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Postby Miss Dangerous » Thu Mar 22, 2007 3:31 am

FCBinNYC wrote:I'd have to disagree with Boateng on that one. Why shouldn't you try to hold on to the ball and keep it away from your goal when there's two minutes left and you have a 1-0 lead? Football is all about results, especially in the FA Cup. At least United wasn't playing with 11 men behind the ball in those last two minutes, Ronaldo got took out somewhat close to the corner flag if memory serves correct. If he can hold on to the ball like that he should do it, Boateng's just mad cuz once again Middlesbrough has no chance of silverware this season. If Ronaldo played on his team and did the same thing, I guarantee that he'd have absolutely no problem with it.


You`re so right! :idea: and I agree with you 100%. I`m not saying that Ronaldo is so perfect and the best at all!! I said he`s one of the best and he could improve in the future.. `cause he`s so talented and smart and knows what he wants! his personalty will help him a lot. we all saw how he played in the World Cup and I guess it`s one of the reasons why he has improved a lot this season. especially when it comes to the team work.
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Postby Miss Dangerous » Thu Mar 22, 2007 3:50 am

With the newly built stadium finally open, coach Steve McClaren held a training session at the new venue for Saturday's Euro 2008 qualifying game.

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With his job on the line after a run of poor performances, McClaren needed something special to motivate his players and get them back on track for the European Championship.

Wednesday's outing at Wembley might be just what they needed.

The famous Wembley Twin Towers are now gone. The new eye-catching feature is a giant tilting arch that is 133 metres high at the centre and stretches over the length of the stadium. The stadium has a partially retractable roof which can be closed in extremes of bad weather.

For Gareth Barry and Kieron Dyer, the day brought back memories of the national team's last game at the famous old stadium, which was knocked down in 2001. They were on the lineup that lost 1-0 at home to Germany in a World Cup qualifying game Oct. 7, 2000, a defeat that prompted coach Kevin Keegan to quit.

For younger stars such as Wayne Rooney, it was their first Wembley experience.

Calgary-raised Owen Hargreaves, who plays in Germany for Bayern Munich, also had his first taste of the Wembley arena and playing surface.

The first 15 minutes of training was open to the media. The remainder of the session was carried out in private after the reporters, photographers and TV crews were asked to leave.

The 800-million-pound (C$1.82 billion) 90,000-capacity stadium should have been open more than a year ago. But the construction and opening have been delayed several times largely because of legal disputes between the Australian constructors Multiplex and Wembley National Stadium Limited.

The stadium will be used Saturday for an under-21 friendly between England and Italy and, if that goes smoothly, should get the go-ahead to host the May 19 FA Cup final. Since the old stadium was demolished, English's soccer showpiece has been staged at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium.

Liverpool midfielder Steven Gerrard made it to Wembley after receiving an award from the Queen at Buckingham Palace. Gerrard, who led Liverpool to its fifth Champions League triumph in 2005, received the MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) for services to soccer.

England lost 2-0 at Croatia after a tame 0-0 draw at home to Macedonia last October to slip to third in the Group E standings. McClaren's team is three points behind leader Croatia, one behind Russia. Only two teams qualify from each group.

"We've got a good squad and I think we need to start doing the talking on the field," McClaren said during the buildup to Wednesday's practice session. "That means displacing Croatia and Russia from the summit of Group E in order to reach the 2008 finals.

"There is ability, potential in that side to be better than we are at the moment and we know that and we've got to go out and prove it."


England's midfield is boosted by Hargreaves' return from a broken leg. Although he was named in the squad for last month's 1-0 loss at Spain at Old Trafford, he didn't play.

"I think I've shown what I can bring to a team," said Hargreaves, who was one of the few impressive England performers at last year's World Cup. "Hopefully I can bring some energy into the midfield, give the back four some support, keep a clean sheet and, obviously with the players we have going forward, get them the ball positions where they can create chances and hopefully score some goals."

Hargreaves is expected to play alongside Gerrard, Frank Lampard and Aaron Lennon in midfield. McClaren is likely to field Rooney and either Everton's Andy Johnson or Tottenham's Jermain Defoe in attack.

