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VOTE NOW: Goal Ultimate 11 powered by FIFA 22 - Who is the best defensive midfielder in the world?

We at Goal.com have teamed up with the gaming series FIFA 22 to identify the top 11 players existing in the game today.

Join us in the poll sponsored by FIFA 22 and vote for your favorite defensive midfielder below but before that here is a quick snippet on some of the players:


N'Golo Kanti | FIFA 22 Rating: 90 | One of the most important Chelsea players, his great importance was shown especially in the semi-finals and finals of the European Champions League, and based on his great solid performance his name was included at the time as one of the most prominent candidates for the "Ballon D'or" award.

Editors' Picks

Casemiro | FIFA 22 Rating: 89 | He has become one of most vital players, whether with Real Madrid or with the Brazil national team. He is excellent in defensive work and extracting the ball, and he is essentail for Real Madrid tactical balance.


Joshua Kimmich | FIFA 22 Rating: 89 | A player capable of providing an addition in all positions without exception, an indispensable player in the Bayern Munich squad.

Wilfried Andedi | FIFA 22 Rating: 85 | The player that Leicester City cannot do without, last season he became one of the most prominent players on the transfer list of major clubs, including Real Madrid.

Article continues below

Rodrigo | FIFA 22 Rating: 86| His great adaptation to Pep Guardiola's style of play made him one of the most prominent players who cannot be abandoned or ignored in his development


 

 

VOTE NOW: Goal Ultimate 11 powered by FIFA 22 - Who is the best left back in the world?

We at Goal.com have teamed up with the gaming serires FIFA 22 to identify the top 11 players exisiting in the game today.

Join us in the poll sponsored by FIFA 22 and vote for your favorite left back below but before that here is a quick snippet on some of the players:


Alphonso Davies | FIFA 22 Rating: 83| Alphonso Davies is a talent that develops at lightning speed...just like his unbelievable speed on the court. The Canadian player has proven on more than one occasion that he represents the modern full-back with all his attributes: fast, excellent in handling the ball, skillful and offers a great addition in the offensive part.

Jordi Alba | FIFA 22 Rating: 86 | He suffered a decline in level at one point, but remains the number 1 full-back in Barcelona. Speed, intelligence and the ability to add offensively.


Andrew Robertson | FIFA 22 Rating: 87 | He may be the most prominent player in his position and the most consistent in his level. A tireless full-back to provide the addition, whether defensively or offensively. Fast, physically generous and his crosses are very accurate.

Teo Hernandez | FIFA 22 Rating: 84| One of the most prominent elements of the distinguished Muslan season 2020-2021, a modern, fast-back, with great advantages on both the offensive and defensive levels.


Luke Shaw | FIFA 22 Rating: 84 | The most prominent moments that Luke Shaw starred in are during Euro 2020 because of the great levels that he achieved, especially after he scored his country's goal in the final against Italy, and before that he made 3 goals for the Three Lions.
 

 

Man City correspondent Jonathan Smith reveals his men’s GOAL50 top 10

Fans will decide the order of this year’s GOAL50 lists but our correspondents are also sharing their picks during the voting period
(Originally posted by Jonathan Smith)

Goal Ultimate 11 powered by FIFA 22 | David Alaba is the best left center back in the world!

Real Madrid's centerback David Alaba was voted as one of the two "best center-backs in the world" beating out Georgio Chiellini and becoming the fourth player to cement his position in the Goal's Top eleven powered by FIFA 22 as we attempt to identify who you think are the best footballers around the world.


The vote was defined as a sweep for David Alaba, who received 58% of the total votes (+1281), while Giorgio Chiellini came second with 21% of the vote (+1281). In third place came Manchester City defender Aymeric Laporte, who received 10% of the total votes (229), ahead of Kimbebe with 161 votes, and Pau Torres, who received 2% of the votes with 53.

AFF Suzuki Cup: Malaysia, Singapore and each participant's full squad, captain, star player and head coach

Your one-stop guide to all 10 teams that will compete in the 2020 AFF Suzuki Cup
(Originally posted by Ooi Kin Fai)

Liverpool correspondent Neil Jones reveals his men’s GOAL50 top 10

Fans will decide the order of this year’s GOAL50 lists but our correspondents are also sharing their picks during the voting period
Original author: Neil Jones

Diego Maradona's last international match - Who were his teammates and where are they now?

Maradona played his last international match for La Albiceleste at the 1994 World Cup...
(Originally posted by Ritabrata Banerjee)

Arsenal correspondent Charles Watts reveals his men’s GOAL50 top 10

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(Originally posted by Charles Watts)

Call of Duty: Vanguard is just the beginning: Warzone revealed it’s new “Pacific Map: Caldera.. Here’s everything you need to know

Warzone will finally get a new full-sized map for the first time since the game launched in March 2020.

Call of Duty will leave behind its fictional Eastern European landscape in favor of a more tropical setting in the Pacific with the new map: “Caldera”

The map is set on a dormant volcano and has over 200 points of interest throughout the map.

It will offer a different battle royale experience than Verdansk, with forests, beaches, ruins and even a dormant volcano, as well as planes and AA trucks you can use to explore the island.

Built on the same tech and engine as Call of Duty: Vanguard, this map is visually appealing as it is ready to support this new game’s armaments, and will support fully optimized cross-play, cross-progression, and cross-gen support.

Pre- launch event November 24th:

Call of Duty teased its players by revealing a special event to uncover more about the mysterious Caldera map by digging up Secrets of the Pacific.

This limited-time event developed by Beenox will grant users vital information on Caldera and its various points of interest

Releasing date:

Warzone's new Pacific map Caldera will be released December 2nd‫.‬

However, anyone that owns Call of Duty: Vanguard, which released November 5, before the launch of Season 1 on December 2, will get 24 hours of early access to the new Warzone map

Bengaluru FC: ISL 2021-22 fixtures, squad, strengths, weaknesses and star players

Marco Pezzaiuoli has a task at hand to re-establish the Blues as a title contender...

