July 28, 2003

How not to prepare for your new season in the EPL: lose 2-1 to South Africa's top team, and whine about the rough play? Get into a fight (hmm, sounds familiar) and lose 4-2 to a First Division team? Or even better, let in 3 goals in the first 17 minutes and get trashed 6-1 by a non-League team? Wow, we're seeing some real losers here. Are Spurs, Leeds and Wolves signaling their fortunes this season with these misadventures?

posted by worldcup2002 to soccer at 04:51 PM - 17 comments

Given the already-brewing dissension in the ranks, I'm putting Wolves and Leeds on my list of relegation candidates. Spurs may go, too. But I also wonder about Fulham and Leicester.

posted by worldcup2002 at 06:25 PM on July 28, 2003

LFC only managed a tie against Crewe and last season crashed out of the FA Cup by losing to a First Division squad, right? Going to write off our season too? I mean, Viduka, to give one example, only played the first half in that Leeds match and many other first teamers were subbed out, which wouldn't happen in regular play. Get real.

posted by billsaysthis at 06:42 PM on July 28, 2003

Viduka wants to quit Leeds. Whereas, Kewell wants to quit Australia if they prevent him from playing for Liverpool. I think you can see which team is more likely to crumble.

posted by worldcup2002 at 07:14 PM on July 28, 2003

Dammit, I just picked Spurs as my EPL team, from that article a few months back. I am assuming that there is a large talent gap between the best of South Africa and the Premier League - but should we read so much into a friendly in a different hemisphere?

posted by mbd1 at 09:16 PM on July 28, 2003

mbd1: You can change your team in your user profile (if that's what you're talking about). As for reading so much into a friendly: Well, obviously, managers aren't playing with their full teams or necessarily their best teams, and everyone's experimenting with new players, formations, etc. However, when you get the manager whining like they are, I mean, there was obviously some lousy pre-arrangements. If you're going to spend all the money and go to a different country, at least set everyone's expectations appropriately. Or just stay home and play against the local lads. But anyway, I take Hoddle's outburst as more of a desperate attempt to draw attention away from his team's abject performance. Notice he complained about the other team's roughness, but not a word about his own team's shoddy play. Not to mention, all three goals in the 2-1 loss were scored by the Orlando Pirates. I think Hoddle has more to worry about than a supposed patsy team's unwillingness to roll over. And from the looks of an earlier SpoFi thread, others think the same thing, too. (And when the three gentlemen of the Midlands agree, you know change is in the wind ...)

posted by worldcup2002 at 10:56 PM on July 28, 2003

Here's Hoddle whining (or whinging, as my pals on the British Isles would say). To add injury to insult: Zeige needs thigh surgery, return date undetermined.

posted by worldcup2002 at 11:04 PM on July 28, 2003

Yeah, I know I can change my fantasy league parameters. I was talking about this thread, where suggestions are made for n00b Yanks. So should I jump off the Tottenham bandwagon and onto Blackburn Rovers?

posted by mbd1 at 11:13 PM on July 28, 2003

One thing to remember about proper English football supporters mbd1 - no one likes a glory hunter. ;-) Blackburn's a tough one to call this season. Duff and Dunn both off to sunnier climes but Emerton and Reid signed and without apparently even touching the 22.5m gained from those sales. A good manager who motivates his team well, like his character or not, and the best keeper in the Premiership last season and a yank to boot. Spurs have brought in Postiga who no one in the English game knows anything about and Zamora who despite his scoring record in the lower leagues can trap the ball further than I can kick it. The manager's a god-bothering nutter and rightly or wrongly the team are seen as bottlers without the stomach for a scrap. Personally I'd jump ship in a moment. But then I support Birmingham City, so what the feck should I know?

posted by squealy at 03:29 AM on July 29, 2003

I can only hope Wolves get stuffed, week in, week out. The loss to Morecambe gave me a great laugh. To be honest, when Wolves got promoted, I expected them to spend big wads of cash. So far they've spent less than West Brom did last year and the fans are getting restless. I can't honestly see Leeds or Spurs going down this year. There are just too many better candidates: Portsmouth, Leicester, Bolton and Fulham for starters. It would be nice to see Villa go down as well, but it won't happen. mbd1: If you've decided that Spurs are your team to support, then you're stuck with them. Sorry.

posted by salmacis at 04:27 AM on July 29, 2003

Spurs it is then.

posted by mbd1 at 09:29 AM on July 29, 2003

You could support Chelsea. It's only a short hop across London, isn't it?

posted by worldcup2002 at 09:41 AM on July 29, 2003

worldcup2002: No, any Spurs fan who decided to follow Chelski instead would just get laughed at. All credibility would be lost. You on the other hand, have none, so feel free to switch when Liverpool fail once again. ;-)

posted by salmacis at 11:20 AM on July 29, 2003

salmacis: All you'll have is your smarminess as Liverpool thumps Birmingham over and over again this season. Reds beats Blues! btw, why aren't you in the SpoFi EPL fantasy league? Everybody else is!

posted by worldcup2002 at 01:52 PM on July 29, 2003

To add injury to insult: Ziege needs thigh surgery, return date undetermined. As a Boro fan, I find myself overcome... with laughter. The crater-faced Judas.

posted by etagloh at 02:29 PM on July 29, 2003

Er, I think Salmacis is a Baggies fan, old chap.

posted by Fat Buddha at 03:03 PM on July 29, 2003

Oh dear, poor old Maccarone.

posted by Fat Buddha at 03:05 PM on July 29, 2003

Oh dear, poor old Gary Neville.

posted by worldcup2002 at 07:26 PM on July 31, 2003

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