Tag Archives: Ajax

Champions League group stage ends on completely crazy note

7 Dec

Well, who can say they saw today’s results coming?  Two results clearly stand out: 1) Manchester United getting knocked out of Champions League with a 2-1 loss to Basel.  Really?  2) Lyon somehow turning around a NINE goal difference to edge Ajax for second in group D.

Major props to Basel on the upset of United.  A late goal from Alexander Frei sealed second place for Basel and knocked United out in the group stage for the first time since 2005-06.  And that, Alex Ferguson, is why you don’t take the group stage for granted.

Meanwhile, in group D, Lyon scored six second half goals to seal an improbable 7-1 win over Zagreb.  Meanwhile, Ajax lost a 2-0 decision to Real Madrid, and with those results combined, it meant that Lyon, not Ajax, heads to the round of 16.  Holy crap, how mad does Ajax have to be?  For Zagreb to ship seven goals at home?  Absurb.  Props to Lyon for making something out of what seemed to be a near impossible situation, but it does seem a little bit sketchy since I think the futsal team I play on could have played better defense.

Only two English teams advanced to the round of 16.  Man City defeated Bayern 2-0, but a Napoli win with the same scoreline sent the Italian through to the next round.  Who would’ve thought that Chelsea and Arsenal would be the lone Premier League teams remaining?  Ridic.

While I’m on the subject, I don’t really understand why people would root for all the Premier League teams to do well.  Ok, sure, the league looks better, but really?  Who cares?  You’re telling me that as a United fan, you want Arsenal to succeed? I don’t think so.  I just can’t get behind the idea of rooting for a team that I would hate in every other circumstance.

Round of 16 teams: Bayern Munich (GER), Napoli (ITA), Inter (ITA), CSKA (RUS), Benfica (POR), Basel (SUI), Real (ESP), Lyon (FRA), Chelsea (ENG), Leverkusen (GER), Arsenal (ENG), Marseille (FRA), APOEL (CYP), Zenit (RUS), Barcelona (ESP) and Milan (ITA).

Really early, completely premature and totally unnecessary final prediction: Barcelona vs. Milan

Spots in round of 16 still on the line

23 Nov

Bayern Munich, Chelsea and Real Madrid have all booked spots in the next round of the UEFA Champions League. The five other spots from the four groups are still up in the air and today’s clashes could go a long way in determining who goes through. A win for Roma over Bayern would send the Italian side through, while the winner of the Spartak-Marseille match will have a big leg up going into the competition’s final day. The second spot behind Madrid is still up for grabs and Ajax, Auxerre and Milan are all capable of getting out of the group. In group H, Arsenal will look to lock up top spot with a win over Braga, while Shakhtar could also advance with a win over Partizan.

Spartak Moskva vs. Marseille
Roma vs. Bayern
Basel vs. CFR Cluj
Ajax vs. Real Madrid – 5 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer (Delayed)
Auxerre vs. AC Milan – 2:30 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer Plus (Live)
Partizan vs. Shakhtar Donetsk
Chelsea vs. Zilina – 7 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer (Delayed)
Braga vs. Arsenal – 2:30  p.m. ET/Fox Soccer (Live)

Champions League continues today

3 Nov

Bayern Munich is six points clear in group E, but Basel, Cluj and Roma still have all to play for as all three squads sit at three points.  The Basel/Roma match is a big ‘un. In group F, Marseille sits in third and is fighting for its Champions League life, but a win over last-place Zilina would be very beneficial for the French side. Both English clubs have their hands full today as they battle the clubs in second place in their respective groups. Chelsea hosts Spartak while Arsenal plays Shakhtar on the road. Meanwhile, AC Milan looks to rebound after previously losing to Real Madrid, 2-0. Ajax is looking to leapfrog Milan into second with a win over point-less Auxerre.

And in shocking news, the AC Milan/Real Madrid game is the one being shown live on Fox Soccer because it’s such a “sexy matchup”. Anyways, it irritates me that Fox Soccer shelled out money for the rights to broadcast the games, but they will only show three or four of them, and even then it is the “sexy” games or the ones involving English sides. Even though it’s not feasible for FSC to show all the games live, they should all be broadcast at least once during the night. Instead of replaying the Milan/Madrid game or the Chelsea/Spartak game, throw a different match in there so soccer fans can actually see some other squads play. It’s frustrating to only get to see a select few matches every time Champions League rolls around, especially since those matches generally tend to involve the same squads.

Chelsea vs. Spartak Moskva – 3:30 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer Plus (Live)
AC Milan vs. Real Madrid – 3:30 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer (Live)
Basel vs. Roma
Partizan vs. Braga
Zilina vs. Marseille
Auxerre vs. Ajax
Shakhtar Donetsk vs. Arsenal – 8 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer (Delayed)
CFR Cluj vs. Bayern

Arsenal, Madrid roll in UCL action

20 Oct

Arsenal had no problems dispatching Shakhtar Donetsk as five different players netted goals in a 5-1 victory.  For the first time in a long time, there was not a single draw in the day’s action. Real Madrid put on a dominating performance to dispatch AC Milan, 2-0, while Chelsea defeated Spartak Moskva by the same scoreline.  Basel shocked Roma with a 3-1 win in Italy and Marseille clung to hope of advancing with a 1-0 win over Zilina.  Bayern Munich used two own goals by Cluj to escape with a 3-2 victory and Braga defeated Partizan, 2-0.  Ajax claimed a 1-0 win over Auxerre, thanks to a strike from Luis Suarez.

Spartak Moskva 0
Chelsea 2 (Zhirkov 23, Anelka 43)

Real Madrid 2 (Ronaldo 13, Ozil 14)
AC Milan 0

Roma 1 (Borriello 21)
Basel 3 (Frei 12, Inkoom 44, Cabral 90+3)

Marseille 1 (Diawara 48)
Zilina 0

Braga 2 (Lima 35, Matheus 90)
Partizan 0

Ajax 2 (De Zeeuw 7, Suarez 41)
Auxerre 1 (Birsa 56)

Bayern 3 (Cadu 32 – OG, Panin 37 – OG, Gomez 77)
CFR Cluj 2 (Cadu 26, Culio 86)

Arsenal 5 (Song 19, Nasri 42, Fabregas 60 – pen, Wilshere 66, Chamakh 69)
Shakhtar Donetsk (Eduardo 82)

Reaching the halfway point in Champions League

19 Oct

After the games today and tomorrow, we will be halfway through the Champions League group stage. When Spartak and Chelsea kick off, it will be for first place in the group as both teams are currently 2-0. The game will be played in Moscow at the same site where Chelsea nearly claimed the 2008 Champions League title, but missed out after John Terry slipped on his penalty attempt. Chelsea will be without striker Didier Drogba, Frank Lampard and Alex. The game between Arsenal and Shakhtar also features the undefeated teams in the group. Even the teams that have zero points after two games still have it all to play for. A good run of form could see a team jump into the top two.

Today’s games
Spartak Moskva vs. Chelsea – 5 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer (Delayed)
Roma vs. Basel
Bayern vs. CFR Cluj
Marseille vs. Zilina
Ajax vs. Auxerre – 2:30 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer Plus (Live)
Real Madrid vs. AC Milan – 2:30 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer (Live)
Braga vs. Partizan
Arsenal vs. Shakhtar Donetsk

Champions League results – Sept. 28

29 Sep

Last year’s finalist Bayern Munich escaped Basel with a 2-1 win, thanks to a 89th minute winner from Bastian Schweinsteiger. Meanwhile, Spartak Moscow and Shakhtar Donetsk both cruised to 3-0 victories. English sides Chelsea and Arsenal both posted wins and Ajax and Milan played to a 1-1 draw. Real Madrid left it late, but emerged a 1-0 winner over Auxerre.  Roma defeated CFR Cluj, 2-1.

Tuesday’s Results
Basel 1 (Frei 18)
Bayern 2 (Schweinsteiger 56-pen, 89)

Auxerre 0
Real Madrid 1 (Di Maria 81)

Spartak Moskva 3 (Ari 34, 61, Ibson 89)
Zilina 0

Partizan 1 (Cléo 33-pen)
Arsenal 3 (Arshavin 15, Chamakh 71, Squillaci 82)

Ajax 1 (El Hamdaoui 23)
AC Milan 1 (Ibrahimović 37)

Roma 2 (Mexes 69, Boriello 71)
CFR Cluj 1 (Rada 78)

Braga 0
Shakhtar Donetsk 3 (Luiz Adriano 56, 72, Douglas Costa 90+2-pen)

Chelsea 2 (Terry 7, Anelka 28-pen)
Marseille 0

Champions League continues today

28 Sep

Sorry I have not been the best blogger this month, but in all honesty, it hasn’t exactly been a super exciting start to the season, particularly as a Liverpool fan.  However, I vow to do better from here on out as my team doing poorly is really no excuse.

Anyways, the second set of group games in Champions League play get underway today.  Chelsea will be without suspended star Didier Drogba as well as injured players Frank Lampard, Salomon Kalou and Yossi Benayoun.  With the missing players, as well as suffering their first loss of the year at the weekend, will Chelsea be able to step up against Marseille?  Arsenal faces no easy task in Serbia against Partizan either as issues with the squad’s goalkeeping continue and a whole host of players remains out injured.  AC Milan has lost only once on the road in its last seven Champions League games and has won the last three meetings with Ajax, although the teams have not met since 2003.  Meanwhile, Auxerre is playing its first Champions League home game in eight years and they have to host Real Madrid, a team coming in pissed off after a 0-0 draw with La Liga bottom-feeders Levante.

Tuesday’s games
Spartak Moskva vs. Zilinia
Basel vs. Bayern
Partizan vs. Arsenal – 2:30 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer (Live)
Roma vs. CFR Cluj
Braga vs. Shakhtar Donetsk
Auxerre vs. Real Madrid – 5 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer (Delayed)
Ajax vs. AC Milan – 2:30 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer Plus (Live)
Chelsea vs. Marseille – 10 p.m. ET/Fox Soccer (Delayed)