Author Archives: Leanne Smith

The 2 Wigan wonderkids who could have a major impact on the club’s season

With Wigan finishing 18th in last season’s Championship, it’s safe to say that the Latics will be hungry for a better League campaign and a higher finish in the table going into 2019/20.

Most teams are looking elsewhere this time of year and trying to sign a few players that can improve their line up. However, Wigan’s manager, Paul Cook suggests that the Latics’ blossoming youth team is something worth shouting about. So who could make a difference in the upcoming season? 

Scott Smith

The teenage midfielder is captain of the under 18’s Wigan side. He has had a quality run with the youth team, but yet to be called up for first team responsibilities. He is making a name for himself within his squad. All it would take is for Cook to take a chance on him and have him on the bench a couple of times, therefore easing him into the first team as a substitute to start off with.

The 18-year-old has also just been named in “The 11” award, which recognises 11 young players with achievements on and off the pitch. The academy manager congratulated the youngster and said, he has “set the standard” for the next group of Under 18’s. 

Callum Lang

The 20-year-old has already been named as a first team player but has not had the chance to show Wigan fans what he is capable of. The striker started his youth at Liverpool, before moving to Wigan and was eventually called up to the first team. Afterwards, he was sent straight out on loan to Morecambe in 2017, where he managed 30 appearances and 10 goals.

When the 2018/19 season approached, he was loaned to Oldham Athletic where he worked wonders. In 42 appearances he managed 13 goals. He should be given the chance to see if he can prove himself for Wigan’s first team, especially if no one puts an offer in for him over the summer. 

Wrexham would be silly not to try sign Salford City’s Danny Lloyd – agree?

Salford City fans were excited by a tweet yesterday, that suggested Danny Lloyd has gained interest from Wrexham. 

The tweet basically explained that Wrexham have enquires about the midfielder. With all parties interested, however, the 27-year old’s wages may be too high for Wrexham to pay. 

Lloyd was with Stockport in the 2016/17 season and he finished as the clubs top goal scorer. He managed 29 goals and 19 assists that saw him earn a place in the team of the season. When his contract was up, Peterborough pounced on him and he appeared 37 times for the club, managing 13 goals before he joined Salford on a three-year deal. The midfielder has made 35 appearances for the club and managed 3 goals, and if Wrexham manages to pull off the transfer, he could be a crucial part to their team. 

Wrexham have gone from strength to strength in the National League. They finished 10th out of 24 teams in 2017/18 and an impressive 4th in 2018/19. I hope that the deal can be negotiated as Lloyd would be a great attacking midfielder for the club. It’s been proven he can also help them in the goals department too. Fans think it is unlikely, however, stranger things have happened. 

2 cheaper defenders Man City should look at other than Leicester City’s 90m Maguire

Harry Maguire has had interest from Man City and Man United this transfer window but the £90 million fee might have put City off.

City wants to strengthen their back four with Vincent Kompany leaving, and it was rumoured that Maguire was one of their biggest targets. Leicester have put out their asking price for the defender and it’s high. 90 million high.

Some are saying it’s too overpriced for the England man, but it’s apparently not put Manchester United off. With City thinking twice about Maguire, there are other options that are cheaper and better value for money. 

Joao Cancelo

Now it has been rumoured that Cancelo is already being looked at by City, and may be moving to the next steps of joining the Manchester side. If this is all true, I think it’s a better option than Maguire. The Juventus star is apparently valued at around 50 million. That would be a cheaper option and if he turns out to be at the standard Pep Guardiola wants, it could be a bargain. 

Virgil Van Dijk

This might seem like high hopes for the blues but he’s proved to be one of the best defenders around. The 27-year-old has said before that he would be open to a transfer if Liverpool were to lose the Champions League final.

We all know that they did manage to beat Tottenham. However, if City were looking at Maguire, they could pay the same amount for Van Dijk and have a better player in my opinion.

He might be tempted with City’s record, I think it’s just the Champions League win that’s keeping him at Liverpool. 

2 Man City players that will be the difference for the Lionesses tonight

The Lionesses face their second group match tonight against Argentina. 

England managed to bag a win against Scotland in their opening group game, and everyone’s hoping they can do the same tonight. Phil Neville has also said that because of the rivalry between the men’s team’s, it gives the women even more of a hunger to win too. Argentina had an unexpected start to their World Cup campaign in a goalless draw against Japan. I think it’s safe to say that everyone thought Japan would easily win as they’ve been in the previous two World Cup finals, and Argentina effectively had no team three years ago. 

