Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Chris Anderson Interview..

Progressing from Burnley FC’s Centre of Excellence, Chris Anderson would be rightfully dubbed as a ‘promising youngster’. He has the talent, desire and determination that helps create a successful professional sportsman.

Chris, who was born in Burnley on October 2 1990, worked his way up the Turf Moor chain and gained a two-year apprenticeship at the age of 16.

A professional contract with his lifelong club, signed at the age of eighteen, was due to his ‘maturing’ and aggressive’ play out on the pitch and I predict that it won’t be too long before his name is on the lips of Claret fans everywhere.

On the way to Turf Moor I can admit to dreading the interview. Would this perhaps be another arrogant youngster, thirsty for fame and no passion for his club? I’m glad to say that I couldn’t have been more wrong.

When asked about the future, all that seemed to be on his mind was representing his home town. “Playing for Burnley would be the dream. My main aims are to work hard and hopefully break into the first team squad.”

Even as a youngster Chris stood out. “My parents said I had a clear knack for football. I was scouted at the age of 8 and was signed up a year later to be on the youth system at Turf Moor.”

He was interestingly given the name ‘Scorer’ at the age of ten when he hit five goals in one match. “There were two other Chris’ in the team and it was just a way of avoiding confusion. The name has stuck with me ever since, even though I don’t score as many goals now. Occasionally the lads change it to ‘Misser’ if I spoon a chance.”

Being basically the same age as Chris I was intrigued to find out how much being a professional footballer altered his life. “I still have the same bunch of mates I had at school and they all understand I can’t go out drinking with them as much anymore,” he said with a grin, “but that’s part of my life now”.

What is your daily routine? “I get up at 9am and head to Turf Moor for breakfast before heading to Gawthorpe for two hours training. Then it’s just back to Turf Moor for lunch. Easy life really.” Cue a cheeky smile. “I have an afternoon sleep, then it’s the computer or PS3 if I don’t have a game or a session at the gym with my mates.” What a life..

Being a professional footballer obviously has it’s perks. The glamour, the money, the pride. “I get paid for doing something I enjoy.“ However, things can turn nasty. Over-intrusive media can be a hassle and being noticed everywhere can’t be too pleasant. “I can still go out anywhere and lead a normal life as I’m not instantly recognisable by people who don’t actually know me. Eventually it could be a pain but I have to make the most of the opportunity I have now and try my utmost to keep my private life, private. Easier said than done,” he says again with the cheeky grin.

As mentioned before, Chris’ main aim is too pull on the claret and blue jersey in front of 20,000 Burnley fans at Turf Moor, but I had found a young man with his head firmly screwed on. “My short term aims are to keep injury free and impress in the reserves. The final aim would be to earn a further extension to my current contract.”

After the recent departure of Icelandic midfielder, Joey Guðjónsson, things are looking promising for Chris. A step down for Burnley to the Championship after a disappointing season in the top flight will be an ideal situation for the management staff to throw our man into the thick of the action.

Then I asked a question that really made him think. I’d heard that Sheffield United were interested in securing his services and wondered whether or not he would prefer first team football away from his beloved club, or if waiting for his chance at Burnley was a better option.

“Well, playing football regularly at a decent standard would be more satisfying than waiting in the wings. Hopefully I can do both a Burnley.”

And for some reason, I had utter belief in him.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Bank Holiday Weekend Review..

What a few days it has been..

Relegations and promotions are confirmed throughout football, United and Chelsea both win to set up a last day battle for the League title, Neil Robertson wins at the Crucible, Rory McIlroy gets back to form at Quail Hollow and the World 20twenty starts in the West Indies.

Scenes of mixed emotions were on show at Hillsborough as Sheffield Wednesday could only manage a 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace, inevitably sending them crashing out of the Championship to third-tier English football. The famous stadium was awash with tears come the full-time whistle, except of course in the away end. Palace, who had earlier on in the season been deducted 10 points for entering administration, had stayed up by the skin of their teeth. A draw on the last day was enough to keep the London side afloat in the Championship and the joy on their fans faces was held in stark contrast to the despair on the faces of the Wednesday fans.

Goals from Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard were enough to earn Chelsea a deserved three points against a lacklustre Liverpool side at Anfield. Chelsea attacked from the off, prompting mistakes from the Liverpool players, and Drogba put the Blues ahead after a brilliant through-ball from Steven Gerrard. Lampard made it two after the break, meaning Man United would have to win at the Stadium of Light to take the Premier League Title to a last-day decider. They did this courtesy of a 1-0 win, with Portugal's Luis Nani grabbing the goal. United will have to hope that Wigan can travel to Stamford Bridge and get a positive result joint with a home win over Stoke at Old Trafford.

Neil Robertson beat Graeme Dott 18-13 to become Australia's first World Snooker Champion. Robertson, who now rises to World Number 2, is the first player, from outside UK and Ireland, to win the championship at the crucible since Canadian Cliff Thorburn in 1980.

Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy won his first PGA Title at Quail Hollow after shooting a course record 62 round. The 20-year-old is the youngest winner on the tour since Tiger Woods in 1996, after beating second placed Phil Mickelson by four shots. "I'm delighted - I don't think I've ever played a better round in my life," McIlroy said afterwards.

And finally, in cricket, the World 20twenty competition has got off to an entertaining start at its St Lucia, Barbados and Guyana venues. England posted a mammoth score of 191-5 off 20 overs but the rain affected game was won by the West Indies who finished on 60-2 off 5.5 overs due to the Duckworth-Lewis method. This disappointing loss has brought the D/L Method into question as for its suitabilty in the shorter style of cricket.

I've got no problems with it in the 50-over form but I know it's made us very frustrated - it certainly has to be revised for this form of the game." said England captain, Paul Collingwood.