Tag Archives: football

My 10 Memorable Moments from World Cup 2014 Gameweek 3

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#1: Suarez takes a bite at Italian Chiellini’s shoulder during their final group match. He was eventually served a 9 match ban!

 

#2: Mexico coach Miguel Herrera’s super animated facial celebrations when Mexico booked their spot in the Round of 16 

#3: Swiss Shaqiri’s hattrick vs Honduras. One of his goals is definitely a nominee for Goal of the Tournament. View HERE

 

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#4: Brilliant Messi brace vs Nigeria secures top spot for Argentina in their group. One of his goals was the perfectly executed freekick, above

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#5: All Asian countries knocked out by first round…SIGH. And all disappointingly ended up bottom of the table too!

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#6: Greece scoring an injury-time penalty vs Ivory Coast to seal a 2-1 win and a place in the next Round! Heartbreak for the Africans!

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#7: James Rodriguez comes on at the half and guides Colombia to 4-1 over Japan with two assists and one brilliant solo goal above

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#8: With Portugal already eliminated, Cristiano Ronaldo signs out of the World Cup with his one and only goal

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#9: With the 4-2 trashing of South Korea, Algeria became the African nation to score that many goals at a World Cup!

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#10: For the first time ever, CONCACAF region has THREE (3) representatives in the Round of 16 – Mexico, Costa Rica and USA. Meanwhile the European scrapheap heading home include defending champions Spain, former champions England and Italy, and others like Portugal, Russia, Bosnia and Croatia

 

38 Tips to be a Successful Football Fantasy Manager! (Part 2 /3)

Continuing my trilogy of tips to help you become a better fantasy football manager…

13. Be aware that the Africa Cup of Nations is one tournament that will totally affect your fantasy team, particularly if you have loaded it with a big African contingent. Typically taking place around early Jan till mid Feb, my advise is to slowly offload your African-based players by the end of December. Also you are encouraged to keep abreast of the news of players involved in the tournament. If you are lucky, some of your African-based players may be omitted from their national squad!

14. In the BPL, one of the more kan-cheong periods is during the Christmas-New Year madness. With all teams required to play like 5-6 matches within a 2 week stretch, it is something pretty stressful in reality football, and very much so too in fantasy football! During these periods, take note that the trading windows open and close at a very fast and furiious rate. Sometimes even as tight as 24 hours…miss these quick trades and you could easily lose pace in the fantasy league standings…

15. I would encourage you to ALWAYS make trades during every GW. There is a rare chance that your lineup is good enough for consecutive GWs. There will always exist a a chance for a trade to strengthen some position or to make a quick buck at the trades. The only exception here is when you are planning some 4-5 weeks ahead for a Double/Triple GW and you factor in additional trades you may need then… :-)

16. Don’t pack your fantasy team with too many players of the same team. Too risky, I reckon….unless it is for a double GW, of course…

17. It may be actually quite fun to have a Target dream team line-up at the start of the season and slowly work your way through the GWs to achieve it.

18. One of the more oft forgotten stat is the VAL of the player. This simple stat gives very valuable info to monitor all the players so that you’d know when the best trade can be made. for example, after a particular GW, you have no clue as to which player actually ‘performed’ well. All you need to do is just to filter the VAL list and look at which players are fast approaching the 1.0 mark. Player that have a fast rising VAL would surely increase their price too!

19. Always be on the lookout for players who are nearing an automatic suspension (accumulating 5 yellow cards). An overlook here may see you fielding a crock player in your line-up…

20. I know it may sound morbid, but try to make it a habit to check up on player injuries every other day, especially after each GW. Info like this goes a long way in determining which player to be used in the starting line-up or sold immediately!

21. There are plenty of resources out there to help you experience the complete action of fantasy football. Some of my favourite sites for Fantasy Football news and updates are Skysports and Fantasy Football Scout. My suggestion would be to follow them on Twitter to get the current updates, or to visit their website regularly…

22. All football matches are NOT played over weekends only. Be alert with those niggling mid week matches like the  Capital One Club, UCL matches, FA Cup matches, etc.

23. Be familiar with team formations. One of the ‘revolutions’ of last season was the ‘ man in the hole’ position. In other words, the position of an attacking midfielder who would play behind two strikers in a typical 4-3-1-2 formation. Last season, several ‘man-in-the hole’ players excelled to great effect, like Feillani, Kagawa, Mata and Cazorla.

24. Look out for “misplaced gems’. With so many players involved in the BPL, it is fairly common for some players to be wrongly identified in their positions. For example, some players who are naturally strikers could be seen as tagged as a mid-fielder. Buying these gems would be great because they can offer you more points at a (possibly) cheaper rate..

