|Next Opp||Blackburn(H)||Cardiff City(H)||Besiktas(H)|
Surprise of the last week was Sunderland beating Chelsea in dingoB title game. The game might have had some EPL implications as well but that’s secondary. All title holders are at home. Besiktas needs to win to qualify directly to CL next year.
It is extremely tight among The Holy Trinity. There has been some changes among “Next 10” . Liverpool jumped and Chelsea regressed, Benfica won but bookies still favor Juve hence the lower score. If they can go through they might even end up in top 10. Sevilla continues its amazing run, breaking into top 16 at the expense of Napoli which falls even behind Milan. Monaco breaks into the ranking at 31 behind Berbatov’s sublime touch and deserves our focus piece today. Overall a good week for France as Lille also joins top 40.
dingoR focus: Monaco
It is difficult to asses Monaco’s season purely based on results. Winning the league would have been a huge success, and coming below 2nd a big failure considering the money spent. Since they were not in Europe we can’t judge their performance on that either.One thing we can do though is look at their players see what big ticket purchases brought to table:
Of 4 players which cost them 20M only Rodriguez delivered exceptionally well. Falcao has been a relative bust with 107.2 dingoR even before his injury sidetracked him. Moutinho has been more consistent but not exceptional. Kondogobia is very young but for 20M one can find better 20 year old’s. So considering 3 of 4 did not get many points who were the stars of this Monaco team:
Subasic has been exceptional this year. The underrated Croatian goalie is not starting for Croatia but should be in the WC squad. Kurzawa is a 21 year old French LB which should be one of the best in his position not just for his age but at any age. Unfortunately he has not been capped yet. Another youngster, Rivière(24) has not played for France either and I am getting pretty bearish on France for the upcoming WC considering who is not getting selected. Carvalho is still delivering at 35. Even though recent transfers have not been as bright as expected future still looks bright for Monaco. Most of their young players are doing extremely well and perhaps not reached their ceilings. If Falcao can find his form and Abidal(102.8) and Fabinho(92.0) in defense can be upgraded Monaco can challenge PSG.
What to Watch (Weekend)
2:45pm Roma vs Milan: 62.0
7:45am Southampton vs Everton: 41.2
12:30pm Bayer Leverkusen vs Borussia Dortmund: 77.2
2:45pm Internazionale vs Napoli: 55.3
9:05am Liverpool vs Chelsea: 85.8
11:00am Valencia vs Atlético Madrid: 80.7
11:30am Schalke 04 vs Borussia M’gladbach: 38.8
1:00pm Athletic Club vs Sevilla: 67.3
3:00pm Villarreal vs Barcelona: 66.2
3:00pm Arsenal vs Newcastle United: 9.8