Football Daily | Eight European powerhouses prepare to collide

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Almost anything can be classified as nostalgia these days. If you squint hard enough down, even the most mundane or objectionable things can be rebranded in sepia-tinted. Why does Football Daily yearn for Andy Townsend on co-commentary (when Ally McCoist is such an obvious upgrade) and still get a kick out of seeing the Continental Tyres logo every time it walks past a parked car? Perhaps because football, and life, was better back in the day: free-to-air Big Cup, referees making honest and understandable mistakes in a fast-paced game, Darren Bent scoring against Liverpool via a Liverpool-branded beach ball. None of these things would be possible in 2024. And football now is poorer for it.

Perhaps there was a time, pre-Premier League, when football for so many was ‘the greatest thing in the world’ (yesterday’s Football Daily). These days at the elite level it falls well short as we witness obscene wage levels, VAR, increasing foreign ownership creating strife for many supporters, TV ruling all and ignoring supporters, plus more unnecessary kits. Why? Simply to gouge even more money from fans. When, some weeks, you can witness an obscenely-paid player not caring too much about their performance on the pitch, you can probably say it is no longer the greatest thing in the world” – Russell Pulford.’

Re: yesterday’s Memory Lane photo of Jimmy Nail and Alan Shearer (full email edition). See yesterday’s cryptic crossword on Big Website, and 4 down: ‘Oz actor’s prepared for punch (4,3)’ = Nail set. Spooky, huh?” – Michael Bland.

This is an extract from our daily football email … Football Daily. To get the full version, just visit this page and follow the instructions.

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