In the mag: Suarez unleashed, Di Matteo talks sackings, history of the Makelele Role...
We at FFT pride ourselves on bringing you the best interviews with the game's biggest names, and in this month's issue - available from Wednesday March 5 in print and in a specially-designed-for-iPad version - we've got a doozy. We've been to Liverpool's Melwood training ground to pick the brain of the man who has undoubtedly been the star of the current Premier League season - Luis Suarez.
The last time we spent some quality time with Liverpool's No.7 was March 2011, when he had only just joined Liverpool and was, despite scoring oodles of goals for Ajax, still something on an unknown quantity on English shores.
Three years down the line, and we're all now fully familiar with the Uruguayan forward - or, at least, that's what you might think. FFT travelled to Merseyside to meet the man behind the headlines. Evra, Ivanovic, his on-off-on-off summer transfer to Arsenal - no topic is off-limits.
The Uruguayan’s primary aim for the next two months will be securing Liverpool a Champions League spot, but, in our latest issue, we also talk to a manager who has recently lifted the hallowed trophy aloft.
Former Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo is the latest big name to go One-on-One with FourFourTwo. The Swiss-Italian discusses the evolution of the west London club since Roman Abramovich’s takeover, his controversial sackings from both West Brom and Chelsea and his early days as a trainee butcher.
Speaking of former Chelsea midfielders; whatever happened to the Makelele Role?
For almost a decade, Claude clones ruled in front of the back four. But since Barcelona’s brilliance, top teams have begun to demand more dexterity from their midfield destroyers. We salute the past and ponder the future of a job one man made his own.
While Makelele’s specialisation may have been sitting back and keeping it simple, there are other players who approach the game with a dash more showmanship. Whether it’s between the legs, over the head, with a dip of the shoulder or a shuffle of the shines, nothing gets fans off their seats quite like a bit of trickery. But where did football’s sexiest moves come from? We life the lid of 20 of the best.
While some of football’s more outlandish tricksters may get crowds gawping, they’ve got nothing on 19th century Derby County star Archie Goodall, who, after retiring from the game in 1905, travelled Europe and the USA as a gravity-defying circus act.
We also try to find out how Burak Karan – a former team-mate of Sami Khedira and Kevin-Prince Boateng in Germany’s Under-21 side, and of Lewis Holtby at Alemannia Aachen – ended up killed in an air strike while allegedly fighting for Al-Qaeda in Syria.
Taking a 90% pay cut to chase your dreams of becoming a football manager may seem like madness - but not if you're new Brentford boss Mark Warburton. FFT meets the man who replaced Uwe Rosler at Griffin Park.
We also step inside the game's inner sanctum, a place where normal rules simply don't apply - the dressing room. Our picture special shows the likes of Andres Iniesta, Joe Hart and the reclining Mario Gomez (below, right) in a habitat we rarely get to see them occupy.
But that's not all. We also list football top 10 'tooled up' players, visit ex-Derby striker Marco Gabbiadini's hotel, speak to a man who tracked down 22 Ford Cortina's once owned to England's 1970 World Cup squad, continue our look ahead to the 2014 World Cup with our 'Destination Brazil' section and get top playing tips from Brad Friedel, Nikica Jelavic and Xavi in FFT Performance.
The April 2014 issue of FourFourTwo is brought to you by Roberto Di Matteo, Marco Gabbiadini, Benito Carbone, The Specials, Dani Alves, Luther Blissett, Alan Smith, Diego Forlan, Luis Suarez (and his mum), Mark Warburton, Matt Holland, Alex McLeish, Bebeto, Xavi, Robbie Fowler, Kevin Phillips, Brad Friedel, Nikica Jelavic and Ray Parlour.