State of Play: Ireland 3 Wales 0

wales PERHAPS the merits of the Nation’s Cup will truly be seen when the next round of fixtures takes place in May, with a genuine competitive edge. The case for abandoning football altogether was made in the first half of last night’s clash with Wales, but Ireland emerged rejuvenated after the break and posted a decisive victory. Continue reading →

On The Road To God Knows Where – Manchester

manchester stripper crop “AND where are ye guys off to this weekend?” asks the blondey haired D4 bird sitting next to Philly on the plane. “Ah well, we’re off to this titty bar called Leggs” replies Philly, not a bother on him. He wasn’t even saying it for anyone else’s benefit. He was just genuinely delighted to be going back to the strip club he’d been in the last time he was in Manchester. And for ten pound lap dances can ya blame him for being excited? Continue reading →

Spud Watch – Stop The Press

trap press conf I had written a critique of Giovanni Trapattoni’s original squad selection yesterday for next week’s clash with Wales. However, earlier today I was handed a revised squad update here at Spud Watch Towers and I’ll be f*cked if you think I’m gonna go back and re-edit all the nonsense and garble. But what has been handed to me is is the most exciting looking Irish squad in 5 years…. Continue reading →

Spud Watch – The Irish Abroad 04/02/11

duff celebration crop HELLO friends and welcome to Spud Watch – lots to talk about this week but also the usual dose of nonsensical boll*cks, plus an in-depth analysis of Trap’s squad (in Spud Watch – Stop The Press) which chopped and changed more times than the original Pippa in Home and Away. (Incidentally, the original Pippa is a better midfield option than Paul Green or Glenn Whelan). Continue reading →

Chelsea Want McCarthy, But Trap Doesn’t

McCarthy v Chelsea CHELSEA are reported to have made a shock £6m bid for Irish midfielder James McCarthy ahead of tomorrow’s transfer deadline. Yet while the 20-year-old, who made a scoring return to action last week after a lengthy lay-off, has emerged as a target for the Stamford Bridge outfit, he will seek a meeting with the Irish management on his omission from the senior squad. Continue reading →

In Arsene We Trust?

arsenal SO HERE we are again, the Christmas programme is over, the effects of the food and drink excesses still apparent (as the five-aside fitness levels have shown), and we’ve a new calendar year with the top of the Premier League table looking remarkably like the sports section of a 1998 newspaper (aside from the fact Man City found their level in Division 3 back then). The title run-in is upon us as I’ve no doubt we’ll be reminded from the gadget-happy Richard ‘hairy hands syndrome’ Keys and Andy Gray (if they are allowed back, that is). So how well placed are the ‘Gooners’ to end the trophy drought that we’re so reminded about? Those TV cameras really do like spanning around the Emirates for the gap years post 2005! Continue reading →

Royal Revival – How King Kenny Can Turn Things Around

Kenny Dalglish SO KENNY Dalglish is in the hot-seat at Anfield but, as the start he’s made has shown, the appointment of the club’s messiah to the top job hasn’t yielded instant results. Anyone who’s watched Liverpool regularly this campaign will tell you that not even the mystical powers of King Kenny are enough on their own to turn this wretched season around. So what does Kenny have to do in order to bring some respectability back to Anfield and ensure that he’s in with a fighting chance of nabbing the job long-term when decisions are made in the summer? Continue reading →

Ranty Cause: Keane to Prove His Net Worth

robbie keane nets HE’S THE love-hate figure of the Irish national team. We love him because he’s our captain, our record goal-scorer, a genuinely decent skin, and hope that we can all pull a smoking-hot bird. But we hate him for his histrionics on the football pitch, his flailing arms, his sometimes glaring misses, and the fact that he hasn’t turned into the consistent sharp-shooter he promised in his youth. Continue reading →

Ronaldinho Seeks Rio Redemption

rio flamengo PORTO Alegre is known as “Cidade Sorriso” or Smile City. It’s appropriate then, that it should export the most famous buck-toothed grin in world football. An odyssey that traversed three of Europe’s most renowned cities came full circle this week whenRonaldo de Assis Moreira returned to his homeland, though this time to the sprawling mass of Rio de Janeiro and the fanatical following of Flamengo. Continue reading →

On The Road To God Knows Where – Paris

paris tunnel WE’LL always have Paris ….It’s the beginning of a new year and it’s a massive one for Giovanni Trapattoni and Ireland. Euro qualification lies in the balance. This time 12 months ago, the pain of Paris was all too palatable. We’d do well to remember it as we now look to get over the finish line. Póg Mo Goal returns to that fateful night and journeys with the fans. Those with a weak disposition, look away now. Continue reading →

Spud Watch – The Irish Abroad 07.01.11

seamus-coleman v spurs SPUD Watch becomes a normal job again as I actually have players to report on. I felt like Lieutenant Huxley in Demolition Man there for a while, wandering around yearning for things to happen – usually in the Npower Championship but in the end I’d end up on Chat Roulette crying at a group of black people wearing Yankee jerseys in America laughing at my naked body. Continue reading →

Red Man Walking: Who’ll be next in the Anfield Hot Seat?

Roy-Hodgson-Liverpool WITH Wednesday night’s feeble defeat to Blackburn representing a new low in Roy Hodgson’s brief period in charge at Liverpool , the feeling is that NESV have lost faith in the 63 year old and are actively seeking a replacement. Based on what the New England owners have done with the Boston Red Sox, failure isn’t tolerated for long. We look at the potential candidates to replace Roy and assess each of their chances of actually pitching up at Anfield. Continue reading →

Spud Watch – The Irish Abroad 14.12.10

Stephen-Hunt-Stephen-Carr-007 I FEEL sad my friends. I feel very sad. I can’t shake this melancholy. Another pitiful weekend for our lads over in foreign. There is going to be a serious amount of Irish players moving in the January transfer window, the type of movement not seen since the time I licked a raw chicken fillet when I was 5 years old. Continue reading →

The Bacon Slicer: The Things I Love About Football

zidane 1 TONIGHT Matthew I am going to be writing about football. Chances are that if you are one of the five people who will read this piece (and yes I am bitter considering I am spending my Friday night writing this when I could be drinking tea and swooning over the Take That lads on The Late Late with Kilkenny hurler Brian Hogan-look-a-like Ryan Tubridy), then you love football too. My own girlfriend won’t even read it – subtle way of slipping in that I have a girlfriend! Continue reading →

Joxer Goes to Doha; World Cup Heads to the Middle East.

blatter qatar QATAR is the Athlone of the world. To the east; the bustling mass of the Asian economies (aka Dublin); to the west, the mix of cultures, tradition, and trendiness of Europe (Galway). Yet just as the ramshackle St. Mel’s Park football grounds was replaced with the Athlone Town stadium, the Arab state boasts a growing network of state-of-the art sports facilities and, after today’s announcement in Zurich, the world is invited to play ball here in 2022. Continue reading →

Spud Watch – The Irish Abroad 23.11.10

Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Fulham v Manchester City - Craven Cottage JOE Hart wasn’t injured after all and Shay Given returned to the bad place he’s been in now for months, despite Wednesday’s brief international respite; like a prisoner being let out for Christmas dinner. Damien Duff is, in my opinion, also about to enter a bad place. He looked out of sorts again against City – getting subbed for Gera and may now be in danger of losing his place for their next outing. What are we without a Duff firing on all cylinders? It’s like The Beatles without John and Paul, Ant and Dec without Dec, porn without the cum-shot, Play The Game without Derek Davis – It doesn’t bare thinking about. Continue reading →