De Futebol

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Flamengo lost to Atletico-PR 2-1. Mengao scored first in the eighth minute off strike by Eduardo for the quick one nil lead. Then all hell broke loose as Furacao’s Ciero scored two first half goals in the 17th minute and a PK in the 45th minute plus one to beat boo- Mengao two one. Another one bites the dust as Flamengo was pinned with another road loss in Curitiba. Boo Mengao has eight road losses. The guys are in eleventh place 37 points. We are only seven points outta the voce vai zone. Bahia is in 17th place 30 points. Whew baby this is close with only nine matches left in the season.

O Dia- O Flamengo encarou o Atlético-PR de igual para igual na Arena da Baixada, neste domingo. Saiu na frente do placar em um gol polêmico – mas legal – de Eduardo da Silva. No entanto, ainda no primeiro tempo, sofreu a virada, com dois gols de Cléo e não teve forças para buscar a reação. Luxemburgo até tentou criar alternativas para vencer o duelo, fazendo três modificações de uma só vez no time, na segunda etapa, mas não funcionou. Nem o abafa no final do duelo surtiu efeito. O Rubro-Negro carioca sucumbiu à força do Furacão dentro de casa e voltará para o Rio sem nenhum ponto na bagagem.

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Agora, o clube da Gávea recebe o Internacional, no Maracanã, na quarta-feira, às 19h30. O time paranaense, por sua vez, viaja até Santa Catarina para encarar o Criciúma, no mesmo dia e horário.

O duelo começou cercado de polêmica com a arbitragem. Canteros cruzou rasteiro, Everton chutou para o gol, a bola bateu na mão (que estava junto ao corpo) de Eduardo da Silva – em posição legal – e entrou: 1 a 0 Flamengo. Revoltados, os jogadores do Atlético-PR reclamaram muito alegando posição irregular do atacante. O juiz chegou a conversar com um dos assistentes antes de confirmar o tento. O Furacão não demorou para reagir. Dellatorre foi enfiado na grande área, limpou a marcação e bateu. A zaga salvou na linha, mas no rebote Cléo só teve o trabalho de empurrar para o fundo da rede: 1 a 1.

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O jogo era aberto. As duas equipes se lançavam à frente a todo momento. Everton quase fez belo gol. O meia arrancou, driblou dois adversários e arriscou arremate de fora da área. O arqueiro do time paranaense fez boa defesa. O Furacão respondeu em cabeçada perigosa de Dellatorre. Bady também assustou em chute colocado de média distância. Antes do fim do primeiro tempo, Marcelo, zagueiro do Fla, fez pênalti no seu xará, centroavante do Furacão. Cléo não desperdiçou a cobrança: 2 a 1.

Atrás no placar, o Rubro-Negro carioca precisou correr atrás do prejuízo na segunda etapa. Ocupava o ataque, mas não obrigava Weverton a trabalhar. O Atlético-PR explorava os espaço cedidos e saia em velocidade no contragolpe. Insatisfeito com o time, Vanderlei Luxemburgo, aos 14 minutos, decidiu fazer três mudanças de um só vez. Sacou Eduardo da Silva, Anderson Pico e Cáceres para as entradas de Nixon, João Paulo e Muralha, respectivamente.

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No entanto, quem chegou primeiro foi o Atlético-PR. Paulo Victor evitou o terceiro após chute de Natanael à queima roupa. Bady foi outro a perder ótima chance depois de cruzamento de Suelinton. O clube da Gávea brigava, buscava a pressão, mas abusava das bolas levantadas na área e não penetrava na área do Furacão. A equipe paranaense assustava nos contra-ataques, porém, pecava no último passe. Nos últimos 10 minutos, o Flamengo partiu para o abafa, o Furacão ficou retraído e conseguiu segurar a vitória na Arena da Baixada.

http://odia.ig.com.br/esporte/flamengo/2014-10-19/flamengo-sai-na-frente-do-placar-mas-permite-virada-do-atletico-pr.html

 

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De Futebol

 

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Stoke City defeated Swansea City 2-1. The win propelled the Potters into the top half of the table tenth place with eleven points. The loss dropped the Swans out of the top five into eighth place eleven points.

John Percy, The Telegraph “Jonathan Walters put the finishing touches to a memorable week to complete another dismal experience in the Potteries for Swansea City.

Walters was part of the Ireland team which stunned Germany in Gelsenkirchen on Tuesday and his first league goal of the season was enough to extend Stoke’s hoodoo over Swansea.

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Garry Monk’s stirring start to the season, which earned him the manager of the month for August, must now seem a long time ago after a fifth game without a win.

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Trips to the Britannia Stadium have always proved forgettable for Swansea and despite taking an early lead through Wilfried Bony’s penalty, they are yet to win here since securing their return to the top flight.

Stoke’s victory enabled them to recover from their chastening afternoon at Sunderland before the international break and lifted them into the top half of the table.

Swansea’s passaholics, who won their first three games, made another exhilarating start but were like assassins without bullets.

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Wayne Routledge’s clever pass released Gylfi Sigurdsson in the box but the Iceland international – who scored twice in his country’s win over the Netherlands – lost his footing after rounding Asmir Begovic.

Stoke then required Begovic to produce a fine save after another sublime counter-attack, with Ki denied at close range.

The home team did respond, with Peter Crouch having one of those afternoons where the ball seems to stick to him like industrial strength glue, but Stoke’s failure to test Lucas Fabianski was a source of frustration among the home supporters.

And after Bony was wrestled to the ground by Ryan Shawcross, a decision which appeared to be the tipping point for referee Michael Oliver, Swansea were finally ahead. It was the seventh spot kick Shawcross had conceded in six years and Bony never looked like squandering the chance to score his second goal of the season.

But just when Swansea appeared comfortable, they were left to rue a poor refereeing decision from Oliver three minutes before half-time. Angel Rangel’s pull on Victor Moses’s shirt was minimal at best but there had been enough contact for Oliver to award a second penalty.

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Charlie Adam only added to Swansea’s sense of injustice by levelling from 12 yards. Oliver left the field at half-time in the novel position of being booed by both sets of supporters.

The second half was scrappier than the first, Crouch somehow missing a header from close range in the 65th minute after Swansea failed to clear a Moses corner.

Ki had two chances to convert from four yards following a nervy moment in the Stoke area but his final shot was smothered by Begovic.

Both managers made substitutions in a bid to gain an advantage and it was Hughes’s changes which proved pivotal 14 minutes from time.

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Oussama Assaidi, on for the injured Moses, was given too much space to bend in a cross and an unmarked Walters powered his header into the corner.

That manager of the month curse is proving difficult to shift for Monk.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/competitions/premier-league/11172741/Stoke-City-2-Swansea-City-1-match-report-Jonathan-Walterss-winner-sends-Mark-Hughess-side-into-top-half.html

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De Futebol

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My guys from Arsenal are showing why we are mediocre to horrible club at best. Sides we should beat with ease we are not. My Gunners were fortunate to escape with a two all draw against Hull City at our house Emirates.

This sucks. We are watching our season slowly slip away fast. Alexis Sanchez tickle the twines in the 12th minute for quick on nil lead. The Tigers nailed the equalizer in the 17th minute. Mohamed Diame let it rip to make one all. Hull City took the lead in the 46th minute. Abel Hernández header found its mark for the 2-1 lead.

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We were saved when Danny Welbeck finally found his scoring touch in the 90th minute plus one to save our silly asses for the two all draw.

Look folks we are in a world of hurt. Yes Mesut Ozil is out. Yet with him playing we still couldn’t find the board side of a barn with a machine gun.

We are now in sixth place with eleven points. This is exactly half of the total points Chelsea has in the bank.

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The Telegraph Jonathan Liew summed it up perfectly- The relief scrawled all over the faces of Arsenal fans as Danny Welbeck scored his injury-time equaliser was short-lived: soon to be replaced by a simmering resentment. Frustration that it had come to this. They had not come to celebrate a 2-2 draw at home to Hull City.

Five words: Nacho Monreal at centre-back. This is what was always likely to happen, Arsenal fans, when Arsène Wenger named a team with a second-choice left-back in the middle of defence. Monreal was not, by some distance, the only thing wrong with Arsenal here. But somehow, he epitomised everything.

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Injuries have scythed at Arsenal for all season; for some years, in fact. But Hull, a team with injury woes of their own, who lost both their goalkeeper and striker before half-time, nevertheless did everything demanded of them and more. Could Arsenal ‘s back four, Arsenal’s manager, Arsenal’s board, say the same?

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In the week of Arsenal’s AGM, at which Arsenal’s owners were again forced to deny the existence of a large pile of unused cash under the Emirates centre circle, this was Another General Mess from Arsenal, who took the lead so effortlessly through Alexis Sanchez before proceeding just as effortlessly to throw it all away.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/competitions/premier-league/11170168/Arsenal-2-Hull-City-2-Premier-League-match-report-Danny-Welbeck-strikes-late-to-snatch-a-point-for-Gunners.html

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Amy Lawrence The Guardian added this- It shouldn’t really be a glass half full or half empty kind of debate, considering Arsenal have won a mere two games out of eight in the Premier League this season. But considering they were trailing in a fractious game as the clock ticked into stoppage time, the consolation of a draw salvaged by a late combination between Alexis Sánchez and Danny Welbeck certainly reduces the heat that was beginning to boil up inside the Emirates.

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With the season young enough for the crowd to enjoy the Autumn warmth in their T-shirts, Arsenal found themselves dealing with a defensive crisis that was waiting to happen. They didn’t deal with it particularly well, as an enterprising Hull helped themselves to two preventable goals.

