The Return of the Soccer Rioters

October 20, 2010

Charles Le Brun – Entry of Alexander into Babylon
“Last Tuesday, a riot broke out at a soccer game in Italy. Its perpetrators were a group of right-wing Serbs who had traveled to Genoa to watch their national team play Italy—or, as it turned out, not to watch it play, since the game was called off after just seven minutes. The Serbs threw burning flares onto the pitch and used a metal bar to try to smash the fence that separated them from the Italian supporters. A large, heavily tattooed man in a black ski mask climbed the Perspex barrier at the front of the stands and started slicing through the perimeter netting with wire cutters, pausing to give the occasional Nazi salute. As Italian riot police moved to surround the visitors, the Serbs set fire to an Albanian flag and unfurled a banner reading ‘Kosovo is Serbia.'” (Slate – Run of Play)

Bradley’s Lack of Commitment to New Tactics Deeply Concerning

October 20, 2010

“OK it’s been a week, and a rough week at that. The USMNT played Columbia last Tuesday, and I had planned to write my normal post-game, but after the match I was too furious to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard as it were). I decided to calm down for a few days, but then the weekend came, and I got to experience the worst sports weekend I can remember in my lifetime. Let me explain.” (Yanks are Coming)

Real Madrid 2-0 Milan: Early goals seal victory

October 20, 2010

“An enjoyable contest between the two most successful sides in the history of the European Cup ended in a comfortable won for Real. Real set out in a fairly standard 4-2-3-1 system. Cristiano Ronaldo played higher up the pitch on the left than Angel di Maria on the right, whilst Xabi Alonso and Sami Khedira alternated position, with Alonso generally further forward.” (Zonal Marking)

Real Madrid 2-0 AC Milan – Video Highlights, Recap, and Match Stats – Champions League
(The 90th Minute)

Arsenal 5-1 Shakhtar: stalemate turns into a rout
“Arsenal started slowly but ended up thrashing a Shakhtar Donetsk side who offered no attacking threat until the final ten minutes. Arsene Wenger recalled Cesc Fabregas and played him alongside Jack Wilshere and Alex Song, whilst Samir Nasri and Tomas Rosicky were preferred to Andrei Arshavin.” (Zonal Marking)

Arsenal 5-1 Shakhtar Donetsk – Video Highlights, Recap, and Match Stats – Champions League
(The 90th Minute)

Ajax 2 – 1 Auxerre: A false nine and a false nr. 10, but a true victory for Ajax
“The double confrontation with AJ Auxerre from France will be decisive on Ajax’ European Football campaign this season. Having faced world class teams Real Madrid and AC Milan in the first two matches, Ajax will have to defend a one point lead over Auxerre to hold onto the third place in Group G of the UEFA Champions League, and to qualify for the knockout stages of the Europa League.” (11 tegen 11)

Spartak Moscow 0-2 Chelsea: usual professional display from Ancelotti’s side
“Yuri Zhirkov’s stunning goal put Chelsea into a lead they never looked like giving up. Spartak fielded a 4-2-3-1 system, with Ari playing close to the main striker, Welliton. The two wide players stayed on their respective flanks for most of the first half but switched in the second. Ibson and Aleksandr Sheshukov played a loose double pivot, with a good understanding allowing each other to move across the pitch.” (Zonal Marking)

UEFA Champions League Video Highlights For Tuesday, October 19, 2010(The 90th Minute)

Why Wayne in White Would Be A Win Win Win

October 20, 2010

“If the average, cheese-brained, money-obsessed English footballer paid as much attention to becoming a better player as to the size of their bank balance, Ipod headphones and the press attaché’s tits then a heck of a lot more would have headed to the Spanish league in recent years than the brave few that have manfully taken the plunge in la Primera.” (Football 365)

Why isn’t Wayne Rooney the player we thought he’d become?
“Wayne Rooney is a force of nature: a natural, swaggering, street footballer who used to play the game with the reckless abandon of the best player in the playground and who made the dimensions of the pitch seem to shrink whenever he received the ball. He retains all of these qualities, despite his current loss of form, but he only really got the credit his talent deserved in England when he started scoring goals.” (Football Further)

Wayne Rooney’s arch adviser heads for another big pay day
“Wayne Rooney plays for England in a summer tournament, then returns to gory tabloid stories exposing his alleged weakness for prostitutes. Further stories soon follow, that he has fallen out with his Scottish disciplinarian manager and wants a transfer. The manager denies any falling out, but complains that, despite all his club have done for the ‘boy’, Rooney’s ‘advisers’ say he wants a move.” (Guardian)

Alex Ferguson is not always right
“It seems to be a truth universally acknowledged that, when in want of a new club, a footballer rarely gets the better of Alex Ferguson. The Manchester United manager, we are told, is the right man to send players on their way. He knows when to protect his players, when to discipline them and when to dispense with them. When a player looks set to leave Old Trafford we are fed the usual line, that Ferguson sells players when it suits him but not when it suits them. Well, Wayne Rooney might just be proving that theory wrong.” (WSC)