Actual (Association) Football Talk.

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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Rodion Raskolnikov » Thu Mar 01, 2012 11:18 am UTC

There was a lot of international friendlies last night. France beat Germany 2-1, USA beat Italy 1-0 in Genoa, Netherlands beat England 3-2 and Spain beat Venezuela 5-0. Messi scored his first international hat-trick against Switzerland.

Scotland managed a 1-1 draw away to Slovenia. Not a bad result, but the performance was heartening, especially in the first half. We passed the ball well, didn't rush things and controlled the match for long periods. Although I'm not a big fan of him playing on the left, James Forrest played well and looks like he could be a really top international player in a few years. I think a big club will come in for him fairly soon.
I don't agree with every decision Levein makes (such as leaving out McCormack and McNaughton but calling up Foster), but things are definitely improving under him. We play nice football, we're getting some goals and results are improving. We have the strongest pool of midfielders and strikers to choose from I can remember, some good full backs and two great goal keepers. If only we had a couple of decent centre backs.
Looking at our group for World Cup 2014, I feel pretty confident we have a chance to top the group.

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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby charliepanayi » Thu Mar 01, 2012 2:00 pm UTC

I really cannot see Scotland finishing ahead of Serbia and Croatia, not to mention Wales.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Rodion Raskolnikov » Thu Mar 01, 2012 2:15 pm UTC

I think Croatia are marginally the best side in the group, with Scotland, Serbia and Belgium all close behind. Wales are a wee bit behind those four. It should be a very tight group, but at least we have a decent chance of winning it. Our last group had Spain, before that we had the Netherlands and before that we had France, Spain and Ukraine, so we never had much of a chance of topping any of those three groups. Scotland tend to do badly against teams we expect to beat, so having a group with teams around the same level us as should suit us.

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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Dream » Sat Mar 03, 2012 1:47 pm UTC

Looks like Liverpool need some help scoring today. Szczesny is blaying a blinder and the woodwork is taing a pounding.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Amie » Sun Mar 04, 2012 2:48 am UTC

That Rob van Persie goal was great.

Meanwhile, I am disappointed in Daniel Sturridge. He's been awful for a while and yesterday it cost us a goddamn win. West Brom are very pacey and we weren't as quick on our feet. Sigh.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Dream » Sun Mar 04, 2012 11:47 am UTC

There were a few shockers in the Chelsea match. Very comforting for Arsenal's Champion's league hopes.

Even though van Persie's goal was great, I thought the two Swansea goals were better. I'm so glad that team is in the Premier League.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby charliepanayi » Sun Mar 04, 2012 1:50 pm UTC

So Villas-Boas has gone. I feel sorry for the poor guy, talk about a thankless task.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Dream » Sun Mar 04, 2012 1:52 pm UTC

Wow, that was sudden, poorly timed and stupid. Abramovich is going to have more managers than seasons if he keeps up his fickle attitude. I wonderwas it something Villas-Boas said, rather than his performance? He's been critical of the team, and yesterday said he didn't need Abramovich's backing.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby charliepanayi » Sun Mar 04, 2012 2:08 pm UTC

It is another impatient move from the club. I think the problem is Chelsea really need that top four slot, and they probably feel that if they kept AVB on, it wasn't going to happen. Hope their form doesn't improve now anyway! Except when they play Spurs this month.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Amie » Sun Mar 04, 2012 3:23 pm UTC

I am absolutely gutted. AVB was such a no-nonsense manager and he really didn't get enough chances.

Meanwhile, worth mentioning today is Real Zaragoza's win over Villarreal with that goal coming in the last few seconds of stoppage time. It was absolutely brilliant. Amazing football by Abraham. Also, Fulham is being great right now.

EDIT: Holy shit Pogrebnyak. Hat-trick.
EDIT2: Roman wants Guardiola according to Soccernet.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Dream » Sun Mar 04, 2012 5:36 pm UTC

Amie wrote:Roman wants Guardiola according to Soccernet.

