The pointers from the Community Shield final!

Another day, another final(well at least technically), another trophy- the story of a club that has become a trophy magnet over the course of the last two decades. While the trophy that was being fought for might itself be insignificant in the larger scheme of things but this game for Manchester United was about sending down, rather hammering down, a message to the bitters from the blue side of Manchester.

After another summer of big money purchases by the oil-backed Man City, the hoopla surrounding the Community Shield had consistently been on the up, their fans had been gearing up for what was going to be the long awaited dethronement of Man Utd from their trophy laden mantle and City were supposed to replace them. What followed in the game was another one of a long line of embarrassments for the Eastlands club on the pitch. United hammered them and a scoreline of 3-2 is quite flattering to them, for one side was distinctly superior on the day. And as they say, every moment is one where you learn new things and this one was no different, you would learnt new things or reaffirmed old beliefs, here’s a look at some of them (City fans can start to turn away right now).

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Football’s ‘Death Match’: Of pride and honour, of life and death

This August marked the 69th anniversary of probably the most despicable and dastardly moment in football history, a day that has haunted people, young and old, from Kiev for generations. Yet, this is a tale not widely known outside of the Soviet states apart from the movies made on the tragic events of Kiev. Its a story of footballers from Kiev(predominantly from Dynamo Kiev) who defeated Nazi Germany. Its about the tragedy that struck these footballers who were cruelly killed by the Nazi’s, all for what? For beating Nazi football teams and challenging the might and the sense of superiority of the Nazi’s.

A monument in honour of the players who played the ill-fated ‘Death Match’.

The Beginning

It all dates back to the summer of 1942 when the Nazi regime overthrew the Stalin regime in the city of Kiev. Stalin for long had supressed the Ukranians for his fear that Ukraine might seperate out of his huge communist empire, hence resorting to terrorising the nationalists but even Stalin hadn’t forseen what was going to happen. In June 1941, the Nazi forces invaded and took control of Kiev in attempt to decimate the Russian empire eventually resorting to malevolent attrocities on the people. The local football scene had been completely decimated by the new forces forcing most footballers to work in other industries.

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English Premier League: A look at the future stars

In a league as arduous and as tough to handle as the English Premier League and in an era of massive windfall of proven overseas talent being brought through at colossal prices to provide an immediate fix to match most premier league clubs’ ephemeral first team ambitions and targets, it isn’t really hard to see why the number of academy graduates at most Premier League clubs breaking into the first team picture have steadily dwindled in recent years, more so after the continued foreign investment in some of the now prominent clubs in this much publicised and talked about English Premier League .

Regardless to say, the path that a lot of these youngsters is blocked by more experienced ‘pros’ which has served as a deterrent to the budding careers of many a young footballers in recent years. It only takes a moment to remember the potential the likes of Michael Johnson, Fabio Borini, Jack Cork once displayed but have since moved on to other clubs permanently or on loan, for the longing of first team football. But on the flipsoide for every Johnson, Borini and co, there are young success stories who have broken through at their clubs having clutched at their oppurtunities that have arisen due to a multifarious set of reasons- from injury to lack of squad depth or even due to prolific performances for the reserves. The likes of Chris Smalling, Jack Wilshere, Seamus Coleman, Andy Carroll, Marc Albrighton, Phil Jones have all announced their arrival to the big time in the last twelve months. And there’s no reason why others would not emerge from the shadows this season, announcing their arrival. So here’s looking at some break through kids who could well breach the cuffs and make their way to their destiny of first team football.

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