WSOTP pod: season 2 episode 5

WSOTP Podcast - Season 2 Episode 5

After taking off last week for the most pointless international break ever and with another full weekend of European club football now under our belts, there was a lot to talk about on Episode 5 of the podcast. So prepare yourself — this will be a long one.

Though we weren’t fans of the break, we did cover the USMNT’s first match of the new World Cup cycle as well as discussed some of the more interesting news that filtered out during the rest of the international break. The Premier League’s return this past weekend also required plenty of discussion, with hardly a dud among the nine matches that took place before we recorded. We also made room for our newest segment, a once-a-fortnight Bundesliga-centric update from our German football correspondent Chris Wieland (@TheSpareWheel). And let’s not forget our regular Winners and Wankers and Jeremy’s Fulham Watch segments, as those were in there too.

As always, if you have any questions or topics you want us to cover on future podcasts, drop us a line at contact[at]wrongsideofthepond[dot]com or tweet us using the links at the bottom of the page.

 

Subscribe to the WSOTP Podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, or search for “Wrong Side of the Pond” in your favorite podcasting app to listen to us on your mobile device!

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WSOTP pod: episode 39

Well, this first season of the Wrong Side of the Pond podcast has been one crazy ride.

WSOTP Podcast - Season 1 Episode 39

on the season finale of the podcasdt, the guys talk city capturing their second title in three years and allow a liverpool fan to eulogize the season.

So on this week’s episode, we look back at our very first predictions at the beginning of the season, and take a team-by-team look at how every club in the Premier League fared this year. We also found time to sing the praises for NBC’s stellar broadcasting efforts this season, review last week’s MLS action and more.

And just in case you’re still in the dark, this week’s episode is actually the grande finale for this first go around. After 39 straight weeks of recording, I’m pretty sure Jeremy and D.J. deserve the break, if for no other reason than to appease their very generous and understanding wives. But worry not, listeners. We’ll undoubtedly be back again for the start of the next European campaign for Season 2 of the WSOTP Pod. Plus, we’re planning on doing a few special edition World Cup episodes in the summer to tide you over — some of which will potentially be recorded live on Fountain Square ahead of our USMNT watch parties! Stay tuned for further details.

So to all of you out there, thanks so much for listening in to our first season and we look forward to talking to you all again next season… cheers!

 

Subscribe to the WSOTP Podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, or search for “Wrong Side of the Pond” in your favorite podcasting app to listen to us on your mobile device!

WSOTP pod: episode 24

WSOTP Podcast - Season 1 Episode 24

phil jones’ face post-atrocious penalty is the perfect visual representation of united’s trash fire of a season.

Break out the champagne WSOTP Pod listeners — for the first time in several weeks, we were actually been able to get the podcast up for its regularly scheduled Tuesday publishing! And in this week’s on time edition, we take a look at the results from last week’s English Cup action and the transfer window — from Manchester United’s continued issues domestically to Juan Mata’s transfer from both the Chelsea and United perspective. We also share our thoughts on American soccer semantic snobbery, and preview this week’s hectic Premier League schedule. We even find time to talk about Ron Artest… but I’ll leave it to you to either listen or guess how we fit him into the discussion.

Subscribe to the WSOTP Podcast on iTunes or Stitcher, or search for “Wrong Side of the Pond” in your favorite podcasting app to listen to us on your mobile device!

WSOTP pod: episode 23

eto’o finding his scoring boots is just one of the many topics discussed on this week’s podcast.

The latest episode of the Wrong Side of the Pond Podcast – slightly delayed as D.J. continues to man the editing while Jeremy’s computer is out of commission — is finally available for our listening enjoyment. It worked out well, as it allowed the guys ample time to reflect upon an interesting weekend full of Eto’o goals, missed calls and continued Manchester United misery. In addition to the normal Premier League action run down, the guys also dip their toes into the MLS SuperDraft, the latest national soccer broadcasting news and ugly kits and crests.

Subscribe to the WSOTPpod on iTunes or Stitcher.

WSOTP pod: episode 2

WSOTP Pod: Season 1 Episode 2

Southampton's Rickie Lambert

southampton’s rickie lambert probably had a better week than you.

