love football,wish my point of view or argument would make enough sense towards whom they may concern...i`m from the caribbean so cricket is also a passion.have cable t.v so watchin the nba is a must... real madrid is the club i support,i prefer la liga to the epl,doesnt mean i wont watch it or hav an opinion.serie A i follow as well..
how are you my friend. Still hot over here (I mean the temperature)
Not heard from you for a long time my friend!
Barca has played 12 league games so far. That is more than 30% of the games. So my take on what we have been discussing during the transfer window has kind of come correct and other points have been not so good.
I wanted that Barca
1. Sell Cesc, that would have been a big mistake,
2. Sell Piques that would have been good,
3. Keep Sanchez (despite all the Barca fans wanting him sold). Good decision Barca!
4. Sell Valdes, but he is having a fantastic season. Financially Barca will lose though.
5. Sell Villa (although I like the player), and it was a good decision,
6. Sell Tiago and it looks like it was a good decision,
7. Not buy a defender and give the youngsters more playing time and I feel that Batra has stepped up.
8. Come to an agreement with Tito to step down and it did happen and the transition seems to have been smooth.
And finally although I wanted Barca to purchase Higuain and Agüero, when the club decided on Neymar I was confident that the kid will do well and he and Sanchez have taken a lot of responsibilities from Messi.
I predict that towards the end of the season Messi will come good. I feel that Tata is tactically using Neymar, Sanchez, Cesc and Pedro effectively and winning games even without Messi scoring,
Do you agree?
Yes agree that it will be either Manchester City or Chelsea who might win the EPL. Arsenal would need a lot of luck, but they should qualify for the Champions league. I have a feeling that Manchester United might not qualify for the Champions league this season (unless they win it and get the 4th spot like Chelsea did a few years ago). I predict that Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool / Tottenham will represent England in the UCL next season.
I think that at the moment RM’s problem is not who will keep the goal. Ancelotti needs to be given more time. But will he? Read the below links.
The EPL has several teams that could win the title. Arsenal is on a roll now, but will they be in the same position as now in January 2014? I hope they do, but …..
Regarding RM, I don’t think that a shootout will be the main problem this session because in my opinion it will not come down to that.
Below is an interesting article about the RM’s finical position. I hope they sort it out.
Agree with your logic that Juve will need to take risks. Milan will have to take risks as well at the San Siro. But because both Barca and RM face each other and that game will be crucial for both sides (RM & Barca), just maybe both Juve and Milan can take a different tact and probably be successful.
When the group was drawn my initial thinking was that Marseille would be the easy beats. Although I kind of support Arsenal in the EPL, I agree that they are one loss away from a huge collapse. Also agree that the head to heads in the group will play a crucial on whom of Arsenal, Dortmund or Napoli will progress, I have a feeling that Dortmund will beat Arsenal at the Emirates (just a feeling no logic). Will see! haha.
Napoli will need Higuain fit and soon to be competitive.
The teams that have impressed me at the UCL so far are (and in that order): Bayern, Arsenal, AM and PSG. What were the four teams that impressed you most?
RM, Dortmund (the loss in Napoli was with 10 men so it was expected) and Barca in my opinion haven’t has yet played a strong UCL opposition.
I think to qualify for the round of 16 a second place team might need 8+ points if all 4 teams are competitive or +10 points if 3 teams are competitive. So RS to qualify all 4 teams would have to be competitive. Hence RS might need all 6 points against Man United. It is possible as Man U is having an inconsistent season too, but the odds would be pretty high if I was a betting man (ie the likelihood of RS qualifying would be quite low IMO).
AM is already in the round of 16, so are Barca and RM. unless some dramatic events occur.
The maximum points Gala can get would be 6 against Copenhagen, 3 against RM in Madrid and 3 against Juve in Istanbul.
