Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Four Things (From Scott for New Year's)

Like Sparky, Scott only has four fingers 
photo by Jeff Kubinavia PhotoRee

From Scott for the New Year:

1- That’s more like it.  After a disappointing Christmas, Liverpool was back to better business with a comfortable 2-0 home win over Hull City and another 2-0 win over Oldham Athletic in the FA Cup.  Inexplicably, I could watch West Ham get hammered by Nottingham Forest but could not find my beloved Reds on the telly.  We’ve come a long way in this country but that was a travesty.  Ultimately, I had to settle for watching a bit of Chelsea’s dispatch of Derby County which at least allowed me to see the on-loan Andre Wisdom who played well for the stretch I saw in the first half.

2- Talking points. Gerrard coming on as a substitute against Hull City and playing 30 minutes was a very welcome sight, indeed, for a depleted Liverpool squad.  What is not welcome is the increasing number of fouls on Luis Suarez, often without consequence.  And I’m not talking about the ticky-tack fouls either.  Now that Suarez has stopped his diving and often stays up when he could go down, the next step is for him to shred his SAG card.  Only then will the referees adjudge more fairly when he tumbles. 

3- FA Cup tackles are harder.  I have to admit that I have not seen nearly as many FA Cup games as I have Premier League games.  But I find it hard to imagine that the smattering of those that I have are outliers when it comes to crunching tackles.  It seems the confluence of nerves, excitement and desire to prove something inevitably leads to borderline (and then some) challenges by the “lesser” team.  It certainly makes for good TV but I can’t say I like to see Gerrard, Suarez & Co. involved.

4- Kaká reaches 100 goals for AC Milan.  I couldn’t be happier for the Brazilian who was never able to make his mark at Real Madrid but still packs a punch at 31 years of age.  I still remember him scoring the lone goal to lift his national team over Croatia at the 2006 World Cup.  Even though the game was being played in Germany, I happened to be in Rio de Janeiro and the roar through that city when he struck was most likely louder than its Bavarian counterpart.  I see him as one of the good guys in soccer and like to cheer for him.  Parabéns, Kaká!

This is farlieonfootie for January 8.

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