Welcome to Issue 3 of the T100 mag, I’ll start by saying thanks to all those who have taken the time out to read the previous 2 issues, 115 views between the 2 issues so I’m well happy with those numbers, as ever if you feel I can add to this get in touch and I’ll see if I can work something out. Before getting in to this issue however I feel I need to address the burning issue at the moment in T100 and that is the new player rule/lack of rule/oversight however anyone wants to address it. I called Gurismran out yesterday on the feed after incorrectly believing a rule had been broken after his bid for Pedri Gonzalez was withdrawn and re bid at an amount over and beyond what the rest of the managers had disclosed. I thought all players entering the database were subject to the same rule as free agents, max bid disclosed and no rebidding when value increases, and following the many comments I wasn’t alone in thinking this way, It was however clarified that no rule was broken as the gentleman agreement only applies to free agents and not players added to external clubs. Whilst Gurismran broke no rules, I believe it was in poor taste and exploited the loophole we as a community were trying to block. I agree it would be hard to police but I’m sure we could give it a try, and I’m not saying thats on David Marsden to police either. It should be us as a group keeping a check on it, if you believe a manager is in the wrong soccerwiki has the dates players are added for us to quickly check. A new vote should at least be an option imo. That’s my two pennies worth on that subject.
HELLAS VERONA V REAL MADRID
Hellas welcomed fallen spanish giants Real Madrid to the Marcantonio Bentegodi stadium determined to bounce back after their defeat at home to Anderlecht in their previous outing, Real coming in to the game still undefeated this season and on a high after a great 1-0 away win at Arsenal in their last game. Real started in positive fashion and nearly worked an opening with just 3 minutes on the clock, Alexis Sanchez just firing wide after Casemiro found him in space. It took a while for Hellas to make an impact on the game, their only 2 chances of note both coming from set pieces in the first half. Gnarby was denied by a superb full length diving save from Olbak following his wicked swerving free kick, and just on the stroke of half time Guzman found space following Gnarby’s corner but again Olbak was there to deny him. 0-0 H-T. Gnarby was beginning to take a hold on the game and on 51 minutes he took down Grujic’s lofted pass and expertly controlled and volleyed in one movement but his dipping shot clipped the crossbar with Olbak beaten. Di Maria then played in Sanchez who again failed to find the scoring touch, Becker keeping the striker out. With 76 mins gone the decisive goal arrived and it was the home side who got it, Gnarby again was the man behind it, his mazy run beat the hapless Madrid defence before he laid the ball in to Politano’s path who smacked it beyond the despairing Olbak. Real Madrid responded well and twice in the final 5 minutes they had chances to equalise but that man Sanchez was twice denied by the brilliance of Becker in the home goal, Real had their chances but unfortunately they fell to Sanchez and not Beddow’s talisman Balotelli. Why never him? 1-0 and Hellas have their 1st home win in the top flight, the name of Andre Libras-Boas boomed around the stadium as the home fans revelled in their success.
SC INTERNACIONAL V ESPANYOL
Internacional took their unbeaten start to the season into their game with 100% starters Espanyol in a game which has already set the benchmark for the quality in the 2nd tier. This was a simply fantastic game of football. Internacional came out flying and it was only the heroics of Handanovic which prevented Son from putting the home side ahead after 2 minutes, Espanyol were not level for much longer though as just 60 seconds later Ben Yedder had the home fans bouncing. Rekik strolled forward before nutmegging Pellegrini and sliding a great ball to Ben Yedder who took a touch before drilling an unstoppable drive beyond Handanovic 1-0. The old saying you can score too early was proved here as for the next 30 minutes The home side were pinned back by wave after wave of Spanish attacks. It took just 11 more minutes before Espanyol had restored parity, Alcacer finishing well after great work from Quincy Promes 1-1. 2 more chances came and went for Espanyol before Pellegrini put the visitors ahead, striding through the non existent Internacional midfield before firing home low past the outstretched hand of Cillessen 1-2. Alcacer missed another chance on 29 minutes after Cillessen denied him with a smart reflex save before the keeper was left helpless on 33 minutes when the aforementioned Alcacer got the most delicate of flicks to a superb cross from Pellegrini to make it 1-3. The home side were rocking at this point but they had hope just 4 minutes later when Rekik again turned provider, playing a lovely ball over the top of a static back line leaving Draxler with all the time in the world before finishing under the despairing dive of Handanovic 2-3 and the goalscoring was done for the 1st half. 2-3 HT and we’ve all earned that half time sit down. Just 8 minutes in to the 2nd half and away we go again, Quincy Promes grabbing his 2nd assist of the game as his jinking run left defenders trailing in his wake before calmly pulling the ball back for Pellegrini to notch his 2nd. That was unfortunately the end of the scoring but not the end of the drama. Draxler should really of done better on 56 minutes but his tame shot rolled in to the grateful arms of Handanovic. The main talking point after that was the substitution of Ben Yedder on 75 mins, The striker not taking the decision well, ripping off his jersey in an act of petulance and booting a water bottle into the crowd, Roberto Downinho will not be happy at the outburst and was seen ordering Ben Yedder down the tunnel. 2-4 FT and Espanyol still have their 100% record intact. A fine away win.
