2021/22 Soccer Thread: It's Euro 2020 until it becomes 2021

What's Slovenian for "Lads, it's Spurs"?

Status report by Conte.
Welcome, Conte. Now the real work starts.

slazev wrote:

Status report by Conte.
Welcome, Conte. Now the real work starts.

Hopefully he can turn things around. I like Spurs.

One of Portugal or Italy won't be at the 2022 World Cup because of how the draw in the last bit of UEFA's World Cup Qualifying went. I say why not both?

And CONCACAF lucked out with the draw for the Intercontinental playoffs, avoiding CONMEBOL and the AFC by getting drawn against Oceania. Not a done deal by any means, but I'd prefer to face New Zealand than any of the teams likely to end up in the playoffs from the other two confederations.

Portugal get Turkey also first.

What a disaster. Sometimes it takes some pain before you do what is necessary. In this case it's the coach getting the boot first and Ronaldo retiring second.

IMAGE(https://editorial.uefa.com/resources/026f-13d0e1227fcf-858116919a00-1000/format/wide1/uefa-euro-qualifiers-play-offs-all-16x9--be003e82-1be8-4f13-af87-f66caf0226a4_20211126181448.jpeg?imwidth=2048)

IMAGE(https://media2.giphy.com/media/kaBU6pgv0OsPHz2yxy/giphy.gif?cid=790b7611de32a00ed73d32fbc7bcd5b49587c23e6e88ebca&rid=giphy.gif&ct=g)

Roke wrote:

Hopefully he can turn things around. I like Spurs.

IMAGE(https://c.tenor.com/ocomHOmw7L4AAAAC/i-like-this-guy-i-like-him.gif)

Roke wrote:

One of Portugal or Italy won't be at the 2022 World Cup because of how the draw in the last bit of UEFA's World Cup Qualifying went. I say why not both?

IMAGE(https://i.imgflip.com/1brgty.gif)

I think Rangnick has the potential be a very good hire, the only question is if he'll be able to stamp his style on this team, or if they are just going to reject his particular style.

Prederick wrote:

I think Rangnick has the potential be a very good hire, the only question is if he'll be able to stamp his style on this team, or if they are just going to reject his particular style.

his problem, for a high press team, is that United don't have that many defensive players suited to that style. I'm sure he can get a good, effective attack going, I suspect the defence is going to struggle.

Well I'm sold.

Brighton-Leeds was apparently a true masterclass in "how not to score."

Game in Portugal abandoned

Because of Covid Belenenses started the game with nine players, including two Goalkeepers and by the start of the second half were down to six because of injury, causing the game to be called off.

Just a note. It's not really Belenenses, it's B-SAD. They don't have the rights to use the name. The real Belenenses is in a lower division.

Everything about that was bizarre. They decided to go ahead even with all the absentees. Benfica didn't say anything. Then apparently right when the match was going to start B-SAD asked to delay the match, Benfica then replied it was too late to back out. How could this go ahead? For health safety, at the very least.

Meanwhile, in Italy:

Juventus say they are cooperating with investigators after Italian financial police searched the Serie A club's offices seeking information about player trading between 2019 and 2021.

The Turin club has said chairman Andrea Agnelli, vice-chairman and former player Pavel Nedved, and chief financial officer Stefano Cerrato, along with former Juve officials, are under investigation.

Juventus, Italy's most successful club with 36 league titles, say they believe the club has "acted in compliance" with the laws.

Turin prosecutor Anna Maria Loreto said in a statement released late on Friday that the investigation is looking into whether senior officials at Juventus gave false communications to investors and issued invoices for non-existent transactions.

"Several transfer operations of professional players and the services rendered by some agents involved in the related intermediation are under consideration," Loreto said.

slazev wrote:

Just a note. It's not really Belenenses, it's B-SAD. They don't have the rights to use the name. The real Belenenses is in a lower division.

Everything about that was bizarre. They decided to go ahead even with all the absentees. Benfica didn't say anything. Then apparently right when the match was going to start B-SAD asked to delay the match, Benfica then replied it was too late to back out. How could this go ahead? For health safety, at the very least.

Benfica are blaming the Portuguese FA and & Health Directorship and saying they were "forced" to play.

Somehow... I don't believe them.

Continuing the "corruption in football" theme:

Croatia’s soccer superstar, the former boss ... and a sport dogged by scandal

From his hideaway in Bosnia-Herzegovina, to where he dramatically fled on the eve of his conviction for fraud three years ago, Zdravko Mamić, once the most powerful figure in Croatian football, turned to his Facebook account last Thursday to rub salt in some wounds.

“Netflix: let Narcos go, come here,” he wrote in reference to the hit TV show about the wholesale corruption of Mexico and Colombia by narcotic gangs. “For the last weeks and months I have been quietly working on judicial reform, and today you can see another one in a series of results of what we started together.”

Mamić, a former executive director of Dinamo Zagreb and vice-president of the Croatian Football Federation, had been referring to the breaking news of the arrest of judge Zvonko Vekić and close friend Nataša Sekulić, an accountant, on charges of money laundering.

Vekić had been one of three judges in the eastern Croatian city of Osijek who Mamić had accused of taking a total of €370,000 in bribes back in March. Vekić was alleged to have accepted Mamić’s money, and even a pair of Louis Vuitton shoes during a New Year break in Dubai, in return for dropping a range of fraud and tax-evasion charges against him and his brother, Zoran, a former Croatia international and star manager of the country’s most successful club, Dinamo Zagreb, relating to the embezzlement of club funds through unlawful cuts of transfer fees.

Vekić denies the allegations, including accepting the shoes, and claims he was in Dubai to see his brother-in-law. Sekulić, to whom Mamić claims he handed thousands of euros for shopping trips, is yet to comment.

Also, I was watching this weekend's highlights and holy sh*t, it snowed like that in England this weekend?

Like, I know England gets snow, but I didn't think it'd snow-snow. Leicester/Watford was a clean, green pitch at kickoff and Saskatchewan by full time!

EDIT: Well, this is new.

Prederick wrote:

Also, I was watching this weekend's highlights and holy sh*t, it snowed like that in England this weekend?

Like, I know England gets snow, but I didn't think it'd snow-snow. Leicester/Watford was a clean, green pitch at kickoff and Saskatchewan by full time!

EDIT: Well, this is new.

We had a major storm here in the UK over the weekend - well, Scotland and the Northern parts of England did. 100mph winds, a lot of damage and trees blown over, and it drew down a lot of artic air which caused all the snow. It’s not normal but it’s not unheard of either.

You won’t have heard of it as it didn’t impact London, which is really the only time major weather events reach the national news channels.

Ah, I still remember (not fondly at all, quite the opposite) airports being closed in London due to the snow. I think Gatwick was always the first to fall. Goodness gracious, it's already been 10 years.

It turns out 13 of those Portuguese football players who came down with Covid have the new Omicron variant. Accounting for 100% of the Omicron cases currently identified in the country.

"Defender Cafu Phete, one of those to have tested positive, recently returned from South Africa having played for his country during the international break."

Apparently the number of players and staff they now have isolating is 44.

Messi with the Marta Memorial Ballon D'Or. His Barcelona play merited it and Argentina did win the Copa America but it's not like he's done anything for PSG. Probably should have gone to Lewandowski.

Pleasantly surprised Christine Sinclair didn't get a lifetime achievement Footballer of the Year award. Half expected that to happen given Canada won Gold at the Olympics but nice to see it go to a more deserving player this year.

Mr Bismarck wrote:

It turns out 13 of those Portuguese football players who came down with Covid have the new Omicron variant. Accounting for 100% of the Omicron cases currently identified in the country.

"Defender Cafu Phete, one of those to have tested positive, recently returned from South Africa having played for his country during the international break."

Apparently the number of players and staff they now have isolating is 44.

Oof. Maybe we'll get lucky and Omicron is more contagious but less harmful.

Messi wins Ballon D'or because he's Messi. I can think of several players who've had better seasons than Messi last year to be honest.

You can tell they all know it too because they created the special runner up "Striker of the Year" award - more or less on the spot - for Lewandowski, who should have won it.

Everyone is pretty much vaccinated, so even with number of infections rising, people are mostly protected from the more dangerous effects. Now they've started applying the 3rd dose.

Things we've learned tonight:

Neither Newcastle or Norwich are good enough to be in the Premier League

Woman's football is a little odd - England put 20 goals past Latvia tonight in an international. I'm really not sure that helps anyone to be honest.

Pep Guardiola is just a a little spoiled

Leeds win an injury time, which is very useful considering our christmas period is like Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester City and Arsenal. Next up is Brentford so also be very useful to get something from that for sure.