Tag Archives: Alberto Aquilani

Serie A Preview – Juve to unseat Inter

Juventus captain Alessandro Del Piero are hoping to overtake Inter Milan, the five-time defending champions of Italy (Photo Courtesy James Adams)

By Kevin Koczwara

Inter Milan dominated the world of top-flight soccer last season. The club won its domestic title in Italy, Coppa Italia and the one trophy the club’s fans and ownership had been dreaming of for 60 years, the Champions League. Inter was on top of the world, and when that happens in the world of soccer, people take notice and try to build off of your success.

Inter Milan needs to find a way to handle this season without manager Jose Mourinho – the “Special One” – who bolted for Real Madrid at just days after winning the Champions League title with Milan.

Inter’s league title didn’t come without tough competition. Roma made a valiant run for the title in the later months as they strung together win after win, but it was unable to knock down the reigning and eventual champions.
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Liverpool Slip (Again) and Madrid Moves Atop

By Kevin Koczwara

Liverpool lost to Wigan this week for the first time in the English Premier League era. It was a sad display from last year’s runner up.With Manchester City, Aston Villa and Tottenham all looking on, they must have been excited to see this uninspired squad.

Liverpool looked flat in their attack. They lacked the finishing touch and didn’t even register a shot on goal.Wigan was playing with 10 men behind the ball, but that didn’t stop Liverpool last year and it doesn’t stop the teams with Champions League aspirations.

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FA Should Punish Sir Alex

Sir Alex has been on the war path lately. He has not been holding his tongue about his true feelings towards referees lately. And maybe the FA should step in, for once. (Courtesy Wikicommons)

Sir Alex has been on the war path lately. He has not been holding his tongue about his true feelings towards referees lately. And maybe the FA should step in, for once. (Courtesy Wikicommons)

By Kevin Koczwara

Am I the only one confused to as how Sir Alex Ferguson can get away with criticizing referees time and again while other managers in England get suspended for their comments? Sir Alex is going to be penalized for his comments about referee Alan Wiley. At times Sir Alex sounds like a high school student criticizing a referee from the stands during his school’s football game.

The FA (England’s ruling body on all thing football and its rules) clearly states:

“Post-match comments in relation to Match Officials and incidents are still permitted provided they are not personal in their nature, imply bias or attack the integrity of the Officials in charge of the match, or in any other respect bring the game into disrepute.”

Ferguson’s comments seem to fit into this domain. He is brash and at times too critical of the officiating in matches. I wish he would accept that Manchester United will lose games, and when they do, it isn’t always a referee’s fault.

And Ferguson has stepped over the line yet again–even as he is awaiting a ban– after the Liverpool match this past weekend. He has commented yet again on a referee’s missed or controversial calls, and this time shouldn’t expect a ban because the FA will probably lump the two into one ban, and Sir Alex will get off easier than he would if the FA would take the two comments as two separate incidents. Or the FA will ignore the comments.

The FA ignores Sir Alex because football in England isn’t the same if Sir Alex isn’t roaming the sidelines, he is a star, a nemesis and an icon when he is around a game. And the FA doesn’t want to risk not having him there for the publicity.

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Giants Stumble in Europe

Daniel Agger is finally healthy. His addition to the Liverpool defense will surely be a lift because right now it is struggling to keep opponents from scoring. (Courtesy Wikicommons.

Daniel Agger is finally healthy. His addition to the Liverpool defense will surely be a lift because right now it is struggling to keep opponents from scoring. (Courtesy Wikicommons.

By Kevin Koczwara

Liverpool Lose in Florence

It is a staggering scoreline: Liverpool 0-2 Fiorentina.

Rafa Benetiz cannot explain it. Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard cannot understand or defend it. As for the defense, they have looked like Babe in the Big City all year long–they have one clean sheet, a 5-0 win against the struggling attack of Stoke. And they can’t explain their struggles.

Liverpool went into the match confident, and Fiorentina had had a few “sleepless nights” after seeing the Reds put up six easy goals against Hull in the weekend. But none of it mattered on the pitch on Tuesday as Fiorentina scored two goals in less than 10 minutes, putting the visiting Reds on their backs like a hapless turtle.

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'09-10 Premier League Predictions

Kevin Koczwara is looking at the top competitors for the EPL trophy and picking a winner. His pick is sadly a team he hates. (Courtesy edwin.11 flickr)

Kevin Koczwara is looking at the top competitors for the EPL trophy and picking a winner. His pick is sadly a team he hates. (Courtesy edwin.11 flickr)

By Kevin Koczwara

Champions: Manchester United

I just can’t pick against two time defending champions. Manchester United just has too much depth. Their squad lost a world player of the year, but still have that champion’s swagger, Sir Alex Ferguson, and a bench full of players that could start at just about any club in the world.

The depth is what really seals this pick up for me. No matter how many stones I throw into wishing wells for Liverpool’s first league title in 19 years, I just can’t pick them to take over the top spot. United can play for the FA Cup, Carling Cup, the EPL and Champions League with strong squads for every match with a different starting 11, and not many clubs in the world (other exception being Barcelona) can boast about that.

Top Four: (1) Manchester United, (2) Liverpool, (3) Chelsea, (4) Arsenal

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