February 2017

Real Madrid take back the lead
Posted by jschario on 02/28/17
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Real Madrid was able able to pull out a come from behind 3-2 win over a sixth-place Villarreal team on Sunday to reassume their two point lead over rivals Barcelona in the La Liga title race, however that was not the big news out of Spain this weekend. After a questionable penalty call that went in Madrid's favor, the big news was a possible referee conspiracy working in Real Madrid's best interest. Starting with the calls/non-calls, Villarreal's  Bruno was whistled for a handball in the penalty area which Cristiano Ronaldo swiftly converted to tie the match at 2-2. Later Alvaro Morata put ... Read More
Posted by jschario on 02/26/17
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It says a lot about the quality of your club when you are considered to be in crisis mode yet you still find yourself in the domestic cup final and atop your domestic table. Such is life at FC Barcelona this season. There has been much talk about manager Luis Enrique's effectiveness, but the results speak for themselves despite. This weekend the Catalan giants traveled to the Spanish capital to take on a reeling Atletico Madrid club that finds itself out of trophy contention for the first time in Diego Simeone's tenure as manager of the first team. They definitely brought the drama on their... Read More
Posted by jschario on 02/23/17
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As the Champions League was prepping for their night matches across Europe, Real Madrid snuck in a day game at La Mestalla in Valencia to take on a home side that was ready from the get go. Unfortunately for Los Blancos fans, Madrid was not as equally ready from the get go. Valencia quickly stuck the back of the nets thanks to goals from Italian international Simone Zaza and Fabian Orellana. 19-year-old Munir El Haddadi nearly made it 3-0 as early as the 13th minute but Madrid were lucky to see it go just off the mark. Both Valencia goals came within the match's first 10 minutes. La Mestalla... Read More
Posted by jschario on 02/15/17
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Real Madrid had to have been keeping an eye on Napoli leading up to their UEFA Champions League match Wednesday night. After all Napoli was making sure they had to pay attention, notching a few routes leading up to the test in the Spanish capital. Not to mention their manager, the legendary Diego Maradona was engaging in his renowned trash talk before the Italian squad arrived. Napoli sure did come out focused, with Lorzenzo Insigne opening up the scoring early the the eighth minute, catching keeper Keylor Navas in terrible positioning. Fed with an incredible long pass from the defense,... Read More
Barcelona already takes a huge L
Posted by jschario on 02/14/17
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Valentine's Day in Paris sounds like a dream come true, that is until Barcelona came to spend the night at Parc de Princes for V-Day 2017. The Catalan giants spent the night chasing Ángel Di María and Paris Saint-Germain around the pitch before walking off down 4-0 in the first leg of their Champions League round-of-16 match. Barcelona came into the match heavily favored to move onto the quarterfinals, however they allowed Di María to net two goals of his own as well as one from new PSG pickup Julian Draxler and Uruguay star Edinson Cavani. PSG were better from the start, playing sharper and... Read More
Posted by jschario on 02/10/17
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Well Barcelona can check at least one box off the list already this season. At least they are guaranteed at least a shot to tick off a box. Earlier in the week Leo Messi and co. brushed off Atlético Madrid in their Copa del Rey semifinal tie to advance to the tournament final where they will face the Cinderella of the competition, Alavés. The Basque upstart has surprised many this season, including the Catalan giants whom they defeated early in the season. In the domestic league competition, they sit in 12th place. In somewhat of a preview, Barça will travel north to play Alavés in a La Liga... Read More
Posted by jschario on 02/04/17
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US Soccer starts a new, yet somewhat familiar era with "new" coach Bruce Arena at the helm - yet again. Arena was the manager of the US men's national team for eight years from 1998 until 2006, when he was replaced by Bob Bradley. Arena is without a doubt the most successful manager ever for the men's team, as he led the squad to the quarterfinals of the 2002 World Cup in South Korea. That finish was the team's best finish since placing third in the 1930 World Cup. In those eight years his 75 wins are the most by any coach of the national team, and he parlayed that success into MLS by leading... Read More