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Friday, November 16, 2012

Week 12 View: North London Derby


Below are the view for this week games and especially North London Derby will be the hot topic and Arsenal will be the main "points "for this week BPL games. "This point" is that time during the season when everything seems to be falling apart for Arsenal and the cries for Arsene Wenger's head on a plate get louder. As we are all well aware,Manchester City has now joined Chelsea and Manchester United in the conversation at the top of the league based on their financial power and the talent it has attracted. This has pushed Arsenal into a position where 4th place is really their highest realistic finishing spot based on the resources they have available. Sure, a team above them could stumble like Chelsea did in the league last season but year over year, money spent on transfers and salary will predict where a team is likely to finish. 

Real Advantage: 

Both team from Manchester:  Manchester City will have the added motivation of revenge after Villa knocked them out of the League Cup earlier in the season and with David Silva back pulling the strings it should be a comfortable home win. Norwich have already upset Arsenal and Tottenham at Carrow Road but there's a different level of mental strength within Alex Ferguson's squad - shown by their multiple comebacks already this season - and I have a hunch this could be the game for United to turn on the style.

Fulham: Dimitar Berbatov is inspiring a Martin Jol team for the second time in his career and with Craven Cottage something of a fortress these days it seems fairly certain that I can see the 3 points will be going to the home side.

Everton: The top form Belgian Marouane Fellaini will continue their form some more without the injured list Kevin Mirallas and he will assume the responsibility of attack more and more. Reading? Just worry of their first win will be when but will not be this game. 


West Ham United: West Ham find themselves flying high after picking up a massive win at Newcastle in Week 11 while Stoke are having a rotten season on the road and are finding goals hard to come by, so it could be a win to nil at Upton Park.

Forwards: 
  • Sergio Aguero - I can't bring myself to pick Dzeko even though he's been City's most consistent goal scorer - there's just something that says that you shouldn't start someone in fantasy who isn't going to start the match. With Aston Villa visiting the Etihad there is certainly the potential for City breaking out and starting to resemble the team they were last season.
  • Bryan Ruiz - I know that many fantasy players will prefer to Dimitar Berbatov but if you can't get him in a discount price, I would change my mind to this guy and his performance is just pretty for last few weeks. 
  • Lukas Podolski/ Olivier Giroud  I'm concerned about over-spending on Olivier Giroud on the back of one strong performance. Giroud is showing all the signs of a target forward - when he's good and scoring goals he produces big in fantasy - when he's not scoring, he's not going to help you much at all. Last weekend he was a nice option at an inexpensive price, this weekend Prinz Poldi looks like the better bet given his still-reasonable price.
  • Man Utd forwards All of the love was going to Javier Hernandez after his exceptional performance last weekend and the potential for injuries to Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney to propel him into the starting line-up at Norwich. Somehow I don't buy it. RvP and Rooney's injuries have all the hallmarks of Sir Alex's managerial genius as minor complaints save his charges from international friendlies. You definitely want a starter from United's forward line but I think we'll have to wait until Friday's Team News to make any recommendations.
  • Luis Suarez - Love him? Or hate him? If you're not sure how to approach the United forwards, Suarez might be your sure-starting alternative.
Midfielders: 
  • Adel Taarabt - his price is high a little bit but playing against 19th place team sounds like an opportunity. If his price is over your budget, Esteban Granero and Junior Hoilett would not disappoint you. 
  • Kevin Nolan - no doubt of his home performance. 
  • Gareth Bale If you're spending big on a midfielder then he's the one. Arsenal are giving up goals and have trouble on the wings. Bale has been scoring big fantasy points and gives teams trouble on the wings. What could possibly go wrong?
  • Adam Lallana - even playing at Loftus Road I still believe that he can produce fantasy points and QPR aren't good enough. 
  • Marouane Fellaini - jealous of those fantasy players that had him in a discount price. 
  • David Silva - could see the difference the return of David Silva and creates a lot of chances at last week games, I don't think that young Villa's midfield will rope him. 
  • Hatem Ben Arfa - with Papiss Cisse might miss this weekend games that mean HBA will take a lot of attacking responsibility. 
  • Raheem Sterling - he's cheap and have a great match-up this week home game.
Defenders: 
  • Shane Ferguson - Starting in midfield while listed as a defender at a price of 2.16 - hard to say no to that even if the upside is only OK.
  • Chris Smalling - his price is reasonable and the match-up is good, get him at 5.27.
  • Maicon - refer to above. 
  • QPR defenders Fabio is out of the QPR injury list and would be interesting if he's starting against Southampton. If not then Armand Traore and Ryan Nelsen will be the enablers. 
  • Guy Demel/ Winston Reid - not an expensive option and home match-up against Stoke will be the advantages of buying them. 
  • Nicky Shorey - if you get him in a discount, keep him. I would believe that he will continue produce a lot of points again in home match. 
Goalkeepers: 
  • Jussi Jaaskelainen - he is great, just can say like that. 
  • Julio Cesar - his price is drop and I would not expect that he can a clean sheet at this game but he will provide some saves points. 
  • Pepe Reina - he's back and the price is low, home match vs Wigan. 



