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The Guardian. Hello and welcome to The Guardian Football Weekly, International Week, thanks if you're still listening. A pleasant run around for England against San Marino, who's given themselves a better chance to be on that plane to Wembley and who's right, Lineker or Clendenning, as they furiously debate pre qualifiers for the minnows to earn the right to play the greatest nation in the history of football elsewhere. Where does John McCain's overhead kick register on the Sinclair spectrum? Well, score a lovely goal.
Ireland score a goal to, in fact, in the Women's Champions League, Chelsea, somehow Wolfsburg and Manchester City lose.
In Barcelona, there's FIPA, Scott Brown in in Aberdeen and Hearts getting dispatched by Bororo Rangers. And there's Barrys proof that Newcastle United are better than Everton. Someone's made a lovely Prototyp football jumper. Ian Holloway has his say on Mark has been terrible, humble and will answer your questions, as always on today's Gardian Football Weekly on the panel today.
Welcome, Barry Glendinning. Hey, Max, how are you? I'm very good, thank you. Fay Carruthers. Hi, Max and Susie Ratke, welcome. Hey, guys.
All right, let's start at Wembley, then. England five, San Marino nil. Andy Rooney saying it was at best some welcome cardiovascular exercise. A brisk walk around north west London while some men in white shirts shouted in Italian FAI, you were there. Did you have a nice time?
It was very nice. Thank you. I think the debate was how many England we're going to score and I think five nil was nice. And to be honest, it was better. Detainee the summary no goalkeeper that kept that scoreline down. He was absolutely fantastic and quite clearly did not want Jesse Lingard to score because a couple of fansite well, two or three shots from Jesse Lingard, amazing saves from a detainee. And Jesse told me after the match that he'd actually gone up to the goalkeeper and said, you just don't want me to score.
So, yeah, it was it was a walk in the park, if you like. But it was interesting watching which players, Sean, I thought may amount, particularly in the first half, was was absolutely fantastic and just just ran the show. Janesville Will was it was impressive. I was pleased for him getting his first England goal as well, bearing in mind he's come up through the through the ranks and been a stalwart for England over the years in the in the age group.
So, yeah, decent performance in the end. But I think Dominic Calvert Lewin is going to be really frustrated with himself for having not scored at least a hat trick. And I'm sure Ollie Watkins was sat on the bench on Harry Kane, more importantly, looking at Wayne Rooney's goalscoring record thinking, get me on there.
Come on. Are you on first name terms with all the England players or just Jesse? No, I'd said Jesse Lingard first, so I then thought it was OK to say, Jesse, you're not you know, I am not that kind of wanky journalist that does that.
So, yeah, James will still play well, and I suppose.
I mean, it's difficult, you expect Henderson and Rice will play in that, too, but does he offer something a bit different, Susie and he and he could score free kicks as well? You know, people are quite important for England generally at major tournaments.
Yeah. I mean, it's hard to take a performance against San Marino with with too much store. But overall, I mean, his free kick that ruled the post I thought was was really, really tasty. And that long distance, that long distance ball in is is really, really helpful.
Barry, did you love watching the game of football and did you think that San Marino did themselves proud?
I thought some of them did themselves proud. I didn't particularly enjoy the game. All right. But their goalkeeper had at the game of his life and won. I'm sure he will never forget.
Dude, telling him I thought looked great. And and and we need competition in that area, don't we?
Oh, yeah. We need we need even more players to choose from. Is given Gareth Southgate another headache. But I tell you what you watch dude Bellingham, he never looks like he's making an effort. He's just beautiful to watch and he just kind of stands there. He's not even moving that fast. And he's just when you watch Foden, it's it's an energetic kind of effort. If that makes sense. You watch him and he just kind of glides and doesn't look like he's trying at all.
I mean, he's just a fantastic player for the future.
Whether or not he'll I mean, he could be the wildcard that that Gareth Southgate picks to take to the Euros. But at seventeen, you just know that he's got a lot more in him going forward. So, you know, and I think Gasol said before, he he's desperate to see what he's like at twenty, twenty one. You know, if he's like this is seventeen. So maybe it's a tournament too early for him.
Bearing in mind the hate this phrase, I'm so sorry for using it, but I've been looking endorsements of riches.
Isn't it just producer Joel was trying to find some statistics for this game. He's really earth. Quite the boring statistics. Here we go. This is only the second time in England's last 237 competitive internationals there have been six players in the starting eleven with five or fewer caps. I mean, you're not going to run into the pub when it opens and yell that stat to anyone. Dominic Calvello in the first Everton player to score a brace for England since Wayne Rooney in June 2004.
James Ward Prowse, the tenth difference, Southampton player to score for the England senior team and the first to do so in a competitive game since Ryan Bertran. Anyway, we've had the chat about pre qualifiers before. Suzy, what do you think about it before? Barry tells us that we're arrogant England fans. Are you an arrogant England fan, Suzy?
