Monday, January 4, 2010

Starting Eleven Football Blog Roundup

I'm really becoming a Gabriele Marcotti fan. He writes for the Times of London and most of the time makes me think outside the box about football. His latest column "Overspending belongs in same bracket as drugs and diving" is another of his pieces that makes you go hmm.

He's proposing that football clubs spending outside their means is akin to cheating, either via steroids or Ronaldo-esque diving. He wants us all to take another look at the accepted practice of buying players with money that clubs don't have -- good players -- and questions why that isn't the same as Thierry Henry's double-dribble against Ireland.

He's given it a buzzword--financial doping. And that's likely to give some steam to this movement that overspending is not just irresponsible, it's cheating. I've always been a staunch supporter of clubs running their business as they see fit. And if that means running it into the ground, so be it.

But I think I'm slowly changing tack on this. Not sure. Sport is big business, but yet it isn't. It's confined within a larger entity [clubs within leagues] and there's an overarching presence that supposed to govern the whole enterprise. Short of a salary cap, how are we going to prevent this oligarchy of clubs winning every piece of silverware they choose, while the majority of the remaining lot is a pathetic collection of wanna-bes and never-will-bes.

Just wanted to give you something to chew on as we peruse the football blogosphere this week [and rather than go to the flavor of the day, I'm starting with some friends and personal favs]:

  • EPL Talk is loaded this week with some Leeds United talk, a peek at Liverpool's third kit and FA Cup talk. But the best of the bunch might be a rant on ESPN's score ticker during Premier League broadcasts. I'd be happy if ESPN shut off it's damned autoplay function on online videos.
  • MLS Rumors is always fun, and today you can find out which MLS teams are playing in some Disney tournament and just where oh where is Freddy Adu headed now. Jeez, isn't he about at retirement age yet?
  • Oh You Beauty has a thorough review of Liverpool's 1-1 FA Cup draw with Reading, as well as some midseason stats for you numbers folks.
  • The Arseblog covers the Gunners' FA Cup win this weekend. Too bad he didn't see the game; click through to find out why.
  • John Terry, according to, wants to win the FA Cup again. How lovely.
  • TotalBarca has a guest post on Pep Guardiola and 12 reasons why he's so awesome [knee pads not included]
  • More on Pep: Is he a fluke? That's being asked. No. Really. It is being asked.
  • If it's the Silly Season, then the for sale sign is up at Sporting Lisbon. Miguel Veloso to Barca? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

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