Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

OT Soccer Thread, v.2019

Looks like the last thread is closed, so onto the new!

Upcoming Matches of Interest
2/3 Madrid Derby
2/4 Manchester City v. Arsenal
2/10 Manchester City v. Chelsea
2/12 Manchester United v. PSG
2/13 Tottenham v. Dortmund
2/19 Liverpool v. Bayern Munich
2/24 Manchester United v. Liverpool
2/28 Chelsea v. Tottenham
3/2 North London Derby, Merseyside Derby, & El Classico
3/5 Dortmund v. Tottenham
3/9 Arsenal v. Manchester United
3/13 Bayern Munich v. Liverpool
3/16 Manchester Derby
3/30 Liverpool v. Tottenham

The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: January 30, 2019 at 07:08 PM | 2068 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: soccer

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

Page 8 of 21 pages ‹ First  < 6 7 8 9 10 >  Last ›
   701. J. Sosa Posted: March 15, 2019 at 07:20 AM (#5822953)
That’ll do pig.
   702. J. Sosa Posted: March 15, 2019 at 07:22 AM (#5822954)
United vs Barca

Spurs vs City

Ajax vs Juventus

Liverpool vs Porto

Semis

United or Barca va Liverpool or Porto

Ajax or Juventus vs City or Spurs
   703. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: March 15, 2019 at 07:59 AM (#5822958)
That's as good a draw as you could have hoped for Liverpool. If they don't make at least the semis it'll be a major disappointment and they should have a solid shot against Barca (or a good shot against Manchester United if OGS's pixie dust holds out through the quarterfinals).

So lets go United (ugh), Spurs, Ajax, and Liverpool!
   704. J. Sosa Posted: March 15, 2019 at 08:17 AM (#5822960)
Yep, could not have gone better. Have to play the matches of course, but Robertson’s suspension is for home leg and if they win have home leg second match for semi. Also on other side of bracket from Juve and City, the two teams I most wanted to avoid.

Napoli vs Arsenal

Villareal vs Valencia

Benfica vs Frankfurt

Prague vs Chelsea
   705. J. Sosa Posted: March 15, 2019 at 08:26 AM (#5822961)
Semis Arsenal or Napoli vs winners of Villareal vs Valencia

Benfica or Frankfurt vs Prague or Chelsea
   706. spivey Posted: March 15, 2019 at 08:42 AM (#5822963)
Drawing City is very annoying. They're the best team, and they're also not a sexy matchup. After the second leg against Barca I actually felt we had a way better chance against them than City. I'd give Liverpool some stick for drawing Porto two years in a row, but they took on City in the QFs last year and took on Bayern last round, so it's not all been easy for them.
   707. spivey Posted: March 15, 2019 at 08:43 AM (#5822965)
Arsenal/Napoli should be pretty good fun though. Really all of the EL ties look good except Chelsea/Prague, but hey, they just beat Sevilla.
   708. J. Sosa Posted: March 15, 2019 at 08:45 AM (#5822966)
I am going to have to buy some Spurs merch. Will be the biggest fan alive starting in April.
   709. The_Ex Posted: March 15, 2019 at 09:05 AM (#5822969)
The top 4 favorites in the CL missed each other. The semis could be very interesting.
   710. jmurph Posted: March 15, 2019 at 09:10 AM (#5822971)
That's as good a draw as you could have hoped for Liverpool.

This could come back to haunt me of course, but the Ajax/Juventus potential semi-final draw seems obviously more desirable than Barcelona to me.
   711. spivey Posted: March 15, 2019 at 09:18 AM (#5822973)
This could come back to haunt me of course, but the Ajax/Juventus potential semi-final draw seems obviously more desirable than Barcelona to me.


Agreed. Not that it is likely to matter for Tottenham.
   712. jmurph Posted: March 15, 2019 at 09:29 AM (#5822976)
Agreed. Not that it is likely to matter for Tottenham.

I was just quibbling with the point that the draw couldn't have gone better for Liverpool, I think they got the easier quarterfinal matchup but a pretty tough semifinal.

As for Spurs/City, they will play each other 3 times in 12 days. I will be stunned if City win all 3, though of course that doesn't preclude them from winning the overall tie.
   713. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 15, 2019 at 10:26 AM (#5822985)
All CL ties this round have the favorite as a heavy favorite (80% or so), with Liverpool even higher. In Europa, there are two almost toss-ups (Napoli/Arsenal and Benfica/Frankfurt), one with a smallish favorite (Valencia/Villa), and the longest odds left in Europe (Chelsea/Prague).
   714. J. Sosa Posted: March 15, 2019 at 10:35 AM (#5822986)
I think 538 had it at 85 percent for Liverpool.

I am happy with Barca for a potential semi. I want no part of Juve/Heysel and all that would go along with that. If you are City, sure Juve probably looks better. But not for a lot of LFC fans.
   715. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 15, 2019 at 10:41 AM (#5822988)
Chelsea got a very favorable draw. Not only do they face Prague, the two next favored teams square off against each other, on the other side of the bracket. Their odds of winning the CL are now in the low/mid 30s, which is not really that much lower than getting a top 4 spot in the EPL (mid 40s). Even one slip up in the EPL and their route through Europa becomes easier.
   716. Jose is Absurdly Unemployed Posted: March 15, 2019 at 10:44 AM (#5822989)
If you are Liverpool and can only win one of the two titles which would you rather have; EPL or CL?
   717. J. Sosa Posted: March 15, 2019 at 10:50 AM (#5822991)
It is PL no question. If they finally got rid of the league curse it would be CL.