Stay tuned for Part 3/3 coming soon!

 

10 Things I Learnt from Euro 2012

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Being a true baby blue Argentinian supporter, I didn’t really follow Euro till I lost my sleep, came late to work, etc. In fact, all I cared about was watching in glee as Holland, England and finally Germany were sent packing home. Nothing else mattered after that, although I did feel kinda sad for our European ‘cousins’, Italy, who were trashed by Spain 0-4 in the Final last week.

Of course, not following Euro 2012 doesn’t mean there aren’t any lessons to be learnt….so, here are TEN things that I learnt from Euro 2012…

1. England still suck at taking penalties…

2. After Spain’s successful striker-less experiment, I foresee the number of job vacancies for strikers will start to diminish…

3. We should sack the fourth official and introduce video technology already!

4. The Italians are back..

5. Scoring with headers are back in fashion!

6. Being hosts does not guarantee a spot in the knock-out stages…

7. With Europe prefering head-to-head rather than goal difference, it would be best for teams to go for 1-0 wins in the future…

8. Coming off the bench does have its benefits. Just ask Fernando Torres who nicked the Golden Boot based on fewer minutes played..

9. Teams need to strategise and plan out penalty shoot-outs  properly. Portugal’s messy approach vs Spain proved their own undoing..

10. The only thing that can beat Spain right now has to be AGE. Here’s hoping two additional years of it will be enough to slow them down for Argentina to have a chance in Brazil 2014…

 

Football Fantasy: La Liga 2011/12 Summary

If my improvement in managing fantasy football teams in the Premier League this year is an indication of success, then my maiden foray into the fantasy world of La Liga  is crazily overwhelming with it then!

I started off thinking it would be kinda fun to see if I could manage a team in a league I know so little off. At the end of the season, I had surprised even myself by amassing a total of 1,827.3 points with an impressive average of 48.1 pts per GW! Heck, that’s even higher than my totals in the BPL Fantasy land!:-P

Of course the La Liga is not as popular as the BPL, even in Fantasy League land. With only 200, 157 players worldwide, I managed to place myself as ranked 526 overall, safely in the 0.3% bracket. And to think I started off the season without Ronaldo!!! I only brought CR7 on board from GW7 onwards. One can only imagine where I might have been ranked with both Ronaldo and Messi in my squad from GW1, huh? In addition, with my inexperience in the league, I was only able to raise an additional $8.8M to my team value, which ended with $158.8M

Oh well…there’s always next year to improve on my rankings! Or perhaps I may even try out my skills in the Bundesliga Fantasy League too! 😀

My Premier League Review Playlist

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Sigh. It’s over. No matter how many times I replay the recently concluded BPL Season 2011/12 in my head, Man City still end up champions (on goal difference also!!!). Sigh.

So instead of weeping my way whilst cataloging the season in review the typical way, I thought it would be more fun if I were to review my recollection of the entire BPL season as if  it was replayed and reviewed on MY music player….so, the playlist would look like this…

