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Friday, March 01, 2013

OT: The Soccer Thread, March 2013

Update your bookmarks, it’s the soccer thread.

Football hipster word of the month: Catenaccio
THTF news: Two months of fixture hell begin in which Spursin’ it up becomes all too possible
Shooty news: He’s decided to follow Real Zaragoza, because that’s totally not a hipster choice
Hamburglar / French Freiburg news: I still find both puns funny.  Monthly updates to follow
News news: I am now done with the bit.

Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: March 01, 2013 at 05:02 PM | 800 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: off-topic, soccer

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   101. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 04, 2013 at 03:43 PM (#4380351)
Man City: Hart, Zabaleta, Toure, Nastasic, Clichy, Javi Garcia, Rodwell, Milner, Toure, Silva, Tevez.

Man City's lineup today is weirdly negative, relative to a standard Man City lineup, of course. Villa might have a puncher's chance at a draw.
   102. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: March 04, 2013 at 03:49 PM (#4380358)
Rodwell had a mixed defense/attack role against Chelsea, basically as a direct runner from midfield - something like Yaya Toure's traditional position. He was kind of shockingly good, I thought. Toure in turn had a more advanced role in that game, with Garcia and Rodwell behind him. Plus Aguero is out because of injury, so I assume Tevez is playing up top. It's sort of the opposite of Fergie's Madrid lineup - there are a lot of players on the field whom you would think of as relatively defensively oriented, but I think their responsibilities are heavily weighted toward attacking.
   103. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 04, 2013 at 03:52 PM (#4380361)
there are a lot of players on the field who you would think of as defensively oriented, but I think their responsibilities are heavily weighted toward attacking.

I agree, that's why I said relative. That is near the least amount of firepower I can imagine Man City having on the pitch at one time. It's not like I'm going to put money on Villa getting any kind of result, but it may make the game a little more intriguing. #graspingatstraws
   104. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 04, 2013 at 03:58 PM (#4380371)
Macca always looks very serious in the pregame.
   105. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 04, 2013 at 04:21 PM (#4380411)
Villa, at the risk of jinxing them, have looked the better side so far.
   106. CWS Keith plans to boo your show at the Apollo Posted: March 04, 2013 at 04:24 PM (#4380418)
Not one comment on what was a fantastically-entertaining MLS game between Portland and the NYRBs last night? Pfft. Watching MLS is a definite way to increase your hipster cred, too, given the seemingly large amount of people who shrug off the league. Regarding the game itself, Diego Valeri looks like a really neat player, and if Caleb Porter's teams play like that, MLS will have its own little Zeman -- lots of scoring combined with hilarious mistakes at the back.

JSosa, regarding LFC's financials, I can't provide any great insight either, but I'd just note the timeframe is the ten months preceding June 1 2012. So that calculation:

- contains the severance payments to Dalglish.

- doesn't include the new kit deal, payments from the new TV deal (starts next year, I think?) or any of the wage-bill cleansing that's occurred since then (admittedly the effect of this last one is going to be more noticeable over a number of periods, as opposed to any one section of time).

I'm hoping to have some time tonight to actually look through the financials (The Echo has a copy).
   107. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 04, 2013 at 04:25 PM (#4380421)
Jack Rodwell continues to be made of glass. He's off and Dzeko is on.
   108. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 04, 2013 at 04:30 PM (#4380428)
Mike Dean just trolled Tevez.
   109. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 04, 2013 at 04:37 PM (#4380431)
City have looked much better since Dzeko came on. The post save Villa there.

edit: On replay it was a great save by Guzan to get enough of a touch to push the goal against the post.
   110. I am going to be Frank Posted: March 04, 2013 at 04:42 PM (#4380433)
Villa's defense is awful. Its amazing how much time and space City players have in the box.
   111. DA Baracus Posted: March 04, 2013 at 04:43 PM (#4380436)
Not one comment on what was a fantastically-entertaining MLS game between Portland and the NYRBs last night?