Klopp seems to be betting heavily on fixture congestion tripping up City. He got the most criticism I have ever seen him receive from Liverpool fans following the Everton game. He played that match for a draw. We will see. Personally I feel better about CL chances than PL. I think 538 has the reverse. One in four for CL and 1 in three for PL.
   718. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 15, 2019 at 10:52 AM (#5822993)
I'm not qualified to answer that, but I will note that Liverpool is actually in a somewhat similar situation to Chelsea. They are given about an 18% chance to win the CL, and about a 28% chance to win the EPL. Just one or two slip-ups in the EPL, and their chances of winning the CL would likely be higher.
   719. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: March 15, 2019 at 12:06 PM (#5823015)
I'd probably want the Champions League title over the PL one, but winning the PL would be a nice monkey off Liverpool's back.

Really, though, I'm greedy. Do the double, damnit.
   720. spivey Posted: March 15, 2019 at 12:10 PM (#5823019)
Not a Liverpool fan, but if it were Tottenham, I'd want the league. League titles in a top league are just way harder and a better sign of quality IMO, especially the English league right now which is as good as it's been in 10 years. CL is nice if you have a league title or two under your belt.
   721. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: March 15, 2019 at 12:33 PM (#5823027)
Ugh ... City ... Blargh.

Last team I wanted in the draw, utterly and absolutely the last.

On any given day? Sure Spurs could win, but over 2 legs? No.

Loved to be proved wrong, but I'm pretty ####### sure I won't be.

Meh.
   722. spivey Posted: March 15, 2019 at 12:40 PM (#5823029)
Agreed, Spurs just really don't match up well with City. But, to make a deep run they were going to have to probably face City and/or Liverpool both. So, let's go.

The only silver lining is I think Spurs' best 11 hasn't really played together much all season, and I think they should hopefully be somewhat refreshed going into the stretch run here. Midfield is still going to be a real issue vs City, but we'll have DESK and we will have all of our CBs which we've rarely had together this year.
   723. OPS+ Posted: March 15, 2019 at 02:31 PM (#5823053)
Spurs will face City April 9th, 17th, and 20th. That's a rough stretch.
   724. J. Sosa Posted: March 15, 2019 at 02:54 PM (#5823061)
Give em hell!!!

City has Spurs, Palace, Spurs, Spurs, United. That’s the title right there. Get through that stretch will all the points and it won’t matter what Liverpool do. Liverpool have Porto, Chelsea, Porto, Cardiff. If they don’t gain ground in that stretch it is pretty much over.
   725. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 15, 2019 at 04:27 PM (#5823077)
CL and EL QF betting odds (538 in parens):

Liverpool: 81% (85%)
City: 80% (80%)
Juve: 78% (60%. the only outlier. 538 loves Ajax and dislikes Juve)
Barca: 76% (77%)

Chelsea: 86% (95%. 538 still hates Prague)
Valencia: 61% (64%)
Napoli: 54% (53%)
Frankfurt 52% (48%)



   726. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 16, 2019 at 10:38 AM (#5823126)
Sheffield United with the huge, possibly undeserved, win away to Leeds. Now the small favorite over Leeds to take the second automatic promotion spot. Still quite a few games left, and they could both pass Norwich.
   727. Richard Posted: March 16, 2019 at 11:22 AM (#5823140)
Undeserved? Leeds didn't have a shot on target, and the Blades would have had a second but for the red card challenge.

Huge win in the most exciting division in English football.
   728. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 16, 2019 at 12:13 PM (#5823150)
Undeserved may be the wrong word. "Quite fortunate"? I didn't see a minute of the game, but I just looked at the highlights. Leeds had more quality chances (according to the highlights, one of which hit squarely off the woodwork), a higher xG (1.5 to 1.0, according to 538, which doesn't give anything for the extra time challenge of course), and a much higher non-shot xG (2.2 to 0.9, according to 538). A draw wouldn't have been too much of a fortunate result, considering how the game seems to have been played, based on my limited knowledge of it, but a win for Sheffield sure seems to have been.

A win is a win of course.
   729. spivey Posted: March 16, 2019 at 01:52 PM (#5823163)
I love that Swansea is not afraid to play total football against City. Oh and they’re up 2-0 on the back of one of the best team goals you’ll see.
   730. I am going to be Frank Posted: March 16, 2019 at 02:08 PM (#5823164)
Burnley managed to lose to Leicester who were playing down a man five minutes in.

I still think City wins this, but that was pretty impressive half by Swansea.
   731. spivey Posted: March 16, 2019 at 03:00 PM (#5823174)
Hell of a game. Not sure about that pen, and then ridiculous luck for how it was converted
   732. spivey Posted: March 16, 2019 at 03:02 PM (#5823175)
This is one of the most exciting games I’ve watched all year
   733. spivey Posted: March 16, 2019 at 03:08 PM (#5823176)
It’s a shame that Swansea went down on a couple of goals that were of dubious legality
   734. spivey Posted: March 16, 2019 at 03:14 PM (#5823177)
Also VAR would have been used if it was a premier league ground. This is stupid
   735. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 16, 2019 at 03:17 PM (#5823178)
I think Manchester United and maybe Wolves are just good enough to beat Manchester City on a good day. I'm less sanguine about Watford's chances. So this game this afternoon is pretty important.