Bengaluru FC failed to live up to expectations in the previous season of the Indian Super League (ISL) as they finished on the seventh spot in the league table. After a string of disappointing results, Carles Cuadrat departed the club on mutual consent but the performances hardly improved under interim manager Naushad Moosa. In 11 matches, he managed to win just two games which forced the club to name a new head coach in Marco Pezzaiuoli who took over the reins after the ISL season. 

They have made wholesale changes to the squad as well with five new overseas signings. Their Indian contingent has also been reinforced by some fresh faces in Jayesh Rane, Rohit Kumar, and Danish Farooq in midfield, Bidyasagar Singh and Harmanpreet Singh in attack, and Sarthak Golui in defence. 

Let us have a look at Bengaluru FC's squad. 

Bengaluru FC Squad

Goalkeepers:  Gurpreet Singh, Lara Sharma, Sharon Padattil. 

Defenders:  Alan Costa, Pratik Chaudhari, Wungngayam Muirang, Sarthak Golui, Ajith Kumar, Ashique Kuruniyan, Namgyal Bhutia, Parag Shrivas, Yrondu Musavu-King, Biswa Darjee, Roshan Naorem. 

Midfielders:   Ajay Chhetri, Bruno Silva, Damaitphang Lyngdoh, Danish Farooq, Iman Basafa, Jayesh Rane, Rohit Kumar, Suresh Wangjam. 

Forwards:  Akashdeep Singh, Bidyasagar Singh, Cleiton Silva, Edmund Lalrindika, Harmanpreet Singh, Leon Augustine, Prince Ibara, Sivashakti Narayanan, Sunil Chhetri, Udanta Singh. 

What are the strengths of Bengaluru FC? 

Marco Pezzaiuoli has been with the team for quite a few months now. Although the performances in the AFC Cup were a disappointment, it provided a platform for the new coach to gauge the side and make the necessary adjustments for ISL. So, when some of the other sides might struggle initially to settle down under a new coach, Bengaluru can skip that bit. 

In Cleiton Silva, Sunil Chhetri, and Prince Ibara, they have a good attacking line-up. The Bengaluru FC skipper, despite his age, shows no signs of slowing down and a lot will rest on his form. They also have resources on the bench in Edmund Lalrindika, Sivasakti Narayanan who will be raring to make an impact coming off the bench. Sivasakthi has scored for fun in the domestic youth leagues and is a future prospect for the Blues. 

In Suresh Wangjam, Bruno Ramires, and Iranian Iman Basafa, they have enough resources in the centre of the park. This midfield trio is key to Bengaluru's hopes of resurrection after the departures of Erik Paartalu and Dimas Delgado. Wangjam has excelled in national colours and will hope to continue his form in ISL as well. Meanwhile, Ramires can be expected to control the tempo with his composure and wide range of passing skills. He played 1117 minutes in the Portuguese top-tier league in the previous season and was a key member for Belenenses. 

Whereas, under the sticks they have Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, the first choice keeper of the Indian national team who is arguably the best goalkeeper in the country.

What are the weaknesses of Bengaluru FC? 

Although they have got two overseas centre backs in Alan Costa and Yrondu Musavu-King, they failed to provide stability against ATK Mohun Bagan in the AFC Cup match where the Blues went down by 2-0. They also lack a dependable Indian centre-back. Both Pratik Chaudhari and Sathak Golui are prone to errors and are not comfortable with the ball at their feet. 

Moreover, Ashique Kuruniyan is yet to get back his best form after returning from injury. The other wing-back options in Roshan Singh, Parag Srivas and Ajith Kumar are not convincing either. So, it remains a challenge for Pezzaiuoli to organise his defence. Plus, Ashique's best position is in attack and it might do no good to both the player and the club if he is continued to be deployed as a left-back.

Who are the key players of Bengaluru FC? 

The three key players of Bengaluru FC who might be the difference-makers are Sunil Chhetri, Gurpreet Singh Sandhu and Bruno Ramires. 

What are the fixtures of Bengaluru FC? 

Date Fixture Time Venue
November 20 Bengaluru FC vs NorthEast United FC 19:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
November 24 Odisha FC vs Bengaluru FC 19:30 Tilak Maidan Stadium
November 28 Bengaluru FC vs Kerala Blasters 19:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
December 04 Bengaluru FC vs Mumbai City FC 21:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
December 08 Hyderabad FC vs Bengaluru FC 19:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
December 11  FC Goa vs Bengaluru FC 21:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
December 16 Bengaluru FC vs ATK Mohun Bagan 19:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
December 20 Jamshedpur FC vs Bengaluru FC 19:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
December 30 Chennaiyin FC vs Bengaluru FC 19:30 Tilak Maidan Stadium
January 4 Bengaluru FC vs SC East Bengal 19:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
(Originally posted by Soham Mukherjee)

ISL 2021-22: Hyderabad FC - Squad, Fixtures, Strengths, Weakness, & Key Players

Hyderabad FC will eye a play-offs spot as they prepare for their third season in the ISL...

Hyderabad will kick off their 2021-22 Indian Super League (ISL) campaign with a clash against Chennaiyin at the Bambolim Stadium in Goa on November 23.

The Nizams began their pre-season training on September 8 in Hyderabad and is now currently in Goa.  finished their previous season at the fifth spot with six wins, 11 draws and three losses from their stipulated 20 matches.

As Hyderabad are set to start their season on November 23, we take a look at the strengths and weaknesses of Manolo Marquez's side.

