The talk of Sky Sports
Last Updated: March 8, 2013 1:07pm
For the best in up-to-the-minute sports analysis, look no further than skysports.com, your online home for expert opinion.
Whatever your sport, our team of pundits, columnists and bloggers are here every week to bring you the sharpest views and the shrewdest comments on the latest developments.
Some of the most respected names in the business, including Jamie Redknapp, Stuart Barnes, Stevo and Paul Merson deliver their views with their expert columns, while we also have blogs from the likes of David Lloyd and Jeff Stelling.
Here's a snapshot of what the experts have been saying over the last seven days...
"I think the issue of officiating is both important and - at times - bordering on insane. Referees are in the thick of it and inevitably receive much of the flak and frankly, as long as the tone is polite and the questioning non-abusive, so they should. The pressures and the palpitations brought on players and coaches from match changing mistakes are massive and referees should not be above open debate. However, I think the finger pointed at the man in the middle is a mistake. The rule book appears to play as significant a role in controversy as the whistle blower and his aides."
After a series of controversial decisions, Stuart Barnes calls for a re-write of the rule book.
Taken from 'The thick of it'
"McIlroy is going to make mistakes and if he got frustrated with his form, as all golfers do from time to time, he should be given a bit of leeway, because he is the sort of streaky player who can have a few dodgy weeks and then come roaring back. Plenty of pundits have criticised his equipment switch from Titleist to Nike but, as I've said before, I don't think that has anything to do with his struggles; people change clubs all the time, even if they stay within the same company. I cannot see much difference between McIlroy's swing now and the one that served him so brilliantly last season and I think his ills stem from not playing that many tournaments."
Rob Lee says Rory McIlroy must play more events in order to address his recent slump in form.
Taken from 'Pump up the volume'
"I see so much room for improvement with Sociedad and make them favourites for the top four now; Carlos Vela and Antoine Griezmann are doing well, while Asier Illarramendi is a key player and though they are weak at the back, I don't see any side, other than Barcelona and the Madrid clubs, better than them. Their 3-3 draw with Betis over the weekend was one of the best games we have ever done on Sky Sports. There wasn't much physicality but it was end-to-end, with the teams playing the part of heavyweight boxers knocking lumps off each other."
Guillem Balague explains why Real Sociedad can make the top four."
Taken from 'Perfect blend'
"I think that John felt that he had earned, and owed himself, one last hurrah at a club with a rich tradition. He probably thought that the age of 62 he would not be offered another job that would excite and re-energise him like this one. I know he leaves a huge void at your club but the sequence of results between September and December has put you in a good position, considering the budget Still has had to operate with. John will feel that he has left Dagenham in far better state than he found them and I agree."
John Still's decision to manage Luton proves he remains hungry for success, says Peter Beagrie.
Taken from 'Still life'
"If the rumours are correct, the leading sides in Super League want to find a way of making the World Club Challenge even bigger and better than we saw at Headingley two weeks ago. Gary Hetherington's idea is that the three top clubs from Super League take on their counterparts from the NRL. That means that third place will take on third place and second will play second. But I just can't see how we can make it anything more than first against first - the winners of the Super League against the champions from the NRL."
Phil Clarke says the World Club Challenge must sell out Wembley before it aims for global domination.
Taken from 'Nurturing our game'
"How would video technology of that incident have helped us when here we are almost 24 hours on still debating the rights and wrongs of the Nani decision? Too much of football comes down to interpretation of the laws, and complications often ensue when officials, under Uefa's jurisdiction, take one view of an incident which might have been seen very differently to a Premier League ref. But never mind that. Two blokes in a pub watching the game on TV can come to an entirely opposite conclusion having viewed the same replay evidence over and over again. That's football and we're stuck with it, and that's why it's a national obsession."
Video technology has improved cricket and rugby, says David Jones, but it won't fix all of football's ills.
Taken from 'Techno talk'
"After their win in the North London derby last weekend Tottenham have strengthened their hold on third, but there's no doubt they owe a lot to Bale for their league position. Meanwhile, Suarez has continued to perform at a high level all season and has bagged 21 goals - including a hat-trick last weekend - which makes him the top scorer in the league. For his consistency he just edges the contest against Bale, for me. Remember, Bale had only netted six times at Christmas, before he went on this superb run of form."
Jamie says Luis Suarez has out-performed Gareth Bale this season and will come out on top on Sunday too.
Taken from 'King Luis'
"Murray will leapfrog Roger Federer in the rankings if he wins at Indian Wells and, even if he doesn't, he will make that step up soon enough and that could have a crucial bearing on his French Open chances. In fact Murray doesn't even have to be crowned Indian Wells champion to become No 2 if he makes the final and Federer fails to reach the last four - and given that the Swiss should meet Rafael Nadal in the quarter-finals, that's not a given. I've no doubt that Nadal, buoyed by his victory at the Mexican Open, will be itching to have a crack at Federer and Murray alike."
Barry Cowan says it's now only a matter of when, not if, Andy Murray becomes World No 2.
Taken from 'Murray moving on up'
"If Rooney is on his way out of Old Trafford, there will be plenty of takers. Don't believe for a minute that Manchester City aren't interested. They may say that, but they would, wouldn't they? They were interested before, in 2010, when it looked as though Rooney was on his way out and I've no doubt they're interested again. Why wouldn't they be? I've heard some people say that Rooney doesn't perform on the big stage, that he is a flat-track bully. It's not a view I subscribe to. In fact, I think it's absolute nonsense."
Jeff Stelling says there'll be plenty of takers if Wayne Rooney does leave Man Utd - starting with Man City.
Taken from 'Moving forward'
"I have some grave concerns for Sale. They were embarrassing against Leicester in the Premiership and if I had played in that game I would have been ashamed to pick up my wages! It was not a professional performance and they really need to sort themselves out. They had a good strong side out but their attitude for whatever reason was appalling. They just laid down and did not put up any sort of fight; it was far too easy for Leicester. Against Saracens they really need to start with Andy Powell. He is the only ball-carrying back row forward that Sale have got. James Gaskell is a good player but he hits contact too upright and is a bit too light. Then you have Dan Braid and Dave Seymour who are two fetchers. End of."
Dewi Morris casts his eye over the LV=Cup semi-finals and predicts wins for Bath and Saracens.
Taken from 'No hope for Sale?'