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Old 09-04-18, 03:17   #1
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Default Champions League Qtr Finals (2nd Legs) 10/04/2018 - 11/04/2018

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Old 09-04-18, 04:04   #2
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-Man City v Liverpool-

Man City proved in their derby game over the weekend that they haven't lost their scoring touch taking a 2-0 lead into HT, but it could have been much more if not for some horrible finishing by Sterling. This should give City some confidence that they are in with a chance, particularly given they won 5-0 against Liverpool in the league game earlier in the year, albeit with a man advantage. The return of Aguero is also a big boost, while I would expect to see Pep start Sterling or Silva on the right, after playing it safe in the 1st leg with Gundogan.

Klopp will know that he can't just sit and defend this one, despite restricting City to 0 shots on target in the 1st leg. It's expected that the front 3 of Mane, Salah and Fermino will all start, so plenty of threat of the counter for Liverpool.

Historically anyone who knows Liverpool's european history knows that they are a team full of drama and it would be surprising to me to see this club cruise to the semis. Therefore I'll definitely have some of CS 3-0 Man City at odds around 14.00 and if I can multi that in with Liverpool to go through on ET/penalties I reckon that could look pretty juicy.

The above bet will also act as insurance for my main bet of over 3.5 goals at 1.98

-Roma v Barcelona-

While neither team will openly admit it, both teams will be of the mindset that this tie is over and I think that could flow through to the way both teams play. On top of that, Barcelona have drawn their last 3 away games in the CL which leads me to believe there is a good chance we could see another in this game. Therefore I'll take CS 0-0 and CS 1-1 at 19.00 and 8.00 respectively and Roma +1 on AH
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Old 10-04-18, 11:31   #3
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As long as Liverpool can suffocate City and nip all attacks in the bud, I do not see them losing this game.
Salah was training with the team. If all three will start, I expect goals from Liverpool.
GL!
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Old 10-04-18, 12:47   #4
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Over 2.5 corners for Liverpool @1.57 and Man City over 1.5 goals @1.40 = @2.19 (bet365)
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Old 10-04-18, 12:57   #5
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Man City - Liverpool

Everyone expecting goals and it is logical, given the teams involved. Yet, I don't expect open game from Liverpool. Clearly remember Klopp in similar scenario - few years ago he won 4:1 vs Real Madrid with BVB and in the return leg Dortmund, which was a very attacking minded in his spell, played very compact and defensive football, and the Germans managed to suffocate Real Madrid pressure (game ended 2:0 with a late 2nd goal for Madrid).

In this game BVB were untypically pressing Real not deep in the opposition half ("geggen pressing") but around 10 meters inside BvB own half. The whole team stayed compact and sacrificed counter-attacking impulse, in order to secure solid defending.

I am sure Klopp will use similar approach. Of course, it is never certain how successful it will be, especially given Liverpool defensive woes.

I think the best bet here is Man City to reach 9 corners first @ 1.90 (bet 365)

The reasons are:
> City are chasing 3 goal deficit
> City produce enormous amount of corners, especially in home games. Even in games when City takes early lead, they frequently reach 9-10 corners. Now they have to recover 3 goals, so I expect corners flying here and there for City
> Liverpool expected to sit back and close the center in front of the penalty area, so City very likely will attack mostly from the flanks
> In the first leg City sacrificed a winger (Sterling) for center midfielder (Gundogan). Yet, they still produced many corners (8 corners, I reckon). Now they will play with their typical formation with Sane and Sterling on both flanks.

I personally expect City to go well above this line - probably 14-15 corners might be reached.
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Old 10-04-18, 13:07   #6
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Roma - Barcelona

It is game over for Roma. The Wolves know they stand no chance and they got trouble in Serie A - their CL place is in danger. I don't think they will rotate, they will with full strength, but I clealry expect them to play with lower intensity than usual.

Barca this season is the most unusual Barca I have ever seen. They look like Italian team from the 1980s and early 1990s. Playing with minimal intensity, saving effort, focusing on keeping clean sheets and winning with 2:0. The only high scoring game I can recall lately was against Girona, but it was due to Girona's suicidal tactics of high defense line (like Rayo Valecano under PAco Jemez), not due to Barca putting some big effort.

Okay, this is not attractive Barca to watch, but I understand manager Valverde. The team was left by the directors with short bench and no real alternative of super star Neymar. Dembele got injured early on and missed most of the season, but even now it is obvious this boy is miles below the level of Neymar. So, Valverde had to deal with substantial downgrade in Barca attacking quality after Neymar left.

Also, the team is aging. Iniesta, for instance, is a magician and a genius, but he cannot run with the same intensity like before. He didn't get enough rotation before the arrival of Coutinho. Bench guys like Andre Gomez (Litost ), Denis Suarez etc proved to be a complete waste and totally useless. In addition, Luis Suarez is not having his best season - maybe due to the new formation and to the absence of Neymar to back him.

