Everton top of the league on social media

DAVID Moyes may have moved onwards and upwards to join champions Manchester United, but in social media terms his previous club Everton are top of the league.
New research from RadiumOne shows that while the Toffees may not have the biggest following, their fans engage the most with their posts – for example Aston Villa and Manchester City are working hard to keep their fans up-to-date (making 337 and 287 posts on Facebook in just 30 days respectively) their fans aren’t getting involved with the content, leaving them near the bottom of the table.
After Everton, Norwich City came second, followed by Manchester United, Southampton and Sunderland.
At the bottom of the table, Stoke City, Hull City Tigers and Swansea City would find themselves in the relegation positions as the least socially savvy teams in the league.
Abeed Janmohamed, Commercial Director at RadiumOne, said: “Despite Manchester United having an enormous following, our research goes to show that, in social at least, size isn’t everything.
“What this shows, I think, is that the clubs that have spent decades cultivating a strong community of real football fans are best placed to take advantage of social media, with passionate fans actively engaging with their clubs.”

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Goaltastic’s top five fantasy football bargains

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I MAY not be in David Moyes or Jose Mourinho’s league just yet, but as the author of Goaltastic I do take in more football than the average man.
Hell, I’m even the reigning Hinckley Times Official Fantasy Football League champion.
So as you can imagine, I’ve been thinking quite a lot about my team for the forthcoming season.
Now you don’t need me to tell you that the likes of Robin van Persie and Juan Mata are probably going to score well this season – their double figure price tags tell you that – but what a canny manager needs to find is value for money, cheaper chaps that might make a mockery of their prices.
Here are my top five…
5. Mignolet
Simon Mignolet was a solid stopper at Sunderland last year, and this season despite moving to Liverpool – who are far more likely to keep their opponents at bay – remains relatively kind in price as the levels were set before Pepe Reina was transferred. This means for just £5.5m you can grab a slice of the Liverpool clean sheets, plus save points.
4. Anelka
He’s getting on a bit, granted, but Nicola Anelka is as lethal as ever judging by his pre-season form for West Brom, and he was one of the fittest in the Juventus squad last season according to the Italian side’s coaches. Plus he’s cheap as chips too, at just £5.5m for a proven Premier League goalscorer.
3. Bony
Yeah yeah, we all know how much of a red herring being a scoring sensation in the Dutch leagues can be, myself more than most being a Middlesbrough supporter having to endure Afonso ’30 goals last season’ Alves, but it’s a real miracle that Swansea snaffled up Ivorian hitman Wilfred Bony to lead their line ahead of some of the continent’s bigger guns.
2. Coleman
There’s always a bargain to be had in finding a player out of position – midfielders playing up front, defenders playing in midfield, goalkeepers playing in defence… Okay, scratch that last one, but Irishman Seamus Coleman, listed as a defender for Everton, has been playing as a winger in some formations for his team this season, leaving him dangerously close to being a defender playing UP FRONT. For £5m, how can you not go for that?
1. Soldado
Now I know £9.5m isn’t exactly cheap, but… Roberto Soldado is World and Euro champs Spain’s number one striker at the moment, he’s been a 20 goal a season man for the last three campaigns, and he’s without competition for places at a Spurs side burgeoning with midfield talent. If I were a betting man, which I am, I’d be laying a cheeky punt on Soldado for this season’s Premier League Golden Boot.
Agree? Disagree? Leave me your bargain spots in the comments, and put your money where your mouth is by signing up to our free league at fantasy.premierleague.com and then join the competition by using the code 148075-41877.

Laudrup should win manager of the year gong for league cup win

ANGEL Rangel believes Michael Laudrup should be named manager of the year after leading Swansea to the first major silverware of their 101-year history.
Swansea produced a consummate display of attacking football at Wembley to secure a 5-0 win over 10-man Bradford in Sunday’s Capital One Cup final at Wembley.
Man-of -the-match Nathan Dyer (two), Jonathan de Guzman (two) and Michu got on the scoresheet to the delight of the 33,000 Swans fans who had made the journey to London.
And Rangel is in no doubt Laudrup’s achievements deserve to be recognised. He said: “I would say he 100 per cent deserves to be manager of the year.
“If we stay in the top 10 having won the cup, I think it is just about the best Swansea can achieve and from our point of view he has to be the best.”

Transfer Deadline Day Deals XI

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NOW the dust has just about settled on an extremely active Transfer Deadline Day, it’s clear there’s been some cracking business done.
It was such a blast, I propose that next summer they let people negotiate football transfers for a whole month or maybe more…
Anyway, to mark some of the best deals that were struck by Premier League clubs on the very last day of dealing – despite nobody picking up the dream partnership of Heskey and Owen – here’s my Transfer Deadline Day Deals XI –
GK – Lloris (Spurs)
DEF – Maicon (Man City), Nastasic (Man City), Oviedo (Eve)
MID – Hernandez (Swansea), Adam (Stoke), Dempsey (Spurs), Mbia (QPR), Sinclair (Man City)
ATK – Berbatov (Fulham), Ramirez (Southampton)

Sinclair set to leave Wales – as his WAG is bored

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MANCHESTER City look dead set to snaffle up yet more young homegrown talent in the form of Swansea City’s Scott SInclair – as his other half is “bored” of Wales.
The winger, who scored in the 5-0 Swans win on the opening day, looks likely to move to Manchester rather than sign a new contract.
The Welsh club’s first-team coach Alan Curtis admitted yesterday: “He’s not really interested in signing a new contract and I think Man City have made a bid.
“So it’s just a matter of time now before it happens and it’s good for both parties.”
However the surest confirmation yet has to come from Helen Flanagan AKA Rosie from Coronation Street, who is Sinclair’s partner.
She tweeted: “Started to get bored now, been in Wales too long, Lol.
“Must take action.”
Actress, model, and football agent.

Don’t Be Sad About Euro 2012 Finishing XI

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SO IT’S all done and dusted – the magnificently entertaining Euro 2012 tournament has finished with a Spanish blaze of glory.
But don’t be sad – there’s plenty of footballing fun to get excited about.
First we have Team GB’s men and women taking on the world at London 2012, and then a new Premier League season kicks off, and while it’s early days, there’s some excellent signings being made already.
So here’s an XI to get excited about gracing the Premier League next season. Admittedly the defence is a bit iffy, but my God they’ll be good going forward –
GK – Foster
DEF – Cuellar, Nelson, Whittaker
MID – Marin, Kagawa, Sigurdsson, Hazard, Podolski
ATK – Petric, Giroud

Premiership Predictions revisited…

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IT’S that time of year I dread.
Why do I do it?
Last summer I posted some bold, brazen predictions about who would emerge victorious and who would be relegated come the end of the 2012/2012 season.
Now it’s time to revisit those Nostradamus-like moments of foretelling.
I’m sure it will come as a shock to absolutely nobody that I got more wrong than I did right.
Obviously in reality it was Manchester City which won the title – I had stuck my neck out and tipped Chelsea, who instead fell apart under Andre Villas-Boas before their late European rally to make the Champions League final. I had Manchester City pencilled in to implode and miss out on Champions League football altogether.
Whoops.
I did tip Manchester United for second place though.
At the other end of the table newly-promoted Swansea and Norwich defied the odds – and my predictions – to avoid the drop in some style. In their place were Wolves and Bolton.
I would like to point out however that I never gave Blackburn a shot and I was right – I would especially like to point that out to the commenter who last July pledged to tuck his tackle between me legs and run around Blackburn town centre singing Life Is A Rollercoaster by Ronan Keating should Rovers go down.
Over to you, dear reader…