“Camus’ aphorism, often misquoted as ‘what I know most surely about morality…I learned from football’, is a favourite of high-brow fans of sport and t-shirt printers everywhere. It is, of course, a reference to his experiences playing in goal for the RUA, the Algiers Racing University football team, and the Montpensier Sports Club. He started playing for them at the age of fifteen and quickly made a good impression. Jonathan Wilson’s beautiful book on ‘keeping, The Outsider, the title of which is surely a conscious echo of Camus’ novel, describes in detail some of his recollections of playing. He was praised for his bravery and his abilities in goal, and was even once knocked out taking a powerful shot straight to the chest, a forewarning of the tuberculosis that would force him to hang up his gloves and, from that point on, only participate in football as a spectator.” Put Niels In Goal
“We all like free flowing football right? It’s fun seeing teams express themselves on the ball and do stuff that make your jaw drop; whether it be against a set defense and a team making intricate passes to bypass them (See: Arsenal, Bayern, Man City), or a wild counter attack that tattles the line of functional chaos and rips apart the souls of their opposition (See: Dortmund, Crystal Palace, PSV). Defense is fun and there’s a special place for defensive steel, but in the end we’re some form of degenerates on the inside that love bucket loads of goals. … Now what if I said that there was a team that was averaging a goal scoring rate better than the likes of Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid, Manchester City and it’s not a traditional super power, and they play in France as well. No seriously, it’s OGC Nice from Ligue 1. They’re scoring goals for fun this season through a fun mixture of possession football and counter attacks focused on capitalizing individualistic moments. The form Nice are on is equivalent to playing FIFA online against an overmatched opponent and they’re scoring goals for the fun of it.” Stats Bomb (Video)
“Judging the calibre of a young player is often a tricky task. Perceived potential has an important bearing in any consideration and is just one of the many parameters to consider when trying to quantify the ability of football’s young stars. To add a basis to what may be a leap of faith, it is useful to look back and trace the growth, or indeed lack thereof, in young players.” Outside of the Boot
“Yet another dramatic week in Europe’s major leagues saw pressure increase on Jose Mourinho, while there were hat tricks for some of the continent’s big-name players, like Barcelona’s Luis Suarez and Borussia Dortmund’s in-form Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Bayern Munich might have found a successor to Pep Guardiola, while there was a dramatic return of the ex in Italy.” SI
“More than ever, the cold hard financial reality of dropping out of the Premier League is firmly at the forefront of club owners’ minds, so it is relatively unsurprising to see Tim Sherwood flung onto the managerial scrapheap alongside Dick Advocaat. Both men hit a simple goal after coming in late on last season- to survive- and both oversaw a terrible run of results at the start of 2015-16. That’s the crux here, throughout the history of the game results have been the fundamental currency for measuring success and underlying metrics and strategies run a distant second to losing six straight and eight of ten when gauging a manager’s survival chances. Sherwood’s season win percentage was closer to none than second to none and that was that.” Stats Bomb
“Klopp would have liked an easier opponent for his Premier League debut. Not that Southampton are one of the most in-form teams in the moment; but Koeman’s side have become one of the league’s most uncomfortable opponents. This clash has the potential to be much trickier for the Reds than it may appear on a first glance.” Tomkins Times
“Arsenal have had a very indifferent start to their Champions League campaign, losing their opening two games. Doing that means that you need to pick up points against the third team, a simple enough task if the third team isn’t Bayern Munich. Having said that, Arsenal too came into this game in great form, with Sanchez and Ozil in great form. of course, Lewandowski and co. were looking intimidating as always, and that just set the stage for an epic clash.” Outside of the Boot.