predecessor. Chelsea welcome Jose Mourinho back with open arms, a reunion which could yet go sour as they remember all the reasons for their uneasy severance last time around. Pipped to the fourth place post at the death yet again, Spurs brace themselves for an onslaught of interest in Gareth Bale and the question of what on earth they’d do without him.

Arsenal enter the summer window in a position unique amongst their fellow elite. They are in a phase of relative stability. Continue reading

ITV Preview Real Madrid v Borussia Dortmund

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Greg Johnson and James Dutton imagine the scenes in the ITV studios as they discover Borussia Dortmund during tomorrow night’s Champions League semi final second leg against Real Madrid…

Adrian Chiles: “Vorsprung durch football! And welcome to ITV for Real Madrid versus Borussia Dortmund, in what promises to be a night to remember with one of the all-time classic match ups of the Champions League.

“After last week’s heroics, it looks like the Germans will be invading London in May, but will they be saving their Blitzkreig for Wembley? As always I’m joined by Roy Keane, Lee Dixon and Gareth Southgate, and I think it’s fair to say gang, that this wasn’t the situation we were expecting, or prepared for…” Continue reading

The Clash of the Titans – Real Madrid v Manchester United

 

Freddie Mickshik previews the Champions League clash with a sub-plot down every avenue…

A decade on from Ronaldo’s hat-trick at Old Trafford, in one of the greatest ties the Champions League has witnessed, his Portuguese namesake returns to the club that made him great for a fixture that has mouths watering across Europe. Continue reading