World of Sport: How to make 2015 better than 2014

Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Kane. Photo: Adam Davy/PA Wire.
Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Kane. Photo: Adam Davy/PA Wire.
Have your say

I haven’t enjoyed football too much so far this season. Too many bad Posh performances, useless pundits, awful referees, Twitter loons and boring teams.

But things that would improve my enjoyment in 2015 include...

1) Making all pundits/commentators pass the referee exam. Too many don’t know the laws and thus mis-inform the viewing public.

2) Making sure all Premier League/Football League officials have passed the referee exam. From what I’ve seen so far this season I’m not convinced all of them have.

3) Forcing match officials to explain decisions after a game. You never know it might ‘humanise’ them and make their regular errors easier to understand.

4) Banning the sacking of managers during the season. I could have told Jeremy Peace, West Brom’s terrible chairman, that Alan Irvine would prove to be a poor appointment so why should he escape the consequences of his disatrous decision?

5) If you can’t/won’t ban the loan transfer system, at least stop clubs borrowing players from other clubs in the same division. It’s just wrong that the manager of, say, Arsenal can influence the relegation battle by lending a player to, say, QPR.

6) If you train hard all week and score a goal against a team you used to play for, celebrate. Perhaps not in the style of Emmanuel Adebayor, but no-one should begrudge you enjoying what must be the best feeling in football.

7) Football fans starting to accept opinions that don’t match their own. When I call Chesterfield a ‘mid-table’ team I am stating a fact not delivering an insult worthy of a stream of abuse on Twitter.

8) Striker Harry Kane (right) maintaining his outstanding form for Spurs. He has power and strength, scores from all distances and can see a pass. He could just be the real deal.

9) Sean Dyche winning manager-of-the-year as that would probably mean Burnley have stayed up. Like many others I wrote them off in August.

9) Sky Sports stopping using the phrase ‘Sky Sources’. We all know you’re following up stories in the written media.

10) Removing Robbie Savage, Gary Lineker, Mike Jones, Andre Marriner, Karl Henry and MK Dons from football altogether.

And most importantly of all, Posh winning enough games and playing enough attractive football to lighten the mood at London Road.

I hope chairman Darragh MacAnthony’s unusual ploy of reacting to some dismal, unappealing displays by carting 30 under-achievers off to Spain for five days works.

It’s a fine gesture from a chairman trying his best to improve results and morale, but I’d be amazed if it leads to enough improvement to save the season completely.

If Posh do fail in their stated objectives let’s hope they go down with a blaze of attacking football rather than some of the half-hearted displays seen so far this season.

Have your say on World of Sport: by emailing, or on Twitter @PTAlanSwann

Hero of the week: George Boyd

I owe George Boyd a huge apology. Earlier this season I decided that Burnley would be relegated from the Premier League without winning a game. I stated that they had no hope if Boyd was to be their marquee signing. Over Christmas Boyd scored at Manchester City and at Newcastle. I guess I was wrong for a change.

Gerrard is just like Phil Neal

Oh good we will now be subjected to five months of lazy pundits/commentators telling us how ‘great’ Steve Gerrad has been for Liverpool over the last 15 years. I dread to think what chief creep Martin Tyler has planned for when he next commentates on Liverpool.

Gerrard (above) deserves a good send-off from Anfield for his long service, but let’s not go overboard with the plaudits.

The midfielder is a decent Premier League player, but he’s no Luis Suarez, Alan Hansen or Kenny Dalglish, true titans of Anfield, and the game in general.

Gerrard is more on a par with Phil Neal, another long-serving Liverpool player who was steady without being great and who played many times for England without reaching ‘world-class’ status.

And another thing...


The sheer excitement of the New Year’s Day games shot a hole in the arguments of Manchester United moaners Wayne Rooney (above) and Luis Van Gaal. They want fewer festive matches because the players are ‘tired and can’t peform to their best’.

Well if Spurs 5, Chelsea 3 and Manchester City 3, Sunderland 2 and Newcastle 3, Burnley 3, are consequences of fatigue I’d make the top teams play even more matches next Christmas.


Anyway the Premier League teams were always going to rest their players for the third round of the FA Cup, that ‘magical day’ which these days means reserve teams, low crowds and little excitement.