Every sport has it. Most players have done it at one stage or another. Trash talking is part of the game. It’s a way to get into the mind of an opposing player and hopefully take him off his game. The truth though, is many players don’t know how to trash talk. Instead of a word game that goes back and forth discussing whose skills are better or weaker; players of today get into a verbal spat where they make racist and personal attacks. This is in no way trash talking.
In one of my most recent blogs, I talked about the danger of two footed tackles and the blemish they put on an otherwise beautiful game. Before I could even turn around, I watched one of the most anticipated games in the soccer world – Manchester Utd vs. Liverpool – turn into a reckless tackling free for all. This game had moments of pure soccer brilliance, but it didn’t matter because a few yoyo’s that lost their heads.
It’s only the Carling Cup but it’ll be interesting to see how Arsenal bounce back from this loss. Perhaps they are and were always more focused on the Premiership and Champions League but the smaller games against weaker opponents is where you build confidence and gain momentum to carry you down the stretch. In all fairness, Arsenal were playing without Cesc Fabregas and Theo Walcott. In addition, Arsene Wenger used the Carling Cup as a testing ground for players who looked as though they couldn’t grow a mustache.
Is it just me or is it harder and harder to get truly interested in modern day professional sports? Maybe it has something to do with the phoniness of owners and managers who don’t really care to create a winning franchise for all the right reasons. Maybe it’s the hypocrisy of the professional leagues themselves that force players to do whatever it takes to win, but they are the first to point the finger when a player is being accused of using enhancement tools, i.e. steroids. Maybe it’s the deceptiveness of players who preach about fans being everything to them, but will betray those exact same fans for another zero on the end of their contract. Or maybe, it’s all three…
Two footed tackles are not only unacceptable, but they put a blemish on an otherwise beautiful game. In an ideal world, two footed tackles would result in a straight red card, followed by severe fines and suspensions. We cannot always rely on referee’s to make the correct calls as things can happen very quickly, and often too quickly to make a rational decision in a matter of seconds. The soccer organizations of the world, i.e UEFA and FIFA, need to be sending clear messages: two footed tackles will not be tolerated.
The English Premier League this year is proving to be one of the better ones of the past decade. Traditionally, we have a better idea as to who will win the EPL by this point in the season but not this year. Fortunately for Manchester United, they have a history under Sir Alex Ferguson to hit their stride just after the Christmas break and their recent game versus Sunderland was an indication of some great football to come.
OK this is just embarrassing! If you’re a Real Madrid fan here is another reason why NOT to be one. Real Madrid recently celebrated a goal with crotch slaps. Yes that is correct…crotch slaps. The embarrassing moment came after the 7th goal in their 8-0 Copa del Rey win over Levante. Whether you’re a Real Madrid fan or not this behavior has nothing to do with the game and only embarrasses anybody who enjoys the sport of soccer.
I recently watched the Toronto Raptors of the NBA take on the LA Lakers. Kobe Bryant of the Lakers was obviously the player to watch. After reading up on him I learned some interesting facts. Kobe Bryant is obviously an incredible talent but in a recent interview he stated that to prepare for the upcoming season he was up running at the track everyday at 6am. He then went on to take 1,000 shots from all around the court before team practice. For example, he had to make (not attempt) 400 free throws before moving on to the next shot. After team practice he watched up to three hours of game footage of himself and his opponents. He did this every single day of the summer in preparation for the upcoming season. Kobe is truly a student of the game and his success is no mistake. Success leaves trails and it is up to us to follow those same patterns.
It’s about time someone in the professional football world speak-up and against the 2022 World Cup decision. Most recently Blackpool manager, Ian Holloway, shared his thoughts on FIFA considering a winter 2022 World Cup. Yes that is correct…a winter world cup. Best part is he didn’t hold back from saying what a lot people around the world are thinking.