Tag Archives: Lille

2011-12 Champions League group stage set

25 Aug

After a tediously boring draw earlier today, the Champions League groups are ready to go for another year of action. Group A ended up as the toughest draw with Bayern Munich, Villarreal, Manchester City and Napoli. Of course, Barcelona and Manchester United have one team in each of their groups that could pose a challenge.  The first group games are set for Sept. 13-14 and the complete schedule can be found here.

Oh and in case you were wondering, Lionel Messi won the first UEFA Best Player in Europe Award, which was announced after the draw to the surprise of approximately no one.

Group A
Bayern Munich (GER)
Villarreal (ESP)
Manchester City (ENG)
Napoli (ITA)

Group B
Inter (ITA)
CSKA Moskva (RUS)
Lille (FRA)
Trabsponzor (TUR)

Group C
Manchester United (ENG)
Benfica (POR)
Basel (SUI)
Otelui Galati (ROU)

Group D
Real Madrid (ESP)
Lyon (FRA)
Ajax (NED)
Dinamo Zagreb (CRO)

Group E
Chelsea (ENG)
Valencia (ESP)
Bayer Leverkusen (GER)
Genk (BEL)

Group F
Arsenal (ENG)
Marseille (FRA)
Olympiacos (GRE)
Borussia Dortmund (GER)

Group G
Porto (POR)
Shakhtar Donetsk (UKR)
Zenit St. Petersburg (RUS)
APOEL (CYP)

Group H
Barcelona (ESP)
AC Milan (ITA)
BATE (BLR)
Viktoria Plzen (CZE)

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Liverpool’s Europa League life on the line today

18 Mar

Liverpool hosts Lille in the second leg of the Europa League round of 16 today.  Lille holds a 1-0 lead after the first leg.  The Reds are coming off a 4-1 beating of Portsmouth on Monday.  Alberto Aquilani is unlikely to play after missing training Wednesday with a virus.  The winner advances to the quarterfinals and as it’s Liverpool’s only remaining chance at silverware this year, hopefully they can pull out a win.  They put on a good display of football Monday, but inconsistency has plagued the team this year, so who knows what squad will actually show up.

Dempsey returns, Liverpool loses

12 Mar

The good news first.  Clint Dempsey made a substitute appearance for Fulham yesterday in their Europa League loss to Juventus.  It was his first action in almost three months.  Having Dempsey back is a huge boost for team USA.  There was initially speculation that he would be out until May, but fortunately, that’s not true.  Dempsey is a World Cup veteran and will be a vital part of the team in South Africa.  He still has a few months to get back to 100% fitness, which again is good for the US as Dempsey is generally a player you want on the field as much as possible in SA.

As for Liverpool…can the season just end now?  The Reds dropped a disappointing 1-0 decision to Lille in their first leg Europa League clash.  This team really just doesn’t seem to have the heart they did last year.  Something has to change.  I’m guessing Rafa is done at the end of the season, but who knows if that will be enough to bring the passion back to Anfield.