Sunday, April 11, 2010

Barca wins El Clasico and Roma top of Serie A

This weekend has defined the potential champions of La Liga, Serie A, and the Premiership. Barca pull ahead of Real Madrid in El Clasico, Roma overtake Inter Milan to possibly end Inter's scudetto run, and Manchester United drop points at Blackburn giving Chelsea a chance to run even further away with first. Some exciting stuff...

Sports News - April 11, 2010Real Madrid - Barcelona: EL CLASICO

The defining game of the SPL on steroids took place at the Santiago Bernabeu this weekend, and although plenty thought that Real could pull off a win (even I did), Barcelona dominated the galactic match. While some may chant Messi's name, or Pedro's (the two goal-scorers), I proudly chant Xavi's name, the Spaniard who for me is the best midfielder currently playing. After setting up Messi with a sublime chip in the 33rd which the Argentinean controlled and coolly slotted home, Xavi proceeded to dominate the match with what could be called a "buttery" display of passing. Pique had little trouble containing Ronaldo, and Real Madrid had trouble creating and finishing the few chances they had. After the interval it was my favorite midfielder that did all the tough work again, Xavi played a wonderfully weighted ball to Pedro who finished past Casillas, crushing any Real hopes of a comeback. Although Barcelona didn't dominate the match to the extent they did at Arsenal in the first half of the first leg, or other matches, the Catalans realized that much wasn't needed to beat a rather disorganized Real Madrid. Barcelona now take first spot in La Liga, three points ahead of Los Blancos, but basically four due to the head to head result being in Barca's favor.

AS Roma vs Atalanta Bergamo

In Italy, Roma are top of the Serie A after taking advantage of Inter Milan's 2-2 draw at Fiorentina, Inter have a tough schedule ahead and will face Fiorentina away again in midweek, then go against Juventus, followed by Barcelona in the following midweek. Roma on the other hand got a 2-1 win over Atlanta mostly thanks to Atlanta's goalkeeper Consigli not being able to hold an average shot by Vucninc. The Roman's doubled soon after with a header from Cassetti, but they risked being scored on twice by Tiribocchi who could only tuck home one goal. AC Milan haven't taken advantage of Inter Milan's slip up yet again, they were only able to draw 2-2 against Catania, who to their merit played a great match, but AC Milan came back from two down in the second half thanks to a double by Boriello. Bologna Lazio was filled with fantastic goals, and the match ended with the grand scoreline of 3-2 for Lazio, this is surely a match to check out the highlights for because some fantastic long range goals were scored by both sides.

Sports News - April 11, 2010In England, while Chelsea advance to the final of the FA Cup after beating Aston Villa 3-0 at a slippery Wembley pitch, Manchester United were only able to draw 0-0 against Blackburn, without Rooney United were lifeless, and the chances were few and wasted. There were two other 0-0's, Liverpool vs Fulham ended with a goalless draw, and so did Wolverhampton vs. Stoke, and a match which could've ended 0-0 for West Ham was saved by Ilan's goal as the Hammers won 1-0 against Sunderland. Manchester City look comfortable in fourth spot after thrashing Birmingham 5-1 as Tottenham lost to Portsmouth in the FA Cup semi-final 2-0, letting Pompy go on to the final against Chelsea. Another big scoreline affected the relegation zone, Burnley came back from a goal down against Hull City to win 4-1, and the last goal was a peach by Elliott, a wonderful curling free kick which nestled itself into the far corner.

REAL MARID VS FC BARCELONAIn Spain, Atletico Madrid continue their erratic season after losing 3-0 away against Espanyol, although they aren't performing well in the league, Atletico are doing well in the Europa League and are set to play Liverpool in the semi's. Valencia lost against Mallorca 3-2 as the gap between the two teams is only 5 points now, Mallorca are looking for Champions League football next year, and this result was important for their chances. Sevilla drawn on points with the Islanders after beating Malaga 2-1 thanks to a late goal by Lolo.

What do you think of this week's results? Was Xavi as buttery as I thought he was, and is he the best midfielder in the world for you? Comment below!


  1. Just posted up another Minute+10 podcast at you should come take a listen I'm sure you'll enjoy the discussion on AS Roma, Ranieri and Jose Mourinho...

  2. Very interesting, if you could actually comment on the article and it's content that would be better. I don't mind people advertising and putting links up, but please some feedback/response to the article's content would be much appreciated.

  3. I am real in 2 minds over West Ham. I think Zola is excellent and a really genuine nice guy. But the 2 chairmen are idiots and I would love to see them go down. Nice to Ranieri do well at Roma as well.

  4. I have to sort of agree with you on the West Ham point, I think Zola is a nice guy, but I don't think he has what it takes to be a worldclass coach.

    Thanks for the comment

  5. I disagree and believe if Zola studies hard he could easily be one of the best coaches around.
    Roma have made me very proud , just to see Inter suffer can light up a Milans face.

  6. Could it be that Gianfranco Zola is TOO nice a guy to be a top coach? Look at all the world class managers....are any of them 'nice guys'? Perhaps with the exception of Pep you'd have to say no. I think sometimes players need a bit of fear to push them up a notch or two in terms of performance. Still, like most people, I hope Zola succeeds.

    Interesting to see Inter have fallen behind in the race for Serie A. How has Eto'o found his first season in Italy? Is he as highly-rated over there as Zlatan? Looked like he's tailed off a bit after a strong start. Cheers for the article!

  7. I think that like every young managers career they will find the going tough. Zola inherited alot of deadwood and the chairmen seem to be blaming him for it. On another note and speaking about another coach I have a huge respect for: Claudio Ranieri. Has there ever been a coach who has been treated so bad by so many clubs?

  8. It's probably true that Zola is too nice, but I also think that he lacks something tactically. Although West Ham can sometimes play wonderful football, they are mentally weak, often unable to come back from a goal down.

    Eto'o was very highly rated when he came to Inter Milan, many noticed his prolific goal-scoring in Barcelona and expected the same in Italy. He was doing very well in the beginning, but after coming back from the African Cup of Nations, he was very selfish, (probably because when he plays for Cameroon he has the ball much more than in Inter Milan). This and the added pressure of Pandev pushing for a starting spot made his form dip a bit, but now he is really starting to come back with some great performances.

    And as for Ranieri, he was so badly treated by Juventus, I just wish he was taking the title away from them. He's great at putting out organized sides and he would be fantastic as the Italian NT coach.

    Thanks for all the comments!



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