Why a South American experiment could be a boost to Europe

November 5, 2013

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“How can the prestige and profile of the Europa League be raised? A second cup competition always has the problem of being in the shadow of the first, like a consolation prize for those who have missed out on the main event. There is, though, a relatively simple means of improving things; use the prestige of the leading cup competition to help pull along the second. The winners of the 2014-15 Europa League will automatically qualify for the Champions League, giving clubs a powerful incentive to take the competition seriously and field their strongest sides.” BBC – Tim Vickery


Arsenal 2-0 Liverpool: Arsenal adapt well to Rodgers’ tactical decisions

November 5, 2013

“Arsenal triumphed in a fast-paced and tactically interesting contest. With Jack Wilshere and Mathieu Flamini out, Arsene Wenger had no real selection dilemmas. Brendan Rodgers continued with his 3-5-2 system, although was without both first-choice wing-backs, with Glen Johnson a late withdrawal – Jon Flanagan played instead. Arsenal were the better side – just about keeping Liverpool’s front two quiet, and dominating both centrally and down the flanks in possession.” Zonal Marking


The Beautiful Game Leads to a Beheading

November 5, 2013

“The field in Centro do Meio, Brazil, where two young men were killed after an altercation at a pick up soccer game last June. Late last week, Jeré Longman and Taylor Barnes of The New York Times relate one of the most chilling stories I have ever read in briliant, gory detail. This is a story of violence, poverty, anger and of course, soccer.” Soccer Politics


Thiago Motta thriving as an elite player at PSG

November 5, 2013

“It sounds ridiculous to suggest a player with two European Cup winners’ medals should regard the competition as unfinished business — but Paris Saint-Germain’s Brazilian midfielder Thiago Motta will be desperate to triumph in the competition for a third time. After all, while Motta has a variety of hard-earned medals — he’s won titles in three different countries — his European successes must feel rather hollow.” ESPN – Michael Cox