Ahaha, that's hilarious. What top flight manager would take Abramovich's shilling after such a ruthless move against a manager he hired a metaphorical fortnight ago? I can't see Guardiola taking any job that doesn't give him huge latitude to build another Barca, that is even if he wants to leave there, which is not exactly established. Chelsea is not that. It's not even in the same postcode as that.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Amie » Sun Mar 04, 2012 6:41 pm UTC

Yes it is bollocks. Harry is known to write bullshit articles. That was the point of that link, really.

Also, yes, as a fan, it is tiring to see managers getting sacked like this, even though our captain backed AVB to the hilt. Maybe we'll have a steady manager next season. *hopes*
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Godskalken » Tue Mar 06, 2012 9:28 pm UTC

Did you see that ludicrous display last night? The thing about Arsenal is, they always try and walk it in.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Dream » Tue Mar 06, 2012 10:02 pm UTC

So close! Soooo close! An absolute moral victory for Arsenal, but they just gave it too much early on, and tired by the end. Certainly silenced the naysayers though. A performance of real character and substance.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby charliepanayi » Tue Mar 06, 2012 11:03 pm UTC

As J. Walter Weatherman would say, and that's why you don't lose the first leg 4-0.

Good try in the end, but will all be for nothing unless they secure a spot in the European Cup next season. Got to avoid the usual March to May woes and push on from here.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Dream » Tue Mar 06, 2012 11:39 pm UTC

After tonight, they will do it. It's now changed from "will we qualify automatically?" to "will we overhaul Spurs and finish third?". Maybe it will all go wrong, league football can be very cruel. But the task has changed from survival to excellence. Arsenal are aiming up for the rest of the season, and after how great the character they've shown to get where they are, I don't see them capitulating now.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Amie » Wed Mar 07, 2012 2:13 pm UTC

Good effort by Arsenal.

Also, yay for Chelsea. It was sad to see Miereles not celebrate much and I understand why. The next game after AVB left, Miereles scores a beautiful goal. If only they had let him stay...
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Garm » Wed Mar 07, 2012 5:36 pm UTC

We'd better hope that Kroenke ponies up some money for Arsenal instead of relying on Wenger's ability to nurture young talent. My hope is that now he's majority holder in Arsenal he'll start spending more money on all his teams.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby charliepanayi » Wed Mar 07, 2012 10:36 pm UTC

Fantastic achievement by Apoel Nicosia to make it to the quarter-finals of the European Cup :D
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Dream » Wed Mar 07, 2012 10:48 pm UTC

charliepanayi wrote:Fantastic achievement by Apoel Nicosia to make it to the quarter-finals of the European Cup :D

Absolutely!

That penalty shootout was more exciting than the entire eight goal Barca/Leverkusen match. I love me some penalty shootout!
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby ElWanderer » Thu Mar 08, 2012 1:41 pm UTC

Garm wrote:We'd better hope that Kroenke ponies up some money for Arsenal instead of relying on Wenger's ability to nurture young talent. My hope is that now he's majority holder in Arsenal he'll start spending more money on all his teams.

Lukas Podolski will be bought in the summer for £10.9million, it's being reported.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/17295576

Meanwhile Wolves have disciplined Roger Johnson for some unspecified misconduct in training. He was bought in at (relatively) great expense to shore up our leaky defence, but it doesn't really seem to have worked :(
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Dream » Thu Mar 08, 2012 2:09 pm UTC

ElWanderer wrote:Meanwhile Wolves have disciplined Roger Johnson for some unspecified misconduct in training.

Often these "unspecified" things are punches or fights. Not to say this one is, but usually that's the code. Just like hungover is always "breaking curfew".