Gala will likely get the 6 points against Copenhagen, but cannot see them getting the 3 against RM in Madrid (maximum they might be able to squeeze is a point). So leaving out the Gala v Juve tie, Gala could get 7 + (1?) (ie 6 against Copenhagen and the 1 they got against Juve and the (1?) against RM) points and whatever against Juve. Juve currently has 2 points and meets Copenhagen at home, which should take them to 5 points. So if Juve can beat RM once (ie 8 points) and not lose to Gala in Istanbul, Juve should qualify.
The Milan situation is a little more complex. If Celtic or Aiax win both of the next head to head ties. Celtic will have 6 points or Aiax would have 7 points. Milan currently has 4 points. Aiax and Milan have met each other 11 times so far and they have beaten each other 4 times and drawn 3 times. Historically Aiax plays better against Milan in Milan (ie they have beaten Milan twice and lost twice, the last time Aiax beat Milan in Milan was 8th December 2010). Celtic historically has a bad head to head against Milan (Celtic has lost 3 times, drawn 3 times and won once). If
1) Aiax was to get 6 points against Celtic then Milan will need 4 points against Barca (the other point is that Barca may draw with Aiax in Amsterdam, because the clubs have a close relationship as Barca may choose not to play the best players in Amsterdam).
2) Aiax gets only 4 points against Celtic, and then Milan will need 3 points against Barca.
3) Celtic gets 6 points against Aiax then Milan will need 3 points against Barca.
4) Celtic gets 4 points against Aiax then Milan will need a point against Barca
To make things more interesting just after next UCL games RM visits Barca at the Camp Nou. I would assume that both RM and Barca would take the clasico more seriously than the next UCL round as both have the maximum number of points and leading their respective groups. If Barca can win and get to an 8 point lead the title would be in one hand. So it is possible that both RM and Barca might draw their next UCL. Group matches. Barca is away and RM is at home. Barca has 4 days free before the clasico, where as RM has only 3 days. Surely Milan and Juve will try to exploit the situation.
FYI, Juve has a very good head to head against RM and has knocked out RM several times (even won in Madrid).
I have watched both Barca and RM this season and I am convinced that they will both need to play a lot better or improve a lot to go past the round of 16. Out of the Spanish teams AM has impressed me, but do they have the depth in the squad to get to the Semis or even the finals? I don’t think so, but Dortmund did it last year with a lean squad.
Still believe that an Italian team will win the UCL this season. Arsenal might be the dark horse??
Statistically the future champion has a slow start in the group stages and must lose at least one game in the group stages.
So who do you think will qualify out of Arsenal, Dortmund and Napoli? I think that Dortmund will top the group. But don’t know who will come second.
AM was the better team. They could have lead 3:0, but when they didn’t I expected RM to score more than 1 goal and win. It will be interesting to see if AM can keep up the good work. I think that their squad is not strong enough to compete in laliga, UCL and the copa, Time will tell. I hope they do well.
I have a feeling that AM will lose with Porto (because they would have given there all at the Santiago Bernabel). Barca will draw with Celtic (unless Neymar shows some magic), RS will lose to Leverkusen and RM will win by a 4 goal or more difference.
I hope that Perez gives Ancelotti more time than he gave Pellegrini. With time and patience Ancelotti will get better results than MOU with RM.
FIFA has decided human error, corruption or bad decision making is acceptable. Bottom line is that the Refs have to be given the tools to do their job.
I didn’t expect AM to win today. What is your view?
Long time no see my friend!
Disagree with all those comments about the Elche v RM tie. Errors or injustice or even corruption will occur in matches if video ref is not allowed. I feel sorry for the fans that would have paid 100’s of euros to watch the match to leave the stadium feeling the ref decided the outcome. One cannot compare the Barca v Seville match to the Elche v RM as the penalty was awarded to RM on the 90 +6 minute. So Elche didn’t have time for a comeback. With the Barca v Seville match even if that valid Seville goal was given in the first half, Barca would have won. Probably the goal difference might have even been even greater for Barca. The match ended up 3:2 because Barca took their leg out of the accelerator after the 75th minute when the result was 3:0.
