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Week 25: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

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Wayne Rooney, revenge for Egypt and Manchester United fans all feature in the good, the bad and the ugly section of the podcast. Vocabulary support can be found for the words in bold at the foot of the post.

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The Good

It has been a very good week for Manchester United and England striker Wayne Rooney. First up he scored all four goals in Manchester United’s demolition of relegation candidates Hull City to take his season’s tally to 19. He then capped off a special week by scoring the late winner in the Carling Cup semi-final against arch-rivals Manchester City last Wednesday. Next up for Rooney is a trip to the Emirates to face title rivals Arsenal.

Good for Egypt as they overcame Cameroon in the quarter finals of the African Cup of Nations in an incident-packed match. Most of the action centred around their captain Ahmed Hassan, who scored an own goal and two more goals, this time at the other end, to claw the Pharoes back into the game. His first goal forced extra time and his second, and Egypt’s third, appeared not to cross the line but was given. The win over many pundits ‘ pre-tournament favourites sets up a mouth-watering clash with bitter rivals Algeria in the semis.

The Bad

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And it is that semi-final game where my bad football story of the week can be found. The rivalry between Algeria and Egypt has been well-documented but the behaviour of the Algerians during their 0-4 defeat against their neighbours was appalling with some dreadful tackles and poor discipline throughout. One tackle in particular from Portsmouth player Belhadji almost broke an opponent’s leg. A shocking end to a lacklustre tournament for the Desert Foxes.

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Relationships between the Aston Villa coach, Martin O’Neill, and Arsenal’s Arsene Wenger are pretty bad after Wenger accused Villa of playing a long ball game in their 0-0 draw away to the Midlands side. O’Neill was furious believing that Wenger was insulting his team’s style of play. The two also had a run-in last season and had to be separated from each other on the touchline when Arsenal visited Villa Park – that time Wenger was unhappy with the refereeing decisions saying the Villa players were pressurising the officials. The Northern Irishman, O’Neill, hit back at the latest comments saying, “Ashley Young didn’t have time to play long balls when he was taking that left-back [Gaël Clichy] to the cleaners. It’s an ­appalling insult.” The slanging match was bad enough, but it was even worse for Arsenal who saw two players injured  – Thomas Vermaelen with a suspected fracture of the leg and Eduardo da Silva with a hamstring injury – before a big clash with Manchester United this week.

The Ugly

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In last week’s podcast we talked about the possibility of fan violence in the return leg of the Carling Cup semi-final between the two Manchester clubs and though there were no cases of any fighting there was a nasty incident when a coin hit Manchester City star Craig Bellamy. The ‘fan’ in question has been arrested and faces a lifetime ban but I wonder will Manchester United face any charges?

Vocabulary

demolition: Thrashing, heavy defeat

tally: Amount, number

capped off: Finished off (in a positive way)

arch-rivals: Strongest or closest rivals – the team you really want to beat

Emirates: the home stadium of Arsenal

to claw the Pharoes back into the game: To allow the Egyptians a chance to recover in the match

a mouth-watering clash : A ‘tasty’ game, a match that everyone wants to watch

well documented: written about a lot in the press, talked about a lot in the media

appalling: terrible, shocking, dreadful

furious: very angry

slanging match: Shouting or arguing with another person

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grell

I was born and brought up near Chester in the north west of England. I have always loved playing and talking about sport, especially football!
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The Good, The Bad, The Ugly