Always some interesting pieces from Rory Smith. Though I’ve mostly only read those on ESPN FC.
Quite simply, yes. Sergio Busquets is the best midfielder in the world right now. If you go through your checklist of big teams and the midfielders in those sides you can’t find anybody capable of doing what Busquets does. There are the nimble attacking midfielders, the box-to-box types and the destroyers but Busquets is just pure class. He does things so simply yet so brilliantly. Elsewhere, I feel the comments on Javier Mascherano are a bit harsh. He’s in the destroyer category but has improved his passing range and vision. He’s just a different type of player from Busquets and not the “clearly inferior” player the author states he is.
Really great piece here. Pretty sure this question will be asked for some time yet.
I think a good number of football fans were shocked at the transfer activity involving Chinese clubs during the transfer window. Here are a few articles on the situation. It’ll be hard to convince many, myself included for now, that it’s not just about the money for the players. These were some major statements from Chinese clubs and, as a result, Chinese football. We shall see where it leads.
Talk about going all out to get your man. It feels sneaky just reading it but it doesn’t seem like there’s much wrongdoing. They just figured they’d get close to Pep Guardiola’s brother/agent first.
Good place to start if you’re looking for a place with a good breakdown of names and their alleged indiscretions. Can’t believe I’ve met two of these people.
Pretty much spot on. There have been some successes though. Marco Verratti’s doing pretty well at PSG and there was a certain Gianfranco Zola who did quite well at Chelsea. I struggle to think past these two examples but I’m sure there are more. Still. It’s not enough to go against the premise of the piece. Serie A, especially now, doesn’t have many top-notch exports.
Not the way you want to increase the profile of the women’s game. Although, I guess all press is good press. This mistake is definitely not a good look.
Nods head. Yup. No way to say it better. People just love to talk before they think on the internet. Managing a small club versus a big one is just as hard and completely different. The expectations on Pep Guardiola are also heightened because of backing he has/had at Bayern Munich and will have at Manchester City. Looking forward to all the comments next season if they don’t come of the blocks firing. Or vice-versa.
The days of the never-say-die type of captain is definitely coming to a close. That’s been Arsenal’s biggest problem in the last few years. No real leaders. Alexis Sanchez is about as close as it comes to a fighter. It’s understandable that as football has progressed the type of leaders, especially in the Premier League, has as well.