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It was an odd, jerking, see-saw of a contest. Hull began in such casual mood Arsenal could have been in charge early on as they created a string of chances. Steve Harper, the veteran goalkeeper, excelled to beat down a drive from Welbeck and then tip over Santi Cazorla’s pearl of a curling shot. The initial sluggishness from the visitors was punished in virtuoso style by Sánchez in the 13th minute. A salsa run down the right propelled him into the box, and he struck early – low and lethal – to give Arsenal the lead.”

http://www.theguardian.com/football/2014/oct/18/arsenal-hull-city-premier-league-match-report

 

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De Futebol

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My guys from Arsenal are back at it later today against Hull City. This is a huge match for us as we head back to action in the EPL. I found this little diddy in The Telegraph you might find interesting. “After masterminding a 2-0 victory over Arsenal in the first leg of their Champions League last 16 tie in February, Bayern Munich manager Pep Guardiola began planning how to kill off the London club in the second leg at the Allianz Arena.

It’s noon in Munich and the team have done their morning training and listened to the second-last team talk. This is the one that strips down their opponents’ strategy, followed by a quick run through how to attack and defend corners and wide free-kicks. But Pep is still thinking about his line-up.

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He is not sure which is the better strategy: attack or control. At training the day before the match there are no clues as to the starting line-up. Pep still hasn’t decided whether they’re going out to get goals or settling for ball domination. The session doesn’t focus on either. Instead they rehearse how to defend the way that Arsenal begin their attacks from the keeper. They go over the co-ordinated movement the back line must make when the ball is being put long from the Arsenal goalkeeper.

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“We know that [Lukasz] Fabianski almost always sends the ball to his right,” Carles Planchart, one of Guardiola’s scouts and tactical analysts, says. “If it reaches Olivier Giroud it’s so that he can chest it down and hold it up. If he puts it to Bacary Sagna it’s to make our full-back push up towards him and Sagna will try to head the ball onwards and into the space behind our full-back.”

And on Monday evening they go over and over the way to defend against these Arsenal goal-kicks, with goalkeeper Manuel Neuer in the role of Fabianski. For 20 minutes, Dante and Bastian Schweinsteiger are busy marking Claudio Pizarro, who acts as Giroud, and David Alaba tries to perfect the way to close down Sagna, whose role is taken by Rafinha

Next, Pep explains in detail how Mikel Arteta tries to draw in the opposing pivote in order to create a space in the middle of midfield into which Mesut Özil will try to appear. Pep walks through Arteta’s movements whilst emphasising to his players, who are spread out in front of him: “Özil is the dangerous one – he’s the one we really need to keep the closest eye on. Arteta draws you in, Özil pops up in that zone with Santi] Cazorla and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain around him and that’s the way that they achieve superiority in a key area. We can’t afford that to happen.”

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They test out the way to defend against this Arteta-Özil movement. The idea is that Arjen Robben and Franck Ribéry squeeze infield and that Javi Martínez, in his central-defensive role, pushes into the empty space which Arteta has created. In turn, Rafinha’s task will be to fill the space which the Spaniard has had to leave open in the middle of the back four.

They go through a series of different actions, moving constantly. Pep keeps shouting out the names of Arsenal players – Arteta, Özil, Cazorla, Mertesacker – and these echo round Säbener Strasse whilst the Bayern players push themselves to a degree unheard of for a training session the day before a game. In fairness, they don’t go on for long. Just 20 minutes. It’s the rhythm and speed they’re working at that is so unusual.

Something is changing. The players perform brilliantly and there is a growing sense of pride and total security so that it seems absolutely impossible for them not to win. Everyone is sweating at the end. Pep explains his thinking. “You play at the rhythm you train at. If you train badly, you play badly. If you work like a beast in training, you play the same way. And these guys, they train like beasts.”

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Guardiola chooses control over aggression and picks Schweinsteiger instead of Toni Kroos. By the time the bus is leaving the training ground for the Dolce Hotel, where they will spend the intervening six hours, the coach is feeling positive. “I’ve gone for control. Control and more control.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/arsenal/11162163/Revealed-How-Pep-Guardiola-plotted-Arsenals-Champions-League-downfall.html

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De Futebol

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What in the Sam Hill is going on with reigning World Chumps I mean Champs Germany? Ireland pulled a one all tie outta their hat. Germany looked like they would win. A late goal by John O’Shea in the 90th minute earn the Irish the draw. Ireland is in second place with seven points. Poland is top dog with seven points tambem. The Poles are a plus nine while the Irish are a plus eight. Germany is parked in fourth place four points however Scotland, four points, is ahead of the Germans on goal difference. The Scots are a plus minus of zero. Germany is a minus one.

Go figure.

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The Daily Mail- “John O’Shea now has one hundred caps and three goals for the Republic of Ireland.

As Martin O’Neill and his team edge forwards towards an unlikely shot at qualification for the European Championship finals, that second statistic is currently somewhat more important than the first.

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Only seconds remained in added time in Gelsenkirchen on Tuesday night as Ireland seemed to be heading to a rather expected and routine defeat against a German team unimpressive but still markedly superior.

Toni Kroos had scored his team’s goal with 20 minutes to go and, for Ireland, there seemed to be no coming back.

O’Shea, however, had been a Trojan at centre-half all night and, when it mattered, he appeared just an inch or two ahead of Germany’s Mats Hummels to prod an unlikely equaliser past Manuel Neuer after a deep cross from substitute Wes Hoolahan had been hooked back across goal deep in the 94th minute.

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It really was a most incredible finish. O’Shea’s last goal for his country had come against Kazakhstan. Suffice to say, this one may transpire to be much more important.

Having not lost back-to-back competitive games since the European Championship finals hosted by Holland and Belgium 14 years ago, Germany were clearly intent making amends for their setback across the Polish border at the weekend.

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For much of the first half, their football was purposeful and aggressive. For long periods, though, there was not much to show for it once play reached the environs of the Irish penalty area.

Indeed, Irish goalkeeper Forde was worked only twice in an opening 45 minutes that saw O’Neill’s team hold the Germans at bay with relative comfort.

Certainly Ireland were organised and not lacking in energy themselves. O’Shea and Marc Wilson were particularly impressive immediately in front of Forde even if the Irish largely failed to hold on to the ball whenever they did manage to venture in to the German half.

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A team unrecognisable in part to the one that lifted the World Cup in Rio back in early July, Germany nevertheless bristled with attacking menace at the outset.

Indeed, only five minutes had elapsed when left-back Erik Durm advanced to smack a superb right foot volley in to the top of the crossbar from 25 yards.

For a while this effort seemed to set the tone as the German midfield eased the Irish defence so far towards their own goal that, at times, as many as six green shirts retreated to form some kind of shield in front of Forde.

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There were other early chances, too, as full-back Antonio Rudiger headed a good chance wide after a training ground set piece between Kroos and Thomas Muller provided him with an opportunity.

Then Julian Draxler made an intelligent run inside David Meyler to receive possession and pull the ball back to Kroos. The shot, though, was dragged wide.

Irish forays in to German territory were rare but, as time passed, so were genuine threats on their goal.

Mistakes from Wilson and then Forde gave Germany an apparent route to goal but O’Shea cleared with a huge swing of the right boot that said everything about the urgency of the situation.

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Before the interval there was still time for Ginter to head a corner over while Kroos also whistled another long range effort over the frame of the goal.

Germany, though, reached half-time with much to think about and made a change for the second period as Arsenal’s Lukas Podolski replaced Ginter for the second period.

At the start of the second-half, Ireland briefly threatened as James McClean crossed low to the near post forcing German goalkeeper Neuer to be sure of his handling as Robbie Keane looked to profit from any uncertainty six yards from goal.

Before long, however, Germany were back on top and Forde was at his best to touch over a long-range shot from Kroos before Hummels almost turned in the resulting corner from close range.

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Just before the hour, meanwhile, came a moment of apparent controversy as Podolski appeared to be fouled in the penalty area by Wilson after Muller had superbly cushioned a header in to the substitute’s path.

However, replays showed that the referee was correct to wave away penalty appeals as there had been no contact and Podolski had in fact fallen over rather easily.

By now, with less than half an hour left, Ireland were beginning to look rather ragged. They just couldn’t keep the ball and, as such, were beginning to look increasingly vulnerable. Germany, though, were still looking less than convincing.

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Having had a more realistic penalty appeal rejected when O’Shea seemed to grapple Gotze to the ground, Germany finally broke through in the 70th minute.

Kroos had already had a few sighters when he lined up another from 25 yards and this time his low right foot shot fizzed past Forde and found the corner via the foot of the goalkeeper’s right-hand post.

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Right at the death, Ireland almost scored when McClean crossed low from the left for Hoolahan, only for Durm somehow to throw himself in the way of the ball and block the threat. Then up stepped O’Shea to write his own story.

‘I remember all my international goals because there aren’t many,’ said the former Manchester United player. ‘This one overtakes the other two. I’m not one for hanging shirts up but this one may be heading for the mantelpiece in my mum and dad’s house.’

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The result leaves Ireland with seven points from three games in Group D, with the hardest away trip out of the way for O’Neill and assistant Roy Keane.

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2792978/germany-1-1-republic-ireland-john-o-shea-scores-dramatic-equaliser-stoppage-time.html#ixzz3GEaCT6qo

De Futebol

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Brasil took apart Japan 4-0 in a friendly. Neymar led the way with trifecta. He has now scored 40 goals in 58 matches for Brasileiros national team.

This a good sign for the guys. We are playing a ton better. The attack is good. Yes Martha this is only a friendly and it means bupkis. In the end this will rebuild a system and a team that is broken.

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Dunga has brought in some old and familiar faces Robinho and Kaka. These two cats will bring experience and playmaking ability. This will open up the attack and give Neymar more space to operate. Instead of having fight through three or four guys Neymar can concentrate on scoring instead of dribbling through traffic.

The Guardian- “Dunga, in his second spell in charge after Luiz Felipe Scolari resigned in July following the World Cup, brought on the ageing Robinho and Kaká to get among the scoring fun.

