World Cup 2010 Draw

Like many workplaces around the world we too are holding an office draw in celebration of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. All 32 teams went into a hat and we each got to pick 2 teams (for a nominal fee of course). However, despite having the honor of being one of the first to pick, I still managed to pick two complete outsiders, North Korea and the Ivory Coast! The first one is probably a complete write off but the latter might stand a outside chance of causing one or two upsets. That said, with prizes for top 4 finishers, I’ll not be holding my breath on either team.

Who did you pick in your workplace draw?

You’ll Never Walk Alone

Today, Wednesday, 15th April 2009 marks the 20th anniversary of the Hillsborough Soccer Disaster where 96 people lost their lives at an FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest at Hillsborough Stadium, Sheffield, England.

I can still remember watching the tragedy unfold on the day it happened and proudly join in remembering the victims and their families today, as do Liverpool fans everywhere.

You’ll Never Walk Alone

Victory for Hughes in Fantasy Sporting Role

Congratulations to Paul Hughes who has emerged victorious in the 2007/2008 edition of my Fantasy Soccer league. Paul’s team Ruckus FC held their nerve in the final few games of the season to score a narrow 8 point victory over Karl Spratt, a former winner. The winning points tally was 1,872 and beats the previous record by an impressivea 90 points.

The lack of clean sheets as well as the Didier Drogba sending off in the Champions League final between Manchester United and Chelsea (in which both contenders had two players from each team) killed any chances of a shock victory for second-placed Ian Brady.

What was interesting about this years competition was that, not unlike the real thing, there was only one point separating the top two teams going into the last Premiership game of the season (and a mere 5 points between them prior to the Champions League final). Also, with the exception of one Chris Gallgher, every one of the top ten teams this year were managed by former colleagues of mine from Eurologic and every one the winners from the other divisions are current colleagues of mine at TSSG.

Additional Links

Who is Levan Tskitishvili?

I’ve seen some pretty unusual footballing surnames in recent years but Levan Tskitishvili can boast one of the better ones. Well, when I say better, what I really mean is “really hard for me to pronounce”. Even after my ninth attempt, I’m not sure I got it right. Admittedly, this probably has a lot to do with my lack of Eastern European linguistic talents and Levan would almost certainly struggle with many of Irish surnames too.

In any case, if you are interested, Levan Tskitishvili is a Georgian footballer that the English soccer club Birmingham City recently tried (but failed) to sign as one of their players.
Source: BBC Sport

Fantasy Football 2007/2008

It’s that time of year again and I’m delighted to be running my 9th annual Fantasy Football competition for the 2007/2008 season.

Once again, there will be no entrance fee this year which means that there will also be no prizes so all you are playing for is the pride of winning. However, if you would like to organise a mini league amongst your friends or colleagues, just let me know and I can arrange this for you. Of course, if anyone wants to sponsor the competition, I’d be more than happy to accept your generosity 😉

Here are the details …

  1. Visit to pick and submit your team
  2. Team value must not exceed €50.0 million and must use 4-3-3 formation
  3. Must not pick any more than 2 players from any club
  4. The closing date for entries is 12.30pm on Saturday, August 11th 2007

You can enter as many times as you like.

Thank you for your time and the very best of luck to wall those who enter!

The Mighty Reds march on to Athens

Well I am positively out of finger nails to bite after a thrilling finish to a truly great night at Anfield as Liverpool FC tonight went through to their second Champions League final in 3 years. The Mighty Reds defeated Chelski 4-1 in a penalty shoot-out after winning the game in 1-0 on the night (and drawing 1-1 on aggregate).

Jamie Carragher was once again immense and held off the usual onslaught of Drogba play-acting. On balance, I think Liverpool were good value for the win – they certainly created more chances in the second half. It was also great to see Robbie Fowler make an appearance. What a finish it would have been if he scored the winner!

Of course it is true that we have won nothing yet but that’s talk for another day. Tomorrow we will find out who me meet but tonight, gentlemen, I salute you!

New Liverpool players

Got a chance to see Liverpool FC play at Anfield recently and witnessed to a 3-0 thumping of Tottenham Hotspur. The scoreline flattered them a little as Spurs played very well in the first half. However, they were still good value for the win.

I was very impressed with some of their new signings though. In particular Daniel Agger and Mark Gonzales caught my eye. Agger is a fine defender and keeps a cool head about him. Gonzales on the other hand was exciting, daring and ran Spurs ragged down the left wing. Conversely, Craig Bellamy was awful but maybe he just had an off-day.

Fantasy Football up and running

Well the new Premiership season finally kicked off at the weekend and so did my annual Fantasy Football competition. We had an impressive 70 teams entered this year so there’s plenty scope for promotion and relegation (fantasy, of course) over the course of the season. Best of luck to you all.

There were no real suprises on the opening weekend games with Chelsea and Manchester United both winning impressively and Arsenal and Liverpool both slipping up home and away respectively.

The joint leaders after the first weekend are Alan Murphy and Darren Doyle with 45 points.