Entertaining, absolutely. Quality? Debatable. Though Diego Valeri's goal was pretty nice.
   112. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 04, 2013 at 04:45 PM (#4380440)
D'oh.

Dzeko got away with one there.
   113. CWS Keith plans to boo your show at the Apollo Posted: March 04, 2013 at 05:17 PM (#4380476)
DA - those MLS videos don't work in my browser, but I'm going to assume your first link is to one Silvestre's egregious mistakes. Talk about a nightmare of a half.
   114. DA Baracus Posted: March 04, 2013 at 05:22 PM (#4380482)
DA - those MLS videos don't work in my browser, but I'm going to assume your first link is to one Silvestre's egregious mistakes. Talk about a nightmare of a half.


Yes it was. And I left out the game tying own goal! It wasn't a clownshoes own goal but it was fitting for that game.
   115. Darkness and the howling fantods Posted: March 04, 2013 at 05:47 PM (#4380503)
Oof, that was a penalty. City have been the better team, but they are really lucky to be ahead.
   116. Topher Posted: March 04, 2013 at 06:25 PM (#4380522)
Not one comment on what was a fantastically-entertaining MLS game between Portland and the NYRBs last night?


Was too busy watching the CONCACAF U-20 final. That was pretty entertaining as well. I'm not sure if that helps or hurts the hipster cred vis-a-vis MLS.

I hope I'm treading the line on racial stereotyping and not crossing it .... I found it really nice to see what a large percentage of our (the US) team was composed of Hispanics of relatively diminutive stature. So typically the roster ends up being composed of a bunch of privileged white suburban kids that hit their growth spurt at an early age and have developed the muscles of an American Football player. Gives me hope that we are identifying talent and not just a bunch of physical specimens.
   117. DA Baracus Posted: March 04, 2013 at 07:08 PM (#4380545)
Was too busy watching the CONCACAF U-20 final. That was pretty entertaining as well. I'm not sure if that helps or hurts the hipster cred vis-a-vis MLS.


It helps, but if the US wasn't in it, it would be an even bigger factor. "Panama was all style, no substance this year. Pfft."

I found it really nice to see what a large percentage of our (the US) team was composed of Hispanics of relatively diminutive stature.


I saw on Twitter that there were something like 15 dual citizens on the field.
   118. Mefisto Posted: March 04, 2013 at 10:14 PM (#4380618)
   119. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 05, 2013 at 09:46 AM (#4380912)
Gary Neville analyzes Spurs-Arsenal

Let's call this the anti-Piers Morgan post game analysis.
   120. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 05, 2013 at 12:57 PM (#4381098)
Jack Rodwell will be out a month with his NINTH hamstring injury in the last two years.
   121. I am going to be Frank Posted: March 05, 2013 at 01:37 PM (#4381150)
Wow close to 15 minutes of Gary Neville crapping on both teams' defensive approach. I didn't think Monreal had any fault in the first goal but I'll defer to his vastly superior knowledge.

That chart* (times opponents caught offside) at the beginning is pretty interesting. Did Rodgers play with a high line at Swansea? If he did he didn't force it on Liverpool the way AVB forced it on Chelsea.

* The chart is number of times opposing team caught offside:
1. Arsenal - 99
2. Spurs - 88
3. West Ham - 82
4. Villa - 80
19. Liverpool - 36
20. Man U - 31
   122. SuperGrover Posted: March 05, 2013 at 02:43 PM (#4381238)
Man Utd XI: De Gea, Rafael, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Carrick, Cleverley, Nani, Welbeck, Giggs, Van Persie

No Rooney. Much more defensive look than the first game. Interesting starting XI.
   123. ursus arctos Posted: March 05, 2013 at 02:43 PM (#4381239)
Rooney left out against Madrid; Giggs to start.
   124. SuperGrover Posted: March 05, 2013 at 02:44 PM (#4381240)
Wow close to 15 minutes of Gary Neville crapping on both teams' defensive approach. I didn't think Monreal had any fault in the first goal but I'll defer to his vastly superior knowledge.


