Ed Aarons

Author's details

Name: Ed Aarons
Date registered: September 27, 2014
URL: http://www.theguardian.com/football/arsenal

Latest posts

  1. Ajax prodigy Kasper Dolberg: coached by Bergkamp, finishes like Van Basten — May 23, 2017
  2. Ander Herrera says Champions League place is at stake in Manchester derby — April 24, 2017
  3. Premier League must improve security after Dortmund attack, warns safety firm — April 13, 2017
  4. Borussia Dortmund’s Watzke: ‘The team is in shock. We must get through this’ — April 11, 2017
  5. Fans’ group praises scheme to cap Premier League away tickets at £20 — April 5, 2017

Author's posts listings

May 23

Ajax prodigy Kasper Dolberg: coached by Bergkamp, finishes like Van Basten

The 19-year-old Dane was deemed special before linking up with the Dutch legend at the club who face Manchester United in the Europa League final

Marc Overmars knew he was watching something special when he first laid eyes on Kasper Dolberg. Jens Steffensen, a former Denmark international who has been Dolberg’s agent for more than four years, recalls: “After one day of his trial, he said to me: ‘We want to sign him.’ We went inside to phone Kasper’s parents and discuss what to do – but it didn’t take long to decide because Ajax has such a long history of Danish players coming through the system; we chose them. It was a very good match. His personal trainer now is Dennis Bergkamp.”

Related: Ajax’s Justin Kluivert wants to be the best and not just famous for his dad

Related: Ajax return to the Cruyff ideals as Peter Bosz leads new generation

Related: Manchester United’s Daley Blind puts old ties behind him for Europa League final

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/may/23/focused-kasper-dolberg-bears-fruit-dennis-bergkamp-connection-ajax-europa-league

Apr 24

Ander Herrera says Champions League place is at stake in Manchester derby

• Midfielder says clash with Manchester City will be ‘the game of the season’
• Yaya Touré would prefer to ‘play without a referee’ after error at Wembley

Ander Herrera believes the Manchester derby on Thursday will be the biggest match of their season, with United and City separated by only a point in the Premier League table as they chase Champions League qualification for next season.

United go into the game at the Etihad Stadium on the back of three successive Premier League victories that have revived their hopes of finishing in the top four. Having starred in the 2-0 win against the leaders, Chelsea, last week, the Spain midfielder Herrera played a pivotal role in the 2-0 victory against Burnley at Turf Moor and he admitted the meeting with Pep Guardiola’s side could be make or break for both teams.

Related: Liverpool need flawless finish and a Manchester City favour, says Emre Can

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/apr/24/ander-herrera-champions-league-manchester-derby

Apr 13

Premier League must improve security after Dortmund attack, warns safety firm

• Elite Security Professionals provides security for players and managers
• Most clubs are ‘making plans after the events’, says director

The director of a leading security firm has warned a Premier League player could be the victim of a terrorist attack if clubs do not take the issue of safety more seriously in the wake of the bomb attack on Borussia Dortmund’s team bus.

Jesse Learoyd-Hill, who established Elite Security Professionals in 2014 and provides security for individual players and managers, wrote to almost every Premier League club at the start of last year to urging them to allow his company to conduct audits of their existing plans to ensure they were prepared in case of a terrorist incident, but received only one reply. He believes that is an example of the issue being largely ignored and has insisted clubs must reconsider their positions before it is too late.

Related: Borussia Dortmund’s ‘yellow wall’ stands tall in face of attack on team

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/apr/13/premier-league-terrorist-attack-dortmund-security

Apr 11

Borussia Dortmund’s Watzke: ‘The team is in shock. We must get through this’

• Dortmund chief says squad severely affected by explosions near team bus
• Monaco fans offered beds for the night by Dortmund residents

The Borussia Dortmund chief executive, Hans-Joachim Watzke, said his players were suffering from severe shock after explosions by the side of their team coach caused Tuesday night’s Champions League quarter-final first leg against Monaco to be postponed until tonight.

German police confirmed there were three separate explosions near the coach as it travelled to the Westfalenstadion, with the Spain defender Marc Bartra sustaining injuries from shards of glass and being taken to hospital. Images of the coach’s shattered windows appeared to show limited damage, although members of the playing staff were seen being ushered away from the scene by armed police. The match has been rearranged for Wednesday, kicking off at 5.45pm BST.

