Showing posts from April, 2018

Wide World of Soccer - weekend April 28-29

Liverpool FC 0 Stoke City 0. Nuff said.

High drama on Wednesday for leg 2 against Roma. 5-2 lead looks good but Barcelona collapsed to Roma and were eliminated so Roma is not to be underestimated.

QPR takes care of business with a 3-1 win over bottom of the table Birmingham City.

LA Galaxy woes continue coming out on the short end 2-3 to NY Red Bulls. A couple of questionable calls went against LA Galaxy that took a goal off the LA tally and added a PK that was the Red Bull's winner.

LA Galaxy got some more offense but unfortunately their defense cost them.  One of the MLS analyst says that LA's 4-3-3 might be better for them. I speculated about that possibility back on April 13 though at that time I didn't anticipate Zlatan would start which he did.

LAFC in dramatic fashion defeat Seattle 1-0 with a stoppage time free kick!

Elfsborg falls 2-1 to Sundsvall.

Falkenberg plays on Tuesday on the road at Halmstad.

Wide world of soccer: weekend of April 21/22 2018

Hats off to LAFC for rallying from a 2-0 deficit to beat Montreal on the road. If you had said that LAFC would get 4 wins against 2 losses to open season entirely on the road, fans would take it. They have their home opener next weekend.

Liverpool was on the road at West Bromwich cruising with a 2-0 lead only to surrender 2 goals late. The problems of defense reared its head once again!

QPR lost to Brentford 2-1. Not surprising for a road game at a team at the top half of the table.

LA Galaxy fall at home to Atlanta 2-0. Saw the second half of the match on TV. Atlanta had the lead so they were probably not as aggressive on offense. Nonetheless, it seemed they were always more threatening to score while LAG only got weak "half" chances at goal. LAG simply looked inferior to Atlanta.

Falkenberg (FFF) is off to a 4 game win streak with a 3-1 victory over Frej Taby.

Elfsborg plays Monday against Stockholm based Djurgarden.

LAG thus far

LA Galaxy stand at 3 wins 1 draw 3 losses.

Have seen parts of several matches on television.

The 4-3 victory over LAFC highlighted the best and worst of the LA Galaxy: the worst, a defense that always looks on the edge of calamity, the best, an offense that, on this occasion, lived up to the hype.

However, in most other matches, it has been the offense that hasn't shown much life. Aside from that 4 goal explosion against LAFC, LAG has been shut out 3 times, scored 1 goal 2 times (one for a win and one for a loss), and scored 2 goals in the season opening victory.

Thus, at an anemic 8 goals for the season, only 4 clubs have scored less.

Meanwhile, the defense has allowed 10 goals which is middle of the pack.

On paper, their problems appear more on the offense side of the park than the defense side.

However, by the "eyeball" test, it looks like there are problems on both sides of the game.

The defense always looks to be on the edge of being overwhelmed. One would have thou…

Elfsborg wins!

In their fourth match of the season, Elfsborg finally got a victory with a 2-0 win on the road against Brommapojkarna!

Lot of ball watching on that second goal by the defenders, eh?

Below is the CMORE highlight package.

"We are Liverpool: this means more" LFC's latest promo video

Sports is partly about scores and stats but it is mostly about narrative.

"We are Liverpool: this means more" is LFC's latest promo video with great moving images of past and present and the narration of current manager Jurgen Klopp.

Fantastic and moving and I've only been a fan since 2014 and have never been within a hundred miles of Liverpool.

Wide world of Soccer - how the six clubs I follow did

Friday April 13
LAFC beat Vancouver 2-0 on the road
LAFC bounced back from two prior defeats and continue to show the acumen of signing Rossi and Vela who got the goals in the victory.

Saturday April 14
Liverpool defeated Bournemouth 3-0
The three headed front line get a goal apiece in a taking care of business win.

Elfsborg downed by Sirius 1-0 at home
That is now three straight losses for the boys from Boras but no time to panic yet as there are still 27 more matches. For historical context, Elfsborg have been in the top league since 1998. From that time onward, they won the league in 2006 and 2012. They finished second in 2008. They won the Svenska Cup in 2001, 2003 and 2014. Hopefully, they can get their season going real soon!

QPR lost at home to Preston 2-1
Preston is higher up in the table so a loss isn't too surprising.

Chicago 0 LA Galaxy 1
Zlatan has appeared in 3 games and now has 2 game winning goals! Wound up watching the match on the phone via the live stream on Twitter fo…

Chicago v Los Angeles Galaxy

The LA Galaxy and Zlatan take their show on the road to Chicago.

How many minutes will Zlatan play? 

He was in about 20 minutes against LAFC and 30 minutes against SKC. Some speculate 40 minutes in which case, might as well go 45 for a full second half. My "guts" tell me to look for 30 minutes again. This is his first road trip and the weather is likely to be miserable in Chicago so I'm thinking they play it safe with 30 minutes.

Any changes to the line-up that was used against SKC?

That line-up played SKC got their chances and played them pretty even with the exception of two defensive lapses in the early part of the second half which cost LAG the two goals. Thus, I don't see any line-up changes. The only two that could perhaps be considered is putting in Ciani for Steres but I think that unlikely. The other would be to start Lletget instead and have Boateng enter as his sub. But I think that unlikely as well but more possible than Ciani starting.