Yeah not sure how the first one was on Monreal. Looked like a Mertesacker issues with the high line to me. The second one was squarely on Monreal/Verm (more Monreal IMO).
   125. SuperGrover Posted: March 05, 2013 at 02:53 PM (#4381246)
Not sure why SAF is not playing Rooney off RVP. He didn't play well in the first, but that's because he was matched on Ronaldo and Rafael's side. He's no winger.

I would have dropped one of Carrick, Cleverly or Giggs for Rooney.
   126. SuperGrover Posted: March 05, 2013 at 02:56 PM (#4381248)
#ManUtd Subs : Lindegaard, Evans, Valencia, Kagawa, Rooney, Young, Hernandez

The look of those subs tells me how defensive the starting XI is. SAF trying to a 0-0 draw?

I was thinking of taking United at +165 but I do not like that lineup at all. I don't see them winning in pre-extended time with that lineup.
   127. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 05, 2013 at 02:59 PM (#4381250)
I don't like that United lineup, but the old bastard knows better than I do.
   128. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 05, 2013 at 03:03 PM (#4381252)
Real Madrid: 41-Diego Lopez; 17-Alvaro Arbeloa, 2-Raphael Varane, 4-Sergio Ramos, 5-Fabio Coentrao; 14-Xabi Alonso, 6-Sami Khedira; 22-Angel Di Maria, 10-Mesut Ozil, 7-Cristiano Ronaldo; 20-Gonzalo Higuain.

Subs: Adan, Pepe, Kaka, Benzema, Albiol, Modric, Callejon.

No surprises here.
   129. I am going to be Frank Posted: March 05, 2013 at 03:05 PM (#4381256)
I can't believe he dropped Rooney and is playing Giggs. I guess Giggs is going to try and harass Alonso.
   130. JuanGone..except1game Posted: March 05, 2013 at 03:09 PM (#4381261)
I don't like that United lineup, but the old bastard knows better than I do.


Wow, that lineup of SAF is negative. He usually knows what he's doing, but it does some a little too clever by half.
   131. SuperGrover Posted: March 05, 2013 at 03:09 PM (#4381262)
I can't believe he dropped Rooney and is playing Giggs. I guess Giggs is going to try and harass Alonso.


I presume that is the plan. Just an incredibly defensive stance to take when at home and standing on 1-1. He doesn't think he can keep them scoreless does he?
   132. Mefisto Posted: March 05, 2013 at 03:28 PM (#4381285)
Best guess on the Utd lineup: he's worried about Real's counters, so he's going to let them have the ball and just sit deep. Since that's what Real wants to do too, this could be a very boring, cautious match.
   133. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 05, 2013 at 03:36 PM (#4381298)
Fox is giving me a choice of commentary. Think I'll skip Gus Johnson for this one.

edit: Also, it really annoys me the Dortmund-Shakhtar game is on at the same time.
   134. SuperGrover Posted: March 05, 2013 at 03:37 PM (#4381300)
Best guess on the Utd lineup: he's worried about Real's counters, so he's going to let them have the ball and just sit deep. Since that's what Real wants to do too, this could be a very boring, cautious match.


That is my thought as well. Just bet under 3 -120. Of course, last time I expected a wide open game and took the over only to see a bunch of missed chances and both teams shut it down at half. Who knows?
   135. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:06 PM (#4381325)
Seriously, Johnson? How did you think that was in?
   136. Mattbert Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:09 PM (#4381330)
I had thought Mourinho would drop Arbeloa for Pepe and shift Ramos out to right back.
   137. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:09 PM (#4381331)
Am, of course, watching the Dortmund game. But the Guardian PBP makes it sound like United have had the better chances so far.
   138. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:14 PM (#4381334)
Kucher really just should have picked up a second yellow there.
   139. zack Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:16 PM (#4381335)
Yeah, United have had the better chances. They have played very tight defense and the Madrid front 7 have played indifferent-at-best defense. So United can easily hoof the ball out of the back to a runner with no one within 20 feet of him, hence the chances.

