OT: 2019-2020 EPL and other European domestic leagues

use this thread to discuss EPL and other domestic leagues, e.g. la liga, bundesliga, serie a, etc

The 2019-2020 EPL season has kicked off today, and Liverpool are leading Norwich City 4-0 at the half, with Norwich looking threatening going forward but utterly shambolic at the back. Alisson has gone off with what looks to be a hamstring injury.

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Comments

I think like last year City and Liverpool will run away as first and second in some order, but can any other team keep pace? Who will escape the "next four" to finish 3rd and 4th? Which middle table team will be a surprise? Absolutely thrilled to have the prem back

VB born, class of '14

Arsenal and Spuds will round out the top 4...Everton will surprise and possibly claim 5th place.

Thanks, GGC. The transfer thread is no longer necessary.

Hope it's just a hammie and nothing more for Alisson.

My bung-hole is perpetually clenched until news breaks, hoping that it's nothing major. The way his knee gave truly concerns me, at least we're up 4-0...

via GIPHY

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

looked to me like he slipped/twisted an ankle on his left leg but then immediately grabbed his right hamstring when he fell after he kicked. i hope it's a muscle and nothing more

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

at least we're up 4-0...and in the 49th minute it could easily be 7-2

you never know, Poggers or Eriksen could always move to madrid

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Going to my first European club match tomorrow. FC Emmen v. Ajax! Anything I should know before going? I loosely follow EPL and MLS, but don't know anything about the Dutch league.

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

European games are just such a different atmosphere. There really is nothing that quite compares. We went to Bayern-Leipzig in Munich last year and stood behind goal. Absolutely nuts, especially because most people absolutely loathe Leipzig.

Only thing I wish I'd known in advance is what an absolute madhouse it would be trying to leave. We essentially had to sprint out of the stadium and over to the S-bahn station just to keep up with the crowd.

Well, I've never heard of FC Emmen, and Ajax was about 10 seconds away from being a finalist in the European Championship. So, I would expect a big Ajax win. The Dutch league is...not exactly know for their defense. It's basically the Big XII.

Ajax has an American in their first team - Sergiño Dest (#28) who plays fullback. He started a number of games with the usual starters in preseason, so it's possible he could play. He may also be an unused sub.

Enjoy the match, it should be fun!

I would love it if more of the US youth players could go to Ajax that's the perfect place to grow and learn the game

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Luckily, they just acquired another U-20 international, Alex Mendez. He was a fixture for the US at the U-20 World Cup this past summer and recently joined. He will start out on Jong Ajax (reserve team) and hopefully work his way into the picture in the next couple years. I believe they also have another youth player, Joshua Pynadath. Many clubs in Germany and The Netherlands are starting to see the value in young US talent.

I've found myself watching a lot less EPL in favor of Bundesliga over the last few years. Excited that Koln is back in the top tier, though that complicates my rooting interests, especially given that the very first game is against Wolfsburg.

Unfortunately, AFN is hot garbage, and isn't showing ANY European games for the foreseeable future. Instead, we get the WNBA and the NASCAR truck series for the duration of deployment.

Something tells me if Norwich can sort out defending they could be a surprise they play fun stuff

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

The first half of Spurs-Aston Villa was excruciating to watch. Tottenham had many chances and could not 'stick it in'. One match in and NDOMBELE is worth all the money.

The last 30 minutes were promising, but the key is to get that sharpness for all 90. Having Vertonghen, Son, and Alli would help.

VB born, class of '14

Arsenal will be fielding a fairly weak team tomorrow given injuries and the ridiculous situation surrounding Ozil and Kola. I hope they catch whoever is doing this to them and give them the jail time they deserve. Here's hoping Newcastle is as bad as everyone thinks they're going to be.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Newcastle without Benitez probably means a relegation battle. The AFTV guys are up there and they interviewed a NUFC fan...it just sounds grim. They're trying to organize boycotts of matches, etc. The owner really is the EPL's Dan Snyder.

Should be a good opportunity for 3 points away even with a weakened roster.

The owner of Citeh's cousin bought Newcastle in the offseason...Mike Ashley is out as far as I know. Shameful indeed, though.

That didn't go through. Ashley is still the owner unfortunately.

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Damn...I've had a soft spot for the magpies since Keegan was their manager....pity

Guendouzi, Nelson, Willock, Chambers, and Mkhitaryan all starting. Pepe, Ceballos, lacazette, and Luiz on the bench

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Mkhi has been an exclusively negative presence over the first 25 minutes.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Guessing Mkhi and Xhaka both off at the half. Both have been awful.

Xhaka is doing some dirty work that's not being noticed. Think he's fine for now. Mkhi needs to be subbed asap.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

That was....a half of soccer.

Willock and Nelson look the part, good energy. Chambers looks good. Can't be totally disappointed, some good things going on that will pay off later for the club.

I'll never complain about 3 points on the road. The youngsters looked good, Auba was himself, and the defense was solid with some good protection from Xhaka and Guendouzi. The new guys all looked shaky as to be expected.

AMN was MOTM for me.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Pulisic on the bench today for Chelsea. Shame, I was looking forward to seeing him playing in the EPL.

King Alum of the House Hokie, the First of His Name, Khal of the Turkey Legs, The rightful Heir to the Big Board, the Unbanned, Breaker of Trolls and Father of Gritty

Hell be on second half

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

I can't tell if yesterday's result was more of ManU showing the potential they have, or more of Chelsea just being that awful on the back line.

Probably a combination of both.

King Alum of the House Hokie, the First of His Name, Khal of the Turkey Legs, The rightful Heir to the Big Board, the Unbanned, Breaker of Trolls and Father of Gritty

Comes down to finishing. One team finished their chances, the other clanged the goal post a couple of times. Of course, that felt like most of the games this weekend outside of City.

I'm more of an optimistic united fan than most and I didnt even see that result coming. My biggest worry this season is if Rashford or martial cant deliver where the goals would come from. They showed up and Pogba showed more flashes from a deeper position that was encouraging. Thought he was better when he moved more forward into a more forward central role. That all said maguire and wan bissakka was a huge refreshing sight for sore eyes dulled by too many years of jones and smalling at the back. I'll be more intrigued how they play at molineaux against a testy wolves side before I get excited but this game was refreshing.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Probably both. If Abraham had scored instead of hitting the post during Chelsea's initial burst it would have changed the flow of the game. The youth of this Chelsea team will be interesting to watch during the season. Everyone has been calling for it for so long but if you start Zouma and Christensen as a center back pairing in your season opener you're gonna have a bad time. Lazy defending from Zouma that led to the pen.

As a United fan, it was good to start off the season with a win no matter the opponent. Next week at Wolves will probably be a bigger test than the Chelsea game was. No disrespect to Chelsea, but they're definitely rebuilding and have the transfer ban and Wolves are on the rise. They had our number a few times last season, as well.

It was good to see the new United boys all have good games. I think I was most impressed with Maguire. He should be good being the most defensive defender in history and all, but a lot of pressure comes with that tag and he seemed to do fine. He had a lot of very calm headed clearances that I can't remember seeing from any United defender recently... probably because I've been watching Phil Jones flail at balls for the last 10 years.

Here's hoping it's not just a flash in the pan. I think if this United team can gain some confidence and momentum they'll be challenging for the title third place at least (I'm realistic, hahaha). Yesterday felt like a game with Fergie in charge and those have been few and far between since he left.

Cant agree more United had chelseas number with pace on the counter attack Zouma doesnt look all that good anymore. Maguire looked so refreshing not that the bar is awfully high from smalling and jones over the last few years but to see someone just dealing with it time and time again was nice. If the front line can be consistent enough top 4 should be achievable but if the youth in the front line and a few injuries hit hard we will be hoping the europa league route works. The best bit was how under Ole we actually are trying to press in packs finally instead of sitting back in a shell like Mou had us.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Sitting Luiz is coaches choice. Letting him go is coaches madness.

Pogba and Luiz have some very real long ball capacity. They can drop it on a dime from far away. World class stuff that can impact games.

Yes u let some pacy forward devastate him in space he's going to show his age, but for fooks sake, the guy has some wisdom he could share with the team.

The formation was right but Kante must have been hurt.

Still the real problem to me was the soft play by Pedro, and another forward giving up the ball when you could least afford it. Combined with Aspilaqueta and the player never to be named who honestly doesn't look capable of playing at a premier league level.

Coach has got some work to do. If he can't sure up the center he's gotta find Azpiliqueta's speed and anticipation for him.

MM no business in the premier league. Decent skill no physical differentiation. CP may or may not stick in the league but he is 10x better than MM.

Russian really needs to start looking for a coach now. Lampard is too full of himself to course correct.

lol and people around here think dcwilson is negative about Fuente????????????????????????????????????

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Hope he doesnt watch the super cup today because if you thought United was devastating on the counter liverpool are gonna put 10 in the net today.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

My post may not travel well. Still maintain Lampard's judgement is highly suspect, but that midfield may save his bacon. Gonna be a hard year as they have Champion's schedule. Lotsa added pressure and matches for a team with some gaps... don't see how they can afford key injuries. Chelsea looked really good today, though I didn't intensely / analytically watch. Jorgino and Kante and mebbe even Kovacic looked like they had a very good day today. That midfield may save the day, though it will be tough because they are still lacking components. I wouldn't be surprised to see a 4-4-2 with Puliisic outside mid. Hope he can pull off that left forward position, he looked fairly nervous playing it today, even though he got some really hopeful stuff done (assist, goal called back offside, cross his boys just weren't paying attention to). Would be very exciting to see Pulisic as a part of a very strong midfield group. Still feel like he needs to be that false 9 type of middie... most dangerous when he has options...not sure Chelsea is the place to learn how to play it.

CesarA.... come on man.... letting the big man firmino beat you on the trap pull? Early in the half? Been a bad few days for this guy. I'll take Pedro getting his pocket picked (I think it was him) in the worst way again because he played relatively well... but damn son there are some guys who people pick on because they know they will give up howlers at just the wrong time. Stop being that guy. (in case he is reading this)

Not negative regarding Fuente. Mebbe the way things turned out woulda liked to see Bud have had a crack at the job... but understand why things got decided the way they did.

Sort of reminds me of home.

It's not a bad comparison...Lane and Anfield are both known as raucous atmospheres with a feverish fanbase and kind of an odd, disjointed architecture. Opponents hate playing there.

YNWA is one of my favorite traditions. Which is weird as a United fan, but it reminds me of Enter Sandman. It gives me chills every time just watching on TV.

