Monthly Archives: July 2016

Big Mac, Fat Sam and the FA Dug-out Handgrenade

TEESSIDERS know how to nurse a grudge, to feed and water it regularly and to nurture it until it sinks deep roots in a dense jungle of historic animosities.

Barely a day goes by without something rustling in the undergrowth, some seemingly remote movement tugging away at trailing tendrils that quickly connect to still smarting scars of grievance.  A brief mention of Rick Parry on Sky Sports Premier League Years can make the hackles rise for instance.  The dog hides if it hears a passing reference to Christian Ziege.  Or, for some, Peter Beagrie in the studio for a televised Boro game can send them racing through the emotional gears. And that was 30 years ago.

So the news that Sunderland had growled at the FA over the approach to Sam Allardyce had some Teessiders swiftly simmering with retro-anger.

Continue reading Big Mac, Fat Sam and the FA Dug-out Handgrenade

Blazing Squad: Aitor Draws Up Red Hot List

AT some point in the next few weeks Aitor Karanka is going to sit down with a piece of paper and write down the 25 names he will submit to the Premier League as the Boro squad. It won’t  be easy.

We already have 24 senior professionals in the squad with the club looking to bring in more – a keeper, a striker, a right back at least… possibly a left back as cover, maybe another centre-back…  – and everyone that arrives will effectively push one of the existing players out of the magic circle. There some tough decisions to be made.


And his hands are tied by some strict rules: the number of home grown and foreign players is limited. So there may be a lot of crossing out as he tries to jiggle his resources.  Here’s a long read I did on the rules around the squad and some factors to consider. 

If you want o start work on your own list of definites for the 25, feel free…