"Hopefully we can come back to celebrate more titles this season." | 17-04-14
Who will win Serie A’s Europa League race?
This season has again seen Juventus powerfully dominate the Italian top flight with Roma following closely behind. Napoli too seem to be almost sure of a Champions League spot, whilst Fiorentina also will finish in Europe as they face the Neapolitans in the Coppa Italia final.
This leaves the Europa League places up for grabs and with fifth and sixth place allowing for teams to feature in the competition, the battle is heating up. The final two places will seemingly be fought out between five teams, all with a good argument to say that they deserve one of the spots.
Inter are sitting at the top of the pile in fifth spot and perhaps would be the book makers favourites to qualify. Their last game saw them thrash Sampdoria away 0-4 and on the face of it that would suggest that they will finish strongly. Closer examination however, shows up three draws and a win in their last four games, twice here it should be noted they threw away good leads. The fixture list ahead is also daunting as they face fellow hopefuls Parma, Napoli, Milan and Lazio before the end. The Nerazzurri could go into their last game against to Chievo already out of the hunt.
Parma are two points behind Inter and by their own admission have had a great season. Unbeaten from November until the end of March their run was brought to an end by Juventus. This caused a minor breakdown in their European dream as they fell victim to double defeats in Rome, as Lazio and Roma both rolled over them. Some form has been brought back as they beat Napoli and drew with Bologna but the next game against Inter is key. Should they beat the Nerazzurri then only Torino and perhaps Sampdoria could hamper their chances between now and the end of the season.
Torino are on 48 points just three outside the qualification places. They have had a majestic season with the front two, Circo Immobile and Alessio Cerci forming a deadly partnership. There goals have kept ‘Toro’ in with a fighting chance recording three wins in their last three. The fixtures ahead are a mixture however, as they have to face Lazio, Parma and Fiorentina before the end of the campaign.
By their own admission Milan’s season has been shambolic. Clarence Seedorf has steadied the ship to a degree but is still under immense scrutiny and is perhaps not expected to be in his role next summer. Much may depend on his ability to qualify for Europe, a task which has seemed beyond them for most of the campaign. Four wins in four may suggest that fans should sit up and take note but the nature of the wins suggest otherwise. Their displays have not suggested that they are a team that can maintain this momentum and with games against Roma, the derby against Inter and a tough away tie against Atalanta it would be a surprise if they made it through.
Lazio are also sitting on 48 points and are in mixed form. Two wins, a draw and two defeats in their last five suggest that they may not have the legs to make it to the European places but they have an outside chance. If they manage to beat Torino in their next match at home they will have Livorno and Hellas Verona to face before a game against Inter who themselves will be coming off the back of some tough fixtures. The way in which the Romans matches pan out just may see them gain some momentum.
To predict is quite simply to guess this season as it is at the end of most campaign. Form often goes out of the window and when teams suddenly have nothing to play for then the nature of some games change. The romantics would have Parma and Torino charging into Europe on the back of a nostalgic wave. The realist would perhaps prefer the two Milan clubs due to the sustainability of a challenge and in turn the coefficient.
By Richard Hall
Follow me on Twitter @Gentleman_Ultra
Capturing American Fútbol: From Tijuana to Rio
Four friends of the AFR Team, Pete, Petar, Sam & Austin, have decided to take a trip from Los Angeles to Brazil, and they’ll be capturing everything (North, Central and South) American fútbol along the way. For their first stop on the way to Brazil, they spent a week in Tijuana profiling Los Xolos and their role in changing the perception of the world’s most busiest border town. Find their first dispatch here and follow their journey here.
"Football is a form of culture, made in and by the collective watching of the event, the follow-up argument and analysis, the folklore that is passed down from generations. It is soap opera on grass, providing main narratives, sidelines, unlikely diversions, wonderful arrays of character" - The Cambridge Companion to Football
Matchdays at BC Place Stadium (Vancouver Whitecaps FC)
TIME TRAVEL @ YETEP
Was going to wait till tomorrow to post this but its 11:11 so why not. Thank you for all the support as always. If you enjoy this mix please like, share, reblog, follow my soundcloud, w/e~ it really helps. thanks! AND MY WISH IS ……. Oh & also check out my remix (Above & Beyond - On A Good Day Remix) ;)
Stadiumx & Taylr Renee - Howl At The Moon (Original Mix)
Subfocus - Turn Back Time (Steerner Bootleg)
Mat Caseli - It Starts Now (Original Mix)
R3hab & Deorro - Flashlight
Sunday Funday - Fracture (Krunk! Remix)
Joel Fletcher vs Cazzette (TJR Mashup)
Whyel - Rayban
Bassjackers - Crackin (Martin Garrix Edit)
Martin Garrix & Jay Hardway - Wizard (Steerner Bootleg)
Avicii - Addicted To You (Avicii Remix)
Mako - Beam (Dannic Remix) w/ Center Of The Universe
Julian Calor - Typhoon w/ Human
Syn Cole - Miami 82 (Avicii Edit)
Alesso - Clash
Kaskade - Feelin The Night
Laidback Luke & Angger Dimas feat. Polina - Night Like This (Dyro Remix)
Deadmau5 - Strobe