Author Topic: World Cup and European leagues  (Read 429791 times)

Offline Ryan Scott (Hoops Fan)

  • All-American
  • ******
  • Posts: 12906
  • Karma: +797/-368
    • View Profile
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1005 on: January 01, 2008, 05:49:24 pm »


I got to see the thrilling Chelsea-Villa match live on Fox Sports en Espanol (surprisingly it was in English).  That was just an incredible match, but it was quite easy to see the toll that injuries have taken on the Blues.  Terry would have kept half of the Villa goals from even getting attempted and Lampard's early exit hurt as well, especially when they brought on a not-yet-fit Ballack to replace him.
Lead Columnist for D3hoops.com
@ryanalanscott just about anywhere

Offline Hoosier Titan

  • All-Conference
  • ****
  • Posts: 898
  • Karma: +107/-44
    • View Profile
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1006 on: January 02, 2008, 09:45:51 am »
Hoops,

That was a great match.  What did you think of some of the cards?  I thought the red on Knight was a little dodgy.  The Villains had another cracker of a match yesterday with Spurs.

Joe Wally,

Much as it pains me to admit it, I fear your prediction for the final two in the EPL is correct.  I think calling Liverpool a "one trick pony" is a little harsh as long as they have Steven Gerrard, a host of other scoring midfielders, and one of the best defenses in the EPL.  But the Reds have had several opportunities lately when the other Big Three have lost or tied and they haven't made the most of them.  Time's a'wasting to catch up.

Man City has been the big surprise for me--they've cooled off somewhat but they haven't faded as I expected them to.  I guess there were positive reasons why Sven was hired as England coach (which I had time to forget during the World Cup).

At the bottom of the table, I think Derby stands alone as the most inept (least talented?) and certain to go down.  They have played better since Jewell took over, but their defense is just awful.  I saw Fulham under Sanchez; perhaps it wasn't a fair chance to assess them since the match was at Anfield and they were clearly playing for the draw.  But Clint Dempsey seemed the only real bright spot.  You mention Roy Keane keeping Sunderland up--that would be a truly great accomplishment for a manager.  For now they are safe--time will tell.
You'll never walk alone.

joepieters

  • Guest
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1007 on: January 02, 2008, 10:00:20 am »
The Chelsea Villa match was tremendous.  I agree that the card on Knight was sketchy, at best.  Ballack looked as if he had been shot as he dove to the ground.

H.T.

I don't disagree that Liverpool have those other tools, but IMHO (and it is humble) the only one that they seem to use effectively and consistently is Torres.

 

Offline Ryan Scott (Hoops Fan)

  • All-American
  • ******
  • Posts: 12906
  • Karma: +797/-368
    • View Profile
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1008 on: January 02, 2008, 07:30:11 pm »

I wasn't surprised at all by the Knight card.  It was a poor choice on his part, especially when he knew full well the refs look to equalize.

If it was the first incident of the game, it wouldn't have been called as it was.  I was just impressed that those Villans never gave up.  I haven't seen a team so tenacious in any sport in a while.
Lead Columnist for D3hoops.com
@ryanalanscott just about anywhere

Offline Hoosier Titan

  • All-Conference
  • ****
  • Posts: 898
  • Karma: +107/-44
    • View Profile
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1009 on: January 02, 2008, 07:50:13 pm »
Okay, I'm done defending the Scousers (Liverpool) for a while.  Ouch.  Sometimes, as the song says,  love hurts.  Titus Bramble??? :(
You'll never walk alone.

Offline ScotsFan

  • All-American
  • ******
  • Posts: 3009
  • Karma: +212/-329
    • View Profile
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1010 on: January 03, 2008, 12:01:30 pm »
Nice to see some life on this board again.

I too got to see that Chelsea-Villa match and I concur, what a great match that was!!!  You have to give Villa lots of credit for the tenacity they showed in continuing to battle back and at the Bridge to boot!

As for the race for the Premiership, I wouldn't be too quick to declare this a 2 horse race just yet.  Chelsea is still right there only 6 points back.  They've got to be kicking themselves for losing those 2 points in that Villa draw!  Chelsea's schedule looks very favorable for them to rack up some points if they can continue to get favorable results.

Beyond Arsenal, ManU and Chelsea I really don't see anyone else in a position to make a push to challenge the top 3.  However, the fight for the final Champions League spot should be fun to watch as well.  As it stands now, the difference between 4th place City and 9th place Blackburn is just 6 points!  And only 3 points separate City, Liverpool, Villa and Everton!   

joepieters

  • Guest
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1011 on: January 03, 2008, 12:37:48 pm »
As I look at Chelsea, they've lost Drogba to injury, and have struggled as a result.  They are about to lose the true heart and soul of their team, Essien (along w/ Drogba).  This won't result in a "disaster" for Chelsea because there are too many talented players on that roster relative to the rest of the league, but it will prevent them from making up any ground on Arsenal or Man U, and will most likely result in them losing ground.

Watched Man City play Newcastle last night.  Starting with Dunne & Richards at the back, that is a very very nice team.  If they can get Vassel heated up, that can be a very dangerous team.

What's to be said about Newcastle, just a shambles.  Alardyce must be wishing he were back at the Reebok right now.

Offline ScotsFan

  • All-American
  • ******
  • Posts: 3009
  • Karma: +212/-329
    • View Profile
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1012 on: January 17, 2008, 10:31:05 am »
I'm surprised that there hasn't been any chatter about the transfers going on in the Premeirship.  Most notbaly, the transfers that Chelsea picked up!