Then again, Swansea almost pulled it off, so I guess you never know.
   736. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 16, 2019 at 03:25 PM (#5823179)
Dortmund looks like they got another late winner... in another game they dominated. Staying alive in the Bundesliga race!
   737. frannyzoo Posted: March 16, 2019 at 05:43 PM (#5823207)
Must admit the past two hours at Molineux are among my most enjoyed in quite some time. Push come to shove, I still hate ManU and Wolves, well, Portugal is the best, isn't it?
   738. spivey Posted: March 16, 2019 at 06:01 PM (#5823211)
Wolves really play to the level of their opponents. Hopefully they get City in the final. That'd be a fun game.
   739. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: March 16, 2019 at 06:03 PM (#5823212)
I still hate ManU and Wolves


I get the antipathy for United, but why about Wolves? (Not a challenge, just that orange and black is great colour scheme, I love their icon, and they play a good, smart, pleasant game, what am I missing?)
   740. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 16, 2019 at 07:12 PM (#5823217)
I get the antipathy for United, but why about Wolves? (Not a challenge, just that orange and black is great colour scheme, I love their icon, and they play a good, smart, pleasant game, what am I missing?)


Good: yes
Smart: definitely
Pleasant: eye of the beholder and all, but no.

I thought OGS was badly outcoached today. United were only the better team for the first 20-30 minutes, and then only marginally. Most of the time during that period neither team really threatened at all, so being better wasn't likely to yield a lead. Wolves played exactly their game, so no surprises there, but United couldn't do anything about it despite having the better talent overall. I can't claim to know what they should have done differently, but they did exactly what Wolves wanted them to do, which was try to play through a densely packed deep-lying defense on the ground while leaving themselves open to the counter.

Color me skeptical that this approach has much hope against Pep's City. They are very disciplined and patient and generally much more solid at the back than United. They've also badly beaten Wolves overall in the two games this year, though they managed a 1-1 draw in Wolverhampton in the earlier game. At home they simply slaughtered Wolves 2.7 to 0.1 in xG (by understat it was even higher: 3.1 to 0.1).

I'm thinking a domestic treble now has a very high chance to succeed (certainly over 50%). The quadruple is still unlikely of course.


   741. Richard Posted: March 16, 2019 at 07:34 PM (#5823220)
Undeserved may be the wrong word. "Quite fortunate"? I didn't see a minute of the game, but I just looked at the highlights. Leeds had more quality chances (according to the highlights, one of which hit squarely off the woodwork), a higher xG (1.5 to 1.0, according to 538, which doesn't give anything for the extra time challenge of course), and a much higher non-shot xG (2.2 to 0.9, according to 538). A draw wouldn't have been too much of a fortunate result, considering how the game seems to have been played, based on my limited knowledge of it, but a win for Sheffield sure seems to have been.

A win is a win of course.


Ah, you didn't watch the game. I did.
   742. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 16, 2019 at 08:19 PM (#5823226)
ok. So you would be better served not using misleading stats like "no shots on target" in this particular game to make your point (Sheffield United only had one shot on target, and was outshot 17 to 10, and Leeds also hit the woodwork on a big chance). Possession was 70/30 for Leeds. xG, non-shot xG, passes completed, virtually every stat, and also the highlights, favored Leeds.

Because I'm generous, I'm willing to say a draw would not have been much of a fortunate outcome for Sheffield United. "I watched the game" and especially "no shots on target" is no argument that Sheffield was not fortunate in getting a victory under these circumstances.
   743. frannyzoo Posted: March 16, 2019 at 08:55 PM (#5823229)
I get the antipathy for United, but why about Wolves?


See, this is why commas are important. Should have written it as:

Push come to shove, I still hate ManU, and Wolves, well, Portugal is the best, isn't it?

Because I rather like Wolves and have for years. Even before all the Portugal. Sorry for the lack of comma.
   744. J. Sosa Posted: March 16, 2019 at 09:59 PM (#5823235)
With respect Bea, that post wasn’t a good look. The post doesn’t in any way acknowledge Richard’s point regarding the red card for starters. This type of analysis has many flaws, not least of which is game state/table state. Richard’s been around the game locally in Sheffield since the eighties at least IRRC, and is a level headed knowledgeable dude. A Holiday Innish pointing to xG and the highlights for scoreboard for what would be at best be a marginal quibble, ehhhh.

My two unsolicited bits. Have a good one.
   745. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 16, 2019 at 11:29 PM (#5823247)
Red card is in my post ("extra time challenge"). Interesting that you think my summary of events is the more flawed.
   746. Jose is Absurdly Unemployed Posted: March 17, 2019 at 11:54 AM (#5823266)
Holy #### the last few minutes of the Liverpool game have been madness.
   747. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: March 17, 2019 at 11:54 AM (#5823267)
Man, Fulham had looked great from about 10 minutes into the second half, and then bail out a flailing Liverpool with one of the dumbest penalties I've ever seen.

e: and that's after an absolutely astonishing combined howler from Van Djik and Alisson allowed Fulham to pull level.
   748. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 17, 2019 at 01:47 PM (#5823279)
Manchester city is going to win the FA cup (probably). They will have faced a very weak run of opposition:

Rotherham (relegation threatened in the Championship)
Burnley (relegation threatened in the EPL, but probably better than that in the second half to be fair)
Newport County (4th tier)
Swansea (midtable in the championship)
Brighton (relegation threatened in the EPL)
Watford or Wolves

Manchester United had a pretty easy run in 2015-2016, but they had to beat West Ham, Everton and Palace, which was at least a little more challenging at that time. Chelsea in 2009-2010 had an easy run too, with the best team they faced being 6th placed Villa. They also faced EPL midtable Stoke and haplessly relegated EPL Portsmouth in the final.