Mood! 🏆 🏆s

We played like rubbish, but man, I'll never get used to the feeling of corralling silverware. Proud of my reds!

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

My word... 3 of our new signings got significant minutes and all 3 were huge today. Ceballos was unreal. Absolutely massive. And Pepe was only on for 45 minutes but still won the most take-ons on the field. Luiz might have been partially or mostly culpable on the goal, but otherwise locked it down.

Really liking the feel of the squad right now. Don't think we'll get the result at Anfield, though Pool is showing vulnerabilities, but we're off to a good start this season.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

If this keeps up the top priority will be a permanent transfer for Ceballos. Really pumped to see him against the top sides.

A solid bit of bitching from Dyche about alleged Arsenal shithousing/diving after the match as well...imagine doing that with Ashley Barnes on your roster.

Don't get your hopes up for a permanent Ceballos transfer. The RM board LOVES them some young Spanish players and values them above all else. The only hope for Arsenal is that Zizou doesn't seem to rate him properly.

Just a couple weeks ago for a team willing to eat part of the golfer's contract, the Ceballos transfer probably could have been permanent. Zizou after tucking in the little Belgian, is on knees praying someone will notice the golfer can play some ball. Were I Zizou, I would march in with that ultimatum. Ceballos permanently with the proviso the golfer comes with. Who knows if Kroos can look young again and crush open shots like he did, mebbe zizou is just using the golfer as an example. Mebbe they even knock the little ball around in the golfer's back yard. Certainly the Golfer and Ceballos if packaged, and if they both keep playing well would make alot of Premeir GMs nervous about the balance of power.

Dang that first half spurs played alright, but KDB put in two majestic assists and could have had a third to Gündogan. It feels like they have 12 on the field sometimes. City is just so impressive

VB born, class of '14

Man, that disallowed City goal at the end. Seems correct according to the laws...but has that ever satisfied anyone here with CFB or the NFL when a game is decided by it? Instant replay is such a heavy issue and now it's the EPL's turn. Going to be interesting this year.

VAR is good, actually.

As a liverpool fan, I'm always going to be happy when city drop points. As a fan of the game, that was a disappointing way to finish what had been a pretty decent match. But as someone who had the first 6 correct in a 10 game parlay that was infuriating.

Who had Teemu Pukki for the golden boot?

Trying to decide whether to throw him into my fantasy team or not

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

So did you? That man is on fire.

Probably won't be able to say it much this campaign, so on that note, "Liverpool, top of the league, Liverpool Liverpool top of the league" 😁

Edit: This aged well 😁 (thanks to Pogba [hoping he gets a fresh start in Jan.]), on to the first BIG test, Gunners are looking decent thus far this season, lot of youth and talent, looking forward to Saturday, good luck!

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Up the Reds! ⚽🔥🕊️🔥 #DownedTheGoons what a game! Had tons of chances left in the table for both teams. Really wanted that clean sheet. For another week though "top of the league, top of the league, Liverpool Liverpool top of the league!" #TheUnbearables

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

#TheUnbearables

Is a pretty funny typo considering how hated Liverpool is by many fanbases in England haha.

I'd say on this board as well with all the chatter. Its a long season to start out so full of confidence

VB born, class of '14

Not full of confidence, we have till May, just feels good to start out well. I think any supporter would enjoy such a good start when you sprinkle in opportunities for silverware. We've played 2 a week for the first two weeks of the season. We've come out pretty well other than the community shield. It's a long season, by no means do I feel like we have it wrapped up. Just excited is all. Lots of improvement to go though, all 5 teams we've played have revealed weaknesses that we can work on.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

I said Unbearables on purpose 🤣, lots of Reds go by that title after becoming champions of Europe. Wasn't a typo 😂, would've been funny if it were though.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Stumbled across this while watching one of my favorite Liverpool vlog's. This was from Saturday against the Gunners:

Edit: Better shot

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Well done for Pool. They played well, but Arsenal's tactics were all wrong. Even the commentators basically only talked the whole game about how Emery needed to adjust. Terrible game plan

Gunners played well, blew some early chances to grab the bull by the horns. Auby should've finished that chip chance. Pepe looked great. I'm certainly glad to get a matchup out of the way with you guys early on, because that front 4 will be dangerous mid-season.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

That's the thing, it could've been dangerous today, but Laca was left on the bench and Cebellos was invisible in the formation. Can't understand why Laca didn't come on before 80'. But anyway, Liverpool looks great once again. Of all the other big 6 teams, I actually kind of like Liverpool. Such a pleasing style of football and Klopp is entertaining. Until Arsenal are good enough to challenge again, I'm glad it's Liverpool leading the way rather than Chelsea or United

The game plan was fine out of the gates, he just needed to make the subs after the 2nd goal and not at the 80 minute mark. Overall I think we played okay, there was a 15 minute window where we looked terrible but otherwise his plan wasn't proving to be too bad.

Pepe is going to be a monster. The finishing will come, but 7 completed dribbles againat that defense at Anfield is impressive.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Agreed, keeping it narrow, giving TAA & Robertson all the room in the world down the wings but not allowing the crosses to find anyone was working brilliantly. Two tugs of jerseys opened the game up and adjustments never came. The biggest thing against the stronger defensive sides is making the most of your chances. Auba should have done better, Pepe needs to settle in to his game but he looked great. I'm just encouraged that their best chances early all came from stupid Liverpool mistakes which are fixable. I really hope Alisson has a speedy recovery.

Harry Wilson with a rocket! Get those minutes in.

Doubt you'll ever see him in a Liverpool shirt again, Klopp doesn't really rate him...unless Milner retires after this year then he'd be sixth choice. He's better off moving on.

And really that will be fine too. I'm pulling for him to do well because for the time being he's contractually a Red, but more shots like this and we'll all be praising Michael Edwards for getting a mint for someone with no first team history for us.

I would love to make 25-30 off of Harry Wilson. Especially if Klopp doesn't rate him high.

Was funny to see Dom Solanke out there too, missed a golden opportunity to score.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Spurs and United both losing to sides that will probably end in the lower half of the table certainly takes the sting out of another bad trip to Anfield for Arsenal.

The Pepe signing looks like it's going to be pure class, just like Aubameyang a few years back. Not good enough to beat Liverpool away at this point, but you have to like the direction the club is on.

Yeah I'm pretty happy with how we're trending (particularly off the field). I will say that even with the two wins and a relatively improved performance at Anfield, we need to find a way to progress the ball better in the midfield. Willock and Guendouzi are doing fine for their age, but they're not moving the ball forward, and Ceballos is 1 for 2 so far in that respect.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Being a United fan lately reminds me of being a Hokie fan lately

Neutral to United and CP that last one even hurt me for United

"Can't argue with that logic" - Rick Sanchez

I should be used to it by now. This isn't Fergie's United. I've been following United about 15 years now and the first 9 or so years were really good to me so I try not to complain too much (and I know how much other fanbases hate United/their fans, haha). But it still stings, man.

And just to compound the misery Shaw pulled a hamy so itll be ashley young at left back for the next month or so. Yay

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

O captain, my captain

Came out of the NLD with a point. I am nearly done with Granit Xhaka, and I don't understand the decision to bring Mhki on instead of Ozil or even Willock there. But whatever.

Of course we also had the typical blind eyes turned to diving by Harry Kane...can't have England's golden boy booked, I suppose. It's really tiresome.

Mhki is beyond useless. It's crazy how bad he's become.

Pepes exciting at times but needs to make better decisions.

Guendozzi was amazing...best game for him so far?

It's gotta be up there, he was fired up in the 2nd half. Not the greatest in the 1st half but that's forgiven. The entire midfield upped their game in the 2nd half actually.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

It was a good match though. Wanted 3 points but glad we could battle back and get the draw. Really great NLD for a neutral though I'm sure.

I agree, I tend to defend Xhaka but that one broke my patience. I like what he offers for switching the field quickly but it doesn't make up for those mistakes anymore.

And yeah, Mkhi was a wasted sub. And Pepe needs to get his shooting boots on cause he's about an inch away from being one of the most dangerous players in the league. LOVED Guendouzi and Ceballos in the 2nd half... we need more of that.

And if a guy goes down and you stop play but don't call the foul, that's simulation and should be a card. It happened twice and no cards. But whatever, at least he didn't buy the dives.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Dele alli is an infuriating player to watch. Hes such a prick

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

glad to see the anti-arsenal conspiracy theory lives on despite xhaka only getting booked in stoppage time

lol... Okay. For the record I think Xhaka should have had a yellow for the bone head penalty he gifted you, but that's not what we were talking about.

Relax my dude. Not everything is an attack. I thought the game was great and everyone got what they deserved from it.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Yeah I'm not sure why the foul in the box wasn't a yellow but it was a tight game. Dunno if either team would feel great after today this seemed to be the best arsenal could be and they managed to salvage a draw after a poor second half by Spurs who in their own way we're weird all game. Someone needs to teach son how to pass instead of aimlessly run at people with the ball till he gets dispossessed

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Vardy and the Foxes are having a party to start the season.!

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

LC is definitely a pleasant surprise in the top 3 of unbeaten teams. Great start to the season. So much parity thus far, love it!

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Vardy single handedly bailed my fantasy team out when Sterling shit the bed and that chip was filthy

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Not throwing shad AT ALL

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Well played sir, I made the edit. Darn cell phone keyboards...

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Great article that doesn't have any LFC bias, just a commonsense approach to fandom, and how social media/current culture has devolved things. I feel Ross does a great job at pointing out the 'shite' that social media/ulterior motivated journalism, adds to the footy community; he also does a great job at showing how one can sort through all of the static to get to the heart of true fandom through social media and other mediums.

S/N: Lo Celso out until late October.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Bernard Diomede

For some of my Red supporters on the site (and anyone else who wants to watch), thought it was interesting to hear the history of what a Scouser is, and why they don't consider themselves to be English. I can't get to this city soon enough, really hoping my plans to visit Anfield for my 40th birthday work out (2 year goal)

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

So while many of us were probably watching and/or drinking away VT football...Norwich went ahead and beat City. Kind of a thing that happened there.

TEEEEMMMUUUUUUU

Pukki, get in Lad! Makes that win at the beginning of the campaign look that much better. #UpTheReds #GetEmCanaries

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Has anyone watched the Leeds show on Amazon? I can't get enough of the soccer shows..All or Nothing Man City, Sunderland show on Netflix, Juventus on Netflix, Boca Juniors on Netflix.

I hope amazon does an All or Nothing for a European team every season

I'm not even a Man United fan and The Class of 92 documentary (not the tv show) was incredible.

