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Sports Then and Now



Soccer is Back on a Global Scale 1

Posted on June 25, 2020 by John Harris

While most team sports in the United States are just getting started on the path back to competition, soccer (known as football to the rest of the world) is back in full swing. As can be expected, football betting is also back on track as the competition heats up.

Though there are still more games left to be played, Liverpool has already staked their claim as the English Premier League Champions with a record of 28-2-1. Given the impressive record, some are wondering if this Liverpool squad ranks among the greatest teams in Premier League History. However, the season disruption due to COVID-19 certainly makes it a bit hard to compare this season to other past campaigns.

Bill Connelly from ESPN did a great job ranking the 27 previous Premier League seasons to identify the greatest champions in league history.

While the Premier League season is nearing conclusion, there is still a lot to be decided including Champions League and Europa League spots, the fight for relegation and the FA Cup.

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25th Anniversary of the Hillsborough Stadium Disaster 4

Posted on April 18, 2014 by Martin Banks

Earlier this week marked the 25th anniversary of the worst stadium-related disaster in English sports. On April 15, 1989, the Hillsborough Stadium disaster occurred during an FA Cup semi-final match between Nottingham Forest and Liverpool at Sheffield Wednesday’s Hillsborough Stadium. The disaster resulted in the deaths of 96 people, who were honored at a ceremony at Anfield Stadium, the home of Liverpool Football Club. While Liverpool currently sits atop the English Premier League, this week serves as a period to remember the 96 people lost at Hillsborough Stadium 25 years ago.

hillsborough_stadium_disaster_17_october_2011

The Tragedy

25 years ago, the FA committee selected Hillsborough Stadium as the neutral site for the FA Cup semi-final match between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest. At that time, most English stadiums included high, steel fencing around the pitch in order to prohibit any rushing of the pitch, either friendly or hostile. Standing room for supporters was provided just beyond the fence. On the day of the disaster, only one terminal was opened for Liverpool fans to enter through, as a precaution to keep them separated from the Nottingham Forest fans. Massive overcrowding made the open terminal dangerous to both those who were attempting to get into the match and those who were being turned back for not having a ticket. In order to avoid injuries in the original entryway, police decided to open an exit gate that was designed to service departing fans.

The exit gate led to a narrow pathway to which fans flocked when it opened. Unfortunately for many fans, the narrow pathway led to the steel fence. As thousands of fans entered, many of them were pressed up against one another and a human crush formed. The police that were supposed to be stationed at the entrance of the gate should have cut off the flow of fans and direct them to another way in, but there were no policemen stationed outside the gate for unknown reasons.

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Report: Why are Punters Miffed at Liverpool? 0

Posted on January 27, 2014 by Danielle Ward

Liverpool and Aston Villa played to a 2-2 tie.

Liverpool and Aston Villa played to a 2-2 tie.

Bookmakers had their hearts in their mouths when Liverpool met Aston Villa at Anfield. They were quite desperate to see one of the most famous teams of the Premier League beaten, and Liverpool definitely helped them get closer when they were held for a 2-2 draw against Aston Villa. Liverpool had a shocker of a start when Villa raced to a 2-0 advantage in the first half but recovered very well. Daniel Sturridge and Steven Gerrard made the most of the opportunities and put the ball in the goal post to secure a draw and grab a point. Daniel Sturridge was able to score a goal before half time through Henderson’s flick, and Steven Gerrard’s penalty leveled the scores after Luis Suarez was tackled by the goal keeper Brad Guzan. The draw leaves Liverpool 2 points ahead of the 5th placed Everton and a point for Villa brings them in the top half of the League, but just 6 points ahead of the relegation zone. Nevertheless, it was still an unbelievable result considering the amount of money that has been put on the Reds.

Liverpool was as short as 1-5 for victory at the start and with such a form it is extremely tough for Brendan Rodgers to lead them to next season of the Champions League. But still Rodgers said that he was confident that his side will never give up the fight and despite the comeback he will regret the dismal first half by his team which eventually led to a drop of 2 points.  It would have otherwise been an easy win at home. He added that it was vital to get that goal before half time. Read the rest of this entry →

Dalglish Handed Task Of Bringing European Glory Back To Liverpool 2

Posted on August 25, 2011 by Rod Crowley

As football fans all over Europe ready themselves for the Champions League Group Stage draw this week, Liverpool fans will be looking the other way whilst remembering those halcyon days of the late 70s, early 80s when it was their club who were the best in Europe.

Liverpool won the first of their five European Cups back in 1977 with a team that had been put together by their legendary manager, Bill Shankly. It was just sad that he had retired by the time the team won the Trophy and the plaudits were taken by his replacement Bob Paisley.

The 1977 team still had several of the greats Shankly brought to Anfield, players such as Tommy Smith, an uncompromising defender and dedicated Liverpool player. Ian Callaghan one of the most reliable of all wing players as well as captain Emlyn Hughes, known as “Crazy Horse” to his team mates. The star of the show however was Kevin Keegan who had announced some months previously that he would be leaving the club at the end of that season to play for Hamburg in Germany.

The Reds won the final against Borussia Monchengladbach by 3-1 with the goals coming from Terry McDermott, Smith and a penalty by Phil Neal. The win gave them the distinction of becoming only the third British Club to win Europe’s most coveted Soccer trophy, following in the footsteps of Celtic, winners 10 years previously in 1967 and Manchester United who won in 1968. Read the rest of this entry →

  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Stan Jones – Weight Training Trailblazer
      October 11, 2020 | 1:48 pm
      Stan Jones

      The Sports Then and Now Athlete of the Month was one of the great linemen of his era and is considered a trailblazer for using weight training and conditioning to develop his skills.

      After a standout career at the University of Maryland, Stan Jones spent nine seasons as an offensive lineman for the Chicago Bears, making seven Pro Bowl appearances and earning first team All-Pro three times.

      In 1962, assistant coach George Allen suggested Jones move to defense to help solidify that unit for the Bears. He played both ways in 1962 and then in 1963 moved permanently to the defense.

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