Friday, 30 November 2007

Leciester v Leeds & Sale v Worcester

Got to see two matches at the weekend on the tv. Both interesting encounters when you consider it two of the top teams vs top of the bottom teams.

A friend of mine, a Sale fan, went to Worcester to watch the game, he said it wasn't a very friendly places, some of the Worcester supporters were quite abusive towards the end of the game. The lots of the Worcester fans left with 10 minutes to go!! Put it down to them not being proper rugby fans. The other place I heard that is very unfriendly to visiting supporters is Gloucester. In Gloucester they don't have that excuse.

Anyway the game. Sale fans must be thank fully they now have a decent kicker in the shape of Luke McAllister. Charlie 'I couldn't hit the side of a barn' Hodgson was back to his usual England form and nearly blew the game for Sale. I don't understand why Stuart Barnes has such a total hard on for him. He keep witting on about his 'fizzing right hand' didn't mention his flapping right foot. Anyway McAllister looks a quality player, but we all knew that already. Some great attacking lines, good kicking from hand and penality kicks, plus his tackling was pretty good as well. Worcester tired to fight back but Luke's boot keep Sale ticking the score board over and took the fight out of them eventually. I don't think Worcester will go down they showed a lot of fight plus they have some experienced players in the shape of Rico Gear turning up soon.

With regards to Leeds however I don't think they will last. I believe they played as well as they could against a second string Leicester side and was still convincingly beaten. varndell score some typical wingers tries, yes the first one was knock on! However he still picked up the ball placed it down and left the decision to the officials which is the right thing to do. Been a lot of calls for him to be picked for England again. I totally agree he is a talent and has great potential, and the only way to nurture that potential is get him playing the big games and get him the best coaching. Interesting to see he is play this weekend on the wing, seems the new coach is giving him a good run out and has changed tactics from last year of the two power wingers.

This weekend Leicester Vs Sale. All the stars for both sides should be an interesting match up.
I predict a Leicester win as it at their home ground, plus I believe they have the depth of squad to change the game in the latter stages if needed. In strategy writings they say fight the ordinary with the ordinary to gain a level playing field and then use the extra ordinary to break the battle and win. So save your best moves to break the games, or bring on subs or reserves to finish off the fight.

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Heineken Cup & Challenge Cup

What a great weekend for English clubs in Europe. Only lost 1 game and draw 1 game everything else a win. Welsh clubs only managed 1 draw in the Heineken cup and lost all the others. The French clubs going 50-50 on win-lose. I think there is a certain amount of buoyancy in the English clubs after the world cup and quite a bit of low morale in the French and Welsh sides.

In terms of strategy indicates the possible impact of morale in the English clubs due to the world cup and the lack of morale in the other clubs.

I read a great article on planet rugby about the French and English clubs.,18259,3551_2891783,00.html

I thought that the French clubs had a similar salary cap to the English, I thought it was a European directive!! Obviously I was wrong, but it doesn't seem to be helping the French by having the extra money available.

Please to see Leicester win well away from home and was very interested in hearing from the new coach, that he wanted them to play smarter not harder. I think Leicester may have gotten a little too carried away with the power rugby concept in the past. Nice to see a tactical style of play coming to work with the raw power the Leicester has in its squad.

What a great result for Bristol this weekend. Keeping Stade de France to Nil is a no mean feat, I hope they can carry on with his form in the rest of the Heineken and EDF cups.

Back to the normal Premiership this week and Leicester have got Leeds. I am hoping for a good score, be interested too see who is in the side to play against Leeds.

Tuesday, 13 November 2007

Start again

Realized I haven't blogged much. Missed blogging the entire world cup, just got busy basically. So I aim to start again maybe keep the blogs more frequent, but slightly shorter to keep myself interested.

So the World Cup. Who would have though England would have made it to the final! Who would have though Ireland & Wales wouldn't have made it past the group stages. Now the Heineken Cup has start lots of players and team want to make amends. Big surprises this week were Clermont Auv thrashing the the Scarlets. Clermont do have a lot of new players including a few big stars. Good start for them. Leicester lost!! That did surprise me, I think they are going to go through a bit of a change over the next few weeks with a new coach. Hope they can get back to winning ways soon. Roll on the rest of the Heineken Cup. I believe it showed in the World Cup knock out stages that European teams are use to the high intensity knock games in comparison to the south hemisphere teams. It is a great competition for us all.