Hyderabad FC Squad

Goalkeepers: Laxmikant Kattimani, Lalbiakhlua Jongte, Gurmeet Singh, Manas Dubey

Defenders: Nim Dorjee Tamang, Chinglensana Singh, Juanan, Akash Mishra, Dimple Bhagat, Nikhil Prabhu, Souvik Chakraborty, Asish Rai, Kynsailang Khongsit.

Midfielders:  Joao Victor, Mohammed Yasir, Edu Garcia, Sahil Tavora, Hitesh Sharma, Abdul Rabeeh, Mark Zothanpuia, Nikhil Poojary, Halicharan Narzary.

Forwards: Joel Chianese, Javier Siverio, Aniket Jadhav, Abhishek Halder, Bartholomew Ogbeche, Rohit Danu, Ishan Dey. 

What are the strengths of Hyderabad FC? 

After an impressive second season in the ISL where Hyderabad narrowly missed out on reaching the play-offs under the tutelage of Manolo Marquez, the South Indian outfit will be eager to better their results in the upcoming season and finish among the top four teams for the first time in their brief history.

Hyderabad have rebuilt their squad well this season by adding some quality foreign players who have prior experience of playing in ISL. From former Mumbai City striker Bartholomew Ogbeche to ATK Mohun Bagan's Edu Garcia and Bengaluru FC's Juanan, the club has roped in some big names who will add steel to the squad.

The strength of the current Hyderabad squad lies in their attack. The addition of Javier Siverio, Ogbeche and Edu Garcia to an already solid attack force has increased their firepower manifold. They already have Joel Chianese who did well last season. There is young Rohit Danu who has been earmarked as a future star and Aniket Jadhav has also joined from Jamshedpur FC,

What are the weaknesses of Hyderabad FC? 

If the attack of Hyderabad FC is their strength then the goalkeeping position is their biggest concern. The only experienced custodian they have in their ranks is Laxmikant Kattimani who had played 14 out of the 20 matches last season where he conceded 12 goals.

The former FC Goa man has a reputation as an error-prone goalkeeper, especially in crucial situations. Lack of a quality shot stopper under the bar can prove to be a major problem for the club during the 2021-22 season.

One area we can point out would be a slight lack of experience in central midfield. 

Who are the key players of Hyderabad FC? 

The three key players of Hyderabad FC who can prove to be the difference-makers are Bartholomew Ogbeche, Edu Garcia, and Juanan. 

What are the fixtures of Hyderabad FC? 

All matches are to kick off at 7:30 pm IST. 

Date Time (IST) Match
Nov 23 7:30 PM Hyderabad vs Chennaiyin
Nov 27 7:30 PM Mumbai City vs Hyderabad
Dec 2 7:30 PM Jamshedpur vs Hyderabad
Dec 8 7:30 PM Hyderabad vs Bengaluru
Dec 13 7:30 PM Hyderabad vs NorthEast United
Dec 18 7:30 PM FC Goa vs Hyderabad
Dec 23 7:30 PM Hyderabad vs East Bengal
Dec 28 7:30 PM Hyderabad vs Odisha
Jan 5 7:30 PM ATK Mohun Bagan vs Hyderabad
Jan 9 7:30 PM Kerala Blasters vs Hyderabad
(Originally posted by Soham Mukherjee)

Odisha FC: ISL 2021-22 fixtures, squad, strengths, weaknesses and star players

Kiko Ramirez will hope the Juggernauts can better their performances from last season...

Odisha FC had a disastrous campaign in the previous season of the Indian Super League (ISL) as they finished on the 11th spot. They managed to win just two matches and conceded a whopping 44 goals, the worst defensive record in the league. 

They needed to make changes and so they did. They have got in Kiko Ramirez as their new manager and an entirely new foreign contingent to turn around their fortunes. Let us have a look at their squad for the upcoming season. 

Odisha FC Squad

Goalkeepers: Arshdeep Singh, Ravi Kumar, Kamaljit Singh. 

Defenders:  Gaurav Bora, Lalruathara, Sahil Panwar, Hendry Antonay, Lalhrezuala Sailung, Sebastian, Hector Rodas, Sahil Panwar, Deven, Victor Mongil. 

Midfielders:  Javi Hernandez, Jerry Mawihmingthanga, Vinit Rai, Nandakumar Sekar, Isak Ralte, Thoiba Singh, Paul Ramfangzauva, Liridon Krasniqi, Isaac Vanmalsawma, Nikhil Raj. 

Forwards: Aridai Cabrera, Jonathas, Akshunna Tyagi, Daniel Lalhlimpuia. 

What are the strengths of Odisha FC? 

Odisha FC have got some quality players at the centre of the park. Javi Hernandez will add composure and stability whereas Vinit Rai will look to partner the Spaniard. Hernandez is a familiar face in ISL and during his tenure with ATK and then subsequently with ATK Mohun Bagan he has already proven his mettle. If these two players can hold the midfield, Odisha will hope for better performances. 

In attack, the goal-scoring responsibility will primarily rest on Brazilian forward Jonathas. He had a decent season with Hatta in the UAE Pro League where he scored six goals in 10 matches. He has the experience of playing in some of the popular clubs across Europe like Elche, Real Sociedad, and Hannover 96. In the 2019-20 season, he scored seven goals in 14 matches for Elche in the Segunda division. Whereas in 2014-15 he netted 14 times in 34 games in La Liga for the same club including a few strikes including braces against Espanyol and Athletic Bilbao. 

There is, however, Jerry Mawihmingthunga who performed well as a winger last season. Odisha will hope that the winger will conitnue to build on his performances.

They also have a surprise package in Akshunna Tyagi, who has been promoted to the senior team after impressing in the domestic youth league. The 19-year-old scored 20 of the 45 goals Odisha scored in just 14 games in the AIFF Elite League. This could be a breakout season for the youngster.

What are the weaknesses of Odisha FC? 

