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Soccer Wednesday: Your Running Commentary

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The are important matches in domestic cup play across a number of countries, none of which is more intriguing than the Coppa Italia battle between AC Milan and Juventus. 

The top two teams in Serie A open their anticipated semifinal tie at the San Siro after easing past top-notch competition in the quarterfinals. Juventus breezed by Roma with a 3-0 win, while Milan took care of Lazio with a 3-1 result.

Barcelona is a result away from making the final of another competition and currently holds an away-goals advantage on Valencia after their 1-1 draw in the first leg of the Copa del Rey semifinals last week. Barring an upset at Camp Nou, Lionel Messi & Co. will get the chance to play for their 14th trophy in the Pep Guardiola era.

Here's the viewing schedule for the day's remaining televised matches:

2:30 p.m. – – Stuttgart vs. Bayern Munich (DFB Pokal)

2:45 p.m. – Fox Soccer Channel – Middlesbrough vs. Sunderland (FA Cup)

2:45 p.m. – – Juventus vs. AC Milan (Coppa Italia)

3 p.m. – GOLTV – Barcelona vs. Valencia (Copa del Rey)

If you will be watching any of Wednesday's matches, please feel free to share any thoughts, opinions and some play-by-play in the comments section below. Enjoy the action.


  1. Those guys have played for top, top, top clubs. That’s the main reason they don’t always start. Crouchie is also a guy with an extreme set of strengths and weakness, so he has to be managed carefully according to matchups and styles. Anelka is also an attitude issue (he didn’t earn the nickname “Le Sulk” for nothing).

    I think Jozy’s a good team guy in general, and he makes his teammates better. He holds up the ball much better now, he combines and passes very well. I would see his main issues as poor training habits, effort on defense, and general improvements on nuances of positioning, timing of runs, etc. He’s still getting minutes, producing goals, improving and learning in a good development league, so personally, I’m not upset.

  2. While undoubtably the confidence aspect is important, I would like to think a professional coach can understand when a guy is playing well vs. scoring ‘less-meaningful’ goals in blowouts. Playing time ideally, is given to the players who make the team better whether they score the goals or not. Anelka and Crouch are two guys that come to mind for strikers who scored a lot but didn’t start as often as their tally would suggest.

    I’m just rattling some ideas around, not criticizing Josmer. He’s got 11, 2/3 of the way thru the season, that’s good work no matter when they come.

  3. Well, who’s a more prolific scored between the two is a bit of a wash.

    11 goals all comps
    0.51 goals / 90 min
    0.35 goals / appearance

    7 goals all comps
    0.44 goals / 90 min
    0.24 goals / appearance

    Too lazy now to check who has scored in more individual matches.

  4. Goals are NEVER meaningless to a striker. Strikers thrive on confidence and confidence comes through goals. Playing time also comes through goals. Scoring 2 goals in a league match is always a big deal, especially for a striker who is on a goal drought. This also gives him 11 goals in all competitions for AZ. It’s nice for him to get into double digits for the first time as a club player.

  5. well, ADO was broken by the time he came in, but 2 goals in 15 min is a faster rate than 3 goals in ~75,

    Problem is, his main competition is a similarly-aged Dutch player.

    It does seem, though, like he’s taking his recent bench role with a little more humility than some of his past career hurdles.

  6. You’re right Eric, all he can do is try and score. Like I said, it was a bit mean-spirited on my part but the concern is if those goals come only in games already decided and when he comes on in 1-0 games, nothing. I’m not saying this is necessarily the case but it’s something to watch out for.

    That said, hey, he scored two! Hooaah.

  7. I somewhat agree but you have to take advantage of the opportunities that you’re given. If you’re a player coming on a sub in the 85th minute of the game, you’re going to try and score and prove that you deserve more time. It doesn’t matter if you’re already up 5-0. Your goal is to make the most out of every second of your playing time, which Jozy appears to have done.

    The question is whether this will translate to more time again soon. Either way, it certainly can’t hurt his chances.

  8. When I was a rabid baseball fan, I had a term for the meaningless home runs that had no impact on the game and the penchant for some guys to get homers in those situations: Bonilla-esque. (never was a Bobby Bo fan).

    I know it’s crappy but it came to mind when I saw Jozy’s pair of goals today. I hope he gets some meaningful time and scores in some meaningful situations.


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