AncalagonTheBlack

Football: Mo Please!

197 posts in this topic

To consider your points seriously- we have won 19 top flight titles,but admittedly no PL's.Working on that one.

I'm not going to comment on that.

We would have to go some to secure 6th-more likely a top four ,no?Besides we are looking much better defensively since VVD arrived with our wide backs improving every game.

Anyway,this is disappointing.When I congratulated City toward the top of this page I genuinely meant it.

Maybe "congrats to City and most of their fans" would be more appropriate?

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Quite concerning when you look at recent results between ‘big teams’ in Germany, France and Scotland, with Bayern Munich beating Borussia Dortmund 6-0 a few weeks ago, Celtic beating Rangers 4-0 today, and PSG beating Monaco 7-1 tonight. 

I know Monaco managed to win Ligue 1 last season, but that only made PSG splash a world record to sign Neymar and sign Monaco’s star player, Mbappe, on loan with an obligation to buy this summer.

The gap between the likes of Bayern, PSG, Celtic and their some of their so-called nearest rivals is either not getting any closer or growing even larger.

Edited by JordanJH1993

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Edit: Error

Edited by JordanJH1993

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United may play boring football but you have to respect their range.  A victory against the runaway league leaders followed immediately (with plenty of rest) by a loss at home to the bottom team brings a different kind of interest. 

It used to only be Liverpool and occasionally Arsenal who could manage swings like that. 

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On 4/14/2018 at 1:47 AM, Mme Erzulie said:

 

1. It just does, man. There's something about watching Bergkamp control the ball, dink it over a hapless defender and smash the ball into the corner of the goal that is just... art. 

Ok, do this with me: take off one ice hockey team's skates and let them play against a team with skates - who wins? Or with/without sticks? with or without bats in baseball? Take away cycles from cyclists or skis from skiers. Most (all?) equipment in sports is beneficial to the athletes. Now, what would happen if you allowed one football team to use their hands? They could carry, throw and knock the ball with their hands (as well as their feet), while the other team could only use their hands - which team (other things being equal) would win? You can disagree with the consequence that this makes the sport more artful, somehow, but I think the premise is sound. There are few other sports where you are prohibited from using the most natural/beneficial part of your body. It's sort of similar to why we're impressed by foot and mouth painters. In general, shit's hard for humans when they're not allowed to use their hands.

And much like the way blind people can have improved hearing, there is something about watching players do things to a ball with their feet that seemingly defies logic, physics and sometimes gravity, that is just mesmerising. Add to that interaction between players and the evading of opponents hellbent on stopping them, and you get something very special that I haven't seen replicated in other sports.

I say this as someone who's very fond of ice hockey and the NHL, and many other sports besides. I find most (well, at least a good few) sports entertaining, intriguing and engaging, but something sets football apart from the pack. It doesn't really matter to me personally whether football is the best sport or not, it just is. I'm just postulating some theories for why that might be the case.

Hey, I agree that there are some great displays of skill in football. Who would watch it if there weren't? It's a great display of athletic skill. No more, no less. You can enjoy it, you can even call it art if you want, but it's still nowhere near as exclusive to football as you originally stated.

I really don't get this "take X of one team in Y" tangent you went off on. Take football boots off one football team and let the other one keep them. See who wins that one. Hell, see who ends up with half their squad on the stretchers by the end of the match.

There are quite a few sports with higher skill level required to play than football, there are quite a few sports with greater feats of skill being displayed much more regularly and frequently. Ice hockey is in a whole other universe when it comes to that, but it's far from being the only one. We can take a look at basketball, for example. Can we even compare NBA playoffs to Champions League knockout stages when it comes to skill that's being displayed? How about volleyball? Jumping 4 feet in the air and spiking the ball with the single touch right in the corner between three opponents trying to block you is as impressive a feat as 99% of what we get to see in football.

Once again, I love football, I love watching it, the World Cup this summer will have the top priority in my schedule (my wife's due to give birth two weeks after the World Cup is finished, so I'm hoping baby doesn't come that early :D ), it IS the sport I've grew up watching and playing most of all, I watch it most of all sports and all that.

Still, I think those are the reasons football sticks out as THE sport for so many people (plus having an emotional investment in this or that club), not some great displays of skill because those are few and far between, especially in "modern" football where tactics and positioning are valued over flare.

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5 hours ago, baxus said:

There are quite a few sports with higher skill level required to play than football, there are quite a few sports with greater feats of skill being displayed much more regularly and frequently. Ice hockey is in a whole other universe when it comes to that, but it's far from being the only one. We can take a look at basketball, for example. Can we even compare NBA playoffs to Champions League knockout stages when it comes to skill that's being displayed? How about volleyball? Jumping 4 feet in the air and spiking the ball with the single touch right in the corner between three opponents trying to block you is as impressive a feat as 99% of what we get to see in football.

I've ignored this up to this point because, honestly, I don't care which sport people prefer, it's subjective, but you're talking some absolute rubbish here.

Firstly, performing complex skills with your feet rather than your hands most definitely is more difficult. I haven't played ice hockey, and I'm sure the skating adds a degree of difficulty, but I have played hockey; it's easier than football.

Secondly, people assume a base level of skill for football which they don't for other sports because it's so ubiquitous but, without thinking about it, a lot of work has been done to achieve that level of skill. You know all your friends you play football with who're pretty shit (very,very shit relative to the to the top level)? They've probably spent thousands, if not tens of thousands, of hours practising to achieve that level. Everyone or at least every boy plays football a huge amount as they're growing up (at least in Europe and probably in many other places).

Thirdly, there's no way ice hockey or volleyball are being played to a higher relative skill level than football, probably not basketball either. Billions of people play football and billions of pounds is spent identifying and developing talent. The Champions League knockout stages is made up of players who're probably in the top couple of hundred out of those billions who start out. The talent pool in ice hockey what 100 million maybe, volleyball considerably less than that and there's vastly less money involved? Come on.

 

Edited by ljkeane

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Joe Hart proving his uselessness once again tonight. Stoke fans were chanting ‘England’s number four’ at him which seemed a bit generous. 

 

Meanwhile in the Bundesliga, Pablo de Blasis becomes the first player to score during half time.

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18 hours ago, ljkeane said:

I've ignored this up to this point because, honestly, I don't care which sport people prefer, it's subjective, but you're talking some absolute rubbish here.

Firstly, performing complex skills with your feet rather than your hands most definitely is more difficult. I haven't played ice hockey, and I'm sure the skating adds a degree of difficulty, but I have played hockey; it's easier than football.

Secondly, people assume a base level of skill for football which they don't for other sports because it's so ubiquitous but, without thinking about it, a lot of work has been done to achieve that level of skill. You know all your friends you play football with who're pretty shit (very,very shit relative to the to the top level)? They've probably spent thousands, if not tens of thousands, of hours practising to achieve that level. Everyone or at least every boy plays football a huge amount as they're growing up (at least in Europe and probably in many other places).

Thirdly, there's no way ice hockey or volleyball are being played to a higher relative skill level than football, probably not basketball either. Billions of people play football and billions of pounds is spent identifying and developing talent. The Champions League knockout stages is made up of players who're probably in the top couple of hundred out of those billions who start out. The talent pool in ice hockey what 100 million maybe, volleyball considerably less than that and there's vastly less money involved? Come on.

Firstly, maybe you should try playing ice hockey before discussing it? Ice skating does not just "add a degree of difficulty", it changes everything!

