Where do I find a place to get up to date Malaysian football news?
Football news are often reported from all media. Where do I find reports of the most relevant and up to date news so that I do not need to search all over to keep abreast of issues like transfer rumours, football events and news. Im looking for a place which has a contests section like prediction games and SMS contests where members can join and stand to win some attractive prizes. How about any score prediction game to run during the UEFA EURO tournament and world cup where more than 50 members joined the game and win great prizes?
How about a directory focuses on the original outdoor football while looking into some areas of futsal and indoor soccer as well? Ranging from outdoor football fields to indoor soccer venues, this directory is to find out which is the best place to play football near to you. The directory also provides you with the price for booking the courts as well as contact details. As there are a lot of football fields available in residential areas, the directory includes the many fields found in around different areas and when are the best time to play there.
Malaysian football Forum?
This Football Forum talks about anything football from within the country as well as in the global footballing world. Registered members of the community are always talking about scores and transfers and players and teams as there are always something happening in the footballing arena. Great idea?
The layman’s guide to football
Football is more than “22 men running around the field to put the ball into each other’s net”. It has rules and regulations that makes the game all the more interesting. The offside rule, for one is believed to be one of the hardest things to understand. Some say that it is easier to take a woman you just met at the bar home than to explain the offside rule to her at one go and expect her to understand what you are talking about. So we have put up a guide to football for those of you who have yet to (shame, shame) pick up football. We have used the European context here because that’s where the main activities and actions of football are every year. Here’s your guide to becoming a football ‘expert’.
Football in America.
The English created the game of football and the Americans, in their efforts to stay as deviant as possible used the name soccer to distinguish between their own version of football, which ironically, allows the players to kick and carry ball in their arms and running past the field for a touchdown, which is somehow a reflection of Rugby. So whichever you way you see it, football and soccer is the same and to the Americans football uses the hands.
Football is Globalisation
You would have heard of them by now. Manchester United, Liverpool FC, West Ham and the many more that pops up on your television screen almost every day. So the most important thing that you must first know is what these names mean. All football teams play in a league. The English Premier League is the biggest and most watched football league this side of the world. That’s where British teams play each other every week for points and at the end of the season, the one with the most points win. Other leagues include the Italian Serie A, Spanish La Liga and the German Bundesliga. If you know these 4 leagues and could name a few teams there, that’s good enough.
Brotherhood bonding is important.
To love football, you must have a team. It is strange the way you see men hugging each other, wearing the same football jersey when the team scores or wins. It is stranger still that where loving football is seen as a macho thing, hugging each other is, well.. less macho. But they do it nonetheless, regardless if anyone is watching. It is all in the name of male bonding and the brotherhood is important. Hence you must have a team. Even if you don’t, you have to pretend to have one. Everyone has one, so you should too. Do some research, read up on the teams and identify yourself with one. Of course, the easiest way to go about with this is to choose either Manchester United, Liverpool FC, Arsenal FC and Chelsea FC, 4 of the top teams in England. After you have done so, then you can work backwards and learn about their history and achievements, all of which are navigable for reading and watching.
the biggest league in the world is the English Premier League. This is the top flight of English football where 20 of the top clubs in England play in round robin fashion throughout the season. The most common terms you will hear of would be:
Season – a season is where teams engaged in competitive football throughout the calendar year. Football seasons in Europe typically starts in August and ends in May the following year, so it is very common that you see digits like 2008/2009 which means the season starts in August 2008 and ends in May 2009. the rest of the months, June and July are supposedly the resting months. However, those months are also catered for international tournaments like the World Cup, the European Cup and such which usually takes place for one month around June.
Clubs – clubs in England are county based football associations which, depending on the financial standings of the owners could buy and sell players to improve their games. The ultimate objective is to compete in the league and win silverware. The recent years have seen the big four (Arsenal, Liverpool Manchester United and Chelsea) pretty much dominating the competitions at all fronts. Most clubs have an abbreviated FC at the end of their names which means Football Club. Some clubs have illustrious history like Liverpool and Manchester United while some don’t. Each club has a home pitch which where they intimidate and entertain ‘visitors’. They also have a trademark home jersey or ‘kits’ which is the color and the design of their identity over the years. For clubs like Manchester United, their home ground is Old Trafford, a place that strike fear among visitors. Home kits for Liverpool FC is an all red attire which is why they are also associated with the ‘Reds’. When visiting another team, the club will wear their ‘away’ kits and only if their home kits do not clash with that of the home team, will they wear their trademark attire.