Tickled to death United won today. It's the little things nowadays folks. When you're a Tampa Bay Bucs fan, a United fan, and a Hokies fan sports can be a sore spot. Even missing Pogba, Shaw, Lingard, and Martial we didn't drop points. Gotta be pleased.

I have no idea why my username is VT_Warthog.

Arkansas blew a 24-0 lead in the Belk Bowl.

Honestly I was stunned we pulled it off missing pogba but I liked what mctominay did his passing was good as well problem is matic looked slow and our right midfield is an issue though

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Seriously...done with Unai just like that.

Horror show, unbelievable. Watford dropped points as far as I am concerned.

Same old Sokratis, and Luiz had been trash

If you want level-headed opinions, don't go on a message board or sports forums

And Guendouzi really has to calm himself. I like the captain-esque behavior of throwing a shove at a dude in defense of Pepe but he flashed the score at the fans when he was subbed (which aged horribly after they scored again) and had the worst move I've ever seen him make trying to play from the back straight into multiple Watford players and it turned into multiple shots on Leno. Blah.

Then the frustration with Ozil...an absolute dime of a pass to create a goal after not even playing until today. If we got the full potential out of that guy on a consistent basis it would open so many doors...

Yeah the trolling backfired horribly was funny as hell from an outsider.

The ozil thing is thats what weve been saying forever about him and how long before we all accept it isnt what he wants to do doing the say firmino style dirty work isnt his MO

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I don't think Emery is capable of getting the full potential out of any of our players, at this point. Square pegs in round holes all over the pitch when we should have the ability to make some square holes by this point. The likes of Mustafi, Luiz, Sokratis, Xhaka, etc. may not be the best players in the world, but at this point the amount of errors leading to goals HAS to be systemic.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

definitely systemic. playing a flat midfield three with ozil as a 10 tucked in behind aubmeyang and pepe doesn't seem like a bad idea. But for me, one of those three has to be torreira if you're going to pull it off. Guendouzi and Xhaka just aren't as positionally sound, and what they have in intensity they lack in composure and decision making.

If you want to play out of the back, why take off the most technically sound midfielder at 60' (Ceballos). Willock and Nelson are good players, but if Sokratis and Xhaka are getting rattled by the high press from the insistence on playing short goal kicks, how can you expect two young players to excel.

Can't wait to at least get Bellerin, Holding, and Tierney in the lineup, but that won't fix everything. Never should have let Ramsey leave.

edit: just compare Arsenal midfield and defense vs Watford and Norwich City against Manchester City

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

I apologize in advance b.c I'm angry, but if any of you are in nova, please never let your kids play for vsa. Just watched an hour of their girls playing mma in what was supposed to be a soccer game. It was nothing more than kick the ball and punch the opponent. We've been playing and beating them for years, but I'm so tired of the nonsense. If you have an option, opt for Alexandria, they're a joy to watch and know what they're doing. Vsa is for those with no talent and who try to make up for it by being physical.

Hokie fan | W&M grad

That sounds like my high school soccer team before a new coach introduced culture to the program. We went to fights and maybe a game would break out.

Marshall University student.
Virginia Tech fanatic.

Lol, that sums it up perfectly. That should be there motto.

Hokie fan | W&M grad

Fucking James Maddison, again.

I mean how you spend your bye week is your business, but I might've kept that one quiet.

Well played. I actually laughed out loud.

Watford is uh... not good.

I have no idea why my username is VT_Warthog.

Arkansas blew a 24-0 lead in the Belk Bowl.

That's the same team that drew (and could've won) against the Gunners. Watford is bad, but City is insane, credit where credit is due.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Thought we'd see a new EPL record after that 5-0 start....schoolboy defending

How many games until Deeney snaps?

I guess the boys at City got a little tired of hearing about their Norwich loss...yikes.

Rodri was quoted last week "were going to murder our next opponent" he wasn't kidding

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

Literally

Time to drop Sterling from fantasy fraudiola is at it again killing me when I needed a big game from him

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

At least he didn't get the 3 minute cameo

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

True thats what he's famous for doing

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Don't look now but Leicester is top 4.

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

Done with Emery.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

I will not make kneejerk statements about the Arsenal manager. I will not make kneejerk statements about the Arsenal manager. I will not...

Glad Pepe finally opened his account.

Xhaka, Sokratis, and Luiz out. Of a cannon if you're Xhaka. Torreira, Chambers, and Holding in. Torreira is a true defensive midfielder, but even with the donkeys at the back needing help he's on the bench. I just don't get it.

edit: I am dying. You can't make this stuff up. 3-2!

Make sure Mustafi goes with Sokratis and Luiz. Xhaka can only be used as sub

If you want level-headed opinions, don't go on a message board or sports forums

It took 2 moments of last second pure individual brilliance to beat Aston Villa... at home. I think we gave up 4-5 SOG in the first 10 minutes. Emery is not setting this team up to succeed. We can blame individual players until we have none left (let's not forget that Torreira looked pretty bad at the end of last season too). Luiz was error prone before but his rate at Arsenal so far dwarfs anything he's ever done in the past.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Yeah, I just try and not evaluate the manager on a match by match basis. Even though Watford and Villa were basically terrible matches for us given that they are looking like they're headed for the relegation scrap.

I think he's 100% gone if we are back in UEL next year, and should be. They'll probably be able to tell before the end of the season what the trajectory is looking like. He's definitely been backed. Not just in transfer spending...I'd imagine there are clubs that would have forced him to play Ozil because of the enormous wage, etc.

Another year in Europa would be dire times for the club financially and on the pitch as well. Aubameyang would be in the last year of his deal with no UCL football and would be almost certain to move on.

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Cheering for United is as exhausting as cheering for VT nowadays. Sports suck man.

I have no idea why my username is VT_Warthog.

Arkansas blew a 24-0 lead in the Belk Bowl.

Glad I wasn't able to watch the game it's a fucking joke lingards our starting striker now and matic is still in the midfield ole looks lost but Woodward is the source

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Man the Blues played us tough, that was about as nervy of a game as I've watched in awhile. The boys looked uninspired and gassed at times. Kudos to Chelsea.

For me, starting 6-0-0 with a backup, off the scrap heap, keeper like Adrian is an amazing feat. The guy isn't the best at distribution, but he is an effective shot stopper (See Tammy opportunity). Kudos to Jurgie keeping the boys focused after a tough Napoli draw. We didn't look the best today but we got the job done. Hopefully we can rotate in the coming days with the Blades and MK on the horizon, and Leicester lurking (will require a strong side).

5 points clear after 6, I'll take it.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Harvey Elliott looked great! The pace, the vision, the touch, all ahead of his time (16 yrs old). The only thing I could see that could use improvement is his finishing, those two cross bar clangers should've been netted. Arsenal will be a tough matchup, but I like our chances at home. What the hell happened with ManUre? Yikes! They pulled it out, but man, Ole might not make it through the season with a clunker like that.

Onto the blades we go, should be a tough matchup.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Turned out to be a tough matchup, Sheffield will be a tough out for most teams this season. Onto the next one.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

So after being told Martial and pogba would both be back for the arsenal game monday now Pogba is looking a big doubt and martial is still hurt and theyre saying hes still a week or two away and rashford is still a while out so I'll watch but this should be easy pickings for arsenal monday night without those guys we are complete shit.

De gea
AWB Lindelof Maguire Young

Matic Mctominay

Lingard Mata James

Greenwood

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

The events of the last week sure have put a spotlight on how the big clubs in the EPL care about League Cup these days.

I think the FA Cup remains prestigious...but I dunno about this one. It's not even as fun to hear about Spurs losing to Colchester because they were probably out there walking it from the beginning.

the best part about it is that Son, Eriksen, Lucas, Lamela, Alli all played. Outside of Kane, you wouldn't have picked another spurs attacker if you were really really trying to win. So Poch decided in the match to go for it and to win, but maybe the players didn't. It was a weird in between squad with some kids but mostly tried-and-true vets, unlike Arsenal where the only vets that really played were ones who aren't first choice anymore (Mustafi) and ones who were coming back from injury.

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Looks highly likely at this point that Leicester is going to challenge Spurs, United, Arsenal, and Chelsea in the table this year. I think City will get enough separation as the season goes on but the next 4 need to watch out.

It's our time again!

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

To finish third? Not sure the foxes have ever done that before

Well....ok. I think I'm there on Emery now. Saved by Auba's quality and Utd players mistakenly stopping with the flag going up. They couldn't hit the broad side of a barn on a set piece.

I'm ready now, lads:

(sadly I'm only 80% kidding at this point)

Once again he sets up the team to constantly absorb pressure in a "big" game. Under no circumstances should Xhaka, Guendo, and Torreira all be starting together.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

My heart can't handle this...

Watched the game late, just finished it, Milner with balls of steel. I need the international break after this one.

Still top of the league!

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Relax! It's only October...but seriously, I have no idea how we're doing it but will obviously take it.

I know KH, I shouldn't let a potential draw get to me that bad, but man the time during that VAR check and Milner actually scoring was FOREVER long

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Foxes should have had a draw against Liver.

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

Completely agree, the penalty was soft, I'd be the first to say that, but I'll take the 3 points that's for sure, especially after MC's banana peel today.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

8 points ahead after 8 games? Never in my wildest dreams...hard to not get excited at this stage

Exciting for sure but after being 9 points clear in December last year, I'm hoping the boys don't get too comfortable.

In Klopp we trust

Not even letting myself think about winning it all! Especially in October, great start, but a long way to go

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Sound strategy...wish I had that kind of discipline

It's tough man, I'm dreading the idea of having a nervy heart from October to May. I just feel like Stones coming back will sure up that backline for MC, and YOU ALREADY KNOW ManUre is going to fight hard against us with their backs up against the wall. I think if we go into January playing strong I'll be a little closer to where you're at right now.

Edit:

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

And United are losing to Newcastle and Fred is trying to send the ball out of the stratosphere this team sucks and the manager looks lost

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

As a Chelsea fan, this is the ml ost exciting season I have watched in a really long time. Really happy with the kids and the way they are playing. Just need to fine a way to stop leaking goals.

Can't complain all that much about being 3rd in the table, although that's at least partially because our competition is also very bad.

But once again we grind out a nervy win without many true chances, a function of a disjointed midfield, while playing the Xhaka-Guendouzi pivot while Torreira sits on the bench and Ozil is nowhere to be seen despite one of our biggest deficiencies (creating chances).

