A momentous match for football in Berlin

September 17, 2010

“Today, Germany’s second level Zweite Liga stages what is regarded as the first ever Berlin derby between Union and Hertha. (Strictly speaking there were fixtures in 1949-50 with one of Union’s previous incarnations, called Oberschöneweide.) ‘Hertha were talking about being German champions a year ago,’ says Union spokesman Christian Arbeit, ‘and now they are with us in the second division’. It’s 21 years since the Wall came down, but Union have been forging their own bit of history out to the east of the city in Köpenick.” (WSC)


Liverpool 4 – 1 Steaua Bucuresti

September 17, 2010

“Midfielder Joe Cole scored the quickest European goal in Liverpool’s illustrious history to set his under-strength side up for a 4-1 victory over Steaua Bucharest at Anfield. The England international took just 25 seconds of their opening Europa League Group K match to find the net for his first strike since joining on a free transfer from Chelsea in the summer.” (ESPN)

Liverpool 4-1 Steaua Bucharest: A Flattering Scoreline For A Faltering Liverpool B Team
“Perhaps more than most sports, football excels in creating and sustaining clichés. A game of two halves doesn’t tell the whole story of Liverpool’s match against Steaua, but it’s pretty damn accurate. We take a look at the game in more detail and consider why things changed so dramatically after half time. Liverpool began the game in a 4-2-3-1 formation which featured multiple changes from the Birmingham match.” (Micro LFC)

Liverpool 4-1 Steaua Bucharest – Video Highlights, Recap, and Match Stats – Europa League – 16 September 2010
(The 90th Minute)

Real Madrid 2 – 0 Ajax : Big Real makes Ajax look very small

September 17, 2010

“Ajax’much awaited return to the Champions League turned out to be a big deception in their first Group Stage match against the stars of Real Madrid. Although the final 2-0 score-line made it look like a football match, it was in fact a very one-sided affair. Real dominated all areas of the pitch, creating an impressive number of 33 goal-scoring chances and if it was not for Maarten Stekelenburg’s excellent goalkeeping, Ajax would never have come away with only two goals conceded.” (11 tegen 11)

6 things you may not know about MSK Zilina

September 17, 2010

“With the Champions League opener drawing near, it seems only fair to cover the team I glossed over in my main Champions League preview piece. After hours of trawling through many Slovakian websites (some not exactly kosher to my eye) and some Champions League highlights, let me attempt to give Chelsea fans the low-down on their unknown away day to the home of the Slovakian League Champions.” (6 Pointer)

Bayern 2-0 Roma: Ranieri’s side show shocking lack of ambition

September 17, 2010

“Bayern dominated the game from start to finish, but it took a superb Thomas Müller goal to break the deadlock. Bayern lined up in their usual 4-2-3-1 shape. Hamit Altintop started on the left in the absence of Franck Ribery, whilst Ivica Olic was the lone forward. Roma played a conservative, narrow 4-4-2 formation with Francesco Totti and Marco Borriello upfront. Aleandro Rosi made a rare start at right-back, so Marco Cassetti played on the left. Matteo Brighi was used in a right-sided midfield role.” (Zonal Marking)

The Way We Were: Aston Villa vs Everton, November 1989

September 17, 2010

“Watching repeats of old football matches can be an unsettling experience at times. Watch any match over around thirty years old and everything looks and feels different. The levels of technical expertise and fitness may be lower than they used to be, and the look and feel of the spectacle of the match is strangely other-worldly. At what point, however, did this change? When did what we could describe as the modernisation of football begin? I was reminded of this the other evening whilst watching the semi-final match in the 1984 European Championship between France & Portugal.” (twohundredpercent)

James Richardson’s Champions League newspaper review

September 17, 2010

“Cometh the hour, cometh the man … James Richardson returns for a new weekly look at all things football across the continent (Guardian – James Richardson)