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Message Board - Football: Current State of Prem Football Pitches

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bob smith
Posted 28 Jan 2008
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Posts: 160

You all hate us and we don't care!

Heard Ray Houghton slagging off the state of Premiership and Championship football pitches on Talk Sport yesterday.

He basicaly said that they were a disgrace compared to similar pitches in the rest of Europe.

I'm not much of a football fan so couldn't comment but what do you guys think?

Is he right and if so what's the problem? Is it to do with a lack of funds, less use, different climate?

Would be interested to hear your thoughts.

Bob
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Dave
Posted 28 Jan 2008
Avatar: Belgian Tervuren
Posts: 747

Bob,

A few pitches are poor and many are excellent. The wet winter that we've had, has been a bit too much for some of the grounds to cope with and with no regrowth it's nigh impossible to restore the pitches now until the spring-although some clubs may choose to returf now.

The majority of the pitches that I saw this weekend looked magnificent for the time of year. How many pitches of old can you remember that still had some grass at the end of January?

We don't share the climate of our southern european neighbours and have a very demanding schedule of play, without a mid season break (which does happen in other northern european countries).

The trouble with commentators such as Ray Houghton is that they sound off without asking any questions to the relevant people.
Many clubs will have had 8-9 games to contend with through December/January and with over 100 rivers on flood alert it has been a difficult time for the Groundstaff to get games on. Often at the risk of losing the surface.

Most Groundsmen have a good understanding of what they would like to have in terms of a pitch surface and construction-few will be given the funding to have a state of the art pitch installed and the money for the subsequent maintenance. You only have to look at Arsenal, Tottenham, Aston Villa to name a few clubs where the pitch has been prioritised sufficiently to maintain a good grass coverage throughout the ten months of play.

Rest assured that there have been many committed people out there striving to provide surfaces fit for the game during this wet winter.

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leeboy
Posted 28 Jan 2008
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Andy Gray has taken a distinct liking to our pitch, he always seems to be giving it a mention, though not in a positive way, still waiting for him to respond to an email I sent him 3 weeks ago when he ripped it apart after 4 games in 2 weeks but nothing yet.....
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EHU Mission Control
Posted 28 Jan 2008
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Posts: 291

The future is bright, the future is EHU !

Why not get these pundits to work with the clubs (role thier sleves up and do a real job for once), and then they would see the amount of work and pressure these professionals are under.

I went to city recently Lee boy only comment was behind the goals, any particular reason lee, the rest of the pitch looks fine and looked to play well KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK Leeboy and his team !

Any one answer the reason for the line of no grass down the middle of the pitch at wigan

did the covers leak ?

Andy Gray, who he when he is at home? does not even now the rules of the game after all these years, bur draws a good line with is marker pen on the screen, or is this a new form of art he is doing?

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GaryA
Posted 28 Jan 2008
Fylde rfc
Posts: 126

Be Just and Fear Not

Sorry to be a pedant but there are no "rules of the game" - there are laws though !
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EHU Mission Control
Posted 28 Jan 2008
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Posts: 291

The future is bright, the future is EHU !

Did to know that the game was under the control of politicians and barristers have these laws been passed by those in westminster ??????????????

just a thought !
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leeboy
Posted 28 Jan 2008
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I offered Andy Gray the chance to come down on the pitch and have a look to see that what he was saying was absolute ********, its seems that these days once you lose some grass cover your pitch is suddenly bobbly for some reason.

Behind the goals was where the dryject machines runs ended, in turn leaving a lot more sand in these areas. We tend to struggle anyway at the best of times at each end as we cant turn on the track there, it is also where we do the turning for aeration/spraying etc, unlike when we cut widthways and the advertising boards are set back from the kerb stones, dreading next season when we get the LED boards, will have to improve our machine control skills....!
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Charles Johnson
Posted 28 Jan 2008
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Posts: 289

We have had some really poor weather to contend with, and in that context most pitches have done well but are reflecting that it is mid-winter.

I wonder if fewer clubs have re-turfed ?
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chucky
Posted 28 Jan 2008
tivi.jpg
Posts: 366

No wonder I'm Mr Grumpy!

OMG peeps slagging off Andy Gray. That's not right! He was my childhood hero! I modelled myself on him when I was 15 years old.