So you’re back for more, eh? Delayed a day so we could squeeze in some discussion on Manchester City-Newcastle, Jeremy and D.J. will give you a full rundown on the opening weekend of the Premier League season. Was Jeremy was impressed with Mourinho’s second debut? Was D.J. satisfied with a retooled Spurs side? In addition to those thoughts, you can expect looks at Rickie Lambert’s extraordinary week, the USMNT’s comeback against Bosnia, a round up of MLS action, a quick review of the Football Factory at Legend’s in the WSOTP Soccer Pub highlight and much more. And this time, you get it all packaged in a slightly shorter package.

ten words or less #72

What a week it was for football.

it was such a scintillating week of soccer that it literally caused the crew’s scoreboard to burst into flames.

Spain, long the kings of European club and international soccer, was humbled over the course of two nights in Germany. The shock waves of the thorough beatings received by Barcelona and Real Madrid are still reverberating a week later as we head into the return ties in Spain. Meanwhile, the Premier League saw not only a champion named, but also two sides doomed to relegation. The race for the top four in England also remains interesting, with Spurs and Arsenal seemingly trying to trip out of each others’ way nail down the last slot. The Columbus Crew’s scoreboard caught on fire shortly before its team did in a 3 goal victory over DC United for the Black and Gold. And the biggest news? scored a hat trick in my coed indoor match midweek. Earth-shattering stuff, right?

So with all of the madness that went down last week, it would have been easy to miss an interesting story or two along the way. As we edge our way towards yet another week guaranteed to be full of even more twists and turns, have a read through some of the best content I gleaned from the web over the last week that might have gone under the radar.

An infographic explaining the NASL’s new Indy Eleven‘s name. – indyeleven.com

One small step for Pittsburgh, one giant leap for USSoccer. – theshinguardian.com

Meanwhile in Sweden, they’re paving over pitches. – whoateallthepies.tv

So Blackburn should be in the Champions League final, right? – espnfc.com

My future child will have a ball in its crib. – si.com

Honestly, I’d have a hard time fairly judging a Gooner. – guardian.co.uk

Nike have something crazy in store for us. – soccerbible.com

Bravo, Dirty Tackle: a marvelous bit on the Suárez bite. – dirtytackle.net

College athletics losing it’s luster… and not just in soccer. – sbnation.com

Though he’s bat shit crazy these days, nothing but respect. – youtube.com

pic of the week 4/8-4/14

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Newcastle Horse Puncher

In a weekend where fan hooliganism made headlines on both sides of the pond, this week’s not-exactly-HD  “Pic of the Week” comes to us from the aftermath of the Tyne-Wear Derby in Newcastle. Northeastern rivals Sunderland traveled to Newcastle to face the Magpies at St. James Park, and came out of the match surprise 3-0 winners. Unsurprisingly, this didn’t sit well with home support, who then spilled into the street surrounding the stadium and threw a temper tantrum of epic proportions.

The highlight of the scenery captured though has to be footage of the man above, who thought it best to not only provoke the policemen attempting to keep the peace… but also punch one of their horses in the face. Caught on camera several times before obscuring his face with his scarf, the lug wasn’t exactly able to land a solid blow to the equestrian guardian before gesturing “Come at me, bro” several times and then being tackled by the police. However, that likely won’t stop him from having picketers from PETA marching outside his house, or avoid a date with the Newcastle magistrate sometime in the next fortnight.

And for those animal-friendly readers concerned about the horse? Don’t worry, “Bud” as he’s called, has recovered well and will live to face drunken Geordies another day.

pic of the week 3/25-3/31

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Paulo Di Canio Fascist Salute

Though I’m a few days late in getting last week’s Pic of the Week up on the blog, you might be even more confused that to the picture I’ve selected because it most certainly wasn’t taken last week. In fact, the picture above was taken in 2006 during one of Paolo Di Canio’s final matches with Lazio before he retired. So why, then, did I pick this as this week’s picture?

Di Canio, a self-professed Fascist sympathizer, was named the successor to Martin O’Neil as manager at Sunderland at the weekend. And though the Italian lightening rod earned the opportunity to try to save the Black Cats from relegation thanks to a very fruitful two year spell in charge at League One Swindon Town, most of the rhetoric surrounding his appointment has concerned this six year old picture. Though a few of the punditry chosen to overlook the political leanings of a potentially very talented manager and debate his merits as as a manager — a novel idea, right? — many have decided to attack Sunderland and Di Canio for the decision by calling them “racists” and “unethical”. And while Paolo can be accused of having a fiery personality and is probably guilty of some poor decision-making in his past, that doesn’t mean he’s not qualified for the job.  By all accounts, he’s a very intelligent man and a promising managerial talent.

