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Author Archive for Barney Ronay

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Eden Hazard can shine at Real Madrid without being the new Cristiano Ronaldo | Barney Ronay

The former Chelsea player has the skill and the attitude to succeed at the Bernabéu even if the club is still a little infatuated with the former owner of the No 7 shirtEden Hazard’s first start for Real Madrid on Wednesday night was always likely to b…

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Cristiano Ronaldo can draw line under superstar era with international record | Barney Ronay

Cristiano Ronaldo has Ali Daei’s unheralded milestone in sight, which would suitably crown a unique type of brillianceFamously, the North Korean leader Kim Jong-il only ever played one game of golf. In 1994 state media reported Kim had picked up a clu…

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Michel Platini, four years on from his downfall, still stalks the stage | Barney Ronay

The Frenchman wanted to be his own man and to parade as some kind of sporting conscience but in the end he found himself beaten thin and ultimately lost within the machineAs the sun-bleached August prelims fade away and the season proper kicks into gea…

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Bury’s expulsion from EFL shows football’s regulations are meaningless | Barney Ronay

Demise is another warning that huge social value of clubs cannot beat the cold, hard edges of a free marketA good day to bury Bury. The swell of public sympathy at Bury FC’s expulsion from the English Football League was tangible on Wednesday morning. …

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English football gets David Luiz wrong. He is a fine Arsenal signing | Barney Ronay

Brazilian’s blunders have met with much mockery but he has been one of the Premier League’s most influential defendersEver since he first arrived at Chelsea, bursting on to the scene like a labrador puppy at a family gathering unsure of whose face to l…

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English football gets David Luiz wrong. He is a fine Arsenal signing | Barney Ronay

Brazilian’s blunders have met with much mockery but he has been one of the Premier League’s most influential defendersEver since he first arrived at Chelsea, bursting on to the scene like a labrador puppy at a family gathering unsure of whose face to l…

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English football gets David Luiz wrong. He is a fine Arsenal signing | Barney Ronay

Brazilian’s blunders have met with much mockery but he has been one of the Premier League’s most influential defendersEver since he first arrived at Chelsea, bursting on to the scene like a labrador puppy at a family gathering unsure of whose face to l…

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New world order? Welcome to Premier League’s new era of excellence | Barney Ronay

As the season kicks off the Premier League appears to have it all. But this brave new world brings fresh challenges for allBring me my bow of burning gold. Bring me my all-English Euro finals. Bring me my £5bn three-year domestic TV rights cycle. Bring…

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Tayla Vlaeminck’s rarity shows coaching changes are needed to close pace gap | Barney Ronay

Difference between everyday male bowling speed and top female speeds is too large to make any real senseThe first rule when comparing women’s sport to men’s sport is: don’t compare women’s sport to men’s sport. This is generally a pointless exercise, u…

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Steve Smith enters as the pantomime villain, but departs a hero | Barney Ronay

The Australian batsman was booed on his way to the crease, but 144 runs later left to applause from all around the groundThey came for one kind of story. What they got was another entirely. Under gloomy Birmingham skies Steve Smith produced an innings …

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Fuss over Joe Root’s move to No 3 is just another part of Ashes mythology | Barney Ronay

Australian fast bowlers against English batsmen has been the defining contest in this most famous of sporting encountersThere are the usual signs that it is getting closer. The Ashes white noise starts to fade. The Ashes hum starts to die back, wider c…

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Fuss over Joe Root’s move to No 3 is just another part of Ashes mythology | Barney Ronay

Australian fast bowlers against English batsmen has been the defining contest in this most famous of sporting encountersThere are the usual signs that it is getting closer. The Ashes white noise starts to fade. The Ashes hum starts to die back, wider c…

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This Is Football shows the ‘magic of the game’ is not just a sales pitch | Barney Ronay

For once, emotions are genuinely stirred by the story of Rwanda and how the game helped heal its divisionsIt can be hard in England to get a feel for the scale, the power and – yes really – the beauty of the Premier League’s vast global reach. Probably…

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What next for Andy Carroll, the striker who never quite hit his heights? | Barney Ronay

The very English centre-forward is surplus to requirements at West Ham but another club could surely harness his talentsWhen the time comes for a big screen Andy Carroll biopic it may be a good idea to start with a chase scene. Perhaps even that trauma…

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Ben Stokes writes his redemption story with World Cup tour de force

The all-rounder’s remarkable performances during the tournament, capped by a bravura display in the final, suggest Stokes 3.0 could be the best iteration of allBen Stokes: remember the name. This World Cup was always billed as a moment to refresh and s…

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New Zealand fitting final foes after England’s thrilling transformation | Barney Ronay

The Black Caps were once the inspiration, now they are the last obstacle standing between a daring England and the World CupAs it was in the beginning, so shall it be in the end. Four years on from the start of English cricket’s great white?ball paradi…

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MS Dhoni reveals his greatness even in dismissal and defeat for India | Barney Ronay

Former captain will remain a symbol of cricket’s and India’s transformation, and even his decline has given us moments to rememberAt the end of a difficult week it is worth remembering that there are a great many agreeable things about Mahendra Singh D…

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After years in the wilderness, can Barcelona save the House of Neymar? | Barney Ronay

Brazil forward is still racking up the goals but he looks like more of a co-opted corporate machine than a footballer these daysFor English nobles during the reign of Henry VIII the news that the king was coming to visit was a sure sign of impending ru…

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England can still win the World Cup, but does English cricket deserve to? | Barney Ronay

The 50-over game, and the game in general, is fast disappearing in England which would make finally becoming world champions in the format a little peculiar‘Deserve’s got nothing to do with it.’Jonny Bairstow knows what the problem is. Two days after t…

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Manchester United’s ‘culture’ is overrated. Busby and Ferguson swam against the tide | Barney Ronay

Another summer of rebuilding appears under way at Old Trafford but attempts to recreate the philosophies and glories of previous eras look doomed to failThere was an interesting programme on BBC Radio 4 this week about the notorious Portuguese man o’ w…