Now at 43 years old I am more like him at 17 stone! I could still make it as a rugby player! No good with a pen though!
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taffy
Posted 28 Jan 2008
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Posts: 96

DO these pundits and other media not understand that we had nearly a months solid rain!!!! how are we ment to keep preparing top class surfaces with soo many fixtures and with the weather being soo bad!! lets hope the dry spell keeps up!! keep up the good work lads!!
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RedexR
Posted 28 Jan 2008 Last edited: 28 Jan 2008
Avatar: Collie
Posts: 998

Bordering on the insane

I believe it was Wigans pitch that got it both barrels from Talksport today , I think there was an issue with covers down the centre of the pitch and uneven grass growth.
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LittleDave
Posted 28 Jan 2008
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Posts: 124

Plus they seemed to forget that the summer wasn't exactly ideal conditions for the pitches to recover from LAST season!
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The hog
Posted 29 Jan 2008
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Posts: 9

mud mud glorious mud

thing is when you see some of the old films of these pundits in there playing days. it was mostly on mud. and only two season ago the Chelsea pitch was just sand.So what have they got to moan about.
rant over
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grassyarse
Posted 30 Jan 2008
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Posts: 5

Pundits like Gray,Motson etc etc should be reminded of the **** wet summer we've had to endure ? All the money SKY put into certain divisions you would have thought they would be able to do something about the weather ha ha!Football the last time i looked was a winter game,just because a couple have looked a little ropey the EXPERTS have jumped in knocking the surfaces.Andy Gray however is firstly a Groundsman(pitch is a wee bit bobbly) then he adorns the Physio mantle(ligaments,cruciates and metar-blaaaaaaaaaaaaaah-sals) All groundsmen should give themselves a big pat on their own backs(nobody else will) Keep up the good work boys and girls.p.s.Glad my surface doesn't resemble Mr Grays barnet! DUZ IT RAIN SOUTH OF WATFORD?
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finchy
Posted 30 Jan 2008
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Posts: 57

Good Morning,

This also happens in Australia. Negative comments are made by both the print and television media in regards to the pitch, yet they do not bother to ask anyone prior to making these comments.

At the SFS we are under an obligation that we are not allowed to speak to the media about the pitch however a representative from the Trust (Media Manager) is available at all times with the correct information.

We have an award in Aust with some of the major stadiums. We call it the Mike Gibson Trophy. Mike Gibson is a sports presenter on Fox and his show is called "The Back Page". We are told by our management to ensure that the pitch does not make the back page of the newspapers for the wrong reasons.

I am the current holder of the Trophy.

Regards

Finchy
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Speckledhen
Posted 30 Jan 2008
Canal boat holiday pics 025
Posts: 1914

ste

Phil Thompson has just been talking about Desso at Anfield - part plastic, part grass. he was thanked for the horticulture from a glassy eyed presenter.
this was a response to Frgie demanding a £250 000 new pitch, he wont get desso for that!

regards

Steve
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Greenfingers
Posted 31 Jan 2008
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Posts: 193

I had read in the press about Fergie ranting on about the state of the Old Trafford pitch.
It looked OK to me last night on the Telly, actually surprised me how good it looked in view of Fergies rant.
My missus says that's all fergie does, rants:)

Looking at the LCFC pitch on Monday, it looked like the team had been training on it.
Some managers of the lesser sides deliberately knacker their own pitch to stop the other team outplaying his own.

The Christmas/New Year period is never a good time for groundstaff, plenty of matches and also many clubs train on the main pitch over the festive period.
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bob smith
Posted 31 Jan 2008
Avatar:  76
Posts: 160

You all hate us and we don't care!

Why were Man Utd watering the pitch at half time yesterday?

What's that all about?
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rooter
Posted 31 Jan 2008 Last edited: 31 Jan 2008
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but bob, we all do that, don't you water your lawn too???
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jlawrence
Posted 31 Jan 2008
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Of course there's no bounce, bend your back and put some bloody effort in.

