17 August, 2014

EPL 2014/15: Everton v Leicester City Highlights

Timmy Howard couldn't put on another stunning display like his World Cup efforts this summer.  Leicester, for it's part, made the most of it's first time back in the Premiership in 10yrs as 4 minutes from the final whistle, as Wood latched onto a rebound and put it home.

Final 2-2.

Leicester 2 - 2 Everton [Premier League... by V1Voir
video: footytube

EPL 2014/15: Manchester United v Swansea City Highlights

New line up, new highly touted manager in van Gaal, and a new result.

Swansea scored early Sung-Yeung found the back of the net.  It wasn't until the 2nd half until Man U leveled, and what a level as Rooney pulls a bicycle kick goal from 4m out.

Ex Spur Gylfi said it wasn't over though. Scoring in the 72', he put Swansea back on top, and there it held as the Red Devils looked flat, and executed poorly.

Final 2-1 Swansea as Man U loses it's first home opener match since 1972...

Manchester United 1 x 2 Swansea City All Goals... by lancepremium

Video: Footytube

EPL 2014/15: Tottenham v West Ham United Highlights

West Ham always plays Spurs tight and this match was no different.  While many Hammer fans decried the weak attacking lineup for West Ham, Spurs gave them hope with an early harsh red in the box as Naughton was called for a handball in what should have been a no call as the shot was going over and it was a reactionary block.

That said, West Ham beat the Lloris on the ensuing pk, but also beat the inside of the goal as Noble fired just wide.

With nearly 30mins of man advantage, West Ham couldn't make a thing of it and then managed to get one of their own sent off as Collins got a 2nd yellow and their meager advantage trailed away.

In the final seconds of injury time, it wasn't Ade, nor any attacking player for Spurs for that matter, but U21 England international and new signing, left back Eric Dier that wove through the back line, collected a sweet through ball, and netted the winner from the edge of the box.  Final, 1-0 Spurs.

Video: Playwire

EPL 2014/15: Arsenal v Crystal Palace Highlights

And we're back for a new season!

Crystal Palace struck first, and until the waning seconds of the first half, it looked like Arsenal was going to pull a Brazil and dominate possession but still lose.  76% possession for the Gunners, and it wasn't until Puncheon saw a 2nd yellow for CP that Arsenal managed to sneak away with what should have been a runaway win.  2-1 the final.

Arsenal vs Crystal Palace 2-1 by Mylife1971
Video: footytube

22 June, 2014

World Cup 2014: Portugal vs USA Preview

5 GF 5 GA

That's the head to head matchup stats for Portugal and USA heading into tonight's anticipated match.

But that isn't the deciding factor. C. Ronaldo has been practicing for only 15-30mins for the last few days with the team (don't let the icing fool you, as we should all be doing that after games). Pepe, the Brazilian born Portuguese player, is out with a red card he stupidly picked up against Germany for a taunting scrape of a headbutt. Defender Coentrao and GK Rui Patricio are both out with injuries. That's a heady bunch of good players that Portugal is going to sorely miss.

For the USMNT, Altidore is out. This is arguably, just a big a loss for us as for Portugal to be missing several players as while Altidore has had trouble scoring, with only 2 goals for club/country since December... December (let that sink in) and both of those, while good, were against Nigeria in a warmup friendly. Wondowlowski is probably the closest forward that we have in terms of Altidore's style, but he's not as fast (although I think he's a more opportunistic forward in the mold of Joe Max Moore style scoring) and Johannson, the US born but lived in Iceland player who has better passing and vision than Altidore, and a respectable scoring rate in the Dutch Eredivisie. The US isn't really set up for Johannson's style which may likely see us settle on putting Dempsey and his broken nose up top alone.

We haven't played Portugal in nearly 12 years, but we did win the last two, including a surprise 3-2 win in Korea during the 2002 World Cup. Unfortuately, records don't mean much, and are only predictors. The important thing here is both teams need the win to get through. Portugal needs to come out hard as they need to overcome a 4 goal deficit and need to make that up against the US and Ghana (who just took Germany 2-2 yesterday).

Expect a high tempo game, and hopefully, we score late as our cheap attempts at possession/bunker defense are our biggest liability as seen against Ghana. Also be ready for some flopping in the box or near as C. Ronaldo taking free kicks is a dangerous sight. The US also needs to be careful on the counter attack as Dempsey is lazy coming back when losing possession and will be a defensive liability anywhere but up top, especially with his broken nose excuse.

Our prediction, a 2-1 result for the US (with Bethany Dempsey standing in for Clint and Irina Shayk for her man C. Ronaldo), with the US then automatically qualifying for the 2nd round.

Photo: USSoccer, SportsIllustrated,

13 June, 2014

World Cup: Australia vs Chile Preview

This one is going to be the anticlimactic finish to the day for most. Australia v Chile. So let's get to it. A few to choose from, but most are recent for Australia.
Mark Schwarzer 
Elias Figueroa

Schwarzer has been a steady rock in the back for Australia.  With a career some 20 years and 109 appearance for the Socceroos, Schwarzer has appeared in 3 World Cups, Uefa Cup twice, and been a team Player of the Year and nearly as long player in the EPL.  Schwarzer's abilities can't be looked over, and he can be perhaps considered the best Aussie player ever.  He finally announced his retirement this year.

Figueroa has 47 appearances for Chile with two goals to his name at the international level.  Perhaps the most visually/spacially aware player in the game in defense, Elias is by far the most storied Chilean player of all time.

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