Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Short End of the Stick

Here I am again, left to with the short end of the stick…. Left to imagine how it is exactly that Real Madrid had been able to beat Almeria 3-1. Those greedy bastards working in Spanish TV haven’t settled their dispute yet so people like me have to settle for progressive live web updates as the match went on (I went with 3 simultenously: those of Marca, AS, and Goal.com)… and of course, I’ve had to spend the morning today hunting for clips of the match highlights in You Tube.
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So do enjoy the posting of the match’s goals by scrolling below.
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I was also able to find another site where they show other happenings in the match (aside from the goals)… it’s here.
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From what I’ve read and seen, here are a few thoughts:
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Refereeing
1.) Uche’s goal that was ruled offside could’ve gone either ay… it’s the sort of goal that gets annulled though it could’ve been allowed… but it wasn’t onside by miles… which I feel it the reason why it should not be seen as ‘ridiculous’ or ‘controversial’ in the way certain people like to view.
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2.) The Red Card for the take down on Saviola was justified… El Conejo would’ve scored had he not been taken down… it was gonna be sort of goal we all used to see him score.
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3.) The no-call for the penalty claim involving Metzelder was spot on… Metz was going to track back to another direction already…
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Thoughts on Almeria
1.) Almeria didn’t dominate Real Madrid like how the live commentaries last night portrayed… yes indeed they had quite a few shots on goal, but most of them turned out to be only like catching practice for Iker.
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2.) Uche’s goal was really nice though.
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Thoughts on Real Madrid
1.) Commentary from the Spanish press seemed to indicate that Guti was Real’s Best Player last night…. Good to see him gain plaudits for 3 consecutive performances played well. Is this the year we can finally see a consistent Guti? (I hope so)
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2.) It was nice to see Raul take the kind of shot he fired off which led to Saviola’s goal. He usually ends up hitting a spectator when he shoots from that far… last night, he forced a save out of the keeper (the shot was clearly on-target) which eventually led to a goal. Does this mean that Raul is REALLY in-form? (I hope so too)
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3.) I guess Schuster feels happy for his decision to rest RVN and gave Saviola a run out with Saviola paying him back with a goal… But come on dude… you scored on a tap-in, why all the blowing-kisses-to-the-sky-and-kneeling-to-the-heavens goal celebrations… too much. Over the top!
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4.) I am officially in awe of Wesley Sneijder. 3 matches, 4 goals… for a MIDFIELDER no one rated to be among the world’s best. (Sneijder’s name was never manetioned in the same sentence as Ronaldinho, Kaka, C. Ronaldo, Gerrard, Lampard or even Xavi, Xabi Alonso, Iniesta and Cesc Fabregas). I think his performances are slowly making a case for him to be considered among the world’s best. Is this Real Madrid’s equivalent to the San Antonio Spurs drafting Tony Parker with the 28th pick in the NBA Draft?
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5.) I’m SO HAPPY that Higuain was able to score. Despite only finishing with 2 goals last year, it was clear that this 19-year old was special. He worked hard on the pitch too and was always a danger. Signing him was a brilliant move for RM. I HATED how people were all over him for not scoring goals… If he scores a pile of goals this year… The silence from people who have been criticizing him would be music to my ears. His goal was a peach too! A ‘Petroleum Jelly’
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6.) I do hope, that former RM Youth Players Roberto Soldado and Miguel Torres eventually get some playing time and prove their worth to the team. For some reason, in Soldado, I get the feeling that by having him, Real are sitting on a gold mine.
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7.) It was interesting to see Schuster tinker with an RVN-less lineup… his 2nd half substitutions seemed to indicate that he was playing something like a 4-3-3:
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Start of the Game (4-4-2):
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Casillas
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Ramos, Cannavaro, Metzelder, Heinze
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Robinho, Guti, Diarra, Sneijder
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Raul, Saviola
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***
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End of Game (4-3-3):
Casillas

Ramos, Cannavaro, Metzelder, Drenthe

Sneijder / Gago, Guti, Diarra

Higuain, Raul, Saviola

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