2017/18 Soccer Thread

Fedaykin98 wrote:

Roke, regardless of our recent back and forth, let me be the first to congratulate Canada on drawing with Los Ticos - a very good team, and one of my favorites, especially Bryan Ruiz.

Davies is obviously a phenom, and your keeper made save after save to deny Costa Rica the win.

Thanks a lot Fedaykin. I don't watch non-Canada Gold Cup matches until the knockout stages as some 3rd-place teams advancing make the group stage a little low leverage so other than a few snippets from US fans on Twitter I haven't been following the rest of the tournament.

Things have been going better than I expected. I wish we could have a Pulisic-calibre player (I'd even settle for an Altidore-calibre striker) but Davies has been fun to watch this tourney. I still can't believe Scott Arfield decided to play for Canada. If only Atiba Hutchinson was a few years younger.

I expect things to go wrong, because that's how it works with the men's national team unless coin flips are involved but it's been an enjoyable two games. The team has

Florent Malouda playing for French Guiana is such a typical CONCACAF farce. I don't want them to have all their games forfeited because that would mean knocking off 2 of Davies' goals (he's only 17 back of De Rosario for #1 all-time!) but if it's just the games Malouda's playing in forfeited that gives Honduras a 1-goal advantage over what Canada managed as a result in the goal difference should that become a factor.

Roke wrote:

I don't watch non-Canada Gold Cup matches until the knockout stages as some 3rd-place teams advancing make the group stage a little low leverage

This was also a huge issue with that other sh*tty regional tournament, the Euros.

Spoiler:

No, seriously, it was really annoying, and the larger field watered the event down a ton.

Roke wrote:

Things have been going better than I expected. I wish we could have a Pulisic-calibre player (I'd even settle for an Altidore-calibre striker) but Davies has been fun to watch this tourney.

I'd bet $1000 right now that Altidore hasn't managed three goals in two appearances for the US in several years, regardless of competition. I'm not trying to disrespect one of my country's players, I'm just saying. Davies is very exciting, and I hope you're watching him play in MLS! Or perhaps you support a different club; I don't know where you're from.

Fun fact: Tonight's Gold Cup matches are here in Houston, and three of these Honduran players play their club soccer for the Dynamo, our MLS team. Home game for them!

Fedaykin98 wrote:
Roke wrote:

I don't watch non-Canada Gold Cup matches until the knockout stages as some 3rd-place teams advancing make the group stage a little low leverage

This was also a huge issue with that other sh*tty regional tournament, the Euros.

Spoiler:

No, seriously, it was really annoying, and the larger field watered the event down a ton.

Roke wrote:

Things have been going better than I expected. I wish we could have a Pulisic-calibre player (I'd even settle for an Altidore-calibre striker) but Davies has been fun to watch this tourney.

I'd bet $1000 right now that Altidore hasn't managed three goals in two appearances for the US in several years, regardless of competition. I'm not trying to disrespect one of my country's players, I'm just saying. Davies is very exciting, and I hope you're watching him play in MLS! Or perhaps you support a different club; I don't know where you're from.

Can't say I watch much MLS because I don't really like it. I think too much about it is what's wrong with North American pro sports but taken to another degree. The Clint Dempsey saga where the league made up a new rule to facilitate him going to Seattle was where it went from fun league with a few Canadian teams to kind of evil in my view. But the nearest team to me is Minnesota now, if there were a local team I'd probably still go to a game every once in a while for a nice afternoon out watching some sort of soccer.

It doesn't help that Canadians don't count as domestic players when playing in the US and MLS' entrance into Canada means the idea of a thriving Canadian men's league has horse-bolted. It's complicated though because I think Canadian MLS teams have helped drive interest in the men's national team a fair bit (the women have always been the bigger draw).

I do watch the playoffs because they're really fun (although they should all be two-legged) but the problem with playoffs is they make the regular season pretty much meaningless, much like the group stage of the Euros/Gold Cup. Plus the Voyageurs Cup is way too short to get the recommended dosage of Toronto FC schadenfreude.

There are pluses and minuses of various leagues. The MLS playoff format does make the regular season less important; I'd like to see the Supporter's Shield (best record for the regular season) take on more prestige. On the other hand, a lot of European leagues are dominated by a handful of richer teams, or a couple, or even just one. The MLS is extremely competitive.

I'm not sure there's a perfect league anywhere, but the MLS is entertaining, and definitely improving.

Sooo...apparently Dani Alves is not rejoining Pep, but is instead off to PSG. Might have had something to do with the fact that he was wanting £230k per week...which would have made him City's second highest player.

Based on his performance in the CL final, I'd have signed him for £230k. As a total. Over two years.

Still, at least in Ligue 1 he'll only face 4 tough games a year (Monaco and Marseilles), so he can rest his weary bones on the other weeks.

Being a bit harsh on Ligue 1, especially considering Marseilles finished below Nice (the surprise of last year) and Lyon.

Realized after our discussion last night that it's a touch ironic if CONCACAF's poor handling of the Malouda / French Guiana situation ends up hurting Canada, since a Canadian is now running CONCACAF and is supposed to be getting the region on the right track after being dodgy forever.

Good piece on Sigurdsson's rumorued £50m transfer:
http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/f...

Fedaykin98 wrote:

Realized after our discussion last night that it's a touch ironic if CONCACAF's poor handling of the Malouda / French Guiana situation ends up hurting Canada, since a Canadian is now running CONCACAF and is supposed to be getting the region on the right track after being dodgy forever.

I have no idea how they're going to handle it, but that's CONCACAF for you (even with Mount Vic running it). Of course up until just checking the score I had assumed Honduras had won that game and the "hurting Canada" result would be French Guiana forfeiting and Canada only being hurt by the extra goal or two in goal difference in seeding to see who gets 2nd instead of 3rd in the group. But with the 3rd place team likely advancing I don't think it's a big deal other than it being a complete an utter farce; this isn't a blown offside call in 2007.

Edit: Of course there's a lot of irony in "Canada only needs a result against Honduras to (pretty much) guarantee they get out of the group stage!" The last time that was the case in World Cup Qualifying we lost 8-1.

Montagliani trying to clean up CONCACAF is going to be interesting. The CSA had (and still has) a lot of issues but it didn't have that that sort of problem. I'm not expecting monumental change where suddenly the whole region is run well without money stampeding into Swiss bank accounts but hopefully the governing body itself gets cleaned up.

It's bizarre to me that CONCACAF apparently did nothing to prevent this Malouda mix-up. They announced preliminary rosters months ago! And why would the officials let an ineligible player participate in the actual game? Just weird all around.

Good riddance to Chuck Blazer. While the likes of he and Jack Warner were embezzling millions teams, especially some women's teams, struggled for funding.

In this week's 'bigger things than football' edition, Ajax have today announced that their midfielder, Abdelhak Nouri, who collapsed during a friendly last week, has suffered 'serious and permanent brain damage'. Apparently a lot of his brain has ceased to function, owing to oxygen deprivation.

Let's hope he makes as full a recovery as possible.

I can't believe Bonucci to Milan is happening. Especially for about 15-20m less than Walker to Man City. Juve handing the title to Milan?

Walker to Man City for £50m seems like good business for both clubs. City get a proven player in a position they need and Spurs get some money they can reinvest in a fullback and part of another position too when they desperately need some quality depth. My only question mark is I don't think Walker's as good as the fullbacks Pep has usually managed in his top-division career but that's a massive upgrade over Sagna and post-decline Zabaleta.

davet010 wrote:

In this week's 'bigger things than football' edition, Ajax have today announced that their midfielder, Abdelhak Nouri, who collapsed during a friendly last week, has suffered 'serious and permanent brain damage'. Apparently a lot of his brain has ceased to function, owing to oxygen deprivation.

Let's hope he makes as full a recovery as possible.

Maybe it's just easier to be aware of it but it seems players collapsing due to heart problems is more common in recent years.

Clusks wrote:

I can't believe Bonucci to Milan is happening. Especially for about 15-20m less than Walker to Man City. Juve handing the title to Milan?

I'm just hoping for a title race of some sort. Milan's transfer business seems pretty smart this window, hopefully with their finances sorted out they can be decent again. Ordinarily I'd worry about splashing cash on a 30 year-old but old player can last longer in Serie A and Bonucci's so good I think it'll be worth it for Milan.

I guess 50m is good for Walker because we are now in hyper silly inflation.

Counts as HG is what? 15m of that transfer?

Just shows the disaster of development has been. Instead of having a serviceable guy coming through the academy they just paid 50m for Kyle Walker. Sorry that's 53? He's now the worlds most expensive defender.... He's 27 also?

There's just something right about AC Milan being a powerhouse. I'm so glad the dark days of your big signing being Adel Taraabt on loan are over.

jowner wrote:

I guess 50m is good for Walker because we are now in hyper silly inflation.

Counts as HG is what? 15m of that transfer?

Just shows the disaster of development has been. Instead of having a serviceable guy coming through the academy they just paid 50m for Kyle Walker. Sorry that's 53? He's now the worlds most expensive defender.... He's 27 also?

I'd pay 50m for him myself if the alternative was having Dani f*cking Alves.

Oh, and I'm not sure that the development is a disaster when City's youth teams are regularly winning titles at u-14 to u-19 levels, and the u-21s keep reaching the Youth Cup final (where Chelsea keep beating us). Just takes a while to get people through the levels. City's youth teams are so strong, in fact, that United will not play against them in any age group - after they met at u-17 level I think it was and City won. 9-0.

The thing about youth players breaking through is for a team as good in the top tier (your Bayern Munichs, Real Madrids and the like) guys have to be really, really good to break into the first XI from the youth sides. Taking a quick look at Bayern Munich they have two guys who came up through the youth ranks and then stayed at the club (ecluding loans) - Alaba and Muller.

