The Net 17.4

stadiotoumbas

Not bushfire’s threatening homes in California, just PAOK fans in Greece welcoming Olympiakos to Stadio Toumbas.

Barcelona’s last chance for a trophy this season is the Copa del Rey final, which kicks off at 0730NZT, if Real Madrid manage to play spoiler it will be the first year since 2002 when neither the Catalans nor Manchester United lift any silverware. Here is a preview.

Today’s fixture at the Etihad is sold out, the Emirati bean counters will be thankful if the full quota of away tickets has been picked up by Sunderland supporters as, as this West Brom blog reveals, there is quite some difference in the price charged compared to home supporters.

Do they have executive of the year in English football as they do in the NBA? If so Southampton’s Ralph Krueger would be a strong contender, he talks to The Guardian’s Dave Hytner.

Lee Probert will referee the one FA Cup Final he is allowed as a referee. (Football 365)

Kim Källström had fun at least in Arsenal’s game against West Ham yesterday. Not sure how many Gooners would categorise that match as such. (Squawka)


The Davis Review – Round 34

round34miles

A dramatic weekend of Premier League football with key games at either end of the table.  At the top the leaders prevailed thanks in no small part to their generous Kompany whilst at the bottom there were solitary goals scored in 4 games, three of the scorers attained hero status but one became a villain. Read on…

keep reading


Serie A Riportare – Round 33

intersave

Just six rounds until the curtain comes down on the season: the stage was set for some late plot twists. AS Roma prepared for Atalanta’s desire to derail Giallorossi scudetto dreams. Make or break at the Picchi where Livorno welcomed Chievo and at the Mapei Stadium where Sassuolo entertained Cagliari. Any losers would slide deeper into trouble.

Luca Toni met up with his past when Fiorentina arrived at the Bentegodi. AC Milan faced Catania; Inter, Sampdoria and the ‘Wanda Derby.’ Napoli-Lazio has set a benchmark as pure entertainment in the past, but the attention was turned on champions Juventus at Udinese, a club with one eye on the future. keep reading


The Net 16.4

dortmundexplosion

One more cut to the tiger doesn’t affect him.” Diego Simeone confirming his namesake striker is very hard but will shrewdness in the transfer market pay off for Atletico Madrid? (Guardian)

A moving account of what a ten year old from Sheffield saw on the day of Hillsborough.

The London League. If the Premier League was confined to the capital.

Some relief for City and Cote D’Ivoire as Yaya’s groin injury is downgraded from season ending to two weeks. (ESPNFC)

One strong contender for manager of the year candidate compliments another ahead  of their meeting this weekend. (ITV Sport)

Jonathan Wilson on Jozy Altidore and his season to forget at Sunderland. (Fox Sports)

It is Matchday 25 in the Russian Premier League and 101 Great Goals have a highlights package.

Andrea Pirlo to Chelsea for Branislav Ivanovic and cash, that was to be the deal in 2009 but Silvio Berlusconi put a bung in it. Back Page Press have translated the Italian maestro’s autobiography, I Think Therefore I Play, and it’s currently third on the Amazon bestseller list.


The Net 15.4

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Gus Poyet has some worrying words for any Sunderland fan which also strongly hint at the club being the second in the Premier League to have three managers this season. (eFootball Net)

Naughty schoolboys in Gloucester. (Guardian) Then Manchester City and Paris Saint Germain are waiting outside Headmaster UEFA’s office to find out whether they got caught cheating on the Financial Fair Play test. (Goal.com)

Four more games, merciless Chelsea still relentlessly bearing down on the league leaders. (Fox Sports)
I’m living the dream and I want that to continue,” it’s hard not to want the same for a player who has given so much to the game as Rio Ferdinand.

In praise of boring, boring James Milner. (The National)

Jason Puncheon receives due praise from his gaffer. (Give Me Sport)

 


The Net 14.4

steviegemotes

Stevie G wasn’t the only one feeling emotions this morning; Hull City have made it to their first ever FA Cup Final with a cracking eight goal thriller over League One’s Sheffield United and Matty Fryatt experienced the whole gamut during his Wembley afternoon.

This morning’s two Premier League fixtures can be summarised as a tale of two red cards; one not given incorrectly and one given correctly but very early yet status quo was retained at the top. (Guardian)

But at what cost as Yaya has been lost to City for the rest of the season and Liverpool’s recently expanded SASAS likely to be contracted back to SAS.

Christian Eriksen shares some thoughts on Spurs’ recovery from 0-3 down.

Tell us something we don’t know, Real Betis manager labels the standard of refereeing in La Liga ‘disgraceful.’ (Marca)

Who knows, maybe one day I’ll face Icardi on the field and we’ll have a good laugh about it.” Maxi Lopez has obviously not reached this point of forgiveness towards his former Sampdoria teammate, refusing to shake the Argentine’s hand before the game with Inter and it all has to do with A Fish Called Wanda.

