Monday, September 26, 2011

Champions League Tuesday

Very good week-end with Yasir being placed, Man City, Newcastle, Arsenal and Real Madrid all winning. Man Utd drew with Stoke for a voided punt.

Nothing extraordinary from the world of sports from this week-end to really comment on. The European big guns are firing on all cylinders atop the tables. Man Utd got a good point at La Brittania, a very difficult venue for even the big teams. Man City showed some mental toughness in wearing down Everton. A few years ago, they wouldn't have had that quality to get the 3 points out of such tough games.

In La Liga, Barcelona and Real Madrid treated themselves to goal-fests after dropping points in their last outings. I still think Mourinho has problems to solve in his Madrid squad, and Barcelona definitely need a top defender if they are to challenge on all fronts this season.

Bayern is just trouncing the opposition in the Bundesliga but the league is not a measure of the team's real strength. A more appropriate benchmark will be when they meet Man City on Tuesday's Champions League match.

In Italy, it will be interesting to see how Ranieri fares with Inter. They certainly got off to a good start by winning at Bologna. Ranieri is a very decent coach who gets good results. Unfortunately, he has shown that he can makes the odd silly mistakes that can cost his team dearly. That's what makes him not-so great.

On Tuesday, the Champions League rightfully takes centre-stage. I like Man Utd's chances at home to Basel. It will be folly for the Red Devils to under-estimate the Swiss team, particularly with the absence of Rooney. The absence of the England striker and his front partner Chicharito, certainly weaken the attacking prowess of the English champions. They should be on top at the end though, and a draw-no-bet looks safe. That's my recommendation.

Draw-no-bet: Man Utd

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