I didn't look back any further, but this competition is at par or worse with any faced by an FA cup winner, but not way weaker at least. Of course, this City team is much better than your average FA cup winner (if they win it of course), so in combination it's pretty extreme.

edit: on the other side of the coin, this Watford/Wolves tie could be quite interesting.


   749. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 17, 2019 at 02:36 PM (#5823291)
Chelsea's betting odds of winning Europa are now very slightly higher than their betting odds of Top 4. It's basically considered about 1 in 3 for each.
   750. manchestermets Posted: March 17, 2019 at 06:45 PM (#5823336)
Messi is ridiculous.
   751. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: March 17, 2019 at 07:12 PM (#5823340)
That third Messi goal. No words. How do you even contemplate trying that, let alone pull it off?
   752. Sean Forman Posted: March 18, 2019 at 02:51 PM (#5823550)
Almost as good as Dempsey versus Juve.
   753. spivey Posted: March 18, 2019 at 03:05 PM (#5823553)
Suarez had a ridiculous outside of his boot chip towards the end of his godlike Liverpool season that was probably the most absurd goal attempt I've ever seen that hit the post.

But I tried to find it and couldn't. Hopefully someone knows what I'm talking about.
   754. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: March 18, 2019 at 03:10 PM (#5823555)
That third Messi goal. No words.


Of course, when Messi did that to him, he did something few footballers can do. If most other footballers attempt that shot, the goalkeeper ends up simply catching it; either that, or the ball drifts harmlessly over the bar. But Messi is obviously nothing like most, if any, of his peers. The chip requires mastery of three specific techniques -- spin, precision and disguise -- and Messi simultaneously summoned them all.

If you watch that goal again, which of course you should, you will see at the instant of impact that Messi had his head bowed, with no indication as to what he would do next. He had cleared the ball for flight, an air-traffic controller plotting its path through the heavens. He then applied the spin -- my God, the spin! -- slicing his foot beneath the ball at such speed that the motion must have cut the surrounding grass. And, of course, the ball, with the glorious inevitability of our slowly dying sun, rose and fell.

Across the Universe, all sentient creatures knew what they had seen. The supervillain Thanos, now resting in his garden at the edge of creation, glanced mournfully upward and lamented: "Dread him. ... Run from him. ... Messi still arrives." The home crowd at Betis, though opposed to Messi, made a gesture of the most moving beauty: They rose to their feet in applause, chanting his name. It's never an easy thing to do when it's your beloved team on the receiving end, but they had to acknowledge the majesty they'd witnessed with their own eyes.

They did it because Messi transcends.

"To transcend" -- a verb defined by the Merriam-Webster Dictionary as "to rise above, or go beyond the limits of." During that passage of play, Messi transcended football.

He was truly a thing to witness.
   755. KronicFatigue Posted: March 18, 2019 at 06:36 PM (#5823588)
Who are the best players who don't have an absolute lock for a starting position on their clubs?
   756. Jose is Absurdly Unemployed Posted: March 18, 2019 at 06:55 PM (#5823592)
THat's a good question and one I'll be interested in seeing the answer to from those more knowledgable than me. My gut reaction was going to be "Man City's second team" and frankly Mahrez and Jesus (12 and 16 substitute appearances respectively) are probably a pretty good starting point.

One other name, I'm not sure if it's changed but Paco Alcacer was leading the Bundesliga in goals for awhile despite coming off the bench every week.
   757. aberg Posted: March 18, 2019 at 07:27 PM (#5823598)
Who are the best players who don't have an absolute lock for a starting position on their clubs?


Real Madrid's lineup is up in the air right now, but if you consider the Solari version, then Isco, Bale, Marcelo probably qualify. If it's Zidane's lineup, maybe Courtois?

One of Barca's MF- Arthur, Vidal, Busquets, Rakitic- is not a regular. Same with Dembele/Coutinho.

Diego Costa hasn't started as much since Morata got to Atleti.
   758. Mefisto Posted: March 18, 2019 at 08:01 PM (#5823604)
If you can find a video of the reactions to Messi's goal, the ones by the Betis players are priceless.
   759. Richard Posted: March 19, 2019 at 01:47 AM (#5823635)
I didn't look back any further, but this competition is at par or worse with any faced by an FA cup winner, but not way weaker at least. Of course, this City team is much better than your average FA cup winner (if they win it of course), so in combination it's pretty extreme.


This puts me in mind of Liverpool's 1992 run (the season before the PL started)

Won 4-0 at Crewe (6th, 4th tier)
Won 2-1 at home to Bristol Rovers (13th, 2nd tier) after a 1-1 draw away
Won 3-2 at home to Ipswich (1st, 2nd tier) after a 0-0 draw away
Won 1-0 at home to Aston Villa (7th, top tier)
Won on penalties v Portsmouth (9th, second tier) after a 1-1 and 0-0 draws
Won 2-0 in the final vs Sunderland (18th, 2nd tier)

They only played 1 top division side. Sunderland are the second worst ranked team in terms of league position to reach the Cup Final since World War 2(Leicester, who finished 19th in division 2 in 1949, were the worst). I am not sure that anyone has had an easier run in terms of ranking of opposition since the Cup assumed its current form in the 1920s.