You might recall that I stated that RM and Barca both needed significant changes. RM has made those changes. Maybe they need to sell another 3 more players from the old guard. If they do I am convinced that you will win the UCL in the next 3 years. Out of your new signings I see Isco scoring more than CR7 soon. I think that Isco was an excellent purchase.
Coming from a statistical background British players don’t do well when playing in the continent. Of the 100’s of British players, who moved to other European leagues only a handful has succeeded in their new clubs in the continent. I don’t think that Bale will be one of them who succeeded overseas.
On current form the RM v AM tie should be a good tie, but from a stats perspective RM should win easily. From past games unless RM and AM meet around round 16 or later RM always win both ties.
Your points about Messi not being fit and the high pressing issue are valid but part of the story IMO and I am not in any way blaming Tito for the 4:0 lost at Munich.
Below is my thinking:
My point is when Tito was kind of healthy in the beginning of last season (ie up to 31 of December 2012), Barca had a phenomenal season. In effect Barca won laliga in the first half of the season!
Once Tito got sick, Roura was struggling to repeat the results from the first half of the season. IMO the turning point was not the defeat to Real Sociedad away in January, but the draw at the Santiago Bernabel in the Copa Del Rey tie against a RM without several first team players. After that with Roura we lost to Milan 2:0 with less than 10 shots on goal and lost to RM 1:3 the second tie at the Camp Nou of the Copa del rey, at this point I was thinking Roura was having difficulty with managing the team. And for the first time I realized that my previous thinking that anybody could manage this Barca team was proven to be false and IMO we had the proof that both Pep and Tito did an excellent job with Barca. After we knocking out Milan at the Camp Nou, I assumed that maybe it was the February sickness (Barca and RM statistically are known to have issues in February). The 2:2 against PSG was a good result, but when Barca was helpless at the Camp Nou, I felt that maybe Barca was playing for a 0:0 result, but when PSG went 1:0 up I knew that something was not right and it wasn’t the players. We somehow qualified and when we landed Bayern for the semis you might recall I predicted that the UCL final will be Bayern v Dortmund. You also might recall I also did predict that Barca will not win the tie against Bayern at the Camp Nou. At this point I was convinced there was a problem with Barca (ie Tito’s health).
You also might recall that I wanted Barca to play RM in the UCL semis. At that time I was suspecting that Tito might not be fully fit and it would be easier for him to plan and play against a known opponent like RM rather than Dortmund or Bayern (Because Barca don’t play them regularly).
In the first 15 minutes of the tie at the Allianz Arena in Munich, when Bayern should have had two clear penalties but with a half time result of 1:0 to Bayern, I expected at least 2 substitutes for the second half as in real terms we should have been 3:0 down. You might recall very early in the second half we were 2:0 down and then 3:0 and 4:0 around the 80th minute. If you have a copy of the game you would see Tito concentrated but blank with ideas standing and watching the game pass by from around the 60th minute (ie if you can read body language). This is when I was convinced that Tito was sick.
Again you might recall that I wrote in May that Tito and Barca should come to an agreement and Tito should get more treatment and step down as Barca Manager.
Over the two ties though Bayern was the better team and deserved to knock out Barca. But say if we had for instance Pep on the bench, I somehow think that the result would have been different even with an injured Messi.
I agree with your view on Higuain for last season and the season before etc, but I think that he will mature this season and I believe a good Higuain is better than a good Benzema. A good Higuain in my opinion could play in the Messi or CR7 level, whereas a good Benzema IMO cannot ever play in the Messi or CR7 level.
I think that it is risky to make decisions on players who are in a squad, because a team with an excellent squad can produce pretty ordinary results and never win anything. The squad is part of the story but not the full one. Trophies are a better measure of looking at the clubs performance (the full story) and it needs to be looked over a period of time to get an accurate picture. Eg last season we didn’t win any competitive tie against RM (ie out the 4 games: 2 laliga games and 2 copa games) but we won 1 important trophy where as RM didn’t win any. How could one explain that scenario, without analysing long term trends, some might call it luck or bad luck, don’t think so haha.