I wouldn't put Man City on that tier yet but it's the same thing. You aren't going to get a starter-calibre player out of your youth team more than every 4 years or so if you're very good at developing youth.

Roke wrote:

Good riddance to Chuck Blazer. While the likes of he and Jack Warner were embezzling millions teams, especially some women's teams, struggled for funding.

Friends, 'Murcans, countrymen, lend me your ears! I come bury Chuck Blazer, not to praise him!

http://www.bigsoccer.com/threads/chu...

Ole Chuck was a weird figure in US Soccer. On the one hand, yes apartment for cats, etc., etc. On the other hand I have to agree with Bill Archer in that he's almost single-handedly responsible for soccer in this country being a semi-major sport, rather than something that shows up on ESPN8 in between lacrosse and water polo.

Jack Warner was a corrupt POS who was only in the business for what he could get out of it. Blazer was a little different, more like one of the old machine politicians from the early twentieth century. He was going to get his cut, but he was also going to take care of his people at the same time. I'm going to think of him with a minor degree of affection, sort of like an old 90's rapper who went off the rails.

Also, there have been some small strides towards making Canadians more integrated into the US system:
http://www.goal.com/en-us/news/1110/...

Will there be a separate thread for fantasy futbol this year? I haven't played in past years but would be interested to give it a go if y'all are doing it again.

bigred wrote:

Will there be a separate thread for fantasy futbol this year? I haven't played in past years but would be interested to give it a go if y'all are doing it again.

We usually just do it all within this thread, I believe, it's started now, so whoever runs the league can start it up?

11+ sports channels in Canada and not one is broadcasting the Euros this summer. But hey, I can watch some men's sponsored chainsaw competition of some sort.

I guess at least UEFA puts it on Youtube.

Edit:

God, soccer is so much nicer to watch when there's only one commentator. They leave periods of silence, the commentary flows with the game, and there's much, much less of the inane "just put 2 up top and pump it into the box" or "she needs to show more desire, take a gamble, and get on the end of it" nonsense.

Time to think long and hard about my fantasy squad before just giving up and picking almost at random.

And in response to almost no requests...

GWJ Premiership 17 Fantasy Football is here !!

Usual website (fantasy.premierleague.com), select your team, then enter a league.

Submit the following code - 852100-205580

And you'll be in.

PSG apparently sniffing around Neymar's release clause? Would be fun to see Barcelona screw up £200m in transfers if that happens.

I like Morata for Chelsea. He's been good by the numbers for years now but him never actually starting regularly is a bit of a worry. Lukaku obviously would have been less risky (which is why he was plan A) but I think Morata should be good. Maybe Batshuayi will actually get some playing time this year too.

Canada loses to Jamaica 2-1. Central Defenders couldn't deal with the pace and skill of Jamaica's forwards, the midfield provided no protection for most of the match and the fullbacks were too far forward to cover. Hoilett's goal was pretty and the team seems a lot better when Cyle Larin isn't being useless on the pitch (off the pitch he's obviously worse than useless).

davet010 wrote:

And in response to almost no requests...

GWJ Premiership 17 Fantasy Football is here !!

Usual website (fantasy.premierleague.com), select your team, then enter a league.

Submit the following code - 852100-205580

And you'll be in.

RIP Dancin' Pardiola. I'll miss that team name but since he's unemployed right now going with it didn't seem right.

Best I can come up this year is Blazer's Cat Condos which is kind of lame, but oh well.

I've moved away from the City-related names (I realise that Pep has over-trumped my usual sarcasm, by playing Mangala at LB in last night's friendly agains the Vermin), so welcome Athletico Mince to the league.

Neymar moving would be spicy. Would probably trigger Coutinho to Baraca

I think my biggest fear of Arsenal losing Sanchez is we wont get the price for what hes worth relative to the rest of these silly season transfer.

If Lukaku is 70m and Morata is 70m and Coutinho ends up going for 80m whats Sanchez worth then?

jowner wrote:

Neymar moving would be spicy. Would probably trigger Coutinho to Baraca

I think my biggest fear of Arsenal losing Sanchez is we wont get the price for what hes worth relative to the rest of these silly season transfer.

If Lukaku is 70m and Morata is 70m and Coutinho ends up going for 80m whats Sanchez worth then?

No more than £50m since he only has a year left on his contract.

Firmino not being listed as a midfielder anymore is really going to put a damper on my fantasy team.

Hmm...do I add Morata to my fantasy team ?

Danilo signed for City today...I'm guessing he's not going to be playing RB. Mendy should sign in the week, but I'd still want Laporte. It seems however that Pep has an aversion to going back for players he's already bid for once (such as Bonucci), and by all accounts Laporte agreed a deal last summer then pulled out, so I'm thinking that won't be happening.

The Manchester (United) Evening News was making much hay out of City's loss to the Vermin on Friday. Forgetting perhaps that United had been in the States for a week and already had 2 games, whereas City had only landed in the US on Wed and played no matches as yet. Still, it keeps the simpletons happy.