Global Football Odds & Ends

Kliq

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Mar 31, 2013
15,357
Yeah I saw the Macclesfield Town news yesterday, horrible story. It also looks like Southend United is in serious trouble.
 

Cellar-Door

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Aug 1, 2006
21,509

Dummy Hoy

Angry Pissbum
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Jul 22, 2006
7,188
Falmouth
That’s all okay though, because GARETH BALE IS COMING BACK TO ENGLAND and LIVERPOOL GOT THIAGO FOR ON 30m!
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
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Dec 15, 2002
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Yeah I saw the Macclesfield Town news yesterday, horrible story. It also looks like Southend United is in serious trouble.
It's dumb that England has national leagues all the way down to the fifth level. They should regionalize the 4th and 5th tiers, save on travel costs, and have more local rivalry games.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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Jun 15, 2002
3,811
Well I guess that’s one way to settle the argument of whether he’s a crap manager who had a good situation at Ajax or whether he is so profoundly Dutch that those fool South Americans (and North Americans, and Italians, and English) could not appreciate him.

I think my description implies where I place my bets.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
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Dec 15, 2002
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I don't know where exactly to post this, but I wanted to take a moment to acknowledge the passing of Daryl Grove, the co-host of the Total Soccer Show podcast. TSS is one of the bigger and long-running podcasts in the American soccer sphere, and Daryl played a role in giving many others advice and a platform that allowed them to carve out their niche in the American soccer media landscape. As a listener from afar, Daryl was a valuable voice for his soccer insight, but what I liked best about him was his infectious enthusiasm, positivity, and ability to find a silver lining in everything — this guy was a truly an amazing presence, the closest thing American soccer media had to a Fred Rogers figure, IMO. As a transplanted Englishman who fully embraced all things American soccer, his viewpoint was always interesting.

Colon cancer, age 40. Life is not fair.

There has been a tremendous outpouring of support on American Soccer Twitter after his passing, and even from Wolverhampton Wanderers' (the club he supported) own social media account. All of the tributes that reference his intro (an extremely enthusiastic and wholesome "Hello and welcome!") and his sign-off ("Taylor, thank you for taking the time to talk to me to today") make me tear up, every time.

RIP

https://www.mlssoccer.com/post/2020/10/23/influential-soccer-podcaster-daryl-grove-passes-away-after-cancer-battle
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
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Here are a few anecdotes I randomly found through a Twitter search:

fussball fan
@fussballfan7
@darylgrove @TBRock00 @TotalSoccerShow somewhere, deep in the archives of my emails I have an email chain from Daryl Grove in 2017, where he asks about my scouting report. I apologized, and we had a conversation about my depression and why I’d been slacking off. He reached out

2:52am · 24 Oct 2020

fussball fan @fussballfan7
16h
Weeks later he reached out. didn’t care about the report. Just wanted to know if I was doing better. Im a random dude. When @davisjsn tweeted “Daryl Grove is the best of us” he wasn’t saying it in remembrance. He’s quite literally the best of us. Not soccer pundits/fans. Humans.



View: https://twitter.com/quraishi/status/1319718495517630465



Stoli @J_Stoli
1d
It’s a weird feeling when a death is so impactful even if you’ve never met them. I listed to @TotalSoccerShow since 2014. Really helped me get over depression. @darylgrove will be sorely missed.

Josh Mlot @josh_mlot
1d
It’s strange to say the loss of someone I’ve never met will leave a big void in my life, but @darylgrove talked to me most days of the week for the better part of the last decade. He will be missed. Thoughts are with the Grove and @TotalSoccerShow families.


