Back in 1992, the very first goalkeeper to be signed in the Premier League era - during a summer in which clubs were scratching their heads over how to deal with the imminent, game-changing backpass law - was Alan Kelly. Sheffield United paid Preston £150,000 for his services. For the next five seasons, the average fee paid for a Premier League keeper was around £850,000. Then, in 1997 - which happened to be when the backpass law was amended to forbid them from picking the ball up from a throw-in as well - there was a minor explosion in the cost of goalkeepers. Top-flight clubs spent almost £15m on new number ones, including Brad Friedel (with hair) to Liverpool for £1.35m and Ed de Goey to Chelsea for a shade over £3m. Things rather settled down for a while after that. Fuelled by the wide-eyed wonder of the burgeoning mid-to-late-90s foreign influx - which set deadline day on the way to its current frantic status - transfer funds were diverted to more … [Read more...] about A £175m glove story: How the Premier League finally decided to break the bank for its goalkeepers
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The Premier League, as it tends to, is returning for another season. Along with all of the goals, soap opera storylines and unmissable live clashes between Huddersfield and Southampton, we also have new home and away kits for every team taking part in the competition. There was a time when a club would hang onto a kit for a couple of years, occasionally more. That tradition has fallen by the wayside like teams running out of the tunnel ahead of kick-off instead of filing out politely in the world's least-useful jackets to share the sort of non-commital handshakes that would immediately disqualify you from Dragon's Den funding. The slate of entirely new outfits is great news for annual kit ranking articles but, as is becoming increasingly clear, bad news for the quality of designs on show. A new kit every year inevitably means tinkering for the sake of it, an increasingly frantic cycle through arbitrary flourishes which give the appearance of renewal but often look more like … [Read more...] about Premier League new kits 2018/19: ranked
By Matthew Henry BBC Sport 4 Aug From the section Premier League Share this with Digg Facebook Google LinkedIn Reddit StumbleUpon Twitter Copy this link http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/44236045 Read more about sharing. Manchester City smashed record after record in winning the Premier League title last season.But will they be able to retain it? When the English top flight returns on Friday, Pep Guardiola's side will attempt to do what no team has managed since 2009 and record back-to-back title triumphs.Prior to 2009 the Premier League was defended on seven occasions but in the subsequent nine seasons no team has successfully achieved the feat.In that time Bayern Munich won the Bundesliga six times in a row, Barcelona claimed back-to-back Spanish titles on two occasions, Juventus won Serie A for seven straight seasons and Paris St-Germain lifted the French title four … [Read more...] about Premier League: Why has it become so hard to defend the title?
PUBLISHED: 15:04 20 July 2018 | UPDATED: 15:04 20 July 2018 The man who sold the World Cup - disgraced former Fifa president Sepp Blatter, right, being welcomed by AFC president Mohammed bin Hammam upon his arrival in Qatar in 2013. Up for discussion was the scheduling of the 2022 World Cup Picture: PA Archant Remember the threats of widespread hooliganism at the World Cup? Never happened. Or some underhand jiggery-pokerey by the hosts? That didn’t either.Maybe racist behaviour? Thankfully not. Or corruption exposed? Nope.To the disappointment of the sceptics, and the delight of most of the rest of us, the whole World Cup was almost too good to be true.Now we have four years to wait for the next one – and if you thought Russia was going to be problematic, then you ain’t seen nothing yet. If you thought the heat of host country Qatar was going to be the biggest issue, then think again – English football has an awful lot more on its plate, even before a ball … [Read more...] about Chris Lakey: World Cup 2022 in Qatar is going to play havoc with the Premier League … and maybe more
Newcastle United have made theor second signing of the summer after South Korea captain Ki Sung-yueng completed a free transfer to the club. The midfielder is has joined the Magpies on a two-year deal as manager Rafa Benitez adds to his squad ahead of the 2018-19 Premier League campaign. Ki has been at the World Cup in Russia where his country finished third in their group ahead of holders Germany, who they knocked out. The 29-year-old had been on the lookout for a new club after announcing he was to leave Swansea City after they were relegated to the Championship. Benitez fought off competition from Everton to bring the midfielder north. Here’s a profile. Where does Ki Sung-yueng play and what are his assets? Ki is a central midfielder and is known for his box-to-box abilities. He’s got a great eye for a pass and know where the net is. Likes to be on the ball. Before Swansea City, who had Ki Sung-yueng played for? He began in his career with FC Seoul and after a great … [Read more...] about Who is Ki Sung-yueng? Newcastle United’s new midfielder’s rise to the Premier League