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Kaká almost obliged with his first touch, but his 77th-minute header was pushed on to the bar by Kawashima.

Kaká, back playing for São Paulo before he moves to Orlando City, then turned provider as he swung over a cross from the left that Neymar leapt highest to head home in the 81st minute.”

http://www.theguardian.com/football/2014/oct/14/japan-brazil-international-friendly-match-report

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The results are evident a 4 nil thrashing of Japan and two nil win over Argentina.

UOL- Se existe um adversário que Neymar se dá muito bem é a seleção do Japão. Nesta terça-feira, em Cingapura, o atacante melhorou sua marca diante do time nipônico. Neymar marcou quatro gols e foi o principal nome na goleada do Brasil por 4 a 0 do Brasil no amistoso.

O atacante soma quatro vitórias em quatro jogos contra o Japão. Mais: são oito gols marcados pelo atacante diante da equipe asiática.

O repertório de Neymar nesta terça foi vasto: gol driblando o goleiro, gol em velocidade, com a perna esquerda e de cabeça.

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A seleção fecha turnê asiática com 100% de aproveitamento nos jogos contra Japão e Argentina. O triunfo em Cingapura realça o bom começo de Dunga neste retorno à seleção.

O treinador venceu os quatro jogos no comando do time (Equador, Colômbia, Argentina e Japão), sem nenhum gol sofrido.

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As fases de jogo – A seleção brasileira foi pouco ameaçada no 1º tempo. Ao contrário da Argentina, o Japão apresentou baixo rendimento técnico.

As principais chances de gol surgiram dos pés de Neymar. No primeiro lance de perigo, aos 16min, o atacante finalizou na trave.

Um minuto depois, Neymar colocou o Brasil à frente no placar. Ele recebeu belo passe de Tardelli e ficou na frente do goleiro Kawashima. Neymar superou o goleiro antes de finalizar.

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A jogada do segundo gol do Brasil parecia replay do primeiro feito por Neymar. O camisa 10 surgiu livre, recebendo passe preciso de Coutinho. Desta vez, Neymar preferiu chutar na saída do goleiro.

Ele quase marca o seu terceiro na partida após passe de Everton Ribeiro. O chute, porém, tocou a rede pelo lado de fora.

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Com o jogo nas mãos, Dunga promoveu várias alterações. Kaká entrou e já participou do gol de Neymar, o terceiro do jogo. Minutos depois novamente Kaká acionou Neymar, que de cabeça fez o seu quarto gol na partida.

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O melhor: Neymar– Brilhou em campo com 4 gols. Além disso, deu passes açucarados para Robinho.

O pior: Kawashima. Goleiro do Japão não fez nenhuma defesa boa. Quando o Japão era ameaçado, ou a trave salvou ou o Brasil fez o gol.

A chave do jogo. O Brasil soube explorar o fato de a zaga japonesa marcar em zona, e não individualmente. Com passes em infiltração, os atletas da seleção chegavam sem marcação à área adversária.

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Toque do técnico: Dunga promoveu uma substituição em relação ao time que enfrentou a Argentina: Gil na vaga de David Luiz, vetado pelo departamento médico. O posicionamento foi o mesmo. Neymar e Tardelli se movimentaram em velocidade, confundindo o rival.

http://esporte.uol.com.br/futebol/ultimas-noticias/2014/10/14/neymar-da-show-faz-4-gols-em-fregues-e-brasil-goleia-o-japao.htm#fotoNav=7

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De Futebol

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Wanna talk about upset city special. A funny thing happed on the way to Poland. The Poles defeated World Champs Germany for the first time 2-0. A stunner baby a total stunner.

Poland followed up this puppy with a two all draw against Scotland yesterday.

The Daily Mail Poland stunned World Cup winners Germany 2-0 on Saturday to earn their first ever victory over their neighbours and take control of Euro 2016 qualifying Group D.

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Arkadiusz Milik put them ahead with a well-timed header in the 51st minute and Sebastian Mila added another late in the game to hand the hosts a memorable victory against bitter rivals Germany after 18 previous failed attempts.

Poland, who had scored once in their previous six competitive meetings and had lost 12 of 18 games against either Germany or West Germany, now go top of Group D on six points, as many as Ireland. Germany are third on three after two games.

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Wearing the black and red striped tops they had last worn during their 7-1 demolition of Brazil in the World Cup semi-final in July, Germany had none of their usual sharpness.

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The Germans, playing in the stadium where they lost 2-1 to Italy in the Euro 2012 semi-final, were made to work hard against a solid Polish backline in front of a fiery 57,000 crowd.

Towering central defenders Kamil Glik and Lukasz Szukala also made sure to eliminate any aerial threat from Mats Hummels, playing his first game for Germany since the World Cup final.

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The visitors, missing half a dozen starters including Bastian Schweinsteiger and Marco Reus, had their best chance in the 38th minute when Mario Goetze floated a cross to the far post but winger Karim Bellarabi, on his debut, fired wired.

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With Poland tiring towards halftime, the Germans carved out several more good chances but neither Thomas Mueller twice nor Bellarabi could find the back of the net.

But the hosts stunned Germany five minutes after the restart with Milik heading in a pinpoint Lukasz Piszczek cross.

As expected it turned out to be a one-sided second half with Germany attacking and the Poles waiting to hit back on the break.

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Germany substitute Lukas Podolski shook the crossbar with his first touch of the ball before Mila sealed Poland’s win when he tapped in from a Robert Lewandowski assist in the 88th minute.

The result leaves the world champions fourth in their group behind Poland and the Republic of Ireland – and level on points with Scotland.

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2789474/poland-2-0-germany-arkadiusz-milik-sebastian-mila-make-history-victory-arch-enemy-world-cup-winners-humbled.html#ixzz3FsczZDRp

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De Futebol

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Flamengo picked up a huge win 3-0 over Cruzeiro. The win keeps Mengao safe for now tenth place 37 points. Only eight points separate voce vai bound 17th place 29 points Botafogo. This win was huge for Boo Mengao defeated top dogs Raposa.

With only ten matches left wins are of utmost importance from this day forward. An own goal triggered off the onslaught by Cruzeiros Dede in the 15th minute. Hector Canteros 57th minute made two nil Rubro-negro. Gabriel tickled the twines in the 62nd minute for the final score of 3-0.

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O Dia- Jogando em casa, o Flamengo fez valer o fator casa e também aproveitou as falhas da zaga do Cruzeiro para vencer com tranquilidade o líder do Brasileirão por 3 a 0, no Maracanã. Com gols Dedé (contra), Canteros e Gabriel, o time Rubro-Negro se afasta da zona de rebaixamento e encaixa a segunda vitória seguida na competição.

Com o resultado posivito, o Flamengo agora tem 37 pontos e é o 10º colocado na tabela. No próxima domingo, o Fla visita o Atlético-PR, às 16h, na Arena da Baixada. Já o líder Cruzeiro perdeu a segunda seguida, vê os seus rivais na briga pelo título enconstarem, mas continua no topo com 56 pontos. Também no domingo, a Raposa visita o Vitória, no Barradão, às 18h30.

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Aproveitando o Maracanã lotado e o fator casa, o Flamengo começou o jogo se lançando ao ataque pressionando o Cruzeiro. Sempre apostando na velocidade de Everton, as melhores chegadas ao ataque eram do Fla e aos 10 veio a primeira chance. Após boa jogada, o camisa 22 passou para Alecsandro que serviu Canteros mas o argentino finalizou mal por cima do gol. Mas o gol do Rubro-Negro não tardou a sair.

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Aos 13, Márcio Araújo desarmou Nilton na saída de bola e serviu Alecsandro na direita. O atacante do Fla cruzou para área e o zagueiro Dedé foi tentar afastar e colocou contra a própria meta. 1 a 0 Flamengo e festa no Maracanã. Atrás no placar, o Cruzeiro começou a sair para o jogo e aos 18 teve ótima chance para empatar. Marquinhos cobrou falta na área e Nilton desviou a bola que passou tirando tinta da trave. Após o lance, o líder do brasileiro começou a pressionar o Fla.

Em duas oportunidades seguidas, Marcelo Moreno teve boa chance de empatar o jogo mas parou em Paulo Victor. Aos 28, o estreante do dia, o lateral esquerdo Anderson Pico, chutou com perigo apóes cobrança de falta ensaiada ao lado do gol defendido por Fábio. Aos 30, Egidío desviou de cabeça para o meio da área para Marcelo Moreno mas o atacante cruzeirense perdeu a chance de empatar sozinho e colocou para fora.

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Aos 34, o clima esquentou em campo. Marquinhos discutiu asperamente com Anderson Pico e depois com Cáceres que se envolveu na confusão e acabou levando a pior e foi punido com o cartão amarelo. No lance seguinte, Nilton se estranhou com a zaga rubro-negra e também foi advertido com o cartão.O Fla continuava explorando a velocidade de Everton pelo lado esquerdo e a última jogada de perigo foi justamento com o camisa 22. Ele arrancou pela lateral, cruzou rasteiro para o meio da área e o zagueiro Dedé afastou.

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No segundo tempo, o Cruzeiro continou tentando pressionar o Flamengo e logo no primeiro minuto, Dedé cabeceou com perigo por cima do gol do Fla. Apesar da posse de bola, o time mineiro não conseguia finalizar e transformar o domínio em gol. Já o Rubro-Negro que apostava nos contra-ataque continuou contando com a ajuda da zaga azul. Em nova falha da defesa, desta vez de Manoel e Fábio, Canteros se antecipou aos dois, roubou a bola e apenas empurrou para o gol vazio: 2 a 0.

