Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Death to the Europa League?, Big Phil in Brazil, More Americans Abroad, More Midweek Action, Chelsea "Regrets"

Good Morning,

There really are a lot of Yanks playing abroad. Guys in Mexico, Denmark, Sweden, and Austria. Guys like Charlie Davies. Apparently, Chuck came on as an 82nd-minute substitute and was sent off with a straight red card in his last match for Randers. Randers is Denmark's sixth-largest city, by the way. We digress. Davies got bumped into the corner flag by a defender while fighting for the ball and retaliated by pushing the defender down from behind before lunging at him leading with his head while both were on the ground following the tackle. Easy there, buddy.

Sorry Charlie. Davies gets the boot in Denmark.
'Arry Redknapp is back on the touchline. Not in Ukraine, as we had hoped, but over in St. John's Wood. Arry's men supplied us with a drab scoreless draw against Sunderland. In the other match, Villa won 1-0 thanks to a late header from their prodigy Christian Benteke. Once again, Darren Bent was left out completely. Not even on the bench. Aston Villa paid £24m for the guy (the club-record signing), most likely because he has scored 102 Premier League goals. After the match, Paul Lambert, the Villa manager, was asked a total of 22 questions about Bent's absence. And we learned absolutely nothing. Bizarre.

With those two fixtures out of the way we can look at what this afternoon has on offer. And it's quite lovely, indeed. Chelsea host Fulham, Tottenham host Liverpool, Everton host Arsenal, Manchester United welcome West Ham, Wigan welcome Manchester City, West Brom go to Swansea, Stoke host Newcastle, and Southampton welcome Norwich City. Lawro has some predictions. He correctly called a draw for QPR/Sunderland and win for Villa (so did Paul Merson) so let's see how he does today. Here's a preview of all the matches.

Some rather big news today from our friends (cough) over at UEFA. It would seem that Platini and co. are considering terminating the Europa League in favor of extending the Champions League from 32 to 64 teams. So, make of that what you will. We'll worry about it in 2014. In the meantime we'll look forward to Manchester United vs. Videoton FC.

Big Phil! You missed him, right? Word on the street is Brazil will name Luiz Felipe Scolari as their new national team manager later today. He took them to the 2002 title. Let's see how 2014 goes. We'll throw in a touching photo of him with Ronaldo when he headed up the Portuguese side.

Speaking of Ronaldo, the excellent Jonathan Wilson has a simple question: Is Cristiano Ronaldo a strength or a weakness to a team?

In other news, Chelsea "regrets" the Clattenburg incident. Really? Idiots.

Like Darren Bent, Wesley Sneijder is not playing. Unlike Darren Bent, we know why. It's simply because Inter Milan want him to take a 30% wage cut and he refuses. Like Jonathan Wilson above, James Horncastle wonders if Inter are better without him.

It would be a bit odd if we could go a few days without something about racism, right? Thankfully, the police have arrested the Sunderland twat who "allegedly" aimed a racist 'monkey' gesture at Lukaku last weekend. Judging from the photographic evidence, there's nothing alleged about it.

That's your lot. Enjoy the afternoon matches if you can.



No comments: