Filer's Football Briefs
FA Sidestep Pep
It has been revealed in an article by the New York Times that Pep Guardiola approached the FA in 2012 about replacing Fabio Capello as England manager, but wasn’t interviewed.
The master tactician was on a sabbatical from the game prior to taking the reins at Bayern Munich in 2013, and something about the lose-lose situation of managing England must have appealed to the Catalan.
The ever forward-thinking FA weren’t ready for another Johnny Foreigner at the helm however, so went for the game’s other famous master tactician in Roy Hodgson.
The rest, as they say, is histowy as England, of course, went on to win Euro 2012, before following it up with the world title in Brazil in 2014. Hodgson quit after retaining the European Championships this summer, and now drives lorries long distance.
NK Vrčevo Glavica, a fifth tier Croatian team from Zadar County, could be about to set a new Guinness World Record.
Founded in 1994 and based by the airport of popular holiday destination Zadar, the club has 21 registered players with the surname Števanja. As of yet, there is no instance of any team in world football fielding 11 players with the same surname in an official match, and indeed even Glavica only managed a meagre 10 in their last outing on Sunday.
For the Zadar Region Second Division game against Podgradina, their starting line-up consisted of a Luka, an Ante, one Bruno, a Kruno, a couple of Ivans, a Tomislav, a Stipan, and a pair of Josips, all with the second name Števanja. In fact even their coach shares the moniker.
Zeljko Števanja told 24sata “there can be up to fourteen or fifteen Števanjas at one match. We have three Ivan Števanjas in the side, as well as (pairs of) brothers Ivan and Stipan, Bruno and Ante, and Tomislav and Roko!”
Upon discovering they would be the first team ever to field a team of namesakes the coach added “We did not know that, that’s interesting. It has given us an idea. Maybe in the next match we will start with 11 Števanjas!”
Seems weird that that hadn’t crossed his mind before to be honest. Maybe the gene pool’s not too big in Glavica.
Neymar has notched five assists in Barcelona’s first two Champions League games this season, during the 7-0 victory over Celtic and the 2-1 win at Gladbach, which is as many as anyone got in the entire competition last season (Kingsley Coman and Alexis Sanchez).
Dilly-Ding Dilly-Dong Indeed
Of the nine English clubs to play in the UEFA Champions League, or 10 if you want to throw Everton in for their failed qualifying campaign in 2005, Leicester are the only team to win their first two games. Arsenal, Blackburn, Chelsea, Liverpool, Man City, Man United, Newcastle, and Spurs, all couldn’t.