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  1. Five divisions of 20 – Football League restructure proposal resurfaces

    The Football League has released proposals that could see the domestic professional league system re-organised into five divisions of 20 teams from the start of the 2019-20 season.

    As if to prove there’s nothing new in the game, the same proposal was put forward back in the sixties and, half a century later, could the 100-club structure suffer the same fate?

    The 21st century version carries the title of a ‘Whole Game Solution’.

    It was in 1959 that Football League secretary Alan Hardaker compiled a plan called the ‘Pattern for Football’.

    Although the author was a renowned dour Yorkshireman, it was described as the most remarkable document any League official had ever formulated.

    He foresaw three national divisions ...

    Updated 20th May 2016 at 07:46 PM by Veritas

    Categories
    History , Football Governance , Competitions , Football League
  2. Can Romania do a Greece at the Euro 2016?

    We are a matter of weeks away from this summer’s festival of football in France. Squads are being finalised, sweepstakes are being organised at work, and wallcharts are being downloaded to be blue-tacked to walls and displayed on tablets.

    As well as your own team’s chances of progressing, it is also a good time to look out for other teams who may do well and surprise a few people in June - and even in July. Everyone remembers what Greece did back in 2004, so are there any candidates in this year’s tournament who could repeat that feat?

    They may not be an obvious choice, but Romania certainly seem to tick most of the boxes. If you are looking for an outside bet or just an underdog to watch and root for, they could do a lot worse than backing Anghel Iord?nescu’s ...

    Updated 16th May 2016 at 08:29 AM by 11v11

    Categories
    Betting , European Championship , Competitions
  3. Gareth Barry tops the starters menu

    The sacking of Roberto Martinez brings a disappointing season towards an ignominious close at Everton but, amid the doom and gloom, there is a reason for a cheer around the Goodison Park ranks.

    Although the Toffees’ final away game of the 2015-16 campaign at Sunderland did mean they had won only one of their last ten league games, it was a notable occasion for veteran midfielder Gareth Barry as he became a new record breaker.

    It was the 35 year-old’s 572nd start in his Premier League career, so beating the competition record held by ex-England keeper David James.

    Almost 18 years ago to the day, the former Manchester City man made his first full appearance in the Premier League as a centre-back for Aston Villa against Arsenal at Villa Park on ...
  4. The first 21st century player

    The 2015-16 Football League season came to a close on Sunday (8 May 2016), and those of us whose youth is but a distant memory have been made to feel just a little bit older.

    Midfielder Callum Styles was selected on Bury's subs bench for the first time in their League One game against Southend United at the JD Stadium.

    He substituted Anthony Dudley in the 75th minute to become the first player born in the 21st century to appear in England's top four divisions.

    Callum's Shakers youth team colleague Rob Harker, who was also born in March 2000, was selected on Bury's bench for the League One game against Bradford City on 5 March 2016 but did not come on.

    Bury ended the campaign on a high note with a 3-2 win against Southend featuring ...
  5. Nine yellow cards for Tottenham Hotspur against Chelsea

    Amid the euphoria of Leicester City’s magnificent and historical title success (needless to say, our heartiest congratulations to all concerned), new Premier League ground was also broken elsewhere on Monday night.

    In the title crunch game at Chelsea, nine yellow cards were shown to Tottenham Hotspur players; the first time in the competition’s history that nine different players from one team had been shown yellow.

    Considering the importance of the game, Cup Final referee Mark Clattenburg appeared to be in an especially lenient mood during the early stages of the exchanges.

    Despite an increasingly highly charged atmosphere, only Kyle Walker, Jan Vertonghen and Danny Rose (that’s three of the back four) had gone into the book in the first-half. ...
  6. Can history predict the winner of the 2016 European Championship?

    Football fans are in for a thrilling and exciting summer. Domestic league and cup competitions in all major European footballing countries will soon be over, as will the Champions League and Europa League. However, 2016 is a Euro year and this year, for the first time, the European Championship will feature 24 teams. Not only will we enjoy live football action over the summer, with 70 matches to be played throughout France in June and July, but also, for betting pundits it is a great chance to place a couple of bets. If you feel that June is too far away, you might want to place a wager on something else in the meantime.

    A lot has changed
    The European Championship, organised by UEFA, will be hosted in France for the third time ever. No other nation has hosted the European ...

    Updated 20th April 2016 at 09:20 PM by 11v11

    Categories
    Betting , European Championship , Competitions
  7. Wilshere provides timely reminder to Hodgson with return to action

    Having suffered a broken fibula during pre-season, Jack Wilshere would have been delighted that his original diagnosis only ruled him out for a matter of months. However, as we find ourselves nearing the end of the season, the Arsenal midfielder has yet to play a single minute of first team football this year.

    After almost nine months out with the injury, Wilshere is stepping up preparations for a return to first team duties with run outs for the Arsenal under 21 side. With England boss Roy Hodgson failing to rule out a place in his squad for Wilshere for the upcoming European Championships, the midfielder must now impress in the remainder of the campaign to be sure of his place.

    Wilshere was undoubtedly one of his country’s strongest performers, with two goals ...
  8. This Season’s Premier League Shocks So Far

    Despite being the most-watched football league in the world (and the self-proclaimed most exciting), there hasn’t been a lot of parity in the Premier League since its formation in 1992.

    However, the tide seems to be shifting as no longer is simply splashing the most cash for superstars enough to win a title. While it’s too early to tell if this year is an anomaly or not, what is certain is that this season has had more shocks and surprises than any other in recent memory (particularly for punters) With the season coming to an end soon, we all know that there will be even more shocks! A lot of football betting will be going down in the last few weeks. If you want to join in and find out more on how to get started, check out this guide to mobile sports betting from OnlineCasino.co.uk. ...

    Updated 4th April 2016 at 03:07 PM by Veritas

    Categories
    Betting , Competitions , Premier League
  9. Can anyone stop Leicester City winning the Premier League?

    Leicester City appear destined for one of the greatest upsets in football history in winning the Premier League. Yet, five points adrift Tottenham Hotspur still dream of glory and even Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger refuses to give up hope whilst there is still a mathematical possibility of a fourth Premier League title. So what does historical precedent tell us about each side's claim on the Premier League history?

    In the table below we look at the margin of difference between the team in first place in the Premier League and those in second and third place, where the leader ended up, who became champion and how many points they achieved.

    ...
  10. Nike launch of multiple similar national team kits ends in fiasco

    Nike's kit launches for the England and US national teams were met with scorn from fans and media on Thursday, whilst panic-stricken executives cancelled the launch of the Brazil shirt in Rio due to unwarranted concerns over demonstrations.

    The company, known only as "Sportswear Company A" in US indictments relating to football-related corruption, decided to launch its new England, France, USA and Brazil on the same day - perhaps hoping fans wouldn't notice how similar they are.

    The England design comprises white shirt and shorts with blue trim, grey-blue sleeves and shoulders, and red socks. The red away kit carries the same design but with blue socks, and dark red sleeves and shoulders.

    According to the FA, the red away shirt commemorates the 50th anniversary ...

    Updated 18th March 2016 at 03:28 PM by 11v11

    Categories
    Competitions , England , Football business , USMNT , National Teams
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