Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Monday, December 20, 2010

Minus 11 in Liverpool...let's be careful out there

UK is in the grip of a ridulous freeze at the moment. Never seen it quite thid cold before

Sunday, December 05, 2010

-2, freezing fog, black ice. Lets be careful out there

Liverpool has survived the huge amounts of snow dumped on most of the UK but is now suffering a real sting in the tail. What little snow we had has turned to black ice and freezing fog is sitting atop us. The roads and pavements are like a skating rink.

The Swan, Led Zeppelin playing, real ale flowing, populated almost entirely by drunk santas

One of the real ale pubs in Liverpool with the best rock/metal jukebox. Love, love, love this pib to bits

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Goodbye old friend

Taking my little 52 plate Ford Fiesta LX to the dealers today...quite sad if I'm honest. Ace car that. Over 100,000 miles we did together.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Red sky at morning

Red sky at morning shepherd's warning. -2 in Liverpool

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Freedom is merely privilege extended Unless enjoyed by one and all

Do love this : The Billy Bragg version of The Internationale

Stand up, all victims of oppression
For the tyrants fear your might
Don't cling so hard to your possessions
For you have nothing, if you have no rights
Let racist ignorance be ended
For respect makes the empires fall
Freedom is merely privilege extended
Unless enjoyed by one and all

Chorus:
So come brothers and sisters
For the struggle carries on
The Internationale
Unites the world in song
So comrades come rally
For this is the time and place
The international ideal
Unites the human race

Let no one build walls to divide us
Walls of hatred nor walls of stone
Come greet the dawn and stand beside us
We'll live together or we'll die alone
In our world poisoned by exploitation
Those who have taken, now they must give
And end the vanity of nations
We've but one Earth on which to live

And so begins the final drama
In the streets and in the fields
We stand unbowed before their armour
We defy their guns and shields
When we fight, provoked by their aggression
Let us be inspired by like and love
For though they offer us concessions
Change will not come from above

Monday, October 18, 2010

Get in!!!!!!!!!! Everton 2 - 0 liverpool

There are few things better than a derbt victory but genuinely any other result would have been a travesty. It's fair to say there is a lot of problems at that club and while the new ownership will mean they'll rise quickly I doubt I'll ever see a poorer liverpool side.

Everton were great...they weren't going to slip up again (remember last season playing them off the park yet getting beat 2-0). Jags & Distin were superb, Coleman and Osman were both superb Cahill, Arteta and Neville really imposed himself but The Yak was immense...it was a team win but for a player who is under pressure and lacking in his goal touch he just chased everything and battered the liverpool defense into submission.

Superb win but ultimately you've got to say Everton should be beating teams like that.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Mattie Burrows scores a wondergoal for Glentoran

Wow, in the 92nd minute to win the game Mattie Burrows does this




to win the game for Glentoran of Belfast

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Rock Bottom


Really not enjoying Everton being bottom of the league. Not good at all....so many games we've had opportunities to establish a comfortable lead and let the chances slip. I don't think we are playing badly, it's just we simply can't score goals.

Yakubu can't seem to buy a goal, Beckford doesn't seem to be getting a chance Gueye has disappointed in the Carling Cup games and Anichebe and Saha are injured.

So annoying when you look at the quality of the squad we have overall.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A Catholic replies

As a Catholic I know full well that the church is a long way from being perfect...the abuse scandals and they way they weren't dealt with immediately are as heart-breaking as they are unforgivable. This piece isn't an apologist rant saying they've all got it in for us...it isn't evangelising and holding Catholicism up above all others it is just a plea for people to call a spade a spade and instead of taking immense glee in screaming about paedos and smugly, superciliously writing off believers as deluded just take things on their merits.

The Holy Father visits the UK for only the second time in 400 years, Catholics in this country have been patiently paying taxes for years but from the reaction of some you'd think Kim Jong Il was being invited to take over the country and bankrupt the treasury with his oppulent demands whilst doing it.

It is a state visit by the spritual leader of a large percentage of the British population. Would people expect Nicola Sarkozy to pay for his own visit? No, that's not how it's done. Would their be outrage if the Dalai Lama was assigned some police resources for his security detail? Hardly. Why are the Catholics any different.

It just seems that instead of taking issue with the wrongs perpetrated by the church and bringing them to fore thus engaging with the problem (I admire the dignity and intelligence of peopl like Colm O'Gorman, a man who suffered terrible abuse but is strong enough to campaign against the wrongs in a measured, dignified, intelligent and effective way) people just want to tear the whole thing to shreds tarring everyone with that same brush...where does that leave ordinary rank and file Catholics. There is nowhere for us to go, it is just not as simple as "pick a side"....also where does that leave the thousands who have dedicated their entire lives to charitable works through the Catholic church? Priests and nuns who serve God and his people without ever straying from their devotion and duties yet are treated as somehow complicit or guilty by association.

The debate has to be subtler, less black and white than this surely. Given that those most opposed to the Church and this state visit are the supposed intelligentsia surely this isn't too much to ask. Do these people abuse every squaddie they see because of Abu Graib? Of course not.

It is almost compulsory to "forget" about the millions of millions of man hours of charitable work the Church does....or the millions of pounds it raises for various aid programs it pumps into needy places via things like CAFOD.

Nowhere is this better exemplified by the villification of Pope's comments about condoms in Africa. He simply said that condoms alone are not the answer to stopping the spread of AIDS.

The reaction from people was simply ludicrous. People pretending to be outraged purely as an excuse to insult The Pope. Bear in mind that Catholics make up a small percentage of the African population, also bear in mind that as well as "don't use condoms" the Church also preaches abstinance and fidelity as central to it's design for life. Why then is it just assumed that the condoms message is taken to heart by the entire population of Africa whilst the rest of the message is just ignored.

And why is it assumed that a continent with so many problems in feeding it's people has limitless reserves of condoms readily available in every village?

Given that we know that this isn't the case surely education, what the Pope advocated, is much more important.

I am not saying that condoms are evil...but that's not what the Pope said either....certain people just chose to hear that for an excuse to hurl some mud and say some rude words.

As I said earlier, am not saying everything under the Vatican flag is perfect and whiter than white...but give us a fair crack of the whip, engage rather than hurling abuse scattergun fashion...then againwe'll probably just turn the other cheek

Cool timelapse video


Just seen this superb video of timelapse photography

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Game by Harold Brighouse (Northern Broadsides @ The Plahouse, Liverpool)

Went to see the play The Game last night, written by Brighouse in 1914 and put on by the wonderful folks at Northern Broadsides. Characters writ large with some superbly fun roles...I always enjoy plays set in that era.

 

After the recent Carling Cup debacle you’d think I’d be put off football but was extremely anxious to follow the fortunes of Blackton Rovers, stripped of star striker Jack Metherall.

 

Well worth a look. It’s fair to say have never had a bad night at The Playhouse or The Everyman.

 

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Fake Togo team play friendly against Bahrain

What a great scam, better they pocketed tonnes in expenses :

Togo's football authorities are investigating allegations that a fake national team played a match against Bahrain earlier this month.

