Tag: soccer

Coupe de France Preview: Which Favorites Will Fall? (January 7, 2017)

Coupe de France Preview: Which Favorites Will Fall? (January 7, 2017)

With Monaco surviving their first Coupe de France matchup by winning 2-1 over AC Ajaccio, can the rest of Ligue 1 avoid upsets in this early stage of the competition? 9 Ligue 1 sides play on Saturday, and here are my predictions for how those matches will play out. 460742540

Prediction: Lille OSC 3-0 AS Excelsior

Where? Stade Pierre-Mauroy

When? 8:00 AM CT

1392837-29853329-2560-1440

Prediction: Caen 2-1 Sainte-Genevieve

Where? Stade Leo Lagrange

When? 8:00 AM CT

stade_de_reims-philippe-huguen-afp

Prediction: Stade de Reims 4-0 Sarreguemires FC

Where? Stade de la Blies

When? 8:00 AM CT

nancy-16-17-home-kit

Prediction: AS Nancy 3-0 Besancon

Where? Stade Leo Lagrange

When? 11:00 AM CT

870x489_maxsportsworldtwo450546

Prediction: Nantes 5-1 Blois F. 41

Where? Stade des Allees Jean Leroi

When? 11:00 AM CT

fc01f

Prediction: Guingamp 4-2 Le Havre

Where? Stade Municipal de Roudourou

When? 11:00 AM CT

b1911

Prediction: Dijon 3-1 Louhans Cuisseaux

Where? Stade de Bram

When? 11:00 AM CT

3BE61DF500000578-0-image-m-151_1483722035083.jpg

Prediction: PSG 3-2 SC Bastia

Where? Parc des Princes

When? 2:00 PM CT

 

La Liga Preview: Espanyol vs. Deportivo (January 6th, 2017)

La Liga Preview: Espanyol vs. Deportivo (January 6th, 2017)

La Liga is back from the break, and we start things back up with a clash between Deportivo and Espanyol. Both teams have a lot to gain from this match: Espanyol can keep themselves ahead of the mid-table frenzy, while Deportivo can ensure that they don’t drop further towards the relegation zone. Espanyol’s last match ended in an abysmal 4-1 loss to heavyweights Barcelona, but they do have the talented partnership of Pablo Piatti and Gerard Moreno, who together account for 11 of Espanyol’s 20 goals. They’ll have to watch out for the striking threat of Florian Andone, but I believe Quique Flores can coach his team to a rebound victory.

Prediction: Espanyol 2-1 Deportivo 

FA Cup Preview: Manchester City vs. West Ham (January 5th, 2017)

FA Cup Preview: Manchester City vs. West Ham (January 5th, 2017)

Poor West Ham! Of all the teams they could’ve hoped for in their first match of the FA Cup, they draw Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City. The gap in talent is obvious: Manchester City sit in 4th place very much in the hunt for the Premier League title, while West Ham lie mid-table in 13th place after a very up-and-down first half of the season. I’m not saying that Bilic’s men are incapable of providing us with a shock early in the FA Cup, because with home-field advantage and talents like Michail Antonio, Andre Ayew, and Andy Carroll anything is possible. But they have yet to grab a truly reputable win this season, and having lost to Manchester City earlier this year by a scoreline of 3-1 it seems much more likely that Guardiola will secure his first FA Cup victory.

Prediction: Manchester City 4-2 West Ham

Copa Del Rey Recap: Underdogs Claim the Advantage (January 5, 2016)

Copa Del Rey Recap: Underdogs Claim the Advantage (January 5, 2016)

Whenever you see a game featuring Barcelona, you usually expect only one result: a resounding Catalonian victory. In this first-leg Copa Del Rey clash, I wrote off Athletic Bilbao under the same assumption. Bilbao, to their credit, are the 2nd most successful Copa Del Rey club in history, and their 7th place spot in La Liga (only 2 points behind Atletico Madrid) is a testament to there solid performances this year. But defeating Barca in their first 2017 clash? I just didn’t see that happening even with home-field advantage. Boy was I wrong. Always the danger man, Aduriz scored one and set-up the other as Bilbao walked into the half-time locker room with an impressive 2-0 lead. The craziest part: It was well deserved! They defended well, and on the attack they showed the world how out of place Barcelona’s defense can be if attacked quickly and fluidly. Barcelona, to their credit, showed some signs of life, and should’ve been awarded a penalty when Neymar was clearly hacked down in the box. Additionally, Aduriz, despite all of his heroics, should have been sent off for an arm swing to Samuel Umtiti which left the defender on the ground struggling for air. After the break, however, Barcelona reclaimed their usual place of dominance, and in the 52nd minute Messi smacked a free-kick off the crossbar and in to cut Bilbao’s lead in half. The rest of the game saw a flurry of fouls and yellow cards as Valverde’s men desperately clung to their one-goal advantage, and both Raul Garcia and Iturraspe were both given their marching orders for receiving 2 yellows. 9-man Bilbao parked the bus after these reductions, and somehow held on for the 1st leg victory. Barcelona deserved the draw, but it was just not meant to be. With the last kick of the game, Messi struck the post and Alcacer missed the rebound, capping off a rare, disappointing performance for Luis Enrique’s men. Whether or not Bilbao will be able to perform similar heroics at the Camp Nou remains to be seen, but it is clear that Barcelona need to step up their game to ensure the victories everyone expects of them.

Premier League Preview: Tottenham vs. Chelsea (January 4th, 2 P.M. CT)

Premier League Preview: Tottenham vs. Chelsea (January 4th, 2 P.M. CT)

Tomorrow’s London Derby features two teams in fine form. We all know about the miraculous 13-win streak that Conte’s men are on, but Tottenham have won 4 straight themselves and are right in the thick of it at the top of the table. Additionally, this match will take place at White Hart Lane so Pochettino’s men have home-field advantage. Can Tottenham, who have beaten their last four opponents by an aggregate score of 13 to 3, end the Chelsea machine? I doubt it. Chelsea has an extraordinary record against Tottenham, and although they’ve not won at White Hart Lane since 2012 I think they will equal the record set by Arsenal in 2012 for most successive wins (14). Costa will score yet again in this one, and Conte will have himself an astounding 52 points from 20 games.

Prediction: Chelsea 2-1 Tottenham Hotspur