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  1. #221
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Lexington, KY

    Question Arsenal dealings?

    Looks like there's a lot of discussion over Nasri:
    http://soccernet.espn.go.com/news/st...540641&cc=5901

    That might be a good fit with Arsenal. And Hleb will probably go, if that deal goes through.
    Cheers,
    Lavabe

  2. #222
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Lexington, KY

    Thumbs up Off-season news at Anfield

    Well how about we head out to see Sir Paul headline a concert:
    http://www.liverpoolfc.tv/news/drill...80531-0857.htm

    And in Liverpool Football news, Ryan Babel is out of Euro 2008 with ankle ligament issues.

    Cheers,
    Lavabe

  3. #223
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Yadkinville NC
    Alright guys, catch me up! I've returned from the land of no cell phone service, no cable/satellite, basically no information whatsoever. I did manage to find a local sports bar in Lawrenceburg KY to watch the US/England match (what a waste of 90 minutes from the US team) but thats as far as I got in following sports while I was up there. Have Arsenal signed Nasri already?

  4. #224
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Lexington, KY

    Unhappy Gazza having troubles

    Quote Originally Posted by BlueDevilJay View Post
    Alright guys, catch me up! I've returned from the land of no cell phone service, no cable/satellite, basically no information whatsoever. I did manage to find a local sports bar in Lawrenceburg KY to watch the US/England match (what a waste of 90 minutes from the US team) but thats as far as I got in following sports while I was up there. Have Arsenal signed Nasri already?
    No signing yet, but as of today, "arsespeak" (that's an arsenal blog, not an expletive) still is waiting for a deal.

    In VERY sad news, Gazza is just falling apart:
    http://soccernet.espn.go.com/news/st...541737&cc=5901

    I wish the best for him and his family.

    Lavabe

  5. #225
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Tennessee
    Soccer fan here.

    In the late 70s I played in the LLSAL - Little League Soccer Association of London. The two squads I played for were named after Man United and Chelsea, the bigs of which are celebrated now, but at the time, Liverpool was dominant, and in '78 Ipswich Town won the final.

    We played on Hampstead Heath, which I am informed is better known these days for interesting noctural get-togethers. From Google searches I cannot find evidence that the fields at Heath or the LLSAL still exist.

    While living in the UK I did get to see Arsenal play in person. Frank Stapleton was one of their greats at the time.

    I don't know why, but I've always enjoyed watching British soccer more than any US matches, whether college or pro. Maybe it is the enthusiastic crowd, singing in unison. Sometimes the fields in the UK just seem more expansive - opening up the game - I don't know. But I do know that my son's EA Sports FIFA game is fantastic on the PC. It has the exact feel in terms of the crowds, the field, etc. It is way fun, I heartily recommend it to anyone who has nostalgia for English football.

  6. #226
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Yadkinville NC
    I agree with you wholeheartedly about the English matches being a lot better to watch, hands down. The MLS needs to adopt the lower leagues in the US as Division 1 and 2, and get a relegation/promotion thing going here as well. Once ESPN starts carrying Premiership matches and gets more Americans into the game (which it will, once people actually follow an EPL team through an entire season), the MLS will be demanded to do this, and do away with the single entity setup they currently have, thus making it better for all of us. The relegation/promotion system is something I pray makes it way to the States. Then truly every match would count.

  7. #227
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Tennessee
    BDJ, we may agree on very little politically but ... you had me at "relegation/promotion thing". Nearly every US pro sports league could stand to have such a system, some more than others of course. One can almost look at the ludicrous NBA draft lottery as an example of a Rube Goldberg device that was concocted specifically to avoid such a multi-tiered system (yet it is disguised as a means to avoid nonplayoff teams from tanking their efforts to get a high draft pick).

    It also seems to me to be a great way to deal with the small market/large market issue without artificial salary caps, luxury tax, and under-the-table payments to players (it didn't start or end with Joe Smith).

  8. #228
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Lexington, KY

    Smile It's the most wonderful time of the year

    Quote Originally Posted by BlueDevilJay View Post
    Have Arsenal signed Nasri already?
    Now it looks like you'll have to wait until after Euro 2008. But check out the other targets on Wenger's list:
    http://ukpress.google.com/article/AL...W7lnKyziph1D6A

    Flamini to AC Milan.