Odisha FC have done their homework in pre-season in getting a new coach and a set of overseas players, and yet there is a hint of inexperience in the squad that might come to haunt them. Apart from Javi and Victor Mongil, none of them has played on Indian soil before and settling down in ISL will be a challenge for them.

Moreover, players like Aridai Cabrera, Liridon Krasniqi have not been in the best of form in the previous season. Cabrera for Las Palmas in the Segunda division had three goals and two assists in 21 appearances whereas Krasniqi during his loan spell from Johor Darul Ta'zim to Newcastle Jets played just 184 minutes of football. 

Moreover, their Indian contingent lacks a bit of experience. Players like Gourav Bora, Paul Ramfangzauva, Nandakumar Sekar were tipped to be the next big things in Indian football but have not lived up to expectations so far. They had the poorest defence in ISL in 2020-21, and it remains to be seen how Hector Rodas and Victor Mongil perform at the back.

Mongil did not impress with ATK, whereas Rodas joins the ISL outfit from Cultural Leonesa who ply their trade in the Spanish third division. Even under the sticks, they lack a safe pair of hands as both Arshdeep Singh and Kamaljit Singh are prone to making mistakes. 

Who are the key players of Odisha FC? 

The three key players of Odisha FC who might be the difference-makers are Javi Hernandez, Jonathas, and Vinit Rai. 

What are the fixtures of Odisha FC? 

All matches are to kick off at 7:30 pm IST. 

Date Fixture Venue
November 24 Odisha FC vs Bengaluru FC Tilak Maidan Stadium
November 30 Odisha FC vs SC East Bengal Tilak Maidan Stadium
December 05 Kerala Blasters FC vs Odisha FC Tilak Maidan Stadium
December 10 Odisha FC vs NorthEast United FC Tilak Maidan Stadium
December 14 Odisha FC vs Jamshedpur FC Tilak Maidan Stadium
December 18 Chennaiyin FC vs Odisha FC Tilak Maidan Stadium
December 24 Odisha FC vs FC Goa Tilak Maidan Stadium
December 28 Hyderabad FC vs Odisha FC Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
January 3 Odisha FC vs Mumbai City FC Tilak Maidan Stadium
January 8 ATK Mohun Bagan vs Odisha FC JLN Stadium, Fatorda
(Originally posted by Soham Mukherjee)

27 of the best gifts for West Ham fans in 2021

Looking for the perfect gift for West Ham fan in your life? From Declan Rice mugs to official team shirts, these are the best gifts available.

All products featured on our site are independently chosen by us. When you purchase something through the links provided, we may earn a commission.

As starts to the season go, the front of West Ham’s 2021/22 season hasn’t been too bad. Sitting fourth in the Premier League as of November, worse things could happen. This bodes well for Mark Noble’s final season wearing claret and blue as he still remains the longest-serving current football player in Europe.

When it comes to presents, knowing someone who’s a football fan is a blessing, as there are tonnes of gift options just waiting to be given. Though when there is so much out there, trawling through the internet for the perfect gift can feel like a sport in itself. 

On top of this, the last thing you want is the recipient smiling politely as they open yet another gift they already own. Luckily, we’ve found the best quirky and unique gifts that will make them smile for all the right reasons. 

There are claret-coloured rubber ducks for those who are forever running bubble baths, memory foam slippers for those who like to curl up on the sofa to watch the match, and long-sleeved jerseys for those who brave the cold.

So whether you’re looking for a Christmas present for your dad, a birthday gift for your son or daughter, or maybe even a treat for yourself, here are the 27 best gifts currently available for West Ham fans.

£10.00 and under

When it comes to gifts, you can’t go wrong with a good old fashioned mug. Perfect for all lovers of tea, coffee and hot chocolate, these gifts are a way of showing pride for your team all year round.

Get it from FOCO for £10.00 (Rice), £7.50 (crest) and £10.00 (rainbow)

Make bathtime a little bit more West Ham with this rubber duck. Equally enjoyable for kids in a bubble bath to play around with or as a floating companion during a grown-up soak.  Plus, at £6.00 it’s a great shout for a Secret Santa gift for a Hammers fan.

Get it from FOCO for £6.00

This West Ham tankard goes in the freezer to make sure beers and other cold drinks are icy cold. Perfect on matchdays for those who’ve swapped the stadium for the sofa after a long lockdown.

Get it from Amazon for £9.75

 These socks have a message written on the soles of the feet for those people who prefer not to be disturbed whilst West Ham are on the telly. 

Get them from Amazon for £7.99

This official West Ham wall calendar for 2022 is perfect for those who like staying organised or for someone who might need extra hints to remember special occasions. 

Get it from Amazon for £8.98

This annual makes the perfect gift for every Hammers fanatic. It’s filled with fun activities and interesting reads plus in-depth profiles of all the team’s players.  

Get it from Amazon for £5.00

These 60cm long vintage street signs are a stylish way of displaying fan status around the house. It’s a big step up from a Blu Tack-cornered poster and a cool way of showing appreciation for your team.

Get it from FOCO for £10.00

£25 and under

These ceramic stoneware egg cups have been dipped in claret and blue, have a cool paint-splattered design and make a great and useful gift for any age.

Get them from FOCO for £12.00

This cool claret and blue paint splattered metal water bottle keeps water super cold and is perfect for those Hammers fans who are eco-conscious.

Get it from FOCO for £15.00

These super cosy memory foam slippers are the perfect gift for West Ham fans who like to put their feet up when watching football on TV. Plus, those mornings are only getting colder and these will help to take the chill off the air in style.

Get them from FOCO for £20.00

If you’d like to buy a Hammers fan a piece of clothing, a football scarf is a great, one-size-fits-all accessory. Perfect for keeping warm on chilly match days.

