There's something reassuringly old-fashioned about Scott Parker as a footballer; the unflappable side-parting, the perma-grass-stained knees, the affection for bone-shuddering challenges.
Alex Ferguson routinely pours scorn over the idea of recruitment at this time of year, but he should know more than most that for every Jean-Alain Boumsong or Ricardo Rocha there's a Nemanja Vidić or a Patrice Evra out there waiting to be snaffled up.
The FA's decline and fall is what has characterised at least the last twenty years of its existence, the game compared to 1963, its centenary year, is almost unrecognisable. Not entirely for the worse of course, but not as much for the better as the FA would like to claim either.
Abramovich, like many others, has been fooled by the word of the week: 'philosophy.'
His all-round knowledge of the game and impartial (almost) analysis is without doubt the best available to UK viewers. He mixes his down-to-earth persona with a wide array of facts and analysis to a joyous affect and - compared to his peers - makes the break in live action all the more bearable.
From what seemed to be a crisis (according to the negative fans and media) - quite frankly doesn't seem like one anymore (if it was one in the first place.) If anything, the season is well and truly bright and hopefully 2013 sees us get something more than a top four finish.
While the bookies strongly favour Bayern, Arsenal have every chance of surprising the Germans - especially in Europe where the form book is thrown out of the window and against a notably similar side.
As Wenger's changed and Arsenal have become less competitive, I've warmed to him but also, unashamedly, become a critic of what he's done and what he's trying to do.
Celtic's season will now be considered a tremendous success, regardless of the trophy count in May. The youngest squad in the entire Champions League, has amassed ten points, and will be competing with Europe's elite in February.
Bebe never should have found himself at Man United, maybe not even a Premier League team let alone one of the world's biggest and best sides. You
Champions League success doesn't happen overnight.
You know that feeling when you've gone for a really good meal, but leave still feeling a bit hungry? That's the overwhelming feeling I've got from watching Arsenal so far this season. Don't get me wrong, it's not been a bad start...not exactly awe-inspiring, but still decent enough and with shinning beacons of promise (and don't we just love the words 'promise' and 'potential' at Arsenal!)
Even at cash strapped sides outside the elite group of clubs in Italy, Mancini won trophies and delivered success, achieving rewards for both Fiorentina and Lazio above and beyond what was expected at the time. Three Italian league titles on the bounce at Inter Milan followed, proving that he had the managerial capability to win under the pressure of Milanese expectation.
Celtic have won 2 of their last 34 European away games. That statistic will be echoed across every British newspaper on the eve of their critical Champions League clash with Helsingborgs IF. Such a statistic, without proper context, is incredibly misleading.
No European team has won the World Cup on South American soil. Argentina and Brazil tend to enjoy home advantage and Brazil will certainly hope to take advantage come 2014.
It was through my daily work with youth players around the world that I realised that many clubs - whatever their size - shared a common problem.