Author Archives: theclairvoyant

Arsenal Take Lead

   It was a day of cheering the rivals, as the English Premiership title race continued  on Saturday. Arsenal faced off against Manchester City in the City of Manchester Stadium in an early kick off, whereas Manchester United travelled to White Hart Lane to face Tottenham Hotspur. It would have come as no surprise if supporters from both Arsenal and Man U were rooting for their local rivals in their respective matches.

 

   Emmanuel Adebayor continued his rich vein of form in the league, as he score twice in an emphatic 3-0 away win for the Gunners. Eduardo scored a stunning goal in between the Adebayor goals. Manchester City never looked like troubling the visitors, and Sven Goran Eriksson had very little positives to pick up from a game in which his side was clearly the second best.

 

   The double strike took Adebayor’s goal tally of the season to 21. After a thoroughly professional display in which Arsenal displayed their trademark style of football, full of deft passes and pace, all Arsene Wenger had to do was wait and watch the Manchester United match.

 

   Before the match, United had dominated over the spurs for six years.  The red devils had scored goals in abundance against the north London club; nine in the last season. Just last Sunday, they won 3-1 at Old Trafford in the FA Cup fourth round match. But the Spurs would have nothing of history, and decided that they would more than just make up the numbers.

 

   Throughout the entire game, it was clear, and surprising, that the home team looked the better of the two. Dimitar Berbatov opened the scoring in the 20th minute, albeit a little luckily, but there was no denying the fact that the Spurs deserved the lead. United never really came close to scoring , despite a spirited second half performance. Tottenham, in the meantime, caused loads of concern with the pace of Aaron Lennon and Steed Malbranque, coupled with the clinical touches of Berbatov and Tom Huddlestone.

 

   Sir Alex Ferguson grew more and more desperate as time wore on, and made several tactical changes; one involving playing Rooney as a winger. But at the end of 90 minutes, the scoreline still read 1-0. It was only in the 93rd minute that Carlos Tevez grabbed an equalizer, and with it, a solitary point for United. But the draw meant that United slipped to second spot in the standings.

 

   So, it now seems that the Spurs have done a huge favour to the Gunners, something the Blues could not replicate for the Red Devils. With a two point advantage, Arsenal will be hoping that their winning streak continues till the end of the season. Man U however, will have other plans, and they have enough quality to bounce back emphatically from defeat. The title race is on between two Champion teams, and both know that a draw at this stage is as good as defeat. Who will eventually be crowned champions? Time will tell. Sit back and enjoy the action.

Sterner Tests Await MSD

     Australia thrashed India by 9 wickets in the one-off T20 in Melbourne, and the harsher of the critics will have already started baying. But critic or not, that match has surely taught everyone one thing: that there is a very fine line between bravado and foolishness. Just before the game, in a press conference, M S Dhoni has said that his players would be treating it as a practice match. Looking at the result, it seems a lot more practice is in store for the entire team. Continue reading

The Emerging Giant and the Giant Killer

Nobody with his head in the right place might have predicted the two finalists in the Australian Open to be Novak Djokovic and Jo-Wilfred Tsonga. In fact, it seemed impossible that Roger Federer’s winning streak would have ended ; and that too in a semi final. But things don’t always go according to the script. Continue reading

The Ramifications of Victory

The Western Australian Cricket Association stadium in Perth is a name that brings images of hard, bouncy wickets and tearaway fast bowlers terrorizing batsmen from all over the world to mind. So what must supposedly be the strategy of any team that plays here? All out pace? A backup spinner probably? Continue reading

Bowling Woes

The Test series is all set to begin, and both India and Pakistan seem to be struggling to find the best bowling combination to go with for the match. A hallmark of a good test side is a good bowling attack: one that is capable of picking 20 wickets every match. Unfortunately, our subcontinent neighbors and we have routinely grappled with this problem. And its no different this time. Continue reading

Worst Premiership Start

  The EPL season has kicked off, and there seems to be nothing but loads of bad news for Manchester United supporters. 2 points from 3 games is’nt exactly how the champions would have wanted to start the season. This also incidentally is the worst start by a defending champion in a season.But, as they say, there still is a long way to go, and every possibility that a grand fightback is in the offing. In any case, they are 17th now, and there is only one way to go: up.

  What seems to irk fans the most is the manner in which the games have panned out. Against reading, in the frist match of the season, United kept attacking all the way. What was missing however was that elusive goal. It’s a very rare phenomenon: goalless draws featuring Man U. Sure, Evra missed an oppprtunity begging to be taken, and Reading hardly came close to scoring, but still the match ended goalless.

  Portsmouth was always going to be a tricky affair, and that was proved. 1-1 at the end, but again, it was United all the way. Save that Benjani strike, Pompei had nothing to show in front of goal. And yet, all the champs got was a draw. Now the presence of a predator-like striker was being sorely missed, somebody like Van Nistelrooy.

  The manchester derby always promises to be close, but this time, United lost 1-0.Again, it was a match they dominated from the word go. Some missed chances, (Scholes, Tevez, Evra) a crossbar hit (Vidic) and a deflected goal (from Vidic) later, Man U were staring at a long season of playing catch-up to the big 3.

  Now the focus turns to Spurs.Theres no Rooney, and Ronaldo will thankfully make a return. But united need a goal machine- somebody who will rarely venture out of the 6 yard box, and convert all chances that are  created. Somebody who can tap in goals, the kind of ones Tevez missed last time round. Roumour has it that United are looking for short term replacements for Rooney, and rumour also has it that its goin to be Nicolas Anelka. In any case, they had better get this season off and running with 3 points againts the Spurs, or else they may just need to kiss a consecutive premiership title goodbye.