Nicolas Anelka from Bolton was signed for 15 million pounds and they also added Serbian defender Branislav Ivanovic from Lokomotiv Moscow for a measley 9 million pounds.  Chelsea has faaaar outspent any other club with their 24 million pounds spent on the 2 transfers.

I think that Anelka will fill in nicely for the Blues until Drogba's return.  And apparantly, Anelka is looking forward to playing alongside Drogba up front for Chelsea.  He said that he is not looking to be on the pitch just to score and that he is willing to adapt his game to make sure that he and Drogba could form a good partnership.

We shall see if the 2 scorers can co-exhist.  It's easier said than done the way I see it. 

As for Chelsea, it looks as if they are definately not going away anytime soon.  They have pulled to within 4 points of the co-leaders Arsenal and ManU.  With their transfer additions, they have appeared to make themselves even stronger. 

Overall, I just don't see Arsenal being able to sustain their lead.  ManU have caught them and the Red Devils look to be hitting on all cylinders right now.  And with Chelsea also breathing down the Gunner's necks, I just don't see them withstanding the pressure.

Beyond those three, the rest of the challengers appear to be fading and now the fight for them is for the 4th and final Champs League spot.  And you couldn't ask for a better race as 4 teams are currently tied for that 4th spot with Liverpool having a slight advantage with a game in hand.

Anyone else have any thoughts on the transfer market to date?

joepieters

  • Guest
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1013 on: January 17, 2008, 11:31:37 am »
It's been suprisingly quiet over the first two weeks.

Sunderland picked up a nice kid, Mvoto from PSG.

Tottenahm looks to be first in line for Fred from Lyon.  It seems to me that Tottenham would be better off holding on to Berbatov rather than bringing a new kid in and waiting the two to three months it will take for him to get acclimated to the Premiership.

It will be interesting to see what Keegan does at Newcastle.

Offline Hoosier Titan

  • All-Conference
  • ****
  • Posts: 898
  • Karma: +107/-44
    • View Profile
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1014 on: January 17, 2008, 01:01:57 pm »
It is nice to see life on this board again.  My problem as a Liverpool supporter, is, well, Liverpool :D.
Seriously, they have to stop getting draws and get some wins.  The trouncing of Luton Town in the rematch was a start, and I felt better about the initial 0-0 draw when the announcer said that Luton had achieved a draw in their own league after having 3 men sent off. 

Since classes have started up again I haven't had a chance to watch a lot of other teams' matches.  Earlier, I thought Arsenal showed the most potential to take the League, but obviously Man U are coming on strong.  I have always liked Anelka; he should be a good get for Chelsea. 

I suspect that all the manager-owner shenanigans have distracted everyone and hurt Liverpool's play.  And I've long suspected that Daniel Aggar's injury is worse than was let on, and that that's why Rafa Benitez was so insistent, back in November and December, on getting another defender.  They've acquired Martin Skrtel, a Slovakian centre-back, but I'm not sure that's the acquisition Rafa was looking for.  For people who admitted that they knew next to nothing about football when they acquired the team, the new owners are micromanaging to a surprising extent (the latest rumor was that Rafa was gone if they lost to Luton).  I hope they simply back off and let the manager manage until the end of the season.

Monday's Liverpool-Aston Villa match is huge for both sides, as they are even on points.  Villa has had some tough losses and can be scary.
You'll never walk alone.

joepieters

  • Guest
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1015 on: January 17, 2008, 01:21:14 pm »
In spite of my earlier prediction regarding where Liverpool will land (which I stand by) it does not seem to me that you can look at that roster and then blame Benitez for their current results.

Offline Hoosier Titan

  • All-Conference
  • ****
  • Posts: 898
  • Karma: +107/-44
    • View Profile
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1016 on: January 17, 2008, 01:37:34 pm »
In spite of my earlier prediction regarding where Liverpool will land (which I stand by) it does not seem to me that you can look at that roster and then blame Benitez for their current results.

I agree with not blaming Benitez, but apparently the new owners don't agree with us, if what's been reported is true.
You'll never walk alone.

Offline Hoosier Titan

  • All-Conference
  • ****
  • Posts: 898
  • Karma: +107/-44
    • View Profile
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1017 on: January 17, 2008, 01:56:08 pm »
The current Liverpool side have drawn, in the EPL, with Chelsea, Portsmouth, Birmingham City, Spurs, Arsenal, Blackburn, Manchester City, Wigan, and Middlesbrough.  They've lost to Reading.  Leaving aside the draws with Chelsea and Arsenal, if they have aspirations of improving their standing, Liverpool should have beaten sides like Birmingham, Wigan, and Middlesbrough.  I think that's what the criticism is about.
You'll never walk alone.

joepieters

  • Guest
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1018 on: January 17, 2008, 02:50:32 pm »
My Gunners are rubbing their hands over the same sort of run of form recently.  It's reminiscent of the constant game of catch-up that they seemed to play in every match last year.

Now w/ Van Persie down they really need to see Eduardo come into form.

Offline Stinger

  • Starter
  • ***
  • Posts: 649
  • Karma: +326/-178
    • View Profile
    • K Hornet Hoops
Re: World Cup and European leagues
« Reply #1019 on: January 17, 2008, 04:04:01 pm »
I've always thought Anelka is more trouble than he's worth.  I've had a bad taste in my mouth since his days at Madrid. But, I guess with their injury problems, they had to do it.
There's only two things I hate in this world. People who are intolerant of other people's cultures and the Dutch.

Nigel Powers - Goldmember