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O Cruzeiro acusou o golpe e se atordou em campo. Aos 17, mais um erro do setor defensivo do líder. Após chutão de Paulo Victor, Manoel se atrapalhou e deixou Alecsandro entrar livre pela direita. O atacante cruzou com precisão para Gabriel que tirou com categoria de Fábio e ampliou para o Fla: 3 a 0. O terceiro gol foi a senha pro Fla se fechar de vez na defesa e segurar o placar. Perdido em campo, o Cruzeiro tinha a posse de bola, avançou no campo mas não conseguia criar chances para diminuir. Já o Rubro-Negro apostava nos contra-ataques e nos espaços deixados pelos mineiros.

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Sem conseguir criar grandes chances de gol, o Cruzeiro continuou pressionando mas sem perigo enquanto Flamengo apenas administrava a vitória e esperava pelo apito final do juíz que sacramentou mais uma vitória do Rubro-Negro no Campeonato Brasileiro.

http://odia.ig.com.br/esporte/flamengo/2014-10-12/com-ajuda-da-zaga-adversaria-fla-vence-o-lider-cruzeiro-no-maracana.html

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De Futebol

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Brasil got the better of Argentina on this day in China a 2-0 win. This win means nothing. The battle between the two super stars Lionel Messi and Neymar was pretty much even Steven. Brasileiros won but the key to the match was the missed PK by Messi that could have changed the complexion of the match.

The Daily Mail- “More than any other teams in world football, Brazil and Argentina have come to be defined, in recent years, by their No 10s.

In Barcelona duo Lionel Messi and Neymar, the South American giants have arguably the best two players in the world in that position, and both teams are built around their respective superstars.

But how did the pair compare when they met in Beijing on Saturday?

INFLUENCE

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It might not be right to describe Brazil vs Argentina as simply Neymar vs Messi – but both teams rely so heavily on their star man that if either goes missing, the whole side can lose their way.

Brazil, as the World Cup showed, are only as good as their No 10, while Messi, on his day, can carry Argentina almost single-handedly.

It’s not enough to be good, these two have to dominate the whole game to earn praise.

In the first half hour, there is no doubt who was winning this battle. Messi was involved in everything good that Argentina did, getting on the ball in deep areas, committing defenders and feeding his team-mates.

Not only did he beat defenders himself, but his very presence drew men away from his fellow forwards. Angel di Maria and Sergio Aguero had more space than they would normally be afforded by virtue of playing alongside Messi.

Neymar, meanwhile, was left isolated for much of the first half, lurking on the lonely left wing while Brazil struggled to get a foothold.

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It was clear, whenever Dunga’s side won the ball, that they were looking to their talisman for a lift, but possession was so rare (less than 35 per cent in the first half) that he was a peripheral figure.

In fact, Brazil’s No 10 made just 10 passes in the entire first 45 minutes, less than a third of Messi’s tally – and three of those 10 failed to find a team-mate.

But, after Diego Tardelli’s opener, the 22-year-old came to life. Dazzling dribbles, incisive passes, and very nearly a superb solo goal.

Suddenly Neymar, without having too much of the ball, was the most exciting player on the pitch. Every time he got the ball he looked to have the beating of a desperately slow Argentina defence.

His pace and threat brought fouls and cards, and by the end of the game there was little doubt who the most threatening player on the pitch was.

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CREATIVITY

Both players are absolutely vital to their side’s chance creation. Despite Chelsea duo Oscar and Willian alongside him, Neymar is the only genuine creative focal point in the Brazil side.

Argentina have a few more options, with Angel di Maria in particular diverting some of the pressure off Messi’s shoulders, but the diminutive genuis is still the key man.

Neither of the two were particularly wonderful in a first half which lacked many clear-cut chances, but Messi offered slightly more, creating two chances for Sergio Aguero.

First he slid Pablo Zabaleta in behind before the full back’s cross was mishit by Aguero, then he put the Manchester City striker in down the right hand channel, only for the forward to blaze over the bar.

Neymar, on the other hand, created only for himself in the opening 45, although this was enough to strike fear into the Argentinian defence.

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He rectified that soon after half time, a perfectly weighted pass playing in Felipe Luis, who should really have made it 2-0, and then releasing Willian inside the box, who again was wasteful.

INDIVIDUAL BRILLIANCE

While Brazil’s new counter-attacking system relies on Neymar to do it all himself, Argentina’s tactical set-up lets Messi drift in and out, before attacking from deeper areas.

Both systems are designed to get the best out of their major star, and both seemed to work fairly well in that respect.

Messi repeatedly picked up the ball from the right hand side and drove at the Brazilian defence, who usually responded by fouling him.

Mostly the Argentine beat at least one man, before spreading the play wide or winning a free kick in a dangerous area. The levels of excitement were certainly raised around the stadium when he got on the ball, but there were hints, rather than devastating examples, of what he can do on the ball.

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As the need to take the game by the scruff of the neck increased with Brazil’s two goals, Messi came further inside and began to run with the ball more.

Two shots soon after the hour mark tested Jefferson, though neither really threatened to find the back of the net.

Neymar, on the other hand, clearly had the upper hand in this particular duel. Out of the game for such long periods, the Brazil captain showed several times what he could do when given time and space.

Soon after the half hour Neymar went on three devastating dribbles in five short minutes, slicing through the Argentina defence with ease and very nearly taking the game away from his opponents single-handedly.

END PRODUCT

For all their tricks and flicks, runs and rabonas, the pair will always be judged on their final touch.

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In the first half, both were found seriously wanting. Messi, usually so deadly, fired two free kicks against the wall and failed to manufacture any shooting opportunities from open play.

Even when presented with the perfect opportunity from 12 yards the former World Player of the Year could only fire his spot-kick tamely at Jefferson.

The second half saw three decent efforts from the edge of the box, all of which brought saves from Jefferson, but only an 80th minute free-kick looked close to beating the Brazil keeper.

Neymar was little better. His best run, during which he ran from half-way, beating two men before drawing the keeper, ended with something of a whimper, a scuffed shot that trickled wide.

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Then, early in the second half, the pacey Brazilian eased past the defence only to cut the ball back to no-one.

Even when put through one-on-one by Luis Gustavo against a goalkeeper stuck in no-mans-land, the young forward could only chip over the bar.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2789203/neymar-rules-battle-barcelona-no10s-inspire-win-lionel-messi-s-argentina.html#ixzz3FsWpwYuR

De Futebol

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Brasil and Argentina were supposed to meet in the World Cup finals. This what was supposed to happen. The fix was in but Germany didn’t copulate and thus these two mighty futebol powers had to wait to play in a friendly in China.

Brasil took care of business defeating Argentina 2-0. The daily double by Diego Tardelli 27thand 64th minutes led Brasileiros to the win over hated rival Argentina.

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O Dia No centésimo clássico da história, os brasileiros defendiam sua superioridade no gramado do Ninho do Pássaro, na China. Em 39 oportunidades, o time verde e amarelo levou a melhor, contra 36 dos rivais argentinos. Diego Tardelli colocou mais uma vitória na conta da Seleção. O atacante do Atlético-MG mostrou faro de gol e marcou dois, no jogo deste sábado, contra os vice-campeões mundiais. Outro que brilhou na partida, foi o goleiro Jefferson. O camisa 1 defendeu uma cobrança de pênalti, batida por Lionel Messi, ainda no primeiro tempo.

Com Kaká começando no banco, o técnico Dunga optou por um quarteto ofensivo com Oscar, Willian, Neymar e Diego Tardelli. Nesse esquema, o time brasileiro entrou mais rápido para explorar o contra-ataque.

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A Argentina dominou o começo do primeiro tempo e o Brasil teve trabalho para conter os ataques dos Hermanos. O gol de Diego Tardelli, aos 27 minutos, deu mais confiança ao time do técnico Dunga que, no fim da primeira etapa, viu o goleiro Jefferson defender uma cobrança de pênalti cobrada por Lionel Messi.

No segundo tempo, o Brasil voltou mais atento e equilibrou o domínio da posse de bola. Sendo caçado em campo, Neymar era parado com falta constantemente pela defesa argentina. Diego Tardelli, na condição de homem-gol, mostrou oportunismo mais uma vez e marcou o segundo dele no jogo.

O próximo compromisso da seleção brasileira é na terça-feira, contra o Japão, às 7h45 (Horário de Brasília), em Singapura.

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O torcedor brasileiro levou um susto logo no início da partida. Aos 17 segundos do primeiro tempo, Agüero recebeu um longo lançamento e ficou de frente para o goleiro Jefferson. David Luiz chegou na marcação e o atacante acabou batendo para fora.

Com o domínio da posse de bola, a Argentina chegou mais uma vez com perigo com Di María. O atacante do Manchester United arriscou de fora da área, assustando o goleiro Jefferson.

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O Brasil tentava encaixar um contra-ataque e levava perigo nas bolas altas. Em uma delas, Oscar levantou na área e a zaga argentina afastou mal de cabeça e Diego Tardelli pegou o rebote no bico da pequena área e concluiu de primeira, sem deixar a bola cair, para abrir o placar, aos 27 minutos, no Ninho do Pássaro.

Cinco minutos depois o Brasil poderia ter ampliado. Neymar começou a crescer na partida. O atacante fez jogada individual, driblou dois, e ficou cara a cara com Romero. Na finalização, o brasileiro tentou tirar do goleiro, mas bateu fraco e sem direção.

O árbitro Fan Qi fazia uma atuação contestável. O Juiz deixou de marcar um pênalti para a Argentina no início da partida, mas na segunda oportunidade polêmica ele marcou.

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Aos 39 minutos, Danilo chegou junto de Di María e de carrinho fez o corte derrubando o jogador argentino em seguida. O árbitro marcou o pênalti. Na cobrança, Messi cobrou no canto direito do goleiro Jefferson que voou para evitar o gol dos Hermanos.

