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Bobby McMahon

Bobby McMahon

You can see me on Soccer Central most Mondays and Thursdays on Rogers Sportsnet in Canada. I write a regular column for and and frequently guest on various podcasts and radio shows.


The Top Stories of 2011 – 51 to 60

Written by on January 1, 2012 | 4 Comments »
Posted in General

On the December 27 and January 3 podcasts Eoin and I offer up out biggest twenty soccer stories of 2011. Over the next few days the blog will bring you another eighty stories that just failed to make it into the top twenty.  

51.    David Villa becomes Spain’s all time leading scorer after scoring twice against Czech Republic to take his total to 46 – two better than Raul’s 44. Unfortunately a leg-break at the FIFA Club World Cup in December placed into doubt when Villa will score his next international goal.

52.    Only the host of a Summer Olympics would build a $700M “temporary” stadium to house Athletics. Turning the stadium into a permanent facility will cost even more but beyond that London 2012 (or the Olympic Legacy board to be more accurate) has got itself embroiled in a fiasco that has yet to conclude over the long-term football operators. Undue influence, phone-hacking, private detectives, a decision made only to be revoked and re-tendered makes it a farce worthy of a west-end run.  

53.     After typically long drawn out negotiations Barcelona finally sign Chile international Alexis Sanchez from Udinese and Cesc Fabregas from Arsenal.

54.    The UEFA Champions League often throws us an unlikely semi-finalist. In 2011 it was Schalke who despite hovering in the lower reaches of the Bundesliga managed to beat Inter and Valencia before succumbing to Manchester United.

55.    The New York Red Bulls dressing room is a far from happy camp as Rafa Marquez publically criticizes his team mates and subsequently gets a suspension for voicing his opinion.

56.    A day of high-drama as the final day of the 2011 Premier League season focuses on the relegation spots. Things are not finally decided until the last few minutes of the season. When the smoke clears Birmingham and Blackpool are the clubs joining West Ham in the Championship for 2011/12.

57.     The long-standing “drama” of Arsenal’s ownership is settled when USA sports entrepreneur Stan Kroenke takes control of the club.

58.    The two-legged Copa del Rey is decided by an extra-time goal from Cristiano Ronaldo. Later as the victorious squad parades the cup from atop of a bus defender Sergio Ramos shows why he is not a goalkeeper after he drops Spanish Cup from a great height and it is then run over by the bus.

59.    West Ham are relegated but the feisty Scott Parker wins Footballer of the Year by English Football Writers Association. Later in the season after signing for Spurs, Parker becomes another in a line of “best players ever” to play for Harry Redknapp and joins his over-the-top eleven.

60.    Porto wins Portuguese League without losing a game and they also win the Europa League.

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4 responses to “The Top Stories of 2011 – 51 to 60”

  1. Alberta Gooner says:


    Interested to get your take on the FA’s decision on the Luis Suarez race-baiting incident with Patrice Evra. There is quite a lively debate happening on my blog as well as on Twitter. Are you going to weigh in on it?

  2. Ed Gomes says:

    Congrats to Villa, but the leg break could have been the worst or best thing that happened to him. We’ll have to wait and see what the answer will be.
    I truly believe that Barca was going to sell Villa this winter. I also believe that Chelsea would have been his landing spot. For some reason Pep is having a hard time finding and sticking with a forward/striker. Although I always though Ibra was never a fit, Villa should have been. Yet he’s found himself out of the lineup plenty.
    Real feels that Barca doesn’t have the money to sign Neymar, which knowing history, it’s just baiting in order for them to overspend (lol). But it would be necessary for Villa and his wages to be moved in order for the Neymar sigining to be, let’s say cost effective. Granted, money usually doesn’t come into play when you’re talking about Barca and Real.

    Countries and Cities never get a return on the Olympics or World Cups.
    I can only assume that Qatar’s WC get and stadium proposals are in the top 20. I have plenty of comments on that.

  3. Soccerlogical says:

    ED – I think the reason Pep has trouble “integrating” marquee strikers in their prime like Ibra or Villa is because of Messi.. plain and simple.

    Regardless of how much of a team player a world class striker is willing to be, it is difficult and hard on any top striker’s ego to be on a team where you constantly get outshined by the best player in the world and are constantly reminded (by media and coach) that the team is built and plays around Messi. That is why it has been easier to integrate “promising” and 2nd tier players than an Ibra and Villa and you see Sanchez and Pedro more willing to play the role.

    PS I am convinced that David Luiz of Chelsea is half retarded.

    PPS “Beckham is leaning towards LA Renewal”

    BULL SH%!…. Ancelloti simply convinced PSG that they don’t need the dimwitted hair model and his media circus is all.

  4. Ed Gomes says:

    Becky’s is only good for one thing and that’s media exposure and merchandising. Not to just his own, but the teams and leagues benefit. Meaning his landing point should be next to Anelka or in the Arabic nations. I don’t even think that he would do anything for Russia. He’s also run his course in the US.

    I also agree in regards to Pep’s problem.

    I’ve dealt with Luiz and his moments of madness with Benfica for quite a while. In Portugal those moments didn’t kill Benfica, they will kill Chelsea.
    By the way, the #1 moment of 2011 is Villas Boas still being Chelsea manager at the end of it.

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