Friday, June 17, 2011

Masters Of Their Own Destiny

   As we know, first season of Leonardo as Milan coach not so good, but also not so bad. He leads the Rossoneri end the campaign at the 2nd place of Serie A, but unfortunately lose to Manchester United in the first knockout stage.

   After he been sacked, he was named as Nerazzurri manager to replace former manager Rafael Benitez in a somewhat controversial move, due to the Brazilian's long career with rivals Milan as both player and manager.  Leonardo has started extremely well, collecting 30 points from 12 games, with an average of 2.5 points per game, better than his predecessors Benitez and Jose Mourinho. Leonardo set a new Italian Serie A record by collecting 33 points in 13 games, the previous record was 32 points in 13 games made by Fabio Capello in 2004–05 season. On March 15, 2011, Leonardo led Inter to a memorable 3–2 Champions League away victory over F.C. Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena in the Round of 16 after losing the first leg at home.

   Of course, maybe this affair will enough him to keep his job at Inter but leaves the club is the choice that he prefer. Why? Maybe we don't know what he's thinking about, but I can said that his popolarity at Milan clubs very low.

   I think many Milan fans are being far too harsh on L3-0nardo. What seems to add credibility to these angry outbursts is the fact that very few Milan players defend him. Players such as Gattuso, who never had a good relationship with Leonardo feel justified in an outburst. I think this is fair, as we are people and this is seen as a betrayal. That being said, this was done months ago, and I’ve seen very little of the intensity and animosity to Leonardo decline at all.

    I’m not defending his decision, as Thiago Silva did in an April interview with Eurosport Magazine, “I have nothing against him and I think it was the right decision to accept Inter’s offer. He is still at the start of his career and this means getting the best possible curriculum. I was happy for Leonardo After all, he wasn’t the one who wanted to walk away, but rather things happened within the club that he didn’t like. A few months later, he received an offer from a rival side.”

   I personally, would still welcome him back to the red/black side as a scout. If you wouldn’t then I’m afraid your pride is depriving you of one of the best scouts we’ve had in recent years.

   The man discovered Kaka, and was partially responsible for both Silva and Pato. He almost single-handedly kept Inter in the Ganso race despite the fact he could be leaving the club. He has some serious pull, guys.

   I’m not thrilled with his decision to coach Inter, but I really don’t think he deserves this kind of malicious attack day after day. It’s a job. I think he’s still a Milanista at the end of the day. He’ll realize his mistake, and even if he doesn’t, it’s ok because we realize it for him. The man loved Milan for years, and we can’t take that away.

   In any event, I believe we have made our point. I’m not saying there should be an end to the jokes or anything of the sort, but maybe we should tone it down with the “Leo is merda; he should die” comments found across this board. To conclude with the words of zen-sage Thiago Silva, “At the end of the day, he owes a lot to Milan and Milan owe a lot to him.”

   Italian full-back Zambrotta’s last season was not so good, and he has revealed that he did not get along with Leonardo, who coached Milan before joining arch-rivals Inter Milan in the middle of this season.
“Leonardo was probably the manager I got along with the least in my career,” Zambrotta told Sky. “Allegri is young and intelligent. He transmitted a winning mentality to the whole squad.”
   
   The Rossoneri fans should thank Leonardo and not hate him for taking over the reigns at Inter. We should be grateful to him for creating a monster out of Abate. Watching him run, up and down the right flank has been a great sight this season. It saddens me that people all around Europe are only singing songs of Gareth Bale. I must say, Allegri has done a really good job with his defensive abilities and I wouldn’t be surprised to see his name on the Roster of the National Squad in the coming months. He is the solution to Italy’s long time full back problem and I’m proud that he’s a youth product of the club.

   Pato has grown up (another reason for thanking Leonardo as he was the one who brought him to Milan), and just a few weeks back we had an article on this website about how Pato should actually assume the role of a leader in Ibrahimovic’s absence and he did exactly that. His goals only proved one thing that apart from flair, speed and great technical ability he has a strong presence of mind in the box. He can turn into a predator on any given day. How I wish Robinho had converted even half the chances he’s had throughout the season. Had that been the case, he would have been up there with the likes of Edinson Cavani and Di Natale vying for the capocannoniere this season. No doubt he’s been an excellent performer this season, but his finishing could actually cost us some crucial points at this stage of the season.