This is despite Arsenal being only five points behind with a match in hand.
However, they also acknowledge that Ian Holloway’s Blackpool side is the team of the season so far, according to research by Barclays, the title sponsor of the League Managers Association (LMA).
Eighty per cent of managers surveyed believe Sir Alex Ferguson’s side will reclaim the Barclays Premier League trophy this season with the same number saying that Blackpool has been the team of the season to this point.
Managers were also agreed that the competitiveness of this season’s Barclays Premier League is down to the great strength in depth (60 per cent) the League has to offer, rather than due to the top teams being weaker than in previous seasons.
Other findings included :
– Managers put man management as the most important skill they can have (53 per cent), with tactical know how and ability to manage the board the least important aspects of doing their job well.
– Sir Alex Ferguson was named the best manager in the history of the Barclays Premier League (87 per cent) as well as being voted the greatest football manager of all time (27 per cent), ahead of other legendary names such as Jock Stein (20 per cent) and Bob Paisley (13 per cent).
– Manchester United veteran Ryan Giggs was voted the greatest player to have graced the Premier League (47 per cent) beating Eric Cantona (27 per cent) and Alan Shearer (13 per cent) to the honour.
– Tottenham Hotspur’s Rafael Van der Vaart was voted the best signing of the season having become Spurs’ leading goal scorer following his summer move from Real Madrid.
First of all, I’m not cheating or will never ever cheat on my life. But, my history or past surrounded my mind. What I must to do with my future.. I don’t care anymore..!! And I really don’t like my phone number..!! WHY?? Because I’m very angry when received message from some idiot..!!
Looks have nothing to do with self-worth or whether people like me or not. It is what is inside me that counts, and beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Look around…. I bet all of us will see plenty of people, that we don’t think are attractive, in relationships. Everybody has their own qualities that makes them unique. I just need to seek out friends that share on same interests. Or someone who understanding my life movement & trusted on me..
Towards life, I will never ever looked back cause it doesn’t mean anything to me..!! Just carry on with my life whether good or not.. I humble myself to received anything consequences. In life, we must know… something..
“Anything can happen..!! Lightning could strike”..
Netherlands survived a scare Tuesday to beat Hungary 5-3 and maintain its 100% record in European Championship qualifying.
Hungary scored twice in five minutes at the start of the second half to lead 2-1. Wesley Sniejder equalized and veteran striker Ruud van Nistelrooy put the Dutch ahead, but Hungary playmaker Zoltan Gera made it 3-3 with 15 minutes left to again threaten the Group E leader.
Dirk Kuyt secured victory with two goals in the last 12 minutes to take the Netherlands to 18 points from six matches, nine clear of Hungary and on the verge of a place in next year’s tournament.
Netherlands, which opened the scoring in the 13th through Robin van Persie, is still on course to qualify but coach Bert van Marwijk lamented the defensive frailties of a side that reached last year’s World Cup final. While Robin van Persie faces another injury lay-off. The striker was forced off with a knee injury before half time of Holland’s incredible 5-3 win over Hungary in their Euro 2012 Group E qualifying tie in Amsterdam. Van Persie had opened the scoring for Holland after 13 minutes but was forced to leave the field a minute before the interval following a late tackle by Vilmos Vanczak.
“You need to have discipline,” van Marwijk said. “We started well, scored a quick goal but then things changed. We kept losing the ball unnecessarily.” Van Persie, who has suffered from knee problems in the past, was not too badly injured, according to Holland coach Bert Van Marwijk. ‘It didn’t look very serious but it was too painful for him to carry on as he was hit by a knee just above his own knee,’ the coach said.
Liverpool’s Dirk Kuyt’s late double secured victory for Holland to give the Dutch a 14th consecutive victory in qualifying matches after Hungary hit back to draw level at 3-3 at one stage.
The Netherlands, which last week beat Hungary 4-0 with its crisp passing game, produced a disjointed performance and struggled to counter a well-organized Hungarian attack.
Although most hardware technology companies offer protective gear and cases for their gadgets, they also rely on third-party companies to create and design a variety of products. Over the past few years, partly fueled by the creation of delicate mobile devices with large flat screens, these companies have become an integral part of a product’s success — and a multi-million dollar business.
When Apple announced its latest iPad 2 this month, one of the featured updates it showcased was its own Smart Cover, a sleek protective overlay for the iPad 2 that also turns the device on or off when opened or closed.
