Monday, 24 January 2011

Is it time for women officials in top flight football?

Can they run they line? Can the referee a top flight game? Are they any better or worse than male referees? Or should they stick with the female version of the game? Richard Keys & Andy Gray have once again brought this issue in to football. Here are a few for’s and against women officials.

The Pro’s

Women have become part of modern day football. That is a fact. At all levels they plan the game and in some cases they run the show, for example Karen Brady.

They now attend more games than they use to. You see them in the crowds, mainly in the home end sitting down not signing but they’re still there.

There’s no reason to say they don’t know the rules of the game, especially the offside rule as its now become very, very vague to what it actually is!

As long as their adequate and have the ability to do the job properly and fairly surely that’s all that matters.
Could this be the key that brings a bit more respect in to the game of football?

The Con’s

Can the female officials take the abuse? Fans up and down the country give all sorts of stick and abuse to the officials when they think they have got a decision wrong. How would a female feel if they had 30,000 fans screaming at them? Is it worth it?

Can they keep up with the pace of a top flight footballer? Walcott, Lennon, Bale and Rooney all are lighting quick and offside’s could be down to millimetres, can females keep up with the pace with a fully grown professional footballer or with an up-coming youngest like Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain or Conor Wickham?

Is professional football a male sport that doesn’t need to be politically correct?

Will a modern day footballer actually listen and respect a female official?

Can it really work? Or does football need to start to use technology to help officials in the game already?

It’s a very interesting subject but I don’t know what the correct answer is. It will be interesting though to see what happens with Richard Keys and Andy Gray at Sky in the end.

Friday, 14 January 2011

My weekend picks

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Chelsea v Blackburn - Chelsea Win
Man City v Wolverhampton - Man City Win
Stoke v Bolton - Stoke Win
West Brom v Blackpool - Blackpool Win
Wigan v Fulham-
West Ham v Arsenal -
Arsenal Win

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Birmingham v Aston Villa - Birmingham Win
Sunderland v Newcastle -
Sunderland Win
Liverpool v Everton - Draw
Tottenham v Man Utd -
Man United Win

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

2011 is here & Man United lead the way (Just)!

AS we welcome a new year we could be witnessing the best run in to a Premier League title race for many a year. Manchester United currently sit top of the table, still unbeaten in the league but have struggled away from home. They have only picked up two wins on their travels this season which is poor for any United team. Rooney finally scored his first goal in open play for The Reds since March 2010! at West Brom on New Year’s Day. So hopefully with him slowly getting back to top form United can look to improve what has been an unimpressive start to a season. Remember though they do tend to kick in to top gear come late January.

The noisy neighbours City sit in second, and have shown that their true title contenders this season. I predicted they would finish third, but with Tevez leading the frontline they have done better than I thought. I expect them to buy again in January and they should finish in the top four, but where depends on how City go in the second half of the season. The pressure could get to them, the expectation from the owners and some fans could be a little too much. They still have a massive squad with a lot of players warming the training ground let alone the bench. This could cause friction in the camp. However it could swing the other way, Tevez, Johnson, Silva and even Balotelli could all become happy families and do the unthinkable and win the Premier League.

Arsenal are once again in the mix, they look on course to get to the Carling Cup final with a easy draw, but can they do it in the league. Nasri has been the top man this season he has scored, created and shown what a good player he has become where Cesc has been slightly quiet Nasri has taken on leadership. Arsenal now must use all the experience they have to go all the way this season. Too many times the gunners have faulted come March time, but face a big test tomorrow night when Man City comes to town. If they can beat City after their triumph over Chelsea, Arsenal could look end their 5 year spell without a major honour.

Tottenham are in the final Champions League spot and to be far they deserve it. Their approach to the game of all out has worked so far this season. Their performance in the group stages of the Champions League has been their highlight of the season along with their win at Arsenal. I don’t think they will win the league and this is down to their all out attacking tactics you have to keep clean sheets at the top level and Spurs struggle to do that. Also if they do progress in Europe it could also dent their title credentials, they won’t be use to playing so many games a week come the later part of the season how they take to it will be interesting viewing for every Spurs fan.

The other end of the table it’s tight as only four points separate bottom from 13th. West Ham where bottom at Xmas but could get out of trouble after recently picking up form. Surprisingly Fulham & Birmingham find themselves in the bottom three, after both teams had good seasons last year. It’s hard to call who will go down as there’s a lot of football still to play.
Looking at the Championship quickly it’s not as clear as it was a few weeks back. QPR are still top but a slight dip in form has given the chasing pack a chance to catch up. Norwich City have taken full advantage and now sit second. Cardiff City have slipped down to 5th and Swansea, Leeds and Watford complete the top 6. With the Championship as we all know if you put a run together and you will be up there, so it’s still all to play for. I will put my neck out on the line and say QPR will hold on just about and get promoted, along with Leeds and Norwich City. I hope!!
Sean Simara