On the bright side, Chambers has been great recently and with the return of Bellerin and Tierney we might actually have a halfway decent defense after the break.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

OT: WHAT a weekend for sports for me, Liverpool eek out a win against LC, my Hokies beat Miami, Yankees go up 2-0, Manchester United lose and are 2 points above relegation, Everton's IN the relegation zone, and most importantly Man City lose. The only smudge on this weekend is my guy Danny Dimes falling short for the first time for my Giants. I'm on cloud 9 this Monday morning.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

What a difference 2 weeks makes, LFC draw at United, Giants lost two straight, Hokies are still doing decent, but my Yanks ran out of injury magic.

Kudos to ManU showing up big time. I drank a little bit of the Kool Aid throughout the week, and thought we'd run over them. Can't take a Derby for granted, it brings the best out of a squad. Hate losing 2 points, hate losing the record of 17 straight, hate not equaling both 18 straight, and 9 to start the season. Wanna get this bitter feeling away from me hopefully with a win at Genk.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

It shows how much Liverpool misses a guy like Salah. That's the difference between Liverpool and City.

Correy

Ozil is going to outlast Unai Emery. I would have never believed it a year ago. I hope he's staying fit, I am sure Ljungberg will want to play him.

I don't even know what the philosophy at Arsenal is anymore. There will be a better starting XI on Thursday night in the Europa League because there's a possibility that Bellerin, Tierney, Torreira, Ozil, Lacazette, and Ceballos could start. That's 6 quality players that are either not playing in the PL at all or are subs. Holding is probably close as well. The PL XI is a joke right now.

I can't understand why Tierney and Holding haven't made their way onto the field in league games. I know Emery said Kolasinac hasn't done anything to lose his starting job. I would like to see these guys get in the team. not sure Bellerin is ready. I would like to see a back 4 of Tierney, Luiz, Holding, Chambers, with Guendouzi, Torreira in front of them and an attack with Ceballos, Ozil, Auba and Pepe. Maybe sub out Ozil for Martenelli or Saka.

Correy

I mean I know its Southampton but hot damn I feel smart for captaining jamie vardy in fpl

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

Shows how great Van Dijk is, eh? Holy smokes!

Havin a party!!

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

That was a beating. how ,many did Vardy get tonight?

Correy

3

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

Didn't even have to captain him this weekend and still crushed it with him and maddison in my fpl team

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

! why u no join Hokies league??????

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

wife is a brummie and i was talked into going to a bham city game in august, they seem to like it over there.

big win for celtic over lazio. not terribly invested in them, but like their politics.

I been here since day 0.

Sorry you had to go to St Andrews instead of the best stadium in Birmingham, Villa Park :o) Seems they've tightened security since that Birmingham City ran onto the pitch and punched Jack Grealish in the head.

Difficult to get to. Villa Park is tucked away right next to the real spaghetti junction (the one in Springfield has nothing on Birmingham's totally easy to use roundabouts), whereas St. Andrews is tucked right away nicely within walking distance from Green Ln and Coventry Rd.

I've been informed that Aston Villa's fanbase is akin to Buffy and Chadwick up there in Naziville.

Either way, I'm a Celtic guy. Really love their fanbase.

I been here since day 0.

I've been there once; was able to get a bus up from the Bull Ring, had to get a cab back. It's beautiful, though. Heard good things about St Andrews, just felt obligated to give you some stick as a Villa fan. I'm afraid I am completely missing the Buffy and Chadwick reference...is the implication they are the snooty, LOLUVA types? As far as I've been able to gather, it seems the consensus is there IS no snooty part of Birmingham. It's like saying someone's from the poor part of Park Avenue, it's all relative.

Anything associated with the Aston side of town is a bit more upper class. You've also got Star City out that way also.

The Aston fans are very much the lone pocket of wealth in a working class city (for anyone not familiar with the city, I like to refer to it as Pittsburgh, but with a lot of Pakistanis). Sparkbrook, out by the big central mosque is a more affluent area also.

I forgot how close City is to Alum Rock Rd also.

In-laws live out in Stechford, not too far from the airport, that is very much working class.

SIL lives out in Leeds and her husband is a Huddersfield Town fan, he likened that fandom to getting your fingernails ripped out every season. His cousin has a bit of an interest in CFB and had actually heard about our entrance; I have converted him into a Hokie and he will text me after every game to talk about it.

I been here since day 0.

Papa deserved his brace, though. VAR official needs to get his eyes checked.

Didn't see highlights until just now. Holy cow, that is some bad referring. Chambers gets fouled by Kouyate and they call the foul on Chambers? Between Emery, Xhaka, and VAR it made some delicious banter watch on AFTV this morning, but man Arsenal got screwed there.

What's the story on Granit? I haven't been able to find a video of him telling the fans to "F*** off."

AFTV is off the rails because of it too...

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

it was VERY clear multiple times on the tv broadcast.

basically the fans see Xhaka as a representative problem of their issues with Emery's managing. He is asking Xhaka to fill a role best suited to someone like Lucas Torreira, and maybe it makes sense to make-do with what you have, but it doesn't make sense to play Xhaka when you actually have Lucas Torreira. currently feels like everyone watching the games realizes that Torreira/Guendouzi/Ceballos would be the best midfield three in a 4-3-3, with Saka, Willock, and Nelson being options off the bench or to change formation to 4-2-3-1 (like when Saka was introduced for Xhaka).

all that to say that Xhaka has been put in a tough spot by Emery and has become something of a lightning rod for criticism. He let it get to him -- ripped off the captain's armband and threw it on the ground, cupped his ear to the boos, swore at the fans multiple times.

Highly recommend the "Granit Xhaka" portion of this article: https://arseblog.com/2019/10/arsenal-2-2-crystal-palace-xhaka-explodes-v...

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Interesting, didn't know this was going on in house, I usually watch Troopz videos because they are pretty comical. Ian Wright was pretty upset too. Unai's decisions have been a little perplexing, but granted that's from an outsider looking in. Hopefully it all works out for you guys, cause that fan base is super passionate about their club.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

there's just been a ton of mind boggling decisions by Emery as a manager that seem to have little payoff on the pitch

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

I usually watch Troopz videos / Hopefully it all works out for you guys, cause that fan base is super passionate about their club

That's why even as a Liverpool fan, I gravitate towards watching AFTV over Redmen TV. Troopz (biased show) and DT (mostly through the blud bruvvas seriers) are comical. Moh is pretty level headed and probably deserve a show over Claude and Ty, who are downright unwatchable.

A lot of the grief seems to come similarly to when Liverpool fans were calling for Hendo to get dropped. Xhaka is redundant to the other mids and is an easy target because of his history of red cards and other blunders. The funny part is that yesterday, it seemed like he had a good game, but is the one to get substituted. I think the tipping point was that he didn't jog off then decided to double down and go all hulkamania on his way out.

The funny part is that yesterday, it seemed like he had a good game, but is the one to get substituted.

i didn't think so. he got absolutely roasted on the first (edit: second) palace goal, and was pretty anonymous in midfield. guendouzi and ceballos did most of the heavy lifting in advancing the ball forward, and without the ball it seemed like arsenal settled into a 442 with Pepe dropping back on the right flank to help try to cover for him.

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

A lot of your frustration mirrors my frustration with having Hendo AND Gini in our midfield. I hope the Genk game shows Klopp that having some forward push, in addition to possession in the midfield, would prove useful. Hoping Keita and Ox get a little more play in the coming games. Especially for that City game.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

That's fair. I've only seen the highlights and seen he got an assist on the first goal. I'm assuming you mean the 2nd goal, it looks like he could have done better, but Luiz could have tracked that back post run better too. But also credit to Ayew, because that could have been just headed straight at the goalie any other day of the week (oh never mind, that's just liverpool against back up keepers /s.).

That's why even as a Liverpool fan, I gravitate towards watching AFTV over Redmen TV

I actually gravitate to Redmen TV, because they are more level-headed. As a "US LFC" fan I need that level headed approach. If I were a Gunner supporter, AFTV would have me tightly wound every single week. Redmen TV are pretty balanced, and they give respect to every club for the most part. They are the only reason that I've been able to stay level-headed despite this great start. They've been adamant about reminding the viewer, that it's only October.

Watching AFTV is an opportunity for me to laugh, and get a feel for what football passion looks like overseas, and I like to peer into that window every now and then.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

The whole thing was a disaster and the toxicity will continue to hurt the club. Everyone was wrong. All of them.

The fans should not have been sarcastically cheering for Xhaka to come off, nor should he have been booed. The manager selects the lineup. If you're a fan and you want accountability it belongs to Unai Emery. The players play when they are told. This manager has managed to lose me in record time. I've never been a quick hook guy for coaches at VT, Arsenal, etc. But this is a total mess.

Xhaka was way out of line in response to it. The captain needs to sprint off the pitch when he is subbed out. He needs to take the abuse from the crowd (that shouldn't have happened) on the chin and not react. He needs to not throw the armband at Aubameyang, pull off his shirt, and leave the pitch into the tunnel.

Class is permanent. That's what we say at Arsenal Football Club. Whatever the hell happened yesterday wasn't that.

Stockley this is about the most balanced response I've seen to this incident on the internet over the last 24 hours (not shade to any of the gunners on this site, speaking more so from the Twittersphere, etc).

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Arsenal's fan base is probably as toxic as any out there. I'm with Stockley on this one too... there's no place for anything that happened in that game. Emery seems like he's actively trying to tank his future with Arsenal his decisions are so baffling. Xhaka's reaction is merely a symptom, not the cause. I guarantee you he's not the only player in the squad near the tipping point. VAR is a farce and Martin Atkinson is having a record-breaking year as far as errors go.

Just too much for me. Only bright side is that I had 3 Leicester players in my fantasy lineup this week.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

From a Man U fan this whole thing has been blown up because all parties have been losing it. The players deserve some blame for the way this has unfolded and the way the rift in the locker room appears to be. AFTV is silly beyond silly they feed on the teams struggles and are consitently over blowing everything for the channel hits. And the fans shouldn't have booed xhaka but he let the moment take over and did things that weren't too bright. All said nobody is guilt free in this situation the issue is nobody seems to want to admit they messed up.

TLDR too many big egos and a toxic fan base do not end well.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

It's gotten to the point where neutral fans on reddit threads say they feel deprived of AFTV rants when Arsenal wins. I think the really popular rant videos (the really loud and angry ones have millions of views) are the reason Arsenal made Robbie change the name...it was Arsenal Fan TV at first until a cease and desist letter came down, apparently. Week after week it was a bad look for the club.

The treatment of Wenger at the end was really over the top. Was it obvious that he needed to retire? Yeah, probably...but they treated him like a dog after all of the glory he brought to the club.

