Friday, November 22, 2013

Huge clash in Germany; Chance to forget Milner has 44 caps




So watching Ronaldo was fantastic (by far the best player in the world right now), seeing France come back was inspiring (although many people wanted them to miss out), and some of the African qualifiers were great - but now we have the 32, it's all set. International friendlies are awful, as anyone who watched England v Germany will testify. So let's get back to some club football, see some quality, and not wonder how James Milner has 44 caps for England.


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So Everton v Liverpool eh? Martinez v Rodgers. Personally I think Roberto is a better manager and seems to be able to get teams to actually play. He sticks to his principals and has inherited a very good Everton team - the face they have Romelu Lukaku too seems a little unfair, but so be it. Liverpool are very strong going forward, but as we saw against Arsenal, Rodgers doesn't seem to have a Plan B. If Sturridge and Suarez are not firing, Coutinho and Gerrard need to boss the game - because Jordan Henderson, Victor Moses and Joe Allen have all been poor. To say Liverpool need another striking option seems excessive at this point, but they do if they want to really contend.

Arsenal need someone other than Giroud too. A huge game at home against Southampton. It may not sound right, but they need Walcott and others to take the burden off the Frenchman (because he's not that good).

Some early relegation games loom too. Hull v Palace, Stoke v Sunderland and Cardiff v Manchester United! We're coming into a key period where teams need to win games rather than draw, and not let themselves get detached from the pack. West Ham need a win, as do Fulham, but so does everyone I suppose!

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A repeat of last year's Champions League final in Germany this weekend. Dortmund against Bayern. First against second, with the reigning champs unbeaten, conceding just 7 goals in 12 games.  Bayern haven't lost away in the Bundesliga for 24 games, which is just unreal, but they will be without Frank Ribery who was injured for France. Everyone is injured for Dortmund, with their defense really suffering - and as no one can stop Bayern scoring, don't be surprised if Mario Gotze notches against his old team. He's bound to get a lot of abuse from the fans, and should probably avoid Jurgen Klopp screaming at him too!

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I'm bored of La Liga. It's so early to say that, but there isn't a game that really interests me this weekend. Barca without Messi, Real without Khedira and Alonso - yeah, big losses, but those two giants have so many other players. Just means we get to see more of Neymar and Isco.

The top 5 in Serie A are breaking away too, but perhaps it's more interesting to see how bad AC Milan are. 10th after 12 games, no away wins, 19 points behind Roma already and nothing too bright on the horizon. They still have Mario tho, and he's worth admittance on his own.