A Look Back at Week 5

  1. How will Manchester United respond? – The answer is not well.  The score at half time could have been 2 or 3 to 0 in favor of Watford, but it was just 1-0 to Etienne Capoue. Marcus Rashford equalized in the second half. Just a minute after coming on Camilo Zuniga scored the go ahead goal and then in the 95th minute thanks to a Marouane Fellaini foul.  Troy Deeney would score the penalty and give Jose Mourinho his third straight loss. Mourinho blamed the ref, luck, and his left back but in reality it was a bad display from his team for the third straight game. The pressure will only go up on United and there will be more and more questions asked of Mourinho. How long does Rooney stay in the team is going to be the question on everyone’s mind.
  2. Which team will get their first win in the Bundesliga? – The answer is Mainz. Mainz took on Augsburg this weekend and defeated them 3-1 thanks to goals from Jhon Cordoba, Yunus Malli, and Yoshinori Muto. That win sent them into the top half of the table.  Hoffenheim remains unbeaten but are still yet to win a game this season as they drew 0-0 with Wolfsburg. The other four teams still remain winless. Werder Bremen took a massive step as they sacked their manager Viktor Skripnik after starting the season scoring 2 goals and conceding 12 in their 3 defeats. Ingolstadt took an early lead against Munich but then conceded 3 goals including an amazing one by Xabi Alonso. Hamburger were defeated comprehensively by Leipzig 4-0. Finally, Hertha Berlin continued their undefeated start to the season as they defeated Schalke to keep Schalke in the bottom 2.  We will have to wait and see if these five teams can get their first win during the week.
  3. Can Napoli put some pressure on Juventus and Roma? – The answer is yes. Napoli defeated Bologna 3-1 on Saturday.  Jose Callejon scored first.  Bologna equalized in the second half before Arek Milik scored twice. On Sunday, both Juventus and Roma were defeated.  Inter defeated Juventus 2-1.  Frank de Boer’s men played wonderfully. They fell behind in the second half but battled back thanks to Icardi and Perisic.  Fiorentina defeated Roma in the last game on Sunday. Milan Badelj scored the winner in the 83rd minute.  This means that Napoli is now on top of the table. Juventus sit 1 point behind them as they lost their first game.  Roma are 3 points behind the leaders. This was a great weekend for Napoli.
  4. How long does Pako Ayestaran have? – Well he is still the manager despite the fact that Valencia sits on the bottom of the table as the only team in Spain that still has not earned a point. They lost the game 2-1 but did look better. Alvaro Medran opened the scoring for Valencia in the 2nd minute. After that, Aduriz scored twice before halftime. No one scored in the second half of the game. This was an interesting game and Valencia looked better, but the pressure will continue to mount. They host Deportivo Alaves this week and then Leganes this weekend. If they do not get a point following these two matches, I cannot see Pako lasting long.
  5. How will the rest of the league respond following PSG’s 6-0 win today? – Monaco responded well with a 3-0 win over Stade Rennais. This win sent them back to the top of the table. Nice drew 1-1 with Montpellier thanks to a very late goal by Younes Belhanda. Lyon has continued to struggle as they failed to find the net without Lacazette. They drew 0-0 with Marseille. Monaco is on the top of the table now with a 2 point lead on Nice and a 3 point lead on PSG and Metz. This is starting to become a really interesting race in France, especially if Monaco and Nice can stay unbeaten for a couple more weeks. 

The Score After Week 5

Me – 41 (11)
Brad – 29 (4)

5 Games to Watch This Week

There is a full round of games in Spain, Germany, Italy, and France plus the League Cup resumes in England.

Barcelona vs. Atletico Madrid – This is the first big showdown between any of the big three in Spain as Atletico Madrid travels to Catalunya to face Barcelona. Both teams looked really strong at the weekend. The big question will be who plays for Barcelona at center back and who plays in the number 9 role for Atletico. Will it be Mascherano or Umtiti? Torres or Gameiro?

My Pick – Barcelona 2, Atletico 1: Suarez, Messi, and Griezmann
Brad’s Pick – Barcelona 2, Atletico 1: Neymar, Messi, and Griezmann

Bayern Munich vs. Hertha Berlin – This is the big game in Germany between the two teams to start the season perfectly so far with 3 wins from 3. Carlo Ancelotti has gotten of to a great start at Bayern Munich with 11 goals for and just 1 conceded. Their opponents have also been really strong this season defensively, conceding only 1 goal this season. Can Hertha stay with Bayern in this game or will the defending champions just be too much?

My Pick – Bayern 2, Hertha 1: Lewandowski, Mueller, Weiser
Brad’s Pick – Bayern 4, Hertha 1: Mueller (2), Lewandowski (2), and Ibesvic

Milan vs. Lazio – AC Milan has been hot and cold this season with two wins and two losses. They take on a Lazio side on Tuesday that sits in the top four and is within striking distance of a Champions League spot. Look for Lazio to go joint top of the table if they can get the type of performance they expect out of Felipe Anderson.

My Pick – Milan 1, Lazio 2: Bacca, Anderson, Immobile
Brad’s Pick – Milan 1, Lazio 3: Montolivo, Parolo (2), Immobile

Nice vs. Monaco – The top two teams in France meet this week as Monaco travels to Nice. They are the only two undefeated teams left in France so that is bound to change this week. Mario Balotelli has been a great addition to Nice. PSG will be hopeful that both teams might slip up this season.

My Pick – Nice 2, Monaco 3: Belhanda, Balotelli, Falcao, Fabinho, and Silva
Brad’s Pick – Nice 1, Monaco 2: Seri, Germain, and Moutinho

Leicester City vs. Chelsea – This is one of the more interesting League Cup fixtures this week in England. The last two champions in England meet in Leicester. Leicester seems to be getting their footing this season as Chelsea has failed to win their last two games. Which one of these two teams will make it on to the next stage?

My Pick – Leicester 2, Chelsea 1: Slimani, Mahrez, and Hazard
Brad’s Pick – Leicester 1, Chelsea 2: Mahrez, Oscar, and Costa

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