Andrew breaks from his summer holidays to join with Jon Holmes from TEAMtalk, Mike Brazier from The Life Junkies and David Cartlidge from to talk about the recent U21 European Championships in Denmark.

We talk about the Champions Spain and what made them so good. The spotlight then turns to the Olympic qualifiers Belarus and Switzerland and who impressed from them.

Also on the agenda is the plight of the English side and what went wrong in Denmark and if anything went well.

To close the show we look at the 2013 tournament in Israel. What can the Israeli people bring to the tournament and what young stars could we be looking at.

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As we look ahead to July’s Copa America, here’s the final part of our preview by the wonderful Ed Malyon, looking at Group C.

What could have been the most open and competitive group has been weakened by the fact that this won’t be a full Mexico side competing in the Copa America. As a CONCACAF member they are required to play their strongest squad possible in the Gold Cup being held in the USA in June. Therefore, the squad is largely made up of under-22s, and further affected by the drug suspensions handed out to several Mexican internationals in early June.

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The excellent Saurabh Ananth from takes a look at the new generation of youngster about to take on the Bundesliga big boys

A new, talented generation of German footballers is coming through the ranks from Hamburg to Munich and everywhere in between. Demand for homegrown talent within Germany is at an all time high with clubs in Germany much more willing to give young talents from lower leagues a chance than in most other countries.

Many academies have played a big part in this revolution. 1860 Munich, for example, have already made their mark on German football and many current Bundesliga players have come through the ranks there. And the German national team prospers from some of the most talented young players in the world. It was one of the youngest squads in the 2010 World Cup and pundits were rightfully questioning Germany’s chances. They were proven so wrong however and there’s no doubt that the 2014 World Cup in Brazil will feature even more young Germans.

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Here at GFS HQ we are always willing to help out fellow bloggers/writers when they have a good idea. So when Gareth Llewellyn-Stevens came to us with the idea of a Women’s Football podcast, we were happy to help out.

We are happy to introduce “Episode 1 of Women’s Football Weekly – World Cup Preview”

Gareth Llewellyn-Stevens is the host of the program on the show this week is John Burn-Murdoch, former editor of the Durham University student newspaper, as we preview the sixth Women’s World Cup starting on Sunday in Germany, running through the four groups, key players to watch out for, and our predictions for the knockout stages of the most-eagerly anticipated competitions in women’s football.

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“Don’t be fooled by the calendar.  There are only as many days in the year as you make use of.”  ~Charles Richards

Transfer negotiators at Arsenal take note. Most summers at the Emirates are spent embroiled in the latest drawn out transfer saga. More often than not it involves Cesc Fabergas, the “will he won’t he” drama that fills most windows has at least been complimented this Summer with the potential purchase of Ivory Coast winger Gervinho from French champions Lille.

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A Champions League winner and a history that shows he’s played for nine clubs. Stefan Kelly explains the career of Carlos Alberto

Playing at Fluminense, Porto, Corinthians (Where he was loaned to Fluminense again), Werder Bremen, Sao Paulo, Botafogo, Vasco da Gama, Gremio and now Bahia, Carlos Alberto de Jesus has the CV of a player close to retiring in his late thirties. Actually, Carlos Alberto is only 26 and has led a career of over-riding controversy. Since the age of 18, his talent and ability has co-incided with many problems with attitude that have forced move after move for the Brazilian.

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The draw was made today for the first two rounds of this seasons Europa League. As part of a new revolution called EUROPA LEGION – I thought it only fair one of us put the draw up for your viewing pleasure. read more »


Next up in Lee Garrity‘s excellent journey around the European lower leagues is Italy.

The Serie B season ended in Managerial movements and controversy as match fixing allegations rocked Italy’s 2nd tier as both teams in automatic promotion spots were put under the spotlight.

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Ronaldinho was at one point the greatest footballer on the planet. Stefan Kelly wonders if he’ll ever be that player again.

“I couldn’t have asked for a better return to the Brazilian league,” … “The focus is on winning the title, it’s a trophy I haven’t won it yet.”

These were the words used by the samba star upon his return to his homeland in the colours of Flamengo, Ronaldinho is clearly a man who does not lack ambition. However, his ambitions are not transferring to realities on the pitch at the Engenhao at the moment.

When using the phrase “be the same” I am not referring to the world-player of the year Ronaldinho but the player who can entice with his willingness, audaciousness and ability to mesmerize. It’s safe to say he hit the zenith of his career a long time ago, back in the days of linking up with Deco and Eto’o at Barca, but the rate at which it is collapsing is far too radical for a player of his quality. At the time of Pep Guardiola’s arrival, his off the pitch antics, poor performances and frequent injuries forced him to become the shadow of the man he previously was, this resulted in a switch to the San Siro.

At Milan he was a completely different player and was eventually shunned out to players like Pirlo and Seedorf amongst a,lot of younger talent, the San Siro was never going to be the place for him and therefore never was.

His profile remained extremely high throughout world football even after his move away from Barca. He remained one of Nike’s biggest assets and still managed to feature in their fabulous advert for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, this featured him using his talismanic skills to dance around defenders. It made him look like a god but the sad part of that story was that Dunga ended up not selecting the man dubbed “Player of the Decade”.

The following season at Milan was disappointing to say the least, in fact you could call it an absolute disaster for the Brazilian. His difficult adaptation to Italian football shone through, scoring 1 goal in 11 games and clearly lacking the pace that once made him so dangerous. Another move was needed for the once inhibited playmaker and the only way was down. Words can’t describe how happy I was when he decided to avoid a big-money move to Blackburn, watching him struggling to keep up with the pace and strength of the Premier League would depress me, in some ways it will forever make me remember Ronaldinho at his best when I think of the man. Instead he opted for the more romantic option, a homecoming to the nation that loved him for his samba style trickery and brashness, Brazil. He joined Flamengo after hometown club Gremio had to withdraw from the race for his signature as they lacked the necessary funds.

At the time of writing Ronaldinho has played 4 games, out of 8 shots has scored twice, and has laid on one assist

However, these are not telling half the story. Earlier this year Flamengo won the Rio State Championship aka the Carioca and to say Ronaldinho was disappointing would be an understatement, he seemed constantly uninspired and nowhere near living up to the inevitable hype surrounding him.

It’s fair to say Flamengo’s start to the Brasileirao has been an eventful one. Thiago Neves is quickly becoming one of the most exciting players in the league and fans also mourned as Dejan “Rambo” (or “Pet”) Petkovic played his last game for Fla. Most importantly though to the fans and journalists alike, Ronaldinho has risen from the dead and seems to be, for the first time in years, brace yourself.. playing well.

His scintillating performance during Fla’s 4-0 crushing of Avai displayed to the world how he still has the potential the world saw at PSG all those years ago. Scoring one and setting up one, he undoubtedly made all the headlines. This looks like it might have not been a once-off performance as the next week, he once again looked inspired against Bahia and scored once more for the black and red of Flamengo.

It may be that we will have to wait for his retirement farewell game before we see him in the colours of Brazil again but signs of Ronaldinho redeeming himself don’t look too far away and I don’t think anyone wouldn’t want that to happen.

If you enjoyed Stefan’s article why not follow him on twitter – or visit his website The Midfield Diamond



“Welcome to Tijuana…Tequila, Sexo y Marijuana” ~ Manu Chao

Please give a warm welcome to Alicia Ratterree, new to gibfootballshow and now our Mexican League corresspondent

In May, Club Tijuana Xoloitzcuintles de Caliente, better known as the Xolos (named after a breed of hairless dog native to Mexico), won promotion to the Mexican first division. For a team that only came into existence in 2007, it is a rapid ascent, but the Xolos are not a normal club. They play in a peripheral border city in the midst of a brutal drug war, their owner has a checkered past, and they are spending on promotion and new players like there is no tomorrow. Perhaps in this way, the Xolos are reflective of their community.

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