Saturday, March 2, 2013

El Classico: Post Game Thoughts

Pepe in midfield again to disrupt the rhythm of Barcelona. He was there to bully. At half time, FCBarcelona had been dominating, but Madrid looked dangerous on the break. Nothing new there. Madrid breaking at speed, scored an overly easy looking goal in the 7th minute of the game. Thankfully, not long afterwards, Barca worked a couple of passes down the right; Alves sent Messi through, and the Flea burned Sergio Ramos for the equalizer. 
Late in the second half, Ramos got his revenge, nodding in from a corner to secure the win. It is clear Madrid no longer fear Barca. The tide has definitely turned. This win for them is like gin in the tonic. They will go into their Champions  League tie against Madrid feeling high. Never before have I hope more that a team was humbled by another than now. Common u Red Devils!

The Unneccessary Classico: Pregame Thoughts

This is the second Classico of the year in the regular lbva, and it has been under hyped. Most say Barca have already won the league and have nothing to play for. Madrid couldn't care less, according to most. They have already lost the league, and have a huge match on Tuesday in the Champions League against Manchester United. 

Barca's incredibly poor run of form of late need to be reversed, however, and this is the perfect match to do so. Madrid will try to obfuscate them by whatever means necessary, and my guess is that it will be ugly. Let's see.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Musings at the Midpoint

Here are my main thoughts on football so far, or at least what little I have seen of it.

The EPL: Though I live in Spain, I seem to watch more of the EPL than anything else. This is largely a result of scheduling -- it so happens that the EPL play games at reasonable hours here in Europe, whereas in Spain the games are so bloody late in the evening (though when you've got a toddler). I've caught some Man City, Man United, Arsenal and Spurs games - all have entertained. The Man City  Man United game was particularly entertaining. Neither team looked like world beaters, but both looked like they could score goals against anyone. Due to current standings, my money's on United for the title. They aren't spectacular now, but I can't see anyone else overtaking them.

La Liga: Barcelona are off to a tremendous start. I watched several games at the start of the season, and watched victories fall into their lap even when they scarcely deserved them. It seems they started believing in that luck, and eventually stopped having to rely on it for wins -- lately, their form has been tremendous.
It gives me no end of pleasure watching Madrid stumble as they have. Though I haven't watched them much this year, I have followed them closely in match reports. Unlike Barca, luck has not been with them much this year.  It appears Jose Mourinho has almost worn out his welcome in Spain - I won't be mourning his departure should it come in the summer.

The Champions League: Keeping with Madrid - theirs was the group to watch, eh? Dortmund was spectacular; Man City was apathetic, and Madrid were well tested.  Great games in that group. Kudos to Celtic for making it through in Barca's group, too. Neat to see them beat my club in that competition -- they deserved it. Chelsea - ha! Unlovable winners last year made for pleasant watching this year in their failure.
The next round has some great games - Madrid v. United being the real one to watch, of course. Though Barca v. Milan will be interesting. I went to their quarter-final game last year and it was great. Marcotti's take on some of the other matchups is worth viewing.
All for now -- hoping for more football and more posts in 2013.
Happy New Year!