The England coach has had to make changes in defence, however. With fullbacks Gary Neville and Wayne Bridge ruled out through injury, Micah Richards doubtful and Ashley Cole suspended for the game, McClaren has called up Aston Villa's Barry and Charlton's Luke Young.
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Postby Miss Dangerous » Thu Mar 22, 2007 3:53 am

England players warm up during the England training session at the new Wembley Stadium:
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Postby FC Bajern » Thu Mar 22, 2007 4:32 am

And I was wondering were the English team is going to warm up,Image I couldn't even sleep at night... yeah
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Postby Miss Dangerous » Thu Mar 22, 2007 2:25 pm

FC Bajern wrote:And I was wondering were the English team is going to warm up,Image I couldn't even sleep at night... yeah


Don`t bother yourself! now you know.. finally!!!! :P
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Postby Miss Dangerous » Thu Mar 22, 2007 4:55 pm

It is back to Wembley this season for the FA Cup final, the first domestic showdown that the new temple of the English game will host after an absence of six years - 2001 to 2006.

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Six FA Cup finals were played at the Millennium Stadium. The venue in Cardiff witnessed the innovation of a penalty shoot-out to determine the winners after finals had finished all square following extra time.

Actually, the last two finals were decided with a shoot-out from the deadly spot.

The victors at Cardiff were:

2006: Liverpool beat West Ham 3-1 on penalties after a 3-3 draw (Gerrard 2, Cisse - Ashton, Konchesky, Carragher og).

2005: Arsenal beat Manchester 5-4 on penalties after a 0-0 draw.

2004: Manchester United-Millwall 3-0 (Van Nistelrooy 2, Ronaldo).

2003: Arsenal-Southampton 1-0 (Pires).

2002: Arsenal-Chelsea 2-0 (Parlour, Ljungberg).

2001: Liverpool-Arsenal 2-1 (Owen 2 - Ljungberg).

Those who scored at Wembley have always been cherised and remembered. The trek of such Wembley goalpoachers takes readers from David Jack, of Bolton Wanderers, to Chelsea's Roberto Di Matteo.

Bolton were the first FA Cup winners at Wembley. They beat West Ham United by two clear goals, on April 28, 1923.

The 2000 final was a clash between Chelsea and Aston Villa. The Londoners won the cup 1-0 thanks to Italian midfielder Di Matteo's goal.

That final ended 77 years of FA Cup finals at the majestic stadium in London. Di Matteo's netting was the 215th goal scored at Wembley in FA Cup finals.
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Postby Miss Dangerous » Wed Apr 18, 2007 5:32 pm

They are competitive and I believe the Premiership is going to go down to the wire as Manchester United still have to play Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

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There is a lot of top-class entertainment to come but Manchester United are in a good position in the sense that they have an extra point in terms of their goal difference.

It keeps it tight and ensures that everyone is on their toes. I think it is boring when teams are winning the league by 20 points as there is nothing really left to play for.

Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool are in the Champions League semi-finals and it is going to be an interesting end to the season.

It would be quite remarkable if Manchester United and Chelsea played each other in the Champions League final as well as contesting the league and FA Cup.

There is still a lot of football left to be played but both clubs have put themselves in an incredibly good position.

You have to take your hat off to them as it is very difficult to do that.

People might be amazed at how Chelsea keep digging out results but that is the mark of a good team and that is why they are still in every competition.

It's not a coincidence. All those teams who say they were unlucky and deserved more - it's a load of rubbish.

You get what you deserve and when you have good players, experience and talent it shows.

Mentality also plays a part. Manchester United and Chelsea have a positive mentality instilled at their clubs.

Source: BBC News
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Postby Miss Dangerous » Wed Apr 18, 2007 6:34 pm

Neil Warnock is never slow to express his grievances about officials but last night the Sheffield United manager had a genuine case when he departed this stadium frustrated about a poor refereeing decision. Manchester United stretched their lead at the top of the Premiership to six points before Chelsea's fixture at West Ham tonight but a comfortable victory might not have been so routine had Rob Styles awarded Warnock's side a clear-cut penalty in the second half.

Luton Shelton cut inside Kieran Richardson before Gabriel Heinze hacked down the Jamaican international as he prepared to shoot. Manchester United were already two goals to the good at the time but Warnock could be forgiven for believing a penalty might have given his side late hope. "It's difficult to upset Sir Alex [Ferguson]," said the Blades manager. "It's not just 75,000 fans but Sir Alex on the touchline. It's going to take something to get things here."
Warnock felt that the referee, who awarded Liverpool a dubious penalty on the opening day of the season at Bramall Lane, should have consulted his assistant before making the decision. Styles did not, with the Sheffield United manager claiming that the official told him afterwards that he wanted "sole" responsibility for awarding the spot-kick. "It's disappointing," added the visitors' manager.

