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Artful's Soccer Thread

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Re: Artful's Soccer Thread

Postby Mookie4ever » Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:55 pm

dream_017 wrote:I will be coaching my sons U8 team this fall. They will be playing 8v8. Any tips, drills, practice plans or other info that would be helpful? I played for 10+ years as a youth. Thanks, I'll hang up and listen :-B


I coached U9 this year and the most fun and IMO most useful drill that we did was play keep away. The boys had to spread out and pass the ball to keep it away from the 3 coaches. It's a lot of fun and they learn spacing and passing. Good to do at the end of practices.
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Re: Artful's Soccer Thread

Postby teddy ballgame » Fri Aug 20, 2010 4:43 pm

Nice result for Bayern today, getting the GWG in added time. They were lucky to get out of there with a win after being so sloppy in the final third for most of the day.
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Re: Artful's Soccer Thread

Postby The Artful Dodger » Fri Aug 20, 2010 8:50 pm

teddy ballgame wrote:Nice result for Bayern today, getting the GWG in added time. They were lucky to get out of there with a win after being so sloppy in the final third for most of the day.


I didn't get to see the match today and will catch a replay some time (ESPN3 has it, I think). My impression is that Bayern still lack a proper #9 and it's a similar situation to like what the German national team has. Klose possesses good off-the-ball movement, but his presence slows down the attack while Gomez really hasn't been half the talent he was once touted to be.

FWIW, this was former England manager Steve McClaren's first match as manager of Wolfsburg (previously Middlesbrough and Twente, more recently) and is also the first English-born gaffer to manage in the Bundesliga. Despite the loss today, I'd say Wolfsburg will contend for Bayern's title as they did the previous season before last (so will HSV, Schalke, and perhaps Bayer Leverkusen). I do remember Wolfsburg signing promising Danish international center back Simon Kjaer for a bargain (I know United and I believe Arsenal wanted to buy Kjaer) and from what I've read, he had a fantastic debut.

BTW, Soccernet's frontpage currently reads "Ireland looks back in anger". Stephen Ireland, now officially an Aston Villa player is ranting that he felt unwanted at Manchester City, especially when Roberto Mancini took over the managerial post last Winter. Clever reference at the song, "Don't Look Back in Anger" by Oasis (both of the Gallaghers are rabid City fans). Can't blame Ireland for feeling that way, Citeh absolutely mistreated him.
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Re: Artful's Soccer Thread

Postby A Fleshner Fantasy » Sat Aug 21, 2010 10:34 am

2-0 Arsenal!!!!! They've looked dominant this game, could have at least 4 or 5 goals if they had finished better. Great to see after their effort against Pool that left something to be desired.
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Re: Artful's Soccer Thread

Postby j24jags » Sun Aug 22, 2010 1:05 pm

What a finish to that Man U-Fulham match. Tied at 1 with about 10 minutes left. Man U started attacking, they really wanted those three points, they finally scored off a corner (own goal off the defender's knee). After a handball in the box by a Fulham defender, Nani had a PK saved, and then Fulham scored in the 88th minute or so off a beautiful corner leading to a tie. Great finish. Man U will be disappointed with a draw there though.
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Re: Artful's Soccer Thread

Postby The Artful Dodger » Sun Aug 22, 2010 1:23 pm

j24jags wrote:What a finish to that Man U-Fulham match. Tied at 1 with about 10 minutes left. Man U started attacking, they really wanted those three points, they finally scored off a corner (own goal off the defender's knee). After a handball in the box by a Fulham defender, Nani had a PK saved, and then Fulham scored in the 88th minute or so off a beautiful corner leading to a tie. Great finish. Man U will be disappointed with a draw there though.


To be fair, Fulham deserved no less than a draw. It was a spotty performance from United as a whole, but the defending from the two Fulham goals was atrocious. Just one of those days where Rio Ferdinand was missed at the back, as he still remains United's most complete centerback, defending set pieces and staying composed against the run of play. The tactics weren't particularly good from Fergie either, because he shouldn't have played a 4-4-2 formation against a more rigid side in Fulham, especially away. It works better against weaker opponents, but then again, Newcastle last week were able to expose the soft midfield with an extra man in the center of the park.