It really reminded me of the situation with Beamer. I think it became obvious that coach needed to retire, but I can't imagine going on a popular Youtube channel and yelling, ranting, and cussing about Frank like that.

Theyre such a negative media its sad. The fan base is probably mostly level headed but there are enough babbling idiots making a riot just get their opinion out there. AFTV is stupid but every fan base has the fan channels that have skip bayless like ranting and raving just for hits. Hell there is one channel on the man u side of things that pretty much only drops videos when the team loses and is silent when they win its sad some people feel the need to try and get people to pity them so bad they make everything seem far worse than it really is.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Liverpool, FAM! Mentality Giants! (other than when their at Trafford...) 😂

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Oh FFS...Lovren proved what a disaster he is yesterday. Put in Gomez.

That's what I'm hoping for honestly. I'm so surprised that Gomez hasn't gotten more play over the last couple of weeks. Either he isn't performing well during training, or is simply playing catch up on the fitness side of things.

That CB pairing at the beginning of last season was impenetrable. After that crap goal that we gave up to Genk because of Lovren overthinking things, and seeing Son outpace Dejan, I just don't trust him in big games, and with a tough Villa side, and the looming MC match, that is one area that needs to be sured up.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Jose Mourinho apparently interested in the Arsenal job. I didn't know it was open, but I can't imagine a worse fit.

mourinho has talked himself up for like 3-5 different jobs that currently have coaches

There's no way he's serious. Probably just the generic complimentary attitude you get from pundits. Or he's just taking the piss because he and Wenger hated each other.

Even if you took away all of the potential for personality conflicts and drama in general that inevitably come with Mou...there's no way Arsenal could or would ever meet his appetite for transfers. People were absolutely floored this summer when the club spent more than ~45 million (pick your currency).

I think Man Utd backed him to the level of like 300 million pounds in 3 years? It still went to hell and Mou blamed a lack of support. He wouldn't even get half of that at Arsenal and he knows it.

What a match...

Heart is still pounding, it meant something to the kids, and you could see that!

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

I actually love the result. No, I'm not kidding. I want Unai Emery fired as soon as possible and it's only fitting that we lose after we sub off the best player on the field after his million year hiatus. Glorious. Emery showing his genius over and over and over again.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

I agree and I can't wait for Martinelli to...not play on Saturday. He is the top scoring teenager in the top 5 European leagues. And he's a Carabao Cup player or a bench player in the league.

HA! Reminded me of the UEFA Cup final where we beat Alaves 5-4....this seems appropriate

That was something alright. I was convinced Milly was try to give it away so we could stop playing in this cup, but Unai gonna do what Unai gonna do.

Edit. Also, I could have sworn I bet the over on the three matches today and looked at my account and apparently I either chickened out or it didn't go through.

This whole play like shyte and win at the end narrative really isn't all that fun, but I'll take it.

The game wasn't on here in Utah, so I came home to watch it only to see 4 other EPL games on my DVR. 😣; But man, NBC Sports Gold had a 18 minute YT recap and my heart was pounding even though I knew the result. We better come ready for City next week or we don't have a chance. I'll take the 3 points though.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

I hate how the nbc sports gold replays don't become available till that night at 10pm like wtf why cant I watch the replay after it's done and not have to wait the rest of the day before the replay is live

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

It's contractual, which means non-affiliated providers cant show highlights until the next day (UK time)

Arsenal and VT on the same day is a real swift kick in the ass sometimes. Pain and disappointment from 11 am to almost 7pm today. Both games were basically bottle jobs. It just doesn't get worse.

No idea about the point of the subs and I just need the dummies book for Emery's tactics at this point. Playing Torreira high with Ozil sitting deep is way too big brain for me. I'm surprised we aren't winning because the other team is simply shocked into submission by what they see.

This begs the question: what's the difference between Arsenal and VT fans? When you find out, let us all know.

You complete me. After today, I can't watch Arsenal anymore until they fire Emery. Watching my Gunners is now like passing kidney stones or listening to people shit their guts out. I have no idea what "strategy" he's trying to employ but we just came through what should be the easy part of our schedule and have gotten 2 points in the last nine matches. FML. There's too much talent on this team to get outshot by Wolves 25-10.

If they can him, they need to do it now. December/Holiday fixtures are a bear with City, Chelsea and United all in that time.

Correy

Paging all EPL fans, especially Kop/Esh:

What do you guys think about Sunday's matchup at Anfield? I'm nervous as crap! Feel like it'll be the hardest 90 minutes on my heart and stress levels that I've felt in years! At this point I'd take a draw, I respect City and the talent they have, thus the reason my expectations are so mild.

Sunday can't get here soon enough.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Neither team is firing on all cylinders I expect a rather disappointing affair. I don't buy the narrative that if the Reds win the title is ours, but we can't afford to lose it. I think it'll be a draw as Citeh may not want to expose their rather shaky defense too much. They won't park the bus but they won't be as aggressive as usual. We haven't exactly been playing well, our finishing has been poor lately...1-1 for me.

I'm more concerned about the Wake game, to be honest.

Ederson is out....were sooo fucked. Bravo is not an adequate backup and without laporte or stones or zinny or our makeshift cb in rodri....Yikes

I think this will be a boring ass game, pep is gonna play for the draw and klopp will be happy to oblige with a 6 point lead, but if klopp goes for the throat it could be an ugly day. We do not play well at Anfield.

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

I agree, I think it's going to be a lot less "monumental" of a match, than the prognosticators are leading us to believe.

I think it's going to come down to the midfield play. If Klopp puts out a Fab, Gini, Ox midfield, then it's obvious he's going for the throat, if he puts out a Gini, Fab, Hendo midfield, then I think he's playing for the draw with hopes of stealing one.

I will admit, I'd be disappointed if we don't go for the throat. I don't think we'll see a more compromised Man City side all season, he has to see this as an opportunity to kick the door open.

Then again, Klopp's respect for Pep, will prevent him from doing so. One can dream.

Lastly, I doubt Ederson is out, I think it's all mind games, it was a muscle tweak after the UCL match, and then a day and a half later it's something more major. I don't mean this to be shade, but I think Pep is all about mind games, and keeping the opponent on their toes in EVERY way possible. I'm sure Ederson and Silva will be on the pitch Sunday.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Fabinho might play CB next to Virg coz Lovren is pants, the lineups in this game could literally be head scratching but necessary, so it's intriguing in that regard for me.

I'd be highly surprised if Fab plays CB. I think Klopp is more likely to go with Lov, as much as we hate it, and as fearful as we are about that. I'd prefer Gomez, since he has more pace, but his confidence seems low, and he hasn't gotten the reps he needs to replicate what he did last fall. Really wish we had Joel for this matchup, think that would really put us over the top, at least for this matchup with all the injuries City has. I think having Lov on the backline, really puts us in danger of conceding. Sergio is notorious for putting one past us.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

The only PL ground that Aguero hasn't scored at is Anfield-how about that!

KH with the "stats of hope"

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Foxes about to go to 2nd! Vardy is having another record breaking season.

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

Really really don't get why people think Rodgers would leave Leicester for arsenal I think he would be crazy he has something special at Leicester and I think he should try and ride it out and push to hold onto some of the younger guys

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I'm in Blacksburg for the great victory over Wake and missed the Arsenal match. Looks like there was nothing to see except for Emery out. I'm done. 9 points out in November is a travesty. Emery out.

There was plenty to see, Foxes domination.

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

Only the Brits could fuck VAR up so bad they've made a mess of a good thing

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Wow....this season is going to take a toll on my heart. May seems so far away!!! This is FAR from over, and I hate it! Glad my Reds won, but I REFUSE to believe the title is ours. This 3 points is a hell of a step on the right direction though. Up the Reds.

S/N: It was a handball (because I know this debate will start)

S/N2:. Love the crowd telling Fab to pull the trigger, that early goal was what my heart needed to make it through this game, I was scares as crap before the match:

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Fucking BRILLIANT! Silva handball first so great no call on the VAR. Over the (blue) moon today. Up the Reds!

It certainly was, I promised myself the UCL long sleeve home shirt, if we beat Man City, seeing as this is the last year with NB, and since it has the new '6' patch on the sleeve. I just completed the order, and of course it had to have Origi on the back, after "The 4-0."

I really don't know how I'm going to contain my excitement about this season. To have 34 points out of a possible 36, is just insane! But the ghosts of Liverpool past keeps me grounded. Chelsea looks great, and I'm super thankful to have beaten them away already. The foxes look tough too! I'm thankful we'll be done with them for the season by the end of December, because they are going to be a tough matchup for everyone.

If we get through December injury free, I'm really going to have a hard time containing myself from Jan-May. The Unbearables are certainly back!

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Pochettino is out at Tottenham, I'm sorry but what?

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Kind of surprising but they've only won 3 away games this calendar year and there's a general feeling of stagnation around the club. Levy is as much to blame for this as Poch, IMO.

I'm shocked....
Feel terrible for Poch, especially as far as he took the team last year, just shocked...
Arsenal and ManU will be excited though LOL

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

long term? yes. I think he's the reason players like Lo Celso wanted to come. But their recruitment has been way down -- mostly focused on retaining players who could (should?) play at bigger clubs -- Kane, Eriksen, Son, etc. I think Eriksen is as good as gone in January.

short term? I don't want to see this actually turn into a run of good form.

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

I've been saying it for ages they should have delayed the new stadium a few years it killed their momentum and they were so much better at the old WHL. I'm very interested to see where he winds up now gotta imagine Bayern are all ears here

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I think that's the thing though GGC, he's been doing abundantly well with poor recruitment. He's gotten the most bang out of your buck than most managers. Don't you think?

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Certainly more than some other managers roaming around North London.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

who ever would have believed after the emirates move that arsenal recruitment would be better than the managing/coaching?

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Nobody would be surprised if Emery doesn't see out 2019 in North London, either.

I don't think too many arsenal supporters would be that upset about it, but it would definitely be a departure from what the ownership and board have been saying.

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

sure -- Levy threw him and the staff under the bus with the statement.

Chairman, Daniel Levy, said: "We were extremely reluctant to make this change and it is not a decision the Board has taken lightly, nor in haste.

"Regrettably domestic results at the end of last season and beginning of this season have been extremely disappointing.

BUT -- they've had an absolutely horrible 2019 in the league. and the run to the UCL final didn't paper over the fact that (a) they haven't actually won anything and (b) they were probably more fortunate than anything else to even be there (looking at nando's hand/hip goal)

the immediate chatter is going to turn to mourinho in that role. if he didn't think the united board supported him in the transfer market, he'll have another thing coming if he winds up at Spuds.

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Its the resource curse. Funny money flowed in through the Bale sale to Real Madrid. They purchased so many players it made Poch look better than he is. With that said, I do think he is a top quality manager, but notches below Pep and the German. Poch doesn't have the stones to be Pep or the German. Hope he finds them. RM has its own chairman who will cause a small manager difficulties. Likely every FC he wants to go to will have similar.

Levy is the real villian here. He could have been modestly active in the last few windows and Tottenham would be in the same convo as MC, LIV. Now they become the laughingstock. (unless they turf Levy)

The German....lol; reminds me of when people from Ohio say "that other school" or the "school up north" when referring to Michigan lol.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

With that said, I do think he is a top quality manager, but notches below Pep and the German.

Notches below seems strong to me. Being a great manager in European football is much more difficult to assess than in college football, etc. Pep is obviously an innovater and one of the best of all time, and I believe Klopp is working his way into that conversation comfortably as well, but those two managers also have the two best dressing rooms in England, and two of the best in Europe. Spurs roster is still leagues below them in quality and depth, and Poch made the CL final without being allowed to make any signings last season. Unbelievable in the current era of spending and depth building. It was amazing he was competitive at all. I mean Moussa Sissoko became a mainstay in midfield for Spurs last year, like I don't know if people realize how baffling that is in context. Football is a sport where the quality of your team sheet and depth can make a lot of bad managers look good, great managers look bad, and it makes differentiating between top managers very difficult, especially when the degrees of roster variance tighten up. It's impossible to know how good Poch would be doing with City's midfield depth or Liverpool's attack.

That isn't an attempt to downplay either coach tactically, nobody needs to explain Pep's career to me, he's been a pain in my ass since the late aughts and still manages to piss me off to this day, Klopp's high press and ball winning defense has been one of the biggest innovations/trends of the 2010's. I just think it's difficult to judge Poch against those two given the hands they have been playing with. Zidane is another interesting case for this kind of discussion. He won three CL's in a row, but it can be difficult to parse out how much Zidane's tactical flexibility and in-game adjustments were critical to our success (they were) against how incredible that squad, and particularly Ronaldo, was in that CL run (also incredible). Both are true but it's difficult to know if the same end results wouldn't have still happened with another manger, much like it did in 14 with Ancelotti.

Then there are complicating factors to consider when judging managers based on could this coach turn a low or mid table team into a contender? Some coaches are just built to only coach elite teams, and their style of play likely wouldn't work without having a top 5 squad in the world. Guys like Poch, Klopp, and Mourinho to me have proven they can be much more successful with less talent than a Guardiola, who has managed peak-golden generation Barca, Bayern, and endless money Man City... He has never proven, and will likely never prove he could he even be successful with a top 30ish team in Europe. He also doesn't/shouldn't have to, but it's just another complicating factor that can be brought into this discussion.

Then what Claudio Ranieri did with Leicester City a few years ago was truly miraculous, same with Rafa Benitez winning the Champions League with Ryan Babel leading the line.

Of course neither are as good as Pep, but you can achieve amazing things with an "average" squad.

Cmon Kop, surely you know Babel has never won a CL. Kuyt was the goal scorer in the '07 final loss.

I'm gonna cry uncle then probably return the favor, cuz its soccer and I'm fervent if underwatched this season. I like the two minutes before goal build up. Watching a full game, meh just don't have the time unless its a favorite player.

I think if P&K are on top rung of managers, there is an empty rung beneath them and then there is Poch on the third rung. With that said I am pretty highly critical of his performance recently. I do think he has sunk into some sort of depression with the realization that Levy would never help him get over the hump. And so I think alot has to go into allocating recent performance to his fundamental coaching skill. But why did Kane start in CL final? He had a horse he had relied upon. Why not give him a shot first, then bring in Kane if required / desired? Letting go of their holding forward in the transfer window was a mistake. Kane is better at holding than most think but not as good as the guy exiting. Fix the midfield and yes, fine let him go. Tottenham's midfield may be ok by EPL standards but I thought they were thoroughly whipped by Ajax. Fundamentally I want in midfielders 1) team orientation - playing the midfield as a group / connecting with the players they are supporting 2) technical excellence - hard work skills dribbling, trapping, passing 3) brilliance of any kind. Tottenham's midfield IMHO is encouraged to play as 1), 2) with some 3) thrown in, but i think several of their players think they are 3). Poch got himself in a situation where reminding them of their "mediocrity at the highest levels" might have gotten him a bunch of turnover. IMHO Poch did a good job of ensuring they were 1) and 2) with some wanderlust for goals encouraged. But its the EPL, you have ManCity who is all 3) & 2) not too sure of the 1). LIV who is strapping the shoes on like working class lads - how they have played at the levels they have is beyond my comprehension, but see 1) and 2). I actually think Chelsea core of Kante Jorgino paired with some others Kovacacic, Wilian, Pulisic could be a nasty midfield combo, maybe the best in the EPL. Hopefully we get to see that in full display this weekend. Much of midfield interaction depends on the schemes deployed.

Anywho, Poch is awesome. How to get up that next rung or two? Better tactical / strategic management. Selecting a club whose GM and spending power gives him room to grow the team over a few seasons. Those two things. I just don't see Poch has having the persuasive skills of the German, the credibility of Pep. But I hope he does get there he deserves it.

Not sure I am buying Guardiola argument... didn't he cut his teeth on the youth system in Barca? Holland before that?(could be way wrong there). Cheated looked at the web, you may be right. A series of sensational moves after getting a bit of a gift with his first couple Barca youth teams. I do think he had alot to do with the Munich club playing some great soccer, though with those wingers and Lahm, how could it go wrong. These guys are IMHO impressively three great teachers. IMHO Klopp is the more motivational now, though perhaps Guardiola does it just as effectively just in his own way. I feel like they are both victims of their own successes. With the park the bus regularly encountered, Pep seems to have a small team capable of playing in tight spaces. Klopp more size a little less skill thus less ability to deal with the park the bus. Winning the EPL won't be easy with what they will face defensively. Champions I've always thought it helps to have some bigger players. Feel like RM fit that bill better than Barca ever did. Liverpool a better shot than Man City. With that said I want to see Man City make a run to CL, mebbe even win it, cause they just have some great players who I think should win that ultimate trophy.

Sometimes I think these coaches get too much credit. Although I am still perplexed at how some of their schemes unfold. We always brought defenders to the middle, made outside middies come back. LIV and CHLS seem like they bring the middle middies back the outside backs have to get back to play d. I guess when you have Kante, Jorgino, Fabinho, Wijnaldum, they are probably just as good as having a defender back there. And it is a "counterattacking strategy" some call "park the bus" (just a bit). Will be interesting to see what Pep does to try and get around Chelsea's defensive midfield. Probably a bit of bad luck they weren't in the LIV MC game, does he stick to his guns, or does he bring DeBruyne back, get him some more touches, and try to beat strength with strength.

Anyway we'll see .... I'd like to see CHLS 4 4 2 or 4231... i'd really like to see a 4321... 3-Kovac, Jorginho, Kante playing tight in middle, Willian and Pulisic outside 2s, and the best holding forward they have... Bats..Abraham? Prolly won't work out for Chels but will be interesting to watch how these matchups and strategies unfold. The former LIV man likely can make the difference whether it be from double teaming and scheming off of that or from him exploiting his defender. Love some B Silva as well, but he is out. Really think Pep has to be telling the midfield they will make or break this game.

Watched Chels MC this weekend, really don't like Pep's system. Plays 4 3 3, takes wingers out wide. Ordinarily I'd say cool, the mo space the mo better. But these guys are Sterling and BSilva (out last weekend). If I had to pick players, worldwide, they might be in a starting 11. So you figure they have lots of latitude, but they don't. They literally ask DSilva and DBruyne to come forward, come outside, be the straw to stir the drink, so to speak. DBruyne looked tired before half. I just have no idea how Sterling or BSilva wants to play in that system. "Let me go inside, boss you won't be disappointed". I get how you might think Aguero, Sterling, BSilva are all small guys and you want to get a guy like DBruyne in there, but I think they ask way too much of the guy... and his skill work seemed subpar for him.... which can happen when you are overworked. One of the few times Sterling was in the box he exploited a sliver of an opportunity and was just a sliver offside (technically, we never would have called him offside and I was a defender).

Total loss how that system is tolerated. Don't care what your credentials are or name is. Let them play I think they'd be the best team in the world within 5 games. (although they have to get a defender or two back. Watch out for Chelsea... those three mids are pretty good and learning to play with what they have. A better defensive back and they win that game.

Dude I'm sorry but you have no clue what you're talking about here. Citys entire system is predicated on getting wide with its wingers in cutting low balls to aguero and midfielders making runs. Utilizing triangles to get sterling and Silva on overlaps behind defenders and use constant runs to constantly put the defense under pressure. The reason debruyne looks so exhausted is because our defense has been predicated of 2 midfielders or 1 centerback and 1 midfielder for half the season. Hes being asked to do a lot more defensively. I'm sorry if our system doesnt live up to your standards but it's also one of the highest scoring teams of all time over the last 2 years.

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

edit: beaten by 13 seconds

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

I'd like to thank Tottenham for momentarily overshadowing the ongoing Arsenal dumpster fire.

In all seriousness, wow. Within this calendar year there was speculation that he'd get the next call from Madrid if Zidane moved on again. Fast forward to November and he's sacked by Spurs. What a soap opera this sport can be.

Wouldn't put it past Madrid to look his way now that he's a free agent practically luckily for spurs fans arsenal won't be getting much better with Emery around

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

and if Mou moves on to tottenham city will finally start beating them again!!!!

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

Mourinho to Tottenham through the end of 2022-23 season. You pretty much have to think that Levy made the move because he knew that Mourinho would come, which is pretty low thing to do to Poch.

What are the odds he sees out the contract?

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

What are the odds he sees out the contract?

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

It wasn't pretty but I'll take those 3 points, on to the next one! #UpTheReds #VARmotm

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Had to listen to the radio because I'm sure as hell not paying for gold. As soon as Zaha scored, I knew a win was coming. Nothing like leaving it late.
Also, yeah, that was a very interesting use of VAR. Had to watch the replay a couple times to figure out what they were even checking for.

Yeah I listened the same way. The LFC radio option is awesome, Martin Tyler style makes me anxious as all hell though 😂. Often use it while I'm at work to listen to the Champions League games too. Lots of talk on social media using the tongue/cheek word Li-VAR-pool 🤣. 3 points is 3 points though, Selhurst always is a tough place to go. Zaha missed a sitter though for sure.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

95% of today sucked for painfully obvious reasons...but Emery got sacked! Not a total loss. Seemed like a quality guy but ultimately not the answer.

Saw a great quote on Reddit....Solskjaer, Ljungberg, and Lampard will be facing off in Premier League football. 2002 wants its headline back.

The move took way too long to make. Ljungberg is good choice for caretaker, but I am curious to see how the club handles the head whistle moving forward. Allegri? Ancelotti? Benitez?

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Should have happened after Shef United during the International break.

Correy

Pochettino would be peak banter and I am here for it

Turned into a nervy game for sure after Adrian took 10 years to set the wall. Happy for the 3 points. Onto the merseyside derby where things might be interesting with us missing 2 out of our 3 Brazilians in the XI. #JusticeForThe96

Keeping this mindset, till someone is lifting the trophy in May 🤣😜:

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

That's being a bit harsh on Adrian. Didn't even have a proper chance to warm up and he's in the game trying to organize a wall. Can't say I've seen a ref look up and acknowledge the wall and keeper are clearly not in place and then blow the whistle to go for the kick.

I want to see a replay of the red card. Alisson seemed woefully out of position and it strikes me as odd he would make such a blatantly bad error. Klopp mentioned thinking it was offside and I'd like to know the same thing.

All in all, more nervy than it should have been but I'll take em however we get em.

It could certainly be harsh of me, but after watching the replay, it seemed the ref was tired of waiting for him to make adjustments to the wall.

As far as the Becker blunder, it was legit, he knew it the moment he did it. Didn't protest or anything. I think he was caught out of position, and chose to make a "save" versus letting the runner go free.

Definitely a good 3 points, I won't complain anytime we bring three points in.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

It was just a mistake by Allison. Happens I suppose. Still got the win.

Correy

VVD didn't get it, not surprised when you're going up against, a player that some regard as the best player to ever play on the pitch. I'll take 4 LFC players in the top 7 though, oh, and the CL trophy from last year:

#StillTheUnbearables #Six

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Come on now even a blind fool knows Messi is the best in the world and it's not even close the ONLY reason Barca were even in the tie against Liverpool was because of how amazing he was and unfortunately his teammates let him down unlike how Liverpool played as a team.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Um, I think I made it clear that Messi was worthy of winning; however, there is a tendency for the Champions League winner and overall domestic stand out to win the award. It was a normal season by Messi standards, he didn't win the CL, didn't win the Copa, and lastly we don't give the BDO for career performances, it's for a calendar year. Which falling short by 2 votes reflects.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

I mean the only reason messi hasnt won it every year for the last decade is because

1) ronaldo is also really really good
2) hes set absurd standards for himself to the point where people dont even bat an eye if he scores 45 goals in a season

I mean for instance look at suarez. Fantastic striker. His best season in the epl he averaged a hair under a goal per game. His best in la Liga just a hair above. Messi has averaged that every year since 2009, it's insane. I mean van djik is fantastic dont get me wrong but to compare his season to messis.... I think it's more of people riding the liverpool hype train

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

I'm not comparing the two. It's 🍎 s to 🍊 s, and I agree his self standards are insanely high. What I'm speaking to is the criteria for the award, historically speaking. Modric didn't have better stats than Messi last year, but he went extremely far at every level he played (club/country), and thus he won. I'm not sipping the LFC juice, I'm just going off the standards that the award has historically represented before two aliens came along (Mess/Rona)

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Oh I think modric didnt deserve it either, people point to his world cup run to validate it but messi was hands down the better player that year too. Note that he also came from an enormous fan base as well in real madrid. The problem is boredom. They dont want to give it to the same player every year so they manufacture drama.

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

I think we are stating similar points. Modric had a national team run. Ronaldo's last BdO was when Portugal won the Euro's. Messi gets them largely based on his performances in his domestic league. I agree though they want parity now after Ron has 5 and Messi has 6.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Not going to lie, I will be totally pumped to see Messi in person in a few years when he inevitably "retires" to MLS for one last contract. Even if he's older and slowing down....the GOAT is the GOAT.

COMPLETELY agree, I've been trying so hard to go and see him play. We went to an Argentina v. El Salvador friendly at FedEx, and he never got in the game. All of the stateside Barcelona matches have been outside of the DC/Utah reach, so it sucks for sure. Hoping he at least plays here for a year so I can see him in person.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

At some point people have to acknowledge some trends with Messi. He can still be your GOAT, but he went 12 straight CL QF matches without scoring, and only had 1 assist across those 12 matches as well, he finally broke that streak against Man United last season, which was a very favorable QF draw. He also choked two years in a row with a 3 goal lead on the road in Rome and Anfield. He had 180+ minutes to be the difference in either match and ultimately produced nothing. His teammates had bad games as well, but if Michael Jordan or Lebron had those kind of no shows on the biggest stages they would get an unbelievable amount of grief for it. He hasn't gotten it done in a knockout tournament since 2015 (Then you have to go back to 2011 once you pass 2015, when he had peak Xavi, Iniesta, and Pep) when he had peak Suarez Neymar MSN trident with him. Just the reality of the situation. He will go down as the best advanced stats player of all time, but in recent years he has been much more like James Harden, setting advanced analytics on fire all season, only to falter in the biggest moments.

It is what it is, but for someone who has watched this sport closely for 10+ years, particularly watching La Liga primarily there is no player in any sport that is so adamantly and aggressively defended from any and all blame when Barca fail. I watch it happen every single season, up until April/May (whenever Barca gets knocked out of the CL) all you hear is Pique is the best CB in the world (he never is), Alba best LB in the world, Busquets still best holding mid, etc. Some of the players have changed over the years, but the rhetoric is the same, then they blow a huge lead (Roma, Liverpool), get completely stifled (Atleti, Juve), get knocked out of the CL and somehow the entire Barca squad becomes a bunch of farmers holding back poor helpless Messi from his deserved CL titles. It's like a broken record.

His teammates had bad games as well, but if Michael Jordan or Lebron had those kind of no shows on the biggest stages they would get an unbelievable amount of grief for it.

Nobody talks about LeBron's 2010 Boston series any more, and for good reason -- it's just not that relevant relative the entirety of his impact on the sport in terms of his career and in terms of his on-court influence.

I understand how annoying Cules Twitter is, but that should have just as much influence on anyone's opinion of Messi as the equally annoying Madridista Twitter/CR7 fanbois has on Ronaldo.

Like I'm just at the point where (with both players) if someone is tired and fatigued of hearing about them, that person isn't paying enough attention because what they're doing is incredible.

The Messi love from Barca supporters is totally amusing to me because it balances all the Messi hate from Argentina supporters. You'd expect the situations to be reversed there tbh

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

The problem with that comparison is that Lebron and Messi's situations went opposite directions. Messi's greatest run of success came early (2008-2012) with a blip in 2015 back to the top, whereas since Lebron's poor 2010 finals showing, which he was absolutely raked across the coals repetitively for, he has won multiple championships, including the most improbable finals comeback of all time against a vastly superior team across the board.

I'm also not tired of Messi, while he has been a thorn in my ass for many years, I just hate the Messi fanboy element which is enormous, unlike anything I've ever seen in sports. What Messi does in La Liga every season is absolutely mesmerizing, much like Ronaldo's 2013-2018 run in the CL, just unplayable for most of that time period. It's just gotten really old to watch my last paragraph in my above post play out every single year for the last 8 years except 2015.

Tbf you're also comparing vastly different sports. It's a lot easier for one individual to make a difference on a basketball court than on a soccer pitch.

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

It's easier, but they are by far the most similar sports for comparison sake as they are the most free flowing and share a lot of the same concepts (spacing, zonal marking, etc.). Those comparisons are as apt as they come for comparing across different sports, and I didn't want to make it a Ronaldo/Messi thing.

So what's your conclusion/point - are you just saying that's he's not perfect and should be held accountable when his team falters in big moments?

Hokie fan | W&M grad

I was responding to this

Come on now even a blind fool knows Messi is the best in the world and it's not even close the ONLY reason Barca were even in the tie against Liverpool was because of how amazing he was and unfortunately his teammates let him down unlike how Liverpool played as a team.

This entire quote is exactly what I'm talking about. Clearly the best in the world and it's not close, but has played well on the biggest stages once in the last 8 years?

Only reason it was close was how amazing he was and his teammates let him down... It's exactly what I'm talking about. He had 90+ minutes to make something happen in Rome, one away goal makes the tie near unloseable. Same exact story at Anfield. Why is it always his teammates let him down? He is expected by his teammates to be the difference in those games and he hasn't been many times over. Also his teammates and himself make up the highest wage bill in the world and it's been that way for a long time.

I mean if his teammates had finished the few chances at the end of the first leg in spain i.e Dembele in particular it wouldve been 4 or 5 nil tie over. I get it can get old but the guys simply brilliant, the way he and Ronaldo pushed each other for years has been amazing to see. Just cause his defence has been horrid the last few years doesnt take away how good he really is. Not to mention Valverde's tactics havent been too good in the CL lately with being so passive at times. I'm not gonna say hes blameless but there are 10 other guys out there who at some point have to help out a little more hes no spring chicken anymore.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I realize this happens, but misses like this happen (almost) every single match. If you're looking to use them as a defense, we have to acknowledge the frequency with which people miss good chances in this sport. I've watched Real Madrid lose matches with 30+ shots and 20+ shots on target. Messi isn't the only player whose teammates blow chances.

I see, I can understand the annoyance of hearing the same comments over and over. He's also had the benefit of being in an organization that built a team and a playing style around his strengths, including the right coaches. That said, who would you say is the goat, if not messi?

Hokie fan | W&M grad

"Going down, going down, going down..." #MerseysideArseWhooping
One short of:

How fitting 😂
Merry Christmas Evertonians...😜

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

...that sinking feeling.

Mane was superb today.

That Divock touch from that long ball from Lovren, Beautiful!

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Everton won't go down. They'll fire their manager and get someone in who will save their season. They have to much quality to go down (though I get tired of seeing Richarlison go down anytime someone gets within 1 yard of him. The FA needs to look at rues changes)

Correy

Shanks had some gems, another is "If Everton were playing in my back garden, I'd draw the curtains"

They'll just hire renowned relegation stopper Big Sam Allardyce. Well, re-hire in this case.

But yes, it's definitely surprising to see them even in the zone in December. Plenty of investment in that club over the last few years.

