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The Roar

Janek Speight

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Joined April 2011

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Janek is a freelance journalist based in Berlin. He previously worked at the Newcastle Herald. Follow him on Twitter - @JanekSpeight

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A 32-team format could be stretching it, no? Though perhaps it could work. Would at least get rid of the third-place problem we’re seeing in the Euro 2016

'Minnow' nations have strengthened Euro 2016

I actually enjoyed the England-Slovakia game, even in the second half. That may have had something to do with me tipping a draw in the work sweepstake though…

'Minnow' nations have strengthened Euro 2016

And Croatia a favourite? Such a good team, they could really shake things up in the knockouts. That midfield is a dream.

'Minnow' nations have strengthened Euro 2016

Hey Andrew, never mentioned positions in the Euro groups, only the qualifying groups… Northern Ireland qualified in first, Wales in second, as mentioned.

'Minnow' nations have strengthened Euro 2016

Rooney has been good against ordinary opposition, or at least opposition happy to concede possession.

His passing % was superb, yet he’s making the wrong decisions. Often he misses the chance for a better ball, which is the problem. It slows down the attack.

Second half he was much better, but the chances he created mostly came from free-kicks, not open play.

Will be interesting to see him against better opposition. He has the goods, but should have been moved to midfield earlier.

Super subs can’t paper over England cracks, Roy doesn’t have a clue

Always words of wisdom from you, Ben. When Australians are embarrassed by a minority of our country who cause trouble, think about how it is for the majority of Russians.

Russia's World Cup might be the bloodiest in history

Check the footage from overnight, Kaks. Mostly English fans causing problems, Russian sparse.

Neither country’s ‘supporters’ are innocent, we shouldn’t concentrate on condemning one or the other. Both minorities mind. Agree with the flak directed at Russian officials, though. Pathetic response.

Russia's World Cup might be the bloodiest in history

100%, Spain are kings of the 1-0 domination.

Euro 2016 contenders fail to stamp authority

I think people are overstating his performance to be honest. He was good against a poor Russia team, yet his decision-making was still not perfect.

He didn’t make bad decisions, but certainly didn’t always play the best possible ball, which is what the best such as Toni Kroos and Iniesta will do.

Agree though, wish he’d been moved there much earlier.

Euro 2016 contenders fail to stamp authority

Pogba, Iniesta, Müller have to be among the most influential players at this tournament to be fair.

But fully, impossible to make concrete finals predictions after one match.

Euro 2016 contenders fail to stamp authority

I think Leo is quality. He may be accused of laziness at times but his ability to play a killer pass does not exist anywhere else in this squad. If a better replacement can be found, sweet, otherwise keep him on. His fitness will only improve with a full pre-season.

Agree on the others though. Kanta needs a change of scenery. Alivodic has impressed in patches but lacks end product. Watson… nah. Kitto deserves another season. Need a strong recruitment phase!

If FFA finalise sale, Jets can learn how to fly again

Yep, spot on. I think it’s hard to say if he’s a great coach, considering the limitations, but Miller’s definitely impressed me. I was critical of the Carney saga to start with, but after going back home in January and hearing some of the stories… he had to go.

If FFA finalise sale, Jets can learn how to fly again

For me a creative CM is essential. Man, when I saw Watson and Poljak as the starting partnership heading into the season I knew it was going to be a long campaign. Poljak’s got fight, but Ugarkovic would flourish as a traditional DM with an experienced, technically strong partner.

True about a wide attacker though, missed out on highlighting that hole in the squad. I feel Hoffman and Kantarovski will be offered new deals. It’s great to have a local flavour but not convinced they’ve done enough…

If FFA finalise sale, Jets can learn how to fly again

I did work for the Newcastle Herald, but don’t get much of a chance to read regularly from Berlin unfortunately. Jig and I must have similar viewpoints on the season.

If FFA finalise sale, Jets can learn how to fly again

Please enlighten me, Jets Fan. Grew up in Newcastle. Get back to me with your view!

If FFA finalise sale, Jets can learn how to fly again

I think they’re legit. Up 2-0 against City at the moment, though still 45 to play!

Never mind the kick-offs, here's the A-League finals

Thanks for the input from a fan perspective, Mid. I agree that Charlesworth has done a great job off the field, it would be incredible for the Mariners to turn a profit. Strange, though, that he once said it wasn’t possible without 10,000 crowds (if remember correctly?).

Though it doesn’t mean the directive for his gung-ho preferences on the field should be swallowed.

The Newcastle Jets have shown how to perform with limited players, the Mariners could have done the same. Any owner saying results don’t matter, even if just for one or two years, is having a laugh. I’m not too keen to see this rebuilding phase that is so prevalent in the AFL creep into the A-League. Rebuilding and competitiveness do not have to be mutually exclusive.

Mariners’ on-field circus must match off-field progress

Sorry, Kaks. I misinterpreted your comment. You mean in terms of knowing the fan base? I don’t think it should be underestimated, though yeah didn’t do much for Keegan and Roeder…

Benitez arrival promises to lift fog on the Tyne

Haha, shit. To see Big Sam steer Sunderland ahead of Newcastle in this dogfight would be cruel! Saying that, I’d love to see all three north-east clubs in the EPL again next season.

Benitez arrival promises to lift fog on the Tyne

Kevin Keegan, post-1990s, on the same level as Benitez? Roeder also? Keegan’s third coming was seen as a blessing, but likely was never going to work. Though his frustrations at Ashley’s meddling still exist for Benitez. Roeder was competent but not a proven winner.

Benitez arrival promises to lift fog on the Tyne

Too true, it could all turn to shit. Put nothing past Ashley. But Benitez’s appointment is arguably the best thing Ashley has done

Benitez arrival promises to lift fog on the Tyne

Yeah, maybe, Fadida. Have you ever been to the Toon though? I’d say understanding the fans there is pretty crucial to gaining their support. And if you’ve experienced a rocking St James’ you’d understand how that can egg on a team… Pardew didn’t manage it, despite brief success, neither did Gullit. Souness certainly didn’t, and neither did Kinnear. Notice a pattern at all?

Benitez arrival promises to lift fog on the Tyne

Agree, Liam. This year Ashley has finally put money into the club, and that should be acknowledged. However, he has refused to back his managers, preferring to support Carr and Charnley (or previous managing directors), who do not have to coach the incoming arrivals. Not unknown in football, but it has not worked. Ashley’s model is failing.

Benitez arrival promises to lift fog on the Tyne

Not really sure how you can compare Benitez to Gullit?

Benitez arrival promises to lift fog on the Tyne

I didn’t, been out of the news loop this week. Thanks for bringing it up, sounds like a brilliant idea.

Puppet master FFA must cut new A-League head's strings