As my colleague Miguel Helft noted recently, although companies that sell cases for the iPad are impressed with Apple’s new Smart Cover design, competitors said they were confident they would be able to offer a better and more innovative solution.
Judging from the few iPad 2 covers that have been announced so far, it looks competitors might be have a few tricks up their sleeves.
One product that is gaining a lot of attention is called the Miniot Cover, which is made of wood and can bend in a number of directions to allow the iPad to stand upright or lay at an angle for typing. The Miniot is expected to be introduced in late March and cost around $70.
Incase, which makes protective sleeves for a number of devices, is offering a case called the Origami Workstation. This case folds into different angles which allows the iPad 2 to prop up like a computer screen and also offers a resting spot for an external Bluetooth keyboard.
Belkin, another case manufacturer, is taking a different approach from Apple by offering a case that protects both the front and rear of the iPad 2. These covers also look more professional and business-like and the company said a range of options were expected to introduced in coming weeks.
Finally, a number of unique cases are beginning to appear on Etsy.com, the handmade craft Web site. One in particular that seems promising is a felt sleeve that fits over an iPad 2 and its Smart Cover. This is a solution for those who want to keep the Apple Smart Cover, but need a little extra protection during a commute.
What are your thoughts on the status of the human world?
Is the human race just waiting for extinction from ourselves all blowing each other up?
Do any of you think that we need a hero to save the day and if you do what kind of hero would you think would work a punisher a hippie or any others?
NO.. we don’t…!! You may ask why? cause we all got a super hero in ourself. Humans are blowing each other up. That’s a good point but it can be stop if the human want too stop it..! If we everyone can look into our heart and find the super hero sleeping hidden in ourself who need a super hero that who can fly or can sling web??
What is so-called superhero we most needed..?
In the real world, we need a wise LEADER who lead the world to peace, love & harmony… This is what we want…!! but can we relying on this leader…??
Or world organisation..?
Just think..!! & ask your heart & self.. The answers is yours…
John Terry wore the captain’s armband with pride in Cardiff yesterday as he led England to a priceless Euro 2012 qualifying triumph against Wales – and warned that rival Rio Ferdinand’s international days might be numbered.
Terry, controversially reappointed England captain last week, shrugged off that furore and silenced the Welsh booboys with a towering display to send Fabio Capello’s new-look team to the top of Group G.
Terry even warned that his rock-solid partnership with Michael Dawson could mean Ferdinand, the man he deposed as England captain, will struggle to get back into the team.
While the injured Manchester United centre-back was tweeting his support for his team-mates, Dawson was producing a commanding effort alongside Terry, who said: ‘There’s a lot of competition for the central defensive positions but I thought Dawson has made it his own.’
The Chelsea defender had a hand in Frank Lampard’s penalty opener – it was Terry’s pass that sent Ashley Young into the area, where he was upended by James Collins – then led the celebrations when Darren Bent smashed in the second.
It was a display that more than justified Capello’s decision to make Terry captain again, a year after he was stripped of the honour following a series of lurid headlines about his private life.
The England boss, who has vowed to meet Ferdinand this week to explain his decision, said: ‘All the players played well but John Terry is an experienced player.’
Terry could not have wished to end a difficult week on a better note – and he believed it was an ear-splitting chorus of Welsh boos that greeted the playing of God Save The Queen before kick-off that was the inspiration England needed to put the Welsh in their place.
‘They were booing the National Anthem and the players were very pumped up because of that,’ he said. ‘The players are very proud and ready for the game but when you hear that you get pumped up even more. We showed that from the start.
‘When you go away you expect things like that but, when you hear it, it makes you stick your chest out even more. You can hear the English fans singing and you want to do it for them as well as yourself.’
Terry was also quick to pay tribute to Capello for the tactical change that turned what might have been a tricky fixture into a match that was effectively over midway through the first half.
Capello had gambled with a 4-3-3 formation, with Wayne Rooney and Ashley Young operating wide, and Terry said: ‘I thought we played very well, especially in the first half.
‘The formation from the manager was very positive and that vibe got around the dressing room. ‘We worked on 4-3-3 during the week. We pressed them hard and we made it difficult for them to play out.’
The captaincy row shows no sign of going away after Terry suggested Dawson had done enough to keep Ferdinand out of the team for England’s next qualifier against Switzerland at Wembley in June. While the injured Manchester United centre-back was tweeting his support for his team-mates, Dawson was producing an outstanding effort alongside Terry.
