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Friday, August 08, 2008

More pre-season musings

A few more random thoughts to keep us all buzzing before the season starts:

First, let us hope that the words Northern Rock emblazoned across our shirts do not act as a harbinger of similar fortunes. Rather, let us hope that team and sponsor follow a path of stabilization and resurgence! Past performance is no guarantee of future results! Amen!

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A friend recently said of Argentine politics, "How come we always have to add a little pepper to the mix?" The same is true of Argentine football. It's as though coaches feel they need to avoid the obvious, safe options in order to distinguish themselves somehow.

Just look at this Olympic football tourney; Argentina should win it in a walk. They can start with a team that includes Ustari, Garay, Mascherano, Banega, Gago, Riquelme, Aguero and Messi - all top quality players. They can play a nice 4-4-2 with the two dimunitive strikers at the top, followed by Riquelme, then Gago and Banega giving some width and Mascherano sweeping behind.

But no. An idiot named Sergio Batista has decided to play some kind of weird Christmas tree with a nobody named Lavezzi at the top, two of the best forwards in the world inexplicably sitting behind him, and Riquelme behind them. In fact, Riquelme spent much of the game against the Ivory Coast sitting behind the midfield line. Explain this to TDH, please.

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If there was one thing you could say about Chelsea under Jose Mourinho, it was that the team played consistently. It didn't matter where or when they played, the odds were probably better than even on a 1-0 victory. Not so with Big Phil, at least so far.

Sure, he's trying out different stuff. But one day, they lose on penalties to Locomotiv in a carbon-copy of the Champions League final (even the sequence of the last kicks was exactly the same, amazing). And the next day, they crush Milan 5-0. Even TDH is afraid to analyze what happened overnight.

Kudos, by the way, to the RRC folks for putting together a better website than Euro 2008's for a two-day, four-team tournament. That's what TDH means by going the extra kilometer. Choo-choo!

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Arshavin says Juande Ramos really convinced him that coming to Spurs would be a great idea. TDH thinks Barcelona's lack of interest may just have something to do with it as well. My, how the mighty $40 million transfers have fallen. Actually, TDH wouldn't pay anywhere near that for Arshavin. Sorry, the kid seems to be a tantrum-prone two-year-old just like dear old Dimitar. Speaking of whom, we'll soon see if Sir can do something about those snits.

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Coloccini is nowhere near the best Argentine central defender. (And no, TDH is no great fan of Milito, either.) But he's probably better than most central defenders who have recently made their way to Tyneside. Asi que bienvenido, Colocho, TDH espere que sigas bien, la verdad es que te necesitamos.

1 Comments:

OpenID crinklebee said...

I was feeling slightly queasy about tomorrow's trip to Old Trafford, but your assurance that our defence has been bolstered by no less a figure than Argentina's possibly-fourth-best centre-half leaves me breathing more easily in advance of an afternoon trip into Manchester City centre to seek out a big screen and take my chances among the natives. So confident in fact that I have just logged onto the Guardian's score-picking competition (www.guardian.co.uk-pickthescore, have a look it's free to enter!) and foretold a 2-2 scoreline. We'll all see exactly how preposterous that looks at 6PM tomorrow...

12:01 PM  

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