On the flip side, Man Utd were drawn against a top division side in all six rounds when they won it in 1948.
   760. Richard Posted: March 19, 2019 at 01:51 AM (#5823636)
With respect Bea, that post wasn’t a good look. The post doesn’t in any way acknowledge Richard’s point regarding the red card for starters. This type of analysis has many flaws, not least of which is game state/table state. Richard’s been around the game locally in Sheffield since the eighties at least IRRC, and is a level headed knowledgeable dude. A Holiday Innish pointing to xG and the highlights for scoreboard for what would be at best be a marginal quibble, ehhhh.

My two unsolicited bits. Have a good one.


Kind words.

Also relevant, regardless of what xG may say, are the goals conceded by Sheffield United in the previous 6 games: 0,0,0,0,0 and 0. One of the reasons Leeds had no shots on target is that they didn't get room or time from an execellent defence.
   761. spivey Posted: March 19, 2019 at 09:16 AM (#5823643)
Best guy without a locked in position is a good question.

I don't watch a ton of La Liga but I get the sense Dembele is pretty much the unquestioned starter over Coutinho there, though they rotate as a fair number of teams do (edit: it looks like Coutinho has more league minutes, although I think this sentence may still be true based on standing today, I think Dembele is getting more minutes in each of theirs preferred position, too). Similarly, I've not seen Vidal a ton this year, though I had gotten the sense with age and injury he wasn't nearly the player he was 4 years ago when he was maybe the best central mid in the world. Coutinho is interesting because he has world class talent, was Liverpool's best player, but has struggled to break into Barca and Liverpool has been better without him. He's great at scoring goals outside the box, but I don't love a lot of the other parts of his game. Not as much pace as I'd want from a winger, and I don't think he has the pressing/physicality/engine to play in the middle 3 band of a 4-3-3.

In the EPL, which I watch more, I think it's some of City's players. They've rotated their front a decent amount actually this year, so I don't even entirely know what Pep's preferred starting 11 is right now. But Sane was on the bench for a huge part of the first half of the season. He's playing a lot of games now, but if KdB and Fernandinho were healthy, he'd get more healthy scratches I think (with Bernardo taking some of his minutes at the wing). Gundo is another good one, and I think at this stage in their careers I'd rather have him than Vidal.

Fabinho started the second leg of the Bayern tie on the bench, and I think is one of the best defensive mids in the world, at least on the early form I've seen from him.
   762. Mefisto Posted: March 19, 2019 at 10:14 AM (#5823663)
If you count United under Mourinho, the answer is Pogba. If we include keepers, how about Romero? And Ter Stegen doesn't get many minutes for Germany (if national teams count).
   763. jmurph Posted: March 19, 2019 at 10:16 AM (#5823665)
In the EPL, which I watch more, I think it's some of City's players. They've rotated their front a decent amount actually this year, so I don't even entirely know what Pep's preferred starting 11 is right now. But Sane was on the bench for a huge part of the first half of the season. He's playing a lot of games now, but if KdB and Fernandinho were healthy, he'd get more healthy scratches I think (with Bernardo taking some of his minutes at the wing). Gundo is another good one, and I think at this stage in their careers I'd rather have him than Vidal.

Yeah Sane is the guy for me, and maybe Jesus as referenced above. Bernardo Silva has just really blown up this year, though, so I think the Sane thing makes sense to some degree.
   764. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 19, 2019 at 02:51 PM (#5823808)
Sheffield United's first 31 games: GA 34, xGA 26 (0.84 xGA per game); last 7 games: GA 0, xGA 6 (.86 xGA per game).
   765. ckash Posted: March 19, 2019 at 08:59 PM (#5823908)
My daughter makes me watch all the Barca matches. Dembele and Vidal have started way more league games lately.
   766. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: March 26, 2019 at 06:41 AM (#5825285)
England to file complaint after Rose, Hudson-Odoi racially abused in Montenegro

Wheeeeee!

From the Graun:

Ultimately, though, this occasion will be added to the list of England’s foreign assignments where the memories of what happened on the pitch are offset by the noises that came off it. One of the more depressing parts is that the Montenegro coach, Ljubisa Tumbakovic, said he was completely unaware of the monkey chanting and his media officer tried to shout down questions on the subject by saying nobody else had heard it either. Yet Southgate did. Sterling felt compelled to hold out his ears, having scored England’s fifth goal, and the backdrop noise was even more blatant in stoppage time when Danny Rose was booked for a free-kick. The FA will make a complaint to Uefa but to witness these moments, to hear the photographers’ accounts from directly in front of the stand, was to be reminded that European football’s governing body has never taken this problem seriously enough. Uefa is part of the problem, not the solution.

   767. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: March 26, 2019 at 08:11 AM (#5825291)
Man, #### racist fans and especially #### their enablers.
   768. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: March 26, 2019 at 10:12 AM (#5825337)
The really sad thing is how entirely predictable it was. Nobody has ever confused any place in former Yugoslavia with a progressive and tolerant society.

