Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Confederations Consolation

This will be a summer without major football tournaments, and so the FIFA Confederations Cup is a poor replacement. Nobody seems to really want to win it, as the modern myth that the winner will not be world champion, has really caught on among superstitious footballers. Rather, the biggest sides mostly want to try out some new players, so matches are bound to be a bit dry. Include to this the absence of some of the legends: nobody is saying it out loud, but the only former world champion present in Russia is Germany. The absence of Brazil, Spain, Argentina or Italy just takes some of the spice away.
All this said, I have been watching some matches with interest, only to confirm my cynicism about the tournament: Chile looked good against a dangerous Cameroun, but only seemed to seal victory when Alexis Sanchez finally came on. Portugal looked solid with Cristiano Ronaldo, and are perhaps the team that has most seemed eager to win the tournament. The hosts from Russia have put in decent displays, but are mostly worth seeing because of their fans. Mexico and New Zealand have been poor and Germany won their obligatory victory over Australia 2-3 by experimenting somewhat with some new players.
I hope it gets more interesting, or there will not be much consolation in this football-hungry summer.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

England World Champion!

Before today's u-20 World Cup final in South Corea we knew we would have a new World Champion. Neither Venezuela or England had ever been in a final at youth level. Venezuela had never been in a final at all, showing the incredible strides Venezuelan football has made in the last 15 years, while England had not been in any final since their legendary World Cup triumph in 1966.
So whoever won it would be special. Both teams had reached the final unbeaten, with Venezuela having a strong scoring and attacking record.
The Venezuelan side nevertheless seemed more stricken by the occasion than the English lads, who dominated first half, also taking the lead on a goal by Dominic Calvert-Lewin from Everton. This was in the face of a poor Venezuelan defense, who was saved by goalkeeper Wuilker Farinez.
In the second half the Venezuelans put more pressure on an English side that also seemed to grow more nervous, and there were many mistakes as the match progressed. It was more intense than beautiful, and only English goalkeeper Freddie Woodman seemed cool when he saved a penalty kick from Adalberto Penarando (the big Venezuelan star was a frustrating sight today), and became the best goalkeeper of the tournament and a hero for England.
England won 1-0 and are World Champions.
I was supporting Venezuela, but it was a well-deserved victory for England, who should take advantage of having such a talented pool of players. In the meantime, Venezuela made it to a final, and lost it. They have a base of players to fight for their first World Cup, perhaps in 2022, but I would not count on it.

Sunday, June 04, 2017

Masters of the Universe

I watched the Champions League final between Real Madrid and Juventus  in a bar called Lila Brown in Monrovia. Not many people and a pleasant atmosphere, but as Liberia is entering rainy season the satellite signal was unfortunately quite bad, and it was difficult to enjoy the game in full.

After the first half the score was 1-1, and it still looked as the match could go to either side: Juventus had dominated the start of the first half until Ronaldo's excellent counter-attacking goal. Mandzukic made the outstanding equalizer, and with such a goal one could justifiably expect anything to happen.
But Real Madrid turned up the volume in the second half, and won 4-1 against a Juventus side that proved broken after only letting three goals in during the entire Champions League season. Cuadrado's unfair red card against Ramos' disgraceful acting did not make any difference, except the feeling of Real Madrid players being allowed to do whatever they want with impunity. Sergio Ramos does not deserve to be called a champion.

Despite Ramos, this is Real Madrid's 12th title, and the first time the Champions League is won twice in a row. It seals the club as the best in the universe. They have been very solid during the season, all thanks to the genius of Zinedine Zidane, who must surely enter the annals of one of the greatest managers of all time, alongside that of one of the greatest players of all time.
I truly admire Zinedine Zidane. What a pity he is with Real Madrid....

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Champion Wenger

Lately Arsenal fans have been trashing their manager over 20 years, Arsene Wenger. For yet another year Arsenal did not win the Premier League title, and for the first time in 19 years they did not qualify for the Champions League.
Not matter what, today Arsenal won the FA Cup, 2-1 in the final against the PL champions from Chelsea. This is the 7th FA Cup title under Arsene Wenger, now the most-winning FA Cup manager ever.
So is this a team with no titles???
I really do not understand Arsenal fans' criticism of Wenger, as their mediocre club could never have done better. Has Manchester City done better with all their money and fancy managers????
Arsene Wenger is the best manager that Arsenal will ever have, and they should be thankful about this latest title. Because if Wenger leaves, Arsenal will be waiting many many years before they win any other title.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Europa League Final

Tonight I watched the Europa League Final in a bar in Monrovia, amid massive rain, which made it difficult to listen to the commentary, but at least it was possible to watch the match and drink beer.
Manchester United were not likeable as they played on their far superior experience against an Ajax Amsterdam side of charming youngsters who were surely up past their bedtime. Ajax hardly had a shot on goal as their naive attack crashed against Mourinho's defensive wall, in what was a bit of a disappointing final, as it never seemed Manchester United's victory was in any doubt whatsoever.
Manchester United are now in the Champions League next season why they, and Mourinho, can add another European title to their stack.
And in Monrovia, the rain continued.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Early and coming Champions

Seasons are ending all around Europe, and we can already see some of the titles being handed out!
With a 0-1 victory over West Bromwich Albions Chelsea mathematically became champions of the Premier League with still three games to go before the end of the season. This cements Chelsea's amazing season, which few saw coming I think: a disastrous last season which led to the hiring of Antonio Conte as manager, and he has stabilized the team, that plays excellent football. One has to wonder whether the absence of European football may as well have been an advantage, as they were able to focus entirely on the Premier League.
In Germany Bayern Munich has won the Bundesliga again and as expected by many. That said, it is a disappointing season, as they did not win the DFB Cup and were eliminated in the Champions League. Bayern Munich is set to go through changes next season, so it remains to be seen how they will do.
In Italy Juventus is only a victory away from taking the title, while in France Monaco are on the brink of taking a title that seems to have belonged in Paris since 2013, and this also cements their extraordinary season where they won themselves a lot of friends in the CL!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

The finalists

Although Atletico Madrid gave Real Madrid a scare (and fans hope for a good game) in the first quarter of last nights' Champions League semifinal second leg, the result was never in doubt: although behind 2-0, when Real Madrid settled into the match they showed their quality and after Isco's goal, their place in the final was never really in doubt. And for any major threats, Keylor Navas was solid in goal.
Real Madrid can go all the way, although they will have to play their best against a Juventus side that did not need to make much of an effort to win 2-1 against Monaco at home. Juventus will be playing their ninth final against Real Madrid's record 15th. But Real Madrid have only lost three finals, while Juventus has been defeated 6 of their eight finals, their last victory coming in 1996 against Ajax Amsterdam (after they had earlier eliminated Real Madrid in the quarterfinals). Real Madrid are the defending champions and could become the first team to re-take the title in the 21st Century (and since the inception of the Champions League format).
No matter what happens, this Champions League season has been one of the best ever, and both of these teams deserve to be in a final that is set to be match of the year in 2018! History will be made!
Countdown for June 3rd has started!

Thursday, May 04, 2017

Juventus to challenge the title

It all points to it being a fantastic Champions League final. After Real Madrid made fun of Atletico Madrid with a great display, Juventus showed at least as much quality when defeating AS Monaco 0-2 in Monaco. Monaco are a young side that has won many friends in the tournament and for its young players there are surely great years ahead. But Juventus' combination of quality and experience were simply too much for Monaco, who may have attacked optimistically and with skills, but were punished by any mistake to such as degree that Gonzalo Higuain ended up scoring both Juventus goals! (always poor in finals, one can almost not expect him to do anything there if they reach that far).
If any team can defeat Real Madrid it is Juventus. If any team can defeat Juventus, it is Real Madrid.
Of course, there is still a second leg for both semi-finals, but if the final is not Real Madrid-Juventus it will be an enormous surprise!

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Real Madrid still champion

It is not with delight that I say that a team that I dislike is the best, but after seeing Real Madrid take out Atletico Madrid 3-0, on three goals by a Cristiano Ronaldo on fire, I can barely see that any team can threaten them from retaking the Champions League title.
Of course a lot of things can happen in football, and both Monaco and Juventus are quality sides, but last nights' display must be among the best I have seen from Real Madrid. And it was not just against any side: it was against Atletico Madrid, a side that has had a good take on Real Madrid, and is notoriously organized and difficult to play against. But Real Madrid made it look easy.
One thing I could not help but think about is Zinedine Zidane: all attention goes to so many other managers in Europe, but no attention seems to be going to Zidane's managing qualities, which are proving to be truly outstanding as he is managing one of the most difficult clubs in the world!
If they end up taking the title again, Zinedine Zidane should be the stars above them all in Real Madrid!

Monday, May 01, 2017

Brøndby-Sønderjyske

It had been long time since I had watched a Danish league match until yesterday when I watched Brøndby play Søderjyske in the Danish league. None have a chance of winning the league, although it seems Brøndby is set for second spot. That said, neither side seemed that committed to the match: both teams are organized and physically strong, but having not watched Danish football for a while I could not help but notice the general lack of technical skills: very slow ball control and poor kicking technique was what characterized the match, in particular among the two goalkeepers, where Søderjyske goalie Lukas Fernandes cost a goal when he totally misplaced a kick. Frederik Rønnow from Sønderjyske, a player I had never heard about, will nevertheless always be remembered when I saw him make one of the biggest misses ever: in a totally open goal, goalkeeper away, he managed to miss the goal....
The match ended 1-1.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Villain and Hero

Last week, when Barcelona defeated Real Madrid 2-3 in Madrid, Marcelo was unfairly criticized for not having made a free kick on Sergi Roberto when the defender rushed through the center in the last seconds of the match. The ball ended with Messi who scored the winning goal.
A player should not be criticized for not making a foul, although in football terms I think any professional or fan understands that this is part of the game too.
The defeat left the Spanish league title more open, with Barcelona nearly catching up to Real Madrid, who last night was facing Valencia, a team that has not been doing well this season, but who are notably known  for being specialists in giving Real Madrid a hard time. And it seemed to be another flop when Dani Parejo equalized to 1-1 ten minutes before time. Previously Ronaldo had brought Real Madrid ahead, but he had also missed penalty against Diego Alves (who has saved the last 3 of 4 penalties from Ronaldo). 1-1 would have left the hunt for the league title completely open, but in came Marcelo, who scored the winning goal for Real Madrid with a sure right foot-shot.
Real Madrid celebrated as if they had won the league, and I also think that goal will give the title to Real Madrid.
Then everyone will have forgotten that Marcelo did the right thing in not stopping Sergi Roberto, by fixing it with a great goal that gave Real Madrid the title!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Forca Juve

I was delighted, sitting in Fuzion, in Monrovia, watching a great Juventus side tie 0-0 in Barcelona to make it to the CL semifinals. As the match wore on one supported Juve more against a Barca side that just seems that they are entitled to win and when things are against them they cannot handle it, least of all Neymar.
There is a difference between a great fighter and a bad loser, and Neymar is not the former.
But with this we have four teams in the semifinals, two Spanish, one French and one Italian: Ream Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Monaco and Juventus.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Feeling sorry for mighty Bayern

It is not often one feels sorry for one of the biggest teams in Europe, but tonight I felt sorry for Bayern Munich as they were eliminated from the Champions League by Real Madrid.
Don't get me wrong: despite my dislike for Real Madrid they are a truly great side, but that is why such a victory as that tonight leaves a sour taste in ones mouth.
Bayern Munich played well; much better than in their hapless first match at home, and when they went ahead 0-1 on a penalty by Lewandowski, one had the feeling that they could win the match.
There are a lot of bad referees out there, but fortunately, they are seldom defining for who wins the match (despite what many unnamed managers in England may say...), but tonight there can be no doubt that the refereeing was defining for the result. First Arturo Vidal's non-existant second yellow card (and this is not to say that he was moving close to second yellow), when Casemiro should have had a red card at least as much, and the secondly Cristiano Ronaldo's equalizing 2-2 goal, which was so clearly off side that one either has to question the skills, eyesight or worse of the linesman.
In the end the Germans fell apart and lost 4-2, but the match had been decided at the 2-2 goal and the red card already.

Real Madrid, a great team, are in the semifinal to defend their title, followed by their local rivals Atletico Madrid, who had to fight hard to defeat a Leicester side who will not be in the Champions League again in the foreseeable future, if ever.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Argentina without Messi

South American World Cup qualifiers continue to be the most nerve-wrecking and closely fought contest in the world: every team can defeat anyone, and as the end nears seven out of ten teams can qualify, with one more outsider. Only Brazil, who started weakly but has risen over the last year, seem to be certain of going to Russia after their recent away victory in Montevideo against Uruguay, who remain in second spot.
But Argentina tonight lost away 2-0 to Bolivia, and will struggle to keep their closest competitors from Chile, Colombia and Ecuador away. Even Paraguay could beat them to the World Cup spot, and Argentina could risk a play-off match, or worse, not qualify!
Except for fans of Argentina (including myself) the worst consequence of Argentina not qualifying would likely be a World Cup without Lionel Messi. Let us face it; besides Messi, and perhaps DiMaria (and not counting an ageing and 'wasted-in-Barcelona' Mascherano), Argentina only has mediocre players who are not up to the task without Messi. Tonight's defeat to Bolivia was a case in point: after having defeated the South American champions of Chile last week (with Messi scoring the winning goal) Messi stupidly insulted the referee and got himself a four-match suspension. Argentina without Messi was a mediocre side unable to break the home side in the altitude of La Paz. With only four matches left, Messi will be available for only one. And they are not easy matches: Uruguay away, and Venezuela and Peru at home. Argentina's best hope seems to be that the other teams take points from one another and that they do not lose too many points in these coming three matches.
It is not looking good for a World Cup with Argentina and Messi!

Saturday, March 18, 2017

The two teams nobody wanted to face

Atletico Madrid and Leicester were arguably the two teams everyone wanted to avoid in the quarterfinals of the Champions League. Atletico Madrid are a passionate, skilled and disciplined side that has proven to have one of the best defenses in the world combined with an unforgiving attacking force. Leicester on the other hand, seem to be a team that is set to continue surprising; the best team in the world when underestimated.
But all teams avoided them as both of these sides will be facing one another in the quarterfinals. An interesting anecdote is that two of the previous three times Leicester was in Europe, they were eliminated by Atletico Madrid (1961 and 1997). So this may be the time of redemption for Leicester.

The quarterfinals are as follows:
  • Atletico Madrid-Leicester
  • Borussia Dortmund-Monaco
  • Juventus-FC Barcelona
  • Bayern Munich-Real Madrid
All will be incredible matches. Juventus-Barcelona a repeat of the 2015 final. Dortmund-Monaco two teams playing attacking football. Bayern Munich-Real Madrid will see two of the best teams ever having played the tournament.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Leicester among the eight best in Europe

Surely Leicester are having a bad season in the Premier League, where rather than defending their title, they are almost fighting to avoid relegation. This is what led to a very unlikeable firing of Claudio Ranieri as manager, but frankly, since the charming Italian's exit, things seem to have improved.  I was never a fan of Mr. Ranieri, but he did achieve something extraordinary with Leicester, but it seems it was time to move on...
Last night Leicester eliminated the highly rated Europa League champions of Sevilla from the Champions League, making it to the quarterfinals. Despite a lucky 1-2 defeat in Spain, Leceister was all but lucky in their 2-0 victory playing an intelligent and disciplined match where they looked more like the team that took everyone with storm last season.
Leicester are not among the 8 best in Europe, and will be facing some giant in the next round. But do not discount them: Leicester has surprised before!

Sunday, March 12, 2017

The sad comeback

Last Wednesday I found myself in a bar in the city of Danane, in Cote d'Ivoire, at first only half-watching the Barcelona-Paris St. Germain match, but getting caught by Barcelona's incredible last 3 minute comeback to eliminate the Parisians.
Along with most people in the bar, I was not happy. In Cote d'Ivoire they also supported Paris St. Germain. And whom I felt most sorry for were the Paris St. Germain fans; I know how it feels when your team loses, but I do not know how it feels when you come from the heights of happiness to the depths of sadness. I felt much more sad for them than for the Barcelona fans who just ten minutes before would have trashed their team out of the stadium.
In the end Barcelona did something incredible, but not elegant. Their attitude will and should annoy any decent football fans, and the admiration for Luis Suarez' skills are just frustrated by the ugliness of his antics.
But I cannot blame them: this is part of football, as much as I dislike it, and had it been my team, I would have been celebrating it like Barcelona fans did.
All great teams know how to stretch the rules, and Barcelona were just better at it than Paris St. Germain, which just makes it more sad for the great Parisians!!!
Barcelona is in the next round, but at least in Danane, as in Paris, it was not celebrated!

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

A match to remember

No matter what happens in the rest of this seasons' Champions League we will remember last night's match between Manchester City and Monaco. 5-3 and a festival of goals and drama, the only bad thing that can be said is that at times defenses looked very shaky. But that has to be seen against the background of strikers who all seemed to have a good day: Radamel Falcao looked as a young man from his pre-Manchester United days (despite him missing a penalty against Willy Caballero, who may be better than hapless Claudio Bravo, but still had a difficult match alongside his defense) and Sergio Aguero had one of those rare days when he was world class in an important match.  But most impressive was the young Leroy Sane, who is really proving to be the best transfer this season.
Monaco impressed because of their attacking prowess and positive attitude, and Radamel Falcao's penalty miss when they were up 0-2 may have cost them the match, despite them eventually going up 1-3 before Manchester City's memorable comeback. Manchester City showed an amazing character which should give them confidence for better results.
The return match in Monaco will be a must-see for every football fans: Monaco must attack, which they have shown they can, against a City side that has shown they cannot defend, so must attack. Do not miss it!

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Valentines Day in Paris

Everyone, except FC Barcelona, seems to know that Paris Saint Germain has a quality team who under Unai Emery has learned to prepare for a match. And Barcelona seemed stunned the entire match as they proved inferior to PSG in every regard. It would have been nice to have a "Manita" to rub in Barcelona's faces, but in the end it was "only" 4-0, a result FC Barcelona can be most thankful about.
First about PSG: They seem to be the team of the future. Young players like Adrien Rabiot and Julian Draxler excelled, while "older" faces such as Marco Verrati, Angel Di Maria and Edison Cavani totally outshined Messi, Neymar and Suarez. Di Maria and Cavani both scored goals full of love on what was also their birthday.
The main reason for the result was a splendid PSG side who could go all the way if they play like today! But one must also mentioned FCB: the fact that they played such a horrible match can only be blamed on the manager, Luis Enrique. Do not mind the demotivated side, but some choices were simply awkward; Andre Gomes instead of Rakitic made them lose the midfield and Sergi Roberto was so bad as right-back (admittedly not his natural position) that it was like handing Draxler a highway to run on.
Barcelona are all but out of the Champions League and with meager chances of winning the Liga title, they may take a consolation with the Copa del Rey, but the question is whether this is enough for Luis Enrique to maintain his job.

Monday, February 06, 2017

Stuck in no-mans land when Cameroun won

I was unable to watch the Final of the Africa Cup of Nations because I was stuck in a second-rate football country because their lousy national airline could not get me off the ground to go to beautiful Liberia. And how is it that in this country there was nowhere to watch the final?
In any case, it was only great that Morocco was out in the first round, and hope they do not even make it that far in the future.

But much more important is that Cameroun won! The fact that I did not see it does not diminish the accomplishment of a team that not much was expected from at the start of the tournament, but who, most of all, showed discipline and camaraderie. They were perhaps the team that most wanted it, and to come from behind against such a defensively disciplined team as Egypt was a great achievement.
It is great to have the Indomitable Lions back among the best in the world!

Friday, February 03, 2017

Semifinal disappointments

The two semifinals of the Africa Cup of Nations are over, and many did not expect the outcome, and are rightfully disappointed (myself included).
Burkina Faso played a great match against Egypt, and in particular in the first half were in total control. But the Egypt of Hector Cuper are extremely well-organized in defense and are deadly in counter-attack. Although Burkina Faso scored the first goal against the Egyptians in the tournament, the end result of 1-1 tokk the match to a penalty shootout where the veteran goalkeeper Essam El Hadary saved the day for Egypt.
The Burkinabe are understandably disappointed, but expect to see more to them in the future.

Then there is Ghana: a dominant African power who have been in the last 6 semifinals, but have not managed to win the tournament since 1982. And again they were favourites to beat a Cameroon side that has been full of problems in this tournament. But the problem with Ghana is that they see themselves as rightul champions: and you are no kind of champions until you have won the final. Cameroon won 2-0 on a match were they fought hard and just seemed to want it much more than Ghana. And that is the real credit of the match: an excellent Cameroon side that will surely give everything to defeat Egypt!

I had been hoping for a Ghana-Burkina Faso final. But while we can see these teams play for bronze, the final will nevertheless be very interesting!

