When it comes to English football, the number one columnist is Martin Samuel who recently hung up his boots at The Times and is now writing for cross-town rival The Daily Mail

In 2008, Samuel was named Sports Journalist of The Year in England. The seven times winner of Sports Writer of the Year award is the most successful sports journalist of his generation.

Many readers may remember Samuel for his strong but fair criticism of Steve McClaren’s reign as England manager, as well as his jabs at Major League Soccer and Beckham’s move to the LA Galaxy. A collection of Samuel’s columns still remains on The Times website, while his most recent columns can be found at The Daily Mail. Samuel kicked off his new column at The Daily Mail this past Sunday. According to one report, Samuel could be on a salary of £400,000 at The Mail.

So far, Samuel has written four columns for The Mail. One on the timely subject of clubs cashing in their superstars to help lessen the blows of the Credit Crunch. And another one on why history is stacked against Sir Alex Ferguson’s desire to win the Champions League this season as well as the Premier League, FA Cup and League Cup.

The Daily Mail’s acquisition of Samuel is a huge coup for the newspaper. Its online presence has improved considerably in one year since it was named the fifth best online newspaper for football news. The site has undergone a website redesign. It’s still too busy but has come a long way, and the signing of Samuel will definitely increase its traffic.