Oh, definitely not. I mean, the thing that got me is this this whole oh, you know, the summer, you know, players will be telling their grandkids about this game and then it will be will be able to talk about his saves from Lingard and Chilwell and Calvert Lewin for years and years to come. I find that really sickening because it's not like this summer, you know, team haven't played big teams before. They actually play big teams fairly regularly and of where England rank in the name of big teams.
You know, Calvert, Lewin and and Lingard are not the necessarily at the moment the big names that are going to stand out for them. You know, they they've played Germany, they play Belgium, they've played the Czech Republic like they're not they're not not used to playing the games. I think it's it's hard to say that they should they shouldn't have the opportunity to. Yes. They're terrible. Yes. They don't win. What is the point in football if everyone can't play it?
And why not like when they do get that big win, when they when they do or draw or go against one of the one of the big sides? I mean, the whole world is going to celebrate. Right. That's going to be incredible to watch. And I don't ever want us to be denied of the opportunity of that happening. From my point of view, I've got no problem with the little teams playing the big guns and doing so regularly, like I think it.
Yes are an embarrassing school lines in there, but it makes for makes for an entertaining game for everyone in the long run.
Well, I have no problem with them playing the big guns. I also would have no problem with them having to pre qualify. But it should be their decision, not Englands England, obviously, you know, telling other countries what's best for them that's worked well for you in the past, hasn't it? And quite apart from the fact that England haven't won anything for 55 years, and quite apart from the fact that a significant number of England's travelling support are amongst the most obnoxious anti-social football fans on the planet.
The arrogance of deciding what's best for other countries who want to play football is just breathtaking. And what's even more breathtaking is that you don't it's so arrogant, you don't even realise it's arrogant.
You know, who are England to decide what's best for other countries, you know, your argument seems to be and Gary Lineker argument seems to be that they're floating around a football atmosphere, you know, stinking the place up, never contributing anything of note. What of England contribution of note in the past half a century? Nothing. See, I'm.
I don't really I don't know why you think that I'm so desperate for these. I don't really mind if they happen or not.
I just wonder if, you know, what do you for me are symptomatic of everything that is utterly delusional, delusional about the England football sport. OK, OK. Are the England media cheerleaders. Oh, so that's why I'm directing my ire squarely at you here.
But you know, it could be any number of England fans or England media cheerleaders, but you have to be in front of me on my laptop screen.
You you you think there should be less football than you, Barry.
And we had that you know, that climate change episode, the last part we did, where there should be less football. It seems to me this you know, if we trying to find games that probably don't need to happen.
Arguably, this one is and it's it's interesting, if England fell down to the bottom of the rankings, I wouldn't mind if we had to have pre qualifiers.
You know, I've already said I have no problem with pre qualifiers, but it should be their decision, not yours or not Spain's or not Germany's fate.
Yeah, I mean, I see Barry's point completely. I get that. But I'm with you, Max. I don't care that much. I know that sounds really awful, but if they if they're pre qualifiers, great. If they're not, I mean, my schedule's packed already with football. I probably won't notice that sounds dreadful, but.
But what about this one about this and I haven't really thought this through these tiny countries don't get to World Cups. And actually, if you happen to be a tiny country in Europe, you are disproportionately less likely to get to a World Cup than if you are a tiny country in CONCACAF or Oceania or whatever. You know, why don't bet.
Other nations league is sort of seen a way in for smaller countries to actually perhaps get to a major tournament, have some kind of lower ranked, I don't know, not like a pity vote, but like one where somebody might actually get a chance to be a World Cup and yet they wouldn't get any points probably. And someone would moan about it, but they'd have an opportunity to go. The Liechtenstein fans would have an opportunity to go rather than just we're in a qualifying group, we play eight games, we lose them and and then we do that again.
And actually, they they make tournament's more exciting anyway. Everybody everybody loves an underdog always. And they get so many people following them, supporting them, wanting them to do well. And yeah. I'm with you on that, Max.
Well, isn't that kind of what the nation's league is all about? Yeah, well, it's supposed to be. It's supposed to be. And I still find the nation's league incredibly confusing on many levels.
Yeah, no, I think I think the nation has been has been quite successful. There's obviously a problem with my idea, which is if you're the lowest ranked team that doesn't get in the low ranked teams, you don't get to be in the World Cup. But team that's sort of objectively worse than yours does get to play. Josh PUE, the comedian, I'm genuinely think it's amazing what San Marino do in international football population of about 33000. If you took out for the men's team to get the women, old people and children and he said, I'm Goths y, but that leaves about 10000 eligible people so far has been a goth who was really good at football.
