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A Horse Named Stranger

Football: pool in to the Final Spur of the season

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Do Chelsea fans honestly want Sarri out? 3rd place and two cup finals. Can’t imagine expecting more at the start of the season.

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Posted (edited)

3rd and two cup finals definitely constitutes as a good season, yes, but we were only two points better off in the league than we were last season when we finished fifth. We won one game out of our last five league matches.

I'm not against Sarri remaining as Chelsea manager, but he doesn't inspire me as our manager, at all. It took him until March to regularly play CHO and RLC despite Chelsea fans calling for him to do so for months (RLC did have a few minor injuries). With the transfer ban this summer, we may have to rely on younger players coming back from loan, and I'm not sure Sarri is the guy to manage us in a period with a transfer ban, as he, for the most part of the season, decided to play experienced and out of form players ahead of young and in form players.

As Sarri has one way of playing, he needs to build the squad around his style, which means buying players that suit his football. There are quite a few players in our squad that don't look like they suit his style of play. Without being able to sign players, he is going to have to work with what he has got, which will basically be the squad we have now, with a few players possibly returning from loan, and with Hazard, by far our best player, gone.

It doesn't seem like the best situation for us to have a manager like Sarri as our coach. I think we need a manager who knows our youth system well and is able to build the style of football based on what players they have available to them.

 

Edited by Jordan La Cabra

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If Chelsea don't see Sarri as someone who could be at the club for the next three seasons then now is the perfect time to make the change. Allegri is both a more flexible manager and a proven winner. No compensation will be required either.

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I don’t see how you can sack him. He was always a long term project they knew that going in. Sacking him now after a successful season with a roster not of his making after a limited pre season would be well very Chelsea so yea it will probably happen. 

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All things considered, Sarri had a good season but we all know that managers are very expendable at Chelsea and the managerial revolving door has actually worked for them. Also the latest reports say that Chelsea are considering not appealing to CAS to delay their ban - apparently they would still be allowed to complete the signings of Higuain and Kovacic. In that case Sarri would still have a roster not of his making next season and a more flexible manager who isn't dead set on a specific style might make better use of the existing squad. 

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And as somewhat expected Kruse has announced that he will not sign a new contract with Bremen. Apparently it's still unknown where he will go. I am really curious where he will end up. I think the most likely outcomes are him signing his last bigger payday at a bigger German club likesay Gladbach, who will need a replacement for Hazard, or which I think is equally credible, he will go to the MLS to be closer to his son.

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I think Liverpool apart from the cover at full back need someone that can create and provide goals from behind the front three. Ox back is a good start and hopefully Keita turns into the player he looked to be.

What are people's opinion of the song the city players were 'caught' singing?

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51 minutes ago, lmanion said:

.What are people's opinion of the song the city players were 'caught' singing?

It was pretty cringey tbh. Players singing about rival fans getting “battered in the streets” is just weird.  

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VAR is pretty busy today on the final match day of the Bundesliga.

Bayern is on course, they lead 1-0 against Frankfurt, totally dominating performance should've added a couple more. VAR ruled a possible 2-0 correctly offside. Atm Frankfurt are on course of crashing out of European football altogether. They are bringing on Haller for the second half. He was really sorely missed due to injuries. Ok, 1-1 now, Haller.

Freiburg is on course of ending their season with a win. Really pathetic performance by Nürnberg, who claimed they did not want to go down as bottom last team. Streich will be happy, since he was not too fond of his team's recent performances. Yes, they are saved

Dortmund had the VAR moment thus far. Dortmund's lead. It looks like the ball might have been out of play before Reus set up Sancho for the goal. The ref took a good look at the screen. Since he can only overturn his decission, if he is 100% certain, the goal stood.

Which also has consequences for the race for the 4th place. With Gladbach and Frankfurt losing, Leverkusen can snatch the final CL spot from them, and they are on course. Might be an important argument, if they want to convince Brandt, Havertz and Tah to stay. 2-1 up against Berlin.

Bremen also have the lead. 1-0 penalty after VAR review.

Wolfsburg also lead, which puts them into European football for next season. Not the worst way for Labbadia to leave the club. But it was a truely abysmal performance by Augsburg, they are really already at the beach.

