Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Twitter and professional sport

Twitter and celebrities go hand in hand. Just about anyone who's anyone (including me - @Statto1927) has a Twitter account, tweeting their every move.

Professional sportsmen and women are no exception, and people like me are genuinely interested in hearing things direct from the horses mouth that we might otherwise not get to see or hear.

However, as with all things, there's a fine line which is crossed occasionally, sometimes with catastrophic results. Philip Hughes the Australian cricket opener was reprimanded and banned from tweeting after he announced that he was dropped from the side before it was officially announced.

I follw James Anderson (@JimmyAnderson9), Graham Swann (@Swannyg66), and Tim Bresnan (@timbresnan) amongst some others whose banter is often amusing, sometimes very close to the knuckle, and sometimes just dull.

However, today, one of England cricket's greatest celebrities Kevin Pietersen (@kevinpp24) announced via Twitter that he had been dropped from the England T20 side. Bad enough if he'd done it before any official announcement, but he also used a rather bold expletive to reinforce his unhappiness about it. He also revealed that he was moving to Surrey - perhaps less of a surprise but again prior to any announcement.

The repercussions of this are likely to be that all England cricketers will be banned from using Twitter. That's a shame, but probably predictable if people can't be more professional about how they use the service.

I wouldn't dream of putting myself in the same arean as KP an others (although I have scored a few tons in my time) and anything I tweet is personal or a personal view about things that I think are relevant, interesting or that I have a general opinion on. However, I would not for example tweet about anything specifically to do with my employment or employer (other than I might be having a bad day for example). If I did so, I'd expect to get a quick march down to the bosses office to explain my actions and unprofessional behaviour at best, and a request to pick up my P45 on my way out at worst.

In a black week for cricket with the allegations of spot betting and corrupt Pakistani cricketers, this is the last thing England cricket needed.

KP might be a brilliant cricketer (though sadly out of touch and thus the reason why he was dropped), but a little more thought about what he was doing when he tweeted that wouldn't have gone amiss. On the other hand, if he's free this weekend, mabe he could come and bolster our Tour sqaud for our annual sojourn to Torquay!

Gezza to Hull

So on deadline day we've shipped out Anthony Gerrard to Hull, but no faces in (as far as we know).

The deal for Gerrard, a season long loan does unusually allow him to play against his parent club - interestingly the next match up for the Bluebirds on 11th September. However, this deal also means that Seyi Olifanjana, who's on also on a season long loan the other way, can play against the Tigers in that match, whereas until this deal occurred he wasn't going to be allowed to.

As I've said before, I think Gerrard has been unlucky not to get more of a go at City this term. Something seems to have given as he was the pick of the centre backs last year for me. He has been prone to making a couple of mistakes, but I always felt he was giving 110%. However, I wish him well this season - just not against the Bluebirds on 11th!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Good result. Portsmouth 0-2 City

This was a tough fixture on paper, butt city came away 2-0 winners thanks to an OG and another from Jay Bothroyd. There were plenty of City faithful to see the Bluebirds end the day in second spot on goal difference behind QPR.

Things are looking good for us at the moment apart from that injury to Chops. There's still no news on whether Whittingham is staying or going, and Jonesy is still taking about getting another one or two in. The squad looks strong and I'm quietly confident that if we can hold it all together, this will be our year. BlogBooster-The most productive way for mobile blogging. BlogBooster is a multi-service blog editor for iPhone, Android, WebOs and your desktop

Friday, August 27, 2010

Hurrah for the weekend

It's been one week back at work after my holidays, and it's probably fair to say it hasn't been the best of weeks. Most things that could have gone wrong did so. Technology, that wondrous thing that is supposed to make all our lives easier has caused three major headaches (literally as well as metaphorically) these last five days, and resulted in my week finishing at 10.30pm tonight rather than the envisaged 5pm.

I suppose though it's moments like this where we really earn the corn so to speak. Frankly I could have done without it. At least I've got three days to recover. BlogBooster-The most productive way for mobile blogging. BlogBooster is a multi-service blog editor for iPhone, Android, WebOs and your desktop

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Holiday snaps

Have uploaded my holiday pics to Picasa Web Albums. If you can bear looking through someone else's holidays photo's here's the link to our Pembrokeshire jolly.

New faces for City?

Away from the news of City's demise from the Carling Cup tonight, still no firm news on any more new faces at City.

The rumours continue surrounding the return of City old boy Glenn Loovens though reports suggest he wants to stay at Celtic and fight for his place, despite not appearing to figure too highly in manager Neil Lennon's immediate plans. God knows we need a defender on Loovens stature - both his height and his technical ability. I'm sure Mark Hudson is a lovely chap, but I don't rate him, and though Gabor Gyepes is decent enough, he needs someone big and strong with him. When he played virtually a season with Roger Johnson beside him he was great. I'm also not sure what Gerrard has done to fall out of favour with Dave Jones as he with Gyepes would have been my starting two centre backs this season. Rumours were that he was off to Sheffield Wednesday, though that's been denied by the Owls manager, and he played tonight.

Also tonight I saw a post on Twitter from @cardiffcitymad the well respected Michael "Mad" Morris's Cardiff City Online suggesting a loan move for Wolves Republic of Ireland striker Andy Keogh. You can see in the photo above that he's already practising the "Ayatollah"!

However, given the number of loan signings we currently have I think we can only have one more, so it looks like it would have to be either Loovens or Keogh. For my money (and lets' face it, I give enough of it to Cardiff City every year), I'd rather Loovens, because there's no doubt we need a better central defence, whilst we've got Bothroyd, Bellamy, Burke, Chopra, Whittingham who should all score goals this season.