The bottom line is Valverde had to go with this energy saving tactical approach, even if it is ugly. Otherwise, Barca would not have been able to maintain good tempo throughout the competition.

Tonight I expect nothing different from Blaugranas. They got the 1/2 finals in their pockets, they won't "run for their lives". Slow, controlled football - this is what we will see from Barcelona.


Under 3 Goals @ 2.10

Last edited by Miccho; 10-04-18 at 13:23.
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Old 10-04-18, 13:18   #7
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Roma - Barcelona

It is game over for Roma. The Wolves know they stand no chance and they got trouble in Serie A - their CL place is in danger. I don't think they will rotate, they will with full strength, but I clealry expect them to play with lower intensity than usual.

Barca this season is the most unusual Barca I have ever seen. They look like Italian team from the 1980s and early 1990s. Playing with minimal intensity, saving effort, focusing on keeping clean sheets and winning with 2:0. The only high scoring game I can recall lately was against Girona, but it was due to Girona's suicidal tactics of high defense line (like Rayo Valecano under PAco Jemez), not due to Barca putting some big effort.

Okay, this is not attractive Barca to watch, but I understand manager Lopetegiu. The team was left by the directors with short bench and no real alternative of super star Neymar. Dembele got injured early on and missed most of the season, but even now it is obvious this boy is miles below the level of Neymar. So, Lopetegui had to deal with substantial downgrade in Barca attacking quality after Neymar left.

Also, the team is aging. Iniesta, for instance, is a magician and a genius, but he cannot run with the same intensity like before. He didn't get enough rotation before the arrival of Coutinho. Bench guys like Andre Gomez (Litost ), Denis Suarez etc proved to be a complete waste and totally useless. In addition, Luis Suarez is not having his best season - maybe due to the new formation and to the absence of Neymar to back him.

The bottom line is Lopetegui had to go with this energy saving tactical approach, even if it is ugly. Otherwise, Barca would not have been able to maintain good tempo throughout the competition.

Tonight I expect nothing different from Blaugranas. They got the 1/2 finals in their pockets, they won't "run for their lives". Slow, controlled football - this is what we will see from Barcelona.


Under 3 Goals @ 2.10
Nice write up! Except the manager is Valverde
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Old 10-04-18, 13:22   #8
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Nice write up! Except the manager is Valverde
I am an idiot. Of course, I meant Valverde...
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Old 10-04-18, 17:00   #9
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I agree with the under tonight, seems like the most obvious play, considering Barca is a different team on the road.

The main difference with Barca this season, it's that they are more pragmatic. There are a couple of factors that have changed Barca's game and some changes were forced by the circumstances. Needless to say that Neymar's departure was a big blow, to Barca's offensive game plan. I never truly liked Neymar when he was at Barca, i only valued him as a vital part of MSN, which in hindsight will remain one of the most deadly attacking trios, that have ever played the game, especially because of their natural chemistry. Apart from that, i never liked his behavior on the field, his lack of respect for some opponents, his impulsivity, that hurt the team more than once, while his outside the pitch behavior was no better. So Barca were totally blindsided by his departure and made a panic move, in signing Dembele, whom they've already shown interest in the previous season, but Dembele refused them to go and work with Tuchel, in Dortmund. After Tuchel was fired from BVB and Dembele heard of Barca's interest, he forced his transfer by not training. This proved to be a mistake from his part, since he joined Barca without a proper preseason training and got injured fairly quickly. Dembele's injuries, because after the first one he got injured again and basically played just a few games in the first part of the season, changed the dynamic of the team. This situation is what forced Valverde to go from the classic 4-3-3 to a 4-4-2, which proved to be a challenge at times, cause Don Andres also had some problems and missed some games, leaving Valverde with very few attacking options. Barca is dependent on having a creative midfielder, besides the obvious dependency of Messi, but with Coutinho's arrival it seems that void will be filled, also this may mean Don Andres will leave the team at the end of the season, although he signed a lifetime contract with Barca, his final answer will come at then on this month.

All these things explain why Barca hasn't been so dominant in their victories, also the schedule was kinda brutal this year, especially in January and February having reached the Cup Final and playing all those games. There is a silver lining to all this, Barca can really and properly defend nowadays and haven't made the silly mistakes from the last couple of seasons, maybe except for the recent game at Sevilla, although that game showed another thing that Barca was capable this season, to come from behind and salvage a point, or even win the game, like in some other occasions.

So unless Roma manages to score early here and put pressure on Barca, i don't see a lot of goals, Barca is a whole different beast nowadays and with the approaching end of the season they will save energy and be even more pragmatic, down the stretch.
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Old 10-04-18, 20:48   #10
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1-0 at 3rd ...GAME ON !!