Na volta do segundo tempo, o Brasil foi quem chegou assustando. Neymar dominou na entrada da área e tocou bem para Filipe Luís. O lateral apareceu como elemento surpresa e bateu por cima do travessão.

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No vacilo de Miranda a Argentina quase empata. O zagueiro recebeu bola recuada de David Luiz e na hora de mandar a bola para o ataque, o defensor carimbou Di María que ficou com a sobra. O atacante disparou, mas antes de finalizar Miranda já havia se recuperado no lance e atrapalhado o chute.

Com boas oportunidades para os dois lados, coube ao atacante do Atlético-MG o dever de balançar as redes mais uma vez. Depois de cobrança de escanteio de Oscar, David Luiz raspou a cabeça na bola e o desvio deixou Diego Tardelli na boa para marcar o segundo dele no jogo. Depois da cabeçada, o goleiro Romero ainda tocou na bola, mas não conseguiu evitar o gol.

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A Argentina tentou sustentar uma pressão dos 22 aos 30 minutos, mas as tentativas de ataque eram paradas pela defesa brasileira e pelo goleiro Jefferson. Quando não dava, os zagueiros paravam Messi e cia, na falta. Em uma delas, o camisa 10 hermano obrigou o goleiro do Botafogo a se esticar e evitar o gol no canto esquerdo.

A resposta brasileira veio com Neymar. O volante Luiz Gustavo toca em profundidade para o atacante que parte em velocidade, deixando a defesa adversária para trás. O atacante do Barcelona tentou encobrir o goleiro Romero, mas a bola subiu e saiu por cima do gol.

Dez minutos para o fim, o jogo caiu um pouco de ritmo. Kaká entrou no jogo e foi ovacionado pela torcida chinesa. Já sentindo o sabor da derrota, o time argentino pouco assustou o goleiro Jefferson. Nos acréscimos, Robinho também teve sua chance de entrar em campo, na vaga de Neymar, exausto.

http://odia.ig.com.br/esporte/2014-10-11/diego-tardelli-marca-dois-jefferson-pega-penalti-e-brasil-vence-a-argentina.html

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De Futebol

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England was in a damned if you and damned if you don’t situation against an under mined San Marino side. San Marino has only one professional futeboler on their squad. Three Lions won in a whitewash 5-0. The Rooney man led the charge with a PK goal in the 43rd minute to make it two nil. Phil Jagielka 24th minute, Danny Welbeck 49th minute, an own goal by Alessandro Della Valle 77th minute and Andros Townsend 72nd minute ended the hopes and dreams of the clothes salesman, the factory worker and the bar owner from San Marino.

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However the big surprise of the day was Spain lost to Slovakia. As Gomer Pyle would say” Surprise, surprise, surprise, it’s me Sergeant Carter.”

You can’t take a thing from this win. Sure England beat Switzerland in match one 1-0 in Group E. The tests are down the road.

This goal gave Wayne Rooney 42 international goals. He is seven short of the all-time record held by Sir Bobby Charlton.

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Henry Winter The Telegraph- “There are no easy games in international except home, and away, games against San Marino, who make minnows look like Jaws.

San Marino were so poor, so unadventurous that England fans decided to mock the occasion and voted for Joe Hart, who touched the ball four or five times, as the official sponsors’ man of the match with 53 per cent of the vote. The FA was so embarrassed that it announced Jack Wilshere had won it.

What was beyond dispute was that a remarkable number of fans turned up, almost 56,000, and that England won comfortably, looking better in the second half with more width.

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The removal of two Liverpool players, Raheem Sterling and Jordan Henderson, at the break seemed a respectful nod from Hodgson towards Brendan Rodgers after the controversy over how Daniel Sturridge fell lame at England training. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Adam Lallana came on, followed by Andros Townsend (for Danny Welbeck), and there was more width, more movement, although the situation was eased further by San Marino tiring.

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Wilshere played well, dropping back in the second half. Rooney was good, although failed to take a hatfull of chances after the break. Townsend looked lively after a difficult spell in his career. Hart could easily have brought a book with so much of the action down the other end.”

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http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/euro-2016/11152861/England-5-San-Marino-0-Wayne-Rooney-edges-closer-to-Bobby-Charltons-goalscoring-record-in-routine-win.html

Dominic Fifield The Guardian- “Roy Hodgson looked satisfied enough at the final whistle, offering commiserations and a handshake to his opposite number, Piermangelo Manzaroli, but there were times when even inflicting a thrashing had felt humdrum. The latest advertisement for smaller nations to pre-qualify for qualification campaigns had followed a predictable course. San Marino had been stubborn for a while, outclassed throughout and overwhelmed long before the end.

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This was almost the most uncompetitive of competitive fixtures conceivable and, consequently, hardly a source of much satisfaction. England did what they needed to do professionally enough, moving the ball more smoothly after the interval and making in-roads as a result, but they will have treated this as a warm-up for a slightly more awkward occasion against Estonia on Sunday. Or, if that contest follows similar lines, even Slovenia next month.

Those on the home bench had stopped celebrating the goals before the end and there had been ironic cheers whenever the lonely Joe Hart swept up a Sammarinese punt forward or, shock horror, was even charged with mustering a clearance. He could afford to doze off. The last time San Marino scored away from home in a competitive game was back in 2001. They never threatened to break that duck here.

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This had the feeling of a training drill from the outset, both teams crammed into the Sammarinese half for the majority of a mismatch and largely played out to a polite, murmuring hubbub in the stands more normally associated with Lord’s further down the Jubilee Line. “

http://www.theguardian.com/football/2014/oct/09/england-san-marino-euro-2016-qualifier-match-report

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De Futebol

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Flamengo took a one nil lead only to have Figueirense tie it up. It sure looked like Mengao would wind up tied. Low and behold a goal by Rubro Negro’s Nixon in the 90th minute plus two to save our silly butts. Flamengo wins 2-1.

The wins keeps Mengao ahead of Figueira. Mengao is in eleventh place 34 points. Figueirense dropped to 12th place 32 points. Only six points separate tenth place Goias 34 points and 17th place Chapecoense 28 points.

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O Dia- O Flamengo soube sofrer para chegar à vitória, algo recorrente no discurso de Luxemburgo. Um triunfo importante para se distanciar da confusão, outro termo utilizado pelo técnico. Nesta quarta-feira, o Rubro-Negro bateu o Figueirense por 2 a 1, no Orlando Scarpelli. Nixon saiu do banco para ser o herói. Ele marcou aos 47 minutos do segundo tempo.

Até então, Eduardo da Silva era protagonista, no desempenho de herói e com traços de vilão. Ele fez o primeiro gol do Flamengo, teve a chance de fazer o segundo, errou e viu na sequência o Figueirense empatar. Porém, na raça, o Rubro-Negro foi buscar o triunfo.

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O Flamengo quebra uma série de cinco jogos sem vencer no Brasileiro. E ganha fôlego na briga contra a confusão. Agora, com 34 pontos, na 11ª colocação, o Fla abre seis pontos para a zona do rebaixamento. Na próxima rodada, o Rubro-Negro recebe o líder Cruzeiro, domingo, às 16h, no Maracanã. O Figueirense, com 32 pontos, volta a campo também no domingo, às 18h30, para enfrentar o Atlético-PR na Arena da Baixada.

O duelo começou a todo vapor e logo com polêmica. Léo Moura desceu pela direita e cruzou. A bola bateu no braço de França. A arbitragem ignorou pênalti. O Flamengo não diminuiu o ritmo e abriu o placar. João Paulo avançou pela esquerda e cruzou para Eduardo da Silva cabecear para o fundo da rede: 1 a 0. Uma cena repetida para o Rubro-Negro.

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O Flamengo era superior e buscava as jogadas aéreas. Alecsandro levou vantagem pelo alto e assustou Volpi. Depois, o goleiro salvou em falta cobrada por Canteros. No rebote, Luiz Antonio chutou para fora. O Figueirense finalmente respondeu. O arremate de Marco Antônio foi para fora. Em seguida, o cruzamento de Marco Antônio levou perigo.

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O clube carioca sofria na bola área. Marcão ganhou pelo alto, mas desviou para fora. O centroavante, depois, teve mais uma oportunidade. Mais novamente não acertou o alvo. O Figueirense fez a primeira alteração ainda na primeira etapa. Argel colocou Mazola no lugar de França, que já tinha cartão amarelo.

O Flamengo teve a chance de ampliar no começo da etapa final. Marcelo surgiu na frente e ficou cara a cara com Volpi, mas chutou em cima do goleiro. O Figueirense voltou a ameaçar no jogo áereo, desta vez com Thiago Heleno. A resposta do Fla foi com Eduardo da Silva. O atacante foi lançado e ficou livre. Ele dominou e tentou fazer um gol de calcanhar, talvez por achar que estava impedido. Porém, a posição era legal. O castigo não demorou. No ataque seguinte do Figueira, Marcão tocou para Mazola chutar com categoria e fazer 1 a 1 no Orlando Scarpelli.

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A virada quase aconteceu com Marcão. Lançado, ele ficou cara a cara com Paulo Victor e tentou encobrir o goleiro. Com um toque, Paulo Victor impediu a virada. Com o Flamengo mal em campo, Luxemburgo fez duas mudanças. Muralha e Gabriel entraram. Luiz Antonio e Alecsandro saíram. O clube carioca equilibrou o jogo e teve outra chance de marcar. Canteros surgiu na frente, mas o chute foi desviado por Thiago Heleno. Luxa colocou Nixon na vaga de Eduardo da Silva.

