But, as a sobering New York Times article last week made clear, America could have a lot to learn by looking to Europe. According to the New York Times, the American middle class – the linchpin of the country's phenomenal postwar economic growth – can no longer call itself the richest in the world. "While the wealthiest Americans are outpacing many of their global peers," says the NYT, "across the lower- and middle-income tiers, citizens of other advanced countries have received considerably larger raises over the last three decades." America's poorest citizens lag behind their European counterparts; 35 years ago, the opposite was true. … [Read more...] about The American Dream is now just that for its middle classes – a dream
Gone in 60 second
In the 15 editions of the Champions League since a few runners-up were first admitted in 1997-98, the trophy has been lifted six times by teams who qualified without winning their domestic championship. The first to do so were Manchester United in 1998-99 (Arsenal had won the Premier League in 1997-98) and it was achieved most recently by Chelsea last season (Manchester United having won the league title in 2010-11. In between Real Madrid in 1999-2000 (the 1998-98 La Liga was won by Barcelona), Milan in 2002-03 (Serie A was won by Juventus in 2001-02), Liverpool in 2004-05 (the 2003-04 Premier League was won by Arsenal) and Barcelona in 2008-09 (La Liga in 2007-08 was won by Real Madrid) have all benefited from Uefa's decision not to take the name of the Champions League too literally. … [Read more...] about Which countries have never produced a Premier League player?
23 mins: Luis Garcia has moved into the space behind Baros previously occupied by Harry Kewell, while Vladimir Smicer has taken up a position on the right side of midfield. Meanwhile, your emails: "After a weekend in which one team showed how it was possible to totally outplay the opposition for 120 minutes and still end up losing, I guess anything's possible. But for the sake of sanity, I hope a classier, more gifted, AC Milan side wipes the deck with this shambles of a Liverpool outfit which just shouldn't be there," writes Reg Gorczynski, who I'm guessing might be a Manchester United fan. … [Read more...] about Liverpool 3 – 3 AC Milan
This was beyond dire – dire squared, dire football played in dire fashion by a dire selection. Imagine a bad plan, enacted badly, by someone not very good at enacting bad plans. Imagine a negative approach, applied with extreme negativity by a group of players feeling negative about the actual merits of all this negativity. Why would anyone want to keep doing this? Is Mourinho enjoying it? Even United’s starting XI was a deathly thing with seven of the 10 starting outfield players either defenders or defensive midfielders. … [Read more...] about With football this dire you have to wonder if José Mourinho is enjoying it
I had been sent to interview Patrick Swayze, who died yesterday from pancreatic cancer at the age of 57, in advance of his run as Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls, in 2006. We met at a dance school off Covent Garden and I recall him entering the room with his trademark hobble, the result of a teenage football injury. After chatting about fame, marriage and alcoholism, he graciously acquiesced when I asked him, hot-faced, to repeat that famous line from his 1987 film Dirty Dancing. The article never ran, due to a PR mess-up. In retrospect, I think that my editor was less interested in Swayze than in bringing an end to my relentless badgering to let me interview him. … [Read more...] about The day I met Patrick Swayze