View: https://twitter.com/TotalSoccerShow/status/1319629423533084674


Hillel Hoffmann @HillelHoffmann
1d
The late @darylgrove of @TotalSoccerShow is the only person in professional media whose relentless positivity and sweetness made me feel better as soon as I heard his voice. He was medicine. A coping strategy. In dark times, I thought: "I need some Daryl." #HelloAndWelcome

Ryan Hair @ryanhair22
1d
. @darylgrove was one of the biggest reasons my soccer fandom grew to what it is today. RIP.

la prima de todos (pero de lejos) @aerm0911
1d
This is just heartbreaking. It’s a testament to @darylgrove spirit that I’m in tears over someone I never met and yet felt like such an integral part of this American soccer community. We’ll miss you, Daryl! You were beloved and always will be.
 

Dummy Hoy

Angry Pissbum
SoSH Member
Jul 22, 2006
7,188
Falmouth
Thanks for posting that tribute. I haven’t listed to TSS in a bit, I’ve got a lot of others I listen to, but there’s a reason Darryl was so beloved. It was that enthusiasm and positivity you mentioned. This year sucks.
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
15,012
Pittsburgh, PA
TIL: During qualification for the 1986 World Cup, Scotland manager Jock Stein died during a match at Wales; he suffered a heart attack immediately after his team scored a late equalizer.

I suppose if you're going to pick a way to go out, that's not a bad one. Then again, look at who replaced him...
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
15,012
Pittsburgh, PA
Pulisic did that a year before they moved him, didn't they? Or is it just that they do it once you turn 18, because you can sign a different kind of contract?
 

PedroSpecialK

Comes at you like a tornado of hair and the NHL sa
SoSH Member
Dec 12, 2004
26,266
Cambridge, MA
General purpose Iranian national team update, starting with legendary manager Carlos Queiroz being axed as manager of the Colombian national team.

I pine for Queiroz back as coach of Team Melli, especially after the mercifully short reign of thief / charlatan / overall fat fuck of a clown Marc Wilmots - but I'd imagine Queiroz knows better than to return to a federation whose payouts are controlled by a combination of US sanctions and Islamic Republic fuckery.

The greatest generation of Iranian football is likely to go by the wayside in terms of international accomplishments due to the coaching instability, as well as the urgency for Iranian players to seek financial security over playing time. Some examples of this include Alireza Jahanbakhsh taking too big of a step up at Brighton to become their record signing after one good year at AZ Alkmaar, Mehdi Taremi signing for Porto after a show-me season at Rio Ave where he owned part of his transfer rights - only to be benched, and defensive stalwart Morteza Pouraliganji habitually taking the money in China / Qatar over European offers for the past 5 years, etc.

Iran's current hopes for success on the European continent are:
  • A resurgence / rebirth at Brighton for Jahanbakhsh - he was a key player over the festive period in '19-'20 (including a bicycle kick against Chelsea that is without a doubt the pinnacle of Iranian footballing achievement in Europe), but has had a series of muscle injuries and is benched in favor of uninspiring players (to say the least) in Potter's 3-4-2-1 these days
  • Sardar Azmoun progressing to a bigger club than Zenit - though he and Artem Dzyuba have formed an impressive partnership, and he has a linguistic / footballing bond with his Turkmen manager Sergei Semak (Azmoun is from Gonbad Kavus, abutting Turkmenistan in northeast Iran). With the dip in Jahanbakhsh's form, Azmoun is our biggest hope - I think he would do an outstanding job in a physical, Raul Jimenez-type skilled target man role.
  • Mehdi Taremi unseating Moussa Marega for the starting spot as Porto's #9 - Marega has been awful this season, so I'm cautiously optimistic Taremi and his penalty-winning ways will earn him into the first team squad
  • Milad Mohammadi progressing beyond Gent, where he has starred at left back - there was smoke around him moving to Leeds in the summer, but Stuart Dallas has stolen the show there.
  • Alireza Beiranvand playing his way into a starting role at Antwerp - I rate him extremely highly and am surprised he hasn't earned the spot yet, but some obvious bias at play there
  • The Charleroi boys Kaveh Rezaei and Ali Gholizadeh continuing to play regularly and well enough to earn a Ligue 1 / EFL Championship move, though Rezaei is rapidly approaching Reza Ghoochannejhad status given he's already 28
  • Saman Ghoddos avoiding eating his way out of top-flight football - he's just transferred to Brentford after serving a 4 month suspension with (now Ligue 2 side) Amiens stemming from a complaint filed by SD Huesca following his transfer from Swedish side Östersund, but he is looking and playing like he's been consuming kabab nonstop for 9 months

