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Schalke 1-2 Bayern Munich – visitors triumph despite early dismissal

April 5, 2010
Schalke 1-2 Bayern Munich – visitors triumph despite early dismissal

A game as tight, tense and nervy as you’d expect from a 1st v 2nd clash – Bayern emerge from it on top, despite playing for 50 minutes with ten men after having Hamit Altintop dismissed.
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Posted in Germany | 7 Comments »

Manchester United 1-2 Chelsea: Ancelotti gets it right with his strikers

April 3, 2010
Manchester United 1-2 Chelsea: Ancelotti gets it right with his strikers

A tight game that was won the better side. United looked tired after their midweek game in Munich – Chelsea were fresher, brighter and created more goalscoring opportunities. They are now in the driving seat.
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Posted in England | 29 Comments »

Roma 2-1 Inter: A narrow victory that could turn out to be crucial

March 27, 2010
Roma 2-1 Inter: A narrow victory that could turn out to be crucial

There’s a case for saying that was the first huge game of the season. Title favourites Inter against the side who look most likely to topple them, and Jose Mourinho up against Claudio Ranieri – the man he replaced at Chelsea almost six years ago.
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Posted in Italy | 18 Comments »

Manchester United 2-1 Liverpool: a contest about the small details

March 21, 2010
Manchester United 2-1 Liverpool: a contest about the small details

No major tactical surprises here, and no surprise outcome either. Ferguson’s default line-up for these ‘big’ games is a flexible 4-5-1 shape (which means no Dimitar Berbatov) whilst Benitez was always going to go with Lucas ahead of Alberto Aquilani for a more solid midfield away at Old Trafford.
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Posted in England | 34 Comments »

Arsenal 2-0 West Ham: Zola brave for going with a 4-4-2, but foolish for sticking to it

March 20, 2010
Arsenal 2-0 West Ham: Zola brave for going with a 4-4-2, but foolish for sticking to it

You have to admire Gianfranco Zola for going to the Emirates and playing a 4-4-2. Without his two best players, Scott Parker and Carlton Cole, it would have been tempting to do what most sides do when they play Arsenal away – go 4-5-1 and try and hit Arsenal on the counter.
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Posted in England | 6 Comments »