Robert Smith could do a bit. 10000 eligible people can play against England and they lose less than 10. Nil is incredible. A lot of the others, CONCACAF in Africa, I think Oceania as well, they have prequalification. Although Dave says when football has become a monotonous conveyor belt where we watch Bruno Fernandez take a penalty, an empty stadium for 90 percent of all games start may need checking. Isn't it fun to see millionaires vs. used car salesmen on very rare occasions?
And Macka makes a good point, which is if they do scrap pointless group stage games, does anyone think they wouldn't just be replaced by meaningless money spinning friendlies, which is probably what would happen? And John says, in fairness, England got knocked out of the last euros by country with a population of 350000. So it's not so far fetched. I seem to remember they were going to walk that game, too. And thank you to producer Joel, who posted me a picture of real Gothic FC and a fully black kit with some long haired men.
Who are they sponsored by The Last Cry? I don't know what that is, but there we are also in that group, Hungary three, Poland three was was really fun. And from an England point of view as well, a couple of questions on the under 21, Jamie, is it me or England under 21 is completely underperforming. Is it time for Frank Lampard? England under 21, Zax says how does Eyedea Boothroyd make one of the easier jobs in world football look as difficult as moving a cargo ship in the Suez Canal?
Barrie, you watched that game, a glutton for punishment yesterday. I also watched it while I was on air. It seemed to me that not a lot happened.
And no England were hot favourites to beat Switzerland and lost and to go to Switzerland, one with and it was one nil with the Swiss. The gold score scored was a bit of a fluke by, well, a total fluke down and slipped while shooting, hit the ball on to his standing foot and it looped up over Ouran Ramsdale head. Uh, but they deserved to win because England created little or nothing and the Swiss rear guard was very well organised.
They defended stoutly in England for all the big name players, uh, couldn't find a way through and a stunning lack of imagination on their part. Bayati Boothroyd seems to have a. Job for life there. And I'm not quite sure why, because England's record is under 21 is euros is pretty dismal. They've gone out the group stages, I think, for the last five tournaments. And you'd probably think they're going to go out the group stages of this one as well.
He does keep getting all his decent players pinched, though, in fairness, and promoted up to the senior squad.
You look at that team he put out yesterday of midfield, Tom Davis from Everton, Oliver SCAP, Callum Hodgson, a toy made Smith roll, Dwight McNeill, Eddie and Cassia. And then amongst the sobs who came on ABC, AJ, Curtis Jones, Ryan Sasanian, Ryan Brewster. You know a lot of Premier League experience there. How old is Tom Davis? He's only 22. I had him about 28. He seems to have been knocking around an awful long time.
You could argue that by putting good players on the pitch and failing to break down a team in the opening group stage of a major tournament is actually the DNA that Eddie Boothroyd is perfecting that DNA, isn't it?
Anyway, we'll move on from England and start part two with Scotland's draw with Austria.
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Welcome to The Guardian, Football Weekly, Scotland to Australia, to Gavin Says Discuss McGinnes overhead kick, please. Suzy, how are you rating John McGinnes overhead kick.
I mean, so I saw the hype and I thought, OK, great, I'll sit down and watch the highlights last night and. And then I saw the go and yes, it's a nice goal, but it's no Renaldo against Juventus or Bale in the Champions League against Liverpool. Is it I mean, it's it it's slightly scuffed and I would say slightly lucky, but it is still an overhead kick that takes some skill, but it is not going to rank in the top top 10 of all time, is it?
I think if you I think if you have to if you're already sort of sitting down when you do it, you're sort of placing yourself down. Yeah, I'm with you. I saw everyone going, oh, my God, John McCain. I was like, I was ready to rewrite the Trevor Sinclair spectrum. And then what did you give it on the spectrum?
I'm saying not even a four, is it? I think a four point two. And maybe maybe that's overgenerous. But listen, it it's a good point, Barry, for Scotland or should they be winning that game?
I think all things considered, it's probably a good point, but they played well and probably should have won. I mean, Ron Christie was denied a clear penalty of surmising was that wasn't given. But no, I thought it was a good performance and it's a game they probably should win. But that'll take the point.
It's no big panic. It's interesting, isn't it, that Ron Christie thing and there being no Vioxx. I just presumed there was V.R. in these matches and then there wasn't. And then part of me thinking.
Now, I won't be getting conflicted after complaining about it all the time. Am I right? What's wrong? I don't know what. I don't know what's right, but I remember thinking that's really not fair on Ryan Christie and and thinking. They should just go and check it, it's so it's clear and obvious, does that make me an idiot? No, because I thought the same when I saw it. I'm very conflicted. And it made me think about the women's game and the fact that for the next season, when all these games are being broadcast on BBC and Sky is going to talk about later, there's no VR in the women's game.
And I was actually looking forward to that. But then you get situations like this where you're like, okay, where's the check?
Yeah, SACEUR Kalajzich, who I confess had not heard of, scored twice 23 year old plays for. This is just a note.
If somebody's listening the next time Archie's on could get remind me to ask Archie about this player because I thought he looked quite impressive and scored a great header as well.
Italy to Northern Ireland nil. Berardi and immobiliser in the first half for Italy. Baby Peacocke Farrell probably could have saved Immobiliser for the near post, but nice to hear Italy's rock anthem to accompany their goals, Richard says. A mention for Stephen Davis equalling the Home Nations Men's Cup record, please. From my point of view, for anyone who takes a record of Peter Shelton is doing football. Great circuit. Wow. For anybody to get 125 caps for an outfield player is pretty impressive.
He made his full international debut in 2005 was a lifetime ago, isn't it, Captain Northern Ireland at Euro 2016.
So well done to him and shame they couldn't get the win. Belgium beat Wales three one.
That Wales goal FAI was a thing of beauty, wasn't it?
Yeah, it really was. I think it was 17 17 passes to the goal in the end. And you know, I really write Harry Wilson anyway. I think he's a fantastic player, but great finish and just just a lovely go.
Belgium haven't lost a home match in qualifying for the European Championships or the World Cup since 2010, unbeaten in 25 since Kevin de Bruyne. It directly involved in 14 goals across his last eight appearances for Belgium, Belgium, a good Barry.
Yes, they were, unsurprisingly, because they have some terrific players. I mean, for them, a win over Wavves should be fairly perfunctory on paper, even though they did get knocked out of the last Uros by Wale's the whole way. The situation is a bit weird at the moment because. Ryan Giggs is has been stood down or stood himself down while his legal issues are ongoing, Robert Page is in for him. Page stresses at every opportunity that it is still Ryan Giggs team.
I still consult with him. So they're in a weird kind of limbo, which I guess probably isn't particularly helpful for anyone, but that that's how it is at the moment. But, you know, losing to Belgium is not a disaster.
All the headlines, Soozie, before the game or about Gareth Bale saying basically just stating some facts to the press that, you know, he he he plays for Real Madrid. He's on loan at the end of his loan. He'll go back to where he is. And that became like a huge story. I'm not sure what else Gareth Bale is meant to say in that circumstance.
Like what would what do you say? It's not it's not like I can't imagine he'll go back to Real Madrid. I mean, imagine no one can, but but yeah, you put him on the spot like that. That's going to be his answer.
A lot of Tottenham fans seem to get very upset about it. And I'm not sure why.
I think they thought they were like because he said he just wants to get fit for the Euros. And he was like, they use he's using us to, you know, just to be fit for Wales.
I mean, I suppose ostensibly that's sort of I thought he was using them to be fit for when the golf courses open up again.
I'm not sure you're right. It was interesting, said tweeting the front page of one of the sports newspapers in in Spain that said, Bale threatens to return like it's like a disaster.
Anyway, the Republic of Ireland went to Serbia. I, I confidently predicted this will be a goalless draw and somehow there were five goals in this game, Karl says. Huge fan international football small. First question for Barry, on a scale of one to abysmal, how awful is this Republic of Ireland team is? Is it the worst you've ever seen? Ireland hadn't scored in seven and they got to.
Yeah. It is is an ordeal watching Ireland play and has been for some time, but there were some signs of encouragement in this game. The first goal was was decent and it was a goal, you know, when you went in the goal.
But you haven't seen your your team score one for a very, very, very long time. You know, that's good. The problem is that Ireland don't have players who are good enough to play the way their manager wants them to play for long periods of time and.
Too many of them aren't getting. A regular first team football, so they're not really fit enough to play this pressing pass and move game that required. And they lost to Serbia because Serbia better than them, and that's Ireland, aren't very good.
And, uh, maybe if there's pre qualifying, we could go in that it got there just before I did that Mitrovic goal. Susie, since you were very I thought your spot on with McGinn, this chip. I thought Mark Travers really I mean, I think he might have been able to chip him. I mean, yes, far off the line, but I did enjoy it. In fact, I enjoyed it more than McGinnes Go. And Mitch, which is as well, I thought was really, really nice.
It is hard, isn't it? Because, yeah, on balance, I preferred it when I saw it. I was more impressed with it than I was with McGinnes Gold. But it was at the hype like and the letdown of McGinnes Gold that kind of got to me. Or was it. Was it. It was a nicer go elsewhere.
Greece got a point in Spain. They were very happy about it.
It was one of those penalties, the penalty that Greece got, I forget which the Spanish defender was, but he made like a full clearance, were absolutely smashed the ball and then his then as he slid in is his his studs went into the knee of the Greek player.
I just sort of I understand why that is given as a foul, but it doesn't feel right. At the same time. I don't know if anybody agrees or disagrees or hasn't seen it or I saw I thought it was harsh.