What do you think of McCarthy being sacked? Should he have finished the season? Should the club have had a replacement lined up? Connor hasn't turned things around at all, some of the worst results this season have been in the past few weeks. Was it a mistake?
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby ElWanderer » Thu Mar 08, 2012 2:34 pm UTC

Dream wrote:What do you think of McCarthy being sacked? Should he have finished the season? Should the club have had a replacement lined up? Connor hasn't turned things around at all, some of the worst results this season have been in the past few weeks. Was it a mistake?


I'm tempted to say ask me again next week, after we've played Blackburn! We've only had two matches under Connor; one good fightback and one terrible, harrowing defeat.

Since the transfer window was brought in, sacking a manager between February and May always feels like a mistake unless you can bring in someone excellent at man management, as whoever takes over can't change the squad. Considering we haven't been able to find a replacement (though the thought of lining one up beforehand always leaves me a bit cold) and been made to look quite desperate, no I don't think it was a good idea.

I liked McCarthy's no-nonsense style, but the problem is we were really good for just the first three games or so this season, then utter poo ever since. Playing crap football with a defence that leaks like a sieve isn't really sustainable - the chairman probably should have acted sooner. I think if there had been an ultimatum to improve performances in December/January, combined with purchasing a good defensive player or two, I might have been happy with a change of manager.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Jesse » Thu Mar 08, 2012 2:40 pm UTC

I fully believe that clubs should never sack a manager without having someone else lined up. So often we see clubs perform even worse for a while before they get someone new in and it means that if no-one ends up wanting it, then you've still got a bloke there in charge.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Rodion Raskolnikov » Thu Mar 08, 2012 4:29 pm UTC

So it seems Rangers will not be allowed to play in Europe next season and might struggle to even complete their league fixtures this year. (For those who don't know, their finances are quite a complicated mess, but they basically have debts they can't afford and have large unpaid VAT and tax bills to pay and have gone into administration.)

It seems they might go into liquidation and form a new company, which would then reapply for a position in the league. The simple option would be to put them in the bottom division, the 3rd Division, and let them work their way back up but the lack of revenue (such as TV money) if Rangers weren't there could cause financial disaster for the rest of the clubs in the SPL. If the other clubs vote in favour, a new Rangers club could be immediately reinstated in the SPL, but a lot of people would be unhappy about it. Its seems unfair, but I'm not sure what kind of state Scottish football would be left in if Rangers are not in the top league. I'm torn.

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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Amie » Thu Mar 08, 2012 4:41 pm UTC

All the Torres haters (and just everyone else actually) should read the column written by Omid Djalili today. Is fucking hilarious and awesome.
"Players were visibly seen mouthing 'Torres' when he won the penalty urging him to take it but he refused with a firmness that made rewind my Sky+ and try to lip read what he was saying to Mata with my rudimentary Spanish. On third view Torres clearly says to his Spanish compatriot, 'me take the penalty? Don't patronise me. I'm not buying a goal cheaply, I score from open play. You take it with your David Silva left foot you beardy git'."
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Dream » Thu Mar 08, 2012 8:56 pm UTC

Man City were sleepwalking tonight, and deserved to lose the match. The arrogance of dropping into the Europa, and thus not trying hard enough deserves to be punished.

Jesse wrote:I fully believe that clubs should never sack a manager without having someone else lined up.

I agree. I think that the decision to sack should mean that the search begins, not that the manager is escorted from the premises that day. The manager should then be expected to do their job to the last day the same way a player is expected to battle it out right up until their transfer happens. And yeah, if there is an upturn in performance, the club can stop the sacking and go on with the current boss.

My soft Irish heart says Wolves should have stood by McCarthy because he stood by them. He'd have managed them in the Championship again, no question. Probably not a footballing decision I'd be making though...
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby yedidyak » Thu Mar 08, 2012 11:29 pm UTC

Is passing the ball without a boot on really a free kick? Bilbao were truly great tonight, and United less than, but one just slightly offside goal and then that? :(
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Amie » Fri Mar 09, 2012 1:12 pm UTC

I read this article on an Aspie's take on Football. Amazing, amazing read.
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Re: Actual (Association) soccer Talk.

