Superstar Vinicius shows range in UCL performances and will Man United be in the race for the top four?


Every week, Luis Miguel Echegaray discusses the latest from the world of soccer, including standout performances, what you may have missed and what to watch out for in the coming days.


magic of Vinicius Jr.

real Madrid‘S 1-1 draw Together Manchester City in the first phase of Champions League The semi-final was entertaining, full of strategic moves from both sides, excellent defensive performances (looking at you, Antonio Rudiger And david alaba, and some controversy, But I thought I’d lead off the column with the star of this week’s show: Vinicius Jr.

He was majestic on Tuesday night. Never mind his rocket of goal (his first from outside the box in the tournament), which opened the scoring. los blancos, It was the fact that in a squad packed with tremendous talent, it was a 22-year-old Brazilian who served as its protagonist. In fact, this season in the Champions League, Vini Júnior has been involved in every goal for Real Madrid except one (group stage match in October against Shakhtar Donetsk,

For me Vinicius is the best player in the world at the moment. Yes, there are better finishers and more complete passers but when you combine his electric delivery, talent and direct contributions, none are better. He changes the tempo of the game like a bolt of lightning and absolutely Allen Iverson’s crossover against Michael Jordan In 1997, his change of direction was disastrous. According to AIJordan called Iverson a “little b—-” in that game because deep inside, Jordan knew he had underestimated him.

No one is underestimating Vinicius Jr.

edin dzeko Saves in the Champions League derby

The second Champions League semi-final was an Italian battle at the famous San Siro derby della madonina, and in an electric setting, inter Milan Mike turned out to be aggressive and purposeful in Tyson-esque mode. After 10 minutes, they were leading 2–0. AC Milan And the only thing that could ruin his day is that he didn’t add anything to the scoreline.

But I must take this moment to pay tribute to one of the most underrated strikers in European football: Edin Djeko of Bosnia and Herzegovina. It was his superb volley from a corner that opened the scoring Nerazzurri And then set the tone. Per la gazzetta dello sportIt was the first time that AC Milan had conceded a corner in 104 attempts.

From Wolfsburg to Man City, Dzeko has been grossly underrated, and I’ve always seen him as a formidable striker for one main reason: he gets the job done. Even at 37, he’s still acting like a 15 year old bourbon. He is the Cillian Murphy of football. Put him in any role and with any cast, and he will deliver.

a wonderful weekend in Premier League

on Monday, everton produced them best performance of the season as they destroyed A strong, Europe-hunting Brighton. Before the game, Toffees head coach Sean Deitch would show tapes of Joe Royle’s Everton side from the mid-’90s – famously labeled the “Dogs of War” – as he played Roberto De Zerbi’s side in front of his own. The attack was 5-1 on the receiving yard. ,

As a result, Everton slipped out of the relegation zone and now have the daunting task of defending their position against Manchester City on Sunday. right after that match, armorywon a great victory against Newcastle United, host the seagull above. Can you imagine that somehow, surprisingly, Everton beat City? Now, this will heat up the title race even more. They haven’t beaten Man City since 2017 so I’m not holding my breath but one can only hope for more theatrics and the Premier League almost always delivers.



Sunderland progress to playoffs with 3-0 win over Preston North End

Sunderland get three second-half goals to win, and with some help from Blackburn, they advance to the English Football League Championship promotion playoff.

Who will earn promotion to the Premier League?

Championship playoffs are the most valuable matches in world football to decide promotion to the English top flight. The prize for last place in next season’s Premier League can reward the winning club with up to $300m due to broadcasting and marketing/commercial differences between the two leagues. The stakes are high and the matches will provide great entertainment.

There are some explosive stories in this season. former is Manchester United Michael Carrick’s Middlesbrough host Coventry City on SundayStream live on ESPN+ at 7am ET) But it is the second match that I am more excited about.

In 2013, Luton Town were the only non-league team to beat Premier League side Norwich City in the FA Cup. Ten years later and they are three matches away from making it to the richest league in the world. They will face Sunderland on Saturday (Stream live on ESPN+ at 12:30PM ET), opposing team that made the playoffs in dramatic fashion on the last day of the season. The Black Cats is also a great story because I was writing about their Netflix documentary a few years ago. “Sunderland ’til I Die,” When they lost in League One in 2018. Check them out now.


goodbye barcelona Sergio Busquets

After an illustrious career which included three Champions League trophies and eight league titles, Sergio Busquets and Barcelona will end Their 18-year relationship ends at the end of the season. It is under offside for two reasons. First of all, it has dawned on me that I am old. It seems to me only yesterday that Busquets – a performer on the pitch – joined Barcelona’s senior team after graduating from their youth academy la macia in 2007.

Secondly, I fear that the end of Busquets and Barcelona is also the end of a style of play marked by its simplicity which, as Leonardo da Vinci once said, “is the ultimate sophistication.” That’s Busquets, a subtle genius in a sea of ​​confusion, and I think we’re seeing less and less of this type of player, and less and less of a version of him. frankie de jong – her partner and friend – as close as we’ll get, but she also doesn’t have the quiet beauty of Busquets.

wherever he goes next (reports from Saudi Arabia and MLS’s), always remember, Busquets was art in Barcelona.

manchester united is feeling the pressure

Currently sitting in fourth by the skin of their teeth, Man United were given a free pass following Newcastle United’s loss to Arsenal, but liverpoolDespite playing an extra game, coupled with two straight losses to the Red Devils, the ‘Surge (six wins in a row) managed to secure a Champions League spot for manager Erik ten Haag and his team after their exit from the previous season. increased pressure.



Why Man United’s problems run deeper than De Gea

Craig Burley analyzes everything that went wrong for Manchester United against West Ham.

sunday’s fatal mistake By David de Gea The mental strength of this squad against West Ham didn’t help ease the fan base’s nerves. What’s more, the worried cloud of a Old Trafford sale looms large, Man United, who host Wolves on Saturday, will be considered a Champions League spot if they do not earn Colossal failure for Ten Haag’s first season, But I would also say this is less Ten Haag’s fault and more a team that still needs improvement to catch up with the likes of Man City, Arsenal and at this point Newcastle.

This summer is crucial, but first let’s see how they end the season.

Racist and anti-gay abuse on social media

On Thursday, the player unions that represent football, the NBA and the WNBA issued a report It analyzed derogatory tweets sent to 160 professional players from July to September 2021. Part of the findings found 1,558 abusive tweets sent from 1,455 accounts. Not bots. Of those tweets from football players, 85% contained anti-gay or racist language. Two out of three footballers have been subjected to abusive and/or discriminatory treatment. Women receive a tremendous amount of sexual harassment.

Social media companies, especially Twitter, have a responsibility to step up security. Hashtags and posts are not enough. There has to be a huge infrastructure as well as creating a strict protocol when accepting users (identity and valid contact information).

In addition to my job with ESPN, once a semester I teach a class at my journalism prep graduate school on the value and importance of social media and reporting in the digital age, and this is a major discussion point. In order to create a better environment that can also be beneficial for business, social media platforms need to do more to protect their users. Freedom of expression is one thing, abusing its principles is a different matter.

Please, let’s move on. Here is the full report,

tweet of the week

Northampton Town Solidarity

Talking about sympathy. A football club is more than just football. This too is a family. Cue Northampton Town manager John Brady.

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