OT: EPL AND OTHER LEAGUES 2022-2023 PART 2

WE BACK

A few Carabao Cup matches taking place this week and then EPL starts back up on Boxing Day (Dec 26).

Ligue 1 and La Liga start back up later next week, Serie A resumes after the New Year, and the Bundesliga won't be back until Jan 20 (they always take a winter break so that is normal).

The winter transfer window opens Jan 2 (there will be a separate thread).

Discuss any and all soccer related things here!

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DISCLAIMER: Forum topics may not have been written or edited by The Key Play staff.

Comments

I am personally excited to return to higher quality club football. I already don't care too much about International football, and fucking with the club season in order to have it in Qatar put me in a particularly sour mood heading into this World Cup. It's a shame it could end up having a huge impact on the outcomes. Gabriel Jesus' injury stands out as a potential negative from the timing of this World Cup. Which is a huge shame given Arsenal's incredible start to the EPL season. The winter window coming right after the World Cup could be interesting as well given its usual impact in regards to transfers of the breakout stars in the summer window.

While Jesus' injury is particularly unfortunate (and no one hates it more than me), I don't know of too many other major injuries that happened at the World Cup? Now there will almost certainly be knock-on effects in the second half of the season from the sheer amount of minutes being played, but as far as acute injuries suffered during the tournament I don't think there are many.

And, even if the WC had occurred as normally scheduled, Jesus would still have missed at least the first month of the season (ignoring the fact that he might never have been transferred to Arsenal at all).

Sure, but I'm not assuming he has the exact same injury if it's played in the Summer in a different location. My primary grief with the midseason WC is the fixture congestion element, not necessarily acute injuries, but that Jesus one does stand out as a possibly impactful one.

Yeah I think there will be a lot of pulled hammys in March and April.

Everyone ready to NOT see CR7 in a Man U kit?
Sorta like:

PS, and shout out to 78 there!!!!

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Man, I almost forgot how much I hate spurs. If only they would play the same way for all 90. What a crazy way to play week in and week out.

Go Hokies!

Good first day back at the office ✅
Nketiah scoring, Mudryk bid placed, Arsenal win

Huge for Eddie to get one and buoy his confidence. Michael Oliver can shove it...that was an absolute atrocity of a penalty decision.

Go Hokies!

What was bad about it? Think it's a foul called anywhere else on the pitch, the angle from behind showed the contact on Bowen's trailing leg that put him off.

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

Think it's pretty soft given that Bowens reaction was far greater than the contact. Yes he did touch him but he didn't fall until he tried to shoot 2-3 steps later.

Edit: Just watched it again and yes definitely a pen. Poor challenge and moment from Saliba. The point below still stands though.

It's not indefensible but it's just so frustrating to see that given when there are so many much worse fouls that aren't given as penalties week in and week out. Jesus v Southampton and Mings body slamming Saka against Villa come to mind.

Yea I have several major issues with the call, including what you mentioned about consistency of the call on the field.

Secondly, not even a look from VAR?! With that little contact with such a match altering decision, it's maddening that didn't buzz MO to go take a look. I'd still disagree with the call if he went over and looked, and decided it was still a pen, but at least give it a look!

Also also, it's just not a foul for me. It's so, so soft. Admittedly my red and white north London glasses may not be helping see clearly here, but I don't feel like there was a look where a foul was definitively made. Saliba even pulled back on his legs a bit through the danger zone and (as Jglad said) Bowen doesn't go down until 2-3 steps later when he sees his shot is not going to work. Felt like a lowest common denominator kind of call.

Go Hokies!

Definitely soft but definitely a pen imo.

Saliba hits his trailing leg as it comes off the ground, when that left leg next touches ground, he falls.

Players (and refs) are damned either way -- either youre flopping to sell it when you get clipped, or you dont flop and fall and get accused of flopping bc you didnt immediately get taken out.

Either way 3 pts is 3 pts coyg coyg coyg

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

Hell yea, great response in the second half no matter the call. Go 1-0 each week 🤣 (too soon?)

Go Hokies!

1-0 to the Arsenal is about a 30 year old joke

Think it was in reference to Fuente's 1-0 trope and our collective PTSD as Hokies

Once this particular call is made there is no way VAR is overturning it. Oliver clearly saw it, so if he decided it was enough for a penalty, the VAR isn't going to intervene unless he sees that there was no contact at all. If Oliver didn't get a good look at the incident, I doubt he would have called it on the field.

I feel like Saka could get suplexed and not get a call sometimes.

I mean that basically exactly happened earlier in the season...

I wonder if Ivan Toney will be able to parlay his 4 goals in the last 3 games into a move to a bigger club. Could be worth gambling on.

Honestly think his gambling investigation will hold of anyone until the summer. I could see him fitting in at a Chelsea or man united who desperately need that kind of player.

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

Yeah lol I just wanted to make a pun

I completely missed it in my first read through kudos

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

Some super interesting (and Arsenal friendly 🤞🏻) results so far in EPL. Feels like Lampard should've been fired about three times over by now, but they just keep cranking out results. Same with Fulham, what a story!

Go Hokies!

City and Newcastle dropping points and Arsenal 2-0 up?

I ❤️ Martin Ødegaard

(Stephen A voice) I mean my God...

What a talent.

Go Hokies!

Wonder what the German word is for being terrible at defending crosses from wide areas 😬

Go Hokies!

Tough campaign thus far. Four years without addressing the midfield (other than Thiago) is really starting to show. It's applying a ton of responsibility on the front line and back line. I'm not sure what Jurgie can do to fix this in-season, but he has a hell of job right now to fix this before the season is lost. I'm hopeful, and that's just the Red tinted frames I'm wearing.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Yeah, midfield looks quite poor. Never replaced Wijnaldum, Keita hasn't really lived up to it, Elliot isn't a midfielder. Defense looked dreadful as well though. It's jarring to see after the level they've been at the past few years. I've always enjoyed watching Klopp's Liverpool, but it's hardly recognizable at this point.

I think Gakpo is a great player but I don't understand why it's necessary? Like I know some are injured, but you have Firmino, Nunez, Diaz, Jota, Salah, and now Gakpo. That's great, but you need a midfielder! I know it's hard to sign players in January, but I don't get it.

I think you hit the nail on the head with the Elliott comment. Elliott was brought in to be a winger, and to learn underneath Salah (Carvalho was brought in to be a winger as well). The lack of investment in our midfield after Gini's departure/Keita's inability to stay on the pitch 2-3 games at a time forced Harvey into a role he was never called to be in. Same goes for Carvalho. We've placed technically gifted forwards into midfield positions, when Klopp's system was always premised on the idea of winning the ball back in the midfield to spurn the counter attack. Don't get me wrong Harvey has a motor to run all over the place; however, he's a technical player, not a high energy, hold the ball up, and get it moving forward kind of player.

I think our defense is built on the idea that high energy, gritty, press-monsters are present in the midfield, and without those players there, our backline has been exposed since the beginning of the season. You can press your wing-backs forward when you have gritty midfielders falling back into those positions.

I think Gakpo was a need with the injuries to Jota and Diaz (Firmino is out too). They're slated to return March/April time frame, that's too long to go with Ox at the left winger position. It was a position of need at a reasonable price. Midfielders are insanely priced right now (Caicedo, Jude, Enzo, et.al.). We only have ourselves FSG to blame for the lack of investments in the midfield. Now there's this idea that it's Jude or bust come summer. You think Jude will play for a team that isn't competing in the CL next season? I want Jude as much as the next guy, but I'd say spend the money that you've put aside for Jude, and get 2-3 midfielders right now. But I'm just a fanboy on the sideline. I'm sure every team knows our need for a midfielder, and they're pricing their transfers accordingly when we come in with an offer. It's a bad situation. All we can do is weather the storm and hope somehow we make top four.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Right, I knew I was forgetting someone with Carvalho.

Liverpool have done a fantastic job buying before it becomes a need in attack (Jota, Diaz, Nunez) but that's a lot of attackers when the injured players come back. Someone won't be happy with playing time eventually. Good problem to have I guess but it's puzzling when there is another position crying out for a new player (or 3).

Agreed, I think Bobby will be the odd man out; not to say he won't sign a short-term extension. I think they want Gakpo to be a 9 or a 10.

I'm bias, but the only signing that I can remember during the Klopp era that hasn't panned out is Keita. He's so injury prone and thus he lacks the motor necessary to "keep going" from match to match. I know a lot of people are down on Nunez, but he's 23, and I think he's still trying to figure out when to shoot, and when to pass. I believe he'll get there. 9 goals and 3 assists thus far isn't the best return, but it isn't the worst.

Seasons like this separate the real supporters from the fake ones. Especially here in the states. I'm sure as a Gunner you can relate, the beauty of one successful season, outweighs the ugliness of several rough ones. I'm rooting for anyone to win the EPL but City, I hope you guys can get across the finish line. Cheers.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Being able to use 5 subs means they will all get a decent chunk of playing time when healthy. Klopp also showed he is willing to switch to a 4-2-3-1, which may be the way forward once Diaz gets back with the lack of penetration from midfield. I still don't understand why Carvalho didn't get any minutes these last two games over AOC. AOC was dreadful against LC and wasn't much better last night, the goal notwithstanding. I've wanted him to be the player he was before injury, but his legs are just gone. He is a cup rotation player at best right now.

I just don't see Klopp dropping Hendo for extended periods, so I'm sure the thinking is Fab/Hendo and Thiago/Keita can cover two spots while Jones/Elliot/Carvalho rotate in the band of 3 when needed.

Also, seemed like VVD picked up a knock, but that might be for the best. Matip/Konate are probably the best pairing until VVD can get right. JoGo just gets too lost at times and Nat Phillips is just an imaginary name at this point.

Like you, I'm not very concerned about playing time; I totally agree that the 5 subs should provide us with the opportunity to rotate, so long as we start to build leads rather than playing from behind.

I'm with you, I was suprised that Carvalho didn't get a look, especially after his goal against City. Ox is a shell of his former self knees, and I'm not sure why Klopp continues to put him in the XI for league ties. I think 4-2-3-1 is the long term goal for the squad; however, until Gakpo is ready and Bobby returns, we don't have 4 that can go up top. Granted, we don't have a legit 3 that can play consistently in the middle either. I was reading somewhere that Harvey already has roughly 1,000 minutes played. I highly doubt that was the plan going into the year. We struck out on Tchoumeni and I fear we may strike out on Jude if we don't get top 4. I really hope that we have a Plan B, else it'll be two straight summers we lose our primary midfield rebuild target.

Lastly I think we could use to buy another CB as well, someone similar to the Konate mold. Granted, that'll probably be a summer signing. Up Team #SummerFC, smh.

#UTFRalways

Edit: I may throw up after typing this, but I think this is why Fergie constantly tacked on a new signing or two even after winning trophies the year before. There has to be a footprint in every squad that is hungry to win more. Our core has won the whole lot over the last 4-5 years. I know competitive people remain competitive, but we often forget that these people are human, and sometimes life occurrences outweigh achieving more. I fear the mental weariness is the biggest life occurrence this team is battling with at the moment. I've said it time and time again, going for a quadruple will take a lot out of any team.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

Very impressed by Newcastle's defense. So tough to break down, especially without Ødegaard's best game.

Not quite sure why Burn pulling down Gabriel or the last minute handball weren't given as penalties but that's referee variance for you. The lack of stoppage time was annoying though considering Newcastle spent the entire second half wasting time. I really wish they would implement the World Cup stoppage time because for me that is one of the most annoying things that consistently happens in soccer and the referees *never* add enough time. And yes I would say the same thing if Arsenal were the ones wasting time.

I agree that the shirt pull should have given, but that foul by Joelinton shouldn't have been given so it evened out for me. Newcastle have been expert time wasters/shithousers this season.

Meh, it's iffy. He got the ball yes. That doesn't necessarily mean it's not a foul. I don't think it was worthy of a yellow but Joelinton was mugging players all game without being booked. I think it was a foul. The referee was shocking - complete lack of control of the match.

I have no doubt Newcastle are expert time wasters. I do find it funny that they were just moaning about Leeds time wasting just a few days ago and now all their fans are saying "it's part of the game, deal with it." Which is it?

Like I said, I can't stand it no matter who is doing it. I realize that it disproportionally affects Arsenal more than other clubs who aren't facing parked buses as often, but I don't like it when Arsenal do it either. Adding the correct amount of time to the end of a match is just not that hard and I don't understand why fans are just fine with being robbed of 30% of the game that they're paying for.

The average ball-in-play time for PL games this season is 61 minutes. Depending on who was tracking it, last nights game was somewhere between 43-51 minutes. So there were 10-17(!!!) minutes wasted, most of which I assume were in the second half and most of which were by Newcastle. And there's 5 minutes added. Egregious

Ridiculous. They've known each other since they were in middle school. Childish on Claudio's part. And one of THE biggest issues with youth soccer in the US. Claudio pouting because his boy isn't getting playing time.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Oh and by the way, Claudio is the Sporting Director for an MLS club! For now anyway.

The ESPN story has been changed to say it was Gio's mom who made the threats, I wonder if she's trying to take the fall so Claudio won't be fired.

Everyone knows its Claudio. And the lifelong friendship between all of them is now lost.

What a terrible example to the world of what is wrong with youth soccer in the US.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

It's insane lol. Very sad though honestly. And the statement from the mom...like if the "incident" was so much worse as she says, then why are you digging it up now? Making one of your oldest friends relive what you describe as a traumatic incident because your son's coach was mean to him is seriously messed up.

I feel the worst for Rosalind (Berhalter's wife) and Gio. Because I'm quite sure Gio didn't have anything to do with this and now his future with the national team is in doubt. What a mess. All because some intern at Charter wrongly released Gregg's comments at that conference.

FYI, Berhalter's contract expired Dec. 31. In the midst of the investigation into this incident, US Soccer has named assistant coach Anthony Hudson the interim manager for the January camp. It's not really a big deal at all since it will be comprised entirely of MLS and youth players, but just in case anyone wanted to know.

This whole thing reeks of the pay to play and entitlement of the US soccer setup. I can't express how much I despise how the Reyna's have behaved in this entire ordeal. They unfortunately will most likely get exactly what the want with berhalter no longer the coach because of the issues surrounding us soccer and this incident with Gregg and his now wife coming to light.

Gio has in my eyes looked really poor in this as well. Youre a professional player speak up and tell your parents to drop it or look very meek and wimpy.

I feel the worst for Gregg and the worst for his wife who now has this come to light and will be judged and viewed by everyone in a different light after this. Such a spineless typical new jersey housewife pile of utter bullshit from the Reyna's. Nobody wins here and if you're the next head coach how do you handle Reyna going forward? Bench him and you'll have Claudio going behind your back?

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

Love this spicy take as I agree with it! Pretty pathetic how this whole thing went down, especially from Reynas side

Go Hokies!

New Jersey out here catching strays for no reason smh

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

If Berhalter is still manager, apologize on your hands and knees to Gio. It (presumably) wasn't his fault his parents threw a hissy fit, but Berhalter never should have made the comments he did, even if it was supposed to be private.

If it's a new manager, there's no problem. Gio is a top US player and the new manager can tell the Reynas to pound sand.

Gio isn't even in the country.
He's staying out of it, as he should. I don't find any fault in his response (or lack thereof) to what has come to light now. If he does, it opens the door for the tantrum he allegedly threw in Qatar, so it's not going to help him in any way. He's 20. He's playing soccer overseas. He's doing what he's supposed to be doing. The adults were not.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

US offered the job to Zidane 👀

He doesn't speak English...and no way he wants to walk into a daycare center of a program now.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Yeah it was never likely to happen. But at least they tried!

But, like many things around the organization, it's fluff. Be busy to look busy. They knew Gregg's contract was up and that there was a good chance he wasn't going to be back. So, cute, they asked Zindane. Let's get to the real business of finding the next manager for the next 4 years to get us successful in the 2026 World Cup.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Gotta shoot your shot. We have a decent young team and host the next world cup we should be able to do well if we have to replace GB

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

So much fin to watch Newcastle's first team play and be successful, for a change.
Onto the semi's of the Cup.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Ciao Felix with a nice debut. Pun intended

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

Came here to post something about this earlier but got distracted. Chelsea are the car wreck you can't look away from right now.

Felix actually was looking quite good until the sending off. Thought he was by far their best player. But LOL he's going to miss 3 matches, which is 15% of their remaining PL matches and represents about $2m in loan fee and wages. Amazing

Tale of two halves in the Manchester Derby. Boring drab first half mostly, pulsating rollicking second half.

VERY contentious equalizer for united -- i have no clue how the goal was given. Even though rashford never touched the ball, he absolutely influenced the play and it should have been called offside

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

As a united fan that goal is tricky he doesn't touch it but does shield it but still I'm not gonna complain my hate for pep and city has me biased. Ten Haag has this team playing as a team for the first time in ages, I'm forever grateful we avoided conte and hired Ten Haag.

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

Defenders and gk are in a no win situation. You have to treat him as if he's onside, especially because he's running with the ball at his feet. Akanji was closing from behind but can't foul him bc it could be a red, but if rashford isnt over the ball he could run directly to it. Absolutely shambolic call imo

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

I won't disagree that the rule is a mess it is but you still play to the whistle. City were dropping like flies begging for cards all day and the ref let a bit go at times but didn't do horribly. If akanji actually plays the ball even if he fouled an offside rashford VAR would have overturned it if it happened anyway as he was offside. Instead city assume the flag will go and quit playing it's a lazy excuse to me city had enough of the ball they hardly created enough quality chances for a team with that much talent.

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

If rashford isn't offside and the goal stands, why would offside overrule a red card? You have to play him as if he's live. Nobody "gave up" on that play, they all reacted as if Rashford was through on goal and could score. Not least being Ederson.

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

VAR can overturn red cards and they could have deemed him offside there for not a foul but the distance akanji plays off rashford was piss poor defending.
Id disagree on the giving up part the way the defence was so slow to react to rashford to me looked like they thought the flag would come up and the way ederson held his ground I think was due to him thinking the whistle would blow. I'd agree the rule is shit and needs fixing but the rules there now and the refs on the field talked it through to their decision which I think is better than having VAR dissect every frame for an eternity.

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

Understand this is from a City account and I don't agree with the bellyaching... Just difficult for me to believe rashford didnt influence the play at all. Clearly akanji could have gotten there before bruno, or perhaps even ederson. And bruno wouldn't have taken the angle he did if rashford wasnt running with the ball at his feet.

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

I don't understand how anyone can have an opinion about this other than they absolutely blew the call. It's crystal clear. I thought United played well enough for a result, but this is very clearly the wrong decision. Another sterling performance from Premier League officials

I have 14 years of refereeing youth, high school, and college spring games. This was 100% offside no matter which way you slice it. Absolutely gained an advantage by being in that position. The fact people are saying "he didn't touch it" don't know what they're talking about, as he was over top of the ball, effectively "playing" it for the better part of 20+ yards. Old Trafford call.

"GO BACK TO YOUR ROOM LITTLE BROTHER, THE CUP IS COMIN’ ON HOME!”

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

So Klopp might really be done huh

As poor as it's going for Liverpool I did not see this result coming after the whole trossard fallout

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

Brighton have ascended beyond the need for Trossard. Rest of the team is very good

Just to add on to this - their new manager De Zerbi is fantastic. What a job Brighton have done with both player and staff recruitment. Mitoma, McAllister, Caicedo, Evan Ferguson, all phenomenal. Really hope they can hold on to all of those players and push into Europe (except McAllister because I want him at Arsenal 😬)

Crazy to go from "we could win four trophies" 7 months ago to...this

Go Hokies!

To be fair liverpool are very very injury hit, that's a tough ask for any manager.

But oof that performance was bad

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

Looking forward to forgetting about transfers for a few hours to watch the NLD. Hoping it goes much differently than last time at WHL. But, having not won there since 2013, expecting a frustrating draw. Big opportunity to stretch the gap back to 8 points.

Key for me will be Kulusevski's fitness. Very good player - probably the only Spurs player I wish we could have at Arsenal.

Man Spurs really need to replace Lloris

He's also trying to blame Sess and putting his hands up and shaking his head. That's 100% on him. Embarrassing behavior for a skipper.

"GO BACK TO YOUR ROOM LITTLE BROTHER, THE CUP IS COMIN’ ON HOME!”

Fire Lloris into the sun.

"GO BACK TO YOUR ROOM LITTLE BROTHER, THE CUP IS COMIN’ ON HOME!”

CØYG

Ramsdale having himself a game

Go Hokies!

He's been immense

Good game - obviously much more fun when you win. Thought Spurs picked it up and threatened a bit in the second half as has been their M.O. Bring that energy to City next match, will you?

Ramsdale was fantastic, Zinchenko is transformative for the possession/attack, and Ødegaard continues his player of the season pace (ok, I guess Haaland will probably win...)

Pains me to say...good performance from Arsenal 🤮

Garbage from the team in Lilywhite. Lloris is a nightmare, Dier Llenglet and Sess were always on the back foot. Son has been off his game this season. Midfield is getting overwhelmed every game. Flashes in the second half but we need 90 minutes of quality football. Currently in shambles right now, and I'm not sure Conte can fix it.

"GO BACK TO YOUR ROOM LITTLE BROTHER, THE CUP IS COMIN’ ON HOME!”

Son's regression from superstar to inconspicuous is obviously a huge deal. Has he been hurt? Does Conte's system not fit his strengths?

Go Hokies!

Age curve - players like him who rely on explosion and quickness fall off the cliff quickly. Same thing that happened to Aubameyang.

Possible injury and World Cup fatigue don't help though.

players whose international teams go far in their association tournaments and play ~90 min every match do lose their legs very quickly. not just aubameyang --- look what happened to alexis sanchez 😵‍💫

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

That's because Sanchez insisted on trying to be a one-man press in every match even if there was no one backing him up 😂 then he always got mad

I friggin' loved him but he insisted on playing every match even if it was a meaningless league cup draw. He gave every ounce of himself and ManU got a discarded wrapper.

Frustrating draw at palace today for united, even worse casemiro gets his 5th yellow of the season to miss the arsenal game. Bit of a crash to earth after a nice run but still feel good about this season.

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

As big a story as Rashford has been, I think Casemiro's play for you guys had been the key to the most recent renaissance. Disappointed you all won't be at full strength for Sunday, should still be a good one. Feels like Arsenal ManU hasn't had stakes like this in a while!

Go Hokies!

I told everyone Casemiro was gonna make a huge difference. He's consistently great, but shines brightest in the biggest moments. I can't count the number of times he made a risky, but clean, tackle to take the ball right off the foot of the greatest players in the world. He brings solidity to the midfield defensively, but he is an eraser as well. He is excellent at covering the mistakes of others.

Was a terrible and unnecessary challenge tbf. What was he thinking? If I was ten Hag I would be pissed at him for that. Forcing him to start Fred and/or McTominay in an important match is not cool.

Anyway, was feeling fairly confident regardless, but now it should be one way traffic for the most part. Without Casemiro, Partey Ødegaard and Zinchenko should absolutely boss the midfield. Really only worried about Rashford at this point.

No Lokonga (bless his heart) to keep passing to the other team. Oy...

Go Hokies!

Meh, it sucks for sure but United will probably play same system as the city game pack in and look for chances on the break. Casemiro in particular is very good at breaking up play and immediately getting the ball forward to start attacks quicker but I would imagine we see a fred mctominay duo with likely front 4 of rashford, weghorst, bruno and eriksen instead of anthony whos struggled as of late. Should still be a good game hopefully but will be a test for united as a unit without casemiro.

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

COYS!!! (🤮)

ACTIVATE AGENTS KULUSEVSKI AND EMERSON

doing the gunners a solid so far

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

I'm just glad that someone else gets to experience the frustration associated with Man City's constant tendency to crush hopes that they'll slip up. I got the Gunners winning the title though, granted there's still half the season to go.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #YNWA

The frustrating thing is I feel they're actually playing pretty poorly (by their standards). I wish we were playing them this weekend, but I'm afraid they'll figure it out in a few weeks by the time they come to the Emirates.

But they've still got a few tricky games between now and then. Wolves looking better since the restart, Spurs again, and Unai Emery's tricky Villains. Time for him to do us a favor.

If this is what it's like to be a Spurs fan, this is terrible.

GDI

Welcome to our painful existence

VB born, class of '14

Juventus are set to be handed a 15 point deduction in Serie A for the way they managed their finances as found by the investigation that was reopened over their capital gains. They can still appeal it looks but this is MASSIVE. Affects Tottenhams Paratici as well he has received a 2.5 year suspension from football activites.

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

Re: Paratici, that's what some are saying but I've seen others refute that. I think it's still unclear.

But Juventus are probably going to have another fire sale after the season.

I'd feel this could get ugly and to me would you want someone who let this kind of financial stuff happen under him running your club? This could cause them to miss out on champions league football and have an even bigger impact possibly as well. Vlahovic will be on everyones radar now.

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

I'm sure Chelsea will buy him.

Also, it's not like it was a secret when they hired him. Maybe he told them he wasnt involved? But it looks like their making him out to be the mastermind so guess that was a lie

Juve have already announced they will appeal curious to see how this goes now.

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

After having to settle for watching lesser leagues since Boxing Day, I cannot possibly express how happy I am to have the Bündesliga back. Y'all can keep your €100 million divas, it's time for hockey on grass.

Don't know why, but I just can't ever seem to get into the Bundesliga. I've watched some matches here and there and they're usually entertaining but there's just something missing for me, idk what it is.

Off the top of my head, possible reasons:

1: Unfamiliarity with clubs. The league is waaaay behind on brand exposure in the US, with the exception of Bayern.

2. Lack of tactical diversity. Almost every club plays some variation of high pressing, attack minded football. This leads to more possession changes and more exciting games, but if you're used to Premier League, it probably just looks sloppy.

3. Limited star power. Because of 50+1, German clubs are not on the same financial footing as clubs from other leagues. There's a lot of young players, and there's a lot of moneyball players, but there's a reason that even on a free, Ronaldo isn't playing in Germany right now.

Could be! I probably know more than most American about the clubs as I do follow the USMNT players who are in Germany. But I thought about it and I think it's 1) I don't have ESPN+ and all the games are on there 2) it's not promoted in the US, like you said 3) it's hard for me to get too invested in anything that isn't Arsenal

Hate to say it, but Mudryk looks class. I'm not surprised as Arteta seems to be very good with talent ID, and he's still clearly got some rough patches to iron out. But he will be very good. It hurts to think about the timeline in which Elneny doesn't get hurt, we don't spend the last few days of the summer window trying and failing to sign Douglas Luiz, and sign Mudryk at the beginning of the season for 40m. I guess the only hope now is that he's so good that even Chelsea can't hang on to him and he twerks his way into a move to Madrid.

Yes, definitely looked the most threatening Chelsea player out there today. Has got to prove he can finish though, which is the obvious weak spot in his game and the number 1 thing fans will turn on a player for

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

EDWARD MFin NKETIAH

Lets GOOOOOOOOOO. ED-DIE ED-DIE ED-DIE

Go Hokies!

Man that's a gut punch for united almost a solid result undone by a flick. Had to mute the game couldn't stand the knob slobbing from Lee Dixon all game fucking abnoxious to have him as color commentary on an arsenal game.

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

I understand that is probably pretty annoying and frustrating but it's pretty funny coming from a United fan considering half the pundits in England are former United players who are always extremely biased.

Gary Neville 🙄

Go Hokies!

Man I am levitating. What a match. Sloppy in the first half but the second half was excellent. Zinchenko is so so good.

I come away thinking that United side is very good though. What a turnaround from the start of this season. They'll be in there thick of it next season for sure. Rashford is in ridiculous form right now.

i said in the part one thread it would come down to how arsenal could perform against the top six, esp away... Wins vs United and Liverpool at home, Chelsea away, and the North London Double. Big games to come vs City

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

I'm so nervous. City double, Liverpool away (not looking too intimidating right now but things can change), and Newcastle away are all going to be tough, tough. Plus the schedule is about to get very congested.

It's all window dressing compared to the City matches. If we split points or can somehow win one of those, we are firmly in the drivers seat. At this point - assuming we stay healthy! - I'm completely fine playing 2nd team in FA Cup and Europa league.

Go Hokies!

Zinchenko is my spirit animal. Love that guys passion.

Rashford 🥵. He looks world class right now. Embodies the turn around there.

Go Hokies!

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

He finally got a couple on frame haha. Happy for him. Annoyed with the Bruno red, hopefully doesn't hurt us too much in the next few games.

There's a Pope in goal, so I feel like we can survive.
Win the Cup and qualify for the CL next year...that's 3 years ahead of expectations.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank