EL BARRIO, EL FALLS: So, our very own Ben Whitney thinks I spend too much time on my first paragraph. Apparently I should not be informing and setting the tone. If Ben had a customary style to how he started I would mock him to but I will leave him to his hodge-podge openings. Anyway, today we be a Soccer Saturday piece, I will discuss: Zinedine Zidane, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, and Red Bull New York.
Zinedine Zidane: I know most readers and fans don’t follow soccer, let alone Spanish league but Zinedine Zidane is the new manager of Real Madrid. Zidane is a club legend, he had a distinguished career with Real as a player (see above photo) winning several league titles and European titles with the club. He originally took over 4 seasons ago in the middle of a failing season, keep in mind in a league that is essentially 3 giants and 15 also rans, not crushing the also rans is a problem, he lead Real to a European title. The club won 3 consecutive European titles and a league title too. However, he felt the players he had were getting old and wanted to do a bit of a clear out. The club president that handles buying and selling players said no, I make those decisions. So the club got rid of the wrong old players kept the wrong old players and bought guys not good enough. The club fired two managers this season that were unfortunately set-up to fail as the club didn’t listen to Zidane. So now 10 months later the club president is back, hat in hand, to give him back his job and agree to Zidane’s terms regarding giving him a say in players that are kept, sold and bought.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: Like Zidane, Ole is a club legend and it looks like the club will hire him full-time. I was describing to someone as like the Chicago Bears hiring Mike Singletary after the AAF season is finished and they are 1-6 with 9 games left. And now with 2 games left in the season, the team is 6-7 with an outside chance of the playoffs. The Bears would have to hire him right? After returning the club to its traditional style of play, Man U are in place to claim a European Champions league spot for next season. They just knocked out one of the richest clubs in Europe to make the quarters of this season’s Champions league. The fans love him, club alumnus love him and the players love him. You often hear the importance of showing up and just do your job and let the rest take care of itself. This guy did hat and he will get his reward for it.
Red Bull New York Choke again: What is it with being a New York sports fan and these teams choking in playoffs. While in the Concacaf playoffs, the Red Bulls choked at home and lost 2-0. In the return leg in Mexico, the Red Bulls scored 2 goals in the first 10 minutes to make the aggregate score 2-2 with 80 minutes to go. Rather than kick on and win it they go on to allow 4 goals in the second half to lose 4-2. I guess they really are a NY team after all.