Real Madrid and Barcelona, still the biggest rivalry in the world
Barcelona and Real Madrid still contest the biggest rivalry in world football, despite Atletico Madrid’s recent triumphs. It’s a game that still has an unmistakable air of showbiz, of glamour, and a clash-of-the-titans vibe that no other rivalry seems capable of producing.
Real Madrid’s most successful period came in the late 1950s, when they were famous for a squad of expensive, world-class players including the likes of Alfredo di Stefano. In recent years, Madrid have sought to replicate that era by making big-money purchases such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka, and Gareth Bale.
The history, and the way Real Madrid’s stars seem almost superhuman as they glide around the pitch, makes watching the team in action an almost surreal experience. A visit to the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu is well worth the trip, and you can get Real Madrid tickets from several reliable online agents.
Barcelona, meanwhile, have a strong regional identity which ties in with their footballing ethos. The club hail from Catalonia, and field a team with many Catalan players produced by their famous academy, La Masia, including Xavi, Sergio Busquets, Gerard Pique and Carles Puyol.
This goes along with their famous short-passing style, which focuses on keeping the ball and can produce breathtaking football when played with the kind of world-class players Barcelona have in their ranks. Another Catalan, Pep Guardiola, a former Barcelona player, helped to introduce this style when he became coach of the club.
The success of Barcelona’s style has led many teams around the world to try and adopt it, but there is only one side in the world who does the original and best form of it. Visiting the Camp Nou in Barcelona and watching a match live is a great way to experience this method of football at its purest, and you can find FC Barcelona tickets online from official ticket agents.
Softball cleats are designed for those who play the player’s position. They are available in 3 different types of shoes: high top, mid cut or low cut. There are also 2 basic types of cleats: moldable and detachable. Sometimes you will even find custom softball cleats.
High Top Shoes
These shoes are great for lateral movements since they extend to your ankle. They’re typically the choice of linemen who want to protect their ankles.
Mid Cut Shoes
These shoes are more flexible, which is why skilled players will oftentimes choose them. They’re great for defensive or running backs, as well as quarter backs and receivers.
Low Cut Shoes
These shoes are known to be lightweight. They also provide great movement. So, if you need to make sudden cuts, these are the shoes for you.
These cleats are rounded and provide great traction. Since they aren’t made from metal, they’re especially great for younger players. Another reason for this is that they’re directly molded into each shoe. However, their length is kept shorter so they won’t break as fast. It’s also nice to note that these cleats are somewhat elastic and thus can bend when youâ€™re doing a full sprint, pivot or slide.
These are the most popular type of cleats on the field today. While some people may worry that they would become detached during a game, this simply isn’t going to happen. Instead, you can count on getting better traction with these cleats, which is why they are the top choice of NFL players today. Detachable cleats do come in both metal and molded plastic so you will have to see what your league allows but you can rest assured that the plastic ones are inexpensive to replace when they become worn down.
Customized Softball Cleats
Here you can create your own colored cleats. When you visit tanel360.com they will sell you a pair of standard black cleats that come with an extra pair of shoelaces and a colored marker for free. This will enable you to accent your shoes any way you like.
Ultimately, it is up to you to decide what type of cleats are going to work best for you. Whenever you’re in the process of making this decision, you should always consult your league’s rule book to see if they have a preference as to what you wear.
Ally McCoist is the most fascinating British sportsman of the past thirty years. His career trajectory is like no other, never trodden before or since. Boyhood Rangers goalscoring hero, to TV personality, to assistant manager, to manager of the biggest club in Scotland, to manager of a fourth division club. Most curiously, McCoist has fundamentally used the same technique as the main tool for achieving his aims in all of these.
Some people live for the electric thrill of scoring goals and playing in big nights and cannot sustain themselves afterwards, driven to management, punditry, or depression and oblivion. Some live for the fame and money it brings, and are driven to the same end. McCoist enjoyed all of these, but he lived for something else. Before and after his playing career, just as one imagines he would have done were he not blessed with his goalscoring talent, McCoist devoted his life to banter, and became one with his own patter.