If you look at some of the comments from the England team, even before the game, regarding the potential "atmosphere" it is completely clear that they knew what they were walking into. Everybody knew. And yet nobody did anything about it in advance. This was a game, where there should have been a plan set up beforehand. With the home team and the supporters being put on alert. And at the first hint of any trouble, you drop the hammer. Because fuck 'em.

In general I thought the England players handled it really well. Sterling was clearly a bit agitated early on, you could tell from his body language towards the referee. But hard to say if that was from the crowd nonsense, or because Montenegro was largely allowed to ugly up the game quite a bit, and Sterling got more than his fair share of hacks. Probably a combination of both. But overall, they should be commended for rising above the bullshit.
   769. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: March 26, 2019 at 08:09 PM (#5825600)
Omar Gonzalez?

PULISIC!!!!
   770. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: March 26, 2019 at 08:40 PM (#5825609)
McKennie last game ... Pulisic this game?

Ugh. I hate international breaks ...
   771. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: March 26, 2019 at 11:28 PM (#5825636)
Former Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal says Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's tactics are similar to Jose Mourinho's and the only difference is that the Norwegian is winning.

Solskjaer has been praised for implementing a more attacking style of football since taking the reins at Old Trafford in December, but Van Gaal, sacked by United in 2016, said that is not the case.

"The coach after me [Mourinho] changed to park-the-bus tactics and played on the counter," Van Gaal told the BBC.

"Now there is another coach who parks the bus and plays on the counter. The main difference between Mourinho and Solskjaer is that Solskjaer is winning.

"The way Manchester United are playing now is not the way Ferguson played. It is defensive, counter-attacking football. If you like it, you like it. If you think it is more exciting than my boring attacking, OK. But it is not my truth.


Well, to be fair, that *is* one way to put it ...
   772. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: March 26, 2019 at 11:50 PM (#5825640)
And, to be fair, it is refreshing to hear Van Gaal admit that his United teams were "boring attacking". More coaches should be so open ...
   773. manchestermets Posted: March 27, 2019 at 06:36 AM (#5825652)
Well, he got the boring part right, the first season of Mourinho was like a breath of fresh air. I'm certain that whoever it was that came up with that Simpsons clip of soccer had only ever watched Van Gaal teams play.
   774. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: March 27, 2019 at 03:32 PM (#5825819)
   775. Baldrick Posted: March 27, 2019 at 08:42 PM (#5825932)
Women's Champions League semifinals set:
Lyon v. Chelsea
Barca v. Bayern

Lyon is (by leaps and bounds) the team to beat. They've won the last three and have what is probably the single best women's soccer team assembled in the history of the sport. But the other three are strong teams, and (in the case of Barca and Bayern) represent a new wave of engagement and investment from some of the big clubs of the world. The Barca team in particular looks like it could be a year or two away from truly taking off. Should be some exciting games.
   776. manchestermets Posted: March 28, 2019 at 05:48 AM (#5825970)
Three year contract for Solskjaer.
   777. Mefisto Posted: March 28, 2019 at 08:42 AM (#5825981)
Color me dubious.
   778. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: March 30, 2019 at 05:42 AM (#5826986)
Probably, but at least the players seem to enjoy playing for him and with that and ZZ back at Real, it might mean the English press will STFU about Poch leaving for the summer ... mostly. Of course, there will still be Toby and Christian, so they've got *that* going for them ...
   779. Mefisto Posted: March 30, 2019 at 09:10 AM (#5826992)
Yeah, Spurs fans should feel very good right now.
   780. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 30, 2019 at 12:46 PM (#5827026)
Huddersfield currently would be the second earliest team relegated (by calendar date... too lazy to look up games played/remaining) by a single day to mighty Derby. Only second team to be relegated in March.

Bayern dominated again but could only manage a draw. Dortmund got the late win. Probably Bayern is still favored to win the Bundesliga, but it must be close to 50/50 now. That game next week in Munich is huge--Dortmund would be very happy with a draw.
   781. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 30, 2019 at 01:14 PM (#5827033)
Manchester United looked awfully shaky at home, but they still managed to have all the biggest chances until the late consolation goal by Watford. With Wolves also losing and Leicester winning, the race for 7th is tightening again, and you can add the winner of the Everton/West Ham game to the mix (if there is no draw). Of course, maybe Watford or Wolves will pull off a win over Manchester City in the FA Cup final making it all moot. Nah.

Terrible day for Cardiff, with all their relegation rivals winning except Brighton who played Southampton. With Burnley playing well, I think Cardiff is toast unless they can pull off a few surprises while Brighton (and possibly Burnley) get some bad breaks. It's not very likely--they still have to play 4 of the top 6. They do have Brighton and Burnley though, so wins in one or both could give them a fighting chance.

Sheffield United gave up 3 goals today at home, and now are on the outside looking in for the auto promotion slot. Still plenty of time for that to change of course.
   782. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: March 31, 2019 at 11:27 AM (#5827178)
Don't think this will be a happy day for Spurs ...
   783. Dromedary pretzels, only half a dinar (CoB). Posted: March 31, 2019 at 01:32 PM (#5827194)
Don't think this will be a happy day for Spurs ...


Spurs didn't let me down ...
   784. spivey Posted: March 31, 2019 at 01:39 PM (#5827195)
I guess the silver lining is Spurs didn't get run off the pitch like many teams have been at Anfield. Hell, if you don't count the Toby OG, Spurs actually won xG.