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O Flamengo ensaiou uma pressão. Everton chutou cruzado e obrigou Volpi a espalmar. Na sequência, Canteros ficou com a bola após cruzamento e carimbou a trave. No abafa, o clube carioca chegou ao gol da vitória. Após cobrança de escanteio, Chicão parou em Volpi, mas ficou com rebote e achou Nixon. A cabeçada do atacante morreu no fundo da rede: 2 a 1 e vitória rubro-negra.

http://odia.ig.com.br/esporte/flamengo/2014-10-09/flamengo-faz-gol-no-ultimo-minuto-bate-o-figueirense-e-se-afasta-da-confusao.html

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De Futebol

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Former Southampton coach Mauricio Pochettino guided his new club Tottenham to a hard fought 1-0 win at Spurs house White Hart Lane. Christian Eriksen nailed the match winner in the 40th minute to seal the deal for Spurs.

The win puts Tottenham in sixth place with eleven points.

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David Hytner The Guardian wrote- “When Christian Eriksen’s beautifully threaded low shot hit the back of the Southampton net, Mauricio Pochettino turned on his heels and walked purposefully back towards his seat on the bench. Hands plunged deep into his pockets, the Tottenham Hotspur manager did not betray a flicker of emotion.

Pochettino had said that he would not celebrate against his old club, the one he had left at the end of last season for the new challenge at White Hart Lane, because he had too much respect for the people there. It was evident at full-time, as he hugged many of his former players and members of the back-room staff. The warmth was clear.

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But the passions swirled inside him. Pochettino needed this. Tottenham needed this. After four Premier League matches without a win, the grumbling had started. This was better, particularly the first-half performance, and if Tottenham rode their luck towards the end, when Southampton’s pacey forward, Sadio Mané, missed a glorious chance with the goal at his mercy, the home team were just about value for the victory.

The travelling fans, the hordes in red and white who once adored Pochettino, made it clear that he was now a fallen idol. They asked him where his translator had gone, along with other, more choice chants and they were rebuked by Ronald Koeman, who has made such an impressive fist of succeeding Pochettino at St Mary’s.

“I don’t agree [with the fans],” Koeman said. “Everybody deserves respect. I respect Mauricio very much and he did a great job at Southampton.”

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Pochettino could rise above it all, and praise his players for their “big show”. His affection for Southampton will endure. “It was an emotional game for me,” he added. “It was a tough decision to leave but I still love Southampton. I can understand [the chants]. This is football. It doesn’t change my feelings.”

Pochettino said he had “no regrets” about the decision to, although a defeat here would have made for an uncomfortable situation. Southampton had arrived in north London five points better off in the table than Pochettino’s new team.

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But Tottenham pressed hard in the first half, they went close on a clutch of occasions and they fashioned the vital moment when Emmanuel Adebayor, who drifted wide a little too much for the home crowd’s liking, played the ball inside from the left for Eriksen. The midfielder’s precision swat from 20 yards fizzed into the bottom corner.

Jan Vertonghen had seen an early looping header cleared off the line by Ryan Bertrand and both Erik Lamela and Eriksen had worked Fraser Forster while, in the 43rd minute, Nacer Chadli surged clean through only to rattle the far post.

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Southampton had arrived on the back of six straight wins (four of them in the league) and there were flashes from them, including a first-half purple patch in which Mané was prominent. He saw one shot blocked by Kyle Naughton and a dangerous cross from the right similarly repelled by the Tottenham full-back.

Later Mané’s centre from the left almost allowed Morgan Schneiderlin to bundle home. Having tried and failed to force a summer transfer to White Hart Lane, that would have been quite the moment for Schneiderlin.

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There was controversy when Bertrand clattered into Naughton and the Tottenham player was forced off; he left the stadium on crutches and with his right ankle in a protective boot. It was unfortunate as he has been playing, arguably, his best football for the club.

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Then came the flashpoint early in the second half when Mané sprinted towards the Tottenham goal and was met, shoulder-to-shoulder, by Younès Kaboul, who was the last defender.

Mané went down and when the referee, Mike Jones, blew for the foul, it looked as though he would have to dismiss the Tottenham captain. He opted for yellow, which was a relief to the home team. “If you make a whistle as the referee, you have to think but I think a yellow card was OK,” Koeman said.

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Southampton stuck to their principles in the second half and were agonisingly close to an equaliser. After Kaboul’s miscued clearance, Victor Wanyama looked likely to score from just inside the area only for Hugo Lloris to save while, in the 84th minute, Bertrand’s devilish cross from the left was made to measure for Mané. From six yards out, he failed to apply the decisive touch.

http://www.theguardian.com/football/2014/oct/05/tottenham-hotspur-southampton-premier-league-match-report

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De Futebol

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Leeds United’s Darko Milanic is still looking for his first win as the headman. Giuseppe Bellusci scored in the 79th minute to get a one all tie against Sheffield Wednesday. The Whites are hanging in there in the English Championship 14th place 15 points.

Liz Byrnes The Guardian wrote “Darko Milanic is still searching for his first win as Leeds head coach after his side drew 1-1 with Sheffield Wednesday in a tetchy Yorkshire derby at Elland Road.

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The Slovenian has now seen his west Yorkshire team draw two and lose one since taking over. It could have been worse, though, Leeds having to come from a goal down to equalise through Giuseppe Bellusci 11 minutes from time after Chris Maguire had given the Owls the lead in the 52nd minute.

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Leeds would have been kicking themselves if they had not got anything out of the game given the number of goalscoring opportunities they created with Kieren Westwood kept busy in the Owls goal.

Mirco Antenucci was prominent while the muscular Souleymane Doukara was at times an immovable object, the pair linking up well as the Owls struggled with the speed of Leeds’ breaks.

Leeds had a great chance to go ahead in the 13th minute when Tomasso Bianchi’s pass found Alex Mowatt unmarked on the left of the area but Westwood raced off his line to block the shot.

Doukara fired across goal before Rodolph Austin came within inches of putting Leeds ahead, a fierce shot from distance forcing Westwood to tip over.

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The Owls had a great chance when Maguire’s cross found Stevie May in the six-yard box but his low header drifted agonisingly wide.

Leeds started the second half where they had left off. Antenucci ran on to a Doukara through ball but his low shot was diverted by Westwood’s left leg.

After all Leeds’ attacking play, it was the Owls who went ahead seven minutes after the break, Maguire firing home a low shot from the right of the area across the keeper and into the bottom corner.

There was almost an instant response from Leeds but again Westwood stood firm, tipping Antenucci’s curling shot over.

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May was inches wide after making space for himself in the Leeds area but the game had become feisty, intensity and tempers rising on and off the pitch.

There was little fluency but Leeds were rewarded for their attacking play when they levelled in the 79th minute, Bellusci slotting home Mowatt’s free-kick from the right.

http://www.theguardian.com/football/2014/oct/04/leeds-united-sheffield-wednesday-championship-match-report

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De Futebol

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Flamengo has now dropped two straight. Boo Mengao lost to Santos 1-0 at our house Maracanã. Rubro-negro is in danger of getting the heave-hoe. We are parked in 13th place 31 points. Only four separate Mengao from 17th place Vitoria with 27 points.

Flamengo has not won since September 14th a 1-0 win over Corinthians.

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O Dia wrote A festa no Maracanã se transfomou em decepção. Robinho foi o estraga-prazer no dia em que Léo Moura completou 500 jogos pelo Flamengo. O lateral-direito recebeu homenagens, mas não teve o que comemorar. O Peixe venceu por 1 a 0, neste sábado, frustrou 43 mil pessoas no estádio e deixou o clube carioca perto da confusão. O Flamengo não vence há cinco jogos (três empates e duas derrotas) e vê a zona de rebaixamento se aproximar

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O Flamengo abusou dos erros nos cruzamentos e irritou a torcida. A falta de criatividade é evidente no time de Luxemburgo. O time ainda vacilou na defesa (a torcida não perdoou o erro de João Paulo) e não se livra da confusão.

Agora, o Flamengo, com 31 pontos, tem quatro de vantagem sobre o Vitória, primeiro clube na zona do rebaixamento. O Rubro-Negro está na 12ª colocação. O Santos pulou para 39 pontos. Na oitava colocação, o Peixe mantém vivo o sonho de alcançar o G-4.

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Na próxima rodada, nesta quarta-feira, às 22h, o Flamengo encara o Figueirense no Orlando Scarpelli. O Santos volta a campo na quinta-feira e recebe o Bahia, às 19h30, na Vila Belmiro.

Antes de a bola rolar, Léo Moura recebeu homenagens pelos 500 jogos com a camisa do Flamengo. O lateral-direito recebeu uma placa comemorativa de Leandro, um dos maiores jogadores do clube na posição, e uma camisa das mãos do presidente Eduardo Bandeira de Mello.

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Com mais posse de bola, o Flamengo dominou o início do duelo e buscava as jogadas pelas laterais. Faltava, porém, acertar o cruzamento. O clube carioca conseguia envolver o Santos, mas não acertava o último passe. O Peixe conseguiu se segurar e respondeu na mesma moeda: pelo flanco. Geuvânio passou com facilidade por João Paulo e serviu Robinho. O atacante chutou de primeira e abriu o placar. A torcida rubro-negra não perdoou a falha de João Paulo e passou a vaiar o lateral-esquerdo

O Flamengo sentiu o gol e se desarticulou. O Santos ameaçou em duas oportunidades. O Rubro-Negro foi para o vestiário em desvantagem. O Fla voltou para o segundo sem mudanças. A única alteração do Peixe foi no uniforme. O clube paulista voltou de branco.

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Assim como na primeira etapa, o Flamengo buscava as laterais. Léo Moura achou Gabriel, mas o meia-atacante cabeceou para fora. Luxa precisou fazer a primeira alteração. Cáceres sentiu um problema muscular e deu lugar a Luiz Antonio. Depois, Eduardo da Silva entrou na vaga de Gabriel. O Fla ensaiou uma pressão. Em cobrança de falta, Chicão obrigou Vladimir a espalmar. Após o escanteio, João Paulo ficou com rebote e emendou. A bola tocou no travessão e foi para fora.