And Gus "What's a block?" Johnson has been terrible.
   140. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:18 PM (#4381337)
Hey, look! Felipe Santana can be useful!
   141. Flynn Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:28 PM (#4381341)
Comedy defending on the Goetze goal. I'ma just gonna stick my leg out and hope. K, bro.

I can't get a good stream for this game but I feel less bad about it now, no way Dortmund fail to go through.
   142. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:31 PM (#4381343)
That goal really doesn't change much- Shakhtar needed 2 before, they still need 2.
   143. Flynn Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:34 PM (#4381348)
I think that goal shows they aren't going to get 2 without Dortmund getting 3, IMHO.
   144. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:38 PM (#4381354)
You can see what Fergie was thinking playing Giggs instead of Rooney--he can trust Giggs to follow instructions and track back. All of Man U's attacks are coming through Welbeck so maybe Rooney on for Van Persie makes sense in the second half as Man U are playing so deep anyway that Van Persie is fairly invisible. I'm not sure what Real can change up to pick the lock here. This is what they've struggled with all year. I think they'll need to score on a set piece or hope for a Ronaldo golazo as I don't see them opening Man U up.
   145. Mattbert Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:42 PM (#4381359)
I'm not sure what Real can change up to pick the lock here.

Bringing on a certain former Tottenham player might not be the worst idea in the world.
   146. zack Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:49 PM (#4381365)
Speaking of clown shoes...it was a long chain of mistakes but I don't know how Varane can overrun the ball before that last cross. Other than being a teenager.
   147. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:50 PM (#4381366)
Well, that doesn't change much. Real still need just a goal.
   148. zack Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:52 PM (#4381369)
Also, Warren Barton: you are an idiot. It's not the look of defeat, it's the look of "I just gave up a ####### ############# #### #### #### ##### own goal".
   149. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:57 PM (#4381372)
You are kidding with that ####.
   150. Tike Redman's Shattered Dreams Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:57 PM (#4381373)
Well then. That changes things.

EDIT: Terrible decision, BTW. Not even close to intentional.
   151. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:58 PM (#4381374)
Really, that is horseshit.
   152. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:58 PM (#4381376)
How on earth is that given as a red?
   153. Flynn Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:59 PM (#4381377)
Because it's the same kick Nigel de Jong did in the World Cup that absolutely everybody thought was a red card?
   154. zack Posted: March 05, 2013 at 04:59 PM (#4381379)
Intent isn't a requirement. It was certainly reckless.
   155. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:00 PM (#4381380)
Commence SAF griping!
   156. Tike Redman's Shattered Dreams Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:00 PM (#4381382)
How on earth is that given as a red?

Well, it was basically a flying kick to the chest. The ref must have thought he knew Arbeloa was there.
   157. sardonic Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:00 PM (#4381383)
It's different though, Arbeloa comes in from more of an angle. When Nani goes up for the ball, Arbeloa is not in his line of sight at all, it looks more like Arbeloa jumps into the kick late to get a card.
   158. Tike Redman's Shattered Dreams Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:01 PM (#4381384)
Intent isn't a requirement. It was certainly reckless.

Sure, but it's very rare to have a red card given to a player who had no idea the other guy was anywhere near him.
   159. sardonic Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:02 PM (#4381386)
Also, the kick did not hit the chest, it hits Arbeloa's arm as he flies by.
   160. Flynn Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:03 PM (#4381389)
Intent doesn't matter.
   161. sardonic Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:03 PM (#4381390)
double post
   162. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:04 PM (#4381391)
Yeah, the de Jong kick was straight to the chest and I think it was a lot more reckless than this one.
   163. Tike Redman's Shattered Dreams Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:04 PM (#4381392)
Intent doesn't matter.
Intent isn't necessary but it's sufficient. The most likely explanation for a red card like that is that the referee thought it was intentional. The next most likely is that he thought it was just extremely reckless. I think you could make a case for the latter but it wouldn't be a strong one.
   164. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:05 PM (#4381393)
Wow, HORRIBLE goalkeeping error makes it 3-0 Dortmund.
   165. Flynn Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:06 PM (#4381396)
Yeah, the de Jong kick was straight to the chest and I think it was a lot more reckless than this one.


