Champions League team of the week: Bayern and Barcelona impress

November 6, 2015

“It is no surprise that Bayern Munich have three players in the Champions League team of the week after their superb display in the 5-1 win at home to Arsenal. Germany forward Thomas Muller weighed in with two goals, and Barcelona duo Neymar and Luis Suarez join him in attack after scoring in their win over BATE Borisov. For the second matchweek running there is just one Premier League player in the XI, with Manchester City midfielder Fernandinho celebrating his part in the win in Seville which saw City into the last 16.” BBC

Talent Radar Young Defender Rankings: Bellerin climbs, and Gimenez makes the cut

November 3, 2015

“Judging the calibre of a young player is often a tricky task. Perceived potential has an important bearing in any consideration and is just one of the many parameters to consider when trying to quantify the ability of football’s young stars. To add a basis to what may be a leap of faith, it is useful to look back and trace the growth, or indeed lack thereof, in young players.” Outside of the Boot

High hopes of Italian glory for Napoli

November 1, 2015

Napoli's Jose Maria Callejon looks at the ball as he runs during their Italian Serie A soccer match against Fiorentina at the Artemio Franchi stadium in Florence October 30, 2013. REUTERS/Giampiero Sposito (ITALY - Tags: SPORT SOCCER) Picture Supplied by Action Images
“So far this season in the Serie A, there has been several highly impressive team performances coming from the highly renowned Italian footballing giants, alongside a few surprise starts to the campaign from teams such as Sassuolo who find themselves in fifth place, and Fiorentina who have been very good so far this season, currently in third place place behind Napoli and league leaders Roma. However, if there is one team that has been showing just how good they are this season; it’s Napoli. Maurizio Sarri’s men have been in fine form, both in their domestic campaign and in the Europa League, winning every single European game they have been faced with.” backpagefootball

Goal Analysis: How Yannick Ferreira Carrasco’s goal announced himself at Atletico Madrid

November 1, 2015

“Atletico Madrid vs Valencia. Without a spare seat in the house, we were in for a real battle in what promised to be a mouthwatering clash between two historic Spanish giants that both came into this one having boasted wins in the Champions League days earlier. True to their trademark, the hosts were out of the blocks like greyhounds and within minutes Valencia goalkeeper Jaume Domenech was forced into several top drawer saves to keep Simeone’s men at bay. The heat was turned up further and Atletico’s Rojiblanco fans greeted every one of their player’s challenges with deafening cheers of encouragement which made for a ‘hairs on the back of the neck’ atmosphere in the famous Vicente Calderon stadium that lays beside the Manzanares river in the working class district of Arganzuela, south Madrid.” Outside of the Boot

Around Europe: Sherwood axed; Suarez, Aubameyang net hat tricks

October 26, 2015

“Yet another dramatic week in Europe’s major leagues saw pressure increase on Jose Mourinho, while there were hat tricks for some of the continent’s big-name players, like Barcelona’s Luis Suarez and Borussia Dortmund’s in-form Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Bayern Munich might have found a successor to Pep Guardiola, while there was a dramatic return of the ex in Italy.” SI

Leverkusen 4 – 4 AS Roma: Schmidt’s Zunkunftfußball on Tour

October 21, 2015

“Regardless of what happens today, yesterday’s 4-4 feast of a draw between Bayer Leverkusen and AS Roma at the BayArena is the match of the round. Perhaps feast is the wrong descriptor. Let’s try avant-garde installation piece instead. Adapting this descriptor instead, has avant-gardeism ever been so much fun? (Hmmmm.) Of course, all the fun should be attributed to Roger Schmidt’s vision and tactics for Tuesday’s match. For over a season now, in the Bundesliga, we’ve come to identify Schmidt’s hyper-pressing system at Leverkusen, which features an excessive number ball-seekers flooding forward to win back the ball quickly (a la Kloppian gegen-pressing) then flooding the width of the opponent’s box.” Bundesliga Fanatic

Tactical Analysis: Inter Milan 0-0 Juventus | A stalemate of two halves

October 21, 2015

“Sunday saw one of the most important matches in European and world football, the Derby d’Italia, which pitted at the Giuseppe Meazza Internazionale Milano of Roberto Mancini who arrived in second place in Serie A and Juventus of Massimiliano Allegri, who have not had a good start this season and in this game looked to raise their performance. The Nerazzurri lined up in a 4-4-2 system, with two central midfielders (Medel and Melo) who would lend aid to the defense if necessary.” Outside of the Boot


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