Archive for March, 2012
Joey Barton has increased the pressure on his QPR team-mates by saying that some of them are playing for their careers. Read more
It will be a huge boost for Manchester City if they can get captain Vincent Kompany back fit in time to face Sunderland on Saturday. Every game from now until the end of the season is huge for City as they need to continue to put pressure on leaders Manchester United. Read more
Hurricane Fly will go into the Punchestown Festival next month hoping to make up for his disappointment in the Champion Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival on Tuesday. Read more
If there is one essential attribute for a potential winner of the John Smith’s Grand National it must be stamina, and whilst his recent form hasn’t set the world alight, one thing that Martin Keighley’s Any Currency certainly does is stay, so expect him to be passing rivals in the closing stage of the ‘world’s greatest steeplechase’ that takes place at Aintree on April 14, writes Elliot Slater. Read more
When Fabrice Muamba collapsed during the FA cup tie at White Hart Lane two weeks ago, the whole football world went into a state of shock and prayed for the Bolton midfielder to survive. It was a traumatic time for any football fan, but for the players and the teammates of Muamba, it is still having a big affect on them. Read more
A former Washington Redskin has begun an attempt to sue the NFL, claiming that the league knowingly hid information about the dangers of the sport and the prevalence of traumatic brain injury among footballers.
Mark Rypien, 49, claims that the NFL “deliberately ignored and actively concealed” evidence suggesting that professional footballers were at a greater risk of head injuries than other sportsmen and women.
The development is the latest in a worrying trend in the NFL, which has seen more than 1,000 retired players level some lawsuit or other at the league in retribution for brain damage or other head conditions.
Rypien and 126 other players filed the most recent class-action lawsuit on March 23 in Pennsylvania. The two-time Super Bowl champion is demanding compensation and medical help to fix “repeated traumatic injuries to his head”.
The NFL has only recently taken steps to reduce the incidence of concussion in football matches, chiefly by moving kick-offs up five
yards. The change reduced the number of head injuries by 40% practically overnight.
Rich McKay, the NFL’s competition chief, intimated that any contact with a footballer’s head or neck could soon be illegal. McKay also mentioned the introduction of sterner punishments for crackback blocks and the dangerous horsecollar tackles.
Locks Law Firm, a group of lawyers in Philadelphia, have made a name for themselves representing footballers; an alleged 600 are on their books. Speaking to the Washington Post, Locks said: “it’s a sad commentary”.
“We think the league delayed, didn’t do a competent job of monitoring, and in many cases disregarded what it knew about concussions”, the firm said.
An interesting development in the NFL-head injury saga is the appearance of a website dedicated to the topic, entitled NFL
The latest post on the site concerns the death of former footballer, Curtis Whitley, who reportedly showed some signs of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, a condition directly related to frequent concussions, prior to his death from a drug overdose.
New York Giants coach, Tom Coughlin, is rumoured to be a “month to six weeks” away from a contract that should see him through to retirement. “I have no doubt it’s going to get done very soon”, said Giants owner, John Mara.
The 66-year-old Coughlin, who has been in the Big Apple since 2004, has been living almost day-to-day at the Giants, despite winning two Super Bowls.
While Coughlin has had job security in the sense that he is contracted until the end of 2012 – and before that, from 2008 to the close of 2011 – persistent calls for the former Jaguar to be sacked have kept Coughlin in a limbo-like state at the Giants.
The coach’s time at New York has been marked by huge ‘peaks’, such as the two Super Bowl wins, both over the Patriots (namely, XLII and XLVI), and deep ‘troughs’, like the Giants’ four mid-season losses in 2011.
New York also missed out on the play-offs in 2010, after losing to the Philadelphia Eagles late in the season. Consequently, the short
contract he was given last year seemed to signify his imminent departure from the team.
The reality is quite different from the media’s doom-saying: “We’ve had a lot of good discussions since the Super Bowl”, Mara continued. “As I’ve said, Tom is our guy, and we think we have the best coach in the league.”
Coughlin is currently the oldest coach in the NFL. However, the ‘Colonel’, so-named for his fondness for discipline, has repeatedly
refused to retire. “He is coaching for the love of the sport and his profession” explained Doug Rush, columnist at the Bleacher Report.
The same writer added that the Giants could be preparing to cough up a contract worth $25m over four years for Coughlin.
Former Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez has again said he would relish the chance to manage the club at some point in the future but has distanced himself from taking over from under-fire boss Kenny Dalglish in the short term. Read more
The Calgary Stampeders have added to their numbers with local-born running-back, Matt Walter. The youngster, who earned his cleats playing for the University of Calgary Dinos, taking the side to the Mitchell Bowl, is described as a “dominant” footballer.
Walter was pick no.34 in the 2011 Draft for the Stampeders. He signed for the franchise in May of the same year. However, he was almost immediately sent back to the Dinos to cut his teeth in the amateur leagues.
During his five seasons with the Dinos in the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) competition, he received three call-ups to the Canada West All-Star team. He rushed 763 yards in 2010, the second-highest tally in the CIS.
His total 4,143 rushing yards with the Dinos is a record for the team. The Stampeders will no doubt be hoping that the 22-year-old can bring his aptitude for running to senior football during his first full season in the CFL.
The Stampeders head coach and general manager, John Hufnagel, said that he was “impressed” with Walter’s display of “skill and
competitiveness” at the training camp he was sent to in 2011.
“I look forward to his continued improvement in his attempt to become a Calgary Stampeder”, Hufnagel continued. “Matt showed during his university career that he can be a dominant running back.”
Walter is perhaps best known in the CFL for his presence in the silver medal-winning Canada team at the World Football Championships in Austria, last year. He scored six touchdowns over three games for his country.
The Stamps have not revealed the details of Walter’s contract, in accordance with their team policy. Calgary were rumoured to have
signed the footballer back in early December. The team’s recent announcement confirms the acquisition.
There are has always been controversy where ever Jose Mourinho goes, but while he has always mastered the controversy to the benefit of his teams, there are fears that his ‘missteps’ could impact Real Madrid’s form at a crucial stage of the season. Read more