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(UEFA)   Ajax/AC Milan, Celtic/Barcelona and Arsenal/Napoli are just a few of the games of today's Champions League matches. Who do you want to win? Who do you want to lose? Will today have any upsets? This is your discussion thread   (uefa.com) divider line 80
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131 clicks; posted to Sports » on 01 Oct 2013 at 2:43 PM (28 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-10-01 04:42:37 PM
With the cheapness of the foul, I'll be rooting against AC Milan for the rest of the league.
 
2013-10-01 05:07:02 PM

KaisertheCoyote: They already have decent chemistry when Cesc is a midfielder and Neymar is a forward. Today though Barcelona was continuing the "Cesc as a False 9" experiment and it's just not working. Cesc works best when they let him roam and play as more or less a #10, otherwise he's less than fantastic for Barcelona in my opinion.


And I guess that I've seen Cesc in the false 9 role working well with Xavi but not as well now with Neymar. It's not an unfamiliar role, not with Cesc and not with Barcelona. While it hasn't looked fluid yet, I don't know that I'd pull the plug on a system that seemed to work fine under Pep. Maybe Martino doesn't see it the same way as Pep did.
 
2013-10-01 05:26:26 PM
Goddamnit Broony. Our captain needs to learn to keep his temper under control. Decent play from a ten man Celtic tonight and sheer class from Samaras.
 
2013-10-01 05:31:25 PM

Gordon Bennett: Goddamnit Broony. Our captain needs to learn to keep his temper under control. Decent play from a ten man Celtic tonight and sheer class from Samaras.


It was a really soft red card. Maaaaybe a yellow, a warning would have been probably the most appropriate imho
 
2013-10-01 06:29:20 PM

SmackLT: Gordon Bennett: Goddamnit Broony. Our captain needs to learn to keep his temper under control. Decent play from a ten man Celtic tonight and sheer class from Samaras.

It was a really soft red card. Maaaaybe a yellow, a warning would have been probably the most appropriate imho


Oh, I agree with that but you still can't afford to take these chances.
 
2013-10-01 07:46:29 PM
In case anyone is reading this, in 45 minutes (830 EST) DC United kicks off against RSL in the US Open Cup final.  It's only on GOLTV so you'll probably have to stream it.
 
2013-10-02 01:48:44 AM

Langston: KaisertheCoyote: They already have decent chemistry when Cesc is a midfielder and Neymar is a forward. Today though Barcelona was continuing the "Cesc as a False 9" experiment and it's just not working. Cesc works best when they let him roam and play as more or less a #10, otherwise he's less than fantastic for Barcelona in my opinion.

And I guess that I've seen Cesc in the false 9 role working well with Xavi but not as well now with Neymar. It's not an unfamiliar role, not with Cesc and not with Barcelona. While it hasn't looked fluid yet, I don't know that I'd pull the plug on a system that seemed to work fine under Pep. Maybe Martino doesn't see it the same way as Pep did.


Well obviously the False 9 isn't new for Barcelona, and Cesc plays it with the Spanish National Team but the Spanish National Team=/= Barcelona. (I'm sure I don't have to tell you that though.) Their styles are pretty different, despite popular belief.

I've never been particularly impressed with Cesc as a False 9 for Barcelona, and I'm generally an overall fan of the guy. But he works best when he can shift into sort of a pseudo #10 spot and switch places with Messi. The Xavi role was a disaster for Cesc, he lacks the patience for it. To be honest, aside from the first few months, I thought Cesc was terrible under Guardiola, especially when he was forced to be a winger after Villa's injury.

Basically, he works best when Ineista isn't on the pitch and Barca's formation can look a little like this in attack.

Neymar                    Pedro/Sanchez
                   Messi
                                 Cesc

Xavi

                Busquets

Blahblah Barca's defense is so shait it's basically not worth mentioning them. (Was impressed with Bartra today though.)


Basically Cesc plays further up than Iniesta, who likes to sit a little deeper. He's more of a natural #10 than Iniesta is, or any of Barcelona's other players barring Messi. (Who's the perfect False 9, so why use him in any other position?)

But Cesc and Neymar lacked any chemistry, and even though Cesc is an option at False 9 I think they would have been better off playing Neymar centrally and playing someone like Tello who is fast and will actually shoot the ball on the left. Cesc killed SO many attacks, it was ridiculous.
 
2013-10-02 08:19:33 AM

SmackLT: Gordon Bennett: Goddamnit Broony. Our captain needs to learn to keep his temper under control. Decent play from a ten man Celtic tonight and sheer class from Samaras.

It was a really soft red card. Maaaaybe a yellow, a warning would have been probably the most appropriate imho


Except the Celtic player deliberately kicked out at Neymar. Deliberately kicking or punching etc is automatic expulsion (regardless of theatrics). Ref had a good view of it, decided it was intentional and acted accordingly. Had he not kicked out he would have got a yellow for the foul on its own.

Celtic played for a draw and failed. Ironically they actually could have won except for one great save by Valdes and one wayward shot.

Samara was man of the match for me (er MVP in your lingo I believe?)
 
