Friday, August 30, 2013

Champions League Draw, Podcast, Super Cup, Weekend Clashes, Friday MLS Forecast

Right! Happy Friday. Let's get right into it.
Here are the groups:

2013 - 2014 UEFA Champions League draw

Group A
Manchester UnitedShakhtar Donetsk
Bayer LeverkusenReal Sociedad
Group B
Real MadridJuventus
GalatasarayFC Copenhagen
Group C
BenficaParis Saint-Germain
Group D
Bayern MunichCSKA Moscow
Manchester CityViktoria Plzen
Group E
BaselSteaua Bucharest
Group F
Borussia DortmundNapoli
Group G
PortoAtletico Madrid
Zenit St. PetersburgAustria Vienna
Group H
BarcelonaAC Milan

Let's break it down, shall we? And we'll go ahead and christen Group G "The Group of Yawn."

Kaka. Remember him? 2007 World Player of the Year? Well, although he belongs to Jesus, he says he'd like to leave Real Madrid. They bought him four years ago for £56 million. Check these stats from his time with Real. Yikes.
Appearances: 120
Cost per game: £466,666
Goals: 29
Cost per goal: £1,931,034
Games to goals ratio: 4.14
Honours: La Liga (2011-12), Copa del Rey (2010-11), Spanish Supercup (2012)

Jimbo returned with a Podcast yesterday and it's quite enjoyable. He and the lads (Sid Lowe, Barry Glendenning, Raphael Honigstein) are talking Celtic, Arsenal/Tottenham, Liverpool/Manchester United, and more.

What else? Oh, yes. Samuel Eto'o'o'o'o'o'o will ply his trade this season at Stamford Bridge. Let's see...Makhachkala, Dagestan or London, England? We'll take London, thank you very much. Sticking with transfers that have actually happened, perhaps a segue to The Joy of Six is in order? Today it's Record Transfers.
Why the sad face? Oh, because you cost Betis a world-record £21.5million and you sucked? OK.
There is a match of note today. It's called the Euro Super Cup and it pits the winner of the Europa League (Chelsea) against the winner of the Champions League (Bayern Munich). It's really only interesting because of Jose and Pep, the new gaffers. Former allies now enemies. Of something like that. Anyway, here's a preview.

Shit. The Mill. Plus One. The Latest. Phew.

On to the weekend! Super Sunday will have all of us feeling like this because of the fixtures on the calendar. First up is Liverpool vs. Manchester United. After that is the North London Derby between Arsenal and Tottenham. Here's all the crap you'll need to know about everything tomorrow and Sunday:

North London Derby: Tactical Battle

The Forecast is back! Sweet! Looks a bit hot, though.

In Italy this weekend, Lazio's trip to Juventus appears to be the most interesting match. Genoa vs. Fiorentina could also entertain. Here's a preview.

In Spain this weekend, Barcelona's trip to Valencia appears to be the most interesting match. Real Sociedad vs. Atletico Madrid could also entertain. Here's a preview.

OK, that'll have to do. Have a great holiday weekend. Try not to Labor too hard...


Thursday, August 29, 2013

Wahl & Drogba, Celtic Drama, Champions League Draw, Arsenal Sign Player, Paolo Bandini on Spurs' Lamela

Ahoy!! Celtic pulled off one hell of a comeback last night at Celtic Park to secure a spot in the Champions League proper. Neil Lennon's lads needed an extra time strike to do it, but their three goals and clean sheet ensured passage to the Group Stage. Milan and Real Sociedad also advanced. The big draw is later this afternoon. Here's a complete breakdown of how it could go down when it goes down.

Meanwhile, in London, Tottenham have moved to replace Gareth Bale with Erik Lamela. Not content to be The Next Totti, Lamela will now be The Next Bale. Paolo Bandini takes a look at Spurs' new €30 Million Man.

And, not to be outdone by their neighbors, Arsenal have finally splashed the cash, and are certain to make their supporters overjoyed with a new mega super-exciting signing of their own. Errrr...oh. Free? Oh.

Grant Wahl interviewed Didier Drogba. Instead of saying, "No fucking way in hell would I play in that crap American league MLS," Drogba said he's open to the possibility. Wow.

Tim Vickery is talking Brazil. And how they play. And history. And things of that nature.

The What's In Your Wallet? Cup draw was drawn yesterday and it provided a lovely fixture in the form of Manchester United vs. Liverpool. Evra vs. Suarez. You can feel the tension in the room.

Here's a good one. Messi is actually a dick. Seriously. Read.

Let's finish with Sid Lowe. How will Bale handle the Real Madrid dressing room? Will he shower with a towel? Go Full Monty? Drop the soap? It's all about building relationships, says Sid.

