The Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew admitted that his side had been "lucky" to beat Wolverhampton Wanderers, who "deserved a point at the very least." You needed the fingers of both hands to count the saves that the goalkeeper Tim Krul had to make at Molineux, including two impressive stops with his feet that kept Kevin Doyle and Steven Fletcher from scoring, and only a dubious call from the referee's assistant prevented a last gasp equalizer. It is still far too early in the season for the Premier League table to be much worth looking at, and Toon must navigate a course past Tottenham, both Manchester clubs and Chelsea in upcoming fixtures.
The sacking season is upon us. In the past couple of weeks, Newcastle has fired Chris Hughton and Blackburn Rovers has dismissed Sam Allardyce. It's difficult to believe that at least one more chairman won't mark the turn of the year by pulling the trigger -- Hughton and Allardyce were in mid-table, after all. West Ham's Avram Grant must be nervously running a finger inside his shirt collar.
What is it they say about being united by a common enemy? In the last few weeks England's soccer types have waved their fists as one at the BBC (for suggesting that FIFA's executive committee might not be squeaky clean), then turned their pitchforks, in perfect unison, on FIFA's executive committee (because, after choosing Russia and Qatar as 2018 and 2022 World Cup hosts, it might not be squeaky clean). Rarely can English soccer have seen such widespread collective vitriol.
There are times when football makes no sense. Two weeks ago, the initial reports that Newcastle United manager Chris Hughton was under pressure sounded absurd. Even more so when they were accompanied by rumors that owner Mike Ashley might be considering turning back to Joe Kinnear, an abrasive and unpopular relic of the 1990s who had been forced to leave the job in February 2009 after heart problems.
Little pleases Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson more than the chance to revel in victory over Liverpool. Perhaps nothing. He launches in like a hippo charging toward a mudhole, energetically rolling around and making as much of a splash as possible.
Sevilla coach Juande Ramos will remain at the Primera Liga side at least until the end of the season and has no intention of moving to Tottenham Hotspur, club president Jose Maria del Nido said on Tuesday.