West Country Eagle

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About West Country Eagle

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    Interests? I've had a few. But then again, too many to mention.
  1. The biggest downside of this is how much we're going to hear from Farage in the coming days and months. THANKS AMERICA!
  2. He's up in front of the media again in London shortly. It will be interesting to see what he says, how he responds to questioning etc. Hopefully he will be a bit more lucid and the media can move on/have something else to talk about. It's interesting what the players said after the match about deviating from his instructions. As much as many players say that he inspires them, I bet he's capable of scaring them sh*tless as well - a bit like a certain Sir Alex.
  3. It's a fair point, I guess. I personally would rather he was a little more open and verbose with the media, and as a journalist there's nothing more annoying than grumpy interviewees stone-walling your perfectly valid questions. Even so, I don't think his responses should have created such a furore. Unprofessional: yes. Not ideal: yes. Sacking offence: no. The one thing that would guarantee RL in this country more column inches/a PR boost would be for England to get their fingers out and win a tournament. He's here to mastermind that. Whether he's up to it or not - so many others have tried and failed, the quality gap is still there etc etc - is another thing, but he should at least be given a chance to try not just in this Four Nations, but the WC too.
  4. I went to something similar in London with Phil C (once of this Parish) many years ago, presumably while WB was Australia coach. I found him engaging, occasionally quite funny, thoughtful and actually rather inspiring. He gave out copies of his book, Don't Die With The Music In You, at the end. There's plenty of wisdom in that, too.
  5. They will, though, so Brexiters are getting their knickers in a twist over nothing. The decision does, however, allow for some debate about what sort of 'Brexit' we want - clearly a majority of voters put a cross in the box marked 'leave', but the leave campaign couldn't agree on what sort of relationship, if any, the UK would have with the EU afterwards. Isn't it about time we had that discussion in parliament? I mean, it's rather important. Naturally, we'll have to take what we're offered by Europe (I.E a rubbish deal) as they have the whip hand. Even so, it would be good for Saint Theresa/Mother Theresa/Mad May to give parliament a vague idea on what it is she/her government wants. At present, all we're getting is foaming at the mouth right wing populism - certainly not conservatism in the traditional sense - with nothing of substance beneath it.
  6. One sided in the first half, with the East lads capitalising on quite a few West errors (dropped ball, missed tackles) and indiscipline. The West guys played much better in the second half and it was a very even game. Plenty to build on in coming matches. The East fully deserved their victory, all in all - looks like a decent side in the making.
  7. I tend to agree with this. England were undoubtedly poor in the opening 20 but won in the end fairly comfortably. They'll have to step it up another few levels against Australia, but that would have been the case regardless of the performance against Scotland. I don't get the witch hunt against Wayne Bennett. Harris and co complaining about his media style is ridiculous - he's always been this way with journalists/in front of the cameras, but that has no effect on his ability to coach (or otherwise). If he isn't willing to play the media game, then stick one of the others in front of the camera (E.G Betts, Sculthorpe etc etc). My experience of Bennett behind the scenes/away from the cameras is that he doesn't say a lot but is fairly affable and can be quite funny. Besides, his job is to COACH, and his track record suggests that if he is given time he will get it right. He's only had 3 games with the team and has yet to get them playing exactly how he wants. That may take time, but we should stick with him for the World Cup regardless of what happens on Sunday. I bet he wishes he could call on a half back as good as Thurston or Johnson, though. That would make such a difference to England (as would a centre or two as good as Inglis)
  8. He's stuck in the past. It's all about the M4 corridor now
  9. Paul Nuttall from the UKIPs. Get back in the sea you finned [inserted sweary word] I saw that Stewart Lee on a bus once. He looked fat and miserable.
  10. That's the spirit! Have to say I've been gutted too many times to be genuinely confident or properly optimistic. I'm happy to cling on to blind faith for a few more weeks though
  11. Not at present, certainly. Quite a few West of England clubs, including the Sonics, would like to play at (or in our case, return to) CLS level at some point, it's just that nobody is quite strong enough at present. Before the season we ended up having to withdraw, we made the point that there is currently not a strong enough player base in the region to realistically sustain more than one CLS level side. As the All Golds have a team in it - featuring numerous players from different parts of the region, and between 5 and 10 from Bristol alone - it effectively means nobody else has the playing resources to compete. Money is also an issue for many clubs in the region (as elsewhere). There's a willingness to support CLS, just not the resources to compete. If you're going to struggle all season, why enter the competition? It would be better to enter the league when you're strong enough, with adequate playing and financial resources.