Get it from JD Sports for £12.00

Know a West Ham fan who hates touching things like elevator buttons or punching in their pin at ATMs? These nifty “no-touch” keyrings are designed to do all the nasty work for you, so you can press the button at traffic lights without having to immediately get out the hand sanitiser.

Get them from FOCO for £15.00

This quirky hand-painted West Ham gnome is a lovely gift for those fans who like to display little nick-nacks around the house and garden to remind them of happy memories. 

Get it from FOCO for £20.00

This compact set makes an excellent gift for every West Ham fan who likes to keep themselves maintained. Perfect for parents and also big kids who are flying the nest.

Get it from Amazon for £14.99

This 2021 published book pays tribute to West Ham’s spiritual home, Upton Park, and particularly the memorable final night there in 2016. This book would make the perfect gift for anyone who stepped foot in The Boleyn Ground.

Get it from Amazon for £12.35

The Greatest Escape takes the reader back to the 2006/7 season when West Ham narrowly avoided relegation after putting up the fight of a lifetime. A great present for anyone who thinks back to that time with a smile.

Get it from Amazon for £12.35

These incredible West Ham custom beer mats are the brainchild of twin brothers at Boot and Ball. With graphically sophisticated retro designs, fans have their favourite players commemorated in traditional beer mat form in a way that feels like art.

Get them from Amazon for £14.95

Footballs are notoriously difficult to wrap, though that doesn’t stop them from being an extremely popular gift to give, and this durable ball from Umbro is no exception.

Get it from JD Sports for £17.00

This West Ham BRXLZ logo kit is a lovely gift for those who like to display quirky merchandise in their house. Kids and adults alike will have fun assembling all the brick pieces to make up a pixelated version of the iconic crossed hammers emblem. But don’t be fooled into thinking it’s a small and simple design – it’s made up of 888 pieces.

Get it from FOCO for £25.00

No budget

This super-soft Sherpa backed fleece blanket is ultra-cosy. Big enough to cover a double bed, it’s perfect for keeping extra warm during winter.

Get it from FOCO for £35.00

This A3 sized book is filled with full-colour newspaper pages heralding West Ham’s most iconic moments dating over 100 years. It makes for a really thoughtful gift that can be personalised with a nice label on the inside page at a later date.

Get it from Amazon for £39.99

Relive West Ham’s centenary year with this 2000 replica retro shirt from Score Draw. The number 100 appears in a “Forever Blowing Bubbles" design embedded in the fabric which bears the iconic Dagenham Motors sponsor.

Get it from JD Sports for £35.00

Be prepared for East London’s chilliest days with this long-sleeved variation on this season’s home shirt. It’s a new classic West Ham shirt made from the famous claret and blue colourway.

Get it from Umbro for £65.00

Be the one to gift your niece, nephew or grandchild their very first West Ham kit.

Get it from Umbro for £40.00

This set of three matching West ham school bags are perfect for those who want to make sure everybody knows exactly which team they support. Consisting of a backpack, a drawstring gym bag and a pencil case, this is quite the set of kit.

Get it from Umbro for £33.00

This West Ham-themed festive knitted jumper actually lights up to show the crowd spreading cheer. As gaudy Christmas jumpers go, this one is actually quite stylish.

Get it from FOCO for £50.00

These BRXLZ mini versions of the old Boleyn Ground and the new London Stadium will keep West Ham fans young and old occupied for hours fitting together all the puzzle pieces. There are over 3,000 pieces included in each set. which when put together create a lovely and quirky West Ham memento.

Get it from FOCO for £60.00 each

Man Utd correspondent Charlotte Duncker reveals her men’s GOAL50 top 10

Fans will decide the order of this year’s GOAL50 lists but our correspondents are also sharing their picks during the voting period
Original author: Charlotte Duncker

'Being gay will be part of everyday life in football' - England star Coady on his firm stance as an outspoken LGBT ally

Earlier this year, the Wolves captain was named Football Ally of the Year at the British LGBT Awards, and tells GOAL why equality means so much to him

A favourite topic for social media gossips, football rumour-mongers and shock jock pundits is when a Premier League player will come out as gay, and who it might be.

For Conor Coady, however, it is not a topic for salacious debate – and he wants to change and challenge that attitude.

Earlier this year, Coady was named Football Ally of the Year at the British LGBT Awards, winning a public vote ahead of notable names including Jordan Henderson, Jurgen Klopp and Gary Lineker, following his involvement in a Rainbow Laces event in which he directly stated any player struggling with their sexuality or identity should feel they have a confidante in him.

It is a commitment the England international and Wolves captain forcefully and repeatedly makes in an exclusive chat with GOAL, and says while there may be negativity outside the dressing room about gay footballers, inside it would simply be a non-issue and is something he, and his team-mates, are waiting to celebrate.

Speaking via Zoom from the Wolves training ground, he says: "I can only speak on behalf of being a footballer, and on behalf of the team I am involved in. I'm a fan first and foremost, but it is hard for me to speak about that [media and fan reaction].

"As a footballer, I can say that if anyone wants to come out, wants to speak to me, have a chat about things, then anyone in our dressing room would be open. I have never come across a footballer where this would actually affect them [negatively], if a player wanted to do that.

"By the way, I think the first player to do it would get a reaction, then for me, it would just become everyday life. That's something everyone is waiting for."

Men's football is something of an outlier in world sport by having no major players or figures at the top of the game who are out publicly as LGBT, although Adelaide United star Josh Cavallo provided a beacon in October when he became the only current top-level male professional footballer in the world to come out as gay.

While Cavallo could help others feel more comfortable to be themselves in the game, the list of footballers in the UK who have felt comfortable coming out as gay during their playing career is particularly short.

Former top flight footballer Justin Fashanu came out in 1990 while still playing, but remains the only British player to do so. Ex-Everton and Aston Villa midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger revealed his sexuality only after retiring, while those within the game who have felt comfortable coming out work in non-league, away from the harshest spotlight.