Secondly, my friends I play football with are definitely shit compared to top level. Hell, they are probably shit compared to not-so-top level, as am I and as re you and pretty much everyone in this thread (if we do have a professional football player among this thread's regulars, I apologize). And no, they haven't spent tens of thousands of hours practicing to achieve that level, and neither has the average person that plays football just for fun. This whole "we're playing football our whole lives and we aren't good at it" is a load of horseshit. There's a huge difference between playing with your mates after school now and again and training regularly with coaches who provide athletic, technical and tactical coaching. And don't forget that the guys I've played ice hockey with are even worse when compared to top level ice hockey players. ;) 

Thirdly, hell yes is the relative skill level for hockey higher than one for football. You think that skating is easier than running? Stickhandling easier than waving your hands while running or crying at the ref? And you don't think that there is a skill required to do all that in a way faster game, while dodging opponents who are actually ALLOWED to hit you harder than any professional football player has been hit EVER?!

And the biggest point you are missing - the fact that a sport is more popular does not mean it requires a higher skill level. In general, people are not known for taking the road that requires extra effort.

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39 minutes ago, baxus said:

Secondly, my friends I play football with are definitely shit compared to top level. Hell, they are probably shit compared to not-so-top level, as am I and as re you and pretty much everyone in this thread (if we do have a professional football player among this thread's regulars, I apologize). And no, they haven't spent tens of thousands of hours practicing to achieve that level, and neither has the average person that plays football just for fun. This whole "we're playing football our whole lives and we aren't good at it" is a load of horseshit.

Of course everyone in this thread is extremely shit compared to the top level of football, that's the point I was making. And, yes, they almost certainly have spent thousands of hours to achieve that level. I'm sure honing their skills with top level coaches would have been more effective but spending a huge amount of time playing a sport is practicing. What other sport has almost everyone spent thousands of hours working on?

39 minutes ago, baxus said:

Thirdly, hell yes is the relative skill level for hockey higher than one for football.

I sorry, but that's absolute nonsense. You think the sport with a tiny fraction of the player base, which is at best the third or fourth biggest sport most of the places it's played (so if you're good at multiple sports almost everywhere you're going to play the bigger sport), has bigger barriers to entry with all the equipment and facilities required to play it, and has far less money in it is being played to a higher relative standard? I'm sorry that's just a complete fantasy.

We get it, you like ice hockey. Look, I prefer rugby to football, if you want me to expound on the virtues of rugby I can go on for a while but it's a far, far smaller sport than football, it's not being played to a higher relative standard. That's just reality. The same is very much true of ice hockey.

Edited by ljkeane

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It would be a simple experiment - grab a bunch of elite football players and have them play ice hockey and grab a bunch of elite ice hockey players and have them play football and compare the skill they display.

While I'm pretty sure that ice hockey players wouldn't exactly dazzle the world with their expertise in football, I don't think there is a chance in the world that that footballers would perform better. Hell, they'd be on their asses half the time.

EDIT:

Once again - bigger popularity does not equal higher skill level required.

Edited by baxus

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Sigh. Wish I hadn't started this.

Look, the argument is simple: football is phenomenally successful. In spectator terms, it is the single most successful team sport in the world by far, and probably the biggest sport overall. People love to watch it. And that popularity is amazingly consistent, crossing barriers of age, language, culture, everything. 

You might well feel that less popular sports are in fact more exciting. That's an opinion you're entitled to have. But the massive popularity of watching football suggests that lots of people hold a different opinion. 

How does it achieve that popularity? I think the answer is likely to be a mix involving the intensity and duration of a match, the degree of simplicity in the rules, the skill of the players, the balance of the scoring system, and a bunch of other factors. But what you can't deny is that if you're claiming that not only is ice hockey more exciting, but it's actually 'silly' to say otherwise, you hold what might politely be described as a 'niche' opinion. Most people you meet in most places in the world will not agree. Even those who personally prefer ice hockey would probably at least acknowledge that football has a strong claim. 

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@mormont Actually, this is the initial post

On 4/13/2018 at 1:16 AM, Mme Erzulie said:

These past three days is a perfect example of why no other sport can ever compete with football.

Then I responded to it.

On 4/13/2018 at 11:46 AM, baxus said:

I know this is a football thread, but it's a bit silly to say this with Stanley Cup Playoffs started two days ago. ;) 

Where exactly did you see "it's silly to say that football is more exciting than ice hockey"? Please, feel free to point it out because all I see is "it's silly to say that nothing can compare when there is this other exciting thing going on right at this very moment".

