Arsenal v Manchester United Semi Final no. 2!!!

A wonder strike from the World’s best footballer helped Manchester United become the first English side to beat Porto at home and go through to the Semi Final of the Champions league.

The Red devils slayed the dragons in their own home ground after Ronaldo scored a stunning strike from all of 40 yards to give United the cushion they needed to sit back and absorb any attack from the dragons.

It was a classic European job by Fergie’s men.

They will now face Arsenal in the semifinal after Arsenal comfortably defeated Villareal by 3 goals.

Wonderkid Theo Walcott opened the scoring after just 10 mins with a delightfull chip over keeper Diego Lopez. Walcott was a constant thorn in the right side of the midfield troubling Capdevilla on more than one ocassions…

Adebayor scored the second at the hour mark and after the next few mins Walcott won a penalty for Arsenal. The decision was dubious and Villareal players protested to no avail.

Robin Van Persie converted from the spot to make it 3-0. Arsenal are comfortably through.

Once again we have an English side assured place in the Champions league final and who knows we might have another all English Final…

Great game by Arsenal and Good European display by the Red Devils.

Catch you all at the Semi finals again!!!

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Vidic & co. let the devils down

It was a sorry scoreline and a sorry performance for Manchester United against Liverpool. I mean this is a team that might have had the most 1-0 victories of the last two seasons. And after scoring the first goal off a Ronaldo penalty I was sure they’d seal the match off even if they didnt score another goal. How wrong was i gonna be…

Coz Liverpool did manage to bring things even through a superb Torres goal. He is one of those players you want to hate as they are not in the team you support but cant help like cause of the sheer quality they show on the field.

The ball was cleared under pressure from the Liverpool defense and Vidic who should’ve cleared the ball at the first chance he got, mistimed the header and let torres in on a one on one with Van der sar who could do much to the aptly put ball in the corner of the Man United goal.

Torres gets away from a struggling Vidic to score Kop's first goal
Torres gets away from a struggling Vidic to score Kop’s first goal

Next it was Evra’s turn to let his team down. He slid in with a tackle which saw none of the ball but instead some of Gerrard’s leg. Down went Gerrard and the referee pointed out to the spot. Gerrard misses quite rarely from the spot and sure was not gonna miss one in a match of this magnitude.

Evra brings down Gerrard to give Liverpool a penalty and a 1-2 lead
Evra brings down Gerrard to give Liverpool a penalty and a 1-2 lead
Gerrard's joy knows no bounds as he kisses the Camera!!!

Gerrard's joy knows no bounds as he kisses the Camera!!!

Next Vidic is the culprit again. As he brings Torres down just outside the box to not just be sent off but also allow Fabio Aurelio to place a perfectly taken free kick to give Liverpool the 3-1 lead and an extra person’s advantage.

Aurelio slots in the perfect free kick after Vidic is sent off
Aurelio slots in the perfect free kick after Vidic is sent off

Finally Dossena scored his second late goal in so many games for Liverpool to finish the match off at an incredible 1-4 scoreline after Ferdinand’s faliure to clear the ball. Dossena’s finishing is much better than Bendtnar and he’s just a left back.

Manchester united supporters leave the ground as liverpool take a 4-1 lead
Manchester united supporters leave the ground as liverpool take a 4-1 lead

Vidic has arguably been the best player for United this season and he didnt look half that player in this game. He was completely overshadowed by Torres in this match and looked a little scared of the striker to be frank.

That goes for the whole of United back four. The United defense has been the best in the whole of Barclays Premier League this season. But they never turned up in this match. Maybe they were tired with the sheer number of matches that they’ve had to play in the last couple of weeks. Maybe the mind games that Gerrard, Torres, Rafa and co. were playing got to them. Or maybe this was one of those off days that every person has once in a while. Now that the damage is done, i hope its the latter. Lets hope it was a one off day that the United defense had and that they will bounce off well next week against Fulham.

I have a strong feeling that the team will bounce back after receiving the hairdryer treatment from Sir Alex Ferguson. Fulham will be the poor team that bears the brunt.

 Buck up Manchester United…Falling is no evil, falling and not standing up sure is:)

Whether Manchester United should buy Tevez or not?

This question would have come in Sir Alex Fergusons mind many a times this season especially after spending more than 30 million pounds on Berbatev in the summer who essentially plays at the same position.

Well if someone were to ask me, i would say, yes definitely.