The de Jong red wasn't just on the wrong side of red, it was so far on the wrong side of red that if you could give two reds you would. Everybody in the bar I was watching was astonished he stayed on the pitch - and this bar was in Amsterdam.

You don't go studs up over the waist with a player anywhere near you and expect to stay on the pitch.
   166. Tike Redman's Shattered Dreams Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:06 PM (#4381397)
Also, the kick did not hit the chest, it hits Arbeloa's arm as he flies by.
I haven't seen any more replays but in retrospect I think you're probably right.
   167. Tike Redman's Shattered Dreams Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:08 PM (#4381399)
What a shot from Modric!
   168. Mattbert Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:10 PM (#4381401)
Bringing on a certain former Tottenham player might not be the worst idea in the world.

As I was saying...
   169. Tike Redman's Shattered Dreams Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:11 PM (#4381405)
The SAF post-game interview's going to be a peach.
   170. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:21 PM (#4381416)
After the Red I was kinda hoping for United. In games I have no rooting interest, I would rather they not be decided like this.
   171. Tike Redman's Shattered Dreams Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:21 PM (#4381417)
You don't go studs up over the waist with a player anywhere near you and expect to stay on the pitch.
I can see that point of view, and I agree as a general rule when a player knows the opponent is nearby. In this case though I think it's extremely harsh because there was no indication that Nani had seen Arbeloa. A yellow is justified, but a red is far too much.
   172. sardonic Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:26 PM (#4381423)
MU has had their chances.
   173. zack Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:33 PM (#4381431)
United have been pretty effective and really fun bombing forward with abandon. Makes you wonder how awesome this game could have been if SAF hadn't been so negative.

   174. Flynn Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:34 PM (#4381432)
I can see that point of view, and I agree as a general rule when a player knows the opponent is nearby. In this case though I think it's extremely harsh because there was no indication that Nani had seen Arbeloa. A yellow is justified, but a red is far too much.


Continental refs (I'm counting Turkey as continental) tend to take an extremely harsh stance on incidents like this. It will be interesting to see the European, non-Spanish, non-British reaction to this tomorrow. I wouldn't be surprised at all if the Germans, Italians, French, etc. all think it was an obvious red.
   175. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:34 PM (#4381433)
"Every call has gone Real Madrid's way?" Other than the red (which is obviously a big deal), I haven't seen any particular incorrect calls. Just because a ManU player goes down in the box and doesn't get a penalty doesn't mean "every call has gone Real Madrid's way".
   176. Flynn Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:37 PM (#4381437)
Having just done a recon on Kicker, they describe it as "tough but reasonable".
   177. Mefisto Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:37 PM (#4381438)
Well, that's a shame. Great game until the ref decided to, well, decide it.
   178. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:44 PM (#4381447)
Only comment I got from the German coverage from the Dortmund game was "controversial".
   179. Flynn Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:46 PM (#4381449)
Gazzetta dello Sport described as "maybe overkill, but the incident was avoidable".

   180. The Voice of America Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:46 PM (#4381452)
Marca's "ref expert" said it should have been a yellow. I agree.
   181. Flynn Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:47 PM (#4381454)
Roy Keane's calling it a red card on ITV.
   182. J. Sosa Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:49 PM (#4381456)
I wonder if Barton has put the gingham pompoms down yet.

Jeez.