    Cheers,
    Lavabe

  9. #229
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Yadkinville NC
    Quote Originally Posted by cspan37421 View Post
    BDJ, we may agree on very little politically but ... you had me at "relegation/promotion thing". Nearly every US pro sports league could stand to have such a system, some more than others of course. One can almost look at the ludicrous NBA draft lottery as an example of a Rube Goldberg device that was concocted specifically to avoid such a multi-tiered system (yet it is disguised as a means to avoid nonplayoff teams from tanking their efforts to get a high draft pick).

    It also seems to me to be a great way to deal with the small market/large market issue without artificial salary caps, luxury tax, and under-the-table payments to players (it didn't start or end with Joe Smith).
    Hey we don't have to agree on everything right? That's what makes sports so cool, I mean especially soccer. If Im out somewhere wearing my CF4 jersey, and another Arsenal fan is nearby, I've typically got an instant friend, same as when I spot someone wearing an EPL jersey.

    The relegation/promotion setup would work very easily at least with the MLS (other major sports it might be a little harder due to just how much money they pull in, and some wouldn't be willing to part with that money on a yearly basis) due mainly to the fact that the MLS teams aren't making HUGE amounts of revenue yet, so they wouldn't be giving up quite as much should they be "relegated". I'm glad the system is in place in England, because it would be hard to convince any of the Big 4 to sign on to something like that now, giving up the TV contracts, deals, $, etc should they get relegated to the Championship.

  10. #230
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Yadkinville NC
    Quote Originally Posted by Lavabe View Post
    Now it looks like you'll have to wait until after Euro 2008. But check out the other targets on Wenger's list:
    http://ukpress.google.com/article/AL...W7lnKyziph1D6A

    Flamini to AC Milan.

    Cheers,
    Lavabe
    Yeah I saw that the other day. (re: Nasri) And Flamini has been gone to AC since right after the end of the season. The deal was announced not too long afterwards. Hleb will be the next to exit, but I don't see anyone else leaving. Those Chelsea folks who are rumoring Manu to be wearing their shirt next season are dreaming.

  11. #231

    Euro 08 Precidtions...and minimal analysis

    Group A

    I like Portugal to win the group and Czech Republic to also advance. Turkey is inconsistent, but could play well and advance if they are on an upswing.

    Group B

    Germany should cruise through this group but 2nd place is up for grabs. I think I'll take Croatia. I honestly dont know much about the three other than Germany, so this is really a guess.

    Group C

    This is the big boy. I think the Dutch will win this group and France will advance. Hard to pick just two, but the Italians losing Carnovvaro is tough, so I'll take France.

    Group D

    I think Spain will win the group, even though Torres won't be playing at Anfield. Greece will surprise people...again (think Euro 04)

    Knockout Stage

    Quarter Finals

    Portugal over Croatia
    Czech Republic over Germany
    The Netherlands over Greece
    France over Spain

    Semi Finals

    Portugal over Czech Republic
    The Netherlands over France

    Finals

    The Netherlands over Portugal


    I am so excited about this tournament. I just have a feeling about the Dutch and I think they will do very well. Football is unpredictable so I'm not sure why I try, but hey, who knows?

  12. #232
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Lexington, KY
    Quote Originally Posted by Ben63 View Post
    Group D

    I think Spain will win the group, even though Torres won't be playing at Anfield. Greece will surprise people...again (think Euro 04)

    Knockout Stage

    Quarter Finals

    Portugal over Croatia
    Czech Republic over Germany
    The Netherlands over Greece
    France over Spain

    Semi Finals

    Portugal over Czech Republic
    The Netherlands over France

    Finals

    The Netherlands over Portugal


    I am so excited about this tournament. I just have a feeling about the Dutch and I think they will do very well. Football is unpredictable so I'm not sure why I try, but hey, who knows?
    Group A: Portugal, Czech
    Group B: Germany, Austria (home team...1st game w/Croatia at VIENNA)
    Group C: France (Nasri), Netherlands
    Group D: Spain*, Russia

    * El Nino scored at the Bridge ... expect him to go nuts here.

    Quarters
    Austria over Portugal
    Germany over Czech
    France over Russia
    Spain (El Nino scores 2 goals) over Netherlands

    Semis
    Germany over Austria (in a vicious game)
    France over Spain

    Final
    France (w/no Barthez and Zizou) over Germany

    I wish England was in it!