"You hope that you get the big decisions. I have spoken to Rob and he said that he couldn't 100% give a penalty. My complaint to him was that surely he should have been able to look across to the linesman who was also in a good position; between them they should have got it right. Rob said that it was his decision and that he didn't want the linesman to come into it. He insisted it was solely his decision. I don't understand.

"The ball came across the goal from Shelton's touch. If Heinze had got contact it would have gone towards the goalkeeper. Obviously I'll be seeking from people why he can't consult with the linesman. When you watch him he waved his hands across his chest and decided it wasn't a penalty straight away. To me he did that too quickly. All I'm asking for is decisions to be consistent."


Ferguson admitted his side might have been fortunate with the decision but claimed they deserved "a bit of luck". This was form far from a vintage United display, with the home team showing only glimpses of the free-flowing football that brought 11 goals in their previous two matches. Michael Carrick's fourth-minute strike suggested another rout but it was not until five minutes after the interval that a second United goal arrived, Wayne Rooney splendidly converting.

Ferguson described the performance as "economical", also noting: "We didn't kill ourselves and that was important." He reported that Rio Ferdinand and John O'Shea, both missing here, will be back for Saturday's visit of Middlesbrough, but he will not know until Patrice Evra has a scan this morning whether the full-back, substituted in the first half after collapsing under Colin Kazim-Richards's clumsy challenge, faces a spell on the sidelines.

As United continue to chase the league title their pursuit of Owen Hargreaves might be coming to an end, with the Premiership leaders understood to be close to reaching a formal arrangement with Bayern Munich. David Gill, United's chief executive, is believed to have come to a verbal agreement with the England midfielder's club, and Ferguson was also encouraged after he visited Munich for last week's Champions League tie.

The United manager's immediate focus turns to tonight's fixture at Upton Park where he will hope that Chelsea slip up, as United did earlier in the season
, against West Ham. Even without an upset, the title remains in United's hands. "[The players] are showing great resilience and temperament," said Ferguson. "It doesn't matter what team I pick - and I am making changes - they are up for it all the time."
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Postby Miss Dangerous » Wed Apr 18, 2007 7:24 pm

Michael Carrick's smartly taken goal put Manchester United on their way to a victory against Sheffield United which restored their Premiership lead over Chelsea to six points — but their injury curse struck again at Old Trafford.

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Carrick gave Sir Alex Ferguson’s men the perfect start after four minutes when he tucked home Cristiano Ronaldo’s astute through-ball.

But, with their defensive resources already so thin that Darren Fletcher had to start at right back, United lost Patrice Evra, the victim of a crude lunge by Colin Kazim-Richards.

The leaders — who have played one game more than Chelsea, visitors to West Ham tonight — also had Alan Smith and Wayne Rooney booked in the first half by referee Rob Styles for rash tackles. Ronaldo was shown a yellow card midway through the second half after an altercation with Chris Morgan.

Rooney eased the pressure on United with a fierce cross-shot past Paddy Kenny after being released by Ryan Giggs five minutes into the second half.

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United received a further boost yesterday with news that Bayern Munich have finally told them they are ready to sell Owen Hargreaves this summer.

Ferguson met Bayern officials last week when he was in Bavaria for the German club’s Champions League semi-final loss to Milan and returned to report that the deal is now a relative formality.

Bayern have told Ferguson they will do the deal for the England midfielder as soon as the season is over, as long as United meet their asking price of £18million
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United wanted to sign Hargreaves last summer and, although Bayern held out that time, the midfielder’s desire to move to Old Trafford is such that the Bundesliga club have decided to cash in.
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Postby tracylynn » Wed Apr 18, 2007 7:52 pm

Me thinks you're a Man. United fan. :roll: Gosh, I'm hating them more and more.
Raider (1996-2007) - A very lovable cat that I will miss dearly.
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Postby FC Bajern » Wed Apr 18, 2007 8:39 pm

tracylynn wrote:Me thinks you're a Man. United fan. :roll: Gosh, I'm hating them more and more.