Fair play to Fulham, as they looked good when they did attack. However, Nani shouldn't have taken the penalty, when Giggs and Berbatov are better spot kick takers and it could have been a 3-1 win. Disappointing result nonetheless, even though I'd say this was likely to pan out as a draw given that any fixture at Craven Cottage is a tricky game. Still, United should have taken a game they didn't particularly play well in, by the scruff of the neck. I'll probably be irked about this for a few days.

Unfair to compare United to Chelsea at the moment, but I will say that one thing Carlo Ancelotti has instilled in this Chelsea side is a ruthlessness to take advantage of the other teams' mistakes. Granted, West Brom and Wigan are both piss-poor sides and made a mess of things once a goal behind, Chelsea took their chances well despite not playing up that well to expectation. Two 6-nils to two sub-par teams and with three patsies next on the schedule (Stoke - they're not half as good away as at home, West Ham, and Blackpool), they should easily run away with those results. Then again, Chelsea coughed up points where they shouldn't have last year, like United did.

Not surprised about Blackpool losing 6-nil to Arsenal. If anything, it shows how poor Wigan are on the wings of losing 4-nil to the supposed whipping boys Blackpool. I'm shocked Newcastle beat Aston Villa at home, 6-nil, however. Both teams were rancid at the back, playing suicidal football but it was the barcodes taking their chances and Villa were really piss-poor in the second half.
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Re: Artful's Soccer Thread

Postby The Artful Dodger » Sun Aug 22, 2010 1:33 pm

Outside the Premier League, Barcelona completed a comeback win over Sevilla yesterday in the second home leg of the Spanish Super Cup. Last week, Barca lost 3-1 in Sevilla, but put on a fantastic performance to win 4-0 and the tie. It is a preseason curtain raiser to the new La Liga season, which starts this Saturday.

Also, Inter Milan beat Roma in the Italian Super Cup, 3-1 and the Serie A season also starts Saturday. Should be a more wide open league now that Jose Mourinho (of course at Real Madrid) has been replaced at Inter by the incompetent Rafa Benitez (former Liverpool manager and a rival of Mourinho's). Roma and Juventus should contend, whereas Milan have doubts given their debt situation and their aging squad, but their names should also be in thrown in the hat as well.
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Re: Artful's Soccer Thread

Postby The Artful Dodger » Mon Aug 23, 2010 9:13 pm

Had the Man City-Liverpool match today on while working and City won, 3-nil, in a game I'm a bit surprised didn't result in a dour draw. The only thought that could come to me about the game was what in the world was Roy Hodgson thinking in having Liverpool line up 4-4-2? City like to play three defensive-oriented midfielders in the center of the park (Nigel De Jong, Yaya Toure, and Gareth Barry - a DM to some extent) and with the extra man in the middle compared to Liverpool (Lucas, Steven Gerrard), this wasn't going to bode well. Liverpool were lethargic in attack because of that mismatch in the midfield, which also forced the wingers to help Lucas/Gerrard. Had Liverpool played a 4-2-3-1 as Hodgson normally implements (in his days at Fulham, anyways) to counter with City's 4-2-3-1, it would have been the boring stalemate I would have expected going in.

On that note and an unrelated one at that, I hope United don't go into another big game playing 4-4-2.
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Re: Artful's Soccer Thread

Postby lastingsgriller » Tue Aug 24, 2010 10:19 am

the Boys in Blue were looking good!!! I caught the condensed version of the game this morning..
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Re: Artful's Soccer Thread

Postby The Artful Dodger » Tue Aug 24, 2010 5:52 pm

I have some catching up to do with a couple of Champions League qualifying playoff games today.

The upset of the day had to do with Sevilla (one of Spain's top four teams, although that's quite a gap between Barca and Real Madrid), losing to Braga at home today. Last week, Braga mustered a 1-nil victory in Portugal and came away with a 4-3 win at the Sanchez Pizjuan today. The other thrilling match of the day involved Sampdoria (Italy) and Werder Bremen. Werder held a 3-1 advantage going into Sampdoria, but Samp leaped out in front with a 3-nil lead and the lead on aggregate. Werder would net a late goal to equalize the tie at 4-4 and because each team had an away goal, it went to extra time. Claudio Pizarro scored the winner for Bremen to complete a thrilling comeback to answer one furious comeback from Samp.

Tomorrow is Tottenham's home leg against Young Boys. YB have the 3-2 advantage heading in, but is a tenuous one at that heading to the Lane. If last week's match and the other qualifiers are any indication, it could make for entertaining viewing, even though I anticipate that Spurs will prevail.
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