Tevez was stupendous for Manchester United in their double last season. the understanding between him, Rooney and Ronaldo brought the best out of everyone and Manchester united were scoring goals for fun demolishing opponents on their way to both Premier league and European glory…

This Season on the other hand they have not looked the same and have struggled. Berbatov’s performances though good have not been consistent and so  flamboyent as to warrant him a starting place ahead of Tevez whose dedication and committment is second to none on the field for United.

Berbatov just walks in the side and gets a starting 11 place? brutally unfair on Tevez who scored 19 goals last season at a time when Ronaldo was having an exceptional year,  going on to score 42 goals in all competitions. Thus the 19 scored by Tevez was definitely good enough given that his role was more of a creater than scorer last season and in the abscence of a tall striker like Berba last season Rooney played that role and Tevez played a lot deeper creating space for his other high profile team-mates.

Lets look at what are the factors that could influence SAF’s decision to retain the services of Tevez beyond this season.

  1. High Price: – Well some might consider the 32 million price tag out on Tevez as high, but is it really high these days compared to the inflated prices doing the rounds in the transfer window. for e.g.  – Bellamy – 14 Mil, Wilson Palacios – 14 mil, Lassana Diarra – 20 mil and so on. Also Fergi spent 20 odd million pounds to secure the services of Nani last summer and Nani has hardly featured this season at all. Also 30 + million for Berbatov clearly means Tevez can easily be measured at par and the benefit Manchester United have in the Tevez case is they have already paid some 10 million pounds of the 32 Million required to buy Tevez. So 22 million for Tevez really doesnt seem that bad.
  2. Formation: – Well the only true argument here is that there is no way for Fergie to accomodate all 4 of his star players and since he has already paid mega bucks for Berbatov he doesnt want to spend another 22 million for a squad player. Fergie can always use Tevez and Berbatov on a rotation basis and having someone of Tevez’s quality in the side will keep both Rooney and especially Berbatov (Who is deemed by many as a lazy player) on their Toes. Injury lay-0ffs are something no team can avoid and Rooney has recently been lost for a few weeks to injury. Tevez can come in as a seamless transition in such cases. Also for a team like Man U who aims for glory in all competitions it enters, Squad depth can prove so much critical especially in the knock out stages of the Champions League.
  3. Lack of Quality: – Another question that Fergie may have is that he may not consider Tevez to be the same quality or level as the other 3 stars in his sqaud. But that argument has been put to rest even before it started by Tevez’s performance last seaosn at Man U and the season before that at West Ham, where he almost single handedly saved West Ham from relegation. Everybody knows that when Tevez loses possession of the ball he runs to all the ends of the field to get the ball back and to restore possession. His energy levels on the field are unmatched. He may not have the technical expertise as Ronaldo or Rooney, but his Hard-working skills make up for most of it.

All in all i think letting Tevez go and replacing him with anyone who would take time to adjust to the pace of the premier league and the type of football Man U play would be a big gamble fergie should avoid. If funds are indeed a problem, Man U should sell the young prodigy Fraiser Campbell for around 8-10 millions with a buy back clause and use the same funds to buy/retain Tevez.

Given enough starts in the premier league Tevez will proove even this season how important a member he is of the Man U squad.

More later… till then, Keep smiling…

 

EPL Preview for Big 4 (18th and 19th October)

 

Middlesbrough

vs

Chelsea

Chelsea go into the game with a bunch of injuries, but will be boosted by the news that captain John Terry has been declared fit for the match and is likely to play a part. Blues gaffer Luiz Felipe Scolari will still be without Michael Essien who is out with a major injury, Didier Drogba with the knee ligament problem, and Ricardo Carvalho out with knee injury too and Michael Ballack who has been ruled-out for three weeks after undergoing surgery.

Middlesbrough have managed to ensue just nine points from their seven games so far and at present lie in 12th place in The Premiership, but Southgate’s men may be aware that they have a chance of a point against an injury-riddled Chelsea.

Arsenal

vs

Everton

In their last two matches, Arsenal have lost to Premiership new-comers Hull City at the Emirates and then managed to scuff a draw against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light, and will be without captain William Gallas (hamstring), Bacary Sagna (knee) and Niklas Bendtner (ankle) for the visit of Everton, while long-term absentees Tomas Rosicky and Eduardo are still missing. However, Wenger is set to include Abou Diaby for the first time this season, and Cesc Fabregas is set to feature, despite breaking his nose on International duty for Spain in midweek.

