Jeff Stelling Answers Your Questions...

The Soccer Saturday legend does not find Chris Kamara irritating, but we don't think the same can be said for Thommo. And he's backing Aguero for the Golden Boot...

Last Updated: 15/08/12 at 13:56 Post Comment

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Which summer signing are you most excited about? (Freddie Mills, London)
Obviously Steven Howard going to Hartlepool from Leicester. He's about 35 now and he's still a big boy - there's been no shrinkage so far. When it comes to the Premier League, I'm looking forward to seeing Eden Hazard and yes, I will be dropping the D in my pronunciation of his name (though maybe we'll let Merse be the judge)). His backheel in the Community Shield did not go to plan but there was enought there to suggest that he could be something special.


Whose name have you been practising to pronounce all summer? (Jim Broad, Havant)
There have been hardly any signings with names difficult to pronounce. hankfully there weren't many Poles signed after Euro 2012. One or two of the boys - Merse in particular - still struggle with Pavel Pogrebnyak. That one isn't easy.


Does Phil Thompson talk about anything other than Liverpool? (Steve Hart, Basingstoke)
What do you think? Well he does actually...he talks about Liverpool reserves, of course. What's funny is that he won't call the blue half by name. When we're doing the Super Six predictions, you can't get him to say 'Everton' will win - he'll predict the other team will lose instead. Thommo's a Liverpool legend, but he bores the pabnts off us all the time. What you can say about him is that he wears his heart on his sleeve...I just wish he'd wear his heart on his sleeve when I'm in a different room.


After your famous rant about the north-east and those of us down south who don't appreciate it, how do you feel about the FA and England being so London-centric? Especially after the years of touring England games around the country... (Will Donovan, London)
Those England games around the country were fantastic...they were brilliant. I saw England in a couple of different places. It was a great opportunity for football fans to go and see the England team on their doorstep. There could have been a real legacy there and it's a crying shame that we didn't build on that. I understand the financial implications and why games must be played at Wembley but there was a sense of expectation in places across the country when England came to town, much like we've seen during the olympics.


Will anyone excluding the Manchester clubs and Chelsea win the Premier League in the next decade? (Freddie Mills, London)
Good question. You have to hope so. Variety is the spice of life, isn't it? I would never say that Arsenal are never going to win the Premier League again. Can Newcastle build on the success of last season? Will Mike Ashley dig into his wallet? Probably not. You don't know what will happen. Will FFP have any impact? Probably not.

Liverpool? I would never discount Liverpool as long as everybody realises that this season does not matter. Brendan Rodgers needs time to build the team and build the club because there's a complete change in approach. Their opening fixtures could be a baptism of fire but the club needs the fans to remain patient and keep the faith. They can't have another Hodgson situation. Mind you, if they start looking for another legend to rescue them, we could end up losing Thommo.


Be honest, you're irritated by Kammy too, aren't you? (Jonjo Moriaty, Cork)
Unbelievable question, Jonjo. Of course I'm not iritated - he makes me laugh, smile, he brightens my Saturday. I'm so unirritated that I went to Kiev with him this summer. Thankfully I didn't have to share a room, because you want five minutes' peace and quiet from him.

The 'unbelievable' think is now principally for show, but then sometimes I think he can't help himself. But a while ago, crossing over to him after a great goal, I teeed him up by saying "well, Kammy, there's only one word to describe..."

And he said..."Fantastic."


Jeff...do you think that if Manchester City had failed to sign anyone in this transfer window, they would still have been able to retain the Premier League title? (hammy1984)
Yes. I think it's going to be another close-run thing but when you look at players like Hart, Kompany, Toure, Nasri, Silva, Tevez, Aguero, you'd have to think they've got enough to win it again. Even if you're PL champions, it doesn't make the bench any more comfortable. Maybe it's no bad thing if they don't sign many more players. Too many big names can sometimes mean big egos and big trouble.


From the Soccer Saturday panel, who was your favourite as a player? (Susan, Carlisle)
Sadly, Thompson and Charlie Nicholas played way before my time. Merse was a wonderful player but Le Tiss was different gravy. He never scored tap-ins, he never ran into the box...well, he never ran. It's wonderful for a club like Southampton that they had a player like him and he brought a lot of pleasure to a lot of people.


Who would you tip for Premier League top goalscorer? (Charlie Green)
Torres would be interesting if he could show the sort of form he showed at the Euros while you have to ask what Papiss Cisse could do in a full season. But I will go for Aguero - from the first minute of his first game to the last minute of the last game, he was full of energy and full of goals. You can tell he just wants to play - he certainly wouldn't be asking for a rest if he's gbeen back to Argentina.


Is it true you once tamed a stampede of wild rhinoceros with a well-timed rant on the cultural value of the Middlesbrough Transporter Bridge? (Greg, Newcastle)
That is ridiculous. There are no rhinoceroses in Middlesbrough...they were hippopotami. The Middlesbrough Transporter Bridge is of huge cultural value, it's one of only two in the woprld of its type that's fully operational. As a child I was scared witless of the thing as 40 years ago it always looked in danger of falling down.


Jeff Stelling was speaking on behalf of the free-to-play Sky Sports Soccer Saturday Super 6 game. Correctly predict six scores for this Saturday's fixtures for the chance to win the weekly £100,000 jackpot.

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till reckon Chelsea will go for Khedira as back up for Matic. I think it will turn out to be quite a Mourihno-y window: We'll see the squad players and youth in action pre-season, say things like well, we need not buy anybody and then the club will bid £60m for Pogba and send everybody on loan.

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ell, it wouldn't be a summer without Arsenal fans fretting over losing a key player, and United throwing their weight around and muscling in on transfer deals which are (apparently) near to completion. If we can't be entertained by the football on the pitch, let's enjoy the silly off-pitch soap opera of the transfer season. Hurrah!

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