Premier League transfers after Brexit

The UK left the EU at the end of 2020 and with the end of freedom of movement came a new regime for football transfers with players coming from an EU country now requiring a Governing Body Endorsement (GBE) to be able to play in the UK. The January transfer window was generally quiet with not much money being spent (impact of Covid has perhaps some responsibility for that) but the only comments I can find regarding the new system from a prominent manager came from Sam Allardyce. The West Brom head coach made comments early in the window that the new system was making it harder for him. On January 4th, he told reporters…

Sam Allardyce. [Image from the Premier League].

‘I have found three players already who were capable of coming here and they’re not allowed. It’s a shame. Due to the new regulations in terms of the permit they were unable to come to this country, whereas (previously) they would have done. I have to look at that and think ‘can he qualify?’ read more

January Transfer Window 2017: NUFC

The January Transfer Window. It comes and goes every year, Jim White get his yellow tie out and while some managers love and loath it, it is an opportunity to strengthen their squads. Newcastle United did not get that memo.

It is thought Rafa Benitez desired to bring in a central midfielder and a winger to strengthen his side for the Championship run-in. Neither came and the manager in charge of ‘all footballing matters’ does not know what happened. Newcastle recruited no new faces in an underwhelming January window but then that does not come as a surprise. However, six faces left the club on loan. read more

NUFC EFL Championship Season 2016/17: December

It may now be 2017 but we had to get through December first. What’s not to like about December hey? Sure, the nights are colder and longer but there’s the joys of counting down to a New Year as well as the giving and receiving of gifts from friends and family under the guise of the big fat man with the long white beard. The day itself was saddened as the world lost George Michael and then days later with one of the most recognisable faces from one of my favourite film franchises in Carrie Fisher. May they Rest In Peace. However, life goes on and so does Football which brings me to…

10 Developments in Football: December 2016
  1. uefa_champions_league_logo_2The Champions League Group Stages came to a close in December with Leicester City, Manchester City and Arsenal progressing to the knockout stages while Tottenham Hotspur fell into the Europa League after finishing 3rd in their group, a position secured by a 3-1 win over CSKA Moscow.
  2. Arsenal’s reward for eventually topping a Champions League group was the daunting tie of Bayern Munich (not much luck there) after PSG were held to a 2-2 draw by Ludogorets (their reward was a tie against Barcelona). Meanwhile, Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City were drawn against AS Monaco while Leicester City paired with Sevilla.
  3. Southampton fell out of the Europa League on away goals in the Group Stage as a 1-1 draw at home against Hapoel Beer Sheva FC saw the visitors progress in 2nd.
  4. Manchester United progressed with a 2-0 win over FC Zorya Luhansk and will face St Etienne in the Round of 32; Tottenham face KRC Genk.
  5. Cristiano Ronaldo won the Ballon d'Or for the fourth time in 2016 and also helped Zinedine Zidane's Real Madrid win the FIFA Club World Cup [Image from Sky Sports]
    Cristiano Ronaldo won the Ballon d’Or for the fourth time in 2016 and also helped Zinedine Zidane’s Real Madrid win the FIFA Club World Cup [Image from Sky Sports]

    December also marks the awarding of the Ballon d’Or to the best player of the year and for 2016 it went to Cristiano Ronaldo who won the award for the fourth time.

  6. That wasn’t all Ronaldo won in December as he helped himself to a hat-trick as Real Madrid needed extra time in Yokohama to defeat Kashima Antlers 4-2 to secure their second FIFA Club World Cup.
  7. Club Badge : 2004 - presentChelsea finished 2016 top of the Premier League after their 4-2 win over Stoke City at Stamford Bridge extending their winning run to an equalling record of successive wins in a single Premier League season; 13.
  8. Five managers lost their jobs in December with the oddest perhaps being the dismissal of Gary Rowett by Birmingham City to replace him with Gianfranco Zola. In the Premier League, Swansea City became the first club to look for their third manager after partaking company with Bob Bradley having only been in charge for 85 days. Elsewhere, the man who blames anyone but himself and that cringeworthy dance at Wembley, Alan Pardew was sacked by Crystal Palace.
  9. Carlos Tevez was one of the latest to join Chinese football [Image from The Telegraph]
    Carlos Tevez was one of the latest to join Chinese football [Image from The Telegraph]

    The increasing financial clout of the Chinese Super League surprised again after Brazilian midfielder Oscar left Chelsea for the league and was swiftly followed by Carlos Tevez.

