Barca breeze past Bilbao

April 4, 2010

“Barcelona showed they have plenty in reserve ahead of Tuesday’s Champions League quarter-final second leg against Arsenal as they beat Athletic Bilbao 4-1 with a team featuring several fringe players at the Nou Camp.” (ESPN)

FC Barcelona – 4, Athletic Bilbao – 1
“FC Barcelona moved back to the top of La Liga witha 4-1 win against Athletic Bilbao and will remain there for atleast 24 hours. Bojan who started in place of Ibrahimovic, who got injured in warm-up scored twice and Messi and Jeffren scored one each for Barca. Susaeta scored the consolation goal for Athletic Bilbao. This victory is more sweet considering that many of the regular starters were rested for this encounter and still Barca was able to dominate the game. I have criticised Guardiola’s strange tactics many times and this match also I was clueless when I saw Chygrynskiy and Pique in the centre of defense.” (All About FC Barcelona)

Americans Abroad in the EPL Recap and Video Highlights – Saturday, April 3, 2010

April 4, 2010

“It was an average day for Americans playing in the English Premier League as some had success (Brad Friedel) and others didn’t (Hahnemann and Altidore). Jozy Altidore come on as a substitute for Hull City while goalkeepers Brad Friedel and Marcus Hahnemann played the full matches for their clubs. With Hahnemann’s recent form and regular playing time, he could be making a strong case for the back-up to Tim Howard for the USA at the World Cup. Here’s a recap along with video highlights for Saturday, April 3, 2010” (The 90th Minute)

Birmingham 1 – 1 Liverpool

April 4, 2010

Tiziano Vecellio
“Liverpool’s hopes of securing fourth spot and Champions League qualification suffered a big blow after a lacklustre draw at Birmingham. In a dour first half, Maxi Rodriguez hit the bar for the Reds, while Roger Johnson headed over at the other end. Liverpool took the lead when Steven Gerrard turned Lee Bowyer to curl in after Glen Johnson’s mis-hit pass. Birmingham hit back as Liam Ridgewell bundled in James McFadden’s cross and survived three late David Ngog chances.” (BBC)

Reds European dreams on hold
“Liverpool’s hopes of securing a Champions League spot are hanging by a slender thread after Birmingham defender Liam Ridgewell earned his side a share of the spoils at St. Andrew’s. Reds skipper Steven Gerrard put his side ahead a minute into the second half but Ridgewell levelled matters nine minutes later.” (ESPN)

Liverpool held by Birmingham as Champions League hopes fade
“There is no disgrace in drawing with a Birmingham City side that have now taken points off every club in the top six at home but the harsh reality for Liverpool is that matching their rivals’ results is no longer enough. Liam Ridgewell’s equaliser, after Steven Gerrard had put Liverpool in front with his 10th goal of the season, means that Rafael Benítez’s side are four points behind fourth-placed Manchester City having played a game more.” (Guardian)

Liverpool draws with Birmingham, loses ground in hunt for fourth
“Rafa Benitez defended his decision to substitute star striker Fernando Torres despite seeing his misfiring Liverpool side drop further points in the race for fourth place with a 1-1 draw away to Birmingham.” (SI)

Birmingham City 1-1 Liverpool – Recap and Video Highlights
“Liverpool traveled to St Andrew’s Stadium to face Birmingham City in the English Premier League on Sunday, April 4, 2010. They needed a win to gain ground on 4th place Manchester City and keep their Champions League hopes a live. A loss would probably end their chances while a draw would also significantly hurt them. Birmingham City was middle of the table and safe from relegation heading into the match.” (The 90th Minute)

With 10 Men, Bayern Still Deposes Schalke

April 4, 2010

“Bayern Munich scored twice within two minutes and hung on with 10 men to beat Schalke and return to the top of the Bundesliga. Schalke started the match Saturday in first place but lost 2-1 at home after Franck Ribéry and Thomas Müller struck in the 25th and 26th minutes. Kevin Kuranyi cut the deficit in the 31st minute.” (NYT)