The History of Indian Football

Indian national team’s meager international ranking does not quite reflect the sport’s popularity in the country. The game of Football is extensively played and viewed here. European club-level football matches, as well as the international matches are a big hit among the younger generation in India. The football scenario is vastly different at the Indian national and domestic level though, where only a handful of old faithful can be seen in the empty stands. Also due to the lack of quality television coverage, even interested football lovers tend to give the national and domestic club league matches a skip. The quality of football being played in the country is another important reason for this lack of viewership; which, in turn, also results in ill-fed sponsorship for the game in this country. Off-late I do see a slight change of attitude towards Indian football from a fan’s perspective. Even the corporate houses have left aside their step motherly treatment of the […]

From the Dial Square to The Arsenal, we have traversed through countless ‘seasons’ of footballing prominence achieved with great players, magnanimous managers, unforgettable memories, incredible rivalries and all the Arsenal fans, whom we amorously call ‘The Gooners’. If we dive deep into the incredible pages of Arsenal history, we can be proud to be a part of that supreme ‘Institution of Arsenal Football’.  We hold the record for the longest uninterrupted period in English top flight and that must be some achievement considering the number of years we have spent in the top flight since 1904, nine years before we moved to our cherished home ground, The Highbury.  In this time span, we have collected 13 Top flight league titles, 10 FA Cups and 2 European Honors along with a massive reverence from about 27 million fans as it stands today. We have had our troughs with dry runs during different periods of our illustrious history, most memorable being the […]

Match Preview: The Bernabeu Welcomes Sevilla

REAL MADRID V SEVILLA FC Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid Sevilla FC will visit the Santiago Bernabeu this weekend with the hope of doing a double over Real Madrid. The next few days will define Madrid’s season and come next weekend the world will know whether the team has what it takes to showcase itself as a genuine force to be reckoned with, both in La Liga and in the Champion’s League. With a win in this fixture, not only can the Los Merengues go top of the league if Barcelona manages to lose away at Almeria, but also take revenge for the loss they suffered at the start of the season in Seville. SEVILLA FC Current Position: 4th, 43 points Current Form: DDWWLL The team has been extremely unpredictable in this calendar year. While they suffered back to back loses against Atletico and Barcalona and later to Zaragoza, they have had inspirational wins away at Mallorca and against Valencia. Sevilla has […]

Match Preview: The Viola Aim To Silence The Old Lady

ACF FIORENTINA V JUVENTUS FC Stadio Artemio Franchi, Florence, Italy March 6, 2010 It’s a rivalry which began in 1982 when the Scudetto went down to the final week of the season. Juventus were awarded a penalty to hand them the win they required, while a Fiorentina goal was disallowed in a goalless draw. It was enough to make the Fiorentina supporters irate – “Meglio secondi che ladri,” they said. “Better to be second than to be thieves”. This one-side rivalry took an even uglier turn when eight years later Fiorentina’s Roberto Baggio was sold to the Turin giants. It is considered to be one of the fiercest games for the fans in Florence. However in Turin, they say its nothing when compared to their battles against Torino, Milan or Internazionale. So it’s all about honour and pride for Fiorentina when Juventus visit Florence this weekend. Both these clubs have been considered among the stronger clubs in Serie A. However, […]

Match Preview: Roma Hope To Keep Title Ambitions Alive

AS ROMA v AC MILAN Stadio Olimpico,Rome March 6, 2010 Claudio Ranieri’s A.S Roma entertain Leonardo’s AC Milan in a top of the table Serie A clash. Ranieri’s men, who are currently placed third in the league and three points adrift of the Rossonerri would be hoping to draw level on points with Milan. The game also sees the return of Alessandro Mancini to Rome but this time in Milan colors instead of Roma – a club which the Brazilian represented for five years. Fatigue of players will play a crucial factor for both the managers in determining their starting eleven. Seven Roma and eight Milan players were called up for international duty. AS ROMA Current position: 3rd, 51 points Current Form: DWWWW The Giallorossi who are enjoying a stunning sixteen game unbeaten run in the Serie A are definitely the favourites going into this weekend’s match. Their chances have been given a further boost with news of the availability […]

Match Preview: Wenger’s Men Ready to Burn ’em Down

ARSENAL v BURNLEY The Emirates Stadium, London A total of thirty five points separate title aspirants Arsenal and the team lying one place off the bottom, Burnley. Wenger’s men will consider this a home banker but Burnley have enough in their locker to demoralise the hosts’ title challenge. Burnley Current Position: 19th, 23 points Current Form: LLWLLL Burnley are yet to score three points on the road this season. In fact, they have picked up only one draw all season in their away matches. Their last game was a defeat to bottom side Portsmouth and Arsenal away is not a fixture they would have wanted to get back on track in the league. The Clarets will have a lot of hope on their experienced midfielder Graham Alexander, who is back from an injury. Arsenal Current Position: 2nd, 58 points Current Form: DLLWWW The best way to get off the distraction of Ramsey’s injury is to get onto their home turf […]

Match Preview: United Look To Go Top

WOLVERHAMPTON WANDERERS V MANCHESTER UNITED Molineux, England March 6, 2010 Back in the 50’s, a game between Wolves and United was considered one of the biggest games of the season. Cullis was the man-in-charge of Wolves, leading them to three league titles while Sir Matt Busby was in control of the Red Devils during those days. Sir Matt once said, ‘Wolves in those days stood for everything that was good about British football. They played with great power, spirit and style.’ The rivalry has subsided to a great extent with the contrasting fortunes of the two clubs over the years and in the recent past Wolves have always gone into the game as underdogs. WOLVERHAMPTON WANDERERS Current Position: 17th, 24 points Current Form: LLWLLD The team is currently one place off the bottom due to its superior goal difference to Hull City. With only eleven games to go, the club is a guaranteed participant in the relegation battle come the […]

Ancelotti’s Departure: A New Beginning or The End?

Another season without a trophy puts Milan’s status as the world’s most successful club in Europe in question. The 2008-2009 season marked the beginning of the end of Milan’s ‘glory days’. With all due respect to Carlo Ancelotti, his foresight and tactics were getting a little too hard to understand. When you have young players like Gourcuff, Cardacio and Viudez waiting on the bench, why would you want to see the old legs struggling on the field? All his favouritism did was dent the confidence of these youngsters. Apart from the way he used to treat them, the substitutions that he made during the matches were atrocious. Milan’s backline was a joke without Alessandro Nesta. Paolo Maldini at his age was not enough and at times was found in need of support, but still Ancelotti chose to play Favalli over someone as talented as Matteo Darmian. He would have flourished under the watchful eyes of ‘Il Capitano’, but it was […]

Sympathy for the Devil

Please allow me to introduce myself, I am a man of wealth and ‘taste’…. I think this is a really tough time for Ryan Shawcross and his family. After the horror tackle on Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsey, the lanky English defender has gone into deep mental trauma. We, as passionate football lovers, need to stand by him and his family and if possible, his pet kitten, whose legs are paralyzed due to similar harrowing experiences endured by its master. We, at Arsenal, deeply regret the excessive revulsion shown towards the Englishman, a true son of his mother-land. We take back all the harsh words thrown at Ryan – we understand that those were uncalled for. We would like to embrace the effervescent Stoke defender and share his ‘grief’. His depression, our despair! On the eve of 27th Feb, 2010 at The Britannia Stadium, in a moment of ‘inadvertent madness’, our ‘faithful’ son of England decided to split apart one of Aaron […]

FIFA World CUP 2010 Fever – World Over

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