Phil McNulty

Chief football writer, BBC Sport

Analysis and opinion from our chief football writer

About Phil

Phil has covered football on regional and national newspapers since... Read more about Phil McNulty the late 80s and has been BBC Sport's Chief Football Writer since July 2000.

He has covered World Cups for the BBC in Japan and South Korea, Germany and South Africa as well as European Championships in Portugal and Poland and Ukraine.

Born in Liverpool, Phil attended De La Salle Grammar School which later had England striker Wayne Rooney as its most famous ex-pupil.

Phil's main brief is covering the Premier League, England and the Champions League and he can also be heard giving his analysis on BBC Radio 5 live, Radio Four and the World Service.

He was recently included in the UK Press Gazette's list of the top 50 UK sports journalists.

How did O'Neill's heroes defy odds?

Read full article on Northern Ireland: 'Michael O'Neill's team are country's new heroes'

Northern Ireland ended 30 years of waiting to rejoin football's elite after qualifying for Euro 2016 with victory over Greece at a Windsor Park stadium awash with emotion.

Manager Michael O'Neill and his unsung squad have battled against the odds to reach their first major tournament since the 1986 World Cup in Mexico - and their first European Championship finals.

Biggest challenges for new Reds boss

Read full article on Liverpool job: Challenges the new manager must face head on

Liverpool fully expect to have a new manager in place by the time they play their next match at Tottenham after Brendan Rodgers was sacked on Sunday night.

Owners Fenway Sports Group hope this will be 48-year-old former Borussia Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp, who is their top choice ahead of three-time Champions League winner Carlo Ancelotti.

Why Liverpool sacked manager Rodgers

Read full article on Brendan Rodgers: Why Liverpool sacked their manager

Brendan Rodgers was sacked as Liverpool manager after travelling from the brink of history to Anfield oblivion in the space of 18 months.

On 27 April 2014, Rodgers was being carried along on a crest of euphoria that looked certain to make him the first Liverpool manager to win the title in 24 years.

'Sunderland ultimate boom and bust'

Read full article on 'Dick Advocaat exit latest crisis in repeating Sunderland saga'

Dick Advocaat ignored all his natural instincts and vast exposure to football's shifting fortunes by agreeing to lead Sunderland this season.

The 68-year-old Dutchman kept a promise to wife Dieuwke when he decided to leave his role as head coach at the Stadium of Light after guiding the Black Cats to Premier League safety as caretaker-manager last term.

Why is it going wrong in Europe?

Read full article on Champions League: Why are English teams struggling?

Arsenal and Chelsea slipped to defeat on another night of Champions League embarrassment for the English elite - grim statistics lying around their feet like rubble, proof that the glory days are over.

The Premier League's finest have so far played six group games in Europe's biggest tournament and five have ended in defeat. Manchester City and Manchester United play their second games on Wednesday having both lost their first.

Are Man Utd genuine title contenders?

Read full article on Man Utd: Are the Premier League leaders genuine title contenders?

Manchester United are back on top of the Premier League for the first time in 770 days as the landscape suddenly shifts and Manchester City go from looking invincible to vulnerable.

United's 3-0 win over Sunderland saw them overhaul neighbours City - who lost 4-1 at Tottenham - to occupy a position they have not held since the first match of David Moyes' abysmal reign as manager, when they won 4-1 at Swansea on 17 August 2013.

Six goalscorers, six goal droughts

Read full article on Rooney, Aguero, Hazard, Costa, Sanchez & Kane: What is wrong?

Wayne Rooney was England's history man with his 50th goal for his country against Switzerland - but his blank at Southampton on Sunday saw the Manchester United captain set an unwanted personal record.

He has now gone 11 games and 954 minutes without a Premier League goal in the most barren spell since his made his Everton debut as a 16-year-old in August 2002.

'Costa crosses the line too often'

Read full article on Diego Costa: Chelsea's 'serial offender' a vital figure

Diego Costa has made a convincing play to be the Premier League's most divisive figure since his arrival from Atletico Madrid in the summer of 2014 - but rarely has opinion been so split as after his part in Chelsea's 2-0 win against Arsenal at Stamford Bridge.

From the first whistle Costa, typically, was right in the face of Gabriel and Laurent Koscielny and willing to fully engage in the physical and verbal battles.

Have Chelsea blown the title already?

Read full article on Chelsea: Has Jose Mourinho blown the title already?

The sound of Jose Mourinho insisting he is the best man to lead Chelsea just four months after taking them to the Premier League title is a measure of the scale of their decline this season.

Chelsea's 3-1 defeat at Everton on Saturday was their third in five league games - adding up to the club's worst start in 29 years as they lie in the uncharted territory, for Mourinho at least, of 16th place in the table.

Is Rooney England's greatest striker?

Read full article on Wayne Rooney: England's greatest ever striker?

England captain Wayne Rooney secured his place in history when he elevated himself above World Cup-winning legend Sir Bobby Charlton as his country's highest goalscorer - but is he the greatest?

He now stands ahead of the 77-year-old Manchester United great, who scored his 49 goals in 106 appearance and ex-Tottenham Hotspur forward Gary Lineker, who scored 48 goals in 80 games for England.