Your Says of the Day: Atleti impress no one; City’s tough task

Date published: Wednesday 4th May 2016 1:21

Gareth Bale: No animosity with Cristiano Ronaldo

Atletico Madrid fail to win anyone over despite their aggregate win over Bayern Munich, while the quality of the Premier League and Leicester’s future are hot topics.

If you have anything to add on these, or any other subject, join the debate right here.


Premier League just keeps getting better?

Interesting thought from the lads on Monday Night Football, saying that the increased money now will keep the league more competitive. The reason being that the top clubs even if the go out and spend huge money it only strengthens their squad slightly, yet the smaller clubs can now also send pretty large sums of money, the difference is this will strengthen their squads massively.

The only way the bigger clubs can really strengthen in a big way is if they can start signing the “galactico’s” that generally go to Barcelona, Real, or Bayern.



Certainly can’t argue with the logic, can you?

Let’s also chuck in the reasoning that “smaller” clubs can also resist being cherry-picked by the larger clubs too, as Everton proved with Stones last summer. We can all go around in circles concerning the “quality” of the League we have, but there is absolutely no doubt we have the most competitive League in the world and long may it continue…

The proof is in the pudding obviously, but I really don’t think that Man City with Pepe, Chelsea with Conte or United with whoever are shoe-ins for the top four next season. With a couple of smart buys, the likes of West Ham/Southampton/Liverpool can also really get in the mix.

So, what odds are Burnley next season?

This season may well be a tipping point in terms of the Premier League. Part of this is increased finance, part of it is clever recruitment. Across Europe though I think it is a step up to the challenge posed by tippy tappy football and its proponents.

Clubs like Barca (Arsenal here) set the task, teams like Athletico, Villareal and Leicester have answered it. How do you beat teams overburdened with talent who play the short game?

Answer: you throw your normal fears out the window, play deep but with discipline, keep the lines straight and always be prepared to break with pace when your opponents have committed.

This is how a team like Athletico can win games while retaining only 28% of the possession of the ball.
It has taken advantage of the tendency of managers like Wenger to overlook defence in their pursuit of tippy tappy glory.

It will be interesting to see the next reaction…..

City have huge task ahead

City couldn’t handle the passing of Tadic and the movement of Mane. I struggle to see how their “first choice” defence is significantly better than the one that played on the weekend. They definitely cannot defend like Atletico, that’s for sure.

Any one of Modric, Kroos, Isco, and James can pass the ball much better than Tadic while the movement of Ronaldo, and Bale is even more frightening than Mane.

Pellegrini has tried his best and has made a decent run to this semi but I can only see one result here. Aguero and De Bruyne will be isolated and Ronaldo, Bale, and co. will be peppering the City goal.

City need a miracle here.



Isco and James didn’t start the first leg. Are they really they great anyway? Bale and Ronaldo are top players. Pepe can be got at. City can certainly get through and I really hope they do.

I think City will play Toure off Aguero with Fernando and Ferdinhio in the middle.

De Bruyne will drift in from either side. Now who plays between Sterling and Navas? Two very very average players. City can certainly score tonight. Jese will probably play up top as Benzema is out, while Kompany makes a huge difference for City.



Atleti fail to impress

Atletico Madrid: Failing to impress despite reaching Champions League final

Can’t understand all this love for Atletico Madrid. Sure they’re tactically excellent and Simeone has gotten the best out of his players, but they’re a rough team who are mostly barbarians sent out to kick lumps out of the opposition.

They dive, they kick the ball away, they fake injuries to waste time and they use every dirty trick in the book and get away with it even if it is technically illegal. They also play a super defensive game and rely on counter attacks which is pretty boring – thank God they have class players in Koke and Griezmann. They also have a manager who is right up there in the classless category.

Congratulations to them for going through, wish Bayern made it though and whoever qualifies tomorrow will have my full support.

Sympathy for the Devils


What a despicable little side Atletico are! Constant fouls at one end and pathetic play acting at the other, really hope City beat the two Madrid clubs to win it. Pep must be gutted to go out on a third semi final to a Spanish club especially when they were the much better side in this instance.

Heard something about banishing away goal rule by UEFA; anyone heard anything about what’s happening with that?



As unsavoury as some of the antics that Atletico use are, together with their solid defence, the likes of Barca and Bayern have to deal with it.

If these two teams are supposed to contain the best players in the world, then they need to demonstrate it using their skill and quickness of play that should eventually be able to knock down the Atletico wall. They weren’t able to do so.

I do sometimes wonder if Guardiola is one of these managers that sometimes gets too hung up on the small details in a game and loses sight of what the most important things are that will actually win them the game. Of course discipline is important and everyone needs to know what their jobs are, but does he keep the players on too strong a leash at times? Not criticising, just asking the question.


What next for the Foxes?

We will no doubt strengthen the squad, we have to, but I doubt we will spend big to do so.

This will only upset the applecart. If anything, this now maybe convinces some of our fringe players who weren’t getting game time and considering going elsewhere to stay. Players like Gray, Chilwell and Inler, who have had limited game time are now almost guaranteed game time due to Ranieri being forced to rotate his squad.

We definitely need to bolster our strike force. Ulloa, although galant is really not up to PL standard. If we can pick up another pacey striker then we could be formidable.



It would be almost suicide to bring a raft of players in for the Champions League and risk disturbing the spirit in the camp. The CL should be a side show for them, a bonus.

The league should always be the priority until you’ve built your side up enough over years to be able to fight on all fronts.


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