It’s impossible to imagine anyone saying “I met that Ally McCoist in a pub, he wasn’t at all like you’d think.” And it’s very easy to imagine McCoist being a bricklayer or forklift operator, a job where he can be one of the lads, eschewing the kind of Protestant jobs that can drive a man to misantrophy and sadism by what they involve (Bus driver, centre-back) or the sort of job that only an appalling human being would want to do in the first place (P.E. teacher, policeman.)
The legendary 9-in-a-row Rangers team and the one before it, both of which McCoist was in, found banter as being essential to further their success. More serious, terrifying men like Andy Goram reminisce about the daily training-ground fights when recalling the era. McCoist describes a trick played on Gordon Durie by Paul Gascoigne. He does so with an impeccable sense of rhythm and meter which are beyond all but the best comedians. He was a true master of his craft, and it’s no exaggeration to say it was as important to the success of his side as his football skills.
After his playing career ended, in TV land, McCoist further honed his skills by developing something new and something old at the same time, resurrecting an old character that had been long buried, Thatcherism being the final nail in the coffin: the Scottish cheeky chappy. That didn’t make sense in the post-Jimmy Reid days: nu-Scotland was essentially an urban recasting of the savage, rebellious highland warriors of old. Nu-cheekiness from McCoist offered an alternative path of hope, dragging Caledonia reluctantly but necessarily (and appropriately, for a Rangers man) into the Britpop era.
Question of Sport was and is an awful programme. It is bad television. It was best summed up by a comedian who I will not look up to remember in case it was someone awful like Marcus Brigstocke, who described it as “thirty minutes of sportsmen thinking.” But today we are privileged to have access to Youtube, and can view the too-hot-for-TV outtakes. It’s fantastic stuff - no Scotsman had ever oiled and charmed his way so smoothly on national television since John Leslie. Had they been aired, he would have been a Jerry Sadowitz for the working-class masses.
But how to apply that back to football? For most men, a gig like that is crossing the Rubicon into showbiz, from which there can be no return, particularly in the austere world of Scottish managers, the most powerful Presbyterian movement since the Covenanters. How could a man like McCoist return to a world of Jock Wallaces and Walter Smiths? In returning to meet the latter, the two rolled up their trouser legs and exchanged the correct handshakes and McCoist was put to the task.
It was a good move at first - the classic good-cop-bad-cop routine with McCoist and Smith in their respective roles. The ideal of the manager and his second - the man who would be furious you went out for a night drinking, and the man who would be furious you didn’t invite him. It proved to be even more effective than Smith’s earlier dynamic, the bad-cop-even-badder-cop combo he fostered with Archie Knox. And so to McCoist, the answer, as ever, was banter. Fostering team spirit? Banter. Maintaining a good relationship with the press? Banter. In the chaos surrounding the club’s demise, even McCoist could not joke, letting his guard slip for perhaps the one time in his life, but ultimately he remained the same man.
McCoist is now more of a problem to Rangers than an asset, despite his undoubtedly loyal service. Much like Neil Lennon, he represents a near-unsackable hindrance to the club’s progress, or at least will when they return to the big-time. It is probably that he will never manage another football club again, regardless of his ultimate success or failure at Ibrox. But there is no doubt that he has proved himself, in one way and in all ways, always different and always the same, to be a leader of men.
It’s said that those who live by the sword die by the sword also - McCoist has lived by banter instead, but it’s hard to see what sort of fate that could produce. Rob Smyth said that Jock Wallace could not exist today, and perhaps McCoist will face similar struggles - had he been a footballer coming of age now, perhaps he would not have been able to survive in Twitter. Or maybe he would have excelled even more. At the very least, no man who has been able to reinvent himself so thoroughly and so frequently whilst never changing any aspect of his personality should be written off.