AncalagonTheBlack

Football: Showdown Sunday

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Pretty crazy that Arsenal had four more points this year than last year when they finished 2nd. 

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43 minutes ago, l2 0 5 5 said:

A nice send off for JT.



Until you learn that he organised it himself. What an absolute fucking state of a man.

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And Sunderland agreed to kick the ball out to let it happen. Should get a points deduction for spot fixing next season. At least the honour guard took so long it will go down as an ignominious 28th minute sub in the records book.

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3 hours ago, Mark Antony said:

Personally hate that mentality. Some awesome fucking games come out of Europa and United could get CL cause of it.

I agree with you 100%.

Without even getting into the debate on it being unsportsmanlike, the whole "Europa League is shit" approach is the reason why English teams were at risk of losing the fourth Champions League spot. It's a good thing Liverpool reached the finals last season and United have a shot at winning it this season. Hopefully, second-tier English teams follow suit.

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4 hours ago, polishgenius said:



Until you learn that he organised it himself. What an absolute fucking state of a man.

Yeah just saw this. That's embarrassing. I thought it was odd when they said he was coming off at 26 minutes. I get the ideology behind it but for christ's sake is that really all he wanted to play? The guy has been riding the pine all year and he wants to come off before he breaks a sweat. Eh, whatever. Do you remember him more for his triumphs or failures? He has a helluva lot of failures when you think about it. CL penalty kick resulting in grass stain ass, missed the 2012 CL final, the whole deal with Anton Ferdinand and Wayne Bridge. Like I said earlier, I enjoyed the way he played but there's no question the man is a deuche.  

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Relief, then, for Liverpool.  Probably for the football media cabal too: although Liverpool imploding is always good press for them since Michael Thomas, and especially since Gerrard's slip and the Palace 3-3, they're more invested right now in the narrative of Wenger's tenuous grip, which will now carry them through the cup final and into the following week.

Impressively high points total by the top 5 this year: 93, 86, 78, 76, 75.  I doubt any prior season exceeds that aggregate points haul by for the top 5, although it may just be recency bias in my memory.  A lot more wins this year by the top teams, not just against the relegated teams, resulting in the massive gap in the table and the compression from mid-table to just above relegation. 

Once again, the PL is depressingly competitive from the POV of outside challengers.  Leicester got the miracle last year, aided by big slumps at all the wealthiest clubs, but City, Chelsea & United all spent big (and will again) and upgraded their managers, Spurs continued to develop their once-in-a-generation crop of young talent (manager included) before money splits them up, and Liverpool made a really decent fist of it for half the season before being hauled back by the reality that they had absolutely nothing outside the first XI.  It'll be a big challenge for Liverpool to stay in the top four, never mind win a title.  

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7 hours ago, Iskaral Pust said:

Impressively high points total by the top 5 this year: 93, 86, 78, 76, 75.  I doubt any prior season exceeds that aggregate points haul by for the top 5, although it may just be recency bias in my memory.

Yes,at one point in time anywhere between 65-70 points could get you CL.It's much tougher now.

Still, Klopp has done well in his first full season.He took us from 8th to 4th and CL.I think that's progress.He;s done better than 3 other recent managers in their first year:


Rafa Benitez: 58 points (5th)
Kenny Dalglish: 52 points (8th)
Brendan Rodgers: 61 points (7th)
Jurgen Klopp: 76 points (4th)

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Good point.

And up until the last couple of rounds (where it was clear that some teams had less to play for), we were the highest scoring team in the league as well.

Next season has the potential of being fantastic. This season's top four + ManU and Arsenal could all conceivably win the league, and Everton, Southampton, West Ham etc will all be looking to break into the top 6. And apart from Mourinho, all the managers of the top clubs have quite positive, attacking philosophies, which leads to many goals and exciting games. The only argument against the PL being the undisputed best league in the world is the poor European results.

I can't cite sources, but I remember reading something about how having a competitive domestic league is detrimental to european club competitions. 

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On the John Terry thing, do I have this right?