After the Lionesses won on Sunday, fans were quick to say that the team had some work to do to better their performance. However, before the match kicks off tonight at 8 pm, I’ve picked two City players that I think will make a difference to the England team.

Now that the first game nerves are out of the way, I think England are looking at a couple of goals at least tonight… 

Ellen White

The striker managed to bag one goal against Scotland when given the chance, and I think more opportunities will be created tonight for the Man City star to take. The 30-year-old only announced she’d be signing for City in May 2019, however, with a lot of to-be teammates on the England side, she may also be out to impress them too. 

Steph Houghton

The most obvious option, I know. I’ve not only picked her for her skill and determination, but I’ve also picked her mainly for her leadership.

In the opening group games, there’s been a lot of VAR controversy. Even in England’s first game, their first goal came from a penalty awarded due to the assist of the video referee. Steph Houghton will have to keep her side from arguing and surrounding the referee in any cases tonight, as I think VAR is being used too much in these games. 

I would have included Nikita Parris in this selection because she had an amazing start, and I think she’ll only get better.

The 2 Rochdale wonderkids who should be given more game time next season

Rochdale finished their 2018/19 campaign in League one at 15th place, but who can manager Brian Barry-Murphy rely on to better their next season?

There’s a couple of young players that Rochdale may benefit from seeing in their pre-season squad to see how they cope. Ramsbottom, Blackburn and Bradford are just three teams on the list of friendly’s before their league matches start, and here are two teenagers I think should get a look in…

Bradley Wade

The 17-year-old keeper is very young to be getting started in the first team, but every player must start somewhere. Wade has been a product of Rochdale’s youth and has been with the club since he was 15. He’s been on the bench a few times although it would be good to see him in the first team at some point, just to see how he manages. It’s always nice to see a keeper breakthrough the ranks and given the right guidance, could be a great back up for a few seasons.

Daniel Adshead

Another 17-year old who has come through Rochdale’s youth teams. He was 14 when he started training with the first team, which is impressive. He’s also played for England’s under 18’s 3 times.

In September 2017 he also became the clubs youngest ever player to start for the club in an EFL Trophy game, Adshead was only 16 at the time. I think he’d benefit from some more starts but could be a great midfielder for Rochdale. 

2 Bolton Wanderers youngsters who could have a major impact on the club’s 19/20 season

You could literally scroll through all the bad off the pitch news for Bolton Wanderers. Furthermore, yesterday morning the club has released a list of players either contracted to the Club as professionals or third-year scholars. 

The list has revealed that only six senior players remain but with that being said, could any of the youngsters come through for the team?

There’s still a while before the new season starts. With Bolton being relegated last season, along with all the financial struggles, there’s a chance that the list could get smaller if some players gain interest from other clubs.

I’m a Bolton fan myself and along with others, I am glad to see that cuts have been made with some players. We need to start small and build again, with players who have the passion to play for us.

Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t play for free either like some players experienced last year. However, now that there’s some new ownership news coming to light, I would like to think we can return to the team we used to be. With the players we have got, however, which youngsters could make an impact on the season if they stay?

Luca Connell

The 18-year-old wonder kid has been brought through Bolton’s youth since 2010, and he can play as a defender and as a midfielder. The talented teenager made his debut for the trotters in January 2019. It was in an FA cup tie in which he came on as a substitute.

He was started against Bristol in the same cup later that month, and he impressed when he assisted Mark Beevers in the only Wanderers goal. Connell was eventually rewarded with a league match start against Reading, and now his scholarship has been extended for a year. He’s even played for the Republic of Ireland’s under 17’s, 18’s and 19’s.

I think he is exactly what Bolton needs with the skill at his age, and he has the passion for the club after staying with them for so long. However, Celtic are reportedly looking at the teenager, and with other Premiership clubs also supposedly looking into a deal with Connell, it wouldn’t be surprising if he took an offer. 

Dennis Politic

Fans may argue with me about this suggestion, but the 19-year-old was with Salford City on loan up until early this year, and the midfielder managed 2 goals in 9 appearances for the club.

He’s yet to play for Bolton’s first team, but the Romanian may get a look in now that the squad has been reduced. The only problem he may face is that he came back from Salford with a shoulder injury. If he can get past that, maybe he could be a huge part of Bolton’s new season. 

‘Yes, I love this straight away to business 3-0’ Man United fans feeling optimistic ahead of their opening Fixture

A hot topic for next season’s Premier League is how will Man United will perform after a disappointing end to the 2018/19 season.