Bear in mind that I have never said that I don't like watching football or that I find it boring, rather that there are other sports that are very exciting too and can not be counted less interesting and/or exciting than football by default.

Later, the debate switched to comparing skill levels required to play different sports but that's another matter all together.

Btw, I do think that we should "agree to disagree" and move on. Thread's been derailed long enough (and I accept my share of the blame). ;) 

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PFA Team of the Year

I'd have chosen Andy Robertson over Marcos Alonso. Maybe would have gone for Fernandino over Eriksen, but both have been brilliant. Close between David de Gea and Ederson for goalkeeper, but de Gea's saves have won more points for Man United. The rest of the team picks itself, really.

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Ederson has been good this season but DDG is on a whole other level. Best keeper in the EPL and it's not even debatable. I get that City walked the league and have conceded the least goals but Otamendi should not be in there. 

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Robertson didn’t really start any games until Moreno got hurt around late October/November I wanna say it was. So he had that working against him.

Sterling over Aguero imo

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Ederson has adapted really quickly to the Premier League, and has been a lot better than I expected him to be, in all departments; his kicking is something else. DdG has still had a better season, though, considering the amount of big saves he has made.

This hasn't exactly been a stellar season for centre backs. Otamendi has probably got in because there haven't been many other options to pick. Vertonghen is the obvious choice, then, after him, it's difficult. Tarkowski for Burnley, or Maguire for Leicester. VvD has been good since he signed for Liverpool. Kompany would deserve a mention, but he's only played in fifteen league games. Dunk and Duffy have been a good duo for Brighton.

Robertson may have played fewer games than Alonso, but he has probably had as many good performances, if not more, than Alonso has had all season.

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The problem Robertson had was the timing of the vote. Moreno was starting ahead of him and Robertson only nailed down the position around December, iirc. With the voting taking place early (around Feb, I think) this counted against him since he was a regular for only around 2 months at the time. Players who have a strong 1st half of the season but then fade away are more likely to make the shortlist than players who started slow but finished strong.

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In fairness Otamendi looked really good for large parts of the season, the games when he looked poor probably came after a lot of votes had been cast.

Centre back isn't a particularly strong position. I haven't been that impressed with Vertonghen this year either, Spurs' defence hasn't actually been as good as you'd expect. United have got a good defensive record but I don't think the defenders have been particularly outstanding, Van Dijk's been good at Liverpool but you're talking half a season and Chelsea haven't been great. I think you could make a strong case for Tarkowski or maybe Lascelles.   

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Otamendi?  City’s defenders seem great until they actually have to defend.  It’s questionable whether any of them have defended well enough to merit inclusion.  Walker was shown up badly too recently, although I cannot think of any RB who has done especially well.

I’m a bit surprised that Spurs get three representatives despite being a distant fourth in the PL; and their best form of the season has been since January IIRC.  All three are fine players but it seems to reflect a halo effect from media coverage.

Other than maybe Robertson, I’ve no complaints about Liverpool’s paucity of representation.  Andy only played half the season, so did VVD — even if he improved an entire defense in the process.  Liverpool have had some very good performances this year beyond Salah: notably Firmino, Milner, Trent, Gomez, Andy and Karius all showing big improvement and/or more than was expected for this season, plus Lovren has been significantly better in recent months.  None of them are the stand-out at their position for the entire league, but it has been the breadth of our quality and the improved balance in our system that brought us within touching distance of second place (until we face-planted at OT and then got distracted by our CL adventure). 

I thought Kante or Fernandinho were worthy of inclusion.   The team shape is heavily biased toward the glamour positions: strikers and playmakers abound in the front six.  Salah’s unusual level of goals for a wide position is the only thing that saves this from being three #9s and three #10s.  I realize people are voting for individuals rather than a team composition. 

Edited by Iskaral Pust

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