Lots of football being played at this time of year as we are in the midst of the “business end” of the season. Everything is a little condensed this year as it is a World Cup year, so it really means that the matches are coming at us left and right. Not that we mind here at One Game, One World.
In today’s Morning Kick-Off we take a trip around the globe to see some of the more interesting happenings in world football. First, a little video though from Denmark, specifically Aalborg’s 1-1 draw with SønderjyskE . Spare a thought for Aalborg goalkeeper Karim Zaza who tried to dribble past the opposition forward only to get stripped and give up the most embarassing of goals. Luckily for him, Aalborg found an equalizer late on to rescue a point.
Ouch! Though in Zaza’s defense, perhaps the pass he received was not exactly the best and it put him into some trouble. Anyway, on to he Kick-Off!
Though there are some crucial Champions’ League quarterfinal fixtures set to be played this week, forgive some us who are eagerly anticipating the El Clasico of all El Clasicos. Real Madrid will play host to Barcelona on Sunday in what could end up being a Primera Liga title decider. Both teams are deadlocked at the top of the Spanish table with 77 points, with Real ahead on goal difference. Valencia in 3rd place are 21 points off the pace, while Sevilla in 4th are 29 points from the top. These are amazing figures especially when you consider that Valencia and Sevilla are good quality sides, though a bit more inconsistent than in previous seasons.
When Real and Barca met earlier this season it was a huge match that saw it break viewing records. In Spain there were even movie theatres that sold tickets for fans to watch the game and it was marketed as if it was a movie! It should be an unbelievable match at the Bernabeu on Saturday and could signal a change of the guard in Spain again if Real were to win. If they were to lose however and go on to lose La Liga then surely it would be a season of catastrophic failure for a team that spent hundreds of millions of euros last summer to build a side capable of winning trophies. Whatever happens it should be fascinating stuff.
Good Days For Godoy
We reported on Argentine side Godoy Cruz a few weeks back and they are the revelation of the Argentine Clausura season. The unfancied side defeated Velez Sarsfield for the first time in their history at the weekend 2-1 and are withing striking distance of Independiente at the top of the table. Independiente are on 27 points and Godoy are just three behind with 24, twelve matches into the campaign. This is all the more remarkable if one considers that Godoy Cruz finished 17th in the Apertura championship a few months back.
The Argentine table has a funny look to it as it currently sees River Plate and Boca Juniors, the two biggest clubs in Argentina, in 16th and 18th place respectively. River Plate can’t score at the moment (8 goals in 12 matches) while Boca Juniors can’t stop giving up goals by the bucket load (24 conceded in 12 matches).
New Look Red Bulls
Do long-suffering New York and New Jersey MLS fans finally have a winning franchise? While it may be a bit premature to say, the New York Red Bull have begun their season in superb fashion with a couple of 1-0 victories, the latest an impressive victory away to the Seattle Sounders. Hans Backe, former Panathinaikos and Notts County manager has brought defensive solidity to MLS’ worst team last season.
There are plenty of matches left in order for things to change, however with a new stadium, Red Bull Arena things are starting to look up for the Red Bulls. The victory over Seattle snapped an abysmal run of 27 MLS regular season away matches without a victory.