The new Premier League season is finally underway and the transfer window is still open, so English football is thankfully back up and running after a nauseating summer filled with piousness of Olympic proportions. Nevertheless, it’s relatively quiet in the world of the England national team, save for a few odds and sods relating to kick-off times and churnalist box-ticking.
We begin our weekly round-up of England bits and pieces at Stamford Bridge, where Chelsea’s Ryan Bertrand has been making a name for himself since the end of last season. John Stammers at Goal.com reports that Bertrand, who made his England debut against Italy in the latest international friendly, wants more of the same. Making himself a Chelsea regular, he says, is the best way to go about reaching his aim.
Jack Rodwell made a winning start to his Manchester City career after moving from Everton, and he’ll be hoping that a step up in quality for him will lead to a more assured position within the England set-up, where his opportunities have been limited by injuries. Born Offside published a piece this week about Rodwell’s transfer and what it means for City, and it concluded that Rodwell, who is arguably something of a gamble for Roberto Mancini, will need time to prove his worth.
On the other side of the Manchester divide, striker Danny Welbeck has signed a new contract at Manchester United. The four-year deal will “keep him at Old Trafford until 2016″ (in an imaginary world where there is no transfer market and clubs don’t get rid of players when they’ve outlived their usefulness), and is a strong show of faith from Alex Ferguson in a player who has bags of ability but has not lived up to his potential quite yet.
FIFA World Cup 2014 qualifying is now upon us, and for those of you thinking of heading overseas to support the team in the away matches, Back Page Football and Kris Bannister have produced a handy travel guide to matches against Moldova, Poland, San Marino, Montenegro and Ukraine.
St George’s Park is now up and running, with its first coaching course under its enormous Midlands belt. It’s brilliant news and hopefully the beginning of exciting developments for England, and for English football. But there’s no point, says Trevor Brooking, unless it inspires a coaching revolution. Well said.