Bahrain won the friendly match 3-0, but said they were surprised by the poor quality of the Togolese team.

Togo later said it had never sent its national team to play in the game, staged at the national stadium in Riffa on 7 September.

Togo's sports minister said he would ask Fifa to investigate.

But Fifa says it has not yet received any official complaint and so has not launched its own investigation.

The match took place as Bahrain prepares to play in the West Asian Football Championships, which begin on 24 September.

The Bahrain Football Association (BFA) said it had been arranged under all the usual official procedures, and through an agent they had known for several years.

Togo's Sport Minister Christophe Tchao told the Jeune Afrique magazine nobody in Togo had "ever been informed of such a game".

"We will conduct investigations to uncover all those involved in this case," he said.

Bahrain's head coach, Josef Hickersberger, told the Gulf Daily News the match had been a wasted opportunity for the team to practise before the West Asian championships.

"They were not fit enough to play 90 minutes - the match was very boring," he said.

"Basically it was not good for us because we wanted to get information about the strength of our team, especially playing with many of our professionals."

Monday, September 13, 2010

A Catholic replies

As a Catholic I know full well that the Church is a long way from being perfect...the abuse scandals and they way they weren't dealt with immediately are as heart-breaking as they are unforgivable. This piece isn't an apologist rant saying they've all got it in for us...it isn't evangelising and holding Catholicism up above all others it is just a plea for people to call a spade a spade and instead of taking immense glee in screaming about paedos and smugly, superciliously writing off believers as deluded just take things on their merits.

The Holy Father visits the UK for only the second time in 400 years, Catholics in this country have been patiently paying taxes for years but from the reaction of some you'd think Kim Jong Il was being invited to take over the country and bankrupt the treasury with his oppulent demands whilst doing it.

It is a state visit by the spritual leader of a large percentage of the British population. Would people expect Nicola Sarkozy to pay for his own visit? No, that's not how it's done. Would their be outrage if the Dalai Lama was assigned some police resources for his security detail? Hardly. Why are the Catholics any different.

It just seems that instead of taking issue with the wrongs perpetrated by the church and bringing them to fore thus engaging with the problem (I admire the dignity and intelligence of peopl like Colm O'Gorman, a man who suffered terrible abuse but is strong enough to campaign against the wrongs in a measured, dignified, intelligent and effective way) people just want to tear the whole thing to shreds tarring everyone with that same brush...where does that leave ordinary rank and file Catholics. There is nowhere for us to go, it is just not as simple as "pick a side"....also where does that leave the thousands who have dedicated their entire lives to charitable works through the Catholic church? Priests and nuns who serve God and his people without ever straying from their devotion and duties yet are treated as somehow complicit or guilty by association.

The debate has to be subtler, less black and white than this surely. Given that those most opposed to the Church and this state visit are the supposed intelligentsia surely this isn't too much to ask. Do these people abuse every squaddie they see because of Abu Graib? Of course not.

It is almost compulsory to "forget" about the millions of millions of man hours of charitable work the Church does....or the millions of pounds it raises for various aid programs it pumps into needy places via things like CAFOD.

Nowhere is this better exemplified by the villification of Pope's comments about condoms in Africa. He simply said that condoms alone are not the answer to stopping the spread of AIDS.

The reaction from people was simply ludicrous. People pretending to be outraged purely as an excuse to insult The Pope. Bear in mind that Catholics make up a small percentage of the African population, also bear in mind that as well as "don't use condoms" the Church also preaches abstinance and fidelity as central to it's design for life. Why then is it just assumed that the condoms message is taken to heart by the entire population of Africa whilst the rest of the message is just ignored.

And why is it assumed that a continent with so many problems in feeding it's people has limitless reserves of condoms readily available in every village?

Given that we know that this isn't the case surely education, Ie what the Pope advocated, is much more important. When resources are finite then just taking a truckload of contraceptives and distributing them is fine for a time, what happens when they run out? Another truck? and another? and another? I am not saying that condoms are evil...but that's not what the Pope said either....certain people just chose to hear that for an excuse to hurl some mud and say some rude words.

As I said earlier, am not saying everything under the Vatican flag is perfect and whiter than white...but give us a fair crack of the whip, engage rather than hurling abuse scattergun fashion...not too much to ask when you consider that it is, basically just one of the biggest charitable organisations on the planet.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Everton 5 - 1 Huddersfield

Pretty good all things told, We were in The Paddock it is was trickier for us to tell how the team were doing as a whole but it looked like the sort of calm, professional performance you don’t always see from the blues.

 

Just got the ball and kept hold of it. Huddersfield had a little spell just before the break but other than that Everton cruised it with most of their big names on the bench. Great to see.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Start as you mean to go on. Everton v Wolves

Argh, what an annoying start to the season for Everton. Wolves kicked , elbows, barged, backed into and fouled everything that moved in the midfield but ultimately we ony have ourselves to blame for being on one point instead of four.

So annoying when you look at the quality of the players Everton can field at the moment.

Hope we'll click soon but with Villa and Utd coming up we've left ourselves trying to salvage a dodgy start instead of looking to build on a positive one.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

So this is what they've been using for the Wembley pitch

Surely, given the state of the numerous relaid pitches, this is one of the worst bits of footy marketing products ever

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Quote on Cameron

Brilliant quote from an article in The Guardian that needs preserving and repeating :

"I don't have a phobia about Tories. That would suggest an irrational response. I hate them for a reason. For lots of reasons, actually. For the miners, apartheid, Bobby Sands, Greenham Common, selling council houses, Section 28, lining the pockets of the rich and hammering the poor – to name but a few. I hate them because they hate people I care about. As a young man Cameron looked out on the social carnage of pit closures and mass unemployment, looked at Margaret Thatcher's government and thought, these are my people. When all the debating is done, that is really all I need to know."

The Wanky Balls festival



Love this. An old vandalised version of the Wikipedia page for the Big Chill Festival reads like this :

Founded in 1994 by Pete Lawrence and Katrina Larkin[1]. The Wanky Balls festival began as a series of ambient parties at the Union Chapel in Islington, but developed into an outdoor festival in 1995 with an event in the Black Mountains of Wales.[2] In the early days the most prominent DJs were Matt Black of Coldcut, Tom Middleton of Global Communication and Mixmaster Morris also known as the Irresistible Force.

And ends up in Saturday's Independant

Monday, August 09, 2010

Look at the stars...

After last week's disappointing lack of Northern Lights we now have the Perseids to look forward to :

August 12 and 13, 2010 Perseids

And when we say August 12 or 13, we mean the morning hours after midnight … not that night. These typically fast and bright meteors radiate from a point in the constellation Perseus the Hero. But you don’t need to know Perseus to watch the shower. The meteors appear in all parts of the sky. The Perseids are considered by many people to be the year’s best shower, and often peak at 50 or more meteors per hour. 2010 is a great year for the Perseids. This year, the slender waxing crescent moon will set at early evening, leaving a dark sky for this year’s Perseid show. The Perseids tend to strengthen in number as late night deepens into midnight, and typically produce the most meteors in the wee hours before dawn. These meteors are often bright and frequently leave persistent trains. On the mornings of August 12 and 13, watch the Perseid meteors streak across this short summer night from midnight until dawn. Lie back and watch meteors until dawn’s light washes the stars and planets from the sky. The morning of August 11 should be good, too – in fact, this shower tends to rise gradually to a peak for about a week. Then it’s known to drop off rapidly after the peak mornings.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Progress Report : Horse chestnut (grown from a conker)

This one will need planting in a park in about 12 months. It'd be fantastic to see a tree grow from something I picked up and pushed into the soil.