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The fa cup has really fallen in importance hasn't it. Time was I'd have been more inclined to watch it than the champions league. 

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At least United won't have to enter second round qualifying now. I predict Wolves' league form will suffer next season with them having to contend with midweek European games. Their preseason will be cut short as well since 2nd round qualifying starts in July. 

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Watford got demolished. And it could have even been worse. Such a one-sided game made for a pretty lame cup final.

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Some footy news:

@GFFN
José Mourinho: "I hope to be back to work in July in a project I really like." (RMC)

Fabinho and Lucas Moura left out of Brazil squad for Copa America

 

Transfer speculations in the media:

@GGFN_
Manchester City forward Leroy Sané is stalling over a new contract with the Premier League club

@footballespana_
Manchester City have made a €70m offer for #AtleticoMadrid midfielder Rodri and player is likely to accept move - Diario AS

@footballespana_
#AtleticoMadrid 'dreaming' of signing #Benfica teen star Joao Felix to replace outgoing Antoine Griezmann

@SkySportsNews
 @afcbournemouth have confirmed the signing of Lloyd Kelly on a "long-term contract"

@MailSport
Arsenal 'set to trigger Roma centre back Kostas Manolas' £31m release clause' as Unai Emery looks to shore up Gunners' leaky defence

@MailSport
Manchester United track Fenerbahce teenager Elif Elmas but face competition from Premier League rivals

@SkySportsLyall
Exclusive: #ManUtd have made initial contact with #FulhamFC for Ryan Sessegnon #MUFC Only club have done so so far

@GFFN
PSG are edging closer to a provisional contract agreement with Tanguy Ndombele, as Juventus & Tottenham Hotspur have offered the player contracts of their own, according to tomorrow's L'Équipe.

@GFFN
Manchester United remain interested in Tanguy Ndombele, but will not make any move until the Paul Pogba situation is clearer, according to tomorrow's L'Équipe.

@GFFN
Manchester City, who had not made any contact for several months for Tanguy Ndombele, have also recently resurfaced - L'Équipe call Tottenham's offer especially "lovely" from a financial perspective.

@GFFN
Tottenham Hotspur & Juventus have submitted provisional contract offers to Lyon midfielder Tanguy Ndombele, who has not made a decision yet

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So Bundesliga has ended as expected.

Bayern trhashed Frankfurt convincingly after the latter dared to score the equalizer. Also Robben and Ribery, who were brought during the second half each scored a goal on their final appearence for the club. Ribery's goal was particularly lovely; 5-1 the final score. Frankfurt were temporarily out of the European places until...

Hoffenheim have failed to win another game from a winning position. They were up 2-0 against Mainz only to collapse in the second half and lose 4-2 there. Interesting, that Mainz of all teams kept their rivals Frankfurt in the EL. Note that Mainz was really not playing for anything in particular, aside from pride and a decent goodbye from their fans for the summer.

Leverkusen totally dismantled Berlin. Bayer like Bayern won 5-1 in the end. Nice goal from Brandt btw. Thus Bayer climbed into the CL spot. Courtesy to Bayern and Dortmund doing their bits in their final games.

Another 5-1 was the result in Freiburg vs. Nürnberg. Freiburg decided to put in a good performance as a goodbye for the summer present for their fans. Nürnberg was really not present, and it could have easily been the most embarassing performance of the day, were it not for

Augsburg. That was just utterly pathetic. In the end they got mauled 8-1 by Wolfsburg. Yes, Wolfsburg were still playing for the European qualification and Augsburg was playing for nothing, really. At least they played like it.

Bremen beat Leipzig 2-1 in a last ditch effort to qualify for the EL. It just wasn'T enough due to the sheer patheticness of Augsburg.

Gladbach lost to Dortmund with 2-0. The controversy about DOrtmund's first goal was mentioned in the previous post. Thus they crashed out of the final CL spot.

Ah, right. Düsseldorf also beat Hannover 2-1. Thus they won the game I could not give a toss about trophy. The other game in that category Schalke - Stuttgart ended with a fitting 0-0.

 

Tomorrow Bundesliga 2 will have its final matchday.

Since my team is playing away, and is among the teams that really is not competing for anything anymore (apart from palcement and tv money), there are really not many interesting games there.