2013-10-02 01:08:37 PM
Wasn't in yesterday; had to deal with my knees popping and a doctor visit.

Anyway. Prior to the bump, today's US-aired matches:

FSN: Juventus/Galatasaray
FS1: Shakhtar Donetsk/Manchester United
FS2: Manchester City/Bayern Munich
Fox Deportes: Real Madrid/FC Copenhagen
 
2013-10-02 01:52:30 PM
Also, this happened at Basel/Schalke for those unaware.

Greenpeace picked that match to protest Gazprom drilling in the Arctic, Gazprom being Schalke's shirt sponsor and Champions League partner. Caused a five-minute delay.
 
2013-10-02 02:18:52 PM
Just an FYI, DC United won the 100th US Open Cup for their 13th trophy, the highest total in all of MLS.  They are currently in last place and had to travel to Salt Lake to take on one of the best in the league.  A bit of a mirror of the FA Cup final in May with City losing 1-0 to Wigan.  Same scoreline last night.

So happy for the guys and so much fun to watch.  They also got a birth to the CONCACAF Champs League!
 
2013-10-02 02:45:59 PM
The crowd in Shakhtar smells blood in the water after the West Brom game. Dangerous game for Man Utd.
 
2013-10-02 02:52:36 PM
Dear God, the Shakhtar crowd is drowning out the COMMENTATORS now. That is farking loud.
 
2013-10-02 02:55:40 PM
How do you say "Suck it, sheik" in French?
 
2013-10-02 03:04:13 PM
WALBECK DEFIES THE CROWD!
 
2013-10-02 03:05:02 PM
Bayern up 1-0!
 
2013-10-02 03:05:04 PM
Blue side 0
Red Side 1
 
2013-10-02 03:07:09 PM
Good goal from Fellaini and Welbeck with a touch of luck.
 
2013-10-02 03:36:28 PM
So:

Halftime:

Bayer Leverkusen 1-0 Real Sociedad
Shakhtar Donetsk 0-1 Manchester United
Juventus 0-1 Galatasaray
Real Madrid 1-0 FC Copenhagen
RSC Anderlecht 0-1 Olympiakos
Paris Saint-Germain 3-0 Benfica
Manchester City 0-1 Bayern Munich

Full time from earlier:
CSKA Moscow 3-2 Viktoria Plzen
 
2013-10-02 03:59:00 PM
City gets caught sleeping, 2-0 Bayern!

City were looking dangerous too for the first time.
 
2013-10-02 04:01:59 PM
How do you say "Suck it, sheik" in Dutch?
 
2013-10-02 04:03:31 PM

marius2: City gets caught sleeping, 2-0 Bayern!

City were looking dangerous too for the first time.


And Robben, the Oldest Looking 29-year-old in the World, makes it 3-0.
 
2013-10-02 04:04:26 PM
Make that 3-0! Beautiful shot!
 
2013-10-02 04:28:04 PM
sphincter clinching time for the mancs.
 
2013-10-02 04:29:29 PM
Bayern doesn't feel the need to finish with eleven players.
 
2013-10-02 04:29:39 PM
Someone has added emotions to the Bayern-City game.

1:3, Bayern down to 10 after a red, City is starting to participate in the game
 
2013-10-02 04:39:21 PM
Yeah that actually got a bit worrisome there, glad Bayern kept it together.


and United with a draw? Oh this is a beautiful day!
 
2013-10-02 06:59:52 PM
Like I have said before, the worst thing that can happen for Manchester City is that the draw happens and they have to play European matches.

What a game from Bayern. Total domination in the midfield. They played something close to a 4-3-3 with Mueller as a False 9 (which I would have deemed a failure if he hadn't scored that totally Mueller-esque goal). Lahm, Schweinsteiger, and Kroos were totally dominate in the midfield. I had some concerns about Yaya Toure being a box-to-box midfielder being able to use his size (seriously, Yaya looks like he eats an entire moose for breakfast) to brush past Lahm but it didn't work.

Kroos was MOTM for me. Kept the tempo of the game going smooth, his passes were gorgeous, and he acted like a CM/#10 depending. I also liked Schweinsteiger in a more attacking role.

Rafinhahahaha was great on the right, but Robben plays better with Lahm. When Martinez is fit, I want him in that holding mid/defensive role that Lahm is in now.

I was a bit concerned that Bayern really were not creating enough chances in the first half. Lots of midfield domination, but no actual decent shots or anything that looked like it could be a goal. But whenever City had the ball they attacked like Velociraptors with their pressing game and won the ball back. City were chasing shadows the whole time.

Too early to call, but this Bayern team are different enough from last season to win the title again.
 
2013-10-02 11:19:33 PM

KaisertheCoyote: .


Great analysis! Teach me how to be like you, hah!
 
2013-10-03 02:33:48 AM

marius2: KaisertheCoyote: .

Great analysis! Teach me how to be like you, hah!


Cheers man! Haha the secret is to talk and read way too much about soccer. I used to read lots of tactical analysis stuff and occasionally wrote for a couple websites. Got me in contact with lots of great writers who I still keep in contact with, weirdly enough mostly through Twitter. (Got it to promote articles.)
 
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