The player himself decided when he would be substituted, before the game, and his manager agreed. He then got the opposing manager to instruct his team to kick the ball out of play at a pre-determined time. He told his team-mates to delay that substitution unnecessarily by forming a guard of honour as he walked off. The referee permitted all of this.

Is that what actually bloody happened? It's not only bizarre and incredibly narcissistic, it compromised the integrity of what was still officially a competitive match. If, in any other circumstance, two teams had conspired before the match to interrupt play at a particular moment in the match the Premier League would be (rightly) censuring everyone involved.

Seriously. Was a guard of honour at the beginning or end of the match just not special enough? How big of an ego do you have to have to do this? And why on earth would any manager agree to it? Shocking stuff.

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Is it "shocking stuff"? Is it, really?

It was done in an extremely unimportant match (one team already won the title the other already relegated, no way of changing position of either), it took a couple of minutes and, most importantly, it was done to honour the club's legend (such as the legend in question was).

There's no denying it's a tasteless display of narcissism and an extremely douchey thing to do, but I think people are overreacting to it. I mean, did anyone expect John Terry to be a gentleman about it? To do a classy thing for once in his life?

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Posted (edited)

16 minutes ago, baxus said:

Is it "shocking stuff"? Is it, really?

Yes.

It doesn't matter how important the match may have been to the league table. It's a competitive fixture, not a friendly. The PL would have fined a team for putting out a weakened side in that game. So you can't wave away a planned interruption to play with 'oh, the result didn't matter anyway'.

If you want to honour a club legend, go right ahead - before or after the match, as you please. Not during it*. That shows a disregard for the rules of the game that is, yes, shocking.

*ETA - hell, even during it, if it doesn't interrupt play. A minute's applause in the 26th minute? Go right ahead, knock yourself out.

Edited by mormont

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2 hours ago, Mmerek Hamšzulíe said:

And apart from Mourinho, all the managers of the top clubs have quite positive, attacking philosophies, which leads to many goals and exciting games.

Actually Mourinho did employ a positive brand of football for most of the season up until the last month or so. Hardly his fault that our forward players couldn't hit the broadside of a barn this season. Even Zlatan, our top scorer by a mile, sits at the top of the "big chances missed" table with 18.

 

Quote

The only argument against the PL being the undisputed best league in the world is the poor European results.

I can't cite sources, but I remember reading something about how having a competitive domestic league is detrimental to european club competitions. 

Most competitive of the top European leagues? Probably yes. Richest league? Undoubtedly. But the best league is La Liga which is ahead of the EPL when it comes to scouting, coaching, tactical nous and technical abilities. I would like to see the arguments for why a competitive domestic league is detrimental to European results because as far as I remember even back when the EPL was a two-horse race, English sides hardly dominated European competition. There was that purple patch in the CL from 2005-2012 but other than that period the current performances of English clubs in Europe seems to be par for the course.

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1 hour ago, mormont said:

On the John Terry thing, do I have this right?

The player himself decided when he would be substituted, before the game, and his manager agreed. He then got the opposing manager to instruct his team to kick the ball out of play at a pre-determined time. He told his team-mates to delay that substitution unnecessarily by forming a guard of honour as he walked off. The referee permitted all of this.

Is that what actually bloody happened? It's not only bizarre and incredibly narcissistic, it compromised the integrity of what was still officially a competitive match. If, in any other circumstance, two teams had conspired before the match to interrupt play at a particular moment in the match the Premier League would be (rightly) censuring everyone involved.

Seriously. Was a guard of honour at the beginning or end of the match just not special enough? How big of an ego do you have to have to do this? And why on earth would any manager agree to it? Shocking stuff.

This is John Terry we are talking about here. The man who would put his kit on to lift a cup given any opportunity. The man isn't self aware enough to understand narcissism.

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43 minutes ago, Consigliere said:

I would like to see the arguments for why a competitive domestic league is detrimental to European results.

We've talked about this at length on multiple occasions.

