link log

Thursday, September 28, 2006


Crooked Dealings

Well, there was the one post in between. Straight to it then, here are the teams:

Garth Crooks' Team | Prolix's Team

A decent enough team this week from Garth Crooks.

Let's start at the back; it's a good place to start. I selected Kirkland ahead of Cech in goal. The Chelsea keeper wasn't exactly overworked, though he certainly did all that was asked of him, Kirkland on the other hand was kept fairly busy by an unfortunate Watford (the same as every game, poor Hornets) and impressed once again.

Formation wise - Crooks has opted for two banks of four and two up top, I've mixed things up and gone with an extremely attacking 3-4-3 formation. We both selected Micah Richards and William Gallas at the back, which is testament to the quality of their weekend performances. Garth also chose Djourou and Ferreira in his defence where as I plumped for Reading's Ingimarsson. As with Cech in goal, I felt that Fulham and Sheffield United didn't provide much of a challenge for the duo who despite playing perfectly well, weren't ever really tested - hence the selection of Ingimarsson, who certainly was tested! The Reading man was a rock as United piled on the pressure in Saturday's game.

With the exception of Reading's Korean winger - Ki-Hyeon, Garth and my midfields are completely different. Whilst he chose Alonso and Makele in the middle of the park, I opted for Lampard and Parker. All four of these players had good weekends and frankly, there isn't much between them. Parker ran the show for Newcastle against Everton (though I think Garth's team only selects from the Saturday games) and Lampard's two goals again showed his uncanny ability to find the net. Out wide, I was fed up with choosing Ronaldo every week so opted for the fleet footed Gabriel Agbonlahor who has been a revelation for Martin O'Neil.

We both chose Kuyt and Samaras in our front lines but I also included the mercurial Henry who finally seems to be coming in to the form we all expect of him.

My formation admittedly looks distinctly unbalanced, the reasoning behind it being I couldn't decide between the three strikers and was struggling for four outstanding defensive performances. I think Agbonlahor has shown enough to be considered a winger of note rather than merely a quick striker whilst Parker and Lampard should be more than capable of running midfield together - though haven't we said that about Lampard and Gerrard?

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Wednesday, September 27, 2006


Express delivery #0348

Quite rightly, the frontpages this morning are all covering the major story of Blair's dazzling final Labour Conference speech as leader:

All apart from one that is:

Wot, no Diana news?

Credit to SkyNews for the images.


Monday, September 25, 2006


Michael 'Thumbs' Brown

I know it's usually 'fingers'...

Michael Brown was sent to jail for two years today. The Liberal Democrat donor (to the tune of 2.4 million pounds) was found guilty of "very deliberate and pointed" dishonesty.

All I can think of though, when I see this picture:

Is how much his head looks like assorted facial features stuck on a big pink thumb - in case you don't believe me, I've made a mock up below:

Now. Tell me I'm wrong...

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Tuesday, September 19, 2006


Team of the week

It would be a good idea if I blogged about non-football related topics between these Garth Crooks posts. I should probably think about that. In the meantime, here is the latest offering:

Garth Crooks' Team | Prolix's Team

Mr Crooks' team this week is (like last week) a fairly solid selection, I have a few differences of opinion though, as you can see. We both selected the crazy German in goal, his stunning reflex save from Solksjaer and less aesthetically stunning but exceptionally bold, full-facial (that should bring my hits via google searches up) save clearly won us both over.

As is fast becoming the standard, both Campbell (another Pompey cleansheet) and Woodgate get the nod in defence along with determined new boy, Gallas. This is where the first difference comes in; Crooks' opted for a rigid 4-4-2 formation whilst I chose a 3-5-2, this enabled me to include an extra midfielder - the area I considered to contain the best performers of the weekend. My extra man was Joey Barton in a holding role, ahead of Crooks' choice of Pascal Chimbonda at fullback. From what I saw of Spurs, Chimbonda didn't have a particularly outstanding game, Barton on the other hand was at his dynamic best and could have had a hatrick.

Fabregas and Scharner were impossible to leave out based on their weekend showings and as such both Garth and myself included them in central roles. While we both also selected the ex-Wolves man Ki-Hyeon, we had dissimilar taste when it came to the left wing - I went for the exciting Pedersen (another cracking goal, ran City ragged) whereas Garth opted for the admittedly not unimpressive Duff.

