Phil McNulty

Chief football writer

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 France, 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 has been included in the UK Press Gazette's list of the top 50 UK sports journalists.

Nuno Espirito Santo

'A landmark win for ambitious Wolves'

Read full article on Wolves 2-1 Man Utd: FA Cup win 'a landmark moment' at Molineux

Wolverhampton Wanderers fans flooded joyously away from Molineux after their FA Cup quarter-final victory over Manchester United, their raucous celebrations fitting given the significance of this landmark win.

The recent rise of Wolves has been speedy under their charismatic Portuguese manager Nuno Espirito Santo, with a stylish promotion to the Premier League followed by a highly impressive first season back among the elite.

Everton's Jordan Pickford

Should Pickford's England spot be under threat?

Read full article on England squad: Should Jordan Pickford's spot be under threat?

England's squad for their Euro 2020 qualifiers against the Czech Republic and Montenegro is named on Wednesday - at a time when previously undisputed number one Jordan Pickford's form is raising serious cause for concern.

Pickford's frantic performance as Everton lost a two-goal lead to lose at Newcastle raised more questions in an underwhelming season for the 25-year-old, who was one of the heroes as England reached the World Cup semi-finals in Russia last summer.

Brendan Rodgers and Jamie Vardy

'Rodgers' affection shows Vardy is crucial for Leicester'

Read full article on Brendan Rodgers: Leicester manager shows Jamie Vardy is central to the club's plans

Brendan Rodgers has been quick to work out one of the first rules of Leicester City - when Jamie Vardy is happy, the club and its supporters are happy.

Vardy's seemingly fractious relationship with sacked Claude Puel was a running sub-plot before the manager's eventual downfall as the 32-year-old and the dour Frenchman never seemed on the same wavelength.

Claudio Ranieri

'Romantic visions of Leicester turned into a loveless, arranged marriage'

Read full article on Claudio Ranieri: Fulham sack manager having had 'romantic visions of Leicester'

Fulham's fanfare accompanying the appointment of Claudio Ranieri after Slavisa Jokanovic was sacked in November labelled the Italian as "risk free and ready made for the Premier League".

Those words were thrown back in the face of Fulham's owners via a banner brandished during the 2-0 loss at Southampton that ended Ranieri's calamitous 106-day reign at Craven Cottage.

Harry Winks and Kieran Trippier

'Tottenham Hotspur - it's happened again'

Read full article on Chelsea 2-0 Tottenham: How Spurs' title hopes were snuffed out once again

Mauricio Pochettino and his Tottenham players were serenaded with a painfully familiar refrain as the misery and chaos that had been released by Chelsea's victory was turned on them at deafening volume.

"Tottenham Hotspur - it's happened again" thundered from all four sides of Stamford Bridge after Kieran Trippier's late comedy own goal secured a 2-0 win for Chelsea, which lifted the thunder clouds over the club and manager Maurizio Sarri.

Brendan Rodgers stands in front of the Anfield crowd before Liverpool's match with Norwich in 2015

Rodgers' route to Premier League redemption?

Read full article on Brendan Rodgers: 'Leicester job his chance for Premier League redemption'

Brendan Rodgers' move to Leicester City from Celtic - Scottish treble winners twice in succession and a club of global stature - will be considered a coup by the Premier League club's hierarchy.

Rodgers has rebuilt his managerial reputation north of the border after his sacking at Liverpool in 2015, and Leicester are backing him to lead their revival after the sacking of Claude Puel.

Maurizio Sarri

'Sarri undermined by disgraceful insubordination'

Read full article on Maurizio Sarri: Has Kepa Arrizabalaga's cup final defiance fatally undermined Chelsea boss?

Maurizio Sarri left Wembley not only nursing the pain of a Carabao Cup final loss to Manchester City but with every shred of his authority and a large slice of his credibility as Chelsea manager stripped away by a disgraceful act of insubordination from goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga.

This dull final was destined to linger only briefly in the memory until an unsavoury, unprecedented series of events that must surely leave Sarri, already fighting to survive at Stamford Bridge, fatally undermined.

Claude Puel

Puel had to go - but who next for Leicester?

Read full article on Claude Puel had to go - but who next for Leicester?

Leicester City's hierarchy - led by Aiyawatt "Top" Srivaddhanaprabha - will have taken the decision to sack manager Claude Puel with heavy hearts.

The 57-year-old Frenchman was a dignified figure in the aftermath of the helicopter crash at The King Power Stadium in October in which Foxes' owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha and four others died.

Maurizio Sarri

Why end is near for Sarri at Chelsea

Read full article on Maurizio Sarri: Why end is near for Chelsea manager after defeat by Man Utd

As Maurizio Sarri watched his side limp out of the FA Cup, he resembled a jaded end-of-the-pier entertainer going through the same old act that once brought him acclaim but is now greeted with open hostility and - even more painfully - mockery.

The early weeks of the season, when the 'Sarri-ball' philosophy that won him the adulation of peers such as Pep Guardiola brought optimism to Chelsea, seemed an age away as Manchester United breezed into the FA Cup quarter-final without needing to raise a gallop.


Can Tottenham stay under the radar?

Read full article on Can Tottenham Hotspur stay under radar in Champions League?

Tottenham's understated and underrated progress through this season has been accompanied every inch of the way by suggestions they are going "under the radar".

Mauricio Pochettino's side have been following in the slipstream of headline-grabbing Premier League pacesetters Manchester City and Liverpool, almost but not quite getting knocked out of the Champions League and generally living in the shadows cast by Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp.