What Liga MX and MLS must do to make the expanded Leagues Cup a success

September 30, 2021


“For years, MLS has tried to substantially grow its fanbase. The league has expanded rapidly, constructed fabulous new stadiums, made strides in youth development, thrown resources into marketing efforts and shuffled between different broadcasters. The work has paid dividends in attendance in many markets, massively raised the valuations of every club and attracted a growing number of deep-pocketed, motivated owners, but it hasn’t made MLS all that popular nationally. Still, MLS is on an upward trajectory. …”
The Athletic


Freiburg’s fond farewell to the Dreisamstadion

September 30, 2021


Freiburg’s Dreisamstadion is one of Germany’s most iconic football grounds
“On 26 September 2021, Freiburg played their 360th and final Bundesliga game at the iconic Dreisamstadion, running out comfortable 3-0 winners against Augsburg. It was a fitting way to say farewell to their home of the last 66 years. Before the match, Freiburg head coach Christian Streich had declared that the sense of nostalgia surrounding the club’s final home outing was perfectly understandable, but that it had no place in his dressing room. He and the players weren’t thinking about it, hadn’t really discussed it – they were too busy preparing for a “complicated game” against an Augsburg side who had just got the better of Borussia Mönchengladbach. …”
Bundesliga (Video)
W – SC Freiburg


Chelsea’s loss at Juve illustrates the challenges Tuchel faces in fighting for titles domestically and abroad

September 30, 2021


Leonardo Bonucci in action for Juventus against Sampdoria.
“Thomas Tuchel probably didn’t need a reminder of the difficulty in competing on two fronts this season, but Manchester City and now Juventus have given him just that in the space of five days. The chaotic circumstances surrounding his arrival at Stamford Bridge in January — replacing fan favourite Frank Lampard and thrust straight into a condensed schedule made more unrelenting by COVID-19’s impact — created a degree of breathing space in the Premier League that helped propel them to Champions League glory. Tuchel was of course under a degree of pressure to secure a top-four spot last term, but he harnessed that rarest of things under owner Roman Abramovich — a sense of freedom arising from lowered expectations — to galvanise this group to an improbable European success. The dynamic is different this time. …”
ESPN
Guardian: Tuchel and Chelsea are failing to capitalise on Lukaku’s specific threat
YouTube: Juventus vs. Chelsea: Extended Highlights, Bayern München vs. Dynamo Kyiv: Extended Highlights, Zenit vs. Malmö: Extended Highlights, Atalanta vs. Young Boys: Extended Highlights, Benfica vs. Barcelona: Extended Highlights, Wolfsburg vs. Sevilla: Extended Highlights


In One Moment, Messi and P.S.G. Make It All Work

September 30, 2021


“Lionel Messi picked the ball up in that spot, the one that has served as the starting point for so many of his finest moments, the one that he knows so well that it might as well be his spot. It has, for 15 years, been his base camp, his happy place: a few yards inside from the right touchline, a few yards from halfway. He was standing still as he controlled it. He had been standing still for some time, by that stage. Paris St.-Germain had taken an early lead, through Idrissa Gueye, and had spent most of the rest of the game desperately trying to fend off Manchester City’s unrelenting attacks. …”
NY Times