That is why Coady feels so passionate about equality for LGBT+ people – not necessarily because of any personal connection, but as someone who has lived within and loved football all his life, he cannot bear the idea of anyone not feeling as if the game is for them.

He says: "I'm a big advocate that our sport is the best sport in the world, and I honestly believe it should be a sport for everybody. We should try our best to make everyone feel included, feel as one.

"Equality is a massive word, and when it comes to LGBTQ stuff, I'm big on making people feel involved. If someone wants to enjoy watching or playing football but is not feeling part of it, that would be horrible. The word equality is massive for me, and if I can help anyone in any way possible, that's a really big part of it."

Part of England's squad in their run to the final of Euro 2020 – although he did not play a minute of the tournament – Coady saw at close quarters how Liverpool captain Henderson made his own support for a queer Three Lions fan via social media clear, while squad mate Marcus Rashford's own social conscience has been on show constantly over the last 18 months.

Speaking with passion and engagement throughout our chat, it is clear how important Coady feels it is that top-level footballers speak out on issues that matter to them, and how this generation of players feel they can lead the way in conversations on matters such as LGBTQ equality – especially thanks to the change in the societal landscape that social media has created.

"Social media plays a massive part these days, it gives you a platform to speak and try to help people. It can go the other way, as we've seen with abuse in the last few months, but from footballers to the public, to people in the LGBTQ community, it is a massive part of trying to help" he says.

"Footballers have noticed now they can use their platform to try and help as much as possible, and that's just what we're all trying to do. Ask any footballer in the world, and I think they would say they would help if they can."

One thing Coady is clear on is that a gay footballer should not only be supported if he plays well – and that any downturn in form should not open the door for homophobic criticism or abuse.

Much of the qualified support from pundits has been predicated on the idea that any gay footballer would be backed by their team-mates as long as performances on the pitch are maintained, while Collin Martin, who plays for USL Championship side San Diego Loyal, admitted last year to GOAL that his form suffered after coming out due to the pressure placed upon him.

Coady says: "That to me is wrong, every single one of us goes through a downturn in form at some point in our careers, more than once, so that is something I don't agree with at all.

"The big thing for me is to be there for anyone who wants to come out, and once they're out that's that, it's normal, it's life. You don't then associate that with playing ability, you associate that with your team and working as hard for them as they do for you.

"Every one of us goes through bad form and it has nothing to do with sexuality, to say otherwise is daft, and that [criticising a player based on their sexuality] would never be the case within our dressing room."

While English men's football still treats homosexuality as something of a taboo subject, the women's game – notably the Women's Super League – features countless examples of LGBT stars at the height of their playing career, from Pernille Harder to Sam Kerr.

For Coady, this normality is exactly what should be aimed for – and the insistence from some quarters that it would be impossible due to the larger focus and coverage of the men's game is a source of genuine annoyance for him and other allies within football.

"There's a lot to be admired about the women's game and how it has developed over the last few years. That's the biggest thing we can take, how normal it is [to be an out LGBT player]. I get asked the question all the time, and I laugh, because within our dressing room it gets to you a bit that people make an issue of these things.

"There's a lot we can learn from the women's game, from how normal these situations are, and that's where we need to get to in the men's game."

Coady also says the sport should make sure transgender footballers are given fair opportunities to play the game, following the recent release of a controversial and much-criticised report by the UK Sports Councils Equality Group which suggested inclusion of trans people in non-elite sport was "incompatable" with fairness.

Coady said: "Football is a game that should be for everyone. It is the most exciting sport in the world, and should be enjoyed by absolutely everybody.

"People a lot more important will be having discussions above me, but being a footballer, the biggest thing is that we want everyone to enjoy the game that we love. Football is for everyone who wants to be involved, and I will never go away from that on that matter, or any matter."

While Coady received his Football Ally award through his involvement in Rainbow Laces, he does not feel the annual events and discussions do enough – and that he would be proud to wear the rainbow colours on his captain's armband all season.

He says: "We obviously do Rainbow Laces once a year, once a season we wear the captain's armband and people talk a lot more. We can do more of that, week in week out, instead of once a season.

"It's hard for me to come up with ideas as I'm not in charge, but the stuff we do already is good, and we can always do more for helping LGBTQ people."

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(Originally posted by Ritabrata Banerjee)

Chennaiyin FC: ISL 2021-22 fixtures, squad, strengths, weaknesses and star players

Can a new-look Chennaiyin FC establish themselves as the title contenders once again?

Chennaiyin FC had a disappointing campaign in the previous season of the Indian Super League (ISL) where they finished eighth with just 20 points on the board from an equal number of matches. A leaky defence along with a toothless attack did not help their cause as they conceded 23 times and could score only 17 goals. 

However, to script a turnaround, they have got on board a new technical team under head coach Bozidar Bandovic. Apart from retaining a dependable player like Rafael Crivellaro they have roped in five new overseas faces. The two-time ISL champions have signed a few new Indian players like Jobby Justin, Ninthoi Meetei, Narayan Das, Debjit Majumdar to name a few. 

Let us have a look at Chennaiyin FC's squad. 

Chennaiyin FC Squad

Goalkeepers:  Debjit Majumdar, Vishal Kaith, Devansh Dabas. 

Defenders:  Balaji Ganesan, Davinder Singh, Deepak Devrani, Slavko Damjanovic, Narayan das, Jerry Lalrinzuala, Salam Ranjan Singh, Reagan Singh. 

Midfielders:  Vladimir Koman, Johnson Mathews, Syed Suhail Pasha, Subhadip Majhi, Melroy Assisi, Germanpreet Singh, Ariel Borysiuk, Rafael Crivellaro, Edwin Vanspaul, Anirudh Thapa.

