EDITOR’S INSIGHT – 19th June 2014.

Image   Story by Robin Popley One week in to Brazil 2014 and it has already proven to be as good as the hype that preceded it. By my mathematics, there is an average of 3 goals per game which means we are well on track for almost 200 goals by the end of the tournament and by the way some teams are attacking, that prediction may well be met. Holland have been scoring as freely as Niagara Falls flows and Spain’s defence has been as absent as a Dingle’s school attendance: which is probably why they have been eliminated after only one week of their title defence. However, what has caught my eye above all else is that, despite in most cases not quite making it over the finishing line the underdog has been more than aptly making up the numbers. Bosnia’s resilience against an Argentinian team which can proudly boast the likes of Messi and Aguero was one of my performances of the tournament and they were very unfortunate to be on the wrong side of a 2-1 scoreline. Moreover, Australia, despite now being also out the World Cup put up a great showing against the Dutch and scored what is probably going to be the goal of the tournament from Tim Cahill. Another stand out performance came in the way of Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa who produced some world class saves against a strong Brazilian front line to earn his side a point and a great chance of progressing to the next round along with the Samba Boys.  Sadly, though, we lost our opening game to Italy despite playing some of the best football we have played in many a year and the World Cup continues to show the gulf in class amongst some nations plus highlight the problems which surround the tournament… Nevertheless, for most, football is providing a much needed relief from the troubles of the world as the caption of FIFA now portrays; “Football is Hope“. Moving away from Rio, for a second and the new domestic calendar took a step closer yesterday to becoming a reality. Both League and League Cup first round fixtures are known and for my team, Leicester City, as tough a return to the Premiership as we could have imagined. Nevertheless being the delusional optimistic supporter that I am, I believe we can turn on the heat against the big boys early doors and I am (not being sarcastic now) entirely convinced that we will stay up in our first season back, especially when you look at our run in at the tail end of the season. Each of our last eight games are entirely winnable, but as we know from last night’s game between Chile and Spain, football isn’t played on paper. That’s also why I suppose I am hopeful about our opening five games which include matches against Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United. Elsewhere, in the domestic game, Ryan’s team (Doncaster Rovers) took one step closer to being taken over by One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson. Despite there being an outside hint of comedy about the premise of their new owner, he is a die-hard Rovers fan and I sincerely hope he brings them prosperity in his ownership. My mate and all those other Doncaster fans out there, plus ex-Foxes legends Dicko and Tags (aka Paul Dickov and Gerry Taggart) deserve to have success brought to such a lovely family oriented club. Finally, Leeds United today appointed ex-Forest Green Manager Dave Hockaday as their new manager. I feel for Leeds fans again, as despite them (as a Club) having a bit of a reputation amongst the game, they are a big team again in the ‘wrong’ league and I doubt Mr Cellino’s latest decision will pay dividends. However, here’s to hoping for you Whites… So, to England and tonight’s game. We’re unchanged. We need to win and it’s in our hands. Good Luck to Roy and The Boys; “COME ON ENGLAND!” Robin.


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