Not every official is Howard Webb. You go flying with your spikes high you can't complain too much. I thought it was a solid yellow even though I'm not sure Nani was innocent. He pushed off with his spikes. Yeah, I don't think he saw him, but he did push off and his spikes were high. It was very much at a minimum a yellow, and as high spikes are such a dangerous play, and its a fool's game to judge intent, I had no problem with the red. You let your fate out of your hands when you go high with your spikes, no sympathy from me.

Wynalda's commentary was also typically ridiculous.
   183. Swedish Chef Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:51 PM (#4381460)
Roy Keane's calling it a red card on ITV.

Clear evidence that that's an impostor and the real Roy Keane is bound and gagged in a basement somewhere.
   184. Juilin Sandar to Conkling Speedwell (Arjun) Posted: March 05, 2013 at 05:53 PM (#4381465)
You go flying with your spikes high you can't complain too much. I thought it was a solid yellow even though I'm not sure Nani was innocent. He pushed off with his spikes. Yeah, I don't think he saw him, but he did push off and his spikes were high. It was very much at a minimum a yellow, and as high spikes are such a dangerous play, and its a fool's game to judge intent, I had no problem with the red. You let your fate out of your hands when you go high with your spikes, no sympathy from me.

This is pretty much how I see it. I probably would have given a yellow, but I don't really have a problem with the red; at the very least, to me it's defensible.
   185. Mattbert Posted: March 05, 2013 at 06:05 PM (#4381481)
Seems to me it's an awful lot like the infamous Nigel de Jong incident. Player is tracking the ball over his shoulder, goes in with a high boot to control it, and drills an opposing player he may or may not have seen right in the torso. Unlucky for Nani, but that's not a particularly harsh decision in my view.

For the record, I thought de Jong should have been sent off as well but also that he was unfairly pilloried for that challenge. He's a nasty player, but I don't think in that instance he intended to kung-fu kick Alonso in the chest.
   186. JuanGone..except1game Posted: March 05, 2013 at 06:14 PM (#4381489)
..
   187. JuanGone..except1game Posted: March 05, 2013 at 06:14 PM (#4381491)
I have to say that I was really wrong about Shaktar's chances for Borussia. Willian was a bigger loss than I thought at the time.
   188. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: March 05, 2013 at 06:21 PM (#4381500)
The red card is obviously the big story, but I think it's unfairly crowding out the story of what a ridiculous game Diego Lopez had. He got off his line very well to stuff a couple of one-on-ones, made some great reaction saves, and commanded his box well, too. You can't ask for a better performance from a keeper.
   189. Mefisto Posted: March 05, 2013 at 06:35 PM (#4381514)
Agreed with 188; Lopez was MotM for Madrid.

I think of myself as pretty European in my preferred style of calling the game. I think many more fouls should be called in the EPL than actually are. However, I don't see the comparison to De Jong at all. Nani clearly was focused on the ball and didn't see Arbeloa at all. Nani just did what all players do when going for the ball and his foot certainly wasn't chest high. That's yellow IMO. De Jong was so bad that the Dutch should have had 2 players sent off.
   190. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 05, 2013 at 06:40 PM (#4381519)
Whether it was a red or not, it's a shame as that was a really engrossing tactical battle up until the sending off.
   191. zack Posted: March 05, 2013 at 06:47 PM (#4381521)
The red card is obviously the big story, but I think it's unfairly crowding out the story of what a ridiculous game Diego Lopez had. He got off his line very well to stuff a couple of one-on-ones, made some great reaction saves, and commanded his box well, too. You can't ask for a better performance from a keeper.

An excellent performance, but I think ridiculous is a better term than you meant, between punching Vidic in the head then falling down after he saw Vidic down, wasting several minutes off a shoulder check from Van Persie that was nothing, and spending 3 years before every goal kick.