..... and 1-0 !! ... GAME ON ?


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Old 10-04-18, 21:44   #11
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I really hope that now, that Liverpool survived this storm, we will see a different second half.
With a more dangerous Liverpool, I mean.
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Old 10-04-18, 22:36   #12
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Bravo Roma Bravooooooo 3-0... Respect!
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Old 10-04-18, 22:39   #13
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ROOOMAAAAAA !!!! <3 <3 <3 Off to Barcelona forum hahahahaha

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Old 10-04-18, 22:42   #14
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This has to be the biggest humiliation and failure in Barca's history

I wrote they didn't make silly mistakes this season and mistakes they made: Umtiti was dreadful, lost Dzeko on the 1st goal, Pique made a dumb penalty and Semedo's display can be resumed at the 3rd goal... i dunno why Valverde waited sooo long to make some obvious changes, but overall they've played like ****...

Total disgrace and shameful performance, unbelievable...
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Old 10-04-18, 22:43   #15
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bigest upset in the history of the champions league. no one saw this coming.
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Old 10-04-18, 22:46   #16
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Shock of the season for me. Great win from Roma, great fighting and good coaching. Seriously starting to doubt this Valverde. Ok one bad game, but they had it coming: they were already lucky with what Chelsea defense offered them and not only that, in numerous games they looked so out of sorts and without any attacking ideas, just hoping for Messi miracles. This is a sad Barca to watch...
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Old 10-04-18, 22:51   #17
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no one saw this coming.
Not really...i knew they had a chance. And it's not the biggest upset ever, Barcelona is weak enough to lose 3:0 away to many teams in the world.
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Old 10-04-18, 22:51   #18
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Shock of the season for me. Great win from Roma, great fighting and good coaching. Seriously starting to doubt this Valverde. Ok one bad game, but they had it coming: they were already lucky with what Chelsea defense offered them and not only that, in numerous games they looked so out of sorts and without any attacking ideas, just hoping for Messi miracles. This is a sad Barca to watch...
It turns out you can't coach Barca with the tactics of Juve from the 1980s. All those disgraceful shitty 1:0s and 2:0s finally caught up with them. Saving effort, saving effort and eventually your players forgot how to play football.
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Old 10-04-18, 23:03   #19
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It turns out you can't coach Barca with the tactics of Juve from the 1980s. All those disgraceful shitty 1:0s and 2:0s finally caught up with them. Saving effort, saving effort and eventually your players forgot how to play football.
Indeed. Flexibility its what i like the most. Just like Klopp does. I mean this Barca used to be a trademark for speed, thunder counters and constant pressing. Ofc you can slow it down and defend and save energy when it requires like Klopp has done with City but not go rebranding the ****ing catenaccio, plus they got it wrong with transfers, that Coutinho honestly its a waste of money, nowhere near 50 mil , Dembele also overrated plus they got that ever green portuguese talent and they keep on playing: D They need to rebuilt cause Messi aint getting younger...hope Pool gets Roma they deserve another final.
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Old 10-04-18, 23:17   #20
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Ah c'mon man, this game was a fluke, they literally couldn't have played a worse game, all that could go wrong for Barca went wrong, you can't say this match represents what Barca was about this season. Dembele and Coutinho will be the future of this team, they just need time to adapt, the fact they were overpaid is because of Neymar's transfer.

You can't say after the fact someone saw this coming, without mentioning it prior to the game, that i don't believe...
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Old 10-04-18, 23:24   #21
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Ah c'mon man, this game was a fluke, they literally couldn't have played a worse game, all that could go wrong for Barca went wrong, you can't say this match represents what Barca was about this season. .
All respect, but Barca in the last few months was **** game after **** game. Some disgraceful performances like against Getafe. But most importantly, as Sirac said, the team DNA was changed into some Italian 1990s team.

Main fault is with board of directors. Legendary MEssi don't deserve such clowns to ruin his last years in top football, when he is giving his best and playing still at fantastic level, but they leave him to play with the likes of Andre Gomez, Denis Suarez etc., the mediocre Dembele and Coutinho who cannot even play in Cl (why the hell was he purchased in the winter, when Barca had already secured the title and he could not participate in Cl?!).
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Old 10-04-18, 23:29   #22
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I didnt thought it is possible, mainly cause Roma aint that strong but common Barca already lucky vs Chelsea, they were lucky in London, and they werent shining in Nou Camp neither, its just that Chelsea defending was tragic but game was equal and Chelsea is poor this season. Plus the countless routine 1-0, 2-0 wins with no spark and glamour that also speaks about this team getting old, or being poorly coached and lowering standards. I remember also Atleti game, like watching an italian derby, so much defending and Barca was on top tactically but a better Atleti would have punished them the way they parked the bus late in the game, anyway thats not how a great team wins, thats how a suffering team wins, fighting and butt squeezing. I doubt Coutinho is the future, this guy will stay max 1 season. Dembele can be a good player but he is no Neymar
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Old 10-04-18, 23:29   #23
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Ooh, Salah and Mane, immense danger to any defense.
Salah was so calm at the goal, like Messi.
Make no misunderstandings, I do not compare them, all I am saying is that the way he handled the situation, the composure reminded me of the way Messi scores.
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Old 10-04-18, 23:33   #24
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In my opinion, Dembele got mainly pace. Not a smart player, not a good finisher. Very good player for teams like BvB or Arsenal, but not a difference maker for a team like Barca.

