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urban.spaceman

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  1. The comments on this from Liverpool fans. https://www.theguardian.com/football/2019/dec/07/leicester-city-title-race-brendan-rodgers-liverpool-wobble
  2. Brendan Rodgers’ reborn Leicester should not be overlooked in title race Paul DoyleSat 7 Dec 2019 20.00 GMT Foxes have the ability, squad depth and league-winning experience to snatch the crown if Liverpool wobble Brendan Rodgers has rejuvenated a Leicester City side who looked certain to have peaked with the 2015-16 title. Photograph: Plumb Images/Leicester City FC via Getty Images If Leicester beat Aston Villa on Sunday, it will be the first time they have won eight consecutive matches in the top flight. Winning at Villa Park will not be easy because Dean Smith’s team are better than their position in the Premier League table suggests. But then, so are Brendan Rodgers’s team. Leicester started the weekend as Liverpool’s closest pursuers but still not widely considered to be genuine challengers. Ridiculous. Granted, if the title race remains a sprint, not a marathon, then no one will catch Liverpool this season. But if they slow down or stumble, which is entirely conceivable, then it is not only Manchester City who could overtake them. Leicester are serious runners and could close the gap substantially this month, especially with Liverpool due at the King Power on Boxing Day straight after returning from the World Club Championship in Qatar. It is almost absurd what Leicester are doing, attempting to put a perky twist on Samuel Beckett’s most famous quote. Win again. Win better. Three years ago they became the most sensational champions of the Premier League era and now here they are again with a chance of following up that feat, against superior opponents and with more pizzazz. Consider, too, that it is just five years since the only previous time Leicester won eight league games in a row. That was in the Championship. Leicester have become a club who advance at pace. They reached their eight-in-a-row milestone last time by winning in Birmingham, and the scorer of the decisive goal was Jamie Vardy. He and Kasper Schmeichel are the two Leicester players who featured in that match and are likely to start at Villa Park. Wes Morgan is still an important squad member, too. The enduring influence of those players, plus extras such as Marc Albrighton and Christian Fuchs, could be critical if Leicester are still in contention in the closing weeks of the season. They, after all, have experience of winning the title. Unlike Liverpool, who will come under almost unbearable pressure as the prospect of ending 30 years of purgatory draws nearer. Rodgers knows that better than most. His role in all this should not be underplayed. He has had some lucky breaks at Leicester and not in the way word of a release clause in his contract got out just when Arsenal started sniffing around, which hardly hurt him before he agreed a nice new deal on Friday. There is also the fact Harry Maguire, whose departure to Manchester United in August was seen as a blow, is serving as a useful case study to any Leicester players who may be courted during the January transfer window, a parable showing that while there may be more money at other sides, the grass is not always greener. Most significantly, though, Rodgers inherited an excellent squad. But he has done excellent work with that squad. It seems unthinkable that with these players Leicester lost more matches than they won last season. The most striking difference between now and then is the rise in their intensity. Rodgers has made them tighter, sharper and smarter. Claude Puel began their transition from a counterattacking team to possession-based unit but did not understand his players well enough to see it through, leaving Leicester ponderous and prone to lapses in concentration. Vardy told L’Équipe in September that the team did not feel properly wired. “I felt the rhythm [of training] was too slow,” he said. “So much so that it was difficult for us to be fast and aggressive in matches. Everyone who plays sport knows that if you train one way, you cannot change radically when the competition starts. We tried our best but it wasn’t working, it was frustrating.” No more. Leicester pass and move with purpose now and, when out of possession, chase the ball voraciously. They have won more tackles than any other top-10 team in the league this season. Wilfred Ndidi, Caglar Soyuncu and Ricardo Pereira, in addition to being nifty with the ball, yearn for physical duels. But the movements are all coordinated, which is why Leicester have conceded fewer goals this season than any team in England’s top four divisions. And they are the only side not to concede a single goal from a set piece. They have scored more late goals than anyone else, testament to their stamina, spirit and Rodgers’s ability to make effective tactical or personnel changes during games. It is telling that in their past two matches Leicester have won without being at their best, with key contributions from substitutes. Kelechi Iheanacho struck in stoppage-time against Everton and James Maddison (not a substitute) scored late against Watford thanks to a burst by James Justin, who had replaced Harvey Barnes. Fuchs also performed well after stepping in for the injured Ben Chilwell. Dennis Praet and Demarai Gray were similarly influential after being introduced at Brighton three weeks ago. Leicester have greater strength in depth than many suppose and the capacity to reinforce in January. There are critical matches to come before then, though. Leicester’s seven games between now and New Year’s Day include a pre-Christmas trip to Manchester City followed by the showdown with Liverpool, who have an important Champions League date on Tuesday before jetting off to Qatar after next Saturday’s game against Watford, now managed by that old Leicester favourite, Nigel Pearson. Leicester are focused fully on domestic action and should not be overlooked by anyone.