Progress report : My oak trees (grown from acorns)

So far so good for little oak trees I've grown from random conkers I picked up here and there.

Follow, follow, follow...

Follow, follow, follow...Everton is the team to follow and there's nobody better than Mikel Arteta. He's the best little Spaniard we know.

So chuffed to hear Mikel has signed a new contract with us. Apart from the fact he's one of the best players i've ever seen it says lots about the attitude and atmosphere at Everton right now.

Texts and Facebook/Twitter messages were flying round yesterday as the news broke. Everyone was ecstatic.

Great quotes too :


Arteta said he has come to realise "how important I am to the club and how important the club is to me".

Toffees chairman Bill Kenwright has described Arteta as "one of the finest players ever to wear an Everton shirt" and Artena said the support of the Everton hierarchy had been a big factor in his decision to sign a new contract.

"The chairman and the manager wanted me to stay 120% and that makes me feel proud," the midfielder, who has twice been Everton's player of the season, told the club's website.

"We are all seeing the club and the future in the same way and that is special - something that you don't always find.

"I believe in this squad. We have got a very strong squad now and it is getting difficult to pick an 11 because of the players we have.

"Something is happening here and I want to be a part of it."

Everton boss David Moyes described Arteta's decision as "great news".

"He is a very important player for us and we are delighted to secure him," added the Scot.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

How random

Random picture from Twitter :

Share photos on twitter with Twitpic

Great article by Polly Toynbee about Cameron's Big Society

Good to see something solid in black and white about the Tory revisionism

So is the big society a romantic Tory aspiration or cynical political sophistry? Follow the money and the story unfolds. Far from finding themselves cherished, charities are taking a hard hit from the first round of cuts. The new Office for Civil Society (OCS), replacing Labour's Office of the Third Sector, has cut £11m from existing organisations that encourage volunteering. The youth volunteering charity V lost a further £8m and probably 90 jobs with the abolition of its schools programme. Why cut experienced organisations and staff who know how to do the job?

Coalition rhetoric denounces Labour for its big state takeover of voluntarism: it's a straight lie. Blair and Brown channelled more money and effort than ever into the voluntary sector, which doubled in value on their watch. Was that due to a sudden spasm of generosity from the burgeoning wealthy? No. Stephen Bubb, head of the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations, points out that 70% of their extra funds came from the state.

Contrary to endless Tory jibes about Labour's "soviet tractor factory target", voluntarism is deep-dyed in Labour's roots.

For all the "broken Britain" breast–beating, we are already quite good at volunteering – 13.5 million people volunteer at least once a month, more than in most equivalent countries. But it doesn't come from nowhere: the £35bn voluntary sector is 40% sustained by state support – more than in most countries – so shrinking the state means shrinking the charitable sector, too. Evidence from this first small sample of ferocious cuts to come warns that charities will take the first and hardest hits.

Charities are an essential buffer between state and market and a beacon for innovation, but the idea that a sector that is just 2.3% of the workforce can replace the welfare state is not so much fanciful as downright dishonest. Whenever you hear talk of the big society, just follow the money.

Everton FC v CD Everton


The game against Everton Vina del Mar was a tremendous occasion. My only regret is that the Chileans didn't score because you could tell everyone was ready to erupt for the visitors.

It was great to see such an historic game. I love sporting trivia like the Everton Everton thing.

The club definitely need to do something regular with the Brotherhood Trophy now.

It is what being a footy fan is all about. The fact that people from Merchant Tailors in Crosby founded Barcelona and gave them their colours, similar with Notts County and Juventus. I also remember that the amateur team Corinthians gave their name to the Brazilian team.

Friday, August 06, 2010

David Cameron and The Salford Lads Club photo opportunity

Loved this about Cameron trying to act all trendy and cool (from the Guardian) :

David Cameron was in the north-west, visiting a youth project in Salford, Greater Manchester. On the face of it, the trip chimed with his passion for "social enterprise", but as Cameron well knew, his destination was a local holy-of-holies: Salford Lads Club, the local Victorian landmark where the Smiths were photographed in 1986 for the inside cover of their finest album, The Queen Is Dead. In PR terms, the visit was thus a "twofer": a chance for Cameron not only to push the new compassionate Toryism, but to once again yak on about one of his supposedly favourite rock groups and thus remind us that the Conservative party is now groovier than anyone could have imagined.

The plan was for him to have his photo taken in front of the building à la the Smiths, but the local Labour party got wind of the script, and dispatched a pack of activists to foil him. Their placards featured such slogans as "Salford Lads not Eton snobs" and "Oi Dave - Eton Toffs' club is 300 miles that way", and they would not be moved, so Cameron went home without his snap.

Just under a fortnight ago, Salford's MP, Hazel Blears, the doughty secretary of state for communities and local government, recounted the tale at Labour's spring conference. It was, she said, "a story from a great city". When her comrades had got wind of Cameron's plans, they had been "incensed" by the cheek of a Cameron visit to an area that had "80% youth unemployment when the Tories were in power". They had spent "all night" getting ready to protest.

"And on the day," she said, "Cameron was bundled in the back door, and bundled out of the back door. And he never got his photograph! And that night, I couldn't resist it: I sent him a photo of me outside Salford Lad's Club" - and here she laughed like a triumphal drain - "and I wrote, 'Dear Dave, Sorry you didn't get the picture, all the best from Salford.' And when I saw him at the next PMQs [Prime Minister's Questions], he said, 'Hazel - I will get my photograph.' And I said, 'Not on my watch, you won't, Dave.'"

Thursday, August 05, 2010

David Cameron's Eton Army Officer Cadet Anthem

As we all know by now Cameron is a bit of a halfwit but given that he used to take Eton Rifles as an anthem for the Eton College Officer Training Corps ("I was one, in the corps. It meant a lot, some of those early Jam albums we used to listen to") is pretty amazing.
Sup up your beer and collect your fags,
There's a row going on down near Slough,
get out your mat and pray to the West,
I'll get out mine and pray for myself.
Thought you were smart when you took them on,
But you didn't take a peep in their artillery room,
All that rugby puts hairs on your chest,
What chance have you got against a tie and a crest.
Hello-hurrah - what a nice day - for the Eton Rifles,
Hello-hurrah - I hope rain stops play - with the Eton Rifles.
Thought you were clever when you lift the fuse,
Tore down the house of commons in your brand new shoes,
Composed a revolutionary symphony,
Then went to bed with a charming young thing.
Hello-hurrah - cheers then mate - it's the Eton Rifles,
Hello-hurrah - an extremist scrape - with the Eton Rifles.
What a catalyst you turned out to be,
Loaded the guns then you run off home for your tea,
Left me standing - like a guilty schoolboy.
We came out of it naturally the worst,
Beaten and bloody and I was sick down my shirt,
We were no match for their untamed wit,
Though some of the lads said they'll be back next week.
Hello-hurrah - there's a price to pay - to the Eton Rifles,
Hello-hurrah - I'd prefer the plague - to the Eton Rifles.
Hello-hurrah - there's a price to pay - to the Eton Rifles,
Hello-hurrah - I'd prefer the plague - to the Eton Rifles.
As Paul Weller himself said "Which part of it didn't he get? It wasn't intended as a fucking jolly drinking song for the cadet corps."