Competitions – in most European countries, there are typically 3 main competitions for football, one league and 2 knockout competitions respectively.
League – First and the hardest would be the league. In England, the Premier League starts in August and ends in May. The 20 teams will play each other twice throughout the season, which means each team will play to a total of 38 games. Each team has a home ground, so when they host a visiting them, they play ‘at home’ and the visiting team is playing ‘away’. In this context, each club will play each other home and away. In the league, if you win the game regardless whether you are playing home or away, you get 3 points, a draw will give you 1 point and none for the losing team. The club will accumulate these points throughout the season and when all the games are completed, the club with the highest points win the League title, which gives them the title of Premiership Champions. The three clubs with the least points at the end of the season would be relegated to the lower league and in this context, the Championship league (or Division Two). The top 3 of the Division Two league will then be promoted to the Premiership for the next season.
Domestic Competitions – The other 2 domestic competitions in England are FA Cup and the Carling Cup respectively. The FA Cup is known to be the oldest football competition in the world while the Carling Cup, seen as some as secondary is a less competed club but has its significance. Both these clubs are knockout format games where the clubs who loses are out of the competition altogether. One different element of these two domestic competitions is that they are played only over 1 game and not the usual 2 home and away format. Up until the the semi-finals, if the game finishes in a draw, a replay is staged where the winner must be determined by extra time and if a stalemate is reached, then penalty shootouts will be used. While the League is confined to only the qualified clubs, the knockout games involve all the clubs in around England. That means, the English FA will draw teams to play each other and it is likely that an unknown team might be up against a top club like Chelsea. Most clubs see these competitions as good recognition and exposure to them, as a small district club could be playing at Stamford Bridge, making dreams of some players come true.
That means, football clubs in England play in 3 domestic competitions every season.
a) the league which is a season long competition
b) the FA Cup which is a knockout competition involving all football clubs in england
c) the Carling Cup which is similar to the FA Cup but less prestigious
In most Europe countries like Italy, Spain, Germany and France, they follow a similar format, 1 league and 2 knockout competitions all of which provides the winning teams the chance to go for greater honors, the European titles.
Europe – There are 2 European competitions every season. The most prestigious and sought after European glory would be the Champions League. This competition is played by the top teams of all European clubs. From England, the top 4 clubs of the Premier League qualifies for the Champions League. Depending on the country and their competitions, each European country is allocated 2 to 4 places in this competition. They will then be placed into groups of 4 of which they play each other home and away in a mini league. The top 2 teams of each group will qualify for the knockout stages.
The knockout stages are played over two legs. Home and away. The winner of this round proceeds to the next round which is the quarterfinals and the final will be hosted to find the ‘Champions of Europe’. Currently Real Madrid holds the record for having the most titles having won it 9 times. AC Milan comes second with 6 wins and Liverpool FC holds 5. nobody else comes close.
The second European competition is the UEFA Cup. Known to some as the ‘Mickey Mouse’ cup, this is the less prestigious cup but is significant nonetheless. Where the top 4 clubs of the English Premier League play in the Champions League, the fifth and sixth placed clubs play in this club. So will the winners of the other 2 domestic knockout competitions in England. That means, typically there are 4 teams playing in the highest European competition and another 4 playing in the secondary UEFA Cup. This nature is similar in all European countries.
Business – Football clubs to a certain extend are money making businesses in Europe. Clubs buy and sell players to each other. In England, there are no limitations to how many foreign players you have playing in the club although some ‘home’ players are always desired, but if your club is winning trophies with only 1 or 2 English players, the fans would usually not complain. The richer the club is, the more they can afford to buy expensive players. Some clubs like Arsenal FC are popular for being able to buy players when they are young, grooming them into great players and then selling them off at a high price. Some players, who are bought with a high price like Andriv Schevchenko was bought by Chelsea FC for more then 30million pounds from AC Milan could not produce his form and is seen as a loss to the club. So players, to some extend are business risks.
