• Tottenham Require A Veteran Winner To Get Over The Hump

    When Edgar Davids joined Tottenham Hotspur in the summer of 2005, the Dutchman addressed concerns about his 32-year-old legs in impressive fashion. "It doesn't matter if you are 30 or 40 or 19 or 17 - if you can play the ball, you can play the ball,” he said. ...

    Read full article

  • Are Liverpool Holding Back The Career Of Nigerian Striker Taiwo Awoniyi?

    When Taiwo Awoniyi made the move to Liverpool in 2015, he arrived as something of a rare commodity: then 18, the striker’s signing came out of the blue, with few supporters aware of his abilities. The Reds paid Nigeria’s Imperial Soccer Academy £400,000 to secure his services, as well as compensating Swedish Allsvenskan club Kalmar FF to nullify their pre-contract agreement with the youngster, ensuring he followed Joe Gomez, James Milner, Danny Ings, Adam Bogdan, Roberto Firmino, Nathaniel Clyne and Christian Benteke through the Shankly Gates to round off a busy summer transfer window for Brendan Rodgers. But two years and two loan spells later, and Awoniyi is yet to even step foot on Liverpool’s training field at Melwood—let alone turn out for his parent club—with work-permit issues threatening to damage the career of a bright young talent. ...

    Read full article

  • The Next Five Years Will Reveal Chelsea’s Attitude To Youth

    The pathways between Chelsea’s youth and first teams are famously cluttered and rarely does a week pass without that being a topic of a scathing thinkpiece. That isssue manifests itself in all sorts of ways, from the plain denial of talent to the hand-wringing over John Terry’s release; if the club aren’t able to promote from within, how will they properly replace the values that he has represented? ...

    Read full article

  • Dani Alves Would Represent A Coup For Manchester City

    Ahead of this year’s Champions League final, Dani Alves participated in a feature for The Players' Tribune - the sports website established by former New York Yankee Derek Jeter which publishes articles written exclusively by professional athletes - and regaled the story of his career to date. The least surprising passage of the piece involved his thoughts on Pep Guardiola, whom he worked alongside at Barcelona. ...

    Read full article

  • The Off-Season: We All Need This

    I always feel a slight twinge at the end of the season. The imminent disorder and disruption to a seasonal rhythm and comfort zone. But it is really just that: a twinge, no rolling over and no agony. We need the post season break. We, being all constituent parts of the footballing polity. ...

    Read full article

  • Youth In The Premier League

    In the 2016/17 season, the Premier League saw 16-year-old Angel Gomes play two minutes for Manchester United and 41-year-old Shay Given notch up 450 minutes for Stoke City, before the Potters realised that maybe signing Lee Grant was a better idea. Gomes was the only player born in 2000 to appear, while Given appeared in this world, presumably already with enormous hands and tendency to misjudge crosses, in 1976. ...

    Read full article

  • By The Numbers: Youth In The Premier League

    The 2016/17 Premier League season was the first to see a player born this century to make an appearance; 16 year old Angel Gomes for Manchester United. On the other end of the spectrum, 41 year old Shay Given was the oldest player to make an appearance. Here we crunch the numbers to see the broader picture. ...

    Read full article

  • Arsene Wenger Needs Executive Assistance At Arsenal

    When Ivan Gazidis promised Arsenal fans that the disappointment of the 2016-17 season would act as a catalyst for change, cynical eyebrows were raised. The Chief Executive has a long track record of talking a great game, without necessarily putting into action all the things he says. For example, back in 2013 he spoke of how new commercial and sponsorship deals would help Arsenal become more competitive. ...

    Read full article

  • Everton Are Equipping Themselves For A Climb

    This Everton are interesting. In the past, there's always been a reason not to buy into the prospect of progress at Goodison Park. Whenever the embers of mobility began to glow, a bucket of water was never too far away. Sometimes that caveat was financial, sometimes managerial or, more often, it came from the knowledge that the very best players weren't guaranteed to stay. ...

    Read full article

  • Dominic Solanke’s Vitesse Loan: Humble Beginnings That Could Aid Liverpool

    At the beginning of the 2015/16 campaign, a 17-year-old Dominic Solanke followed the likes of Nemanja Matic, Patrick van Aanholt, Gael Kakuta, Christian Atsu, Lucas Piazon, Bertrand Traore and Josh McEachran to become the 15th player to join Eredivisie side Vitesse Arnhem on loan from Chelsea in six years. Two years on, and the England U20s striker is preparing to join Liverpool on a permanent basis, having signed a long-term deal with the Reds on the expiry of his contract at Stamford Bridge. A compensation fee is to be determined by tribunal, with Solanke expected to be valued at anywhere between £3 million and £10 million, and it could prove that the youngster’s time at the GelreDome ensures Liverpool secure one of the bargains of the summer. ...

    Read full article