So my selection for this week’s Pic of the Week is meant to convey this simple message: let’s let current news and future results dictate our perceptions of someone, not their past indiscretions. Otherwise, let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

crisis management

Chelsea Fans Want Rafa Out

if you’ve only been in the job for a few days, and fans are already holding up signs like these… you might just find yourself in a managerial crisis.

The midpoint of the European season is often one of the most jam-packed, chaotic and turbulent portions of the yearly footballing calendar. Between the January transfer window, scheduling congestion between all of the major competitions — especially in England where there is not a winter break — and under performing clubs starting to realize that there’s hardly any time to left in the season to really turn their seasons around, the pressure mounting on some clubs and their managers often reaches a fever pitch.

Of course, the media love this time of year for just those reasons. It allows them the ability to not only fabricate report on stories concerning transfer speculation, but also pounce all over clubs who’s managers they feel aren’t able to control the crisis currently enveloping their clubs. Determining whether the agendas those media types are pushing are genuinely those of club’s or their fans’, however, can be a very difficult task. How are we, as media consumers, supposed to really know what’s going on?

Well, we can’t. But it sure can be fun to speculate. So with that in mind, below are listed five managers that the media have deemed to be currently in the hot seat at their respective clubs. For each, we’ll attempt to sift through all of the BS surrounding their situations, and predict a fate for each of these under pressure managers.

Arsene Wenger (Arsenal)

Arsenal's Arsene Wenger

wenger certainly won’t ever admit he’s feeling the pressure, but i think we can all tell he is.

The Situation: Of all the managers that the media are reporting to be in troubled situations at their clubs, as a Spurs supporter, Wenger’s crisis is the one in which I take the most joy. And though the “Professor” has been able to perform admirably on his shoestring transfer budget over the last few years, eight years without a major trophy appears to have rubbed the Gunners’ faithful the wrong way. Sure, sporadic calls for his head echoed around the Emirates in recent seasons, but those calls have grown louder and louder as time has worn on. With just one win in their last four, the discontent within their ranks finally boiled over in last weekend’s loss to Swansea with chants of “You don’t know what you’re doing!” audible even through the television. Wenger’s response? Despite languishing all the way down in 10th in the league table: “This club is in fantastic shape.” Delusional, much?

Crisis Level: 4 out of 10

Predicted Outcome: Despite the malcontent amongst their fans, Arsenal will at least stick with Wenger through the end of the year. Probably longer. Because while the fans are in an uproar, the club’s administration are perfectly content to keep selling off their best players and turning a profit… with or without trophies.

Carlo Ancelotti (Paris Saint-Germain)

“wait, you say that i am the one under pressure?”

The Situation: Despite outspending everyone in France by a country mile over the last few seasons, PSG and Ancelotti currently find themselves sitting second in the Ligue 1 table and facing mounting pressure. Big money signing and footballing anti-hero Zlatan Imbrahimović has come good for the Parisians, but the fact that he accounts for an astounding 54% of their goal tally in the league is immensely troubling for a side that also boasts attacking talents like Ezequiel Lavezzi, Maxwell and Javier Pastore. But as you might predict, Carlo has barely arched his super brow at the issue. “Things are going to change, because they’re not normal right now. The league isn’t finished. We’ll be competitive soon.”

Crisis Level: 5 out of 10

Predicted Outcome: With an ownership group that’s proven quick to pull the trigger on firing a coach (just ask Antoine Kombouaré), and oodles of money to attract a top manager, Ancelotti shouldn’t feel that comfortable at the moment. If results remain stagnant, expect PSG to make a change.

Martin O’Neill (Sunderland)

Sunderland's Martin O'Neill

considering his sunderland side’s current form, martin is justified in having that nervous look on his face

The Situation: For a man known for getting the most out of clubs without a lot of financial backing, O’Neill hasn’t been able to reproduce his successes at Leicester City, Celtic and Aston Villa at the Stadium of Light. And with one less win in his first 24 matches in charge than his predecessor Steve Bruce had in the same span, not to mention the Black Cats currently sitting in the relegation zone, pressure must surely be mounting for the club to dispatch Northern Irishman. With just one win in their last 10 outings, time could be running out for O’Neill to save his hide. And a general rule of thumb is that any time you have to refute rumors of your own resignation, things aren’t going very well for you.

