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Category: Sport

Full English

Full English

What a week for the Premier League! All four finalists in the Champions and Europa League are English clubs: Liverpool v Spurs; Arsenal v Chelsea. This is the first time that one country has provided all four finalists, and is really pissing off fans from certain continental clubs (especially Milan and Juventus)!

The surprise omissions from these four are both Manchester clubs. City is surprising, as they are (grudgingly) being recognised as the best team in the world right now; United, less so as they are a complete shambles at the moment.

Who cares? It’s been a great week to watch some thrilling and dramatic matches. Liverpool and Spurs achieving “impossible” comebacks; Arsenal clinically dispatching Valencia at the Mestalla; and Chelsea going through on penalties against a very impressive Eintracht Frankfurt side. Thank gods that boring Spanish domination has ended.

Alternative Coverage

Alternative Coverage

Must say, I’ve been impressed by the quality of reporting of the two Champions League semi-finals by the New York Times (apart from their using the 3rd person singular for verbs associated with the team names). UK papers are often very similar in their reporting style and content, but the NYT has provided a refreshingly different angle.

Addendum
Perhaps there’s an explanation for this. The following morning, BBC Breakfast had on a NYT sports journalist: Rory Smith, English, who’s their “chief soccer correspondent” and based in Manchester…

What a comeback!

What a comeback!

After being (undeservedly) beaten 3-0 by Barcelona last Wednesday, the impossible has happened: a comeback greater than that in Istanbul in 2005 – and Liverpool again! I watched both, but this latest one was just unbelievable (a word used by all players – and Klopp – in post-match interviews).

The best I expected was a 2-0 or 3-1 win for Liverpool, as Barcelona should have been able to control the match, even in a hostile Anfield atmosphere – especially as Liverpool were without Salah, Firmino, and Keita.

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COYRAWW!

COYRAWW!

Sheffield United 2 Ipswich Town 0 – and the mighty Blades are on their way to the Premiership! Unless, of course, Leeds can get a GD of +14 in their final two games… One of which is against Aston Villa, who are on a 10-game winning streak…

It’s been a long wait, but 2 years after winning League One with 100 points, and one year of consolidation in the Championship, the Red and White Wizards are back where they belong.

Random World Cup Reflections

Random World Cup Reflections

Having watched most first-round and a few second-round matches, I think it’s fair to say that no team has been outstanding. So many defensive errors, forwards with wayward shots, and listless midfielders. England have probably looked the best (albeit for only 25 minutes). Russia a big surprise, though: thank gods they have no history of drug-taking in their sports or else it might raise suspicions…

Good performance by Croatia last night to beat a very poor Argentina. Team looks solid, so no hope of an appearance by our local boys Hathersic, Burbic, and Stanic. Maybe Spinic and Futbolpic will get a look in.