Iran lost their matches to Bahrain and Iraq earlier in qualifying, the former being a particularly humiliating 1-0 defeat, the latter a 2-1 heartbreaker with Alaa Abbas scoring in stoppage time to secure the three points for Iraq. There are four matches remaining for qualifying, with the return legs against Bahrain / Iraq as must-wins for Iran to at least achieve 2nd in the group of 5 (along with Hong Kong and Cambodia).

In short, a ton has to go right for Team Melli to turn around and remain a powerhouse in Asia. We were so close to advancing out of the group of death with Portugal, Spain, and Morocco in '18, with payment to the team being withheld all the while due to sanctions. At this point, we are looking unlikely to qualify in '22 barring some unexpected results under Dragan Skočić, in large part due to Wilmots treating Team Melli with the same care as a day-old plate of moules-frites for his disastrous months in chage.

I hope there is an opportunity for Iranian football to progress beyond this point in my lifetime, but I'm not all that optimistic given both the direction the Iranian economy is taking, and the proclivity for diaspora players to turn their back on the national team (looking at you, Daniel Arzani).
 
Last edited:

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
12,277
General purpose Iranian national team update, starting with legendary manager Carlos Queiroz being axed as manager of the Colombian national team.

I pine for Queiroz back as coach of Team Melli, especially after the mercifully short reign of thief / charlatan / overall fat fuck of a clown Marc Wilmots - but I'd imagine Queiroz knows better than to return to a federation whose payouts are controlled by a combination of US sanctions and Islamic Republic fuckery.

The greatest generation of Iranian football is likely to go by the wayside in terms of international accomplishments due to the coaching instability, as well as the urgency for Iranian players to seek financial security over playing time. Some examples of this include Alireza Jahanbakhsh taking too big of a step up at Brighton to become their record signing after one good year at AZ Alkmaar, Mehdi Taremi signing for Porto after a show-me season at Rio Ave where he owned part of his transfer rights - only to be benched, and defensive stalwart Morteza Pouraliganji habitually taking the money in China / Qatar over European offers for the past 5 years, etc.

Iran's current hopes for success on the European continent are:
  • A resurgence / rebirth at Brighton for Jahanbakhsh - he was a key player over the festive period in '19-'20 (including a bicycle kick against Chelsea that is without a doubt the pinnacle of Iranian footballing achievement in Europe), but has had a series of muscle injuries and is benched in favor of uninspiring players (to say the least) in Potter's 3-4-2-1 these days
  • Sardar Azmoun progressing to a bigger club than Zenit - though he and Artem Dzyuba have formed an impressive partnership, and he has a linguistic / footballing bond with his Turkmen manager Sergei Semak (Azmoun is from Gonbad Kavus, abutting Turkmenistan in northeast Iran). With the dip in Jahanbakhsh's form, Azmoun is our biggest hope - I think he would do an outstanding job in a physical, Raul Jimenez-type skilled target man role.
  • Mehdi Taremi unseating Moussa Marega for the starting spot as Porto's #9 - Marega has been awful this season, so I'm cautiously optimistic Taremi and his penalty-winning ways will earn him into the first team squad
  • Milad Mohammadi progressing beyond Gent, where he has starred at left back - there was smoke around him moving to Leeds in the summer, but Stuart Dallas has stolen the show there.
  • Alireza Beiranvand playing his way into a starting role at Antwerp - I rate him extremely highly and am surprised he hasn't earned the spot yet, but some obvious bias at play there
  • The Charleroi boys Kaveh Rezaei and Ali Gholizadeh continuing to play regularly and well enough to earn a Ligue 1 / EFL Championship move, though Gholizadeh is rapidly approaching Reza Ghoochannejhad status given he's already 28
  • Saman Ghoddos avoiding eating his way out of top-flight football - he's just transferred to Brentford after serving a 4 month suspension with (now Ligue 2 side) Amiens stemming from a complaint filed by SD Huesca following his transfer from Swedish side Östersund, but he is looking and playing like he's been consuming kabab nonstop for 9 months

Iran lost their matches to Bahrain and Iraq earlier in qualifying, the former being a particularly humiliating 1-0 defeat, the latter a 2-1 heartbreaker with Alaa Abbas scoring in stoppage time to secure the three points for Iraq. There are four matches remaining for qualifying, with the return legs against Bahrain / Iraq as must-wins for Iran to at least achieve 2nd in the group of 5 (along with Hong Kong and Cambodia).

In short, a ton has to go right for Team Melli to turn around and remain a powerhouse in Asia. We were so close to advancing out of the group of death with Portugal, Spain, and Morocco in '18, with payment to the team being withheld all the while due to sanctions. At this point, we are looking unlikely to qualify in '22 barring some unexpected results under Dragan Skočić, in large part due to Wilmots treating Team Melli with the same care as a day-old plate of moules-frites for his disastrous months in chage.

I hope there is an opportunity for Iranian football to progress beyond this point in my lifetime, but I'm not all that optimistic given both the direction the Iranian economy is taking, and the proclivity for diaspora players to turn their back on the national team (looking at you, Daniel Arzani).
Love a solid report from outside of UEFA/CONMEBOL territory.

Does anybody scout the Iranian league or is it a situation where the only way to be seen by bigger leagues is to do well with the national team?
 

PedroSpecialK

Comes at you like a tornado of hair and the NHL sa
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Dec 12, 2004
26,266
Cambridge, MA
Funny you should mention scouting - it's something Wilmots did not do once during his disastrous 6 month tenure. He'd travel to Iran for pre-match trainings with the called up squad and matches, but never once scouted the Persian Gulf Pro League. Thus far, Skočić has shown propensity to actually scout and call up relatively unknown players from the domestic PGPL, and retained assistant coach / Team Melli legend Vahid Hashemian after taking over for Wilmots.

A few domestic players have been stalwarts in the team's midfield, most notably Ehsan Hajsafi (Tractor Sazi), Vahid Amiri (Persepolis), and Mehdi Torabi (had played at Persepolis prior to this year's move to Qatari squad Al-Arabi). A new crop of domestic players is beginning to feature more regularly, including defender Hossein Kanaanizadegan, midfielder Ahmad Nourollahi (both Persepolis) and defensive midfielder Omid Noorafkan (Sepahan), and the majority of Skočić's recent callups for the 2-0 friendly win over Bosnia & Herzegovina were younger players from PGPL.

A few other notables outside PGPL that I did not callout:
  • Forward Karim Ansarifard has had a relatively decorated career, and now plays for his third Greek team in AEK Athens - at age 30, he's nearing the end of his national team career
  • Goalkeeper Amir Abedzadeh has had a successful ~3 year spell at Maritimo in Liga NOS, but I don't see him displacing Beiranvand
  • Centerback Majid Hosseini should be a lock for Team Melli for the next 5+ years - simple game, good in the air, currently playing for Trabzonspor in Turkey but I see a move to Portugal / Netherlands in his future
  • Right back Ramin Rezaeian is a nailed-on starter for Team Melli, having played for the past two years at Qatari club Al-Shahania - where he scored 17 goals in 33 appearances from right back (some James Tavernier-level numbers there). However, when they got relegated in '19-'20, he moved to Al-Duhail.
  • Fullback Sadegh Moharrami is an interesting recent callup from Dinamo Zagreb - still 24 and there could be some talent there, but I don't see him supplanting Rezaiean this cycle