Crisis Level: 8 out of 10

Predicted Outcome: Sunderland’s ownership find themselves in a precarious situation: while O’Neill isn’t producing the desired results, who exactly are they going to replace him with? There aren’t exactly a number of managers in the market that have experience in rescuing clubs embroiled in relegation scraps. Mark Hughes is available, but he seems more apt to placing clubs in relegation battles than he is at getting clubs out of them. I’d doubt they would fancy another round of Roy Keane. And unfortunately, Roberto Di Matteo seems out of their reach. So with options limited, it seems Sunderland might just be stuck with O’Neill for the time being.

José Mourinho (Real Madrid)

Real Madrid's Jose Mourinho

is mourinho feeling madrid burnout?

The Situation: The Bernabéu is a tough office environment, even for a manager known for his mental fortitude like the Special One. Not only are Real Madrid’s fans fickle and demanding, but the club’s history tells us their board and presidents are too. If you thought sacking managers after winning the Champions League was something invented by Roman Abramovich, Real were at it a decade before the revolving door was installed at Stamford Bridge. And with José’s men already 11 points adrift of bitter rivals Barcelona, pressure is mounting on the Portuguese manager’s shoulders.

Crisis Level: 4 out of 10

Predicted Outcome: While winning the league and maintaining pace with their Catalunyan foes is important, the reason why Mourinho was brought it was to help Madrid win their long-sought 10th European crown. And while doing so would most certainly save his job, the odd thing is that he’s likely to leave even if he does win his third European Cup… on his own accord. Just as he did at Porto and Inter, José would probably fancy going out on top. But should he not achieve that goal, he’ll probably abort this project and move on to another, too.

Rafa Benítez (Chelsea)

Chelsea's Rafa Benitez

one look at rafa’s face, and you can tell he knows his days at chelsea are numbered.

The Situation: I saw a quote the other day describing the managerial situation at Chelsea that was pretty interesting. Five managers have won the Champions League in the last six years: Chelsea have fired three of them (Mourinho, Ancelotti and Di Matteo), and the other two (Ferguson and Guardiola) don’t want to manager for them. Benítez, a man who’s won one himself, had to have known that going in, right? And he also had to have known that the Chelsea fans hated him. And with this expensively assembled Chelsea side struggling to handle the high expectations being placed on them, Rafa had to have known the timing was bad, too. I get that a man may like a challenge, but at the same time, taking over the reigns at this point in Chelsea’s chaotic history seemed more like a suicide mission.

Crisis Level: 7 out of 10

Predicted Outcome: This one is the easiest outcome to predict by a landslide. Abramovich will fire Benítez. When that will happen is little less easy to predict, but knowing how fickle and trigger happy their Russian oligarch is, another loss for the Blues could just do the trick. But let’s be clear… it is going to happen. Just give it time.

ten words or less #56

Wrong Side of the Pond's Subbuteo for The Football Attic

feeling important these days, thanks to the boys over at the football attic taking a fancy to the subbuteo figure i submitted their “league of blogs” project.

The Euros are over, thus ending a three-week stretch where I’ve felt like I have been drowning in football. I mean, I’ve been seeing matches when I sleep… far more than normal, at least. I needed a break, which is something I never thought I’d say about the game. But the headlines just keep rolling out, as if I had forgotten that the world of soccer never sleeps, takes breaks, or allows me to catch up with the rest of my life.

I mean just some of the headlines that caught my attention, and probably deserve an article of their own. Thanks to an epic final, Spain have officially entered G.O.A.T. territory. Transfer madness is in full swing: big names already on the move, others look to be doing so soon, and – GHASP!!! — Spurs are even getting in on some early action.

So as I put the finishing touches on about four different articles, I figured I could pacify you readers with another edition of TWOL. And if that sounds like a raw deal to you, I’m sorry… but you’re going to need to deal with it.

I made the Football Attics League of Blogs top 3! – twitter.com

Ever wonder how MLS sides utilize statistical analysis? – mlssoccer.com

Brazilian side Vitoria have a bloody brilliant kit promotion. Literally. – 101greatgoals.com

Who wouldn’t watch a late night TV hosted by Crouchy? – givemefootball.com

Why the international game lags tactically behind the club game. – newstatesman.com

Spanish B sides up for promotion are causing massive issues. – inbedwithmaradona.com

If all holds true, the Colorado Rapids are disgraceful. – prostamerika.com

Everything you wanted to know more about Italy’s kit font. – designboom.com

Never underestimate the combined power of the internet and idiots. – dirtytackle.net

Gyan is a text book case for “lack of ambition”. – theoriginalwinger.com