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

It's a jungle out there apparently

Noticed this blog about one cyclist's battle with the arrogant and angry drivers out there :
Well worth a read (if only for the diligence shown with the accompanying Google Map)

Wonder if the people at Cannon Hygience took any action over their scumbag of a driver. I always regret not getting the licence plate of the Terravision airport coach that all but drove us off the road on Speke Boulevard a while back.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Everton Vs Everton

Looking forward to seeing Everton play CD Everton of Chile tomorrow

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Waterloo match report from 1993

Found this match report from ages ago :

THERE is a fine line in metaphors at Waterloo: the name itself conjures an appropriate vision whenever the club from leafy Liverpool 23 win a battle against one or other of their loftier brethren. And any side that has a wing named Austin Healey scoring their tries . . .

Whenever, not when. Waterloo's sudden success after years of decline and inertia is becoming habitual. Having knocked out Bath, holders and league champions, in the Pilkington Cup's third round, they have now done the same to Orrell - pipped by Bath only on points difference last April - in the fourth.

They built an 8-3 lead downwind and then defended it so heroically that Orrell could not add a single point. (Nor did Waterloo.) If they can beat Bath and Orrell, they feel they can beat anyone they may pull out in today's quarter-final draw at Twickenham. But, please Lord, let it be at home.

Because at home, actually Blundellsands rather than Waterloo, which is nearer the city centre, the leaders of the Second Division are taking on an air of invincibility. Naturally they are fallible and limited; otherwise they would be members of, rather than aspirants to, the First Division. But within their fallibilities and limitations, they have become inspired.

Something has happened here which shows that great clubs who go into decline do not have to remain so. If Northampton are England's most obvious example of recent years, Waterloo - striving to foster rugby in a footballing city and greatly assisted by the malaise of Everton and Liverpool - are making a fair stab at following the example. They had fallen far and fast, though it was a long time ago that Waterloo were in the final of what was quaintly called the RFU Club Competition (with the bit about John Player Cup always in brackets), losing in 1977 to Gosforth. Ten thousand turned up at Twickenham; now the figure is routinely six times as many.

Ten years on, Waterloo led the First Division for a while during the league's fragmented inaugural season and even won at Bath. But they finished only one place above relegation, went down in 1989 and were saved from further relegation in 1990 only by the good fortune that there was none while each division was increased from 12 to 13 clubs.

Lucky 'Loo. In 1990-91 they were ninth, last season third. Peter Buckton, the ball-playing Yorkshire flanker who had played for Orrell and Liverpool St Helens, became Waterloo's Blucher, riding to the rescue when he joined the club as coaching director. With the change in personnel came changes in style and fortune.

Buckton, 32, whose brother John has played centre for England, is employed by the Rugby Football Union as its youth development officer covering Liverpool and is based - where else? - at Waterloo FC. It is a two-way thing: the club dished out dozens of complimentary tickets for primary-school teachers, the very group Buckton is targeting, for Saturday's match.

What they saw was wonderful for Waterloo though, with its prime billing on Rugby Special, hardly wonderful for rugby because the standard was so poor. Orrell won more ball than they knew what to do with. 'It wasn't like us,' Buckton said.

'We normally control the line-outs in Second Division rugby and we're not used to playing without the ball for such large chunks of time. It's such a step up: you're always being tested and can't relax, whereas in the Second you can falter for 15 minutes and get away with it.' Which only goes to show how high the step up would be if Waterloo kept in front of Newcastle and Nottingham - though more fundamental even than promotion is the uncharacteristic freedom of expression given to, and demanded by, a back division with an average age of 22. This is certainly not the Waterloo we used to know and not love very much.

Waterloo used to bask in a fearsome reputation for aggressive forward play. 'Water-Shoe' was an unflattering nickname that covered a multitude of sins real and imagined. Jim Syddall, who briefly became an England lock a decade ago, was a figure of folklore and some clubs - one remembers a row with Coventry in particular - were reluctant to play them.

The 10-year, 250-match career of Nick Allott, lock and captain, has covered both eras and thank goodness he prefers the new smile to the old scowl. 'It's a change to see backs down at Waterloo,' he said. 'It was that change of attitude when Peter came in. We wanted to play a more expansive game. We started to look forward rather than always remembering the time when we had a pack who could chew up and spit out opposing forwards. That's gone.'

For some reason, Waterloo are reluctant to harp on about Buckton's club position - strange given the fuss they made when he was appointed. He is not the coach: that post is held by Mike Briars. But he is undoubtedly a coach and highly influential at that.

'Peter has domonstrated to us that there is another way of playing, but we aren't big on titles here,' Allott said - by which he meant Buckton's title, not the Second Division title. 'But that really is one of the differences from how it used to be: the lads are taking the responsibility on themselves.' You could hardly say the youthful Waterloo backs got going on Saturday, but they looked livelier and more penetrative than Orrell's and their crucial try was well taken.

When Austin Healey received the ball on the blind side after the half-backs had used scrummage ball to form a maul, he ran like a sprite, leaving Phil Halsall in his exhaust. Mr and Mrs Healey clearly had a sense of humour; they realised their son would be able to motor, rev up, accelerate, swerve, etc, etc on the rugby field as well as the open road.

Gerry Ainscough kicked a penalty for Orrell and Paul Grayson - already signed up by Northampton for next season - one for Waterloo, and that was that. Of tension there was plenty, of memorable rugby very little, which was especially frustrating for the 6ft 8in Bob Kimmins and the England scrum-half Dewi Morris. Kimmins ruled the line-out and Morris, who can motor a bit himself, would have ruled in broken play but for the dire quality of the delivery from his forwards.

So for Orrell it was yet another big game that got away and, all right, it has to be said: in the Lancashire derby at Blundellsands they really did meet their Waterloo.

Waterloo: Try Healey; Penalty Grayson. Orrell: Penalty Ainscough.

Waterloo: S Swindells; A Healey, M Craig, N Hill, G Fraser; P Grayson, C Saverimutto; M Beckett, P Hackett, S Peters, N Wilkinson, N Allott (capt), J Ashcroft, S Beeley, P Buckton.

Orrell: N Heslop; P Hamer, S Langford, G Ainscough, P Halsall; B Wellens (I Wynn, 62), D Morris; M Hynes, N Hitchen, D Southern (capt), R Kimmins, C Cusani, D Cleary, S Gallagher, N Ashurst.