    Just my two cents...
    Cheers,
    Lavabe
    Last edited by Lavabe; 06-06-2008 at 05:31 PM. Reason: Slim down quote

  13. #233
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Seoul, Korea
    My gut feeling picks for things...

    Group A: Portugal and Switzerland
    Group B: Germany and Croatia
    Group C: Netherlands and Romania
    Group D: Spain and Greece

    I'll stop there to see how it plays out before predicting the knockout stages. Though if I had to pick a winner right now I think I'd pick Spain(they've got the talent and at some point they'll stop screwing up at major tournaments(like when Raul finally stops getting time up front).

  14. #234
    Quote Originally Posted by Deslok View Post
    Group C: Netherlands and Romania
    ??????

    I respect you alot Deslok but Romania?? Do you see something the rest of us don't??

  15. #235
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Seoul, Korea
    Quote Originally Posted by Ben63 View Post
    ??????

    I respect you alot Deslok but Romania?? Do you see something the rest of us don't??
    Romania are a lot better than people think. In qualifiers they only lost once, at Bulgaria, topping the group over Holland(whom they beat at home and tied on the road). They don't have any real superstars(Mutu is very good, but not a name that comes up for POY awards and such it seems), but they are very solid all over the field. I would be very confident of them advancing from any group but this one.

    Honestly I'm more worried about my Holland pick than I am Romania, because Holland is going boom or bust this tourney. Either a first round exit, or a spot in the semis, but hard to tell which way it will go(but I'm picking them here despite losing Babel for the tourney, that's how much talent they have). I think France is in for a hard fall. Generational wonder teams often fall hard and fast, and this is the stage I think it happens to them(especially with the group they were given). And Italy with a few injuries, and the invariable complacency off the World Cup will struggle to get points.

    But its not that I think those 2 teams are bad, everyone in this group is better than Austria, Poland, Sweden, Russia, Turkey, and Switzerland(I picked the last to go through figuring on a host country bounce, Austria isn't good enough for that to even matter).

  16. #236
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Lexington, KY

    Angry Austria

    HOW didn't they tie it up against Croatia? I still don't see how Croatia survived their game in Vienna.

    AAARRRGH!!!

    Worst moment of the weeekend: Frei going down for the tourney.

  17. #237
    Quote Originally Posted by Lavabe View Post
    HOW didn't they tie it up against Croatia? I still don't see how Croatia survived their game in Vienna.

    AAARRRGH!!!

    Worst moment of the weeekend: Frei going down for the tourney.
    Yeah I couldn't believe that, Croatia played terrible, makes it even worse that the 3 Lions are not competing.

    Does anyone think that was a penalty? To give call that early in the game, I thought it was undeserved. Really killed Austria for the rest of the half. They picked it up in the 2nd but could not complete their chances.

    Very unfortunate for Frei, I really feel for him and his country.

  18. #238
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Yadkinville NC
    Good games in EURO over the weekend but Im much more excited about the US performance vs Argentina yesterday. Yes it was just a 0-0 draw, but it wasn't a typical draw. We attacked them, Howard saved our butt numerous times, but in the 2nd half, we were the better team for the majority of it. That is until Pablo was sent off in a horrendous officiating decision. We were honestly taking it to them until that point, and even down to 10, we still attacked like we had 11. Great performance by the US mens team, and Freddy Adu needs to be in the starting 11, no questions asked.

  19. #239
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Lexington, KY

    Exclamation I loathe ManU, but...

    ... this is a promising development for all of the EPL:
    http://soccernet.espn.go.com/news/st...544566&cc=5901

    ManU is annoyed at Real's public attempt to get Ronaldo. If telling dad (FIFA) on Real gets Real to stop the usual raiding they do, I'm all for it.

    But I would still like to see Ronaldo leave.

    Cheers,
    Lavabe

  20. #240
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Seoul, Korea
    Ugh, pretty ugly performance by Romania IMO. Played way too conservatively(which isn't terribly surprising for a team that hasn't been contending in awhile in the first match of a Euro championship). Plus their set play kicks were off today. Ahhh well, they got the point.

    Now we'll see if the Dutch can get the Italians to open up a bit. I'm not sure Italy is going to score at all in the competition.

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