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Orange's football trivia expert answers your best questions

Ask The Gaffer

Ask The Gaffer
Ask The Gaffer

Andy Gault, Troon – 24 April 2014

Can you tell me Gaffer, when was the last time Man United recorded less than 3 shots on target in a Premier League game before Moyes took charge?

The Gaffer says:

It wasn't actually that long ago, Andy. Man United only managed two shots on target in Sir Alex Ferguson's third-last game in charge, the 1-0 home defeat against Chelsea when a certain Juan Mata netted the winner. Under David Moyes' tenure this season, the Red Devils managed just one shot on target against Liverpool (H), two shots on target against Arsenal (H and A) and three shots on target against Norwich (A), Chelsea (H) and Everton (A). Although there are a couple of wins within those games mentioned, the shots on target stats do coincide with Man United's woeful form against the top six this season.

Colin, Grimsby – 24 April 2014

Hi gaff, if Real and Atletico win their Champions League semi-finals, will that be the first time a European final has been between teams from the same city? And if not what is the closest milage between teams in a European cup final, my mate says it might be Chelsea v Man utd?

The Gaffer says:

Good question, Colin. An Atletico v Real Madrid final would indeed be the first time two teams from the same city have reached the European Cup/Champions League final. In fact, there has only been four occasions where both finalists are from the same country; Real Madrid v Valencia (99/00), AC Milan v Juventus (02/03), Man United v Chelsea (07/08) and last year's final between Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich. Although your friend is correct in pointing out the Man United v Chelsea final, only 86 miles separate Milan and Juventus, whereas 207 miles separate the Red Devils and the Blues. Between Real and Valencia there's 224 miles and last year's German finalists are 370 miles apart. A mere five miles separate Real Madrid's Bernabeu and Atletico's Vicente Calderon.

David Forster, Co.Durham – 23 April 2014

Hi Gaffer, There is one team in the United Kingdom with a letter in there name that no other club has, what is the letter and who is ths team?

The Gaffer says:

I'm feeling in a good mood this afternoon so I'll indulge you this one old chestnut! It's St Johnstone; the only league team in Great Britain with a J in their name.

Mark, Stoke-on-Trent – 23 April 2014

Hi gaffer, awesome page. Some managers have been replaced to great effect this season (Palace) whereas some have had no effect at all (Cardiff). Of the teams in the Prem that have changed managers this season, how have their teams fared in terms of points per game before and after? Is the grass always greener?

The Gaffer says:

Crystal Palace have certainly seen the most dramatic upturn in fortunes since sacking their manager this season. Here are the relative points per game of each manager at each club that have made a change, in order of success: Crystal Palace - Holloway 0.38 / Pulis 1.63. Sunderland - Di Canio 0.2 / Poyet 0.96. Tottenham - Villas-Boas 1.69 / Sherwood 1.89. Fulham - Jol 0.77 / Meulensteen 0.83 / Magath 1.11. West Brom - Clarke 0.94 / Mel 0.86. Cardiff - Mackay 0.94 / Solskjaer 0.86. So, five changes resulted in improved results (two dramatically and three less so) and two led to a decline in results. (Of the other three sackings, Swansea and Man Utd are yet to appoint permanent successors, and Neil Adams has only had two games in charge of Norwich so the comparison isn't really a fair one).

Hammy Bradstock, Plymouth – 23 April 2014

Gaffer, we all know you are the real "chosen one" but how did David Moyes fare in his first 34 league games with Everton compared to the same period at Man Utd?

The Gaffer says:

David Moyes' record in his first 34 league games at Everton is startlingly similar to his first 34 at Old Trafford. After taking over at Goodison on 14 March 2002, Moyes won 16, drew 7 and lost 11 of his first 34. At Manchester United, his record was won 17, drew 6, lost 11.

Dr Evil, Planet Zorb – 3 April 2014

What significant goal did Moritz Voltz score?

The Gaffer says:

Moritz Volz was the rather unlikely scorer of the Premier League's 15,000th goal when he netted for Fulham against Chelsea in December 2006. Other Prem goalscoring landmarks are as follows: 1000th - Mike Newell (Blackburn v Forest, April 1993), 2000th - Mick Quinn (Coventry v Man City, Feb 1994), 5000th - Chris Sutton and Andy Townsend jointly (Blackburn v Leicester and Aston Villa v Southampton, December 1996), 10,000th - Les Ferdinand (Tottenham v Fulham, December 2001) and 20,000th - Marc Albrighton (Aston Villa v Arsenal, December 2011).

