Cardozo hits 10-man Liverpool

April 2, 2010

“Whether it is called the Stadium of Light or the Estadio da Luz; whether it is by the Wear or the Tagus, it is a venue that this season Liverpool have left with bleeding, self-inflicted wounds.” (Independent)

Benfica 2-1 Liverpool: Benfica scrap to a victory, but it should have been more resounding
“A decent game for the neutral tonight, but fairly underwhelming from a tactical point of view. Both sides played as expected, the result was no surprise, and all the goals came from defensive mistakes rather than attacking brilliance. Benfica played with a variation of their usual shape, because of the injury to Javier Saviola. Pablo Aimar moved forward into a more offensive role behind Oscar Cardoso, whilst Carlos Martins came into the centre of midfield. This change meant that Ramires and Angel di Maria played slightly wider than usual, and the two swapped wings throughout the game, although di Maria was always more effective on his natural left-hand side.” (Zonal Marking)

Benfica turn their attentions to Liverpool
“One league title in the past 15 years hasn’t done much to expand Benfica’s trophy room. Fruitless seasons have witnessed a long line of increasingly inept managers – 15 of them since 1995. Only Giovanni Trappatoni could leave with some integrity after Benfica stumbled to the title in 2005. The lack of continuity had left its mark on the club and success seemed as distant as ever, until the arrival of Jorge Jesus.” (WSC)

Benfica 2-1 Liverpool – Recap and Video Highlights – UEFA Europa League – Thursday, April 1, 2010
“Portuguese side Benfica hosted Liverpool in the UEFA Europa League quarterfinal 1st leg on Thursday, April 1, 2010. Both sides are favorites to win the entire tournament but for Liverpool it’s much more important to salvage their season. Liverpool are struggling to qualify for the Champions League next season and could be in serious financial troubles unless they can find success in the Europa League.” (The 90th Minute)

World Cup Gallery

April 2, 2010

“Having put a card reading ‘PRESS’ in the brim of his hat and given him some sandwiches, Dotmund will be producing some World Cup previews for this site on the next ten Fridays before the tournament kicks off in South Africa in 11 weeks time. You have been warned. Today, our resident ‘artist’ casts his ‘artistic’ eye over the official World Cup posters from down the years. You have, as I say, been warned.” (twohundredpercent)

Media glare continues to suffocate Brazil’s stars

April 2, 2010

“In the 1974 World Cup Brazil took such a beating from Holland that four years later it was obsessed with imitating the “total football” of the Dutch, with their constant positional changes and intense pressure on the ball. It didn’t work. As one Brazilian journalist commented,’in a team game like soccer you need to have the right cultural base to introduce modifications’.” (SI – Tim Vickery)

Ferenc Puskas: Magical Magyar

April 2, 2010

Ferenc Puskas
“Like Johan Cruyff, the story of Ferenc Puskas is the story of a glorious failure. Possessing possibly the best left-foot shot in the history of football, the man known as the ‘Galloping Major’ – by virtue of his playing for army-team Honved – was the skipper of a side that were overwhelming favourites to win the World Cup.” (ESPN)

Life in ‘Tin Can Town’ for the South Africans evicted ahead of World Cup

April 2, 2010

“Children squint as wind whips the grey sand into their faces. A teenager braves the flies and stench of a leaking outdoor toilet to draw water from a standpipe. He stares vacantly along regimented rows of corrugated iron shacks encircled by a tall, concrete fence. No grass or trees grow here.” (Guardian)

Football Weekly Extra: Arsenal back from brink in Barça clash

April 2, 2010

“After a fantastic midweek of Champions League action, Sean Ingle, Barry Glendenning and Raphael Honigstein join James Richardson to look back at the key moments. First up, the pod assess how Arsenal were able to get back into their thunderously exciting first-leg against Barcelona and assess what chance their injury-hit squad have in the second leg.” (Guardian – James Richardson)