Me thinks the same
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Italian Football

Postby Miss Dangerous » Thu Apr 19, 2007 10:15 pm

Inter Milan will be determined to prove the midweek loss to Roma that delayed their title celebrations was only a blip by beating Siena on Sunday.

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The Serie A leaders' defeat — their first since going down 2-0 to Bayern Munich in the Champions League group stage in September — ended their hopes of an unbeaten league season.

But with a 13-point advantage over second-placed Roma, Roberto Mancini's side need only six points from their final six games to wrap up the 15th scudetto in the club's history.
They could clinch the title on Sunday if they win at Siena and Roma lose away to Atalanta.

"We were like a tennis player who goes to play match point and suddenly feels frightened of winning," said Mancini after the defeat.

"We played as though the handbrake was on — not just one player, but all of them — and Roma took advantage because they are a strong side."

Last year Inter were awarded the scudetto in July after the season was over when a sports tribunal revoked Juventus's title win in the fallout from the country's match-fixing scandal.

Inter's Dejan Stankovic said the expectations of the San Siro crowd, who hoped to see the team lift the trophy on the pitch for the first time since 1989, affected the performance.

"There was a lot of tension and we felt it. Playing for the title in front of our fans made us feel like we had weights on our legs," said the midfielder after Wednesday's defeat.

He denied there was any chance of Inter throwing the title away. "The celebrations are only postponed. We're certainly not going to dwell too much on this defeat," he said.

Inter's form has done little to steady their fans' nerves. Having looked invincible for much of the season, they have appeared oddly fragile in their last three games.

Defeat to Roma followed draws against Reggina and Palermo leading some to suggest the players are suffering burn-out.

Mancini, however, insisted the problem was in the players' heads, not their legs.

"They went into the match (against Roma) filled with the stuff people have been saying in the last few days — that the title was already won, that we had a 16-point lead…

"If our lead had only been six points, maybe the match would have finished quite differently,"
he said.

Roma have scored seven goals in their last two Serie A matches and are expected to keep up the pressure on Inter with a win against Atalanta.

Siena are unlikely to provide a serious obstacle to Inter's drive for the title, however.

Meanwhile, third-placed Lazio face a difficult home match against Fiorentina, who are pushing for a UEFA Cup place.

Neither side is in great form.

Lazio have drawn their last two league games against relegation-threatened sides Ascoli and Chievo Verona, while Fiorentina's 11-game unbeaten run ended on Wednesday, when they slumped to a 2-0 defeat at Parma.

If Lazio lose, they could find fourth-placed AC Milan breathing down their necks. The Serie A giants, who host Cagliari on Saturday, are in their best shape of the season and hit five goals past Ascoli in midweek.

However, several of Milan's leading players, includign Kaka, are likely to be rested ahead of next Tuesday's Champions League semi-final against Manchester United.

"The win is a good sign ahead of our trip to play United,"
said Ancelotti. "We've got to continue on this road and save our energy. Kaka, for example, will be rested against Cagliari".

Source: Last Kick
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Postby Miss Dangerous » Thu Apr 19, 2007 10:22 pm

Manchester United striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says he is likely to retire at the end of next season.

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The 34-year-old intends to see out his current contract with United, which runs until June 2008.

But when asked if he could see a future beyond next season, Solskjaer told Norwegian newspaper VG: "No.

"I'll most likely stay at United. I've one year left on my contract and I'm aiming to do as well as possible to carry on."


He added: "I'll have to see how I feel. I could suddenly say enough is enough, but I'll stay here next year in any case."

The Norwegian spent the best part of three seasons on the sidelines as he battled knee problems.

Despite fears that he would be forced to retire, Solskjaer returned to full fitness in July last year and has made 27 appearances for United this season.

"I'm almost certain I'll be better next season. Then I'll have this season behind me after two or three years out," he said.

"I'll be able to play at a higher level."
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Postby Miss Dangerous » Thu Apr 19, 2007 10:39 pm

Roma captain Francesco Totti scored on a 25-meter (yard) free kick in the 88th minute at San Siro - with the ball deflecting off Inter's Luis Figo - and Marco Cassetti added another goal for Roma in injury time, handing Inter its first league loss of the season.