Yeah. Like you say, it felt a little bit dangerous in that it did go into his leg afterwards. But like you say, it was a clean clearance of the ball. I kind of feel like there needs to be some kind of in-between rule where maybe the play gets booked for it being dangerous after the clearance, but not a penalty or something like that. There's got to be some kind of in between.
Or maybe that's maybe that's me being too vague or even possible.
Yeah, I thought I thought it was like a great a great tackle, but. Yeah, right. Slightly dangerous.
Follow through Suzzy Rack's specific rule on following through which obviously can be taken the wrong way.
Kind of excuse me, Turkey, the Netherlands, Turkey beat the Netherlands for two and that was a really fun game. And Tim Temaru, I mean, no one is angry when they consider Golden Tim Cool.
And in four of them, Norway and Germany wore t shirts calling for human rights on and off the pitch before playing Gibraltar on Wednesday night, Brett Holland and his team-mates had those t shirts on laws of the game prevent players from using equipment that bears any political, religious or personal slogans. On Thursday, FIFA said they would be taking no action regarding the protests earlier in March. And Lars has spoken about this. Tromso called for the Norwegian FIA to consider boycotting the World Cup if they qualified.
A number of other teams in Norway have made a similar request. They were prompted to act by a report in The Guardian last month which said six and a half thousand migrant workers have died in Qatar since the World Cup was awarded in 2010. But you've written a piece on this. It's very interesting to see what happens with Norway, with that boycott and with what other countries decide to do seemingly out of the Netherlands. What they've said is, you know, we we like human rights.
We're going to go because that's the better thing to do. Would probably be the way most countries go. Yeah, the Dutch have said they won't boycott the tournament, but they'll participate in a socially responsible way. And they also made the interesting point. I thought that a couple of human rights groups had said to them that boycotting the tournament would be a bad thing to do because it would mean that already oppressed migrant workers would lose out on on money.
And I'm not so sure. About that, uh. Because before, for starters, some migrant workers working on one of the stadiums, it transpired they hadn't been paid for seven months. I'm in the column I made the point that there are a lot of quite sinister similarities between Qatar and apartheid era South Africa. And, you know, teams didn't go on tour there or anyone who did it was seriously frowned upon. I don't think teams will boycott the tournament.
There's arguments that they should, arguments that they shouldn't. England, the FFA haven't taken a line on this. And I think it's something they need to do. Uh, and I would imagine they'll probably adopt a similar approach to the toxify. In a response to the Guardian's report on migrant workers who lost their lives, the Qatar organising committee said, We deeply regret all of these tragedies and investigated each incident to ensure lessons were learnt. We have always maintained transparency around this issue.
And despite inaccurate claims around the number of workers who've died on our projects, the Qatari government said the, quote, mortality rate amongst these communities is within the expected range for the size and demographics of the population. And that'll do for part two. Part three will begin with the Women's Champions League.
Welcome to Part three of The Guardian weekly, the Women's Champions League, then Manchester City, losing in Barcelona, Chelsea beating Wolfsburg, Leo by and also winning that start with Chelsea Wolfsburg.
Suzy, how did Chelsea win that? I mean, I don't really know.
And if you follow me on Twitter during the game, you'll see that I was I was very, very surprised at Chelsea two goals which were completely against amount of play. I mean, like Wolfsburg were just phenomenally good in the first half.
And I think they were underestimated not by Miis or Chelsea, but just generally by fans who have sort of assumed that Chelsea are going to walk, walk straight to the final and set up a final with with Leon and, you know, kind of be the first the first team in however many years to challenge Leone's dominance, the competition. And that was massively naive because like Wolfsburg have dipped this season, they've they've lost one game and they've drawn one. And they're not top of the Bundesliga because by and of one, all of their games that apparently is is a big dip in form.
Yeah. They lost Panio harder to Chelsea, who is arguably the best player, one of the best players in the world. But, you know, she was she was never she was never it was never one player team built around her. You know, she was central to everything they did. But they had a team of incredible talent that has done very, very well in the Champions League for a very, very long time. So they were massively underestimated.
And they it was just like a mixture of them not taking their chances phenomenally bad, locking the post overhaul, some absolutely fantastic goalkeeping, again, from Chelsea and Catrine. But who who was was critical to getting into the quarterfinals in the first place with with some great saves and penalty saves in the quarters against it in the last 16 against Atletico. So, yeah, I don't really know how they did it. It was a great turnaround at half time.
You know, obviously it's cliched, but they say the game, you know, you've got to score goals. And Wolfsburg didn't. Chelsea took their chances when they got them. But yeah, really, really like a thrilling end to end game to watch fights really broke.
Yes, very close.
But yeah, I mean, I don't mean I just like she did have a great game and that's fine. But I've so I've never been convinced. I've never been convinced when I've seen her.