The Chelsea defender said: ‘He has gained a lot of valuable experience in the Champions League.
‘Big competitions breed big players and he has certainly done well in the last couple of games.’
Terry’s glowing view of his new defensive partner will not have been lost on Ferdinand, who is sidelined with a calf injury and has made just one England appearance this season.
Dawson said: ‘All I can do is play well when I get the chance and prove to the manager that I am worth it. ‘There is a lot of competition but I hope to be given my chance.’
Capello plans peace talks with Ferdinand this week, saying: ‘I will speak to him about what really happened and explain my decision.’
Allied fighters struck targets in Tripoli on a fourth day of airstrikes, but the forces loyal to Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi showed no signs of ending their attacks on rebel-held cities. Meanwhile, disputes continued within the allied coalition over how the military campaign should continue and under whose command.
President Obama has said that the purpose of this mission into Libya is to protect civilians. While the allies appear close to establishing a no-fly zone over the country, the airstrikes have not yet succeeded in the broader aim to force Colonel Qaddafi to withdraw his forces from embattled cities and cease all attacks against civilians.
What is a pragmatic plan for the United States at this juncture? What is the next step?
Harry Redknapp hit back at claims Tottenham sent Gareth Bale to Wales carrying the hamstring injury which has forced him out of Saturday’s Euro 2012 qualifier against England.
Spurs manager Redknapp insists Bale was fully fit when he left the club, although Wales boss Gary Speed is adamant the 21-year-old reported lame, complaining of tight hamstrings.
Speed and his outspoken assistant Raymond Verheijen claimed scans proved Bale pulled a hamstring in his right leg last week, provoking an angry response from White Hart Lane.
‘I wouldn’t have let him go if he had an injury,’ Redknapp told Sportsmail. ‘Gareth played for 90 minutes against West Ham on Saturday and they tell me the figures from that game show he covered more ground than he’s ever done before.
The Tottenham star has been forced to withdraw from the qualifier in Cardiff because of a hamstring injury. We can reveal he will return to London this morning where he will be assessed by his club. A Wales insider said: “It’s a bitter blow for Gareth because he was so keen to play but there is no chance that he’ll be fit in time.” The winger was recently hailed as ‘the best footballer in the Premier League’ on current form by England boss Fabio Capello. But he had only just returned to action for Spurs after six weeks out with a back injury and it is believed his hamstring problem could be related to that.
Bale, 21, pulled up lame in training yesterday and was told he has no chance of being able to face the Three Lions at the Millennium Stadium. But it is hoped he will be fine for his club’s crunch Champions League quarter-final with Real Madrid on April 5. Bale also suffered a knock on his thigh in training with Spurs last week but recovered in time to face West Ham. He has emerged as a leading contender to be named Player of the Year for his performances but there are concerns his rise to stardom has come at a price with the season taking its toll on his body. England striker Peter Crouch knows only too well the threat Bale poses – as a team-mate at Tottenham. Crouch said: “Sometimes he’s just unplayable. What he did to Inter this season showed people what he is capable of.”
‘There was no sign of a hamstring injury. He’s not come in after the game and said his hamstrings were tight.
‘When he left here on Saturday, off he went and he certainly wasn’t injured.
‘He hasn’t had a hamstring injury. He had a back, then he had a tight thigh and we’ve
been very careful with him.
‘Now he’s got a hamstring. He must’ve done it with Wales. I’m not blaming anyone. It’s no-one’s fault.
‘The first I heard of it was at 10 o’clock on Wednesday night when our physio called me. I feared the worst but he’s seen our physio and it’s only tightness.
‘There’s no tear but if he plays and it pings, he’s had it.’
Redknapp hopes Bale will be fit to play for Spurs at Wigan, a week on Saturday, and in the first leg of the Champions League quarter-final against Real Madrid in Spain three days later.
Speed said the winger was keen to play against England but had been sent back to his club to avoid risking a more serious injury.
The Wales boss said: ‘Gareth wanted to wait and see if he could give it a go but the decision was made as soon as we received the reports back from the scan.
‘The scan was to put his mind at rest but then it showed something. There is a little nick in there, a little fluid. You can tell by the scans he was injured last week.
‘He reported on Sunday and said he felt stiffness with Saturday being his first game in a while. We left him out of training on Sunday and Monday. He did the warm-up on Tuesday and felt a bit of tightness, so we took him off. He didn’t train Wednesday and that’s when we took him for a scan.