  12. The Eagles have always struggled, and only good management has kept them afloat/moving forwards in the past. I have some sympathy for the "if they weren't full time they'd struggle" view, but surely it would have been more wise to build towards that by sorting the stadium issue out first? If you have a stadium/permanent base with which you can increase commercial revenue streams (better corporate hospitality facilities, potential bar and catering revenues etc), which was part of the original stadium plan, then that allows you to build towards becoming full time. Going full time, as they did, was a huge gamble. It had to work. They had been in and around the top of the Championship with a part-time side for a few years. Yes, others had moved on/more money was being spent, but 'keeping up with the Joneses' when you do not have the financial resources to do so is a recipe for disaster, as this has proved. Mark Aston is lucky that he is a club legend - any other coach would have been sacked after spending loads of cash on contracts and seeing an expensively assembled squad struggle like this. Instead of moaning about Sheffield not wanting the Eagles, maybe he should take a longer look at his role in all of this. Mark will always be an Eagles legend, and he has done so much for the club, but that should not make him immune from criticism when he gets things wrong. If the Eagles are to survive in some shape or form moving forwards, it's very likely to be in the division below, following administration/a points deduction (unless things progress differently and an investor is found and signs up within a very short time frame). In that case, would they be happy just to exist like, say, the All Golds, Oxford etc? Without their own stadium/a permanent base, they will never move forward. Having watched and followed the Eagles for decades, I don't feel particularly confident for the future.
  13. The Eagles problems are complex, but it really comes down to mismanagement in my opinion. As Tim pointed out above, their financial problems stemmed from the decision taken - as I understand it, by a wealthy investor, now longer involved - to go full-time. This was always a dangerous game to be playing for a club of Sheffield's size, and with their traditionally small fan base. It's effectively gambling on getting one of the top few slots in the division, in order to chase the (relative) riches that Super League offers. When an expensively - too expensively, in my opinion - squad didn't perform, this creates major revenue issues. It's particularly annoying since the Eagles have previously been pretty well run - even in the Gary Hetherington days (it went more pear-shaped the last time a moneybags investor came in, Mr Sanderson Electronics himself Paul Thompson). The stadium is another issue entirely. Tons of hard work has been going on behind the scenes for years, with various investors/potential backers coming and going. It's not true to say that Sheffield City Council is not willing to help - they have been pretty supportive generally, all things considered - but they're not able to speed up the processes involved in order to suit the Eagles admittedly tight deadlines. Either that or they've just run out of patience with the Eagles. Who knows. Either way, it's depressing as a supporter of nearly 30 years to see them in this state. I can't say I'm surprised, though, sadly.
  14. I can't say I've ever met many hard-line pro-EU types. Sure, I know and have met plenty of people who would vote to stay in, but very few think the EU is perfect, just that there are more benefits of membership than negatives. Many also think, rightly or wrongly, that exiting the EU would be economic suicide. Others are just naturally more woolly and liberal and see the benefits of greater cooperation between nations. I do fear that the number of hardline eurosceptics is growing, and that there are far more media outlets "pro brexit" than those who wish to remain. There are many floating voters who either don't care, or aren't bothered enough to vote - which could of course hand victory to the "out" camp. Whatever happens, everyone needs to vote if they can - it's a huge decision and we should all cast our vote, whichever side we support. (For the record, I would vote to remain, though I'm not 'hardline' enough to get into frothing at the mouth debates about it with UKIP types, old school tories, unrealistic socialists who think that by voting out we'll suddenly be able to increase pay and workers rights etc)
  15. Yes. I thought McGilray had a good game, but his positioning may have been a little off. Certainly, the problems stemmed from NZ throwing the ball wide quickly, and our defence not getting back across in time/spotting the danger. How the Kiwis fluffed so many try-scoring opportunities I'll never now. On such fine margins are test series won and lost. I think it's credit to England that they ground out the win, despite looking pedestrian for the most part. Our forwards can make ground, but we just seemed lacking ideas. For example, no inside runners. not much running in pairs. In fact we didn't seem to run onto the ball that much at all. We took the few try-scoring opportunities we had: New Zealand didn't. We have away some silly penalties as well, but for the most part were good enough defensively. At crunch moments, the Kiwis weren't. Fine margins, but delighted we came out on top - on too many occasions in the recent past against NZ and Australia, it's been a different story.