Forwards: Ninthoi Meetei, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Rahim Ali, Mirlan Murzaev, Jobby Justin, Lukasz Gikiewicz. 

What are the strengths of Chennaiyin FC? 

It is often said that to get the three points a team must more often than not win the midfield battle. And Chennaiyin FC have got some quality players at the centre of the park. As mentioned earlier, they have retained Crivellaro who will be their linchpin in the attacking third. In Anirudh Thapa, the team has one of the best domestic midfielders who likes to make his presence felt.

Moreover, they have signed an attacking midfielder in Vladimir Koman who has the experience of playing in some of the popular European outfits like Sampdoria and AS Monaco. He has appeared 36 times for Hungary and has seven strikes to his name. Meanwhile, Ariel Borysiuk will be present to add more steel in midfield. He was a regular for Jagiellonia Bialystok in the Polish league and made 15 appearances in the previous season. 

Chennaiyin have reinforced their forward line as well. They scored just 17 goals in 20 matches in the previous season and hence they have left no stone unturned to make sure that there is no dearth of goals. Apart from signing Jobby Justin, the Marina Machans have roped in two overseas forwards in Lukasz Gikiewicz and Mirlan Murzaev. Gikiewicz stands tall 6'2'' and can be a perfect target-man, especially with his superior aerial ability. Whereas, Murzaev was in terrific form last season for Dordoi Bishkek in the Kazakh League where he scored seven goals and provided seven assists in just 17 games. He is a versatile player and can play in any position in a front three. 

Not to forget they already have Lallianzuala Chhangte and Rahim Ali in the ranks, while club skipper Crivellaro will also be expected to chip in with some goals. There is little doubt that coach Bandovic will be spoilt for choice and now it is up to him to make the right recipe with the available ingredients. 

What are the weaknesses of Chennaiyin FC? 

Chennaiyin's defence is an area of concern. They have got just one overseas defender in Slavko Damjanovic and a lot will rest on the form of the Serbian. What will assure Chennaiyin fans is that he was a regular for his previous outfit Backa Topola in Serbia and played 990 minutes in the top tier. 

But his defensive partners are not known to be sure-footed. Chennaiyin have got a couple of domestic options in Salam Ranjan Singh and Deepak Devrani but none of them oozes the confidence that you expect from a centre-back. While Salam was primarily a benchwarmer in the last couple of seasons, this will be Devrani's first season in ISL. Meanwhile, Raegan Singh and Narayan Das are likely to be the first-choice wing-backs, who are prone to make errors and does not provide a sense of assurance.

Moreover, none of the new players signed are established stars and how they step up to the challenge will be keenly watched. 

Who are the key players of Chennaiyin FC? 

The three key players of Chennaiyin FC who might be the difference-makers are Anirudh Thapa, Rafael Crivellaro, and Mirlan Murzaev. 

What are the fixtures of Chennaiyin FC? 

Date Fixture Time Venue
November 23 Hyderabad FC vs Chennaiyin FC 19:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
November 29 NorthEast United vs Chennaiyin FC 19:30 PJN Stadium, Fatorda
December 03 Chennaiyin FC vs SC East Bengal 19:30 Tilak Maidan Stadium
December 11 ATK Mohun Bagan vs Chennaiyin FC 19:30 PJN Stadium, Fatorda
December 15 Mumbai City FC vs Chennaiyin FC 19:30 PJN Stadium, Fatorda
December 18  Chennaiyin FC vs Odisha FC 19:30 Tilak Maidan Stadium
December 22 Chennaiyin FC vs Kerala Blasters FC 19:30 Tilak Maidan Stadium
December 30 Chennaiyin FC vs Bengaluru FC 19:30 Tilak Maidan Stadium
January 2 Jamshedpur FC vs Chennaiyin 21:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
January 8 FC Goa vs Chennaiyin FC 21:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
(Originally posted by Soham Mukherjee)

Mumbai City FC: ISL 2021-22 fixtures, squad, strengths, weaknesses and star players

Having put together a strong squad despite the exit of a few key players, Mumbai City will be the team to beat...

Mumbai City FC will be the team to beat in the upcoming edition of the Indian Super League (ISL). They are the defending champions, having won both the league shield and the play-off title, and have enough firepower despite a few changes to that squad. 

They also have a new manager in charge, with Sergio Lobera departing for a different challenge. It remains to be seen how Des Buckingham guides the troops now. Lobera had set extremely high standards and Buckingham will have a task at his hands, trying to match up to Lobera's feat last season. 

He does have a capable squad at his disposal and the addition of players like Igor Angulo and Lalengmawia will help. Let us have a look at Mumbai City FC's squad. 

Mumbai City FC Squad

Goalkeepers:  Phurba Lachenpa, Mohammad Nawaz, Vikram Lakhbir Singh. 

Defenders: Rahul Bheke, Amey Ranawade, Mehtab Singh, Mohammad Rakip, Naocha Singh, Vignesh Dakshinamurthy, Mourtada Fall, Valpuia, Mandar Rao Dessai. 

Midfielders: Cassio Gabriel, Brad Inman, Ahmed Jahouh, Raynier Fernandes, Rowllin Borges, Naorem Tondomba Singh, Chanso Horam, Asif Khan, Lalengmawia. 

Forwards: Vikram Pratap Singh, Gurkirat Singh, Igor ANgulo, Bipin Singh, Ygor Catatau, Pranjal Bhumij. 

What are the strengths of Mumbai City FC? 

Mumbai City FC have one of the most balanced squads in ISL. It is evident that a lot of thought has been put in while assembling the players. They have not tinkered much with the core and have retained the likes of Mourtada Fall and Ahmed Jahouh. Yes, star players like Hugo Bomous and Adam Le Fondre have left the club but Mumbai City acted quick to bring in Igor Angulo who had an excellent goalscoring record at FC Goa last season. They have also signed Brazilian attacking midfielder Cassio Gabriel on loan from Serie B club Vila Nova to cover for Boumous' exit.  

