We see it year after year. Sides newly promoted to the Barclays Premier League have one goal - safety. Just to survive in their first year seems to be the holy grail and is at the forefront of most teams' minds. The quest to become an established Premier League side is a great one, fraught with danger, but there are several shining examples of how it can be done.
After seeing his side held to stalemates in their first two away fixtures, David Moyes was skeptical of Manchester United's trip to the BayArena to face Sami Hyypia's free-flowing Bayer Leverkusen, sitting second in the Bundesliga and unbeaten at home since March.
The amount of players that Hodgson has used in his England sides has been well documented and the number is now a staggering 53 since he took charge in May 2012. It is clear that like Moyes at United or Mourinho at Chelsea, Hodgson doesn't know what his best eleven is at the moment.
Unfortunately, it's never been easier for an English player to get called up to the national squad. With the large amount of cheap, foreign imports being snapped up by Premier League clubs, Roy Hodgson has an astoundingly decreasing pool of talent at his disposal to pick from...
Come 5 o'clock and Final Score on a Saturday I know where my sympathies lie and if MKD have lost, it feels like another small triumph, another dig in their ribs has been applied from all those 'real' fans who wish they weren't there. Childish maybe, but so is much of life as a football fan.
The standout surprise name in the squad announcement is Southampton forward Jay Rodriguez. Whilst the 24-year-old may well be a wildcard pick ahead of the World Cup, West Ham's Ravel Morrison can feel hard done by not to be included.
There have been many great clashes between these two nations, but here are the top 5...
I am no longer just a football fan. What Mike Ashley has successfully achieved is to make pseudo-accountants out of many Newcastle United fans. Instead of pointing to silverware as a barometer of progress and success.
When we see the ugly and offensive spectacle of Yaya Toure being targeted for racial abuse in the recent match in Russia, it goes to show that some parts of the world have yet to even get to the starting blocks.
The Champions League consists of the best domestic teams from all over Europe and to win the competition in its entirety is seen as the pinnacle of club football. Taking part in the European competition has many advantages to it and just qualifying for it is a huge attraction for potential players looking to move clubs.
Carrick is the only player at United who can play the ball in between the lines to likes of Wayne Rooney and van Persie. And when the 32-year-old gets marked out of the game, it becomes the duty of the defenders to get the ball out of defense but they simply resort to playing the ball out wide to the full-backs and wingers- who are the safest passing outlets.
This Sunday, Swansea travel to Cardiff for what promises to be one of the highlights of the Premier League season. And no, I'm not exaggerating. This will be the first time the two sides have ever clashed in top flight football, and neither will want to give up an inch to their arch-rivals and sworn enemy.
It has been reported that there are fewer English players playing in the Premier League today than ever before. In fact, English footballers account for just 32.26% of all minutes played in the Premier League and it is the lowest home-grown ratio across all major European leagues according to Opta statisticians.
Football is simple to learn, inexpensive to play, and loved across so many borders. As such, it can teach its fans (and its players) the values of mutual respect and tolerance. When your young heroes are so diverse, it is bound to stutter racism.
Joe Hart's miscalculation cost his City side dear on Sunday in their defeat to Chelsea, further raising questions about the England number one's decline in form of late. It seems like it has all gone downhill since that dramatic final day when Aguero's strike sealed the Premier League title for Manchester United's noisy neighbours back in 2012.
Ashley quite obviously thinks he can remove freedom of information from the equation and Newcastle United fans will take this lying down too. I won't focus on the act of banning newspapers too much. Quite clearly Ashley is feeling the pressure and is reacting in the only way he knows how to - badly.