Daily Archives: December 14, 2011

Americans Abroad: Whitbread back for Norwich, eyes chance with U.S.

Zak Whitbread
“It would be easy for Zak Whitbread to look back at the last nine months and think about what could have been.With better-timed good health, the 27-year-old Norwich City center back may already be on his way to the international career that has yet to materialize. In the midst of helping the Canaries earn promotion to the Premier League last spring, Whitbread was called in for the United States’ friendlies against Argentina and Paraguay in March, only to be forced to withdraw with a back injury. Not only did he miss a chance to acclimate himself with the U.S. setup for the first time on the senior level, but he missed what would’ve essentially been a tryout for the U.S. Gold Cup roster.” SI

How effectively is Luis Enrique implementing the Barcelona methods at Roma?

“One of the more eye-catching managerial appointments this summer was former Barcelona B coach Luis Enrique taking over at Roma. It was a surprise appointment. Though Enrique had enjoyed success with Barcelona’s second string, he had no top-level coaching experience. He wasn’t really that much more qualified than Vincenzo Montella, who took over at Roma last season having previously worked in the youth system at the club.” Zonal Marking

Conquering the world

“It has been a busy few months for Barcelona, the European champions, making sure of their place in the knockout stage of the Champions League and taking the field in all their domestic games knowing that every point they drop makes it harder for them to retain their Spanish title. Then, of course, Pep Guardiola’s side won their most important match of the season so far, beating Real Madrid 3-1 in the Clasico.” ESPN – Tim Vickery

Violence Reigns In Paraguay

“Six games in 2011, four in just over a month, have been suspended in Paraguay due to crowd violence. The latest suspension came on last weekend’s crunch game between league leaders Libertad and title chasers Cerro Porteño, two points behind with three games to play. With Cerro Porteño leading one-nil at half time the players and officials came out ready for what was set to be a thrilling and potentially season-defining 45 minutes of football. But before the second half could begin a flare thrown from the Cerro Porteño end struck the linesman who had to leave the stadium in an ambulance.” In Bed With Maradona

El Clásico:Luis Figo

“Even before arriving in Spain, Luis Figo was at the heart of transfer controversy. Having unwittingly entered an agreement with Juventus in 1995 due to the influence of his club, Sporting Lisbon, an angered Figo then attempted to sign a contract with Parma. As a result, Figo was banned from transferring to an Italian club for two years, something he attributes to the influence of corrupt Juventus director Luciano Moggi. However, Barcelona came to the rescue with a bid of £2.25 million for the Portugal international.” TheFalse9

Home About Links Reviews Arsenal 1-0 Everton: Robin van Persie’s bolt from the blue gives Arsenal the win

“Sometimes, the textbook way isn’t always the right way. That’s what David Moyes and Everton found out and in the end, they were outdone by a stunning volley from Robin van Persie. The goal didn’t look like coming in the second-half – while Robin van Persie had one of his most ineffective games yet this season – and that was due to the turnaround in tactics by Moyes.” Arsenal Column

Brian Glanville on Lyon’s improbable Champions League qualification

“Seven goals scored and consequent qualification in the European Cup for a Lyon team which until then had found scoring in the group so difficult. True, Dynamo did have a man sent off in the first half, but seven goals? Michel Platini, ever more controversial and disappointing President of UEFA, seems airily unconcerned, reassured it would seem, by the fact that there was no sign of unusual betting at the bookmakers.” World Soccer