- Can Leicester or Arsenal get a major three points this weekend? – The answer is no for both of these two teams. These two played out a rather dull game this weekend in which neither team found the back of the net. Arsenal had the majority of possession but only managed 4 shots on target. Leicester City only managed 1 shot on target. The game might have been different as Hector Bellerin seemed to have tripped Ahmed Musa in the penalty area, but no penalty was given in extra time. For Arsenal, it was a better display than last week but it was still not good enough. Both of the Manchester clubs have looked really good and Chelsea has won both of their opening games. Both of these teams need to get a win before the international break in a couple weeks, and Ozil and Giroud should be back in the starting lineup next weekend after making substitution appearances this weekend.
- How will the big three in Spain start the season? – Two of the big three started very impressively. Barcelona started the season with a bang as they defeated Real Betis 6-2. The front three looked very good this weekend. Arda Turan opened the scoring, Messi scored a fantastic brace, and Suarez came away with his first hat trick of the season. Denis Suarez, Samuel Umtiti, and Lucas Digne all made their debuts for Barcelona. On Sunday, Real Madrid got a world class performance from Gareth Bale as he scored a brace with a goal for debutant Marco Asensio. Asensio looks like he could be a great signing for Real Madrid. Cristiano looks to be back next weekend so it will be interesting to see how Zidane fits Asensio into the team. Atletico Madrid came away from the weekend looking up at the other two thanks to a 95th minute goal from Manu Garcia for Alaves. We did not see a goal in the first 89 minutes of the game. Then in the added time at the end of the second half there were two goals scored, Kevin Gameiro scored the first goal in the 93rd minute and then Garcia leveled the score. Each team would come away with a point. Overall the big three look strong and will be tough all season for the rest of the teams across Europe.
- How big of a loss is Pogba for Juventus? – The loss was apparently not as big this weekend as they went on to defeat Fiorentina 2-1 this weekend. Kwadwo Asamoah, Mario Lemina, and Sami Khedira all played very well and Miralem Pjanic did not make an appearance for the team. The only new signing to start the game was Dani Alves. He played okay but was not the standout of the game. Sami Khedira opened the scoring in the first half. Juventus looked to be cruising but then in the 70th minute Nikola Kalinic scored to level the game at 1 apiece. The tie would not last long as big money transfer Gonzalo Higuain scored in the 75th minute. The substitute gave Juventus the point and made a statement having come on only 9 minutes prior to scoring. If this is a glimpse of what Higuain is going to do this season, then it looks like the rest of Italy might be in trouble.
- Can Lyon hold on to Alexandre Lacazette and maintain their great start? – All of the news coming out of Lyon is that Lacazette is not on the move and that he will be staying in Lyon. I certainly hope this is true as he is on fire and scoring for fun. He scored two more this weekend to make it 5 in 2 games. The win means that Lyon stays on top of the table as one of only three teams to win both of their opening games. PSG maintained their perfect start this weekend as well with their 3-0 win over Metz. Cavani seems to be struggling this season in the spotlight, but I think that time will only help him especially with how well Angel Di Maria is playing. Nice is the third team to win both of their games this season as they defeated Angers this weekend and Stade Rennais last weekend.
- How will the Friday night games work out in England? – After the first Friday night game, I think the verdict is good, as the game seemed to have a great atmosphere and this is a great platform for the Premier League to increase their influence on the sports world. This Friday, we saw Manchester United win 2-0 thanks to Zlatan Ibrahimovic. He scored a goal in each half, including one from the spot in the second half. I think that the idea of a Friday night game is awesome, however, it will be difficult to get good ratings in the United States thanks to work hours and the time change. This will probably go over very well in England, but only time will tell how fans feel towards this Friday night game.
The score after Week 2 (This week’s score)
Me – 17 (7)
Brad – 15 (11)
Some soccer to watch this week…
UEFA Champions League Qualification Round 4 Second Leg ~ Tuesday and Wednesday
UEFA Europa League Qualification Round 4 Second Leg ~ Thursday
England League Cup Round 2 ~ Tuesday and Wednesday
French Coupe de la Ligue Round 2 ~ Tuesday