Manager- a manager is the person who manages the football club. The manager and the owners are not the same and it is unlikely that you will see the owner actually getting their hands dirty in managing the games. In most cases, the manager is given the say in establishing tactics and strategies for every game the club plays. So if the team loses badly, it is the manager who will get the blame for deploying the wrong strategy. Apart from that, the manager is also involved in day to day activities of running the club like training and player welfare. The manager decides on the wages to be paid to the players and the training programs that they have to undergo. Although there is a coach who oversee the training, it is the manager who calls the shots every day. They also handle the financial status of the club, where they must maintain good financial health of the club. Managers are usually in charge of player transfers which means they determine who the club needs and who the club don’t. Some managers are also very hands-on with the youth programmes of the club, often monitoring the progress of the young players to find if they can play in the senior team.
Transfers – Player transfers are allowed in all European leagues through 2 different times. The first would be in the months of non-competition which is in late May until the end of august. That means, come the close season, managers can approach players from other clubs who they want to buy to see if they can secure the player’s services for the next season. These months are the most active in terms of player transfers because it gives them the chance to start the season with the club. The second transfer window is in the month of January. It opens on 1 January and closes at the end of the month. This one month transfer window is usually used by managers to strengthen their squad because they might have players injured during the first few months of the league. Any other deals struck in other months would mean that the player can only move to the new club when the transfer window reopens. That means if the player signed a deal to play for Portsmouth in November, he will not be a Portsmouth player until January.
Cup Tied – a player is deemed cup tied if he has played in a similar competition before being transferred to another club. For instance, Luca Toni who plays for Fiorentina FC for the season 2008/2009 played in the UEFA Cup in September. During the January transfer window he was sold to Aston Villa, who is also playing in the UEFA Cup that same season. Toni is deemed to be ‘cup tied’ and cannot be involved in any of Aston Villa’s UEFA Cup games throughout the entire 2008/2009 season.
Away goal rule – The away goals rule is applicable for games that are played in the knockout format. That means it is not applicable to the league and the competitions which is played over one fixture per round. In knockout games played over 2 fixtures, the away goal rule is usually used to its maximum potential. That means the visiting team who scores in their away fixture will gain an advantage. The away goal is only applied if the total of goals scored over two fixtures end in a draw result where the goals scored ‘away’ are counted as double. For example, Roma vs Lyon. The result in Rome is 1-0 and the result in Lyon is 0-0, that means the total aggregate score would be 1-0 in favor of Roma. But if the result is that Roma and Lyon draw 0-0 at Rome and then played to a 1-1 draw at Lyon, Roma wins this round because although the total score is at 1-1, Roma gains the advantage for having scored a goal in Lyon, while Lyon failed to score in Roma. In a situation where Roma and Lyon both recorded 1-1 draws both venues, then it is considered that it is equal, so extra time and penalties will have to be used to determine the winners of this round.
Cards – in the game of football, cards are used by referees to caution players. There are 2 coloured cards used by referees, the yellow and the red cards. Referees would usually verbally caution a player if a rough tackle happens, and if the offense is repeated a yellow card would usually be flashed. This is also known as a ‘booking’. When a player accumulated 5 yellow cards in a series of games, then they will be suspended for 1 game automatically. But if a player gets 2 yellow cards in one game, then an automatic red card is flashed to send the player off the field. That means the team whose player is sent off will play with 1 man less. The player will get an automatic 3 match ban for the red card although an appeal to lessen the suspension can be done. Referees can also flash the red card in the following situations:
a. malicious challenge, where the player is seen to have made a tackle that seemed dangerous thereby causing harm to the other player.
b. stopping a goal bound situation with the hand. The player, besides the goalkeeper who stops the ball from entering the goal is liable for a send-off and a penalty can be awarded for the attacking team.
c. goalkeeper handling the ball outside the penalty box.
d. goalkeeper brining down a player inside the penalty box without touching the ball. This is a controversy situation where the goalkeeper in his attempts to stop the attacking player brings him down but failed to touch the ball. A penalty is often given and up to the discretion of the referee, a red card can be given to the goalkeeper.
e. stopping a goal bound player. This is also a debatable situation where the player who is bringing the ball towards goal as he races ahead of everyone including the defenders. One of the defender in his desperate attempt to stop the attacker brings him down. The defender could be sent off.
f. managers who are too vocal toward the referee can be flashed a red card and sent to the stands.
Playing advantage –playing advantage is a nature where the referee do not stop the game when a foul is committed because the player holding the ball at the moment is from the team of the player who was fouled or brought down. So instead of stopping play, he allows the team to gain the advantage of carrying on. This is a call purely by the referee themselves in what they deemed fit.
