Football’s April Fools’ Day round-up

Rickie Lambert’s ‘New Zealand Ambition’

Rickie Lambert spoke of his ambition to represent New Zealand in international football, after learning that he could qualify to play for the All Whites through his grandfather — however, the new was later revealed to be part of an April Fools’ Day joke by Southampton Football Club!

For the full story, click here: http://sfcne.ws/126caXK

Football Manager 1888

We’re delighted to reveal that Football Manager is teaming with The Football League to release a brand new game to celebrate their 125-year anniversary…


New features include: no substitutions, no offside rule, losing players to the army and many more. For all the details, visit www.footballmanager.com/1888. So good, it’s unreal.

Football Manager 1888, April Fools' Day 2013
(Image: Football Manager/Facebook)
Football Manager 1888 screenshot 1, Football Manager April Fools' Day
(Image: Football Manager)
Football Manager 1888 screenshot 2, Football Manager April Fools' Day
(Image: Football Manager)
Football Manager 1888 screenshot 3, Football Manager April Fools' Day
(Image: Football Manager)
Football Manager 1888 screenshot 4, Football Manager April Fools' Day
(Image: Football Manager)

Extendible goal posts

From The Sun:

BORING periods of extra-time will be banished from next season’s Capital One Cup.

SunSport can reveal The Football League has approved a controversial plan proposed by sponsors Capital One, aimed at increasing entertainment.

From next season all Capital One Cup matches will feature extendible goals, which increase in size when teams are level after 90 minutes.

It is hoped the move will encourage more attacking football during extra time, when players are affected by fatigue and the threat of an impending penalty shoot-out.

Roman Abramovich to manage Chelsea next season

With the help of investigative football journalist http://twitter.com/paolofril talkSPORT have pulled off one this season’s biggest scoops. What do you make of the latest bizarre twist in Chelsea’s search for a new manager?

Fake fight on Grandstand

This BBC Sport video actually came out a while ago, on April Fools’ Day 1989, but it came back to the fore again yesterday.

BBC Sport’s Grandstand team play an April Fools’ prank when the staff stage a fake fight behind presenter Des Lynam during a broadcast.

The original broadcast took place on 1 April, 1989.

Match of the Day 3 – April Fools’ Fact or Fiction

Robbie Savage and West Brom’s Steven Reid discuss funny April Fools tales with host Colin Murray before deciding whether or not they are fact or fiction in this week’s Match of the Day 3.

Rafael Benitez to be named permanent Chelsea manager

From FamousCFC.com:

Chelsea Football Club are on the verge of naming Rafael Benitez as permanent manager in a move that is likely to unify Chelsea fans after a really special few months at the club.

Despite his unpopularity with fans initially he has proved the doubters that thought he was useless wrong with some stunning results.

It is believed results have meant that the board are now convinced the Spaniard is right for the job.

A club spokesman told us off the record:

“We knew appointing Rafa would be controversial but he has done so much to win over the fans with the great results, the supporters who resisted his arrival have a lot of egg on their face now.

The club has rewarded this by giving him a six year contract to show that we know he is the past, present and future of Chelsea Football Club”

Even for the most ardent detractor of Rafa it is hard to argue with the club.

Rafa has shown his talents with victories against Brentford, West Ham and Stoke. Which have eclipsed defeats against high flying Southampton, Newcastle and Queens Park Rangers.

Then there is Fernando Torres, who has struggled at Chelsea under other managers, cometh the hour cometh Rafa Benitez, he has transformed Torres into the striker we remember from his days at Liverpool .

It has been a real pleasure to watch a confident Fernando Torres scoring freely and topping the Premier League scoring charts.

Welcome to Rafa Benitez the best interim manager we have ever had!

Wellington Phoenix appoint club owner Gareth Morgan as Technical Director

From TVNZ:

A day after confirming their status as the worst side in the A-League with a wooden spoon-winning performance against Melbourne Victory, it’s a relief to see the Wellington Phoenix have not lost their sense of humour.

Phoenix representatives today forwarded a creative press release, apparently celebrating the end of their dismal season and the arrival of April 1st, explaining the appointment of controversial club owner Gareth Morgan to the position of technical director.

“Morgan brings a wealth of football knowledge with him, having two years’ experience as an owner of the Football Club,” the release explained.

“Phoenix General Manager David Dome says the appointment of Morgan is an important addition to the Phoenix management team and signals that the Club is committed to utilising the range of skills possessed by those involved in the Club.

When contacted this morning, a club spokesman could not confirm the validity of the new appointment, explaining some further reaction was due to come after midday.

The release went on to quote Dome further, describing the feline-opposing Morgan as being, “very passionate about the Wellington Phoenix.”

“We are extremely pleased that he has agreed to widen his involvement with the Club and take on these additional responsibilities on top of his already busy role as a Club owner.”

“After selling Gareth Morgan Investments, I am excited to get stuck into a new project,” he said.

“I have been heavily involved with the Phoenix this season, travelling with the team and looking at sophisticated fitness and video analysis, along with being very involved with the Football School of Excellence this season.

“This opportunity is very exciting and I’m looking forward to shaping the team with the new Head Coach. So watch out Tony Popovic and Ange Postecoglou”.

Android linesman idea

From HITC Sport:

In what you could call an EXCLUSIVE (well you wont read it anywhere else) FIFA have been pitched the idea of ‘android linesman’ by a Belgian company. It is almost to good an idea to believe.

Are you tired of linesman getting their decisions wrong? Well I think we all are. Football is great and many people understand that one of the reasons it is such a fantastic sport is the potential for human error to get in the way.

However recently some decisions have been worst then others and although we are going someway to combat the old foe of goal-line decisions with some innovative steps coming into play for the future there is still one other great plague.

Offside decisions.

As footballers get faster more is asked of the linesman in big games to keep up with the play and get their decisions right; and they are struggling.

But now it seems that things are about to change; if you can afford it that is.

A company in Belgium believe they have developed the technology to eradicate nearly ALL mistakes from the officiating of games.

Ols-Roid Palfay is one of the world”s largest manufacturers and inventors of androids. Human-like robotic engineering and the type of technology that does everything from build cars, wrap Mars bars or harvest crops; now they want to eradicate a problem from football.

Eduard de Dene, president of the company behind the idea, says the technology is already in place to replace the traditional assistant referees; with robots.

Using infra-red chips inserted into each players boot the droids can scan the entire field whilst moving along a track on each side of the pitch. Using the data they can create a full map of the playing field and distinguish between different players. Not only this; but they can travel along the track at a speed of up to 25 miles an hour so will never be out of line with the last defender; with whom they are programmed to be in sync with.

De Dene even suggested they could have “little offside flags attached to them” which would then “pop up” for anyone worried about nostalgia being lost.

Graham Plimpton of the Referees Association for England felt it was a grave mistake. Claiming that it would “take away the romance of the game” and be “too expensive to install on a widespread scale”.

It seems like something from science-fiction but with the technology in place it seems we may very soon have our lines being run by robotic androids like R2-D2 from Star Wars.

What do you think? Foolish idea or more genius imported from Belgium?