Basically four games are somewhat relevant.

The fight for the second promotion spot vs. the play-off thrashing against Stuttgart.

Second placed Paderborn play in Dresden, while third placed Union Berlin play in Bochum.

The other two games of interest concern the play off spot wrt relegation.

16th placed Ingolstadt play in Heidenheim (5th) and 15th placed Sandhausen play in Regensburg (8th). Sandhausen have two points and three goals on Ingolstadt, but are on a horrible run.

Comedy game of the day is of course.

Ha-Ha-Ha-HSV vs. Duisburg.

After they effectively killed their promotion bid last weekend, I just hope their fans demolish the bloody stadium tomorrow. Some facts why this game is so funny. The game was advertised for the entire season as the promotion party for them. It was really supposed to be just a run out with a good atmosphere and stuff. So they also charged a (top game) premium on that top game against a side that is relegated, while they really can't win promotion anymore (three points 21 goals) - yes, it is all really hillarious. Their fans are not really big on dignity and stuff. So this has the potential to be really funny. Come on orcs, burn down Mordor. Do it!

 

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So what about Coutinho this summer?  Barca have misused him, scape-goated him and now broadcast their desire to sell him, but also seem to expect to get a high price.  Coutinho’s reputation has fallen in the past year and a half and now seems unlikely to attract 100+ million bids from anywhere.  Plus I doubt he wants to shuffle out of Barcelona as a loser.

I think the highest likelihood is that Coutinho rejects any transfer and instead bets that he can turn it around, especially if he outlasts Valverde.  In an aging team approaching a rebuild, they might yet shift the formation to suit him better.  Similar to Bale: once you’ve reached an apex team on a huge contract, why would you accept a transfer out?

If Barca would take a huge loss on the sale, then possibly Chelsea, Juventus (need more attacking play) or PSG (Neymar likes Coutinho, even if DiMaria already fills his position) could be possible destinations.  But I would be surprised if Coutinho agrees this summer.

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21 hours ago, lmanion said:

I think Liverpool apart from the cover at full back need someone that can create and provide goals from behind the front three. Ox back is a good start and hopefully Keita turns into the player he looked to be.

What are people's opinion of the song the city players were 'caught' singing?

I don't think Liverpool will sign another midfielder unless they let go of a few. It's the one area they will be stacked in. They already have creative players in midfield but they kept getting injured. Lallana, Ox, Keita, Shaqiri are all more creative than Hendo, Gini and Milner. I expect Keita and Ox to play a lot more next season (probably Lallana too), though I have a feeling that Hendo or Gini will always be a staple in midfiled and only one of Ox, Shaq and Keita will play at a time (in midfield) to keep the defensive balance. Hopefully Lallana and Ox stay fit and Shaqiri improves then that would largely solve our midfield creativity issues.

As for City players singing, i didn't think too much of it to be honest. I doubt they are aware of the context of those particular choice of words (except the veterans i guess). What annoyed me was the club's statement. They of all people should know better and could've just said what Pep did later in the interview (i.e. apologized to people who were offended but defended the players' intentions). It is still weird they sang a song about Liverpool though. I could've understood if it was a song about City's triumphs and beating Liverpool etc being part of the song. But the whole song was about Liverpool so it was bizarre lol

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I'm just praying Arsenal sells a shitload of players. So much mediocrity on this team eating up wages.

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Shame Union didn’t make it. Hopefully they become the first 2. Liga side to win in the playoff for what seems an eternity.

Good story in Paderborn over the last five years. Their last few seasons:

13-14: promoted to the Bundesliga

14-15: relegated to 2. Bundesliga

15-16: relegated to 3. Liga

16-17: relegated to Regionalliga, but reprieved when 1860 Munich have financial issues

17-18: promoted to 2. Bundesliga

18-19: promoted to Bundesliga

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Wages are a problem these days. 

Take Sandro Ramirez, who we bought for .. what, £5m? .. back in the day. He duly bombed, but since he was on the cheap, he got high wages. Who would match them? Very few, at least since he bombed both with us and on loan.

Same story with several players, I believe (though we are nowhere near the utterly ridiculously paid Alexis Sanchez).

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