Dive – Diving is a yellow card bookable offense for players who are seen as trying to cheat the referee for a free kick or at times for penalties. If a player is brought down, a free kick is usually awarded, but if the player is brought down in the penalty box, then a penalty is awarded, so depending on the referee’s decision, if the player falls down by himself with minimal contact from the tackling player, he might be seen as ‘diving’ and instead of awarding a free kick, he can be flashed a yellow card.
Dugout – the section of the pitch where the substitutes, the manager and the coaching staff sits. There are two dugouts in every pitch, one for the home team and another for the away team.
Football rules made simple
The basic rules of football is that it is a game played by 22 players, 11 from each team using any part of their body except for the arms. There is 1 referee with 2 linesmen involved to ensure the rules are followed.
There is a goal on each side of the field and the objective for each team is to shoot the ball into the opposing team’s goal. Each team will have 1 player known as the goalkeeper who is allowed to use his hands to stop the ball from entering the goal. He however can only handle the ball inside the penalty area.
The ball is active when it is in the field and will be considered to be out of play when it leaves the field. Each team is allowed to make 3 substitutions in each match, which must be allowed by the referee. The game is played in 2 halves of which each half constitute 45 minutes each, totaling to 90 minutes.
In leagues, a win will constitute 3 points, a draw 1 point and a lost has no points. The team that accumulate the most points during the season is the champion of the league. In knockout competitions, if the game is tied after 90 minutes, extra time is played with a 15 minutes in each half. If after 2 halves of extra time, the game is still tied, then a penalty shoot out will ensue where each team gets 5 kicks each.
The goalkeeper is the only player who is allowed to use his hands to handle the ball but can only do so within the penalty box. Once he leaves the penalty box, he is considered to be the same as other players.
Known in various positions like centre-half, full back, left back, right back and others, the player’s role is to ensure that the opposing team’s players do not get an easy access into goal. They usually play just in front of the goalkeeper.
The Sweeper or sometimes known as libero is a free position where he usually play behind the defence line and to ensure that he is the ‘last man’ to stop the opposing team.
Considered to be one of the most important areas of the game, the midfield is the one who usually set up the ball where he receives from the back line of defence and then feed it to the strikers and forwards. They can either be defensive or offensive and sometimes also known as the playmaker because he will dictate the play of the game.
The one who usually get the goals. He gets the ball from the midfield and then it is up to him to break up the defence of the opposing team and to outplay the goalkeeper to shoot the ball into goal.
The manager of a football team is often regarded as the man responsible for the success and failure of the team. Therefore who he fields and how he fields them is very important. Most of them would field a similar formation which are more significantly successful than others.
The 4-4-2 formation is one of the easiest and adaptable formation in football. It has a tight midfield but is known to have problems with the defence which can sometimes expose gaps for forwards to exploit. This formation make use of the midfielders who will go up on the flanks (right and left) where they try to feed the strikers.
The 4-5-1 formation is where midfield is crowded while there is a lone striker. This requires the striker to be capable of doing something when he receives the ball because there will be 5 players doing so. If he is not capable then the formation would not be affective.
The 4-3-3 formation is another common style of play where there will be 3 players up front. The ones on the left and right usually play a supporting role to provide the ball for the striker. They can be midfielders or strikers. One of the drawback of this formation is that there might be gaps in the midfield, so opposing teams could deploy a 4-4-2 or 4-5-1 formation to counter attack.
The Offside rule
The Offside rule in football is considered to be one of the most complicated and perhaps controversial rules in any game because it has influenced the outcome of football matches throughout history.
The rule is created to ensure that no teams are disadvantaged during game play. The fundamental policy is that the opposing player cannot be the last man before the goalkeeper of the other team. If such a rule does not apply, then teams would just deploy a player around the goal of the opposing team.
A player is offside when he receives the ball from his team mate and is located between the last defender and the goalkeeper of the opposing team, regardless of how far the distance are between them.
A player is in an ‘offside position’ if he is the last man between the opposing team’s goalkeeper and the defender. There is an active and inactive situation in offsides though where if the player is ‘actively’ offside if he is involved with the current play. If he is not actively involved in the play, for instance he is just coming back from leaving the field, then he is considered as ‘inactive’ which means he is NOT in an offside position. The active vs inactive policy has been a controversial topic among managers for a while now.
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