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Luxa foi para o tudo ou nada e colocou o atacante Elton na vaga de Canteros. De nada adiantou. O Flamengo insistiu nos cruzamentos. E mostrou toda a sua fragilidade ofensiva. A derrota deixa o Rubro-Negro mais perto da confusão.

http://odia.ig.com.br/esporte/flamengo/2014-10-04/santos-estraga-a-festa-de-leo-moura-vence-e-deixa-o-fla-perto-da-confusao.html

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De Futebol

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How many Gunners does it take to show up at blow out? The entire team. Chelsea took apart my guys 2-0. The win keeps the Blues atop the leader board with 19 big ones. Man Shitty is in second place with 14 points. The Saints lost to Tottenham 1-0 so Southampton stays in third with 13 points.

My Gunners are stuck in reverse eighth place ten points. Liverpool is ninth ten points tambem. My Gunners are a plus two compared with the Reds a plus minus of zero.

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The only intensity we shown all match was the exchange of pleasantries between hated foes Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho. No wonder we lost. The fire to fight is extinguished.

Chelsea’s Eden Hazard led it off with a goal in the 27th minute for one nil lead. Diego Costa put this puppy to bed in the 78th for the final score of two one.

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The difference Chelsea was too fast, too strong, and too good. Henry Winter The Telegraph “Their defence was mobile and robust, far too strong for Danny Welbeck while Mesut Ozil was subdued. Wenger suggested that Arsenal had not been interested in bringing Fabregas back to Arsenal because they had bought Ozil; Fabregas looked better business on this evidence.”

Winter summarized the match this way-“The only time Arsenal really got to grips with Chelsea, their serial nemesis, was when Arsène Wenger lost his temper and pushed Jose Mourinho midway through the first half. Apart from the ding-dong in the dug-out, Chelsea were again heavyweights against middleweights, again totally in control, again triumphant.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/competitions/premier-league/11141948/Chelsea-2-Arsenal-0-match-report.html

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Tim Jenkins the Guardian was even more cynical- “There was a point of this match when Arsène Wenger seemed to have gone into Begbie-from-Trainspotting mode and was squaring up to José Mourinho by the side of the pitch, as if someone had spilled his pint one time too many. Wenger had already shoved his bete noire in the chest and when he went back to prolong the argument the Arsenal manager briefly pushed his face towards his old adversary so they were almost nose to nose. Those were the lingering images of a sometimes wild game when, once again, Mourinho came out on top and everyone could see exactly how far he has got under Wenger’s skin.

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Mourinho’s superiority over Wenger has stretched now to 12 games unbeaten and the man he branded a “specialist in failure” will be fortunate to escape further action from the Football Association. Chelsea have won seven matches during that sequence and once we had waded through all the varying subplots and controversies the bottom line is the Premier League leaders have re-established a five-point advantage ahead of Manchester City – and gone nine clear of Arsenal – courtesy of Eden Hazard’s expertly taken penalty and the latest demonstration of Diego Costa’s penalty-box prowess.

That list of side-issues is fairly considerable, though, even ignoring for one moment the first-half spat between Wenger and Mourinho, with the older man very much the aggressor, that brought no apology from the Arsenal manager, but a wry offer to the journalists in his presence that it was only a “little shove” and he could show us a real one if requested.”

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http://www.theguardian.com/football/2014/oct/05/chelsea-arsenal-premier-league-match-report

The Daily Mail- “A one-man team? Chelsea are so much more than that this season. Those who believe the title race rests on the hamstrings of Diego Costa may have to reconsider after this.

For a good 75 minutes, Arsenal snuffed out Costa’s threat. It did not matter. Chelsea were still on course for victory, through the quite brilliant Eden Hazard.

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Just when Arsenal began imagining they might get a point from the game, a perfect long pass by Cesc Fabregas killed them. “

Outstanding at the back, tireless through midfield, this Chelsea team is the real deal. They are five points clear of their nearest rival, Manchester City, after seven games going into the October international break and if that margin is repeated through the season the title comes to Stamford Bridge before the first blossoms of spring.

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As the Premier League does not get won by gaps of 25 points that it unlikely to happen, but finding a way of stopping Chelsea in this form is easier said than done.

Not least because when Thibaut Courtois, arguably the best goalkeeper in the league, gets injured, his replacement is Petr Cech, arguably the second best goalkeeper in the league.

Chelsea’s strength in depth sets them apart. Jose Mourinho has built a powerful squad, full of options and nuance.

This was not the 6-0 monstering of Arsenal from a year ago, but it was impressive nonetheless.

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Aside from a Jack Wilshere shot that struck Fabregas’s hand, inspiring a penalty shout, Arsenal did not really threaten.

They had good possession, minus the cutting edge and Danny Welbeck was made to work too hard to have an impact.

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He ran and ran, but barely got a touch in an area that mattered. Chelsea cut to the heart of the matter at least twice. Once, when Hazard burst into the penalty area, again when Fabregas set up Costa for his ninth goal in seven Premier League games.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2781267/Chelsea-2-0-Arsenal-Gunners-undone-Eden-Hazard-Arsene-Wenger-continues-suffer-against-Jose-Mourinho.html#ixzz3FIZ0qGQj

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This was a defining moment of the season at this point in time. We are at best a mid-table club at best. Chelsea exposed for the pretenders that we are and have been for the past eight years.

 

 

De Futebol

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My guys from Arsenal have a hot date with Chelsea later today at Stamford Bridge. This one of those defining moments of the season. If we win we will jumped into third but this depends on what the Southampton- Tottenham match later today.

Man Shitty needed two late goals to defeat Aston Villa 2-0. The Citizens are second place with 14 points. Chelsea is two points ahead with 16. The Blues and my Arsenal guys are the only ones in the EPL without a loss. Chelsea has five wins and a draw while my Gunners have two wins and four draws.

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Arsene Wenger is winless against Jose Mourinho in twelve attempts. Will number thirteen be a lucky charm? We will find out later today.

Wenger insists the past means nothing. This sounds like a bunch of bull crap. “If football was just a repeat of the past then you wouldn’t play at all because it would be too predictable,” he said. “We have an opportunity to put things right on Sunday, so let’s take it. This team has made history because they won a trophy last year against all the odds and we have an opportunity to do it again in a big game against Chelsea.”

http://www.arsenal.com/match/report/1415/pre/first-team/chelsea-v-arsenal-match-preview

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Jose Mourinho has Arsene Wenger’s number. This can change. It is a must if we want to get outta the fourth place routine.

The Daily Mail- “Arsenal have completed their final training session ahead of their Premier League clash with Chelsea, a fixture they lost 6-0 last season.

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Aaron Ramsey and club captain Mikel Arteta will both miss the match through injury but Jack Wilshere trained without any issues as the Gunners prepared to get their revenge for last season’s defeat.

Arsene Wenger described that match at Stamford Bridge as one of the lowest points in his career while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain said it was a match he will remember for the rest of his life.

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Speaking to Arsenal.com, Chamberlain said: ‘It was a horrendous day. You would like to say it was one that you forget and don’t remember, but I’m sure it’s one that I’m going to remember for the rest of my life.

‘It was funny because I was always saying that I’d never played at Stamford Bridge. I’d been waiting a few years to play there. It definitely didn’t pan out the way I would have liked it to.’

But the 21-year-old showed no signs of fear when talking about heading back to west London, and insisted Arsenal were ready to get their revenge.

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He said: ‘They are big competition to us so we’ll be looking to go there and make a statement early on in the season. I definitely believe we can.’

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2780453/Arsenal-players-train-prepare-face-Chelsea-Premier-League.html#ixzz3FCrQssP7

My guess guided by experience tells me is that this is a must win situation for the guys. We will see how this all plays out.

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De Futebol

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Flamengo defeated América-RN, 1-0 to advance to the semifinals of the Copa do Brasil. Boo-Mengao will battle Santos in the semifinals.

O Dia Rio Grande do Norte – Na noite da última quarta-feira, o Flamengo conseguiu uma importante vitória por 1 a 0 sobre o América-RN, na Arena das Dunas, em Natal, pelas quartas de final da Copa do Brasil. O triunfo dá vantagem do empate para o time do técnico Vanderlei Luxemburgo, que elogiou o triunfo, mas já pediu foco para o jogo deste sábado, pelo Brasileirão.

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“Foi uma vitória muito boa. O América-RN, independentemente de estar em uma situação desconfortável na Série B (17ª posição), é um time muito rápido na transição. A vitória fora de casa na Copa do Brasil representa muito. Agora, é esquecer e convocar o torcedor para o jogo contra o Santos. Vai ser importante o torcedor, que é o centroavante da equipe, comparecer. A equipe vem jogando bem, e, em casa, o torcedor é fundamental”, comentou o treinador

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Vanderlei Luxemburgo revelou que vai dar descanso aos jogadores do Flamengo após a vitória sobre o América-RN e voltou a pedir a presença da torcida para ganhar do Santos. O jogo é válido pela 26ª rodada do Campeonato Brasileiro.

“O Santos é um time de muita habilidade e mobilidade, leve. Vamos descansar, fazer a recuperação e chegar ao Rio em outro momento. Vamos jogar com apoio do torcedor. É um clássico, com grandes jogadores. A torcida vai ajudar como aconteceu contra o Atlético-MG, Coritiba e outros jogos”, concluiu.

http://odia.ig.com.br/esporte/flamengo/2014-10-02/luxemburgo-festeja-vitoria-do-fla-em-natal-mas-ja-mira-duelo-com-o-santos.html

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De Futebol

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Finally the guys got it right. Danny Welbeck led the way with the hat trick 22nd, 30th and 52nd minutes. Alexis Sanchez added a goal in the 41st for a 4-1 win over Galatasaray in The Champions League Group D. After the loss to Dortmund two weeks ago my Gunners have three points and sit in second place.