The experienced Angulo is expected to spearhead the attack while Brazilian Ygor Catatau should be a good cover for the Spaniard. In Vikram Pratap Singh, the Islanders have one of the best upcoming talents in the country who is coming after a fruitful campaign in the AFC U-23 Asian Cup Qualifiers recently. The winger-cum-forward will be one of the players to look out for this season and if he can break in to the first team consistently, Mumbai City could have a gem on their hands. And on the other wing, they have Bipin Singh who was outstanding last year and scored the title-winning goal in the final. 

When you look past the attacking riches of Mumbia City, It could be said that they lacked a reliable Indian centre back last season. And Rahul Bheke's signing will help solve that problem, especially given the fact that number of foreigners in the starting XI has been brought down to four this season. 

Mumbai also have good squad depth in midfield with Rowllin Borges, Lalengamwia, Ahmed Jahouh and Brad Inman. 

What are the weaknesses of Mumbai City FC? 

One glaring issue in an otherwise strong squad is the goalkeeping department. The exit of the reliable Amrinder Singh is bound to hurt the Islanders. Amrinder was a stable presence between the sticks and his replacement Mohammed Nawaz is not exactly consistent.

While Nawaz is a good goalkeeper, his frame is not big comparatively and it could hurt the side during set-piece situations. Nawaz also has shown in the past that he is prone to mistakes. 

Mumbai City also have an unknown entity at their helm. Their new coach Des Buckingham was just 31 when he took over the reins at Wellington Phoenix and thus became the youngest A-League boss. However, he struggled in that stint with just five wins in 15 matches. 

But with the New Zealand U-20 and U-23 sides he has been extremely successful and has won OFC U-20 Championship (2018), Pacific Games (2019), and the OFC U-23 Championship (2019). He was even awarded the New Zealand Football Men's Coach of the Year: 2020 for his performances. 

Now it remains to be seen how he performs in the ISL. It is a pretty competitive league and since there are only 20 matches, a new manager hardly gets time to settle down. Lobera ensured that he got the best out of his players and that made all the difference. A certain Ranawade or Bipin Singh were novices until the Spaniard took them under his wings. So, Buckingham has huge shoes to fill in. 

Who are the key players of Mumbai City FC? 

The three key players of Mumbai City FC who might be the difference-makers are Mourtada Fall, Lalengmawia, and Ahmed Jahouh.

What are the fixtures of Mumbai City FC? 

Date Fixture Time Venue
November 22 Mumbai City FC vs FC Goa 19:30 PJN Stadium, Fatorda
November 27 Mumbai City FC vs Hyderabad FC 21:30 PJN Stadium, Fatorda
December 01 ATK Mohun Bagan vs Mumbai City FC  19:30 PJN Stadium, Fatorda
December 04 Bengaluru FC vs Mumbai City FC  21:30 Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
December 09 Mumbai City FC vs Jamshedpur FC  19:30 PJN Stadium, Fatorda
December 15 Mumbai City FC vs Chennaiyin FC 19:30 PJN Stadium, Fatorda
December 19 Mumbai City FC vs Kerala Blasters FC 19:30 PJN Stadium, Fatorda
December 27 NorthEast United FC vs Mumbai City FC 19:30 PJN Stadium, Fatorda
January 3 Odisha FC vs Mumbai City FC  19:30 Tilak Maidan Stadium
January 7 SC East Bengal vs Mumbai City FC  19:30 Tilak Maidan Stadium
(Originally posted by Soham Mukherjee)

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AFF Suzuki Cup: How to watch Malaysia at the AFF Championship 2020?

All you need to know to follow Harimau Malaya at the 2020 AFF Suzuki Cup.

The time for the honour of holding the bragging rights in Southeast Asia is almost upon us as the 2020 AFF Suzuki Cup gets ready for the big kick-off starting December 5.

After an additional year of holding onto the AFF Championship trophy due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Vietnam will be looking to defend their crown - and once again Malaysia will be seen at one of the main challengers.

Till date Singapore has hosted the competition four times, whether as a single host country or as one of the designated group hosts, and on every single one of those times Malaysia have managed to navigate their way out of the group stage to reach either the semi-finals or final. So historically, Singapore is a good hunting ground for Harimau Malaya.

With a full year of domestic football as part of preparations ahead of the AFF Suzuki Cup, Tan Cheng Hoe will have plenty of choices to pick his squad from and will have players who should theoretically be in good fitness levels and competitive mode.

The inclusion of Dion Cools into the national team have given some added mettle to the defence with the attacking side also bolstered by the rise of teenage talent Arif Aiman, who has had a tremendous season with Super League champions Johor Darul Ta'zim.

How to watch Harimau Malaya at the Suzuki Cup

Date Time* Fixture Stadium TV Channel/Streaming
6 Dec 2021 5:30 pm Cambodia vs Malaysia Bishan Stadium Astro/Astro Go
9 Dec 2021 5:30 pm Malaysia vs Laos Bishan Stadium Astro/Astro Go
12 Dec 2021 8:00 pm Vietnam vs Malaysia Bishan Stadium Astro/Astro Go
19 Dec 2021 8:00 pm Malaysia vs Indonesia Bishan Stadium Astro/Astro Go

*Exact kick-off times TBC

How to watch Harimau Malaya outside of Malaysia

Country Broadcaster
Singapore Mediacorp
Indonesia RCTI Indonesia, Champions TV, Vidio
Thailand BBTV Channel 7HD
Vietnam/Laos/Cambodia/Myanmar Next Media
Brunei Radio Television Brunei
Republic of Korea SBS
(Originally posted by Ooi Kin Fai)

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