Yeah. Well I'd love to know why I genuinely. I positionally sort of quite often seems to make not be in the right place and make mistakes, but, you know, this is someone who, you know, doesn't watch every minute of every show in terms of a sense back and going forward.
And the past is she does to split others defences are fantastic. I know what you mean because she does have a rick in her. But defensively, a lot of women's football that there's plenty of defensive risks there, I would say. But I've always found her to be a commanding centre back. And and certainly, you know, she's she's she's a regular in the Chelsea squad for a reason.
Man says he lost to her boss. I mean, pass over the backside in this fight, weren't they? But he had their chances.
Yeah, they did. But they really Mr. Horton, she's out with an Achilles injury at the minute. And to be honest, Ali Robock, at that school on down, particularly in the first half, she was excellent. But yeah, I think for a Manchester City point of view, Gazzola is insisting that they're still in this tie. I can see what he means.
However, you know that the attacking prowess that Manchester City have, they should have been on the scoresheet and to to not score at all against Barcelona was just not good enough.
Yeah, I completely agree. I mean, it was a shame the loss on him wasn't sort of rewarded for all our efforts with a goal because she was just you know, she's really one to watch for England in the future.
Like, she's just supremely, supremely strong, fast, low centre of gravity, like fantastic ability to run at players and take them on, which I think was was was lacking generally in that game. From a certain point of view.
Can we talk about the broadcast rights deal, the agreement which will run for three years from 2021 22 Brissy worth around eight million a season, biggest broadcast deal of any professional women's football league in the world. Some of the money be used for central investments, which include support and development for refereeing. The rest will be split amongst clubs in the wessell, 75 percent of the money to them, 25 percent to the championship clubs and the games we broadcast on the BBC and Sky.
How important is this for the women's game to be huge?
I like I got really emotional when the press when the press release dropped like I knew the deal was coming. And I put it because I knew I knew the deal was coming. I knew it was imminently going to be announced. We knew it was Sky Sports on BBC. But when you saw the detail and I put it like the the commitment to showing the games on main event, Premier League, Sky Sports, Football and then BBC one on BBC two, and that like a specific, you know, sectioned off these many games on these channels minimum, that really excited me because that's just an audience beyond anything the women's game has ever had, you know.
Yes. With you know, the games are broadcast now this weekend. There's a three or four games on each player and there's one on BBC Sport three. But you've got to find them. You've got to know that there to be able to to be able to go and seek them out. Whereas this is you know, you switch on your telly and it's on every single weekend. And I just I just find that mind blowing. You know, I think that's, you know, could be as game changing as it was when Skye took on the Premier League, like, really that level of of of game changing this.
Not that there aren't problems with that as well, but and things that come with that from the men's game that, you know, don't necessarily want. But I think that the fact that twenty five percent of the money is going to the championship and I ask the question about whether there should be any going to the National League. And I said that, you know, at the moment they've got to bring facilities up to standard for broadcast and stuff. But that's not something ruled out in the future.
I think that's really important as long as that is maintained and it's seen as this deal being for women's football and not just for the Women's Super League and about developing across the pyramid, then. Yes, just it's great. I love it.
Moving on to the Shelden report and the crew chairman, John Bowler, has resigned following the publication of that report into historical sex abuse in football. The report criticised crew for not doing more to prevent crimes by their former coach, Barry Bonnell. The League One club apologised, said they acknowledged more could have been done to monitor him. In a statement, Boehner apologised again to the survivors, said he always intended to resign after the review was the only person left with an association to that era.
I truly believe it was important for me to see it through to its conclusion. I'm satisfied with the findings of the review that found the club did not have any knowledge of Barry Bonds heinous crimes. I'll always be deeply appalled and sorry that those young players and their families suffered at the hands of this evil predator. I personally and sincerely apologise to them for their suffering. The offside trust set up. By survivors, four survivors said we thought the resignation might have happened in 2016, again in 2018, for not to have happened once the Shelden report was published, rubbed salt into the wounds of survivors.
It's taken several days of pressure from survivors, journalists and ultimately the club's own supporters to force this resignation today.
Barry, your messaging me about the documentary Football's Darkest Secret and its. Painful and the bravery of the survivors is quite extraordinary, isn't it? Yeah, it's a grim watch, a tough watch, but I would argue an essential watch. And I was in tears watching it at times. And there are high profile names there like David White and Paul Stewart, who were, you know, hugely successful players, uh, both England internationals and, you know, kind of heroes of mine growing up.
They were in Shoot magazine and players. You wanted to be like when you grew up and to to learn.
How, you know, first hand accounts from them of of. What they were, the baggage they were dragging around with them, it's it's incredible that they had the careers they did. And then, of course, there were other less high profile players who some didn't make in the game at all. And you wonder. What they could have done or could have achieved if if these monsters hadn't been preying on them and to sit there in front of a TV camera talking to someone you don't know very well about in intimate detail of these atrocities that were visited upon, you must be so difficult and can't, commander, the bravery of them and hopefully this that this report and that and the fact that their abusers have been punished and that this documentary is going out.