This afternoon’s Serie A highlights show will be one not to be missed as poor Maxi suffered the indignity of missing a penalty and watching his cuckold bag a brace.


The Davis Preview – Round 34

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This week’s games are all kicking off seven minutes late in commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough tragedy (the Liverpool v Nottingham Forest game was called off in the seventh minute). Whilst it will be a sombre and reflective moment it could also be the day Liverpool celebrate the memory of the 96 who lost their lives in the tragedy by putting one hand on the Premier League title. And at the other end of the table it will be the dance of the desperate. Who cares what it looks like as long as you get a result. keep reading


The Net 11.4

sillyman

How to be a European Cup winning manager and get yourself fired by Vincent Tan after two days; the Ljupko Petrović method of having a photo of yourself being trained in assault rifles by Arkan.

Roberto Carlos thinks Christiano Ronaldo needs to ignore ‘la decima’ mania and ensure he rehabs his knee injury fully to avoid it becoming a chronic problem. (Marca)

Tony Pulis keeps the pressure on everyone at Selhurst Park, warning that they are not safe yet. (Goal.com)

ITV have put together this helpful guide to ManUre’s ten worst moments this season.

Ever wondered where the red and yellow card system came from? (8by8mag)

Chris Hughton leaves Norwich shaking his fist in impotent rage. (Take Football)

 


Fantasy Football Easter Treasure Hunt

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Yesterday we had the pleasure of making the drive out to Waterview to deliver a super-mega-prize-pack to January’s Fantasy Manager of the Month Julian Tatton Turner, who was actually the runner up but we couldn’t locate the other fella. Along the way we were able to survey progress being made on the Waterview Connection. We were suitably impressed.

Easter is nearly here, so upon arrival at our destination we were seasonally inspired to deliver the prizes in an appropriate treasure hunt form. Julian’s front yard, although compact, offered numerous suitable hiding places which we took full advantage of.

We heard back from Julian this morning, and yes, he succeeded in finding all of the treasure. Blurred surveillance images of this operation are available for perusal after the jump. keep reading


The Net 10.4

sports

It’s halftime…Can Manchester United scrape past Bayern?

It comes as no surprise that Belgium are going to be quite a handful despite the loss of Benteke, it’s no wonder folks continue to talk up their World Cup Challenge.

Come on Harry, Hurry up Harry come on!

Forget the Champions League, it’s the FA Cup that Arsenal should really be gunning for.

Neymar Nutzed.

Someone has suggested that only five things have gone wrong at Tottenham this season.


Beat the Bookie

beatthebookie

Congratulations danielw and stables who are our Beat the Bookie winners this week. We trust that they’ll put their $50 TAB credit to good use. Only five rounds remain until someone is going to be $5,000 richer. Wowzer.


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League Table

# Team MP W D L G P
1 Liverpool 34 24 5 5 +51 77
2 Chelsea 35 23 6 6 +41 75
3 Manchester City 33 22 5 6 +54 71
4 Arsenal 34 20 7 7 +18 67
5 Everton 34 19 9 6 +21 66
6 Tottenham Hotspur 35 19 6 10 +2 63
7 Manchester United 33 17 6 10 +18 57
8 Southampton 35 13 10 12 +5 49
9 Newcastle United 35 14 4 17 -15 46
10 Stoke City 35 11 11 13 -10 44
11 Crystal Palace 35 13 4 18 -13 43
12 West Ham United 35 10 7 18 -10 37
13 Swansea City 35 9 9 17 -4 36
14 Hull City 33 10 6 17 -6 36
15 Aston Villa 34 9 8 17 -14 35
16 West Bromwich Albion 33 6 15 12 -11 33
17 Norwich City 34 8 8 18 -27 32
18 Cardiff City 35 7 9 19 -34 30
19 Fulham 35 9 3 23 -42 30
20 Sunderland 34 7 8 19 -24 29
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Upcoming Fixtures

April 21, 2014
Norwich City 00:00 Liverpool
Hull City 02:05 Arsenal
Everton 04:10 Manchester United
April 22, 2014
Manchester City 08:00 West Bromwich Albion
April 27, 2014
Southampton 00:45 Everton
Swansea City 03:00 Aston Villa
West Bromwich Albion 03:00 West Ham United
Stoke City 03:00 Tottenham Hotspur
Fulham 03:00 Hull City
Manchester United 05:30 Norwich City
April 28, 2014
Sunderland 00:00 Cardiff City
Liverpool 02:05 Chelsea
Crystal Palace 04:10 Manchester City
April 29, 2014
Arsenal 08:00 Newcastle United
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