4-2-3-1 or something…

It is Big-ly: Man City v. Liverpool, Leg Two

Tonight's — Liverpool FC (@LFC) April 10, 2018
The starting XI is pretty much as expected. Admittedly, the bench is depleted; however, hopefully, they won't be called into service other than to provide some fresh defensive energy to close out the match. If they have to call up on the reserves to chase the game, then it would mean Liverpool is in serious trouble!

And here is the starting XI and the bench for Manchester City.
How we're lining-up tonight! 🙌

City XI | Ederson, Walker, Otamendi, Laporte, Fernandinho, De Bruyne, Silva (C), Sane, Sterling, Bernardo, G Jesus

Subs | Bravo, Aguero, Kompany, Foden, Gundogan, Zinchenko, — Manchester City (@ManCity) April 10, 2018
Currently, LFC has a three-goal edge.

If at the end of regulation the aggregate is:
3-0 LFC advances
3-1 LFC advances
3-2 LFC advances
3-3 goes to Extra-Time
3-4 Man City advances
4-4 LFC advances on away goals

The weekend in soccer

Saturday started with the Merseyside Derby.

Everton v. Liverpool 0-0 (draw) 

The Reds with an eye toward the second leg of the Champions League semi-final played a weakened side so a draw was a reasonable outcome.

Hull v. QPR 4-0 (loss)

Ugh. QPR isn't a top level team so don't expect them to win all the time but they are usually at least competitive and they weren't today.

Falkenberg v. Eskilstuna 2-0 (win)

Off to a good start with two wins. Can they keep it up and get back to the top tier? "Laget vid havet!"

Atlanta v. LAFC 5-0 (loss)

Did the stunning loss against LA Galaxy last weekend leave the team still out of sorts? Or perhaps Atlanta is simply too much for LAFC to deal with? In either case, Bob Bradley and the brain trust will need to look at their situation after the glossy start.

Sunday provided two matches for me to follow

Kalmar v. Elfborg 1-0 (loss)

Ooofff .... off to a bad start with two losses. 28 matches to go. Hopefully, they will get their feet under …

Wide world of soccer - LA Galaxy v LAFC

Complete craziness!

IN any language, exciting ....... video compilation of the Zlatan goal call from announcers from around the world!

LAFC made LA Galaxy defenders look like they had concrete shoes on and bang, 3-0 lead!

But the LA Galaxy woke up in the second half and LAFC started to get a little tight.

3-1, with the Lleget goal. Good to see him on the way to full force after so many months of rehab from his foot surgery that could have been career ending.

Zlatan comes into the game!

Boateng crosses and Pontius scores on a diving header, 3-2.

Free kick by LAFC goal keeper and Steres heads it upfield. Zlatan sees that the LAFC goalie is too far from his goal and the properly gauges the flight of the header and on the bounce strikes a swerving shot into the goal, 3-3!

LAFC realizes they could lose this thing and they wake up and start to attack and get shot that hits the post.

As the game appears to be winding down to a draw, LAG pushes forward as the ball goes toward the open space …

Wide world of soccer - LFC v Man City, leg 1

Champions League quarter-finals!

Am guessing Man City is favored but leg one is at Anfield.

The KOP should be loud tonight!

In reading around the various media outlets in the build up, there is concerns at LFC about injuries.

The Echo reports that Gomez, Matip, Klavan, and Can are not available for selection.

Line-up guesses:
GK: Karius
Defense: Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson
Midfield: Henderson, Milner, Oxlade-Chamberlain
Frontline: Mane, Firmino, Salah

Liverpool take a 3-0 lead in leg 1. Here are the highlights!

Mohamed Salah, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Sadio Mane score in the first half!

Wide world of soccer - QPR!

QPR bounce back from their loss to Redding with a 4-1 victory over Norwich.

I had mentioned in my last blog post that I would go find fish and chips if QPR would win a match!

So now, I will need to look around the part of town I live in to see who has them on the menu.

Sheffield Wednesday is another club like QPR and Norwich occupying the middle-ish part of the bottom half of the table.

Come on you R's!

Wide world of soccer - Sweden

Swedish soccer leagues that I follow, Allsvenskan (tier 1) and Superettan (tier 2) have kicked off.

Elfsborg fell 2-1 to historic powerhouse Malmo.

According to, Malmo, AIK, and Ostersunds are the top-three in terms of "market value" of the clubs. Elfsborg is fifth.

According to one odds-maker site, Malmo, AIK, and Djurgarden are front-runners. Elfsborg is seventh.

Last season Elfsborg finished eighth.

In the Superettan, Helsingborg, Halmstad, and Jonkopings are the favorites according to the same odds-making site. Falkenberg is projected fifth.

On the basis of "market value," Helsingborg, Eskiltuna, and Jonkopings are the three strongest. Falkenberg comes in eighth.

Falkenberg kicked off their season with a 3-2 victory over Landskrona.

Falkenberg has punched above their weight the last few years winning the Superettan in 2013 and staying in tier 1 for three seasons. Last season they came up short to making it into the promotion playoffs.