‘It was a no-brainer. I might have been able to play because I’m so slow but if you are as explosive as Gareth, it could have been a real problem. We don’t want to be putting him back for the rest of the season. Spurs have got some massive games coming up and the player’s welfare is of paramount importance.’
Dutch coach Verheijen is a fitness and conditioning expert who recently criticised the training methods of Manchester United and Manchester City.
He wrote on his Twitter page: ‘The incompetent amateurs struck again.’
It seemed like a slur on Tottenham but he quickly back-tracked, claiming the ‘incompetent amateurs’ were news organisations reporting Bale had been injured in training with Wales.
Speed, just three months into the job, is anxious not to ruin the relationship with his best player’s club and confirmed he had asked Verheijen to curb his remarks.
He said: ‘He has been an independent consultant for a while but that is different to being part of an association. That is one of the things we have cleared up today.’
In the last 5 years, Manchester United had won the hat-trick of Premier League titles & reached 2 Champions League finals. They remain on course for a Treble this season. The club have an estimated 50 million fans worldwide and are arguably the biggest on the planet. Should be rolling in cash then. Should be spending millions on the world’s greatest players to entertain the bumper 76,000 crowds that carry on packing into Old Trafford. Crowds that have seen the cost of their tickets soar by 42 per cent in the nearly six years the club have been in the charge of their American owners – the Glazer family.
Incredibly, the prospect of United spending big on players has increasingly become a fantasy in the Theatre of Dreams. Depressing figures released yesterday show United LOST £108.9m over the last financial year to June 2010. Which means instead of new stars, the monies United fans help generate are now financing the huge debts from the Glazer takeover. United have been milked of around £400m in interest payments and charges since the Americans took control in 2005. A figure that went up by nearly £100m in the course of the last financial year. In that same time, only a net £56m has been reinvested in the team. A net spend less than that of Manchester City, Chelsea, Tottenham, Aston Villa and Sunderland.
Under the Glazers, the average season ticket in Old Trafford’s South Stand has gone up from around £500 to £930. Clear proof that the fans have been hit hardest under the Americans’ ownership. Duncan Drasdo is chief executive of the Manchester United Supporters Trust, which helped organise the anti-Glazer Green and Gold movement. He has been voicing his anger for many years over how supporters have been hit in the pocket to finance the Glazer regime. Drasdo said: “It sickens people that they are paying increased ticket prices every season under the Glazers but the money is just being wasted and not invested in the playing squad.” United will tell you there is £120m in the bank waiting to be invested in players. Fans are certainly not holding their breath. How much better off would United have been had they not been bought by the Glazers and had they not seen £400m go out of the window?
United had no debt and no interest payments before the Glazers’ stunning £790m takeover, which sparked a fans’ revolt. Last October, the club’s star player Wayne Rooney voiced his own concerns about the future of the club and a lack of investment. That mirrored the fans’ feelings, though Rooney felt that his worries had been addressed before he signed his megabucks new contract.
Chief executive David Gill insists there is certainly no pressure on to sell players and they are in the market to buy. He declared: “We have money in the bank so there is zero pressure on that, no pressure at all to sell any star player whether it is Wayne Rooney or X, Y or Z. I can categorically say that.” United have invested in the likes of Chris Smalling from Fulham at £12m and Javier Hernandez from Mexican club Chivas Guadalajara at £7m for this season. But the marquee signings United fans had come to expect, and believe the club need to maintain their constant push for all the major trophies, have been nowhere to be seen in recent years.
Most notably, United found themselves outbid for their main summer target of 2009, when Karim Benzema went to Real Madrid from Lyon for £30m. Off the pitch, United became the first club to break the £100m commercial revenue barrier. The same figure again has been made from media revenues. That, too, is positive. They also now make around £100m from matchday revenue per year, the vast majority of which comes, of course, from ticket sales. Despite the startling figures, which have angered United fans year on year, this is what Gill had to say about recent figures.
He stated: “We have a long-term financing structure in place, excellent revenues that are growing, we are controlling our costs – total wages are 46 per cent of turnover – and we can afford the interest on our long-term finance.” In August 2004, when he was fighting against the Glazers’ takeover, which he claimed would be ‘unmanageable’, Gill said: “Debt is the road to ruin.” Fast forward to this year’s figures and Gill revealed: “I can’t speak for any other club but the United fans should not be concerned.” Presumably, he meant the fans who can still afford to go to Old Trafford.