Postby charliepanayi » Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:17 pm UTC

I'm not sure if I should be happy or worried we seem to be using up our last minute winners quota! I still think Spurs will get third with the remaining fixtures they have (Chelsea apart) but this will boost our top four chances no end, especially with the likes of Everton, Stoke, Man City and Chelsea still to play.
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Re: Actual (Association) soccer Talk.

Postby Dream » Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:23 pm UTC

Well, it was another demonstration of the character in the team, and the more of that they display, the more likely it is they'll come out with the right results in big matches at the close of the season. They kept fighting, and kept energy, right until the end. They'll need that fitness by the end. Delighted by the result!
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby wam » Tue Mar 13, 2012 4:34 pm UTC

Jesse wrote:I fully believe that clubs should never sack a manager without having someone else lined up. So often we see clubs perform even worse for a while before they get someone new in and it means that if no-one ends up wanting it, then you've still got a bloke there in charge.


I was told when having this exact same argument with someone that under UK law they can't as it would then be classed as constructive dismissal!

Anyone whos more familiar with employment law want to agree/disagree?
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Dream » Tue Mar 13, 2012 4:56 pm UTC

There's no way you'd pin constructive dismissal on any firm that was pointing at substandard results and saying "we need someone in this role who delivers better results".
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Amie » Wed Mar 14, 2012 10:15 pm UTC

Champions fucking League motherfuckers.

To see Drogba, Terry and Lampard score in a game like this and watch Ivanovic kick in the winning goal was a fan's dream.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby charliepanayi » Wed Mar 14, 2012 10:54 pm UTC

I hate Napoli so, so much. Can Chelsea please get Barcelona or Real Madrid now so they can be stuffed.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Amie » Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:56 am UTC

Teh Lulz. The only way Barca can beat us is if the ref doesn't give us four penalties. It was a great win last night and we did really well.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby charliepanayi » Thu Mar 15, 2012 9:49 am UTC

You sound like a stereotypically arrogant 'only supported them since 2005' Chelsea fan when you make dismissive statements like that about Barcelona.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Amie » Thu Mar 15, 2012 10:03 am UTC

I am not making dismissive statements about Barca. I love the team. I am just saying that we can do better than them. What happened wasn't the team's fault but it is what cost us our Cup. It was unfair of fucking Ovrebo. I was only talking about that. If you automatically associated that with me blaming Barca then you're the one sounding like the disillusioned fan. Oh wait, your previous post about Chelsea "stuffing it" also proves the same. We won and we put up a good fight. Get over it.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby Dream » Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:58 pm UTC

Considering Chelsea's form in all competitions, and Barcelona's form in all competitions, anyone saying Barca need the referee's help putting away Chelsea is delusional. Chelsea's defence might have been stellar yesterday, but suggesting that any seriously top flight team might need four gimmes from the ref just to be in with a shout? I agree with Charlie, you're speaking as a fan, and you don't realise it.
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Re: Actual (Association) Football Talk.

Postby charliepanayi » Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:02 pm UTC

Amie wrote:I am not making dismissive statements about Barca. I love the team. I am just saying that we can do better than them. What happened wasn't the team's fault but it is what cost us our Cup. It was unfair of fucking Ovrebo. I was only talking about that. If you automatically associated that with me blaming Barca then you're the one sounding like the disillusioned fan. Oh wait, your previous post about Chelsea "stuffing it" also proves the same. We won and we put up a good fight. Get over it.


Firstly, that game was three years ago now, and Barcelona have got a lot better since then, and Chelsea have probably got worse (as their current league position suggests). Secondly, that game has no relevance on this one. Thirdly, that referee did every non-Chelsea/Man Utd supporter in the world a favour with his ineptitude by preventing a second successive Chelsea v Man Utd European Cup final. And finally, you were robbed of a football match? Join the queue! It's a very long one.

The fact is you suggest that Barcelona will need the referee's help to beat Chelsea this time, how is that not dimissing them?
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