What the #### was Lloris doing on that, by the way? You have to ####### catch that Salah header. I expect a college keeper to catch that.
   785. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: March 31, 2019 at 02:02 PM (#5827205)
I'd be a little surprised if Manchester City ended up with fewer than 94 points, and they're going to beat Liverpool on GD. If so, Liverpool can't lose again and can draw at most once.
   786. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: March 31, 2019 at 04:08 PM (#5827232)
Bayern dominated again but could only manage a draw. Dortmund got the late win. Probably Bayern is still favored to win the Bundesliga, but it must be close to 50/50 now. That game next week in Munich is huge--Dortmund would be very happy with a draw.

The Dortmund goal that put them up 1 in the 91st minute, was probably the worst free kick I have ever seen actually go in (as a direct shot anyway, maybe not counting mishit crosses that drifted so far off course that they ended in the top corner). It was pretty much straight down the middle, right at the keeper, chest height... I would expect to save a shot like that with my eyes closed. How a professional keeper flubbed it is beyond me.
   787. Sean Forman Posted: April 01, 2019 at 12:51 AM (#5827310)
I'd be a little surprised if Manchester City ended up with fewer than 94 points, and they're going to beat Liverpool on GD. If so, Liverpool can't lose again and can draw at most once.


City have SO MANY MATCHES to play. They've got FA cup matches, and FA cup makeups and champions league. I'd feel much more confident if they had a Fernandinho clone they could slide in. On the flip side of that, they've gotten almost nothing from KDB this year, so a hot run in from him would help a lot.
   788. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: April 01, 2019 at 09:39 AM (#5827333)
If they advance over Tottenham in the FA cup, it will be 2 games a week for the next 6 weeks. (7 league games, plus 4 CL + Brighton in the FA cup. That's effectively maxed out and will be quite challenging). Still, City is very, very good and it will be late in the year for some of their opposition.

Liverpool will have 10 games if they advance over Porto. Since they only have one this week, after this week it would be 9 in 5 weeks for Liverpool versus 10 in 5 weeks for City.
   789. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: April 01, 2019 at 11:48 AM (#5827401)
Chelsea looked very poor for the first 60 minutes against Cardiff, but poured it on at the end and were the far better team on the day as a whole. Of course, the equalizer never should have counted because Azpilicueta was way offside. I also don't think excuses for the linesman are at all in order here. Yes, it can be a more difficult call when a player comes back from an offside position, but there was nothing special about this play that made it a difficult call--the cross came in as expected, and the flick on wasn't unusual. The linesman was seemingly completely unaware of where the offensive players were, despite the defensive line barely moving. It's a very bad error.

I'm quite sympathetic to the linesman on plays where, for example, there is a fast counterattack and it's very difficult for the linesman to keep up with (and keep an eye on) the last defender while looking over his shoulder to see what is happening with the ball, i.e. when it is being played and who to. Tight offsides calls on plays like this are very hard to get right without video. The play in the Chelsea game was nothing like that. The linesman must have been in excellent position starting with the cross, and could easily see the whole play happening in front of him. He was also way offside. It was just a terrible error.
   790. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: April 01, 2019 at 05:02 PM (#5827633)
Arsenal now is in third place in the league and have a favorable schedule--no more top 6 opponents. Not as easy as you might think though, because they only have 2 home games left out of 7, and they have to face probably the 7-11 best teams in the league, 4 on the road. (7-11 not necessarily in this order: Wolves, Leicester, Everton, Palace, Watford.)
   791. Mefisto Posted: April 01, 2019 at 07:07 PM (#5827660)
Still a better schedule than United, who have to play Spurs and City on the road.
   792. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: April 01, 2019 at 08:42 PM (#5827688)
United do not have an easy schedule, and odds are Pep's City will beat them convincingly. That said, they actually have City and Chelsea both at home. (And they don't play Spurs.)

Top 4 betting odds (538 in parens):

Arsenal 65% (67)
Tottenham 60% (60)
United: 44.5% (33)
Chelsea: 30.5% (40)



   793. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Fred Posted: April 01, 2019 at 08:51 PM (#5827691)
What do the 7-11 teams have to play for?
   794. Mefisto Posted: April 01, 2019 at 09:30 PM (#5827705)
Oops. I was close. I knew their schedule was hard. Let's leave it at that.
   795. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: April 02, 2019 at 12:50 AM (#5827759)
What do the 7-11 teams have to play for?
I'm not familiar enough with the EPL to know, historically. Eyeballing xG the last 4 years, the best midtable teams haven't fared that well over the last 6-7 games in the last couple years, probably not much better, if at all, as any of the other teams outside the top 6 on average. In the two years prior they seem to have fared a little better.

One other way to check is to look at betting odds against something like 538, which doesn't know what teams have left to play for. Eyeballing these odds over the next couple weeks' games there is no obvious evidence that there is an effect, though perhaps there are still too many weeks left. Of course, it's a bit of an apples to oranges comparison, but the main point is if there were a huge effect you'd expect to see it in the betting odds.

