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Old 03-11-2009, 04:49 PM   #81
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Hah, Schuster didn't do much this year for Real.
But Bernadoīs sack didnīt give Real an real advantage, obviously. But they sack very fast. They are Idiots. I bet after the season they throw in another 100 mn. €
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Old 03-11-2009, 05:18 PM   #82
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Not in the Champion's League, it didn't. But it did help in La Liga where they've reeled off 12 undefeated games (11 wins in fact, if I remember correctly)
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Old 03-11-2009, 05:23 PM   #83
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Crappy penalty
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Old 03-11-2009, 05:25 PM   #84
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Not in the Champion's League, it didn't. But it did help in La Liga where they've reeled off 12 undefeated games (11 wins in fact, if I remember correctly)
Donīt know. I m not a fan of changing coaches rapidly.
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Old 03-11-2009, 05:34 PM   #85
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7-6 on spotkicks. British bombers over Europe.
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Old 03-11-2009, 05:36 PM   #86
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And Arsenal are through! All 4 English teams are through. Wow.
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Old 03-11-2009, 09:12 PM   #87
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wow is right. that is a great feat accomplished by the EPL clubs.
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Old 03-12-2009, 11:52 AM   #88
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interesting read from the wsj, but it's not just the italians falling to the english clubs, it's the spainards too.
of course, the brits would love to see similar acheivement by the national team, but that's not been the case.
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Why Can't Italy Beat England?
As England's Clubs Play With Brio, Italy's Get Defensive; All Eyes on InterArticle
By LEILA ABBOUD and DAVIDE BERRETTA

Soccer is as much a part of the Italian identity as lingering meals, exotic cars and Fellini movies. The Italian national team won the last World Cup in 2006. So why is it that Italy's professional soccer league, the Serie A, is increasingly looking like the sick man of European soccer?

The question is sure to be on millions of Italian fans' minds as they line up in front of their TVs to watch tonight's battle royale between the top club in England's Premier league, Manchester United, and Italy's top club, Internazionale Milano. The teams are playing in the Champions League, an annual tournament that pits Europe's best soccer clubs against each other.


Not only did Manchester United win the competition last year, but only one Italian team managed to get as far as the quarterfinals. Italian fans may be in for another helping of woe: Oddsmakers favor Manchester United in today's game. In another Champions League contest Tuesday, England's No. 3 team, Chelsea, eliminated Italy's No. 2 team, Juventus.

In today's other game, Italy's No. 5 team, Roma, has to beat England's No. 5 team, Arsenal, to stay alive. Off the field, attendance at Serie A games has fallen dramatically in the past decade, in large part because of a nagging problem of fan violence and the fallout from a match-fixing scandal.

Many believe Italy's troubles on the field in European competition speak to deeper problems. John Foot, a professor in modern Italian history at University College London and author of a book on the Serie A, says "Italy hasn't modernized its state, economy, society or its national sport, so it's not surprising that it has lost ground to other countries."

The Perils of Catenaccio
In the 1990s, Italian teams were the toast of Europe, appearing in eight Champions League finals and winning twice. The best players in the world including Diego Maradona and Zinedine Zidane flocked to the Serie A where the wages were the highest and the best tacticians in the world served as coaches.

Now, the English Premier League is the destination for the best players, who have turned the once-stodgy competition into a showcase for a flashy, fast-paced physical brand of soccer. Meanwhile Italy's club teams often play with a more tactical, defensive approach, inspired by a strategy in the 1970s called "catenaccio," which means "door bolt" in Italian.

Since 2000, English teams have appeared in five Champions League finals and won it twice. Italy's teams have appeared three times and won twice. The nadir came in 2007 when Manchester United spanked Roma, 7 goals to 1, a national humiliation. Ever since, Italian newspapers refer to any match-up between a British and Italian team as the recurring English nightmare, or "incubo Inglese."

The different styles will likely be displayed today -- Manchester United plays aggressive soccer with five players constantly shifting position to try to score. Inter Milan are likely to play a more defensive and pragmatic game, trying to lock down on defense and score on the counter-attack. It's an inversion of the typical national stereotypes: the Italian teams playing in a less spontaneous and passionate style than the supposedly straitlaced English.

Gianluca Vialli, 44, a former star striker for Juventus and the Italian national team who went on to coach for Chelsea in England, thinks these stylistic differences have historical roots. "The British are islanders who conquered and colonized throughout their history. After the Roman Empire, Italians have always been invaded and dominated, so we had to learn how to defend ourselves. We developed a very shrewd mindset where I defend myself but in the meantime I quietly move my pawns underground."

The country is still reeling from a match-fixing scandal in 2006 in which local media published wiretapped conversations of club managers at top teams conspiring with league officials to assign "favorable" referees to their matches. Juventus was stripped of two titles it had previously won and demoted to a lower league, while A.C Milan, S.S. Lazio and A.C.F Fiorentina were docked points for their involvement.

"The scandal really disillusioned people and led some people to fall out of love with football," said James Richardson, a British TV commentator who spent 10 years covering the Serie A.

