Jérémy Menez – “A Frenchman Abroad”

“The mercurial Jeremy Menez is a player blessed with undisputed ability. With a blend of dexterity and pace, Menez has caused consternation among Serie A defences for three seasons. Deployed in either a wide berth or forward position, Menez has become a linchpin in the famed ‘Giallorosso’ jersey of AS Roma. Technical attributes aside, Menez has recently allowed peripheral club turmoil to blight his mood and dull his threat. A clash of characters with Roma’s temporary manager, Vincenzo Montella, saw Jeremy’s mood and form wane, while Roma’s hardcore tifosi duly became increasingly disenchanted with their man. And as last season expired, a prevailing disquiet suggested the Frenchman’s position was borderline untenable.” FFM


Uruguay 1-0 Mexico: Uruguay’s pressing leads to dominance, and progression to the knockouts

“Alvaro Pereira’s scrappy goal set up a quarter-final showdown with Argentina. Oscar Tabarez dropped Edinson Cavani and Martin Caceres, bringing in Alvaro Gonzalez and Cristian Rodriguez either side of a narrow 4-4-1-1, moving Alvaro Pereira to left-back. Luis Fernando Tena made one change, with Miguel Ponce replacing Javier Aquiano. Mexico also lined up in a broad 4-4-1-1 system, with Giovani dos Santos behind Rafael ‘Lugo’ Marquez.” Zonal Marking

Argentina’s Copa Begins In Earnest
“‘A new Copa has started’, Lionel Messi told the press after Monday night’s 3-0 win for Argentina against Costa Rica. Messi wasn’t in a press conference, or a mixed zone; he was picking up his man-of-the-match award. Normally he’d just stand for a couple of photos and leave with the gong, to answer questions outside, but he grabbed a microphone to thank ‘the people of Córdoba for how they’ve treated all of us, especially myself.'” In Bed With Maradona

The Prem’s most wanted players

“In term of transfers, football clubs seem to go through crazes. The January transfer window was all about strikers, with Fernando Torres, Andy Carroll, Edin Dzeko, Darren Bent and Luis Suarez all changing hands for more than 20 million pounds each. In fact, those five transfers contributed to 159 million pounds of the record 225 million spent by Premier League clubs in that month.” ESPN

West Bromwich Albion’s Risk Averse Strategy

“At one stage last season West Bromwich Albion seemed destined to be relegated from the top flight yet again, despite the sterling efforts of top scorer Peter Odemwingie and the tough tackling Youssouf Mulumbu, but a timely change of manager inspired a solid series of results in the last few months, culminating in the club’s best ever finishing position of 11th in the Premier League.” Swiss Ramble

A chance is a chance is a chance?

“Before we dive deep into soccermetrics territory to aim for a method to assign different value to different chances created during a football match, let’s take a big step back in time. Back to our early childhood, the school yard… I’m pretty sure that the majority of us have enjoyed playing marbles at that time. Not just the fun of playing the simple one-on-one game, but also the trickery trade that came with it. There were those guys (or girls) you looked up against, who always had the biggest and most shiny marbles of all, making your bunch look pale and insignificant.” 11 tegen 11