  10. Football was also given some space in the Queens New Years Honours list which was released on New Year’s Eve: Wales and Northern Ireland managers Chris Coleman and Michael O’Neill were both recognised.
Managerial departures in English football in December 2016
Managerial departures in English football in December 2016
Managerial departures in English football in December 2016
Breakdown of Managerial departures in English football during the 2016/17 season to the end of December by the top four divisions

Newcastle United News: December

Assistant coach Ian Cathro left Newcastle to manage SPL side Hearts [Image from Sky Sports]
Assistant coach Ian Cathro left Newcastle to manage SPL side Hearts [Image from Sky Sports]

Cath be gone: Apologies for the awkward subheading but Newcastle United had one departure in January in the form of Ian Cathro. The well-established catch was the only survivor of Steve McLaren’s First team coaching set up under Rafa Benitez but the lure of a management role was too much for the Spaniard to turn down. He departed to manage SPL side Hearts to replace Robbie Nielson who departed for MK Dons. The 30-year-old’s first game in charge of the Tynecastle club was a game with Rangers. He left with Rafa Benitez’s best wishes stating, ‘When a coach has the opportunity and the desire to progress his career in management, it is always very important to allow them the freedom to move on and develop themselves.’. read more

NUFC EFL Championship season 2016/17: October

The leaves have been turning brown, the nights are getting longer and colder, the kids have had their Autumn half-term while the ghosts and ghouls have been out for Halloween! And that’s without Chris samara’s fashion sense! In English football, the league and cup competitions are in full flow with early promotion and relegation candidates appearing across all three divisions of the Football league. All the while, the national side has been without a permanent manager.

October 2016: 10 things in October

  • The managerial sack race picked up with 8 casualties over the top 4 divisions of English football
  • Gareth Southgate began his spell as Interim England Head Coach with an unconvincing 2-0 win at Wembley over Malta before taking a dull 0-0 draw away in Slovenia.
  • Wales thought to a credible 2-2 draw in Austria but was followed up with another draw as Georgia held Wales to 1-1 draw in Cardiff
  • Martin O’Neill’s Republic of Ireland defeated Georgia 1-0 before defeating Moldova 3-1 to go joint top of Group D
  • Northern Ireland defeated minnows San Marino 4-0 before falling to a 2-0 away defeat to reigning World Champions Germany
  • Scotland scraped a 1-1 draw at home to Lithuania after scoring a late equaliser before Slovakia destroyed them in a 3-0 win.
  • Jose Mourinho made his first return to Stamford Bridge after his sacking by Chelsea last season and his first visit as a rival Premier League manager but his Manchester United side was blown away in a 4-0 defeat.
  • Meanwhile, Diego Costa had a strop with manager Antonio Conte
  • Pep Guardiola overcame his worst run of form in his managerial career with a 4-0 win at West Brom after 6 games without a win against Celtic, Tottenham Hotspur, Everton, Barcelona, Southampton and Manchester United.
  • Sunderland were still yet to win a game in the league under David Moyes and became the first team in Premier League history to win in one of their first 10 games
  • At Arsenal, Arsene Wenger celebrated 20 years at Arsenal.

Newcastle United’s October

What a month it was for Newcastle United! No upheaval during the International break as has been the case at times under the ownership of Mike Ashley and for the first time this season; a 100% win record in all competitions. 6 games, 6 wins and 17 goals scored with only 2 conceded as well as a Quarter Final appearance in the bag! The feel good factor is certainly back now! read more

NUFC 2016/17 Championship Season: August

The football season is back in full swing The Premier League has started up again, the British teams know who they will be facing in Europe again, Big Sam has had his first game as England manager and Jeff Stelling is already sick of the sight of Bianca Westwood after her excellent reporting on Hartlepool United’s 6-1 capitulation at Stevenage. For anyone who missed the latter and would like laugh here’s a link.

Meanwhile, my beloved Newcastle United readjusted to life back in the Championship after relegation from the Premier League in May. The purpose of this series of posts is to provide my thoughts on developments at Newcastle during the season including match reports, some juicy stats, transfer updates, my hero and zeros of the month before looking at the month ahead. But first…. read more

NUFC English Championship 2016/17 season preview

Football is back and so will this man on to our TV screens! [image from http://www.skysports.com/football/news/11095/10193888/watch-best-of-soccer-saturday]

Well, it’s that time of year again folks! It’s August and the football season will be back soon meaning the delights of live matches every weekend; Jeff Stelling and the boys on Gillette Soccer Saturday; Gary Lineker hosting Match of the Day (get your Y-fronts ready Gary!) and Chris Kamara with his odd expressions like ‘fighting like beavers’ and will he miss a red card again? There is also the much anticipated reuniting of the Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola rivalry at Manchester United and Manchester City respectively while Leicester City come into the season as defending champions! Who would have thought that 12 months ago? But, alas Newcastle United will be starting their season one week earlier; the Friday night kick-off at Craven Cottage to face Fulham in the Sky Bet Championship.

sky-bet-championship-logo-8x6549-3148790_613x460 read more