Referee: E Morrison (Bristol).

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Best pub quiz team name ever?

Dan Gosling Depreciation Society

Usually we go under the moniker The Itchy Bees but today when we got to the The Victoria in woolton we were debating the moral or lack thereof of modern footy players or lack thereof.

Young Dan Gosling's sneaky free transfer and pathetic plaintif whining (via agent) top amongst the the dicussion so we named ourselves The Dan Gosling Depreciation Society in his "honour". Hope the whinging money-grabbing little prick is proud.

Gosling's agent tries to take the pi$$

Everton have released a statement about the Gosling debacle and the subsequent mudsling by his agent :

In the wake of a report in a Sunday newspaper in which the agent of Dan Gosling made a series of allegations, Everton Football Club has decided to take the unprecedented step of setting straight a record of recent events which has, in its opinion, been deliberately distorted.

In the article, Mr David Hodgson suggested that not only did this Club not wish to extend Mr Gosling's stay at Goodison Park but that it had been deliberately tardy with regard to the formal offer of a new contract, presuming that an injury sustained by the player during the course of last season was of such a serious nature it would prevent him from signing for another club.

Both claims are ludicrous, totally without substance and grossly misleading.

The manager of Everton, David Moyes, and the Chairman, Bill Kenwright, contacted Mr Hodgson in November of last year to jointly offer Dan Gosling a new contract.

Several subsequent conversations took place during the course of which Mr Hodgson not only indicated that the deal offered would be "fine" but also reaffirmed that a "hand-shake agreement" was in place dating back to when Mr Gosling joined the Club as a 17 year-old in January 2008.

It was Everton's understanding that this Gentleman's agreement would guarantee that the player would extend, by at least two years, the three-year deal he signed upon his arrival from Plymouth Argyle.

"In the very long history of our Club, our executive team have never once forgotten or neglected to deal properly and professionally with contractual matters," said Mr Kenwright. "We place our trust in people; we always keep our side of any offered deal - and all we have ever asked is that others do the same."

Everton's CEO, Robert Elstone, confirmed that the Club had wished to extend Mr Gosling's stay on Merseyside.

"We wanted Dan Gosling to stay with us - and, after what we had been told, we expected him to stay with us. However, in the first week in June, Mr Hodgson rang David Moyes seemingly content that he had manoeuvred a situation where Dan was a free agent," he said.

Mr Moyes confirmed that he had spoken - on several occasions - to both player and agent in relation to Mr Gosling's progress and future.

"Dan came to see me and told me that he saw himself as a central midfield player rather than someone who operated in a wide position," he said. " I did not think at that point that he would get into the Everton team as a central midfield player.

"I was always fully aware of the handshake agreement which Dave Hodgson had with a senior Club official regarding Dan's fourth and fifth years - and because of that agreement there wasn't, in my opinion, any necessity to put anything in writing. The first I knew of a problem was when Dave rang me to say that Dan's contract had lapsed and that he would be seeking to leave us on a free transfer.

"I told Dave that he had an agreement with the Club which he was now reneging on. We scouted Dan Gosling and brought him in when several other Premier League clubs looked but did not purchase.

"We feel aggrieved that they have contrived a situation to get the player out of the Club when, if he had come and said that he wanted to leave, we could at least have done something about it - but at no point did Dan say he wished to leave.

"I read at the weekend that he cried when he didn't receive a formal, written offer. Well, trust me, the money Everton were offering was certainly not a crying matter," he added.

The Premier League tribunal found that as Everton had relied upon both a verbal and a Gentleman's agreement and had not put a contractual offer in written form before the acknowledged deadline, Mr Gosling was entitled to leave the Club on a free transfer.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Labour Leadership

Went to the Garston & Halewood Constituency Labour Party meeting last Friday. They gave their support to Andy Burnham after a vote of the members. A lot of love for the local lad but also a lot of respect for the way he listened to people and took their concerns back to Westminster.

Overall there seemed to be a lot of support for the Miliband boys as they were saw potential prime minister material, this viewpoint was opposed by some others who rejected the notion of just picking the candidate who was most likely to get Labour back into power. They picked Diane Abbott although how they can hold her up as the candidate with the principals after her private schools u-turn is a bit beyond me.

For my part I think we need a candidate who will appeal outside the heartland and one who will bring the party together...for me that's Ed Miliband. He seems to have broader appeals than David and seems to command support from a broader spectrum of the party. Ed seems passionate and engaging and I think people will see that and begin to look at Labour as a party that is changing.

One thing that does fill me with condfidence is that there is a great crop of candidates there and the tone of the debate is friendly and, dare I say it, comradely. Looking forward to the debates.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Second Comin by William Butler Yeats

Feeling all poetic today so here's one by William Butler Yeats :

The Second Coming :

TURNING and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Ain't YouTube brilliant

So love having the net,

Reading various articles in The Times this morning and managed to catch up on Carol Vorderman's utter car-crash of a performance on Question Time and viewed the class Victoria Wood Let's Do It song.



And also I have done my own Hitler Downfall parody about Herr Hitler finding out about Dan Gosling leaving Everton on a free.


(sure it'll be removed soon but I just wanted to say I'd done one (even if the only raw file I could find was a mirror image))

Friday, July 16, 2010

Daily Mail Tube Map


This is spot on. The Daily Mail as a tube map, the intersections and shared stations are particularly good.


Find the original at The Poke

Monday, July 12, 2010

Saying Boo to a Goose

(I know I’m probably the millionth person to make that pun)

 

Pretty disappointed in Dan Gosling and his agent’s conduct, agreeing a deal then walking out on his contract ‘cause of some weird clause aimed at protecting young players. Everton, it has to be said, have been massively incompetent but Gosling’s been pretty snidey.

 

He’s not a world beater but it robs Everton and Plymouth of a decent payday and at the end of the day we were the two clubs who looked after him and gave him his chance.

 

World Cup 2010...gone but not forgotten

It was basically an average world cup in terms of football and classic matches but at the end of the day it’s a world cup and even when it’s average it’s brilliant to have it. Much as I’d have liked to see the Dutch and Jonny Heitinga win it Spain are worthy world champions. They just play brilliant footy simple as that, you have to love that.

 

The Netherlands are now out on their own as the best country never to have won it, that’s something I suppose. Hope they win it soon

Thursday, July 01, 2010

All things Everton

So the blues have now signed Araz Abdullayev & Magaye Gueye to join Jermaine Beckford, João Silva & Ján Mucha...not a bad start for Everton this time.

Revealed the new home kit today. Things are moving a-pace for once at Goodison.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Come on Ingerland!

Soooooo nervous about today's England Germany match

Sunday, June 20, 2010

World Cup : Kaka sent off

Bonkers decision. The Ivory Coast player just ran into him, the game just seemed to turn angry in a single moment. Crazy stuff, you could see Kaka talking to Drogba afterwards.

The stupid thing is that now Kaka will be missing against Portugal now and Ivory Coast really need Brazil to win.