Wolves home to United: about what 538 predicted.
Watford home to Fulham: betting odds like Watford in this game much better than 538
Palace away to Tottenham: pretty much even with 538.
Leicester away to Huddersfield: betting odds likes Leicester much more than 538 does
Palace away to Newcastle: pretty much even with 538
Everton home to Arsenal: betting odds likes Everton better than 538 does
Leicester home to Newcastle: betting odds likes Leicester slightly better than 538 does
Everton away to Fulham: betting odds likes Everton better than 538 does
Wolves away to Southampton: betting odds likes Wolves slightly better than 538 does
Palace home to City: betting odds likes Palace less than 538 does.
Watford home to Arsenal: betting odds likes Watford slightly less than 538 does.

   796. manchestermets Posted: April 02, 2019 at 05:58 AM (#5827762)
What do the 7-11 teams have to play for?


Money. mainly. There is a considerable financial reward for clubs per place - something like £2 million. Also, depending how results in other competitions fall I think there's an outside chance of the club finishing 7th qualifying for the Europa League - I think this would require Chelsea or Arsenal to finish outside the top 4 but win the Europa League.
   797. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: April 02, 2019 at 09:32 AM (#5827779)
Actually 7th is very likely to be a Europa spot this year. Good breakdown here.

The short of it is that the three Europa slots go to league 5th, FA Cup winner and League Cup winner. Since City has already won the League Cup and will go the CL, 6th also gets a slot. If City goes on to win the FA Cup, then 7th gets a slot as well. If not, the FA cup winner is the third Europa team.

One more wrinkle. If EPL teams outside the top 4 win both CL and EL this year, both still go to the CL with the 4th place EPL team going to the EL. Ok it's unlikely but not at all impossible, considering it could fairly easily happen to Arsenal or Chelsea in the EL. You'd have to also then have United or Tottenham winning the CL at the same time while also finishing outside the top 4. Rough odds of this all happening have to be much less than 1 in 100.
   798. manchestermets Posted: April 02, 2019 at 11:23 AM (#5827833)
It seems there's a rule change I wasn't aware of - previously, if the FA Cup winners also qualified for the CL, the runners up used to get the EL spot but this changed a few years ago - this might be the first time it makes a difference, as I think FA Cup runners-up in recent years have also qualified for the CL anyway. So yeah, if city win the FA Cup 7th spot is in the EL.
   799. DCA Posted: April 02, 2019 at 01:58 PM (#5827896)
Perhaps dumb question: what happens if a non-top-flight team wins the cup? E.g. if Milwall or Swansea went all the way instead of losing in the quarters. Do they go to Europa league or is that slot given instead to the next-best-placed PL team?
   800. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: April 02, 2019 at 02:44 PM (#5827916)
Unless they changed a rule that I am aware of, they still get to play in Europa. Though it doesn't happen often. Wigan won in '13 and were relegated the same season, and played the following season in Europa as a championship team.

Before that, I think you have to go back to 1980 West Ham, who won as a team in the old second division, and played the following season in the much missed Cup Winners Cup.

Though I think you possibly cannot go into Europe as a non-league team though. Would have to double check that.

ETA: Yeah, pretty sure that is right. Though the last (and only) time that happened, appears to have been in 1901, with everyone here's favourite team Tottenham Hotspurs lifting the FA cup as a member of the Southern League. (insert witty aside about long title drought here)
Page 8 of 21 pages ‹ First  < 6 7 8 9 10 >  Last ›

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Harveys Wallbangers
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogBarry Zito reveals why he rooted against Giants in 2010 World Series
(46 - 3:01pm, Sep 17)
Last: JAHV

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-17-2019
(20 - 2:59pm, Sep 17)
Last: Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant

NewsblogCarl Yastrzemski's Grandson Mike to Make Fenway Park Debut
(13 - 2:55pm, Sep 17)
Last: Bote Man

NewsblogOT - Catch-All Pop Culture Extravaganza (September 2019)
(176 - 2:51pm, Sep 17)
Last: chisoxcollector

NewsblogTigers lose 104th game, move closer to first overall pick
(38 - 2:48pm, Sep 17)
Last: Dog on the sidewalk has an ugly bracelet

NewsblogThe Yankees Will Play by Their Own Pitching Rules in October
(17 - 2:42pm, Sep 17)
Last: snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster)

NewsblogOT - NBA thread (Playoffs through off-season)
(6740 - 2:37pm, Sep 17)
Last: jmurph

NewsblogOT Soccer Thread - A New Season is Upon Baldrick
(801 - 2:35pm, Sep 17)
Last: spivey

NewsblogOT - 2019 NFL thread
(26 - 2:19pm, Sep 17)
Last: jmurph

NewsblogHail and farewell to football games played on baseball dirt
(73 - 2:16pm, Sep 17)
Last: Manny Coon

NewsblogMariano Rivera gets nation’s highest civilian honor | NJ.com
(30 - 2:11pm, Sep 17)
Last: jmurph

NewsblogDOES DAVE STIEB DESERVE ANOTHER CHANCE AT THE HALL OF FAME?
(66 - 1:55pm, Sep 17)
Last: Ithaca2323

NewsblogMLB Power Rankings: Just how good are the Twins?
(9 - 1:47pm, Sep 17)
Last: Cris E

NewsblogNew bowl game at Fenway Park to match teams from ACC, AAC
(8 - 12:37pm, Sep 17)
Last: Dolf Lucky

Gonfalon CubsApproaching the Finish Line
(37 - 12:15pm, Sep 17)
Last: bunyon

Page rendered in 0.7710 seconds
46 querie(s) executed