City out of Beer (sorry Carling) Cup: Peterborough 2-1 City

Posh stuffed us last year at London Road, and they grabbed a later winner to dump us out of the Beer (sorry Carling) Cup tonight.

City, without Craig Bellamy, the injured Michael Chopra and the soon to be a Leeds Utd player (?) Ross McCormack were 1-0 up at half time through Jay Bothroyd, but conceded in the 74th and 88th minutes to crash out.

I know a lot of people don't rate the Beer (sorry Carling) Cup, but it's a money spinner if you stay in and there's silverware. On the flip side, no more distractions until January keeps players fit and focused on the League. Your call.

Given City's history (well as long as I've been watching them), one or more of several things happened at/after half time. Tick as many of the following that apply.
  1. They were complacent (quite probably)
  2. Dave Jones said "Well done lads, lets try and hang on" (we know what happens when they try and do that. Arsenal under George Graham they are not)
  3. Our rubbish defence got found out (yes)
  4. They had a shocking second period due to points 1, 2 and 3 above (often the case when they are leading 1-0 at HT)
  5. They were tired probably from such a long journey on a luxury coach (poor dabs)
  6. They couldn't care less about the Beer (sorry Carling) Cup (well I don't think DJ does anyway - he sees it as a early season training programme to get players match fit)
  7. They decided at half time to concentrate on the League (probably not but it's a good cliché when you've been dumped out of the Beer (sorry Carling) and/or FA Cup
  8. Our rubbish defence got found out....oh, I've done that one. Still worth repeating it.
  9. A poorer team (on paper) upped their game to try and get one over (successfully) on a club that's hogged the limelight in the last week signing a fantastic Premiership quality player who didn't play, and we didn't up our game to match. Oh, that's complacency again. Sorry. No, I'm not.
  10. Our rubbish defence got found out. Have I said that before?
I just feel sorry for the fans that made a long trip and watched us capitulate. And to make it worse, the Jacks came from behind to beat Tranmere.

Still, at least we can concentrate on the League now ;-)

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Swarbrick shocker: City 4-0 Doncaster

This match was all about Craig Bellamy.

Over 24.000 packed into CCS today to see Craig Bellamy, City's new signing strut his stuff, and he didn't disappoint. Donny had the better of the opening half, although City should have had a penalty inside two minutes when Chopra was unceremoniously upended in the visitors penalty area.

Referee ND Swarbrick waved away City appeals and to be absolutely fair, he and his assistants SJ Barrow and ME Weaver had an absolute shocker, missing balls that were out of play on the sidelines, giving throws or balls that were obviously in, and the referee himself failing to punish several studs us tackles from the visitors, Chopra and Bothroyd the main recipients of some terrible tackles especially from Donny's number 5 Wayne Thomas.

Bothroyd it was though who opened the scoring after the ball fell rather fortuitously to him inside the box. 1-0 City at half time and glad to take it after Chopra had limped off after his earlier challenge. The change to 4-5-1 though inspired City and it was no surprise when Bothroyd doubled the score in the second period left unmarked after Bellamy drew defenders to Burkes great cross. Burke then added a third as City began to play ole football, Bellamy's 60 yarder leaving the ginger Scotsman plenty to do but a fine finish ensued.

And to make the day complete Bellamy rasped in a 35 yarder to seal a 4-0 win,. There was even time for Koumas to come off the bench in the final minutes, though how he'll fit into this side will take a braver man than me to predict.

Great win for City, who move 2nd. I predict at this early stage automatic promotion for the Bluebirds - if - we keep out players fit.

Finally, I have it on good authority we'll be welcoming back another City old boy on loan next week - Glenn Loovens from Celtic on loan. Magnifcent.


Thursday, August 19, 2010

Bellers is a Bluebird

A bit late with this post, but I am on holiday!

Following the capture of Jason Koumas (see previous post) on loan, rumours abounded last weekend that Craig Bellamy of Manchester City & Wales was close to signing on loan for City. Having been left out of Man City's Champions League squad, the writing appeared to be on the wall for Bellamy, arguably one of the Premiership's outstanding players last season. Mancini clearly didn't want to flog him to any premiership rivals either, so something had to give. Allegedly several clubs were in the hunt for Bellers, including former employer Celtic, but in the end the lure of playing the majority of his matches in his home city and close to his family who have never moved from the area swung it City's way.

If Koumas was a big signing, this is massive, and a real feather in the cap to the City management team who have pulled this off. If nothing else it'll ramp up the gates at the CCS, but I'm sure too that Bellamy, along with Koumas, Drinkwater and Olifinjana the new signings, will provide City with the player power to mount a serious promotion challenge. I hope so, because now, nothing short of promotion will do/

I'm back of my holiday in time for Saturday's match v Doncaster, and I'm really looking forward to it. It'll be a cracking atmosphere.

Up the City!!!!

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Is Koumas a Bluebird - again?

Reports are coming in that Jason Koumas, of the borough of Wigan is close to returning on loan to Cardiff City.

As is usual at this time as a City supporter, don't think this is a done deal. te transfer embargo placed on us for failure to submit end of year accounts isn't quite resolved (though rumours suggest it has been sorted), and until everything is tickety boo, I for one won't believe anything for certain.

If this is true though, I'd be very happy. Koumas is another of those players who many managers fail to get the best out of, but in his spell with the Bluebirds he looked every inch the class player he undoubtedly is, even at 30. Given a straight choice between him and departed City hero Joe Ledley, frankly I think I'd go for Koumas every time.

Let's hope this is true, and more importantly, let's hope it's sorted in time for Sunday's Championship opener vs the Blades.

Up the City!