Pre-Season: “We Are The Champions” (Queen)
7 Aug 2011; Community Shield: Man Utd 3 Man City 2: “Rollin'” (Limp Bizkit)
28 Aug 2011; Man Utd 8 Arsenal 2:  “Unstoppable” (Kat DeLuna)
First 5 games of season: Maximum points. Crushing all opponents…: “Let The Good Times Roll” (The Cars)
23 Oct 2011; Man Utd 1 Man City 6; Humiliated at home: “Bad Day” (Daniel Powter)
8 Dec 2011; Basel 2 Man Utd 1; Knocked out of Champions League Group Stages: “Unbelievable” (EMF)
8 Jan 2012; Man Utd 3 Man City 2; FA Cup. Humiliation avenged: “Redemption Song” (Bob Marley)
28 Jan 2012; Liverpool 2 Man Utd 1; Knocked out of FA Cup: “What The Hell” (Avril Lavigne)
16 Mar 2012; Athletic Bilbao 2 Man Utd 1; Knocked out of Europa League: “We Don’t Care” (Kanye West)
11 Feb – 8 Apr 2012; Scholes returns: “Irreplaceable” (Beyonce)
….and inspires Man Utd’s assault to the top riding on an 8 game winning streak: “The Climb” (Miley Cyrus)
8 Apr 2012; Arsenal 1 Man City 0; Man Utd hold 8 point advantage at top with 6 games remaining: “It’s All Coming Back To Me Now” (Celine Dion)
12 Apr 2012; Wigan 1 Man Utd 0; Early signs of choke..: “Bitch” (Meredith Brooks)
22 Apr 2012; Man Utd 4 Everton 4; 2 points dropped after holding 3-1 and 4-2 leads; more signs of choke. Lead dwindles to 3 points..: “Free Fallin'” (Tom Petty)
1 May 2012; Man City 1 Man Utd 0; Title Decider.City go top on goal difference with 2 matches left..: “Livin’ On A Prayer” (Bon Jovi)
13 May 2012; Final Day. Title Deciding clashes..Man City vs QPR; Man Utd vs Sunderland…as it unfolded…
20th min; Rooney scores! Man Utd 1 Sunderland 0: “Keep the Faith” (Bon Jovi)
40th min; Zabaleta puts one past Kenny. City 1 QPR 0: “Damn” (Matchbox 20)
48th min: Cisse equalizes for Air Asia! City 1 QPR 0: “I Believe I Can Fly” (R Kelly)
54th min: Joey Barton’s dark side emerges as he is sent off for elbowing Tevez…: “I Saw Red” (Warrant)
65th min: 10-men QPR shocks City with a Jamie Mackie diving header! City 1 QPR 2: “Top of the World” (Carpenters)
90th min; At this stage, Man Utd would be crowned champions..: “So Close” (Evanescence)
91st min; Dzeko pops in a header off one of City’s hundredth (I reckon) corner. City 2 QPR 2: “Don’t Stop Believin” (Journey)
93rd min; Aguero skips past two defenders and clinically smashes home the title deciding goal…:-( City 3 QPR 2: “Heartbreaker” (Mariah Carey)
Final scores: Man City 3 QPR 2, Man Utd 1 Sunderland 0; Lost title on 2 stoppage time City goals vs QPR…: “Total Eclipse of the Heart” (Bonnie Tyler)
Post Match Blues: “Misery” (Soul Asylum)
Post BPL Acceptance : “Life Goes On” (Poison)
Looking ahead to 2012/13 Season: “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)” (Kelly Clarkson)

I will conclude quoting a tweet from Rio Ferdinand, simply inspiring for all Man Utd fans:

“Our history is built on coming back to WIN…..its what we do best…I can’t wait for the new season already”

 

 

Fantasy Football: Q2 Report

Whew! With just a blink of an eye, Gameweek (GW) 20 of Fantasy Football is in the bag, which means I’d need to report on my Q2 progress. Have I shown any improvements since my Q1 report?

At the end of GW 10, I was ranked ranked 3rd amongst my friends, and 17,088th overall, placing me in the 4% global bracket. My team value stood at $162.1M, an increase of $12.1M since GW1.

After GW 20, I’m pleased at my progress which has seen me more or less caught up with my two front -running friends. Heck, I even peaked in 2nd place for two GWs at one time! I am still ranked 3rd amongst my friends, with the three of us quite comfortably far away from the chasing pack. Globally, I have improved my positioning to number 3,855, which is in the 0.8% bracket globally. As expected, my team value has only increased a further $5.9M to $168M. I don’t foresee any more significant increases in my team value over the final two Quarters of the Fantasy Football season.

I did mention in my earlier report that I had to catch up to the top two by GW20 and I’m glad I did! The key stretch in Q2 was surely the chaotic Christmas-New Year period where all teams played like 3-4 games within a two-week timeline. For FF managers, that meant making critical trades during the short windows that was only opened between 1-3 days of each other. There was also one double gameweek for Tottenham and Everton, so that required some pre-planning and stocking up on players from these teams for the important double gameweek of GW20.

With only a mere 10 points separating the three of us, it will definitely be a real dog fight all the way for the remaining 18 GWs. Friend A currently has 896.6 points and Friend P has 891.6 points, whilst I sit a further 5 points back at 886.6. It has been pretty surprising to see Friend A continuing to amass huge points despite having a team worth more than $10M lesser than my team! Just another proof that a FF team can be successful without having to have a bulging team budget!

With the points so close between the three of us, I can only postulate these critical factors in our battle over the final half of the season:

1. Picking the Right Captain for each GW

2. Having the depth of squad as I notice more and more injuries over the past couple of weeks

3. Having a squad that is injury free!

Tips of the Week:

1. Get rid of all your African players as they would be involved in the African Cup of Nations for at least 2-3 weeks…with the exception that your players come from Cameroon, South Africa and Togo because these countries failed to qualify..:-P

2. Buy King Henry at a quick steal price of $10M. Value is bound to soar – only problem is how many games will he actually start for Arsenal?