Dortmund tore apart Anderlecht 3-0. Borussia Dortmund is the top dog with six points.

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Look folks this was a complete win. The guys played very well. Why can’t we do this in the EPL? Oh yeah I get it. Galatasaray sucks and we usually stink the joint out against the likes of Man Shitty, Chelsea and Liverpool. This will have to change if we want to compete for the EPL or Champions League title.

Henry Winter The Telegraph- “The smoke-trails emanated from the flare-throwing Galatasaray fans but the vapour trails from Danny Welbeck, whose pace, persistence and touch was far too much for Galatasaray. It was not simply the composed way he took his hat-trick, it was his endless, selfless running when Arsenal went down to 10 men after Wojciech Szczesny was sent off that also impressed.

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Szczesny was dispatched after 63 minutes, having brought down Burak Yilmaz who recovered to place the penalty past the incoming keeper, David Ospina.

That made it 4-1 but any hope that Cesare Prandelli’s side might have had of a recovery was ruined by Arsenal’s resolute defending and Welbeck’s willingness to keep running in attack, closing down defenders and also sprinting back to help out.

It was the type of commanding, team-minded display that will have delighted and also concerned the watching England manager, Roy Hodgson. Welbeck could have pulled a muscle as the lactic acid built up late on but he never stopped running.

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With Liverpool’s Daniel Sturridge the centre of a club-versus-country wrangle, Welbeck’s form is well-timed for Hodgson with Euro 2016 qualifying resuming next week and also great news for his Arsenal manager, Arsène Wenger, with a daunting trip to Chelsea on Sunday. Alexis Sanchez scored Arsenal’s other goal but this was all about Welbeck.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/competitions/champions-league/11134429/Arsenal-4-Galatasaray-1-Turkish-side-outclassed-by-Danny-Welbecks-flair-and-pace.html

David Hytner The Guardian-Arsène Wenger could scarcely have scripted it better. On the occasion of the 18th anniversary of his Arsenal appointment and needing a victory after the crash at Borussia Dortmund in the opening tie of this Champions League section, the manager watched his players turn on the attacking style to inflict something of a humiliation on Galatasaray.

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Danny Welbeck was the star turn, helping himself to a hat-trick – each one a perfectly sculpted finish – to ignite his career at Arsenal but he was supported by a beautifully balanced performance from the midfield, in which Mesut Özil, Alexis Sánchez, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Santi Cazorla vied for the top billing.

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Arsenal being Arsenal, there was a blot and it came when the goalkeeper, Wojciech Szczesny, a virtual bystander up until the 60th minute, left his line to clatter into Burak Yilmaz. He was punished with a red card and a penalty, which Burak scored. There was the added disappointment of Wenger having to sacrifice Sánchez to introduce his replacement goalkeeper, David Ospina. Sánchez steamed as he walked off, very slowly.

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But it was a night of positives for Arsenal and Welbeck, in particular, albeit against opponents who only seemed to turn up in the final 15 minutes and it has fired the collective confidence ahead of Sunday’s Premier League visit to Chelsea.”

http://www.theguardian.com/football/2014/oct/01/arsenal-galatasaray-champions-league-match-report

We have Chelsea up next and we are going to have to play the same way if we want to beat the Blues. The bad news is that keeper Szczesny’s red card was described this way Hytner “ Arsenal wobbled upon Szczesny’s dismissal and Galatasaray belatedly stirred. Sneidjer had three late efforts, all of which were close while Ospina saved in slightly flappy fashion from Burak and the substitute Hamit Altintop. The tie, though, finished with Cazorla being denied by a goalline clearance. It was a night when everything clicked up front for Wenger.”

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The Daily Mail- “Whisper it, but there were times when he even looked a little bit like… well, you know who.

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Him. The one. The man. The boss. It seems almost sacrilegious to make the connection after such a short space of time, but they were all thinking it, inside the Emirates Stadium. Might he be? Could he be? They all know the last time they saw finishing like this, and they knew who was responsible too. It just seemed all too soon to start thinking that way. And yet, and yet. It took Thierry Henry four seasons to score his first-hat trick for Arsenal. Danny Welbeck? Five matches.

 

Easy, easy. Steady now. It was only four days ago that Welbeck was ridiculed for swinging a boot, missing and falling over in the six-yard box against Tottenham Hotspur, only for his blushes to be spared by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. Far too sudden then to compare him to one of the greatest players of the Premier League era.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2776817/Arsenal-4-1-Galatasaray-Danny-Welbeck-scores-superb-hat-trick.html#ixzz3EvsofU9F
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De Futebol

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Jose Mourinho warned the guys this would be a tough place to play. Sporting Lisbon gave it all they had. The Blues Nemanja Matic’s header found its mark in the 34th minute to lift the Blued to the 1-0 win.

Jose Mourinho spent eighteen months as a assistant to English great Sir Bobby Robson beginning in 1992 at Sporting Lisbon. The Estadio Jose Alvalade is a horror show for visiting clubs. This is the first time five years Sporting hosted the European elite.

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Sporting Lisbon had a sixteen unbeaten streak home. Chelsea snapped this sucker in two. After a one all draw against Schalke at Stamford Bridge Chelsea need to get the big “W” in Group G. The Blues are now the main man in Group G with four points. Schalke 04 is second with two points. Third place sits NK Maribor with two points.

Dominic Fifield The Guardian suggested that one nil score as deceiving. In reality Chelsea was in complete control of this puppy. The scoreline might suggest this was a squeeze, an awkward evening of defensive resilience and a lead pilfered on the break, but that would be wildly deceptive. Chelsea actually delivered something akin to a thrashing by a solitary goal in Lisbon to make their first proper statement of intent in this group. José Mourinho appeared mystified at times that his side’s dominance was not being properly reflected but this had in reality been a happy homecoming.

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It was hard at times to comprehend quite how the visitors failed to score a hatful as Sporting Clube de Portugal heaved to contain them, only for profligacy to ensure an anxious ending.

Perhaps they were dizzied by the lazar pens shone from the stands into a number of visiting players’ eyes over the course of the evening. The management will not use that as an excuse when analysing quite why this tie had not been dispatched far earlier. A bigger lead would have allowed bodies to be rested before Sunday’s visit of Arsenal. As it was, Mourinho has been denied that privilege.

This had been billed, perhaps optimistically, as a stern test of Chelsea’s credentials, a confrontation with opponents relishing a recent renaissance and played out to a raucous din from the stands.

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Sporting had been impatient for this moment, a first home game in the Champions League proper since they were humiliated 5-0 by Bayern Munich in a last-16 tie back in February 2009. They had gone 16 games unbeaten here since in the Europa League or qualifiers, but none of those games had been against opposition of this calibre.

So clear-cut were the opportunities prised out by the visitors from the outset that Sporting’s proud record should have been in tatters long before the interval. As it was, they still retired behind then and somewhat scorched by the whole humbling experience.

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There were gaping holes in the Portuguese side’s ragged back-line from the opening exchanges, the yawning distance between the centre-halves, Mauricio and Naby Sarr, enough to have Cesc Fàbregas and Oscar – players always spying a delicate through-ball – drooling while William Carvalho struggled with his bearings at the base of the home midfield. He was eventually booked for bringing down Eden Hazard, the only surprise being he had been able to locate the Belgian to make illegal contact.

Sarr, another youngster secured from Lyon, also struggled with Hazard whenever the winger broke into a gallop. The whole rearguard was rather befuddled, an accident waiting to happen.

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Chelsea should have run riot early. Within 100 seconds of the start, Oscar had clipped Diego Costa clear to test that suspect hamstring as the Brazilian-born forward eased into space between the centre-backs and down on goal only for Rui Patrício to bring off a fine reaction save with his legs when it seemed easier for the striker to score.

Thereafter Andre Schürrle, sprightly yet profligate and unrewarded the previous week against Bolton, should have rattled up a hat-trick only for anxiety to grip each time he attempted a finish. He was most culpable when steering Hazard’s pull-back wide of the far post midway through with the goal at his mercy and Rui Patrício resigned to a concession. Mourinho, watching on in disbelief from his technical area, winced as the chance dribbled wide.

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There was a vibrancy to Chelsea’s approach play, even if the home side rather invited each wave of attack with little pressure exerted to snuff out the visitors’ possession at source. In that context the only real surprise was that the lead would eventually come from a set piece. André Carrillo floored Hazard again and Fàbregas clipped his free-kick early while Sporting dawdled. Nemanja Matic, a former Benfica player and heckled throughout, was unmarked beyond the far post to arc a well-placed header over Rui Patrício and into the net to earn the lead the visitors’ dominance had long since merited.

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So disorganised had Marco Silva’s young team been that some in their number appeared to realise the free-kick had been taken and the chance converted only once the travelling support at the opposite end of the Alvalade stirred. They had been just as ineffective as an attacking force, an isolated Islam Slimani heading Jonathan Silva’s cross down into the ground for Thibaut Courtois to claim from their clearest sight of goal.

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The home side needed to regroup, pray some complacency undermined their opponents and hope to capitalise on the reality that their deficit somehow remained so slender.

They were more urgent thereafter, Nani’s pace testing Branislav Ivanovic – even if the Serb treated plenty of his darts with disdain – but he buried a shot into the side-netting and his side remained a jumble of isolated bodies at the back.

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Chelsea’s counters were rapid, often with players liberated on the halfway line only for desperate late challenges to save the day. Oscar again found himself alone in enemy territory but Rui Patrício thwarted his shot with Schürrle pleading for a square pass at the Brazilian’s side.

They even broke from potentially dangerous Sporting free-kicks on the edge of Courtois’ area. Yet with each miss the fear grew that, when the hosts did build up a spell of momentum, it might yield barely credible parity.

http://www.theguardian.com/football/2014/sep/30/sporting-lisbon-chelsea-champions-league-match-report

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