Sam, Suffolk – 31 March 2014

Can you name the player (outfielder) who has played the most Premier League games without scoring?

The Gaffer says:

Kenny Cunningham PA

That particular 'accolade' belongs to Kenny Cunningham, whose personal goal record during his 10-year Premier League career is completely blank. In all he played 335 top-flight matches (starting 334 of them, and coming off the bench just once) for Wimbledon and Birmingham without ever hitting the net. He did score just one goal as a professional - it was for Millwall in Division One (i.e. second tier) in a 2-2 draw away to Portsmouth on 2 April 1994.

Colin Robson, Middlesbrough – 7 March 2014

How many players with the letter x in their surname have full caps for England?

The Gaffer says:

Bit of a 'pub classic' this one, so it's certainly worth repeating - Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Graham Rix, Lee Dixon, Kerry Dixon, Graeme le Saux, Jason Wilcox, Mike Duxbury, Jack Cox, Ronnie Dix, John Dixon, Albert Quixhall, Freddie Fox and George Molyneux.

Ken McKie, Newcastle – 3 March 2014

How many players have scored for both teams in a Premier League game and can you name them?

The Gaffer says:

Excellent question, Ken. There's a lot more than you probably think: 2013-14 - Fabian Delph, James Chester, Vincent Kompany, Phil Bardsley. 12-13 - Wayne Rooney, Gareth Bale, Emmerson Boyce, Jonny Evans. 11-12 - Thomas Vermaelen, Danny Graham. 10-11 - Brede Hangeland, Martin Skrtel. 09-10 - Kamil Zayatte, Carlton Cole, Jody Craddock, Leon Osman, Emmanuel Adebayor. 08-09 - Kevin Davies. 07-08 - William Gallas. 05-06 - George Boateng. 04-05 - James Beattie. 02-03 - Edu, Michael Svensson. 01-02 - Niall Quinn, David Beckham. 00-01 - David Unsworth, Mark Venus. 99-00 - Dion Dublin, Chris Armstrong. 98-99 - Gareth Barry, Frank Lampard. 96-97 - Scott Minto. 94-95 - Neil Maddison. 93-94 - Craig Burley, Chris Sutton. I make that 35 and counting!

Crag, Wigan – 14 February 2011

What is the highest number you can have on the back of your shirt?

The Gaffer says:

Ceni PA

It depends entirely on the league in question, and whether they entertain such nonsense - Mido requested 99 when he joined Tottenham, but the Premier League refused. Looking further afield, Rogerio Ceni wore number 618 during his record-breaking 618th appearance for Sao Paolo, which is believed to be the highest shirt number ever worn during a professional match. Vitor Baia wore 99 for Porto in the 2003 Uefa Cup final, which is the highest number in a European match.

Harry, Torpoint – 9 December 2010

What's the most amount of goals scored in an English league match?

The Gaffer says:

Seventeen, set on Boxing Day 1935 when Tranmere spanked Oldham 13-4.

Paul Eastwood, UK – 9 December 2010

Name the footballer who has scored a goal in the top flight in the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s?

The Gaffer says:

Roy Race, from Roy of the Rovers. Next!

Aaron, Leeds – 14 February 2011

Which is the biggest stadium in the world?

The Gaffer says:

May Day Stadium

The Rungrado May Day Stadium in North Korea can seat 150,000, making it the largest non-racing stadium capacity in the world. The Maracana in Rio seats 88,992, but reputedly housed a whopping 199,854 spectators for the 1950 World Cup final.

Taffy, UK – 9 December 2010

Is it true that West Auckland in County Durham won the first World Cup?

The Gaffer says:

West Auckland were the winners of the Sir Thomas Lipton Trophy, one of the first international footballing competitions, in its two initial years (1909 and 1911). It is sometimes referred to as 'The First World Cup' but is predated by the Torneo Internazionale Stampa Sportiva, which was hosted in 1908, as the first international competition.

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