A lot of foolish transfers in this team lately. Alcacer, Denis Suarez, Gomez, this Portuguese fluke of a right back Semedo, even Dembele is a fluke for this money paid. When you sell Neymar, you need to get somebody like Hazard or Dybala, not freaking Dembele.
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Old 10-04-18, 23:40   #25
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Legendary MEssi don't deserve such clowns to ruin his last years in top football, when he is giving his best and playing still at fantastic level,
I am afraid this is what waits for him at the World Cup as well, with this clueless Sampaoli.
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Old 10-04-18, 23:43   #26
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Amaterish referees from Spain again as they played a part in preventing a Man City comeback. Wrongly ruled out 2 perfect goals from Man City! Spanish refs should be banned! I should had checked which country the refs are from before the game and would have avoided betting on the game if the refs come from Spain.
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Old 10-04-18, 23:46   #27
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Amaterish referees from Spain again as they played a part in preventing a Man City comeback. Wrongly ruled out 2 perfect goals from Man City! Spanish refs should be banned! I should had checked which country the refs are from before the game and would have avoided betting on the game if the refs come from Spain.
What about the MC-goal? Don't you think that Sterling fauled VVD?
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Old 10-04-18, 23:48   #28
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All respect, but Barca in the last few months was **** game after **** game. Some disgraceful performances like against Getafe. But most importantly, as Sirac said, the team DNA was changed into some Italian 1990s team.

Main fault is with board of directors. Legendary MEssi don't deserve such clowns to ruin his last years in top football, when he is giving his best and playing still at fantastic level, but they leave him to play with the likes of Andre Gomez, Denis Suarez etc., the mediocre Dembele and Coutinho who cannot even play in Cl (why the hell was he purchased in the winter, when Barca had already secured the title and he could not participate in Cl?!).
But some of those displays were circumstantial, you can't expect them to steamroll over every team they play + they had a big lead in the championship, when it mattered they've played good and had solid displays.

How far does the board culpability actually go? How could have they stopped the debacle created by Neymar's departure? Imo they did the best they could, there just wasn't any other player available they could bring. Who's fault is that Suarez has struggled so much this season, that Don Andres form has diminished so much, blame the board for not foreseeing his drop of form? The board made panic decisions, but imo Dembele and Coutinho fit Barca's philosophy, but both of them were idiots for signing contracts without a release clause, you can't blame the board for that...

I get how the tactic was wrong tonight, but who do you blame for the first 2 goals? Those are individualistic mistakes, how can you control that? The whole team was dreadful, they couldn't defend, FFS they've conceded 3 goals in the prior 9 games CL games, and in one game tonight 3 without scoring?! Things are not that easy to explain.

I'm not making up excuses for them, they should be ashamed for this game, but this is not the first game and it wont be the last one they lose, but this was a once in a lifetime humiliation for them, for sure.

Dybala can't play with Messi, both of them said it and are aware of it.
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Old 11-04-18, 00:09   #29
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Wrongly ruled out 2 perfect goals from Man City!
These can be debated.

I have not checked the rules, but if the opponent not deliberately passes the ball to the player in offside position, it is offside.
And the way I saw it, Karius boxed the ball into Milner's leg from about 4-5 meters and the ball simply rebounded in front of Sane. So, the question is, if it was a controlled pass. For me it looked like he just lifted his leg towards the ball by reflex.

At the second disallowed goal Sane was clearly offside.
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Old 11-04-18, 10:07   #30
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These can be debated.

I have not checked the rules, but if the opponent not deliberately passes the ball to the player in offside position, it is offside.
And the way I saw it, Karius boxed the ball into Milner's leg from about 4-5 meters and the ball simply rebounded in front of Sane. So, the question is, if it was a controlled pass. For me it looked like he just lifted his leg towards the ball by reflex.
Come on, mate, you are inventing new rules here.
Even if I support Liverpool, this was a 100% clean goal. There is no such thing as "offside when the ball is passed from your team-mate, but not deliberately". What offside if no Man City player touched the ball at all before it reached Sane - there were two touches by Liverpool players instead. The refs just didn't see it came from MIlner leg, they thought it came from the body of the Man City player, who charged for the ball (but never got a touch on it)
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