BBC BLOGS - Robbo Robson

Archives for September 2009

Winners and boozers

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Robbo Robson | 10:31 UK time, Monday, 28 September 2009

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"There is no better psychological education than growing up in a pub... I learned about tactics and selection from the people talking about football in the pub - who plays on the left wing and who should be in the team."

Who's this talking?

Harry Redknapp? Big Sam Allardyce? At first I thought he'd nicked it off a previous blog of mine! But no, it's the thoughts of one Arsene Wenger. Monsieur Sophistication. Raised to the scent of Gaulois and 1664. A booze orphan tapping up the locals for a bit of knowledge.

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Time for some Sol searching, Campbell

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Robbo Robson | 10:15 UK time, Friday, 25 September 2009

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Well I'm all ears, Sol. Why the sudden U-turn? How on earth can a narrow defeat at Morecambe convince you that life at the majestic Meadow Lane was not up to much?

Admittedly it doesn't help when the Morecambe team dress up as Arsenal just to remind you of where you once were. And actually Morecambe isn't that much to write home about. I lived there for a couple of months and all I can remember was a force nine gale and windows bathed in sea salt.

But what the hell was Campbell up to? They've got the big time Charlies pumping the cash in and he takes a decent whack of it for 90 minutes and he's off. Is he going freelance a la Flintoff? A kind of roaming Red Adair of a centre-back who can give you 90 minutes of solid resistance and move on to his next big challenge? To be fair he's not in tip-top shape I reckon.

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Time Is On Your Side, Fergie

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Robbo Robson | 09:49 UK time, Monday, 21 September 2009

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Thank goodness there's more to talk about this weekend than Boro's 5-0 drubbing at home to the Baggies. In the Blue Bell, Happy Hour was re-dubbed Grievin' Evenin', and even then an ocean of half-price pintage could not have drowned the multitude of sorrows that swirled around that boozer.

Anyway onwards and upwards (or backwards and downwards at it was at approximately 10.30pm on Saturday) we're still well-placed and as long as the back-four stop defending like daffodils in an April shower we might clamber back out of the bear-pit.

We were back in the same seats for the Manchester derby, sipping quietly on our bitter shandies. We couldn't drink quickly 'cos that would've involved drawing breath every now and then - and my word, there wasn't time, was there?

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Champions League? You're having a laugh

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Robbo Robson | 13:19 UK time, Friday, 18 September 2009

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It's back. Not the perennial freak show of X Factor auditions (this year get to lose your dignity in front of 2,000 people in an aircraft hangar as well as the millions watching at home! How soon before they have a tone deaf special?)

Not Strictly Come Dancing with its parade of 'where the hell is he from?' celebs, excluding Tuffers and Hingis. (I confess I'd like Tuffers to do well. If they let him have a fag on the go during the tango he could be off to a flyer).

No I mean The Flaming Champions Bloomin League. There it is resurfacing from the murk of summer like some swollen slobbering many-tentacled sea beast that survives by eating its own remorselessly regenerating tail.

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Adebayor deserves all he gets

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Robbo Robson | 11:07 UK time, Monday, 14 September 2009

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A few years back I was enjoying a free role in a Blue Bell match (free as in I was sub so I was free to do what the hell I liked) when our centre-forward was felled by some hairy giant redwood of a man.

When it came to the theatrics, our frontman made Drogba look like one of them dopey child-men presenters off of CBeebies, but on this occasion the twang of hamstring was unmistakeable.

Now I'm nominally a holding midfielder who sits, often literally sits, in front of the back four. I wasn't expecting to be the team's spearhead at 2-2 with 20 minutes to go, but that's where I was put.

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Why England will win the World Cup!

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Robbo Robson | 09:38 UK time, Friday, 11 September 2009

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Oh dear. I woke up to find a car on our street decorated by two flags of St George. Plonker, I thought. Imagine my surprise when I realized they were on my car.

The wife tells me I reeled in, scrabbled through a box in the loft, half fell back down the step-ladder, staggered outside singing 'Engerland, Engerland, Engerland', and wedged the darn things on to me front bumper meself.

Trouble is, sobriety hasn't made my mind any clearer. I suppose it's good to hear these common-sense let's-not-get-ahead-of-ourselves pessimists chuntering on, but it's all a bit coy and Jane Austen if you ask me ('Why Mr. Hansen, we must not talk of such things'. Face down, flutter eyelashes).

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Robbo's England picks

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Robbo Robson | 11:45 UK time, Monday, 7 September 2009

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I've become indifferent to friendly internationals. The only one I can remember enjoying recently was that 3-2 v Argentina when Michael Owen (remember him? Forward, one-paced, goal-shy, Newcastle used him as a couch-warmer in the physio's room?) scored late-on to nick the win.

Still, at least England's win over Slovenia was a bit of prep for the Croatia game - but I'm not sure I'd be entirely happy with the first 11 players Capello put out.

Rob Green doesn't inspire confidence. He's not actually a country bumpkin (born in Surrey) but every so often he has a dopey moment (aka a 'Rio') that makes him look for all the world like he should be wearing a floppy straw hat and a peasant's smock. "Arrrr... did I dawdle out o' my box there, boy? Oopsy."

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All divers should be punished

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Robbo Robson | 10:00 UK time, Friday, 4 September 2009

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Ey-up. The head honchos are on the warpath. Eduardo's two-game ban for diving is a welcome one. Not as drastic a punishment as has been proposed on this blog before, but welcome nevertheless.

I've had it up to here with Gooners bleating that it's not fair that their lad got picked on when everybody's at it. Then they recommend the same axe fall on the head of 'honest' Wayne Rooney for his less flamboyant effort on Saturday.

I don't want to keep picking over the slo-mos but while Rooney may well have been turf-bound before Almunia completed the job, Eduardo had a more blatant plunge than Katy Price's neckline.

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Cast-iron uncertainties

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Robbo Robson | 06:30 UK time, Tuesday, 1 September 2009

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Is it the first international break already?

The first international fracture is Luka Modric, I suppose. Can't say we'll miss him at Wembley a week Wednesday of course.

With a pause in the action it's the perfect time to draw way too many conclusions from way too few matches and I'm just the man. So let's test some early assumptions...

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