It's three parter. It's, you know, three and a half hours, four hours in total. Hopefully that will bring them some peace. I might need to agree with the other side.
Trust. I don't quite understand why John Boehner hat to, you know, the sentence. I truly believe it was important for me to see it through to its conclusion. When you first read that, you sort of think, oh, that sort of objectively makes some sense, but when you analyse, it doesn't make any sense at all. You don't need to state that. That doesn't make that wouldn't make any difference to the to the results of the enquiry.
You know that I don't make any sense to me.
Some clubs, a lot of clubs have been, you know, were involved in this and some of them have acquitted themselves well in the aftermath. Manchester City spring to mind is one example, and others, in my opinion, have behaved appallingly, nobody more so than crew. If I was a true fan, I. I honestly don't think I could go and watch them anymore. But now that this guy has stepped down, hopefully they can move on and it was nice to see that it was fine pressure, basically, that forced him out in the end.
Yeah, I interviewed National Radio yesterday who, you know, was coached by Barabino, and he he was incredibly emotional and, you know, and and sort of choked up that he was on he was on that trip to Jacksonville where Bannered got arrested and.
What he from his personal point of view, just sort of feeling incredible guilt that, you know, that for him at a time of total innocence, where this was like a dream time for him in his life, that, you know, someone in the someone else on that trip is having the worst time of their entire life at the same time. But he spoke incredibly well about it. And, yeah, it's such a it's an incredibly depressing story.
But it's, as you say, Barry, it's. It's hard to watch that documentary, but you absolutely should. Moving to buyer corner and news yesterday of Scott Brown joining Aberdeen as a as a player coach and the thought massive of Scott Brown, not in a sense, it is a sort of extraordinary.
Yeah, I mean, I remember when. We first saw Scott Brown after lockdown and he. It looked like he'd been using the Homer Simpson. Concoction five or whatever it's called, and had had his luck down here, you know, God, he looks so weird and I think I think the same thing when I see men in Aberdeen church. But, you know, he's 35 years old. He was selling very little. He's had a very successful career with them.
He's won 10 league titles, 12 cups. And I suppose he has to think about what his next step is. And he Derek Glass is a former team-mate of his. He's come from coaching. I think it's Atlanta seconds, the Atlanta Reserves. He's got the Aberdeen gig and he is obviously sound Scott Brown out. Would you like to come and give me a hand? And Scott Brown has decided it will be a good idea, so why not?
My dream is when fans are back in stadia is for Scott Brown to score against Celtic and then to celebrate with wild abandon, we should say. Well done. Some broader ranges as well, opening hearts in the Scottish Cup.
But yeah, they're the Highland League champions and they haven't actually played a game or they hadn't actually played a game since January because their league has been suspended because of covid and they managed to to beat hearts to one in the second round of the Scottish Cup hearts, obviously not in the Scottish Premiership anymore, but they will be next season. They're sixteen points clear in the second division and it's a huge embarrassment for them now.
Susan, I'd like you to listen to Barry's theory of football question comes from Jack, which is if Newcastle finish in the bottom three, should Everton get relegated instead as Newcastle beat them twice this season and therefore the better team? Barry, would you like to explain your theory?
Well, it's not really a theory. Someone said to be on Twitter recently that all they wanted you know, there's a big discussion, a big philosophy, philosophical debate that never ending about what do Newcastle fans want. And this particular Newcastle fan said he wanted a team that could compete with Everton or Burnley or Crystal Palace. I think they were the three teams he name checked.
So I went and checked Newcastle's recent results against those three teams and discovered that they'd beaten all of them. They'd been Everton twice. They've beaten Burnley once this season.
And they I think I think it was pilots who they've also beaten twice, which suggests that they're perfectly well able to compete with them. Not only can they compete with them, they can beat them with monotonous regularity. So that Newcastle fan already has what he wants.
But if I if I if I remember correctly, you're basically suggesting that Newcastle are better than Everton.
All I'm saying is that they've beaten them twice the last time they played them home and away.
The whole idea of sport is, you know, if I said to you, yes, I could throw a shoe over a pub and you said. What I can throw you higher over a pub than you. How would we figure out who's better at throwing a shoe over a pub? We both throw a shoe over a. Exactly, and whoever got it highest would be better. Yes, Urgo Newcastle are better than Everton. Maybe we should scrap the Premier League as a whole and just have every single game as a who is better than who.
And the winner gets a trophy.
Well, listen, the whole idea of playing a football match. To discover. Which team is better at football than the other? Someone is randomly decided to pick an arbitrary number of games they have to play. Yes, but Everton are better than Newcastle, Barry. What then, why do they keep losing to Newcastle? Because football is you know, it doesn't always transpire. One of the best things about football is the better team doesn't always win. Well, apparently they do, and that's why you want teams like San Marino to be farmed off into some special league where everyone gets a medal.