The best argument for that is that you can't really afford to rest (as many) players against weaker teams in the league when that weaker team is still a respectable team which causes players' fatigue when they need to play 2 strong games a week.

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3 hours ago, Mmerek Hamšzulíe said:

Next season has the potential of being fantastic. This season's top four + ManU and Arsenal could all conceivably win the league, and Everton, Southampton, West Ham etc will all be looking to break into the top 6. And apart from Mourinho, all the managers of the top clubs have quite positive, attacking philosophies, which leads to many goals and exciting games. The only argument against the PL being the undisputed best league in the world is the poor European results.

That is quite the caveat. 

 

3 hours ago, Mmerek Hamšzulíe said:

I can't cite sources, but I remember reading something about how having a competitive domestic league is detrimental to european club competitions. 

Sounds like desperate Premier League marketing after the recent failures. Even if it is true, then La Liga and Ligue 1's title races have been superior to the PL's this season - yet they accounted for 3 of the 4 semi final places.

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4 minutes ago, baxus said:

We've talked about this at length on multiple occasions.

The best argument for that is that you can't really afford to rest (as many) players against weaker teams in the league when that weaker team is still a respectable team which causes players' fatigue when they need to play 2 strong games a week.

Imo, the biggest factor is the lack of a winter break. The EPL really should look at emulating La Liga or Serie A in this regard which generally has 18 and 16 day breaks respectively. Looking at the number of domestic fixtures, La Liga has a total of 47 should a club reach the Copa Del Rey final whereas England has 50 (excluding replays) should a club reach both cup finals. Scrapping replays and having the C1C semi final as a one-off game at a neutral venue should free up the calender enough to ensure that the EPL can take at least a 16 day break in January. This not only benefits the teams competing in Europe either. It would help the majority of clubs that cannot afford to support a large squad as well. Not to mention, taking a break in January would allow managers a couple of weeks to do some transfer business if necessary without having to prepare for games coming thick and fast as well.

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Don't forget that Premier League gets insane broadcasting money in part because it's the only league that's on while other leagues have winter break.

I imagine that on Boxing Day or January 1st, when (almost) everyone is off work and there's no other football to watch, Premier League matches ratings go through the roof.

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I think the PL teams do suffer in the CL from more games (domestic cups) and greater physical intensity in the domestic games -- severity of tackles, distance run, # of sprints, etc -- without having any supporting data, just the observations of managers new to the PL.  However, I think PL teams suffer much more in the CL from their fundamental reliance on athleticism and intensity over technical ability -- harking back to the English vs Scottish versions of soccer in the early decades of the game.  

John Terry, IMO, deserves some sympathy here.  He needed to follow #FullKitWanker, but sequels are tough.  He needed to go bigger but also keep it fresh.  He could have sat on the bench all game and then emerged in full kit with added grass stains, sweat patches and a bloodied bandage on his head -- which would've upped the stakes but felt derivative.  Instead he found an entirely new expression for his narcissism that no-one saw coming and he made it the centerpiece of the entire game, rather than just an afterthought.  As a performance art, it makes me curious for the completion of the trilogy. 

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@baxus - that's why I suggest the break is taken sometime in January so as not to interfere with the festive season fixtures.

 

Anyway, I agree with the above post in that English sides need to improve technically as well as adopt smarter tactics. Spanish sides from top to bottom look far more comfortable and confident on the ball than their English counterparts. In addition, it seems that in England players are praised for running around like headless chickens chasing lost causes until they run themselves into the ground - this is where smarter tactics come in.

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6 hours ago, AncalagonTheBlack said:

Rafa Benitez: 58 points (5th)
Kenny Dalglish: 52 points (8th)
Brendan Rodgers: 61 points (7th)
Jurgen Klopp: 76 points (4th)

Klopp has done well. However, the comparasion is off - both Benitez and Rodgers had to start from scratch in summer, and even Dalglish started in January. Klopp started in October - and had 10 months and two transfer windows before his "full season" - a planning stage not afforded to the others. 

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