bob, I could be wrong but I believe watering at half time is to keep the speed of the ball across the surface consistently quick.
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rooter
Posted 31 Jan 2008 Last edited: 31 Jan 2008
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Posts: 223

maybe old trafford should look at some lights.
they seem to work well at arsenal, spurs, newcastle, anfield, boro, bolton, goodison, the hammers, villa, chelsea, sunderland and even twickers. these grounds have really stood up to the testing times since december.
old trafford is really a class act, and it is only fergies' extremely high standards that have him frustrated at the minute, where even any international manager would give an arm and a leg for that surface.
well done everybody, let's keep the media dogs away from our boys.
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Nick Regan
Posted 31 Jan 2008
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May be wrong but im sure Man United have the smaller rigs there.
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LittleDave
Posted 31 Jan 2008
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Access at Old Trafford looks a bit tight to me to get the rigs in and out???
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rooter
Posted 31 Jan 2008
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Posts: 223

can't be as tight as anfield, that's why they have the midi ones there.
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Yetanotherdave
Posted 31 Jan 2008 Last edited: 31 Jan 2008
rugby-french_25.jpg
Posts: 142

Ray Houghton hasn't got a clue, Idiot let's look at facts, ****** Winter Loads of rain, Fact. ****** Summers loads of rain, (leading to shallow rooting) Fact. These Pitches are only Grass, Fact. What do you expect?
MUPPETS and Andy Gray is no better leeboy!!!! he was pishe at football when he played anyway!!!
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leeboy
Posted 31 Jan 2008
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They were probably watering to add to the quick movement of the ball, and they are also not returfing the pitch contrary to some reports, which is good news because the lads down there have done an outstanding job in a very unforgiving environment over the last few years to maintain it to a level that has had to withstand domestic, european and international football as well as rugby throughout the past 5 seasons since it was reconstructed.
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dave r-b
Posted 31 Jan 2008
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Posts: 753

im now an ex groundsman but hey old habits die hard

maybe just maybe we should get our revenge on these muppets by logging on to the beebs 606 debate and sky sports forum and give them some grief on how crap they are.

or would that just bring us down to their very low level
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The hog
Posted 1 Feb 2008
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Posts: 9

mud mud glorious mud

dave:

leave 606 well alone mate. its full of muppets and wum's.
and the sky forum is no better.
the football forum i run they would never moan about pitches or groundsman. i'll ban em. Admin power.

i have trouble with rugby players training on the first team pitch then moaning about the mud.all they do is roll about in it an cuddle each other.
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dave r-b
Posted 2 Feb 2008
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Posts: 753

im now an ex groundsman but hey old habits die hard

Leeboy,

Did mr Gray come and see you today and compliment you on the pitch or is he keeping a low pofile?

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leeboy
Posted 2 Feb 2008
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No, not a chance. I did have a word with the Sky commentator about why Andy Gray chooses to criticise our pitch, which has now happened a couple of times, as he has done with a few others as well. He said that if he got the email I sent him asking him why he was saying it, he would just make the comments all the more as he is like that-I am assuming he has got the email I sent if thats the case. I dont mind the criticism too much if it is justified, but they were only too glad to come looking for a story when we did the patterns earlier in the season, yet dont come near us to ask whats wrong when we lose a bit of grass cover. For the shortcomings in the pitches appearance at the moment, it is possibly playing the best it has in the 5 years which we have been at the stadum-not bad considering it is bobbly.....
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dave r-b
Posted 2 Feb 2008
007.JPG
Posts: 753

im now an ex groundsman but hey old habits die hard

Just goes to show what a spineless, bottleless wazzerk he is.
it looked ok to me lee especially with the shocking weather youve had up your way in the last couple of day, oh and not forgetting jans weather as well.
TOP JOB
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zoid
Posted 2 Feb 2008
Avatar: Image9.png
Posts: 699

Andy Gray a wazzerk?

I think you've got your kind hat on there dave?

He's a F..... T...



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dave r-b
Posted 3 Feb 2008 Last edited: 3 Feb 2008
007.JPG
Posts: 753

im now an ex groundsman but hey old habits die hard

5.jpg
well Zoid,
didnt want to put my exact feelings as i feared PC would delete the post.

Lee and his team have set very high standards in pitch presentation, many of us lower level guys have tried to replicate what he has done, i personally have tried to copy some of Lees designs, whether they come off or not my efforts are very much appreciate by both our lads and the opposition. in my opinion if a team turn up and see a pitch that is presented well they get that feel good factor. thus seem to want to play better.
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Rob Goodes
Posted 3 Feb 2008
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Posts: 130

How do greenkeepers earn a living!!! ;-)

Pitch looks great dave r-b nice job mate.
couldnt agree more about the well presented pitch and the feel good factor.
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