January 16th, 2012
Weekend Results: A Little Less Conversation, A Little More (Naked) Action
Daniele De Rossi. Squandered several opportunities to show off his skillz in the rain. Image: Maurizio Lagana/Getty Images Europe.
We’ve got backchat, confusion and a massive moisture failure to deal with today, Kickettes.
What are you waiting for? An invitation?
Amazing news from the EPL this weekend, with Arsenal losing 3-2 to Swansea and manager Arsene Wenger taking the unprecedented step of blaming the referee. The Gunners scored within the first five minutes via Robin van Persie but Swansea were awarded a controversial penalty just 10 minutes later, which Scott Sinclair converted. The Swans took the lead again on 57 minutes through Nathan Dyer, Arsenal equalised through Theo Walcott but were unable to take the initiative and conceded late to Swansea’s Danny Graham. Arsenal are now fifth.
They weren’t the only North London club whose title hopes took a knock though – high flying Spurs failed to beat Wolves at home and further threaten the Manchester clubs dominance. City do not play until tonight, but Paul Scholes capped a week of mad comebacks by scoring the first of United’s unanswered three vs. Bolton, who are now second from bottom.
In other news, money continued not to talk as both Fernando Torres and Andy Carroll failed to score for their clubs. This proved less expensive for Chelsea who won 1-0 over Sunderland via a Frank Lampard strike, while Liverpool drew 0-0 vs. Stoke City at Anfield. Rumours that Carroll was more likely to score from the dugout than the penalty area are very mean.
Ooh look, it’s ‘The Roque & Pull-Winkle Show’. Image: Jasper Juinen/Getty Images.
Real Madrid and Barcelona both suffered what, by their high standards, constituted a bit of a wobble this weekend. Don’t get excited – no-one actually dropped points or anything like that – but both teams had to dig deep to get past teams who had no business posing a threat.
Strugglers Mallorca led for much of their encounter with Los Blancos at the Bernabeu, after Tomer Hemed scored a shock goal on thirty-nine minutes. Gonzalo Higuain and José Maria Callejón saved their team-mates from Jose Mourinho’s ‘special’ brand of finger pointing though, with strikes on 72 and 84 minutes respectively.
Barcelona appeared to be cruising in their game vs. Real Betis, early goals from The Boy With The Ballon ‘Dor and Xavi suggesting a rout was on the cards. But Betis hauled themselves level with goals before and after half time, and it was up to Alexis Sanchez and Messi to nail the points. The gap between the two sides remains at five points, but more significantly, Valencia and Levante both lost. Valencia are now twelve points behind leaders Madrid after losing 1-0 to Real Sociedad, while Levante are sixteen points off the pace after losing 3-0 away to Athletic Bilbao.
Having failed miserably to capitalise on the front page photo opportunity that is ‘heavy rain plus white away kit’, Roma also suffered the irritation of a match abandonment due to a waterlogged pitch on Saturday. The referee called time on the game at Catania after sixty-five minutes of watching the players galumph around what was effectively a swamp, with the score poised at 1-1. According to reports, the match will be finished ‘at a later stage‘.
AC Milan missed a great opportunity to grab the top spot this weekend, losing 1-0 to city rivals Inter. The unexpected result will be even more irritating to Allegri’s men because leaders Juventus only managed a 1-1 draw at home to Cagliari, meaning three points would have put Milan top.
Olivier Giroud scored two goals and a Kickette Merit Mark this weekend, the latter for in-match booty action. That’s a fine set of buns you have there, Monsieur Giroud. Image: PASCAL GUYOT/AFP/Getty Images.
Paris St Germain continued the run of form that saw them hit the top before the winter break, beating Toulouse 3-1. This isn’t a title race that’s going to resolve itself any time soon though, with second place Montpellier picking up three points against fellow hopefuls Lyon via two goals from Olivier Giroud. This allowed Lille to sneak into third, despite losing 2-0 to Marseille.
And for dessert? A large portion of (friendly) banter in the comments section. Begin.