The Red Devil’s only managed a 6th place finish with 66 points. The reds need to aim for around the 80-90 points to even be in with a chance of getting back into the title race as their rivals, City, won the league and finished on 98 points. Liverpool managed 97 points and Chelsea finished on 72 points.

Hopefully with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer trying to build his team, United will be able to return to their old ways and fans will be celebrating again. With that being said, Premier League fixtures were released today and it’s been revealed that United will open their campaign by playing Chelsea at home on Sunday the 11th of August.

The following week they will travel to Wolves but it’s the opening game that has fans talking on Twitter this morning…

Season Prediction: Man City Women’s Success Hinges On Lioness World Cup Campaign

With Manchester United Women being promoted to the Women’s Super League, will they cause problems for Man City?

Possibly. Nick Cushing has such a strong side, they managed to finish second in their league last season on 47 points. Arsenal ended their campaign on 54 points putting them as Champions, and finishing in third under City was Chelsea who had 42 points. This proves just how tight the league is and how the top tier can change quickly. 

My prediction for next season is that City will be fighting with Arsenal for the top spot once again. I hope they can manage to win the Super League but there are a few things to consider before that can happen.

For example, a lot of the Blues squad are out in France right now for the World Cup. Club captain, Steph Houghton is also leading her national side, players such as Karen Bardsley, Demi Stokes, Jill Scott and Ellen White are also out there at the minute hoping to prove that they are the best. What if any of them pick up an injury or come back to the Women’s League seeming unfit? It would sure cause City a few setbacks. 

The other factor being Manchester United. They have just been promoted to the WSL and, will be out for a good first season in the league as they smashed the Championship. I’m not saying the reds will do the same and go straight to the top of this league too. However, I do predict that they will cause a few problems for the likes of Man City, Arsenal and Chelsea and they will be in the mix for a top table finish. 

I’m wishing the Lionesses all the luck in the world and hope they can bring it home but, when the City players get back into training and start their new campaign, I hope they can maintain the same standards they already have.

I think the World Cup will depend on the mindset of some of the City women, if they do win, they may be hungry to win a title when they come home. If they don’t, they’ll either be feeling deflated or it will drive them to do well next season. 

Here’s Two Reason’s Why Oldham Athletic Fan’s Should Be Excited By The Thierry Henry Backed Binade

The Latics have been without a manager since Paul Scholes left back in March but they may have found their answer in Laurent Banide. 

Oldham fans found out yesterday that the Frenchman has signed a one year deal with the club, following Pete Wild’s temporary stint and this could be exciting if the 51-year-old can work his magic. Thierry Henry has previously backed Banide stating that he was one of the most influential coaches in his playing career. This has got to be promising for Oldham and their fans.

Henry’s backing aside, what else can he bring to the club? 


Laurent has spent the last decade managing various clubs in the Middle East. Just a few include Monaco, Al-Nast, Al-Dhafra and Al Orobah. It’s not just managing that he’s been a part of, he’s also been a big part of a lot of clubs coaching staff and with him playing such a big part, he’s now been managing since 1990.

The long list of clubs year after year may be a worry that he hasn’t been able to stay at a club for a long period of time, although if he does well in this deal, he could be tempted to stay with Oldham. 

Chairman’s Backing 

Once the deal was done, Oldham chairman, Abdallah Lemsagam said he was delighted to welcome the Frenchman and, that he was looking forward to working with him in the 2019/20 campaign. He believes he has chosen the right man to take his club forward, and if he can deliver this would mean more money to invest in players and transfers, better results and hopefully climbing the league. 

‘The Media Really Hate The Fact He’s At Man City’ Twitter Reacts To Guardiola’s Supposed Sabbatical

Pep Guardiola is known for the pressure he puts on himself and his teammates in order to get results, only now it’s been reported that the City boss could be taking a break.

Don’t worry City fans, if he does decide to leave his managerial role, it won’t be until at least next season. Guardiola signed a new contract in 2018 that would keep him in Manchester until 2021. However, after winning three trophies with City last season, it’s said that he has put too much pressure on himself and the stress has left him needing a “break.” Whether he stays or goes, he does want to get the blues a Champions League trophy to add to their collection. If he can manage that goal next season, he may take his sabbatical then. As the news broke on Twitter, football fans were quick to voice their opinions.

A twitter predicts page also put out a poll to see whether City fans thought Pep would win the UCL, and then leave or stay and win the Premier League again.

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