Everton are without a win since their 3-2 victory over Stoke City at the Britannia Stadium on September 14th and David Moyes is without Tim Cahill, who is still unavailable through suspension and will have to wait until the last moment to see if captain Phil Neville recovers from a hamstring injury, while Lars Jacobsen could feature if the defender shakes off his shoulder injury.

Liverpool

vs

Wigan Athletic

In the second of Saturday’s North-West derbies Liverpool, who are without Spanish striker Fernando Torres and Holland winger Ryan Babel, will be hoping to continue their unbeaten record this season.

Steve Bruce’s Latics, who have eight points from their opening seven games, lost at home to Middlesbrough before going into the international break, and may be without the in-form Amr Zaki, with Emile Heskey facing a late fitness-test, but Steve Bruce’s men cannot be underestimated on the road, but face a tough test against Liverpool, who feel that this season they are finally proper Premiership title contenders.

Interesting will be to see how Heskey plays against Liverpool after declaring openly that it would be lovely to go back to his former club. The manager Steve Bruce though thinks that Heskey will be choking his England Career if he does so.

Manchester United

vs

West Bromwich Albion

After a slow start to their Premiership season, Manchester United are presently lying in 8th place in the league, with a game in hand. Manager Sir Alex Ferguson will be ecstatic with Wayne Rooney’s inspirational form of late, with the England International scoring four goals in the World Cup qualifiers against Kazakhstan and Belarus.

The Baggies are just one point behind United in the Premier League and have made a firm start to the campaign after promotion from The Championship last season. West Brom go into this clash on the back of two Premier League wins (against Middlesbrough and Fulham) and are comfy in 9th place, but it would be a windfall to get any result from their trip to Old Trafford.

Lets hope Cristiano Ronaldo comes back to his scoring form… Keep checking for Results as soon as they are out..:)

Overhead goal by Coruch this weekend

The Overhead kick which is also called as the bicycle kick, chalaca, chilena, or scissors kick. It is a move in football which is made by throwing the body up into the air, making a shearing movement with the legs to get one leg high overhead to reach the ball (in original head height), which gets kicked backward over the layer’s head. One of the all time greatest footballer Pele described the kick as “not easy to do”. (Wikipedia)

Legendary footballer Pele's signed Overhead Kick poster

Legendary footballer Pele's signed Overhead Kick Poster

Seeing the stupendous Overhead kick goal by Peter Crouch this weekend, Many might have been surprised, though I wasnt too surprised. Having seen Crouch score in a similar fashion on 2 other ocassions it was very obvious to see him try to score another one similarly and also succeed in scoring the same.

Peter Crouch has always been very ambitious about his Goals. You can see him trying the most impossible goals on the field. These Goals look very nice if converted which is usually like 1 out of 10 times if not less…But when it is not pulled off properly it looks kinda foolish and you may get injured if you have a bad fall while trying the overhead kick.

Just some pics showing some very good overhead kicks and the players who are good at pulling it off..

Crouch scoring with an extremely acrobatic overhead kick against Galatasaray

Crouch scoring with an extremely acrobatic overhead kick against Galatasaray

Croch scoring with an overhead kick agaisnt Bolton during his Liverpool days

Crouch scoring with an overhead kick agaisnt Bolton during his Liverpool days

David Villa of Spain scoring with a stunning Overhead kick against minnows Liechtenstein

David Villa of Spain scoring with a stunning Overhead kick against minnows Liechtenstein

Brazilian Legend Rivaldo - The Master of the falling overhead kick scoring one against Valencia

Brazilian Legend Rivaldo - The Master of the falling overhead kick scoring one against Valencia

Former World Player of th eyear Ronaldinho scoring with a superb overhead kick against Athletico Madrid

Former World Player of the year Ronaldinho scoring with a superb overhead kick against Athletico Madrid

Tim Cahill scores from an unbelievable Overhead Kick to deny Chelsea all 3 points at stamford Bridge last season

Tim Cahill scores from an unbelievable Overhead Kick to deny Chelsea all 3 points at stamford Bridge last season

Ajax's Klass Jan Huntelaar scores from a superb Free kick

Ajax's Klass Jan Huntelaar scoring from a superb bicycle kick

World Player of the year contendor Cristiano Ronaldo attempting an overhead kick

World Player of the year contendor Cristiano Ronaldo attempting an overhead kick