Screaming in their silence: Union Berlin fans deliver strong protest against RB Leipzig

September 28, 2014

ByDH1YkCEAEMQPt.jpg large
“As Sebastian Polter races towards goal and calmly slots the ball past RB Leipzig keeper Benjamin Bellot, close to 20,000 fans erupt in a cacophony of emotion at the Stadion An der Alte Försterei. Good has prevailed over evil, and order has been restored, if only temporarily. It’s a Sunday afternoon in September, and the 2. Bundesliga’s newest club has made the short two-hour trip to Berlin, sitting pretty atop the table, having gone unbeaten in its first five matches. Leipzig face an FC Union Berlin side lying firmly in the relegation zone after a winless start to their own 2014-15 campaign. The visitors are welcomed with a cold and hostile reception.” Bundesliga Fanatic


Rooney scores, gets ejected as Manchester United hangs on vs. West Ham

September 28, 2014

“Captain Wayne Rooney was sent off after scoring but 10-man Manchester United clung on to beat West Ham 2-1 in the Premier League on Saturday. It was just United’s second victory in seven matches under Louis van Gaal, coming a week after a humbling loss at newly-promoted Leicester. It had started well for Rooney when he put United in front after five minutes with a deft volley. Robin van Persie doubled the lead in the 22nd minute with his 50th goal for United, but West Ham pulled one back before halftime through Diafra Sakho’s header. The attacking trio of Rooney, Van Persie and Radamel Falcao combined well up front, until Rooney was sent off in the 59th minute for kicking out at Stewart Downing. At the back, United looked vulnerable once again, although injuries meant Van Gaal had to give 19-year-old center back Paddy McNair a debut. Of more concern to Van Gaal will be Rooney’s absence, which will last three matches if the dismissal is deemed to be violent conduct by the English Football Association.” SI (Video)

Premier League talking points: Wayne Rooney & a two-horse race
“Wayne Rooney’s red card for Manchester United will claim the headlines from an eventful Saturday in the Premier League. The United and England captain must now serve a three-game ban – but the good news for manager Louis van Gaal is that his 10 men held on for a crucial win against West Ham United to ease some of the wounds from the 5-3 collapse to Leicester City. This was among a number of key talking points from Saturday’s games. Here, we look at Rooney’s conduct and some of the day’s other significant incidents.” BBC


Brazil is having its ‘England’ moment

September 28, 2014

“This year was not the first time that England flopped in a World Cup in Brazil. The fall was even harder in 1950, when making its debut in the competition, England also failed to make it out of the group stage, this time going down 1-0 to United States, still one of the most remarkable results in World Cup history. Great winger Stanley Matthews was not selected for that game, and watched horrified from the stands. He was much more impressed by a trip to the newly built Maracana stadium to watch the hosts in action.” The World Game – Tim Vickery


Tactical Analysis | Liverpool 1-1 Everton: Balotelli sub-par, Lukaku misused

September 28, 2014

Liverpool-Everton-Tactics
“Liverpool 1-1 Everton | The Merseyside Derby is often an intense affair, topped off with an aggressive flavour and mixed with an air of resentment. This one at Anfield was thus a bit disappointing, with neither side catching the imagination and not allowing the usual narratives to flow. Though the headlines were made stunningly by both captains, the two sides failed to convince viewers and justify their ambitions for the season.” Outside of the Boot


Francesco Totti still providing eternal quality for his beloved Roma

September 28, 2014

“Francesco Totti had tears in his eyes as he lined up to face CSKA Moscow. The Champions League anthem had barely kicked in when television cameras picked out the Roma captain looking quite overcome. Three-and-a-half years removed from his last appearance in the competition, Totti had begun to wonder if he would ever get back here again. Never did he doubt that he belonged on such a stage. Totti turned 38 on Saturday, but remains as certain as ever of his own abilities. Asked on the eve of the CSKA game which teams in Europe would not want him in their starting XI, he replied: ‘Few of them’.” Guardian


Elite Force Is Back in Spain, Dominance Undiminished

September 28, 2014

Lionel Messi nets goal number 400 of his senior career. His teammate Neymar scores a hat trick. And Barcelona hits Granada for six. Cristiano Ronaldo takes his personal account to eight goals in one week with Real Madrid. Diego Simeone returns in full voice to the coaching area. His new striker, Mario Mandzukic, returns in a black mask nine days after fracturing his nose, and Atlético Madrid crushes Sevilla by four goals.” NY Times