As with the midfield, Drogba was essential after a brilliant goal and all-round performance, I felt that the rapid Martins (100m in under 11 seconds apparently) did more to impress than the equally pacy Johnson however. Whilst Johnson was lively and hardworking, he should have perhaps scored more than his one goal (which itself was a rebound). Martins put on a great display, took his goal well and proved the doubters wrong. Besides, Johnson was in last week's team and I don't want to jinx him.

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Thursday, September 14, 2006


Too many Crooks

As threatened - "I might make this a regular feature" - I've once again felt compelled to highlight the inadequacies of Garth Crooks' Team of the Week. Team selections as below:

Garth Crooks' Team | Prolix's Team

So, Crooks' has gone with a 4-4-2 diamond formation where as I have opted for a 3-5-2. Tactically, Garth has improved on his efforts from last week, although frankly, it would have been quite some feat to make a selection any worse. His use of Parker as a defensive midfielder is questionable, I see Parker as more of a box to box player than a Makelele type. Football commentators seem unaware that Tim Cahill is often very ineffective in a 4-4-2 - hence his flourishing in the 4-5-1 system playing behind Johnson recently. As for the playing the aging and inappropriately named Gary Speed on the flank, well...

On an individual basis, I can see why he went with the Middlesborough keeper in goal but for me, Friedel's two penalty saves (amongst others of course) were more notable than a decent performance from Schwarzer against lucklustre Arsenal. We both opted for the impressive Campbell and Woodgate at the back but I added Lescott who was imperious and committed against Liverpool in his first Merseyside derby. Garth chose both Arsenal wingbacks, I found this slightly strange considering the iffy performance that the team put in.

Whilst both Crooks' and myself selected Parker and Cahill in the middle of the park, we differed wildly with the remaining players. I chose the revitalized Giggs ahead of Ronaldo out wide, Giggs sidestepped the player of the month curse and had yet another inspired game, even chipping in with a crafty headed goal. I played Carsley as the defensive midfielder in my formation, Lee wasn't even an option in the team of the week selections (hence his starred shirt), I find this astonishing - he effectively marshalled Xabi Alonso out of the game and had a hand in all three Everton goals. Our last difference of opinion saw me opt for young Morrison ahead of old Speed, not quite sure what Speed offered apart from his 94th minute penalty - Bolton were dire and one point would have flattered them, let alone all three. Morrison, on the other hand looked lively against Arsenal and took his chance well. We both chose to play Johnson and McBride as our two strikers.

See you next week.

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Saturday, September 09, 2006


I'll keep this brief

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Sunday, September 03, 2006


He doesn't look a thing like Jesus

The Killers new album - Sam's Town, is set for release on the 3rd of October. I was quite a fan of their debut album, Hot Fuss (until it got played to death by just about everyone) and as such was already looking forward to the new material. That's before the rumours started breaking about the follow-up being a major change of style, then I was really looking forward to it.

Where as Hot Fuss was largely Vegas inspired, sleazy synth orientated, post-punk pop, the rumours suggest that Sam's Town was inspired by Springsteen and feature a more rags to riches narrative than err, just the riches. As a huge fan of the Boss, this caused me to feel both intruiged and apprehensive. The lead single will be When You Were Young (which you can download courtesy of Musikoon - here), straight away you can understand these Springsteen comparisons - particularly so Born to Run and the synthy Glory Days, Dancing in the Dark etc... The drums are classic pounding Springsteen and Flowers' lyrics have taken on a Boss like slant, especially so in the lines:
"We're burning down the highway skyline, on the back of a hurricane,
That started turning, when you were young"
There you have a speeding vehicle reference, "getting out of this city" escapism and a rose tinted vision of lost youth - all classic Springsteen and that's just one verse! Whether the rest of the album continues on a similar theme or not, we will have to wait and see.

I think When You Were Young is a great single and this despite not liking it straight away, it's really grown on me and continues to do so with every listen - though I appreciate this can't go on infinitely and I fully expect to have gone off it again once it recieves the obligatory media overkill.

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Friday, September 01, 2006


Facial recognition?

Great. So now I look like Ulrika Jonsson. That's just marvellous.

By the way, does anyone have the faintest idea who everyone else is? I can only claim to know Owen Wilson, Selma Blair and the Jonsson.

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