Related: Borussia Dortmund v Monaco postponed after explosions – live updates

Related: Borussia Dortmund’s team bus hit by explosions before Monaco tie

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/apr/11/borussia-dortmund-shock-team-bus-explosions

Apr 05

Fans’ group praises scheme to cap Premier League away tickets at £20

• Football Supporters’ Federation praises ‘refreshing exception’
• £20 cap for Premier League away tickets between 15 and 23 April

The chief executive of the Football Supporters’ Federation has praised a scheme to cap the cost of Premier League away tickets to £20 for one round of fixtures this month and called on other sponsors to follow suit.

As part of the Twenty’s Plenty campaign instigated by the FSF in 2013, Virgin Media will reimburse the costs of supporters’ tickets above £20 for a single away fixture at all Premier League clubs, with the majority of matches taking place between 15‑23 April. Last year, clubs voted unanimously to introduce a £30 cap for all away tickets in the Premier League, meaning the telecom company will effectively subsidise £10 on every ticket.

Related: Sunderland paid Margaret Byrne £750,000 in confidentiality deal

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/apr/05/fans-group-premier-league-away-tickets

Apr 05

Why Brentford ditched their academy in favour of developing Premier League outcasts | Ed Aarons

Championship club’s decision to focus on a reserve side playing top opposition in friendlies is paying dividends under head of football operations Robert Rowan

It is a sunny Tuesday morning in west London and Robert Rowan, Brentford’s head of football operations, is watching Kevin O’Connor putting his B team squad through their paces. “Twenty-five press-ups for the strikers and then we go again,” commands the coach to his group of young players gathered from six European countries.

Almost a year on since the Championship club took the decision to close their youth academy as a response to the restrictions imposed on them by the Premier League’s Elite Player Performance Plan, this is the reality for Brentford. It is a radical three-year strategy designed to establish a way of developing players with the aim of “creating the most effective pathway into the first team of all English clubs”. It has already seen O’Connor’s hotchpotch team of former youth team players and recruits play Manchester United, Liverpool and Bayern Munich sides in friendlies this season, with four players having gone on to make their debut for Dean Smith’s first team.

Related: Newcastle edge closer to promotion but Rotherham are relegated to League One

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/apr/05/brentford-ditched-their-academy-premier-league-outcasts

Mar 19

Sam Allardyce looks to Crystal Palace chairman to keep Wilfried Zaha

• Winger has not agreed new contract, with Tottenham believed interested
• Manager describes his Ivory Coast winger as ‘genius’

Sam Allardyce is hopeful the Crystal Palace chairman, Steve Parish, can persuade Wilfried Zaha to stay at Selhurst Park next season after his “genius” winger inspired a third successive victory for the former England manager.

An own goal from the Watford captain, Troy Deeney, put the seal on another resilient defensive display led by the resurgent Mamadou Sakho as Palace eased their relegation worries before a treacherous run-in that includes matches against all of the top six. But, while they won without mustering a single shot on target in a game that was desperately low on quality, Zaha was by far the most potent attacking force on show.

Related: Troy Deeney’s own goal against Watford gives Crystal Palace rare home win

Related: Sam Allardyce leaves ‘dream’ England manager job after one game in charge

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/mar/19/sam-allardyce-crystal-palace-chairman-keep-wilfried-zaha

Mar 17

Managers suffer time deprivation in Championship that never sleeps | Ed Aarons

Derby County’s quickfire turnover symptomatic of the alarming hire-and-fire culture in the division that has seen 14 managers leave their posts this season

Gary Rowett must know he does not have long. Around 18 weeks, if the Derby chairman’s form is anything to go by. Just ask Paul Clement. Or Nigel Pearson.

Derby are in their ninth consecutive season in the Championship and their appointment of Rowett to replace Steve McClaren this week means that when they face their bitter rivals Nottingham Forest on Saturday the fixture will feature two new faces in the dugouts for a fifth time in succession – a run that stretches back to January 2015. On that occasion, McClaren – then in his first spell at Pride Park – lost out to Stuart Pearce 2-1 before gaining revenge almost two years later in his second spell with a 3-0 win over Philippe Montanier.

Related: Mark Warburton admits Nottingham Forest’s scorching hot seat is a risky job | Nick Miller

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/blog/2017/mar/17/managers-time-deprivation-championship-derby-county

Mar 17

Champions League quarter-finals: Leicester City to face Atlético Madrid

• Holders Real Madrid drawn against Bayern Munich
• Borussia Dortmund v Monaco; Juventus v Barcelona

Leicester will face 2016 runners up Atlético Madrid in the quarter-finals of the Champions League, with Bayern Munich facing holders Real Madrid.