Catch you later,


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Champions League, Kasey Keller, What's In Your Wallet?

So, the Champions League qualifying stage is almost complete. One more round of matches today and then the draw for the group stage is tomorrow. Arsenal had little trouble with Fenerbahce as Aaron Ramsey scored twice in the 2 - 0 win. A torn hamstring for Podolski and some knocks to Ramsey and Jack Wilshire took the shine off the victory, however. Meanwhile, Fenerbahce have been banned from Europe for two years for match fixing and it has nothing to do with how bad Dirk Kuyt and Raul Meireles suck. Back to that draw, though. How exactly does it work?

Sexo es vida...
Grant Wahl was in Seattle last weekend to check out the newest craze sweeping The Emerald City. Clint Dempsey Mania!

The League Cup is back in England. Liverpool needed extra time to defeat Knots Landing. Andy Hunter was at Anfield. There was controversy in Birmingham after Yeovil scored in bizarre circumstancesHere's a brief review of all the action.

Kasey Keller used to live in a castle. With a moat. He was the first American to play in La Liga. He used to have hair. He talks here.

Sticking with Yanks, Landon Donovan signed a Big Deal with L.A. No surprise there.

Sale. Rail. Bale!
Over and out.


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Paolo, Rafael, Phil, Sid, Tim Times Two, Scrappy Old Trafford

Let's begin with Brazil 2014. Those of us at SSN Headquarters will not be attending. You'd have to be mad to deal with that mayhem and give money to the FIFA World Governing Body. Tim Vickery outlines just how expensive a trip to Brazil would be. Tim also bounces south to examine El Superclasico between Boca and River in BA. Well played, luv.

Hey! Pay attention. Right. Phil Ball. One of the best writers you'll ever be able to enjoy when it comes to the world of El Foot. It's Tuesday, so that means we get his column. This week he's talking about, well, who the fuck cares, he's writing and we're reading. Do it. Do it! Meanwhile, his partner in crime Sid Lowe is writing about El Che. Sorry, Elche.

Over in Italy, we've got more Serie A to check out. And here's Paolo Bandini with even more. Love it. He's talking Luca, of course.

Manchester United vs. Chelsea turned out to be a bit of a slop fest. There wasn't much cohesion to the proceedings and it finished scoreless. And Fernando Torres is still awful, in case you were wondering. They actually talked about it. The Media, we mean. They had five points. Daniel Taylor was at Old Trafford, as well. Who was Man of the Match? Why, it was Shrek himself. Phil McNulty looks at the situation with Wayne Rooney. And here's a review of all the weekend action now that it's officially complete.

We missed Gabriele Marcotti's Monday Musings yesterday. Sorry. Here you go. He's talking Real/Barca, Napoli, and more.

Did you learn anything from this weekend in MLS. Anything? Bloody useless. Here are Five Things We Learned.

Raphael Honigstein. Hello! Bundesliga Expect Extraordinaire. Let's rock it.

The Transfer Window remains ajar. Here's what The Mill is churning out. Here's your Plus One.

That's going to have to do it. There's some Champions League action this afternoon but you already knew that.


Monday, August 26, 2013

Michael Bradley to Sunderland?, Monday Night Football, Verona Beat Milan, Chelsea Get Black Eyed Pea

36 & Still Alive and Kicking
Happy Monday! Let's begin in the United Kingdom. Soldado scored from the spot again as Spurs beat Swansea, Liverpool and Mr. Sturridge won at Villa, and Arsenal won at Fulham. The shocker of the weekend went down down in Wales where Cardiff City knocked off Manchester City 3-2. Crisis for San Pellegrino already? Here are some facts. And here's all the action from Saturday.

You want some points? How many? Ten? Done.

Monday Night Football! Manchester United vs. Chelsea. David Moyes vs. Jose Mourinho. Wayne Rooney vs. Wayne Rooney. Here we go, people! Catch it if you can. It's early season insanity. Turn your tube to NBCSN at 3pm EDT to catch the action.

Serie A. Italy. Luca Toni. Who? How old is that guy? 36 years of age, actually. Why do we care? He scored twice for Verona as they shocked Milan. Elsewhere, Inter won, a Carlos Tevez goal secured a road win for Juve, and Roma also won away from home. Here's a link to all the reports. Here are Five Things We Learned from Week One.

Monday MLS Breakdown is back! The big news was Clint Dempsey's home opener in Seattle. How did that go? Find out here.

The Mill is almost done. One more week and we can all chill the fuck out. Here's your Plus One.

La Liga was also in action over the weekend. No real surprises. Hit the slideshow if you wish.

Finally, this is what a Seattle record attendance of 67,385 for Clint Dempsey’s home debut looks like.