The odd thing about the game was that the second Brasil goal, at first, looked excellent but there was two handballs in the move and the ref was clearly talking to the Brazil player asking him if he handled it. Surely if there was any doubt the he disallows the goal. You can understand the Ivorians being angry.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

putting on of these on an egg & smashing it seems a good idea

What a rotten, rotten performance from England. How can you explain or justify it. Ther world cup is in danger turning into a debale for the English.

They look utterly bereft of cohesion, gameplan and team spirit. Rooney and James' reaction were both very telling and very, very worrying.

Nothing even vaguely redeeming about the whole night although ultimately a one nil win is much the same as the nil nil because we still need to beat Slovenia. A two niller would have meant the draw would have been good enough.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

New pink Everton kit, brave or stupid

Apparently it's a traditional Everton colour and in truth I really like the shirt but we are definitely going take some stick.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Evil underdogs

Last night was really tricky, one the one hand you have a team renowned for wonderful football, however that team is currently playing a lot more pragmatic & defensively. On the other hand you have a plucky underdog however one hailing from the world’s most nasty, backward oppressive dictatorships.

 

In truth North Korea were really good, extremely diligent and kept pressing and harrying all game, it was undeniably a great moment when they got their goal.

 

Brazil 2 -1 North Korea

 

There was lots of outrageous scare stories about how the North Korean fans were paid actors, how the game wasn’t going to be shown back in North Korea etc but at the end of the day...as a football match it was just nice to see an emerging nation giving a great account of themselves.

 

PS There is no way that Brazilian player meant that first goal.

 

Shouting "Hup Oranje" in the middle of an office

One thing that's bugging me much more than the vuvuzelas, or the controversial Adidas Jabulani ball this world cup is the game times. I am in work and so only get to watch one in three of the daily games.

12:30, 15:00 and 19:30 makes for pretty lean pickings for us workers. Surely 15:00, 18:00 and 20:00 would be better.

BTW is Hup Oranje what the Dutch fans actually say? Thought they looked very solid in their first game. Denmark are no mugs so that is a decent indication. The Netherlands and Germany could be two teams to keep an eye on.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Puma African Unity football shirt

Not sure if they are wearing this at the world cup but I do think this was a good idea



"To celebrate the FIFA World Cup 2010 in South Africa, Puma have teamed up with nine African football federations to launch the African Unity kit – a revolutionary sporting concept designed to promote harmony across the great continent. Worn by every Puma sponsored African nation, the African Unity shirt comes complete with the crests for selected federations enabling you to iron on the nation of your choice at home. From the vibrant blue of the awesome African sky to the deep brown of the scorched, yet fertile African earth and finally to the yellow of the fiery Africa sun, the Unity shirt represents not only cultural similarities but geographic ones too. Indeed, the bespoke colour, ‘PUMA Africa’, was created by combining actual soil samples from Ghana, the Ivory Coast, South Africa and Cameroon to identify a shade of brown that is truly representative of the earth beneath Africa’s feet.
First revealed as a part of the United Nations’ International Year of Biodiversity campaign - a scheme designed to highlight the importance of preserving areas dense with unique plant and animal life – the Africa Unity shirt is a potent symbol of the continent that is home to nine of the richest and most important sites of biodiversity on earth. The people of Africa received their first sporting glimpse of the shirt at the Orange African Cup of Nations 2010 when the victorious Egypt team wore the Africa Unity kit to collect their seventh competition trophy in front of 50,000 fans in Luanda, Angola. When the nine Puma Africa teams step out in their matching Unity strips at South Africa 2010, they will not only be representing their respective nations, but also their home continent itself. Africa Unity is about more than just sharing sporting success - it’s about sharing culture, language and understanding – everything necessary to invigorate the African spirit and help push the continent forward, in unity, towards a more prosperous and peaceful future."



Puma African Unity shirt




wow, England V Algeria weather forecast

Apparently there is snow forecast for the England Algeria game on Wednesday.

Can't ever remember snow at a world cup (I suppose this is by far the most southerly one ever). Wonder if they'll have an orange Jabulani ball to use.

Incidentally, very sneaky and clever of the Germans to get their hands on the world cup ball a full season ahead of everyone else. Bit naughty of Adidas that it has to be said.

England and others

The England game was a pretty depressing affair, primarily because the exact opposite of what I was expecting happened. I wasn’t at all optimistic beforehand but when you take a step back and look at it they played pretty well individually. The problem was there was no real gameplan on how to open up the US once we’d conceded.

 

Very annoying because Capello was lauded as the best coach in the world before the tournament, why we just persisted in running down blind alleys was the big mystery. So frustrating because the Amercians looked very limited.

 

If you look at the talent in the England side we are no worse than the Germans and yet they were dazzling. A strong, committed, energetic team with a plan. They have probably been the most impressive of all the teams I’ve seen so far.

 

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Waterloo Rugby Club pre-season games

Saturday August 14th
Waterloo V Bromsgrove
Kick off 3pm

Saturday August 21st
Waterloo V Neath
Kick off 2.30pm

Thursday August 26th
Lanc Cup game
Waterloo V West Park
Kick off 7pm

Friday, June 11, 2010

Let unworthy blood water our furrows

It's here at last. World Cup 2010. Love world cups sooooo much. It's basically just a planet-wide festival of football. Will try to post as many reviews as possible.

Obviously being in work this afternoon I didn't catch the opening ceremony but thankfully our lovely, lovely wonderful bosses let us watch it via a projector shining onto on the office wall.

So here we go (here we go, here we go) :

South Africa :
Did okay, all enthusiasm, vim and vigour. Steven Pienaar looked very bright. In truth they should have won it at the death but ultimately they were second best for most of the game.

Mexico :
They looked pretty good actually...very well balanced in midfield. They lack a cutting edge but are a pretty good side. Pretty under-rated overall.

France :
Argh, what to say about Les Bleus. They are so talented but ultimately lacking in a plan. Raymond Domenech struck me as a scapegoat before the tournament but it's difficult to argue against the way he let that game drift. He seemed happy to let his team just dash itself on the rocks.

Uruguay :
Possibly the team who can be the most pleased with the opening day. Well organised, disciplined, energetic, brave and looked at least as likely to win it until they had their man sent off.

and finally.....

The referees, they've been brilliant so far....long may it continue

Dear Planet Earth...


Happy World Cup!

Love, England

Wikipedia Vandalism Genius

Got shown this yesterday from a previous version of John Barnes' Wikipedia page,

Tactics

Teams managed by Barnes are taught to either hold or give the ball, though crucially they must do it at the right time. When in attack, Barnes' sides attempt to get the ball to the line at a variety of speeds ranging from slow to fast. In team talks Barnes always warns his players to be wary of the opposition's attempts to hit them and hurt them in both defence and attack. One criticism levelled at sides managed by Barnes is that one way they beat their opposition is as a result of getting around the back. John Barnes, although born in Jamaica, is a self proclaimed England man, and he refers to his tactical strategy as "the masterplan". Barnes is noted for his opposition to both hooliganism and football songs, and also for his firm belief that, with the crest of the club on their chests, his players cannot go wrong.

