Cover Feature: Ezzeldin Bahader takes veteran striker to new levels

This article first featured in Edition #14 of the RMD magazine (March 10, 2020)

Whoever said you can’t teach an old dog new tricks clearly had never met Egyptian forward Ezzeldin Bahader. The professional footballer, playing for Egyptian third tier side October 6, probably on paper wouldn’t seem to impressive – having only just made his professional debut for his new club, even if he did score late in a 1-1 draw with their rivals.

That is until you scan across to the striker’s date of birth, which would inform you that Bahader is in fact 75 years old. That’s not a typo, either. The septuagenarian is currently in the process of bidding to become the oldest ever professional footballer.

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Cover Feature: Why Alexander Isak is Sweden’s future star

This article first featured in Edition #13 of the RMD magazine (March 9, 2020)

When the ball nestled in the back of the Djurgarden net after a perfectly timed run and powerful header, it marked not just a 17th birthday to never forget for one local fan, but also the birth of one of Sweden’s brightest young talent’s growing reputation. That player was Alexander Isak.

Having already grabbed the opening goal in the Stockholm derby for AIK, taking a thoroughly ball confidently under his control and firing low and hard into the far corner, Isak’s second sent his side marching on their way to a memorable 3-0 victory over their bitter rivals.

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Cover Feature: How do we grow women’s football sustainably

This article first featured in Edition #12 of the RMD magazine (March 8, 2020)

Women’s football isn’t just some kind of novelty item. It’s here to stick around, has some extremely talented footballers plying their trade within the game and is on the cusp of real global development and adoption.

There are always going to be naysayers and outdated views towards the women’s game, right up until these viewpoints cycle themselves out of society. However, for the rest of the footballing community, who are ready to rally behind the female game and support it as it should be, how do we ensure that the game is brought up to the best possible level quickly but sustainably?

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Cover Feature: Banning pre-match handshakes is unhelpful

This article first featured in Edition #11 of the RMD magazine (March 7, 2020)

Coronavirus has set the world into panic stations, as the latest strain of a form of viruses which includes seasonal flu emerged in Wuhan, China and has since begun spreading globally. Still in the virus’ early stages, health officials around the world have rushed around to try and contain the virus, which increasingly looks set to become the newest name on the list of regular illnesses people must be careful about.

Much like seasonal flu, pneumonia (the very condition this latest coronavirus’ infection, Covid-19, presents patients with) it can be deadly, particularly to those with who are either elderly or suffering from underlying health conditions which may impact their immune system’s responses. However, it is worth understanding, despite the end-of-the-world rhetoric some sections of the media keep peddling, that this latest virus still has not proven itself as deadly as the aforementioned conditions like seasonal flu, which kill significantly more people each year than Covid-19 has done in the current outbreak, but which are now commonplace and so not treat with the same mass hysteria.

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Cover Feature: Mike Williamson leading Gateshead rebuild efforts

This article first featured in Edition #10 of the RMD magazine (March 6, 2020)

Gateshead FC have been through a tough time of late, but after financial and ownership troubles saw them relegated to the sixth tier National League North, they are currently under a significant rebuild being lead by player-manager and former Newcastle defender Mike Williamson.

Last season, under the controversial ownership of Dr Ranjan Varghese, and his associate and chief financial adviser Joseph Cala – a man quite literally banned from being involved in football – the then-fifth tier side underwent a season of turmoil and collapse off the field, while their players and staff fought valiantly on it to keep the side going.

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Cover Feature: Has globalisation killed the homegrown talent?

This article first featured in Edition #9 of the RMD magazine (March 5, 2020)

Homegrown talent is always a huge talking point for football fans across the world. Are the club doing enough to support talent from the local area? Is the club’s local identity being lost among the desire to better the squad with international imports? Does any of that really matter if the squad is looking to get through the door the greatest players?

It’s a common football supporter battleground: one that usually lends itself to no clear victor.

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Cover Feature: Expanding the A-League in the right location

This article first featured in Edition #8 of the RMD magazine (March 4, 2020)

Australian football has been on an upward journey over the last few years, as greater investment floods into the domestic top division, the A-League, and fanbases become vaster and more established. Well-known names have moved to play their domestic football in the country, while similarly the country continues to export more and more talented young stars.

Operating their top flight on a franchise system not dissimilar to the MLS in the United States, financially-strong, successful clubs are able to be born out of far less heritage and pre-established history than in traditional promotion and relegation systems, but it does also present officials in charge of Australian football’s premier division a different dilemma.

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