An expensively assembled team in Sky Blue are featured on the cover of this edition of World Soccer, but it’s not Manchester City, it’s Lazio.
In Jersey, there is an experiment taking place where a referee can move a free-kick forward ten yards if a defending player shows dissent or engages in unsporting behaviour.
In this edition, World Soccer has an article on satellite channels and receivers that can pick up football from around the world. One of those clubs you could watch, is Anderlecht, who get a page feature about their recent downturn in form.
Drugs were a major issue this month, with rumours of failed tests in Serie A being covered up, and one journalist suggesting that referees should be subject to random testing like players.
There is an article based on a quote from Ray Clemence that there are too many foreign goalkeepers in England, looking at the shotstoppers of the twenty Premier League clubs, noting that the two most promising English prospects, Steve Simonsen and Richard Wright, are playing outside the top flight.
Lazio get a four page profile, having spent £70m to try and win the Serie A title. They did manage it in 2000, but not since. One of those player in the expensively assembled sky blue outfit ……. was Roberto Mancini.
Two of those pages are used for an interview with Christian Vieri, who left Lazio the following summer in a big money move, becoming the world’s most expensive player when he signed for Inter Milan.
German football is in crisis with the departure of Berti Vogts as national team manager, and the DFB being rebuffed, for various reasons, in their attempts to appoint Otto Rehhagel, Christoph Daum, Jupp Heynckes, Franz Beckenbauer, Ottmar Hitzfeld, Roy Hodgson and Paul Breitner, before eventually settling on Erich Ribbeck.
Davor Suker, top scorer at the summer’s World Cup gets a double page profile, while Croatia’s Euro 2000 Qualifying opponents, Yugoslavia, get a double page spread.
It’s not just Germany who had a change in manager, the departure of Spain manager Javier Clemente after a 3-2 defeat to Cyprus in their opening Euro 2000 Qualifier got a double page spread. He was immediately replaced by Jose Antonia Camacho.
Across the border in France, Vikash Dhorasoo gets a full page feature, as the most exciting prospect in French football.
Back in Germany, Keir Radnedge reports on the success of the two Munich clubs, currently first and second in the Bundesliga.
In England, Aston Villa are top with an almost all English team (Mark Bosnich from Australia being the only foreigner in their regular starting eleven) and have money to spend following the sale of Dwight Yorke. World Soccer suggest that money could be used to bid on another English player, Andy Cole of Manchester United.
A former manager of Cole, George Graham, has new employment, as manager of Tottenham Hotspur, a move that has divided the club’s fans, given his long association with Arsenal.
In Scotland, Marco Negri is in dispute with Rangers, with manager Dick Advocaat accusing him of lying to the media about his transfer situation.
Northern Ireland’s news is dominated by the resurgence of Linfield and Glentoran, looking to win their first title in 5 and 7 years respectively, but already pulling away from the chasing pack at the top of the table.
Also in dispute with their club like Marco Negri, was future Rangers players Frank and Ronald De Boer, who want to leave for Barcelona.
Bruce Grobbelaar made a comeback of sorts, playing for Zimbabwe at the age of 41, as well as being part of their coaching staff.
Brian Glanville uses his column to question Alex Ferguson’s record in the European Cup and World Cup, in the aftermath of a TV documentary where he referred to Paul Ince as “A big time charlie”
Glanville also uses his column to question the wisdom of those who want Terry Venables to return as England manager following England’s poor start to Euro 2000 qualification.