No Margin for Error for Man City Against Barca

Oct 31, 2016 by Alex Baker

On Tuesday Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola will again face his old side Barcelona in the second leg of the two clubs’ Champions League group stage tie. Pep’s City side find themselves 4-0 down on aggregate scoreline after effectively being trounced at the Camp Nou two weeks ago.

It would be an exaggeration to say that City’s Champions League hopes are hanging by a thread, but a second defeat to Barça could make things very precarious for them. Especially if Borussia Monchengladbach beat do as expected and beat Celtic in Tuesday’s other Group C fixture.

Harsh as it seems, the 4-0 battering at the Camp Nou is a bit unflattering on City. Guardiola’s side were arguably holding their own until the unfortunate sending off of keeper Claudio Bravo. Had the... Read More

Guardiola and Mourinho Renew Rivalry in Manchester Derby

Sep 09, 2016 by Alex Baker

Manchester United welcome city-rivals Manchester City to Old Trafford on Saturday in the first major derby of the new Premier League season.

The match is highly anticipated for a number of reasons; two of the most high-powered squads in European, never mind English football, two title contenders, two of the three teams that have taken full points from the first three matches, and of course the managers.

Pep Guardiola versus Jose Mourinho, a rivalry that has its roots from the time when the two were at Barcelona together, came to fruition during the period when Pep was managing Barça and Jose was at Real Madrid, and has now been transplanted to the Premier League.

The world’s two greatest managers in charge of two clubs in Manchester, one of which... Read More

Liverpool face Spurs in Weekend Premier League Action

Aug 26, 2016 by Alex Baker

The third round of the Premier League season gets underway this weekend and teams up and down the country will be looking to solidify their position in the table heading into next week’s international break.Here are the key matches of the upcoming weekend’s action.

Liverpool must right the ship against Spurs

It’s difficult to know what to make of Liverpool so far this season. After being dominated by Arsenal in the first half of their season opener at the Emirates, Jurgen Klopp’s Reds came storming back in the second and pasted the Gunners with four goals. Arsenal eventually pulled a couple back to settle it at 4-3. Then last weekend, Liverpool were dealt an embarrassing 2-0 loss by Burnley, a team considered relegation fodder by most.

They pasted Burton... Read More

Barcelona Quietly Confident in Prepping for La Liga Season

Aug 03, 2016 by Alex Baker

With Premier League clubs snapping up every available player, the relative inactivity from the big Spanish clubs suggests that the English teams’ “arms race” is at least on some level, an effort to catch up with the La Liga powers. Like Real Madrid, Barcelona have been relatively quiet on the market this summer.

While the La Liga champions have made a couple of defensive moves—bringing in left-back Lucas Digne as a replacement for the now-departed Dani Alves, acquiring center-back Samuel Umtiti from Lyon, they haven’t really made any kind of “statement signing.”

Andre’ Gomes, the Portuguese central midfielder who won the Euros with his national team last month has been brought in from Valencia. Denis Suarez has been bought back with the club having exercised his buy back clause... Read More

Manchester City’s Kompany Set to Return in Two Weeks

Jan 26, 2016 by Alex Baker

Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany is set for an earlier-than-expected return to action, according to City boss Manuel Pellegrini.

“I don’t think Vincent will be out for six weeks – he will return in a couple of weeks,” Pellegrini told Manchester City’s official website ahead of City’s Capital One Cup semi-final against Everton Wednesday.

Along with Arsenal and Leicester City, Man City has emerged as a favorite to lift the Barclays Premier League title this season, but much may depend on how soon Kompany returns to the lineup.

While City has probably the finest striker in the Premier League in Sergio Aguero, the Citizens’ defense has been suspect at times this season, particularly without Kompany to martial them. With the big Belgian in the lineup, City has conceded just... Read More

Barcelona Blow Past Man City En Route to Clasico

Mar 19, 2015 by Alex Baker

Barcelona’s 1-0 Champions League defeat of Manchester City at the Camp Nou was tougher than it might have been, mainly thanks to City keeper Joe Hart, whose many saves kept the Premier League champions in the game if not the tie. Barça also hit the post twice and were unlucky not to win the game by a greater margin.

But all in all, despite the narrow scoreline, it was a masterful performance from Barcelona with Lionel Messi in particular shining brightly. The Catalans now head into Sunday’s El Clasico against Real Madrid in excellent form, with only two losses in 20 matches this calendar year.

It’s a far cry from the shambolic Barcelona side of earlier this season that was beset by talks of a crisis and rumors about... Read More

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