It'd be nice if there was a penalty between worthless loss of possession and a card for illegal plays in the outfield. I suggest laps.
   192. sardonic Posted: March 05, 2013 at 06:52 PM (#4381522)
Here's a pretty good version: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXJCs-vbmAM

The call is defensible, but I still wish that it hadn't been made. To me, it's also extremely different than the De Jong kick (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zJwFA0P7oaM). In the De Jong case, the ball was coming toward him from the front, and the player was right in his line of sight, and the boot catches him straight in the chest. De Jong seems to raise his leg clearly after when he should have seen the other player.

In Nani's case, he's tracking the ball over his shoulder, jumps to try to take it down with his leg, Arbeloa comes in from the side (from behind Nani's head) and jumps in a path that intersects with Nani's path. In real time, I thought Arbeloa took off after Nani did, but looking at the replays it looks more like a 50/50.
   193. I am going to be Frank Posted: March 05, 2013 at 06:54 PM (#4381525)
Real time I thought, at worst, it was a yellow. At no point did I ever think it was a straight red. Welbeck was tremendous man-marking Alonso and going forward. I was a little shocked that United had control of the game until the red card. I don't know how a combination of Giggs and Rafael kept Ronaldo quiet.
   194. SuperGrover Posted: March 05, 2013 at 07:53 PM (#4381576)
Also, the kick did not hit the chest, it hits Arbeloa's arm as he flies by.


Nah he kicks him in the abdomen. Check out the still at the 6 second mark. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuv8QK98I4M

I don't think it was a red, but it is a bit closer than people are making it to be, especially when you consider the location of the official and the assistant. He's well behind the play and has no chance of seeing where Nani's head is before making that call. That's why Wynalda's "Look at his eyes!" plea is pretty silly; how the #### is he supposed to see his eyes from 30 yards away when he is looking the other direction?

As #192 it was defensible, but probably not the correct decision. I've seen much worse though. And given that I took the under I was rooting for it to be anything but red.

"Every call has gone Real Madrid's way?" Other than the red (which is obviously a big deal), I haven't seen any particular incorrect calls. Just because a ManU player goes down in the box and doesn't get a penalty doesn't mean "every call has gone Real Madrid's way".


Yeah that was horseshit. He claimed there was a handball in the 84th minute or so when it wasn't even close. Seemed like a ridiculously sore loser. That announcing team is just awful.

Wynalda's commentary was also typically ridiculous.


Surely NBC can get better talking heads than Fox, right?
   195. SuperGrover Posted: March 05, 2013 at 07:54 PM (#4381577)
An excellent performance, but I think ridiculous is a better term than you meant, between punching Vidic in the head then falling down after he saw Vidic down, wasting several minutes off a shoulder check from Van Persie that was nothing, and spending 3 years before every goal kick.


De Gea would have done the same as would nearly every keeper Europe. It's simple to fix but until they do time wasting is always going to occur.
   196. Baldrick Posted: March 05, 2013 at 10:32 PM (#4381638)
Sometimes the cliche pretty much covers it: "You've seen them given."

It's not an egregious call either way, though I'm perfectly confident saying that it wasn't *really* a red (whatever that means).
   197. zack Posted: March 05, 2013 at 10:34 PM (#4381640)
Surely NBC can get better talking heads than Fox, right?

Well, they employ this guy as their main analyst, so no, probably not. The actual announcing team is usually pretty good though.

If they do soccer as they do hockey, they'll pull in guys to split time from their regular gigs, rather than have a dedicated team, which works pretty well.
   198. The Kentucky Gentleman, Mark Edward Posted: March 06, 2013 at 02:14 AM (#4381716)
I've been rough on Felipe Santana but he had a really solid game today. He looked much more composed than he has in the past. I'd still rather have Hummels out there but Santana really stepped up today.

Lewandowski's work on the second goal was amazing.

I'm just hoping Dortmund can stay healthy because they don't have much depth outside the starting 11.

And I'm not really used to homer announcers but Martin Tyler and whomever his partner was today were ridiculous. The amount of crying and whining was obnoxious.
   199. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 06, 2013 at 09:04 AM (#4381758)
   200. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: March 06, 2013 at 09:12 AM (#4381763)
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