This is still a three-horse title race – the 10 reasons why Man City might drop points

[ad_1] It seems unlikely that north London denizen TS Eliot was an Arsenal fan, but his poetry suggests otherwise. “April is the cruellest month,” begins The Waste Land. “I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed,” laments The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock. “This is the way the challenge ends; not with a bang … Read more

Ryan Giggs and football: A very complicated relationship

[ad_1] The celebration was almost as glorious as the goal itself. The fuzz of chest hair, the twirling shirt, the body swerve to evade the Manchester United fans who had run on the pitch in their euphoria. On Sunday, it is 25 years since Patrick Vieira, a genuine great of Arsenal’s midfield, played a wayward … Read more

The Premier League title race: Every fixture analysed

[ad_1] The Premier League remains a European outlier this season. Everywhere you look around the continent, title races have become virtual processions. Paris Saint-Germain are 10 points clear in France’s Ligue 1, Bayer Leverkusen are 16 ahead and one win away from winning the German Bundesliga title, while PSV Eindhoven have a nine-point cushion at … Read more

How do you know if a football manager is actually good at their job?

[ad_1] An important thing to remember about Andre Villas-Boas is that he had ridiculously good hair. You don’t spend a record-shattering €15 million (£12.9; $16.3m) fee to sign a rookie manager away from Porto unless you’re pretty sure you know what you’re getting, and one thing Chelsea knew for certain, back in the heady days … Read more

Do big sporting wins cause an increase in birth rates among fans?

[ad_1] Football arguably doesn’t need anything extra to feed its collective sense of self-importance, but the idea that it can cause new life to be created will certainly do it. You might remember a rather dramatic game in the National League towards the end of last season when Wrexham and Notts County faced each other … Read more

The Briefing: Will Haaland’s form cost Man City? Cole Palmer: MVP? Xabi Alonso’s power move

[ad_1] Welcome to The Briefing, where every Monday during this season The Athletic will discuss three of the biggest questions to arise from the weekend’s football. This was the round when Newcastle snatched victory from the clamped-shut jaws of defeat against West Ham, Liverpool went top of the league after an early scare against Brighton, Manchester United went … Read more

Ukraine qualify for Euro 2024: ‘The world is going to watch and see we never give up’

[ad_1] More than 40 members of Ukraine’s national-team party were spread around the centre circle of Wroclaw’s Tarczynski Arena. Players, coaches and backroom staff locked their gaze on the 30,000 spectators sporting blue and yellow as they revved up their version of the Viking thunderclap. Iceland, the architects of that celebration during the 2016 European … Read more

Football’s best up-and-coming managers: Thiago Motta, a fascinating tactician

[ad_1] This is the first article in a six-part series looking at some of European football’s most innovative up-and-coming managers. Thiago Motta knows a thing or two about success. When your CV includes two La Liga titles, one Serie A title, five Ligue 1 titles and two Champions League winners medals, you tend to command … Read more

The men who want to buy football clubs: Chris Kirchner, the $25m fraudster

[ad_1] In the first of our series about the men who want to buy English football clubs, this is the remarkable story of Chris Kirchner, who came close to taking over Derby County and was then found guilty of fraud and money laundering. This week, we will examine five prospective investors and what their interest … Read more

Jamie Cassidy – the Liverpool prodigy who became a cocaine conspirator

[ad_1] He appeared in the dock at Manchester Crown Court like a familiar-looking stranger, a vivid memory from a distant past. Jamie Cassidy had once been one of the most promising young footballers at Liverpool, England’s most successful club, a player deemed good enough to train with his national team ahead of the 1996 European … Read more