Five Premier League sides who escaped from precarious positions at the turn of the year

Southampton, 1998/99

When Santa Claus was making his way down the world’s chimneys on Christmas Day 1998, there was little festive cheer to be found in Southampton. Dave Jones’ men were mired in a relegation battle having won just three of their first 18 matches and conceded 35 goals – the worst defensive record in the division.

Continue reading

New Year 2012: A weekend of shocks in the Premier League

There must have been something in the air over New Year’s weekend in 2011/12, with the four teams occupying the Champions League qualification spots all failing to emerge victorious in the Premier League. Yet whereas third-placed Tottenham Hotspur at least managed a draw against Swansea City, each of Chelsea, Manchester United and Manchester City were unable to even pick up a point…

Continue reading

Christmas Cracker: Remembering Chelsea 4-4 Aston Villa, the best Boxing Day game ever

Boxing Day is a time for leftover turkey, sales at the shops and wild football matches. The wacky round of post-Christmas fixtures in 1963 has gone down in legend, with the division’s 20 teams sharing an astonishing 66 goals – a ludicrous tally which led to much questioning about just how many pigs in blankets the league’s defenders had demolished the day before.

Continue reading

Remembering English football’s most incredible Boxing Day in 1963

The Boxing Day fixture list is widely seen as an intrinsic part of the English football calendar, with its continued presence in 2019 representing a rare nod to tradition.

Perhaps, though, the primary reason for its endurance is the widespread hope that a repeat of the 1963 edition cannot be too much further around the corner.

Continue reading

Champions League round of 16 draw: Analysis of all the ties

Napoli vs Barcelona

Barcelona have not reached the final of the Champions League since their most recent triumph in 2015, and second-leg collapses against Roma and Liverpool in the last couple of seasons mean the pressure is on the Catalan giants to deliver in 2019/20.

Continue reading

6 classic Manchester United vs Tottenham clashes from the Premier League era

Tottenham 3-5 Manchester United, 2001

Spurs were in dreamland midway through this meeting at White Hart Lane, having established a 3-0 lead over the reigning champions thanks to goals from Dean Richards, Christian Ziege and Les Ferdinand.

Continue reading

Euro 2020 draw: A group-by-group guide to next summer’s tournament

The draw for the group stage of the 16th edition of the European Championship took place in Bucharest on Saturday, as the 20 already-qualified countries learned their fate. There are still four spots to be determined at next March’s play-offs, but we now know who the vast majority of sides will be playing in the first round of next summer’s pan-European competition.

Continue reading

Jose Mourinho is back in the Premier League – and Tottenham job could define the rest of his career

In the end, it was all over rather quickly. Following a day of rumours suggesting that his position was under threat, Mauricio Pochettino parted ways with Tottenham late on Tuesday night. Just eleven hours later the club had confirmed that Jose Mourinho would be the man replacing the Argentinian at the helm.

Continue reading

6 memorable Premier League matches between Liverpool and Manchester City

Liverpool 3-2 Manchester City (September 2000)

In terms of determining the destination of the Premier League title, it can now be said that Liverpool vs Manchester City is the biggest game in English football. It was not always thus, however, but the two teams still played out an entertaining encounter in 2000 despite neither being anywhere near that season’s championship tussle.

Continue reading