Italian clubs also have an infrastructure problem -- the stadiums are old and as a result it's very difficult to stamp out fan violence. Many of Italy's soccer stadiums aren't owned by the clubs themselves but by local municipal authorities who have little incentive to modernize them. By contrast, English clubs all own their own stadiums and have spent heavily to improve them to attract fans and get them to spend money on everything from sushi to T-shirts. For example, Arsenal spent about $439 million to build the Emirates Stadium in north London in 2006.

Falling Attendance
Even at Italy's most hallowed grounds like the San Siro stadium in Milan, the facilities are poor and whole sections are dominated by hard-core fans whose zeal can flip into violence. Average attendance at Serie A games has decreased 25% in the past decade, according to Deloitte's sports business group, while audiences in England increased by 18% and Germany by 20%.

Games at Manchester United's Old Trafford stadium are filled on average 95% to capacity, while those at Inter Milan's San Siro are only 65% full.

Italy's soccer league president, Antonio Matarrese, recently said in interviews that the Serie A needs to change. He said it needs to modernize and to learn how to look ahead. He emphasized that the "rotten apples" would be tossed out.

The league is also working to fix its TV rights situation. Italian soccer earns much lower TV revenues than others because Serie A teams still sell their TV rights individually. Simon Chadwick, professor of sports business at Coventry University, says that by selling the TV rights collectively, "leagues offer a much stronger product and can ensure the health and welfare of all the teams."

Although their team is the underdog today, Inter Milan fans are not giving up. Erminio Truncellito, 27, still thinks the Italian league is the world's toughest. "Players who used to play in England that have come to Italy have accomplished nothing," he says. Mr. Truncellito believes one of the Italian teams will advance to the next round of the Champions League.

"I would feel offended if none of them were to get through," he said. "And even more I would feel let down."

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Old 03-12-2009, 12:49 PM   #89
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Hope the Brits can whipe out the remaining german team. Last years quarterfinals were the best gemes i ever saw. Liverpool played Arsenal 4-2 or so.
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Old 03-12-2009, 05:49 PM   #90
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Hahah, are you familiar with a player named Carlos Alberto, G_D? He's currently on loan to my favorite soccer team! Hah! Almost scored a goal 5 minutes ago. He actually was the assist man for the first goal.
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Old 03-12-2009, 05:55 PM   #91
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^ Thanks Bernados. You made my day
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Old 03-12-2009, 05:57 PM   #92
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Alberto is playing for Vasco da Gama right now ?
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Old 03-12-2009, 05:59 PM   #93
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OK, i see his face right now. Well, the Gasstations in Bremen miss him...
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Old 03-12-2009, 08:19 PM   #94
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lol, hahaha, he's pretty decent right now actually, he's been on loan for a couple years now, he assisted on 2 goals and scored one himself tonight. He was a bad guy, honestly, never did like him before but he seems like a different person now, not as conceited as before. His game most definitely benefits from it. When you guys get him back on the 2nd half of the year you'll see he has changed. Unless you guys would so kindly.... loan him to us for another 6 months? lol
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Old 03-12-2009, 08:36 PM   #95
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lol, hahaha, he's pretty decent right now actually, he's been on loan for a couple years now, he assisted on 2 goals and scored one himself tonight. He was a bad guy, honestly, never did like him before but he seems like a different person now, not as conceited as before. His game most definitely benefits from it. When you guys get him back on the 2nd half of the year you'll see he has changed. Unless you guys would so kindly.... loan him to us for another 6 months? lol
If he fits in the team in case he ever will return, you get my bookie. I hope he improves so we can sell him off and hopefully recover 3 or 4 of the 8,5 mn € we paid for the bitch
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Old 03-13-2009, 02:46 AM   #96
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I am so disappointed with Real and their recent exit in the Champions League. Good thing it was Liverpool they lost to, but dang!
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Old 03-13-2009, 12:59 PM   #97
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If you think that's bad, check how dreadful their defense is in the latest Adidas Live Update on Fifa 09! Seventy-freakin'-eight. Cannavaro has been done for a while.... I keep having to move Sergio Ramos to CB if I ever hope to keep up with the Fernando Torres and Cristiano Ronaldo and Eto'o speed spammers of the world.
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Old 03-13-2009, 07:19 PM   #98
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What a saturday.

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Old 03-13-2009, 09:39 PM   #99
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What a saturday.

who ya got?