The Premier League champions, who beat Sevilla in the last-16 thanks to a 2-0 victory in the second leg at the King Power Stadium, have twice been drawn against Atlético in the first round of the 1961 Cup Winners Cup in 1961 and the Uefa Cup first round in 1997, losing both ties. Leicester will continue their remarkable run by travelling to the Spanish capital for the first leg in the week beginning 10 April, with the second match taking place the following week.

The last time Atlético Madrid won in England (vs. Leicester, 1997) Ian Marshall ate some paella: pic.twitter.com/WfJTbTnbKv

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/mar/17/champions-league-quarter-final-leicester

Feb 26

Leicester covet reluctant Guus Hiddink to replace Claudio Ranieri

• Return of former manager Nigel Pearson thought to be unlikely
• Caretaker Craig Shakespeare could get job on permanent basis

Leicester City are hopeful of persuading Guus Hiddink to take over from Claudio Ranieri until the end of the season, although the Dutchman is understood to be reluctant to take on the role at such short notice, meaning the Premier League champions could turn to caretaker manager Craig Shakespeare on a permanent basis.

Representatives of Hiddink, who has been out of work since leaving his second spell as Chelsea’s interim manager last May, are believed to have been approached over the weekend by Leicester officials to gauge whether the 70-year-old would be interested in succeeding Ranieri after the Italian was sacked last week. However, having indicated several times during his second spell at Stamford Bridge that he was intent on retiring after nearly three decades in management, it remains to be seen whether he can be persuaded to change his mind.

Related: Claudio Ranieri thanks Guus Hiddink and Chelsea in emotional phone call

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/feb/26/leicester-covet-reluctant-guus-hiddink-replace-claudio-ranieri

Feb 19

Arsenal’s Arsène Wenger worried about Sutton’s artificial pitch for FA Cup

• ‘Ideally we would like to play on a normal pitch’ in fifth-round tie
• Arsenal have practised on 3G pitch before visit to non-league side

Arsène Wenger has admitted he is concerned about facing Sutton United on the National League side’s artificial 3G pitch and warned his Arsenal players not to take the FA Cup fifth-round tie lightly in a week in which he has come out fighting over increased scrutiny of his position.

Arsenal, 12 times the FA Cup winners, travel to Gander Green Lane on Monday evening in their first match since the devastating 5-1 defeat by Bayern Munich in the first leg of their last-16 Champions League tie to face Sutton, who have beaten Colchester United, Cheltenham Town, AFC Wimbledon and Leeds United to reach this stage of the competition.

Related: Arsenal’s ‘Wenger out’ crowd should look at Manchester United’s labours | Daniel Taylor

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/feb/19/arsenal-arsene-wenger-sutton-artificial-pitch-fa-cup

Feb 17

Sutton deny banning fans who opposed FA Cup sponsorship from the Sun

• Supporters claim thread on unofficial forum was removed at request of club
• Sutton face Arsenal on Monday night in fifth round tie

Sutton United have denied accusations they have censored a group of supporters from a club forum after they voiced their opposition to The Sun’s sponsorship ahead of the National League side’s FA Cup fifth round tie against Arsenal on Monday night.

Earlier this week, Sutton announced a deal with the Sun that is understood to be worth a considerable five-figure payment that will see Sun Bets replace their usual sponsor, Green Go Waste, for the historic match against Arsene Wenger’s side at Gander Green Lane. That was greeted with scepticism by some supporters after the agreement came within days of Liverpool’s decision to ban the newspaper from their Anfield stadium and Melwood training ground over its notorious coverage of the Hillsborough disaster, in which 96 Liverpool supporters were unlawfully killed.

Related: FA Cup fifth round: 10 things to look out for this weekend | Daniel Harris and Barry Glendenning

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2017/feb/17/sutton-united-fa-cup-sponsorship-the-sun

Nov 27

Nasser Hussain calls for increased safety after Phillip Hughes’ death

• Former England captain wants improved helmets
• ‘This will send shock waves through every cricketer’
• Mike Selvey: a dangerous kind of complacency
• Phillip Hughes dies two days after being hit by ball
• Australia captain Michael Clarke leads emotional tributes

The former England captain Nasser Hussain has called for cricket helmet manufacturers to consider new methods of protecting players after the death of the Australia batsman Phillip Hughes.

Hughes, who was 25, died on Thursday, two days after being struck by a bouncer while batting for South Australia against New South Wales at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2014/nov/27/phillip-hughes-death-safety-nasser-hussain