  3. Being brutally honest... Left a job I hated to do conservation work in America. Wrote my first film script. Moved back home. Moved to New Zealand for 9 months. Got addicted to gambling. Moved back home and entered depression central. Got a job that I have hated ever since. Wrote another screenplay. Lost two of my closest family members to cancer and dementia in the space of 6 months. Moved to Cape Town during the season we won the league and had the ****ing time of my life. Spent 2 months in Botswana staying with my cousin, driving around Bots and Namibia, having a brilliant time. Moved back home the day of Brexit. Was offered my dream job in Cape Town. Dream job offer in Cape Town was rescinded because of South African immigration laws. Hit new depressive lows and put on a shit load of weight. Saw Leicester City beat Sevilla. Wrote my third screenplay. Still in the job I can't stand. Sister met the man of her dreams and married him this year. Making slow progress in 2019. Went to Poland to celebrate my sister's wedding. Went to Ireland to meet up with my Botswana family and meet new family members. Joined local filmmaking group. Making plans for 2020. Plenty of things I'm proud about but still a lot that keeps me depressed, and a lot that I'd change. Focussing on the future tho!
  4. Brendan Rodgers targeting trophies after signing £8 m-a-year Leicester City contract John Percy Brendan Rodgers is targeting trophies and breaking records after signing an £8 million-a-year contract with Leicester City. As revealed by Telegraph Sport on Friday, Leicester moved to tie down their highly-regarded manager by offering a lucrative extension until the summer of 2025 as a reward for nine months of progress. The 46-year-old was appointed in February and has overseen a remarkable resurgence at the King Power Stadium, guiding Leicester to second in the Premier League. Their league win over Watford on Wednesday night was their seventh in a row. Arsenal are understood to have considered Rodgers as one of their potential targets to replace Unai Emery, who was sacked last week, but Leicester are now focusing on a future with the Northern Irishman at the helm. Leicester had always intended to reward Rodgers for the impressive start to his tenure and contract negotiations had started last week. Rodgers initially agreed a 3½-year deal worth around £5 million a year when he moved from Celtic, with a £14 million release clause. He has now landed a significant pay rise, and the contract is likely to include an even bigger compensation fee due if he was to leave. He said: “We really want to establish ourselves near the top of the table in the next few years, and there is so much room and scope to develop here. “I hope in my time here that we can continue to break records and win trophies, and stay competing and fighting which is important. “I want this team remembered in 30 years’ time for the level of football and how competitive they are. That would be the ultimate for me. “I’m committing my work and life here to give it everything. I’ve got a real motivation.” Leicester will seek an eighth league win in a row at Aston Villa on Sunday and James Maddison is backing “world-class” striker Jamie Vardy to break his own goalscoring record. Vardy has scored for seven games in a row and is closing in on the milestone he set in 2015, when he found the net in 11 consecutive matches to claim a record previously held by Ruud van Nistelrooy. After the trip to Villa, the 32-year-old will play against Norwich City and Manchester City before the visit of league leaders Liverpool on Boxing Day. If his scoring streak continues, he would equal the record against Liverpool. “I would back him to do it, definitely. He doesn’t ever look like he’s not going to score,” said Maddison. “I sit next to him in the changing room and when I look at him, I just think he looks like he’s going to score every time. He’s always in the mood. He’s a goalscorer, a world-class finisher. “World class isn’t a term that you should throw around lightly but his finishing is. He scores goals at this level and that record of 11 games in a row is just unbelievable. “He’s only four away at the moment and I’ll keep trying to feed him – maybe I’ll even let him have the odd free kick!” Vardy’s goals have helped propel Leicester into second place, while the performances of £21 million signing Maddison earned him international recognition last month. Maddison insists Leicester deserve more credit for their excellent start and is focusing on keeping up the pressure on Liverpool. “Seven wins in a row is fantastic to hear and it’s great to be a part of. We’ve got real momentum at the minute and we don’t want that to stop,” he said. “Liverpool are top of the table and very rarely drop points so to stay up there at that level we have to keep winning. “Let’s hope we keep staying under the radar. We’ll keep going, people will or won’t talk but it doesn’t really matter because it won’t change our preparation for games. Eventually people might start talking about us but we won’t let that derail us because we’ve got a job to do.”
  5. There needs to be a racist orgy somewhere in-between all that.
  6. http://wfcforums.com/index.php?threads/pearson-out.56560/
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