The Loneliness of the Foreign Import

Its half time in the first Portsmouth-Southampton South Coast derby for years and the Sky punditry team of John Beresford and Ian Dowie are dissecting the action. Beresford is sorely tempted to cross the unspoken line and break the professionals’ code of honour. He is suggesting that, by Zivkovic giving the ball away cheaply in a dangerous area, leading to the opening Saints goal, by Srnicek attempting to save with his feet not his hands, Portsmouth don’t fancy the battle. The implication seems to be that this South Coast derby may be a matter of consequence for the fans, but […]

Read More...

Graham Souness, Blinded By The Light

My name is Graham Souness, I will have my vengeance in this life or the next. For the gladiator, the fight against injustice is eternal, When victory is on the line you can be sure Graham Souness will be at your side, burning with pride and unquenchable will. In the recent Blackburn-Liverpool Carling Cup encounter, visiting fans taunted Souness, from the sanctuary of a 4-1 scoreline, with ‘Souness, Souness what’s the score?’ Mocking the iron-man legend who used to drive the Liverpool midfield engine with such high-octane authority. ‘You get in first before they get you’, was his credo. You […]

Read More...

Premiership Postures

This report was created by Martin Perry, exclusively for the London Times. The aim of this special Sports Psychology report is to give insight into the body language and psychology of the Premiership managers It is obvious that the job of a Premiership manager is stressful; we dont need the evidence of Houlliers heart attack to convince us of that. Every time they lead their teams to the white line they are under the spotlight of the television cameras; they have to learn how to deal with that glare; it heightens emotions and bleaches out uncertainty in the viewers eyes. […]

Read More...

Sven Goran Eriksson – Mission Impossible?

He arrived to a standing ovation at Upton Park. As if the East Enders, loyal to the national cause, sensed in the calm Swede the something else, the something different, the calming, indefinable ingredient x-the healing England needed after the emotional excesses of the Keegan era. And, initially, he delivered. Lifting the shadow of fear, encouraging his young charges to, in sports psychology parlance, dare to lose to win, the Germans were routed in memorable fashion in Munich. Prompting the belief that the World Cup could be taken from the French. It wasn’t just the freedom with which the players […]

Read More...

Inside The Mind Of Kevin Keegan

Imagine that Kevin Keegan and a team of mountaineers set off to conquer the South West face of Everest. The expedition would leave base camp with boundless camaraderie, conviction and confidence. The party would advance up the mountain with spirit and optimism, until suddenly, with the summit in sight, conditions would get more difficult. Its at this point, on the verge of success, that Kevin, for no apparent reason, turns round and heads for base camp. When asked why he didnt keep going to the top, Kevin would struggle to offer a clear explanation, but an astute commentator might observe, […]

Read More...

I’m A Superstar – Get Me Out Of Here!

The BBC opened the papers after the FA Cup third round to discover they were in the dock. Accused of excess caution. In their selection of live cup action the public were denied the schadenfreude of witnessing the cup’s romance as Everton were beaten at Gay Meadow. Viewers were forced to watch Tottenham’s meek submission in Hampshire.Yet it was easy to understand the BBC’s thinking. Everton’s transformation under the astute Moyes suggested they would be fully prepared for the Shrewsbury challenge. Professional enough to absorb the home side’s pressure and probably make class tell. Like the BBC, the Toffeemen failed […]

Read More...

Inside The Mind Of Roy Keane

In The Tempest, Caliban complains to his master, Prospero, You taught me language: and my profit ont is I know how to curse The Drama Four games into his latest comeback and the football world waits to see whether Roy Keane has become a convert to Sun Tzes Art of War offensive strategy that To subdue the enemy without fighting is the supreme excellence. Or is the King of Cork still living by his own unwritten rules of sporting warfare? Rules which have been his battle code of honour for fifteen years. Rule 1 The greater the pain of rejection […]

Read More...