CSKA MOSCOW V SPARTAK MOSCOW
The 1st Moscow derby of the season was quickly upon us in division 3 as Cska hosted their city neighbours Spartak, who came into the game with a perfect record this season. The game itself was full of passion but lacking in real quality, not that any of the 60,000 fans inside the ground seemed to care. The first real chance came on 14 minutes when Ayoze Perez played a lovely defence splitting pass through to Poloz who tried to slot the ball under the out-rushing Ospina but the keeper stood tall and blocked well. The home side were struggling to make much impression on the game and only sporadically threatened from set pieces. Sigurdsson twice delivering good balls into the area from wide free kicks which firstly Dudu and then Luan brought comfortable saves from Soria in the Spartak goal. HT 0-0. The second half started tentatively, almost as both sides were scared to make a mistake which would lead to the 1st goal. Spartak were the first to blink and Feargal Hickey made a bold double change, bringing both central midfielders of as they tried to take control of the midfield. It didn’t have the desired effect. CSKA kept coming and twice Soria saved again before Sigurdsson provided the breakthrough, he cleverly beat his man before playing in Ake who stepped on to the ball and let fly, the ball fizzing through the air before crashing in off the bar. 1-0. Again the game went into a lull after the goal as Cska defended deep, protecting what they had. The two Subs almost pulled it level for Spartak as Sanches played a neat 1-2 with Fer before drilling in a shot from the edge of the box but Ospina was equal to it and the points belong to Lee Adams and his CSKA outfit. Both sides however can be pleased with their start to the season 2 wins from 3 for both.
SAO PAULO V LILLE
Two unbeaten sides went head to head here as Sao Paulo entertained Lille. The match was a little over 10 mins in when Lille were awarded a penalty after a brain dead decision by Cook to pull Pizzi back by his shirt as he broke into the box. There seemed little immediate danger when Pizzi had the ball, he had his back to the goal and was going away from the danger zone when Cook pulled his shirt. Pizzi took the kick and Lunev in the home goal didn’t get near it, 0-1. Carzola almost added an instant 2nd but this time Lunev was equal to the shot. The hosts were level on 22 minutes though as Mario Gomez controlled a lofted ball into the box on his chest before rolling the ball back to Gregoritsch to smash beyond the despairing dive of Mirante, 1-1. The home side finished the stronger, Cueva firing over from the edge of the box before Jese forced Mirante into a fine stop. HT 1-1. The 2nd half belonged to Lille as Lunev earned his wage. Three fine saves from Pizzi and twice from Iglesias kept the sides level. Cueva was probing for the home side and had already seen a shot deflected wide when on 77 minutes he tried to catch Mirante out at his near post however the keeper was wise to the chance and saved well with his feet. Then the game turned ugly, Pereyra was becoming frustrated and he lashed out with a disgusting elbow on the tricky Cueva which left him stricken on the floor, a full on 22 man brawl followed as the ref lost control. Both benches were at it and how the ref decided just to send off the wild Pereyra is anyones guess. The powers that be at SMFA will be looking in to video footage with further sanctions a possibility. The game played out time with no further incidents and both sides maintain their unbeaten records. 1-1 FT.
WEST BROM V SPORTING CP
The long awaited battle of Nuno Bento and Joao Alves arrived as the Portuguese managers battled it off at the Hawthornes. Sporting on the back of back to back relegation’s and West Brom rebuilding from the bottom up. The game started with Sporting on the front foot, Kepa Arrizabalaga and Jhon Cordoba having their own personal battle for the first half hour. 4 times the big striker had good chances and 4 times the big keeper saved well, it was already starting to feel like these were the kind of chances that needed to be taken. Both sides were unbeaten going in to the game but Sporting were already on the back of 2 draws and their lack of cutting edge was glaringly obvious on this viewing. West Brom finally awakened to briefly threaten at the end of the 1st half, however their best two chances fell to the young full back Nuno Tavares, 1st he fired over from the edge of the box after good work from Pires and then he found space from an inswinging free kick from Malcom to force Koubek in to a save which looked easier than perhaps it was. HT 0-0. The 2nd half started just as the 1st had, kepa saving from Cordoba and that was it from a Sporting point of view, West Brom had a couple of half chances through Malcom and Pires but in truth this game was dying on its feet. The game erupted however with 4 minutes remaining as Llorente, seemingly eager to hit the showers 1st lunged from behind with both feet against Malcom, Bento and Alves traded insults on the bench as Llorente walked before the card was shown but as they were in Portuguese I couldn’t tell you what was said. There was no handshake on the full time whistle as the game finished 0-0.
A CLUB IN FOCUS…..SHAKHTAR DONETSK
Every now and again I will be compiling a club in focus section and today it’s has it’s debut in the T100 mag. The honour of its first airing is the Ukrainian club Shakhtar Donetsk.
The current manager is the original gangster himself, Scott Broon keyboard gangster living in a gangsters paradise. He took charge on the 30th December 2018 and spent the new year partying it up in Donetsk, unfortunately the partying had to stop and the hard work had to start but its been nothing but good since the Scotsman took charge. He survived a tough start at Shakhtar and finished 5th bottom in his first season, a season which included the great escape. Season 10 was Scott’s time to shine and he took Donetsk up as runners up in division 3, losing out on the title by just 1 point. And Division 2 has already been impacted by the tidy outfit Scott has moulded with 7 points from the first 3 games. Club records held by Scott include, Most league games unbeaten at 15 (10/2/19-14/4/19) and he is already attempting to beat that as their current unbeaten run is at 10 league games, that is 2 fine unbeaten runs in the same calendar year which given the competitive nature of T100 shouldn’t go unnoticed. He also holds the record for biggest away cup win in their history, a 0-6 demolishing of Udinese (28/5/2019). Consistency is the key to Donetsk’s performances and its a rarity to see a squad with no transfer banned players. Why change a working formula seems to be the key message and he has recently cameout and said no players will be leaving Ukraine in the near future.
That’s all I have time for for this issue, I was trying to fit a bit in about the youth cup but time has beaten me for now. Once again thanks for reading.