That's that's a different that's a that's a different point. Your argument is the argument that I think I probably first used when I was about eight. If Cambridge beat Sheffield Wednesday and Chevy Wednesday, I'd be an Arsenal. And Arsenal had beaten Barcelona and Barcelona Friendly had beaten Brazil.
That came in for beating Brazil.
Someone has done the unofficial football league championship of England. You, FLC, DeCota, UK, starting with the first ever football league champion Preston North End in 1888 89 who went through the entire season undefeated. The UFC is contested in a boxing style knockout competition. The team that meets the current unofficial champion.
Then back in a minute then. Can I interrupt you, Max? Because Leuchtenburg Preston last you. So there we go.
LUTIN When Leutner the best team in the world ever, last season's champion was Southampton, the current champion is Manchester United's. The last change of match was Magistris win over Manchester City. Manchester United have held the title 76 times. Their current streak is two matches and 19 days. The next game in the tournament is Manchester United versus Brighton or no other games matter. All time champions Everton, a top 88 titles. Manchester United, a second villa, third Arsenal, Liverpool ajoint fourth.
West Brom of sixth is exciting, isn't it? A Newcastle United are the ninth best team equal with Man City. So what are you Newcastle. What are they moaning about exactly. So there we are. So we'll keep everyone focussed on Manchester United Brighton. It's the only game in town now. A bit of admin Marcus Bean's handball, which we discussed.
Oh you've got, you've got to watch it. You've got to if you haven't seen it, it is just it's absolute, absolute travesty. He's basically doing like a rolling like a no no, a Roly-Poly. It's not like a forward somersault.
It's sort of when you get on your side and you roll down a hill and he's rolling and then he just punches the ball in the back of the net. And he did what he did say, Marcus, and he hasn't Tyler was upset. That is an understatement. And he hasn't. Tyler was absolutely incandescent with four and he just got out and honestly, like the veins in his head popping out. But you did some journalism on this, didn't you?
You got in touch with Ian Holloway.
Yeah, well, I just tweeted Ollie become Marcus had said, you know, that Ollie wasn't impressed with his lack of sportsmanship.
And I tweeted Ollie just to see if that was actually true. And he he he's still angry about the fact that his player punched the ball into the back of the net like that. And Mark Burgess, who who also played in that game, he got involved then and said sort of painted this picture of the QPR players who I think they had lost five in a row, and this being the hand of being set them up for a nine match winning streak or something.
And he said that that the players were congregating around the dressing room, chanting, he scored with his hand while a disconsolately sat weeping in the corner at these, uh, horrifically unsportsmanlike players of his. Yes, in Hollaway tweeted, I wasn't happy, Barry. And if you would have been, then you're off my Christmas card list. Marcus knows how I feel so many years later. Thank you. Tomorrow on the Football Weekly Merchandise Ideas Forum, he has made a blue sweatshirt with the anecdote of Ben Fisher's mom, Nancy, going to Nancy because they only go on holidays to places with their names in it.
And it just says when Nancy went to Nancy and then with a picture of a map of France from Google Maps with Nancy Pend, and it says, When Nancy went to Nancy and other great tales, so many opportunities, we need to have a business meeting so we could go on Dragons Den.
Well, we need to start discussing our image rights with the big bosses upstairs. This is going to be a big can of worms.
How much do you want for your image rights, Barry?
Um. I don't really know what the going rate is for image, right, Fay, if you've got a deal, I don't know why you're looking at me. I've got no idea. I would expect Barry's image rights to be off the scale. Huge.
Well, to David Squires, pay you to put him in this cartoon.
Nobody did ask permission. Uh, someone from the office rang me on Monday and said Squires wants to know if it's OK to put you in his cartoon this week. I mean, I think they thought I might be offended, which would suggest they really don't know me at all. But it is an honour to be in David Squirters cartoon.
Can I can I tell you how I read that when I saw your tweet? Barry, I just very quickly skim read your tweet and then I saw the photograph.
I thought that David Squires had drawn José Moreno looking like you and I had to go back to GQ, apparently say that Barcelona player Lionel Messi, 12 million dollars a year for his image rights.
That sounds about fair. Yeah, OK.
Well, we'll see how it progresses and that'll do for today's podcast. Thank you so much, Susie.
Thanks for having me. Thank you, Farai. Thanks, Max. I will be back on Monday. Oh, thank you, Barry.
Oh, you're welcome. I have to earn the right to be thankful. You have to do what you have to do. Prequalified Pod. You do a prequalified one on Sunday and may be available on Monday.
Oh, for more great podcasts from The Guardian. Just go to the Guardian dot com slash podcasts.