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Africa Cup of Nations Quarterfinals

The year has for me started a bit oddly, with a lot of travels and work that has not fully permitted me to dwell into football. This is a pity since one of the best tournaments that modern national team football has to offer has started in Gabon, namely the Africa Cup of Nations. And although I have only watched a few matches from my base in Monrovia, it is full of excitement!
Firstly, the hosts from Gabon were eliminated in a group won by Burkina Faso ahead of Cameroon. The most talked about was the elimination of the Gabonese, but credit to a tournament-oriented Burkinabe side and a Cameroon side of indomitable lions who have not gone beyond first round since 2010.
Gabon's elimination was not as sensational as that of the highly rated Algerians, who with a team full of stars were expected to make it far. But a defeat to Tunisia and ties to Senegal and Algeria saw them out with meager 2 points, while an exciting Senegal side won the group ahead of Tunisia.
Another big team eliminated were the defending champions of Ivory Coast. Much was also expected, but like the Algerians they also only managed 2 points with ties against DR Congo and Togo, while losing 0-1 to Morocco in the last all-important match. Morocco are not exciting to watch, but solid, and Ivory Coast's stars seemed to underestimate them. The big surprise was probably the DR Congo, who ended up winning the group ahead of Morocco, and will be one of the sides to watch.
In the last group Egypt and Ghana did what they were expected to do, easily outplaying Mali and Uganda and playing for first place tonight, in a match Egypt won 1-0, playing very intelligently against a Ghana side that could surely go all the way with its experience and talent.
With this great first round, we now have the following quarterfinals:
  • Burkina Faso-Tunisia
  • Egypt-Morocco
  • Senegal-Cameroon
  • DR Congo-Ghana
The matches promise to be great in a tournament full of surprises. Most of these teams follow their dreams of victory instead of dear of losing!!
Although I will not be in Africa to follow all the quarterfinals, be sure I will!

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

48 team World Cup!?

Today FIFA decided to expand the 2026 World Cup from 32 to 48 teams. This is another decision that will undermine the footballing interest in a World Cup that all fans love, but which has steadily fallen in football quality during this century, and will surely deteriorate more with this.
In the short term the expansion may increase interest in countries that never have had a chance of qualifying. But when these countries lose again and again to other mediocre teams in mediocre matches, it will bring less and less interest among the real football fans, if not among the (many) people for whom World Cup football is nothing more than a Nationalist Masturbation Contest.
We will see more flags and hysteric nationalism, but less quality football.
At least under Sepp Blatter, for all the many things you could criticize him for, football came first. Under the new FIFA leadership it is the short term prospect of making millions to the detriment of the game. UEFA supports it; I am not surprised as they decided to expand the European Championship exactly for the same reason. But at least UEFA presides over the tournament with the best football quality in the world, namely the Champions League; UEFA knows national team football is a dying breed, so why not exploit it...?

I started loving football because of the World Cup. It was where football dreams were made. I have been seeing the World Cup deteriorate as I grow older, and for any young football fans football dreams are now made at Club level, mainly in the Champions League. I am sad to see the World Cup fade into the irrelevance of mediocre football, and I view this as one of the biggest nails in the coffin of the World Cup.

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

The continuing Valencia crisis

I had really hoped that the arrival of Cesare Prandelli as Valencia manager would change things for the (now tiny) Spanish giants. But I was wrong, after only three months in charge, and only one league victory, Cesare Prandelli has resigned in a way that has to make Valencia fans wonder if the problem with the club is the managers (there have been nine managers since 2012) or something more systemic.
Mr. Prandelli's qualities as a manager cannot be doubted, and he is just one among many successful managers who have left Valencia without success. So what is wrong with Valencia? Is it a management who thinks more of numbers than about football? Is it players who have no commitment for the club? Is it fans who are not supportive enough of young talented players?
Or is it rather a combination?
Truth is that Valencia, who ten years ago was among the great clubs in Europe, is now nothing more than a mediocre club that fights to avoid relegation. And as a fan of Valencia, it hurts to realize this.

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Mexico 1986 memories

In 1986, 30 years ago, I spent a couple of months in Mexico. It was just up to the 1986 World Cup, and I had come from Argentina, and was going to Denmark, and this became, in my subjective view, the best World Cup ever!
So it was interesting when recently I came over some old t-shirts and a cap purchased right before the World Cup:
One of the t-shirt had the teams of group E:
A memorable group won by Denmark (it was their first World Cup) and followed by the later finalists of West Germany. Who would have thought this group was going over to history?
The t-shirts are old and too small for me today, but certainly remain an old memorabilia worth keeping for a football World Cup history fan!