I wonder what the funniest, wittiest bit of Wiki-vandalism is

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Big Ben Kay retires

...Why not come back to Waterloo Ben? That'd be a hell of a story if he were to come back to his old stomping ground and steady the ship.

Ben Kay, a member of England's 2003 World Cup-winning team, has confirmed he is to retire from rugby.

The 34-year-old lock left Leicester at the end of the season after the Premiership champions opted not to offer him a new deal.

Kay, who won 62 caps for England, is pursuing a media career and will now work as a commentator with ESPN.

"I had other options but I was keeping things open while ESPN confirmed the deal," Kay told the Guardian.

Kay was an integral part of England's World Cup-winning side seven years ago and also played every minute of every match in 2007 when they also reached the final before losing to South Africa. His career also featured two Lions caps in 2005.

Monday, June 07, 2010

World Cup Wallchart : Check

Finally got myself a world cup wallchart so now the tournament is okay to procede.

Bought The Times on Saturday as it proudly announced Free World Cup Wallchart but it turned out to be some rubbish list of different chants for different nations.

The Observer came up trumps on Sunday so we are all systems go.

Friday, June 04, 2010

New Everton away shirt

As regular readers will know I think that striking Stade Francais style pink shirts are things of beauty. It has to be said I am in the minority in thinking this new Everton shirt is brilliant





Will be getting one definitely.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Pub quiz

Tonight is pub quiz night.....The Itchy Bees will reign supreme at The Victoria in Woolton, providing there is no questions about popular culture and the likes.

Monday, May 24, 2010

And while we are on the subject of sport

Well done to Andy Murray, thought he was dead and buried there :

Murray V Gasquet.

There seemed to be a moment where Gasquet lost in in the 3rd set, amazing how games can turn like that because before that Murray was clutching his knee and he looked out of it.

England V Mexico

This is a useful site :

Where's the match.

Helped me find out what channel the England v Mexico game is on later.

Do not care avout the score one bit, just need an injury free 90 minutes.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Football videos

Two great footy vids just been posted on The People's Forum

Eddie Kavanagh on Phoenix from the flames (Frank Skinner and David Badiel's old footy show)



and this tribute to truly the worst penalty I've ever seen by Leicester City's Yann Kermorgant

Thursday, April 15, 2010

15th April Anniversary of the Hillsborough Disaster

Today is the 21st anniversary of the Hillsborough Disaster...the debates, recriminations and boycotts go on but at the end of the day 96 footy fans went the match and didn't come home.

Tough time of year for a lot of people on Merseyside and a time of reflection for the rest of us.

I've no love of liverpool football club but on days like this blood is thicker than water.



And remember, don't buy The Sun

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Arrrrrrrrrgh! Aston Villa 2-2 Everton

How annoying is that???? Everton really should have won at Villa Park tonight. 90th minute own goal equaliser to deny us the points. Gutted.

A win would have really put us in with a great chance of sneaking a Europe League spot (unless Portsmouth snaffle it in the courts). Don't think it will happen now. Pity really...but ultimately we gave the rest of the league a t month head start and and the business end of the season the wearyness is beginning to show.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Friday, April 09, 2010

Telegraph General Election Map

Love this General Election map found at the Telegraph’s site. It shows all the constituencies laid out rather then geaographically...Big, big north/south divide.

 

Whilst we are at it this is always fun #toryfail

 

footy betting for the weekend

What with the National being on this weekend we are in a gambling mood. Have been looking up the Premier League and FA Cup fixtures at my favourite online bookies.

 

On Saturday we have :

Hull v Burnley   

Home : 3/4

Draw : 5/2

Away : 15/4

 

West Ham v Sunderland              

Home : 11/10

Draw : 9/4

Away : 13/5

 

Then to Sunday :

 

Wolves v Stoke

Home : 5/4

Draw : 9/4

Away : 9/4

 

Blackburn v Man Utd     

Home : 6/1

Draw : 3/1

Away : 1/2

 

 

Liverpool v Fulham         

Home : 3/10

Draw : 4/1

Away : 10/1

 

 

Man City v Birmingham

Home : 4/9

Draw : 16/5

Away : 13/2

               

Add in the FA Cup games :

 

Aston Villa v Chelsea

Home : 5/1

Draw : 14/5

Away : 4/7

 

Tottenham v Portsmouth

Home : 3/10

Draw : 4/1

Away : 9/1

 

So shooting from the hip I'll go for X 1 X 2 1 1 2 1 (Ie Hull & Burnley to draw, Wham to beat Sunderland, Wolves to draw with Stoke, Utd to win, our neighbours to squeak past a leggy Fulham, City to beat a deck-chaired Birmingham and Chelsea and Spurs to win their FA Cup semis with some to spare).

 

A £1 bet will bring back £137 on that lot...but of course it won't happen. Anyone got any tips for the National?

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Cap doff of the night

Superb, superb stuff from Fulham once again...still smarts how tamely Everton went out of Europe but it's great to see such craft and endeavour from a team loving their European experience.

Not even going to mention that lot across the park...noticed a swagger and a few cocky comments aimed at United...it's like they never got knocked out of the Champions League all those months. Even if they go onto win the Europa League their "European tournaments knocked out of" column will read the same as everyone else's.

Their ability to collectively airbrush their own perceptions and cheerfully ignore their own double standards is jaw-dropping. I mean I know full well that's a sweeping generalisation and you shouldn't tar everyone with the same brush but really.

Anyway the night belongs to Fulham.

Last night belonged to Barca...I remember them kicking Arsenal off the park in Paris a few years ago but now they are just the most awesome footy side you've ever seen. Any true footy fan should have affection for Barca. Mes que un Club.

Masterchef doesn't getting more ridiculous than this

Ah well, we all love it...the hyperbole is as overblown as ever, the cliff hangers even more climactic, the hosts ever more breathless but Masterchef is probably the only reality tv show I'll ever bother with.

Nice to have Greg and John back together although we miss Michel and Monica ("Get that garnish on the plate NOW").

This year the standard is higher than ever I'd say (although last year's professionals were something else). Glad Dhruv Baker won in the end because A: he was the best one but B: Food Blogger Alex just seemed to build himself up with every soundbite "this was an amazing experience and it just proves how great I am" (well okay, not quite).

Hope there three of them do well, I think I'd happilly go to any Masterchef finalist's resaurant....I would love to know what the finalists cooked in the first Masterchef final compared the quite bonkersly good food getting presented nowadays

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Life's a beach

Well, my previous post was musing on Everton’s impetus & attitude between now and the end of the season...any questions I had over that have been blown away by two superb wins.

 

Bolton provided their annual festival of fouling but ultimately came up short. It was gratifying that a team of thugs can still be outplayed by a determined, committed, well organised and above all skillfull team. I have no sympathy for them at all ‘cause they are nothing but a team of thugs who run all day and throw their weight around.

 

More than anything it was totally joyous to see that old style Arteta free-kick sailing into the net. There’s nobody better than Mikel Arteta!

 

Then we move onto City...poor, poor Joleon Lescott ruled himself out with a hamstring injury leaving him to watch helplessly from the stands as Everton took his fellow mercenaries to the cleaners. True we rode our luck more than we did in the Goodison fixture (when Everton were immense) but ultimately the blues showed that a team that has grown organically will always beat a crowd of hastily assembled cherry picked talent.

 

Today Liverpool fans are pretending we did them a favour last night when everyone on Merseyside knows that a draw would have been by far the best result. Whether Everton finish above the like of our neighbours or Villa is still a big long-shot but to rally from forth from bottom and an utterly ridiculous injury list to be 3 points outside the Europa League place is a superb effort.

 

COYB!!!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Coleman & Vaughan

I notice in recent weeks Everton have loaned out James Vaughan and Seamus Coleman to Leicester City and Blackpool respectively. This would back up my theory that Everton have got the deck-chairs out already...players like that would be very useful in a competitive run-in.

 

Hope they do well though because they are players with tonnes of potential, first team football will help them a heck of a lot.

 

 

So what next for Everton?

No Fellaini, no Donovan and a big old gap up to the positions that matter and a big cushion between us and the drop. Some great results recently (Beating Chelsea and United back to back was fantastic and Donovan’s swan song against Hull was great) but you get the feeling that the Spurs and Birmingham games needed to yield at least 4 points for us to keep things rolling.

 

Arteta & Jagielka coming back is a big tonic so do we just sit back and enjoy it all or pin our hopes on a miracle?

 

Ah well, already signed up for next season....got a free scarf for my promptness.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Explanations please : Sporting Lisbon 3-0 Everton

Can someone explain how that happened. Everton were ABJECT. Not inexplicable in itself, we’ve been crap enough for me to know when we deserve a hiding. Last night was bizarre because from the first whistle we just looked miles off the pace. They played like they were in a coma...BUT we are arguably the best team in the Premier League at the moment.

 

So that’s it...a tame fluffing of our lines and our season is looking over with nothing to hope for except the FA Cup going to form and someone above us going into freefall.

 

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Monday, February 22, 2010

Everton 3 - 1 Man Utd

I would like to think that that match was a watershed for Everton. It was massively significant because no0t only did we beat Man Utd, a rare thing in itself, but we out played them.

It reminded me of last season's 1-1 draw with Arsenal...we didn't beat them in the same old way. We out footballed them, Saturday was the same.

Our successes against big, powerful, classy top-4 sides usually come from a high-tempo, tight gameplan...it's wonderful to see Everton turning on the style and coming out on top.

Absolutely bouncing.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Well done to the New Orleans Saints

Nice story after Hurrican Katrina.

Am gobsmacked how little the ball is in play during an American football match though :

American Football Game-time breakdown.

Game Time 01.57.00 Standing Around 01.09.40 Playing Time 00.11.25 Replays 00.14.21 Sideline Player Shots 00.04.00 Crowd Shots 00.00.19 Referee Shots 00.03.39 Coach Shots 00.06.17

Wonder how much the ball is in play for footy & rugby?

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Terrace genius at the rugby

Ugh Yesterday was grim, if England hadn't have won I'd have went to see Invictus fully expecting the All Blacks to beat South Africa in the 95 world cup final.

Everton ballsed up a perfect opportunity to best our nearest and dearest and Waterloo went down to Caldy.

At least this week we went down fighting unlike the previous week's abject humiliation against Macclesfield.

Moment of the day was when we were baiting on of their props, he sarcastically wiped a mock tear from his eye at which point someone piped up "If you want to cry you should come up here and try standing with us".

Friday, January 15, 2010

Ludicrous decisions at the test

From The Times :

A second highly contentious ruling in successive days by Darryl Harper, the third umpire, may yet prove a pivotal moment in this third Test.

If Harper’s decision not to call a no-ball when Alastair Cook was leg before on the first day was one of those 50-50 cases that England eventually chose to accept, the Australian official’s failure to pick up the noise of an edge from Graeme Smith appeared to have been a bad error on his part.

Cutting at Ryan Sidebottom early in the morning session when 15, Smith was reprieved by umpire Tony Hill despite impassioned appeals from England close fielders, who clearly heard something. The South Africa captain added a further 90 runs to his score before England eventually dismissed him, Andrew Strauss taking a smart catch at first slip after Smith edged a ball that left him in the air - but the damage had been done.

The decision to give Smith not out had immediately been referred to Harper, who rejected the review. When the television tapes were played back, a noise was clearly audible, although no deviation could be seen either by Hawk-Eye or the naked eye. Often, a very thin edge, or ‘feather’ as it is known in the game, cannot be picked up on TV, but the noise could not have been anything bar an edge as the bat was a long way from the pad and ground.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/cricket/article6989297.ece

AbNormal service?

Ugh...after the optimism of the two battling last wicket draws and the comfortable win what has happened at the final test?????

Well it looks like the South Africans have definitely prepared a "result" wicket but both teams have to play on it.

England look like batting first, being asked to follow on and still lose by an innings.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Don't count your chickens. Liverpool 1 - 2 Reading (AET)

Oof, not having a gloat or anything...we’ve all been there (Oldham, Shrewsbury etc) but prior to Reading’s FA Cup win at Anfield last night Liverpool FC were sending this around to its cup ticket scheme members. Did they learn nothing from their pre-decorated Athens Champions League victory parade bus?

 

Dear XXXX,

As a valued member of the Auto Cup Scheme, we’d like to confirm details for the following FA Cup match:

FA Cup
Liverpool v Burnley (4th Round)
Saturday 23rd January 2010. Kick Off: 12.45pm
The Ticket Office will begin taking payments for the above game from Thursday 14th January.

Please note: customers whose payments fail will not be notified due to the short timescale involved. Payment failure and subsequent non purchase of a ticket for this game in the competition will result in the removal from the scheme.

We do advise that you check your 'purchase history' on line at www.liverpoolfc.tv to ensure that a seat has been purchased for this game. Alternatively, please contact Customer Services on 0844 844 2005.

Season Ticket Holders whose normal seat is available (i.e. the seat used at F.A. Premier League matches) for this match WILL NOT receive a match ticket. The respective fan cards will be activated for this match and Season Ticket Holders should access the stadium using their fan cards.

Season Ticket Holders who cannot be offered their normal seats WILL receive a match ticket for an alternative seat.

Those customers who are unsure whether their normal seats are available can check for this information on-line or alternatively contact the Customer Services Department for clarification (0844 844 2005).

If your credit or debit card has expired or is about to, or you have had a replacement card (even if one or two numbers have changed) can you please ensure that your details are updated as soon as possible to ensure that you are allocated a seat for this game. Details of updated credit or debit card numbers, expiry/start dates etc can be provided by calling Customer Services - 0844 844 2005 or alternatively can be faxed to 0151 261 1416 for the attention of the ACS Team or put in writing to the ACS Team, LFC Ticket Office, PO Box 204, L69 PQ. Please be advised that we are no longer able to accept Maestro, Switch or Solo cards for recurring debit card payments relating to card schemes.

For further details, please refer to the terms and conditions in your season ticket renewal booklet.t.

Kind Regards,

The Ticket Office