First choice 11 for me (whenever Iran meet Iraq again):

Beiranvand
Rezaeian - Pouraliganji - Hosseini - Mohammadi
Jahanbakhsh - Ezatolahi - Nourollahi - Torabi
Azmoun - Taremi
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
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There's always a certain risk in signing Europeans as players or managers outside of "prestige" countries/confederations. They might have a good resumé and check all the boxes in theory, but you have to do your due diligence to make sure that they are in it for the right reasons and aren't just viewing the job as a low-pressure, low-effort gig with a solid paycheck.

MLS clubs have been burned by this many times. When it works out, it really works out. And when it doesn't, it really doesn't.
 

Senator Donut

post-Domer
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Apr 21, 2010
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Liga MX TV ratings in the US:

View: https://twitter.com/richarddeitsch/status/1334538589737283584



A reliable source who replied to this tweet claimed the América-Chivas game was the highest-rated soccer game in the US all year.
Liga MX matches could probably do even better if the media rights were not so fractured. For example, the first leg of El Súper Clásico is not on the list, because it aired on Telemundo, who have the rights to all Chivas home games. All seven other quarterfinal matches were on Univision networks. Fox Sports has Xolos and Monterrey, plus ESPN Deportes also shows some matches.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
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Jan 10, 2004
20,509
The 718
https://www.theguardian.com/football/2020/sep/16/wigan-in-danger-of-being-wound-up-like-macclesfield-administrators-warn
Wigan administrators are struggling to find a bidder, asking 3.3M (including stadium, training ground and club) which is needed to clear creditors, 2M if you are willing to take a 15 point deduction.

This was a mid-table Championship side last year, a PL team as recently as 2013, and it looks likely that they will cease to exist.
And a FA cup winner in 2013.

This sucks.
 

Zomp

Dope
Dope
Aug 28, 2006
12,875
The Slums of Shaolin
I never got around to starting a United thread this year but I wanted to post on Mino Raiola's comments this morning. He gave an interview today to Tutto Sport with the following quote, "I can say that it is over for Paul Pogba at Manchester United".

Its time for Pogba to leave. For a few reasons, but I actually think it will be addition by subtraction. Its too bad, but he's never gotten to the heights the fanbase hoped he'd get to. He had the presence and ability to really carry the squad over the past few seasons and it just hasn't happened. Its not all his fault. Changing managers didn't help and neither did the style that we played under Jose.

But for his agent to come out and say this when we have the two most important games of the season coming up is the the straw that will break the camel's back. One wonder goal aside over this past weekend doesn't mask the fact that he's been consistently poor this season. I do think he's had a tough recovery with COVID but its all the more reason to keep your mouth shut and play hard. He hasn't done that and now Mino is making sure he leaves on bad terms.

Tactically, I think United will actually be better off without him. To be clear, the World Cup Final Paul Pogba would improve this team immensely, but he he hasn't showed that side of him enough. In Ole's 4-2-3-1, we've looked much better this season when 2 of Mctominay, Fred, and Matic play behind Bruno. In games where we have more possesion, Donny Van De Beek has shown he can play in that 2 and use his creativity to push forward.

Pogba on his day is a brilliant player. It just hasn't worked out. He can go back to Juve, to Real, wherever. I don't even care that the likely scenario is us accepting a bad deal for him and not using the funds to bolster the squad.

This could have been Pogba's team. But its not. It's Brunos.
 

PedroSpecialK

Comes at you like a tornado of hair and the NHL sa
SoSH Member
Dec 12, 2004
26,266
Cambridge, MA
When did they change their name back from Beitar Trump Jerusalem?

I wonder if their supporters will torch the club's offices like they did after signing Dzhabrail Kadiyev and Zaur Sadayev