Real beats Getafe, Barcelona draws

September 10, 2011


“Real Madrid seized an early advantage in the Spanish league by beating Getafe 4-2 on Saturday after Barcelona squandered an early lead to draw 2-2 at Real Sociedad. Madrid striker Karim Benzema and Getafe’s Nicolas “Miku” Fedor scored in an evenly matched first half at Santiago Bernabeu stadium.” SI

Barca held, Madrid win
“Barcelona were pegged back from two goals ahead as Real Sociedad snatched a superb and deserved 2-2 draw at the Estadio de Anoeta. Two goals in as many minutes from Xavi and Cesc Fabregas put Barca 2-0 up inside the opening quarter-hour and they appeared to be cruising, but Imanol Agirretxe’s header changed all that and Antoine Griezmann netted a bizarre equaliser – making good on his pre-match promise to prove his commitment to the club after the collapse of his longed-for summer move to Atletico Madrid.” ESPN


Stoke City 1 – 0 Liverpool

September 10, 2011

“Liverpool stumbled over a familiar hurdle at the Britannia Stadium as they slipped to their first defeat of the season. In four visits to Stoke since the Potters earned promotion to the Premier League, the Reds have collected just two points and lost their last two matches. Not since 1968 have Stoke recorded back-to-back home league wins over Liverpool and the result brought a side brimming with confidence before the international break back down to earth with a hefty bump.” ESPN

Stoke City record valuable victory over wasteful Liverpool
“After a start to the season that took them to the top of the table for the first time in two years, there had been growing talk of Liverpool having developed into genuine title contenders. But at a ground that has consistently proved to be a graveyard of success for the club came the feeling that even at this earliest of stages, their championship hopes may just have died a little.” Guardian


The long and winding road

September 10, 2011

“In kicking off its season with a single match on a Friday evening, as if the start could not come soon enough after the first round of fixtures were postponed because of a players’ strike, the Lega Serie A displayed the kind of awkward creativity borne out of a crisis that seems to run in the Italian blood.” ESPN

Milan 2-2 Lazio: danger down the flanks
“The opening Serie A game of the season was excellent, with all four goals coming in a frantic first 35 minutes. Max Allegri continued with his 4-3-1-2 shape, with Antonio Cassano playing just off Zlatan Ibrahimovic upfront. Edy Reja gave debuts to two strikers, Miroslav Klose and Djibril Cisse, though the Frenchman played in a wide-left role. It was a similar, lopsided 4-2-3-1 to the system Lazio used last season. The main tactical interest here was how obviously vulnerable both teams were in certain positions – and, as it happened, they were both vulnerable in exactly the same ways, despite the difference in formations.” Zonal Marking