Can anyone but the foxes challenge Liverpool this year.

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

I think liverpool win it this season at a Cantor. The injuries are piling up for us and barring a similar injury crisis to liverpool I dont think they have much to worry about. Cant see Leicester's form lasting. I'm thrilled to see city youngsters get a run though. It's awesome seeing angelino get regular time, hoping to see more foden here soon and Aleix garcia got a shout Tuesday

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

I think the foxes will challenge for longer than most anticipate. I think a pivotal point of their season is about to come up when they have City and Liv back to back. That'll really tell the story of what the rest of their season should look like.

I kind of disagree with Esh, I think the Reds will have to fight tooth and nail to finish on top. I love the form they are in, I just can't see it lasting. December and January will be brutal for us. I took a gander at the congestion and fixture matchups over the next two months, and I think if we get through the end of January unscathed it will be nothing short of a miracle. I hope all of our notable players stay injury free, but we've gotten some hits too this year. Becker's injury early on had us rely on a Adrian more than I would've liked. Joel Matip has been hurt, and may stay hurt for awhile based on recent news. Our best midfielder Fabihno will be out till the new year. Salah has been draining fluid off of his ankle after every game over the last month or so. So yeah, we've been hit with the injury bug pretty bad too. I won't say it out loud, but we all know what injury it would take for our season to take a downward turn, so I'm hoping the boys can stay upright and get through this fog over the next two months.

At this point my biggest fear is losing against Salzburg and having to drop down to the Europa league. That would force us to travel to places that would easily lend way for an injury to occur. So hopefully we take care of business and avoid that from happening.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

I mean sure liverpool have had their injuries but the fixture congestion is exactly why I think other teams are going to falter as well. City are stretched thin already and wont be able to rotate bodies well at all, and the injury crisis at city is a whooooooole lot worse we are without the following right now

2 first choice left backs
2 centerbacks
A striker
A left wing (I have my doubts about sterling as well)

And that doesnt include the other injuries weve suffered at

Goalkeeper
Central mid (*2) (still dont think Rodri is 100% yet)
Attacking mid

I mean outside of walker sterling and silva2.0 we havent had a single first team player stay healthy all season and sure we have tons of depth but I dont think any team can sustain the injuries at the back we have and continue to produce

I think the gulf is already to large. City will make it interesting but I'd be shocked if liverpool blow this. And Leicester does not have the depth to hang with liverpool. Fixture congestion is an even bigger problem for them around the hollidays, what happens if they run vardy into the ground? They're totally screwed. Where city and liverpool can typically eat an injury like that (see the formerly mentioned aguero injury and salah as you mentioned) Leicester absolutely cannot.

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

worth noting that LEI's squad isn't as deep, but they also aren't playing in Europe either. Fewer midweek fixtures down the stretch, and it wouldn't surprise me if the kids play early on in the FA and EFL cups to preserve first team legs and maybe even have a strategic but understandable early exit

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Esh, come on man, ya'll have significant depth, and the centerback situation is a issue created by your unwillingness to address that issue over the summer. I'm not trying to throw shade AT ALL, because I enjoy your insight on EPL topics. But you certainly won't find many shedding a tear for Man City's current injury problem, because of the quality of depth you have on your bench. Names like Mahrez and Jesus ride the pine. That is a beautiful problem to have. I understand most of your issues are on the back line, but yet again, that could've been addressed by signing the likes of Maguire and other notable defensive players.

The advantage that the Foxes have is they aren't playing European football, so that negates the fixture congestion that we're experiencing where LFC is fighting on 5 fronts right now, versus 3 for the Foxes. So I think they'll stay in it longer than most pundits are willing to say. Running Vardy into the ground is certainly a potential worry, as is the constant chatter about Brendan going to the gunners, or the January poaching that might take place, but honestly those are the only threats I see to them faltering. At least Salah can play still on a bum ankle, Aguero doesn't have that luxury; however, you do have Jesus as a suitable replacement, versus a Shaq or Origi. The difference it talent is massive in my opinion.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

I'm not asking to shed a tear but I am explaining why I believe liverpool are gonna win the league with a bit of breathing room this year. The injury to laporte has been a title shattering injury, not only due to our lack of talent but due to his importance in both defense and buildup (as well as the fact that hes a stud for 50/50s and corners and the rest of our defense is pretty small)

If we had brought in Maguire I think wed still be looking at some serious issues because theres typically a learning curve with peps system (see one cancelo hardly seeing the field yet despite being a perfect fit). Furthermore laporte is impossible to replicate. You're cherry picking positions here. Sure were deep up top (thank god because I agree aguero and sane going down would tank most teams) but we weren't at center mid or centerback or left back. Those happen to be the 3 positions where weve dealt with the most injuries further magnifying the issue.

As for Leicester I would be shocked if Brendan Roger's jumped ship mid season. I think theyll keep sniffing around the top 3 but I do worry about injuries or form running out. As much as my fantasy team would love to see vardy keep killing it (I was ahead of the curve on this one! Called it preseason!) I feel like he has to come back to earth eventually and outside of maddison and tielemens i cant really name another goal scorer on that roster (and iheanacho but that's just due to blind homerism)

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

Well, guess he's sticking around then:

I agree with most of what you say. I guess the only part I was getting at was that not going after Maguire was potentially a crippling mistake. I think what was an even greater mistake was not bringing back Kompany. That veteran leadership would prove useful right now, and he'd definitely be an option at the CB position for ya. He wouldn't solve the problems you have, but he would certainly be a decent band-aid. I think it's odd that you'd rather take Fern out the midfield to put him at CB, rather than hope you can get SOMETHING out of Otamendi. I think that's been a puzzling decision as well.

I think being a LFC supporter requires you to expect the worst, yet hope for the best when it comes to the PL title. I refuse to believe we are in the pole position. I keep having nightmares that Brendan is going to steal away the title with LC. I think we're in a great position, I truly do, but I refuse to allow myself to believe until about February. I think if we have a 8-10 point lead by February then I'll start to believe that we have at least one fingernail on the trophy.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

I recall LFC's form slipping after BRodgers signed an extension, a warning sign for the Foxes.

One can only hope Kop...

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Yeah no offense to arsenal fans but that's going to be one hell of a rebuild if I'm rodgers I'd stick to Leicester. As for kompany hed been saying for years he wanted to go back to anderlecht there was nothing we could do there. I guess my point is it doesnt matter if we had macguire or not, I still think wed have quite the deficit here, we might have won another game or 2 but we certainly wouldnt be anywhere near liverpool atm.

As for otamendi hes been dinged up a bit this season and is just to aggressive to rely on. He gets reds and comes in with slide tackles that would make joey Barton blush. Hes personally responsible for a few of our losses this year and his passing isnt as good as fernandinhos. Plus with fern and rodri on the field we can run a hybrid double pivot when were building up. It gives a bit more flexibility and something just different for teams to prepare for. I think pep is trying to make up for the loss of laportes passing and buildup from the back with fernandinho.

As for yall, I really think this is the year you exercise the demons. With some of the miracle late goals you've had, coupled with the lead you have and the absolute confidence klopp instills in the team...I think this is it. Frankly barring an all time great city team last year you wouldve won, you guys are still producing like last year and city absolutely wont repeat the feat

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

This is a little OT but I doubt enough people on TKP care enough for me to make a new thread all for this, but:

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Marco Silva out at Everton

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I really don't think I can watch this team like this. I've already stopped my score alerts on my phone because it's almost always bad news. I'm having more fun being a non-partial observer in other leagues right now, honestly.

Shame, Adidas brought the fire this year. Lots of merch would have been on my Christmas list but it's too shameful as it stands.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

I really don't see how we recover. There's nobody to count in in the entire club right now...player, coach, management, ownership.

The state of this club. It feels so dysfunctional and hopeless to me right now that I am tempted to start calling them the Islington Redskins.

Freddie gets to be an Invincible forever...but he's gone too far too fast in his coaching career. We're going to end up out of European football entirely before it's over.

Yeah it's pretty rough. Thank goodness I'm #1 in Hokie FPL now to help ease the pain

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

I'm only..... 99 points behind you. Methinks it's time for a Wildcard use.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Best bet for the club is get in a guy like Benitez and let him build a good base to play from but right now David luiz and co look horendous I can see why Chelsea were happy to sell him now

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Bout time we got a comfortable 3 points. Tuesday looms large, glad the boys were able to stay on neutral for most of the 2nd half. Hoping Lovren is ok.

Totty got busy today, and man, can't say I seen ManUre beating the Cityzens. I know every fan base has their share of idiots, but after the berating Fred took, I'm glad they lost, not so much for the City supporters, but just so that ONE supporter feels just as dumb tonight after he hopefully received a lifetime ban. We really need to clean the game up.

Hoping LC can drop points, and it'll surely be a nice weekend of footy.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Yeah city is investigating and I really hope we boot him for good. Absolutely inexcusable especially given the stance weve taken with sterling and the support weve given him. If were serious about that message that fan needs to be nowhere near the team

Taylor, looking desperately throws it deep..HAS A MAN OPEN DANNY COALE WITH A CATCH ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE FIVE!!!!....hes still open

I think over time it actually will get better. Simply because most of the time the clips of these fools end up on social media within minutes. Especially in the top flight leagues where the matches are aired worldwide. The clubs will never be short on evidence to ban them from the ground.

Like they'll eventually all get banned or wise up enough to keep their trash behavior in private.

I disagree, I don't think it'll improve, passively. Or even with the fear of being outed on social media. I think it'll take clubs having a heavy hand, and punishing fans who act this way. Zero tolerance is necessary. These bell ends aren't scared of being outed on social media. They do it because they have no desire to hate in private, they rather do it publicly. They think it's ok. Things won't change until clubs take a firm stance. You abuse the players or fellow fans in any way, we're handing you over to the people that will punishing you to fullest extent. Period. Campaigns against racism need to be at the forefront in the same way that LGBT movements are supported. This needs to be serious. And the teams have to be held to a standard too. They need to be fined if they allow this to happen. Pressure from the top (FA) on down is the only way this will change. And broad education for the fans. Soccer is a sport that transcends everything. It's one of the reasons I love the sport. This power can't lay dormant any longer.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Yep...this. I hate manUre, buy that was sickening....totally I called for...dock them 10 points

After seeing the Black Friday headline in the Italian papers honestly it's sick to see this shit keep going I gotta give Fred major kuddos for not losing it in the corner

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Unfortunate for two defenders who had played every PL minute this year.

As we enter the festive fixtures over the holidays, squad rotation will be imperative for every club and manager

VB born, class of '14