Sport

Dear Teflon Dan, This is my third and final take-it-or-leave-it open letter to you all written in quick succession. This is despite you telling me in no uncertain terms that you weren’t interested in receiving such a correspondence, something I would have known if I’d penned this at any point over the summer and not left it so close to deadline. Anyway, here it is. Slightly longer than the one before which was ever-so-slightly longer than the one before that. There were other outstanding candidates for this letter but I’ve chosen only you Dan. Eggs in one basket and all that. I could have written to Javier Hernandez or Charlie Austin or James Wilson and better yet it would only have cost me a second class stamp. But firing off missives left, right and centre, well that’s a...
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Sirs: This message is intended for the individual who recently attended the RedBlacks game on August 31, 2015 and refused to cease and desist from hurling inappropriate comments to the opposing players and personnel. Since our exchange in the stands this past Sunday, I’ve been thinking about how to respond. Perhaps you didn’t notice that I’ve been attending games with my 5-year old son and my husband. This year my husband decided to treat the family and buy season tickets. We both really enjoy football. In fact, it was one of our first dates and we want to share that together as a family. However, rather than fully enjoying the thrill of the game, I spent it responding to my son asking: “Mom, is it funny when that man makes fun of people? …but there are other grown-ups...
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Hello Traitor, I saw a lot of interesting opinions on the internet regarding your move away to the wonderful footballing paradise that is Turkey so let me add my two cents. I think the impact you had on Arsenal with your departure is multifold. You were bought for a pittance (around £2m) at a young age with a reputation for trouble making. Arsenal spent good money paying a player who couldn’t manage to play more than half a season for the majority of his Arsenal career, renewing his contract and eventually making him club captain and highest earner. No prizes for guessing that I am talking about you. After years of selling players, Arsenal became a by word for a selling club but crucially, Arsenal never had to sell an integral first team player to Manchester United. Manchester City got...
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Dear Magpies. We have been embroiled in a fair few imbroglios (embarrassing situations) over the years, haven’t we, even if you lot haven’t been relevant for a while, since—well, since 2010 when you went out and won the whole kit ‘n’ kaboodle, winnin’ the—oh. That was the Championship. Well, good on youse for that. Since then and long before, it’s been a bit of a dry spell since you were anything more than a magpie in the ointment. There was of course that epic comeback in 2011 from 0-4 that still haunts us to this day—bit of a sore spot, that one—but you’ve also played a more welcome role of late, such as the final match of the 2012-13 season when Koscielny netted to secure fourth while we trolled Tottenham. Thanks for that, by the way. Back to the present, though. A quick...
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Dear Demarai Gray, If it is true that Leicester or any other side have activated your release clause, I, and I’m sure many other Blues fans, think you should seriously consider staying here at Blues. You will be a regular member of the starting line-up, as the first point. How many young footballers, especially creative ones such as yourself, have moved too early and seen their career stall? You are a valued member of the first team squad here, which is more than can be guaranteed at a Premier League side. Not only that, but we are a side who appear to be on the up, and by staying you can help us become the side we were four years ago. You’re loved by the fans, and you appear to have a genuine affinity for the club. There’s no substitute for loving the club to any fan, and we’ll...
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Dear Mr Al Hasawi, You’re one of us. A fan of Nottingham Forest Football Club. We don’t doubt it – we saw the way you celebrated the win at Derby, we saw you pose in front of the flag outside the City Ground, we’ve seen you live through the highs and lows. You say you want this football club to succeed. So do we, desperately. The investment you’ve made cannot be questioned but where is the plan? There has to be a plan. There has to be a structure. There has to be strategy. There has to be the right people in place for Nottingham Forest to succeed. Off the pitch and on it, our club has to be run in the right way or success will never be achieved. Look at the recent success stories in football, like Southampton and Swansea – these are clubs that identified their issues and created a...
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Dear Randy, We're glad you have finally acknowledged that Paul Lambert was no longer the right man for the job. Hopefully your decision wasn’t too late, and it was in time to preserve Aston Villa’s Premier League future. But for all the departed manager’s failings – and there were many – every single member of the Villa Park faithful knows the problems at the football club run much deeper than the 45-year-old Glaswegian. The club might be Scot-free, but you’re far from Scot free, Randy. There are big questions that need answering, and we’d love to sit round the table and talk about the things that really matter. Sacking Paul Lambert should just be the start, rather than the end, of the decisive action you take. We understand you’re 5,000 miles away – that Atlantic is...
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To Manchester United: I write this note to thank all the Manchester United family for the great support received during the year I've been part of this Club. When Manchester United chose me as part of their team I felt extremely honoured because I knew what this Club means and how it trusted me. Nevertheless, I'm aware things didn't work as we all expected and believe me, I feel really sorry about it. However in the career of a football player sometimes the unexpected and unwanted may happen. I can guarantee you it was not for trying. I did my best but football is not like maths: often a lot of things out of our control affect the way we feel and the way things turn out. I am sorry it did not work out as I would have wished in this amazing huge club. I want to give special...
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Dear Mr. Murphy, As a gay man, life-long Mets fan, and father of a budding Mets fan, I feel compelled to reach out to you, as you have certainly reached me with your feelings regarding my family. To me, you are a great baseball player who has demonstrated commitment and determination when faced with adversity. I have followed you in your quest to become an All-Star second baseman and truly admire what you have accomplished. To my son, you are more – you are a role model. I understand that may not have been something you signed up for, but for better or worse, for him and others like him, you are larger than life. Let me try to explain why what you said was not an innocuous soundbite, but rather an offensive statement. First, I do not have a lifestyle. I didn't choose my...
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With the second half of this year's MotoGP well on its way I am particularly excited to see where the winner's trophy is going to end up. For me the likes of formula 1 too frequently tends to be a one horse race and this dulls the excitement. I was fortunate to watch the grand prix in Dubai with a group of friends last year and let me tell you it was a pretty boring affair from the off with no one even touching Lewis Hamilton and the majority of us ended up just sitting indoors waiting for it to end. But MotoGP feels different to me and in particular because of the participation of Valentino Rossi. Having recently broken Angel Nieto's 29 year old record, Rossi now has the record for the longest interval between the first grand prix podium finish and the latest podium finish across all...
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