Race, Language and Symbolism

November 2, 2011

William Blake – Los Painting
“I begin with a basic and ironic premise: when dealing with racism, we too often think in terms of black & white. No, not black people and white people, but rather innocence/guilt, right/wrong, good/evil. The most dangerous aspect of evil is its ability to snuff out empathy, even for its own evil bad-ass self. These past few weeks, we’ve seen instances of Spanish-language players, Luis Suarez and Cesc Fabregas, allegedly uttering racist insults. Yet I ask—do our Anglo racial linguistic norms really offer the right and only lens by which to judge them?” Run of Play


Tactics: the formation that cost Inter coach his job

November 2, 2011

“A 3-1 defeat at promoted Novara brought a swift end to Gian Piero Gasperini’s three-month reign as coach of Internazionale, and the day after he was sacked the 53-year-old was in belligerent mood. ‘I know that results determine everything,’ he said. ‘Inter knew that my system was 3-4-3. It is not that I do not know another system, but I believe that with this one the team I coach play better. I explained this to Inter’s chiefs three times when I spoke with them. I believe that the controversy about the formation was used as an excuse [to sack me]. If Inter did not believe in my work, why did they sign me?’” World Soccer – Jonathan Wilson

The APOEL miracle continues…

November 2, 2011

“The clear outsider in a very strong group coming into the tournament, APOEL now find themselves top of Group G after a 2-1 win over Porto. There was an element of fortune to their victory over Porto last night. Having deservedly got themselves into a 1-0 lead, they were content to sit on that slender advantage going into the final minutes. A rash challenge and a Hulk penalty later, they look like they’d blown their chance. But APOEL showed character to get up the pitch and score a 90th minute to clinch the win.” Zonal Marking

APOEL Nicosia have justified Michel Platini’s decision to revamp the Champions League
“In the rather obscure village of Mosfiloti on the island of Cyprus, probably the last thing you would expect to find is a shrine to Michel Platini. While the lengths that supporters go in their adoration of football legends is no secret, the Maradonian Church the prime example, the ‘House of Platini’ – part restaurant, part museum and part one man obsession with the former Juventus midfielder – in a village with a population of roughly 1500 residents, is just plain random.” World Soccer

Derby County’s American Dream

November 2, 2011

Theo Robinson
“In the notoriously competitive Championship it is perhaps unsurprising that so many clubs lose patience with their managers in their eagerness, almost desperation, to reach the promised land of the Premier League. Indeed, four have already exited stage left this season, including two former England managers in the form of Sven Göran Eriksson and Steve McClaren. So, when Derby County’s board extended Nigel Clough’s contract until 2015, it somehow seemed more extraordinary than the customary news of another manager’s sacking.” Swiss Ramble

WBA 0 Liverpool 2: In-Depth Tactical Analysis

November 2, 2011

“West Bromwich Albion won last season’s meeting between the two teams 2-1, ending their sequence of nine straight defeats without a goal against Liverpool. It meant that last season Roy Hodgson won both Liverpool-West Brom games – one with each team. This game however was closer to the long-term trend, and was also only the second time that Liverpool have won back-to-back Premier League matches away from home since September 2009.” The Tomkins Times

Eduardo fails to track Igor Denisov, and Zenit get the upper hand in important victory

November 2, 2011

“After such an exciting first game between these two sides, the return match was something of a disappointment. The match essentially revolved around a single key battle in the centre of the pitch. Zenit are usually 4-3-3 with one midfielder in the holding role, whilst Shakhtar generally line up 4-2-3-1. As in the first game, the midfield triangles were set to match each other. Mircua Lucescu sprung a slight surprise in his side, though, with the use of Eduardo in the centre of the pitch, in support of Luiz Adriano. Eduardo has usually been used either on the flank or as the centre-forward – this was the first time he’d been used as a central player in the attacking band of three, with Willian and Alex Teixeira in the wide positions.” Zonal Marking