"Everyone was acting like the season is already over, and it's true. But when you're about to close it out you get a little afraid," Inter coach Roberto Mancini said. "It's like a tennis player trying to win the last few points of a match."

"We were hoping to finish the season unbeaten, but delaying the party isn't a problem," Mancini said.

Roma midfielder Simone Perrotta opened the scoring by redirecting a cross from Christian Chivu from one meter in the 44th and Marco Materazzi equalized for Inter in the 52nd with a controversial penalty. Roma goalkeeper Alexander Doni was called for tripping Adriano but replays showed minimal contact.
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Postby Miss Dangerous » Thu Apr 19, 2007 11:03 pm

Arsenal leapfrogged Liverpool into third place in the Premiership after securing a 3-1 victory over Manchester City at the Emirates Stadium. The Gunners moved above the Reds after PFA Player of the Year nominee Cesc Fabregas inspired a second-half revival with a superb 25-yard effort, before Julio Baptista wrapped things up late on.

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It was, though, far from an easy second victory in four days for the hosts, who were pegged back for long periods by a determined City side after Tomas Rosicky had swept Arsenal into an early lead.

With Liverpool in action against Middlesbrough at Anfield on Wednesday, the Gunners could well soon be back in fourth spot.

For now, though, Arsene Wenger and his squad will relish another morale-boosting victory following what has been a troubled two months.

City started brightly and inside five minutes Beasley saw a shot blocked by Kolo Toure after good work by Darius Vassell.

Despite plenty of positive approach play - much of which involving Fabregas in his 50th game of the season - the home side were again frustrated by some resolute defending.

But the home side broke through in the 12th minute, after Abou Diaby won a crunching tackle 30 yards out, and took the ball to the edge of the box before pushing it wide to Emmanuel Eboue on the right.

The full-back whipped over a teasing cross through the six-yard box, Nedum Onuoha hesitated at the far post and Rosicky stole in to volley his second goal of the week.

City refused to lay down though and Vassell continued to cause problems with his pace down the flanks as Joey Barton saw more of the ball.

With 23 minutes gone, there was a lengthy stoppage as Diaby had to be patched up after receiving a nasty gash above his eye following an accidental boot in the face from City skipper Richard Dunne as the Arsenal man slid into a tackle.

Fabregas almost picked out a run into the box from William Gallas, but Dunne was on hand to put the ball behind for a corner.

Despite the best efforts of the Arsenal medical staff, Diaby - his head heavily bandaged - was unable to continue further after battling on bravely for a few minutes.

Brazilian Baptista, on-loan from Real Madrid, replaced the Frenchman after half an hour.

Fabregas unleashed a stinging 25-yard effort, which City keeper Andreas Isaksson beat away to his right, before the visitors levelled in the 41st minute.

Goalkeeper Jens Lehmann made a hash of his clearance, and Barton fed Michael Johnson - who weaved to the edge of the penalty area to set up Beasley for a cool finish.

Lehmann then pushed an angled drive from Barton behind as the visitors went on the offensive at the end of the first half.

Arsenal started the second half in determined mood, but again too often lacked a telling ball when in promising positions around the City penalty area.

Dietmar Hamann blocked Fabregas' drive from the edge of the penalty area, with City getting 10 men behind the ball every time Arsenal looked to attack.

Barton sent a low effort on target from 18 yards as dogged City sensed an upset, before Emmanuel Adebayor latched onto a long punt upfield and got in behind the defence on the left.

However, the angle was too tight and Isaksson deflected the ball away at his near post.

Arsenal had a golden chance to take the lead when Rosicky dashed into the left side of the penalty area and cut the ball back to Adebayor on the penalty spot - but Onuoha made a fantastic block.

The Togo striker went close again when Isaksson saved his downward header from a right-wing cross by Hleb.

But the Gunners eventually took the lead in the 73rd minute.

City failed to clear their lines, and as the ball dropped to Fabregas some 25 yards out, the Spain midfielder sent a brilliant strike past Isaksson for his second goal of the week.

It was soon game over as Arsenal went 3-1 ahead with 10 minutes left.

Alexander Hleb weaved into the right side of the area and stabbed the ball towards the penalty box, where Baptista swept it into the bottom corner.

Lehmann saved well from substitute Georgios Samaras after the City striker had bundled his way into the area, to ensure there would be no nervous ending for the hosts.
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