I'd like liverpool to win, it makes the race for first more interesting. being on the road, unlikely.

go reds.
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Old 03-13-2009, 09:54 PM   #100
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Open match. Must be 7:45 pm CDT. Bu i think Manchester will roll in the win. The guys are so strong.
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Old 03-14-2009, 09:33 AM   #101
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Open match. Must be 7:45 pm CDT. Bu i think Manchester will roll in the win. The guys are so strong.
Sorry for this stupid post. Itīs, of course, AM
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Old 03-14-2009, 12:19 PM   #102
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Wow, 'Pool crushed Man U.
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Old 03-14-2009, 02:18 PM   #103
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They really got crushed. Due to damn basketball i overslept, but the 2nd half was also awesome. Ferguson benched 3 players simultanously and brought Berbatov, Scholes and Giggs for Park, Carrick and another one. After that Vidic was sent off on "last man". Free kick was in.
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Old 03-15-2009, 12:00 AM   #104
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torres was fantastic, liverpool played with much more energy than man u.

it was over before vidic made his stupid play, and the free kick was one of beauty.

liverpool is still 4 pts behind, and chelsea benefitted as much as liverpool by man u's loss.

it does make the last dozen or so games much more interesting!

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Old 03-15-2009, 02:56 PM   #105
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4-0 werder bremen! Yeah!
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Old 03-15-2009, 03:21 PM   #106
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Stuttgart got schooled big time. Two " goals of the month" were scored by Diego ( freekick) and Pizarro. 3-0 and 4-0 Markus Rosenberg.
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Old 03-16-2009, 05:36 PM   #107
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Dreadful in Pks, yes, but they were forced to play without the bulk of their normal PK team. Unfortunatley for the rest of the premiership, that won't be the case in league play.

Last night Middlesborough caught the fury of the pissed off Yid Army...
the spurs did a favor to arsenal in beating the villians. spurs played well, but where did villa's confidence and high level of play go to? they are not the same side as seen in the first half of the season.

and, of course, tottenham did themselves some good in separation from the relegation zone. don't think they can make it so far to play for uefa glory, but it's possible
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Old 03-19-2009, 09:59 AM   #108
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Werder is the first team through to the quarter-finals of UEFA!
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Old 03-19-2009, 02:30 PM   #109
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And Udinese. Yikes.
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Old 03-21-2009, 01:11 PM   #110
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For you EPL fans: How about Fullham, huh?
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Old 03-21-2009, 02:02 PM   #111
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And the gunners are moving up. 10 minutes, 4 goles. Perfect.

Nasri - grande jugador
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Old 03-23-2009, 05:50 AM   #112
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Originally Posted by Mavdog View Post
the spurs did a favor to arsenal in beating the villians. spurs played well, but where did villa's confidence and high level of play go to? they are not the same side as seen in the first half of the season.

and, of course, tottenham did themselves some good in separation from the relegation zone. don't think they can make it so far to play for uefa glory, but it's possible
Spurs are laying waste to the top of the table. Chelsea bowed down to service the Spurs on Saturday. The only downside is that we're clearing the way for Arsenal to make it to the Championship League.
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Old 03-23-2009, 09:23 AM   #113
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For you EPL fans: How about Fullham, huh?
I'm sure that there was a nice bottle of wine sent by benitez to hogson for the help.

nice win, and man u showed a lot of discord. they seemed to be arguing among themselves frequently.
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Old 03-23-2009, 09:27 AM   #114
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Spurs are laying waste to the top of the table. Chelsea bowed down to service the Spurs on Saturday. The only downside is that we're clearing the way for Arsenal to make it to the Championship League.
the spurs are only what? 4 points out of uefa play? they can really aid their ability to get additional talent if they make it up to european competition.

keane looks very comfortable, they are playing much better lately.
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Old 03-23-2009, 10:29 AM   #115
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In the meantime, Huntelaar is tearing up La Liga. 8 goals in 6 matches. He better keep scoring cause at the rate Barcelona is going we can't lose.

Hopefully Van Nistelrooy can come back in shape next year (and hopefully we'll keep him). An attack of Van Nistelrooy and Huntelaar can be quite formidable (and it's not like Higuaín is chopped liver either, and to have him come off the bench.... wow).
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Old 04-08-2009, 05:30 PM   #116
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Bayern Müchen got manhandled badly today. 4-0 at Camp nou. And Barcelona shifted 2 gears back in 2nd half. That match was simply, donīt know the word.
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Old 04-09-2009, 07:58 PM   #117
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I saw the game from about 30 minutes on and about 15 minutes of the 2nd half. Not a chance for Bayern, they looked worse than 0-4.

Bring on Udinese man, they got nothing on Werder! Go Diego Go!



(come to think of it, they do look alike a little bit.....)
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Old 04-09-2009, 09:23 PM   #118
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3-1. HSV did score 3-1 as well. so ht semifinal northman clash is nearly perfect. But 4 times THE northern derby within 4 weeks is way too much, so i hope Machester City will sack the Hamburgians. I got tickets for the national cup. Should be a funny way to the stadium. Guarded by police horses.

Damnit horse.
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Old 04-16-2009, 03:35 PM   #119
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3-3 @ Udinese Calcio. What a game.
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Old 04-22-2009, 06:07 PM   #120
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Back in business !

Ticket 19 €
Transfer 0 €
Beer 4 €
Beer 4 €
Fan Support unbelievable
Overtime 0 €
4-2 win on penalty shootout 0 €

Keeper deflecs 3 penalties. ... priceless !!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eyBYszlLa8

HSV ... worthless

What a night. Wooohoo !
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