Deadline transfers, UEFA Europa League group stage draw and all the action from the most important soccer leagues. A new edition of Soccer Insights for you:
UEFA Europa League
UEFA held a draw for the Europa league Group Stage early on Friday, revealing some exciting matchups that you could easily mistake by Champions League games. Group A looks really interesting, with former historical clubs such as Ajax, Celtic and Fenerbahçe taking on the modest Molde. We’ll also keep an eye on Borussia Dortmund, a club we had seen in the Champions League during the past few years, but will compete in the Europa League due to an awful first semester in the most recent Bundesliga season.
The transfer period gets wild during the last hours, as last minute signings occur at any time. Some interesting movements did occur, being Chicharito Hernandez to Bayer Leverkusen the most notorious of them all. The Mexican star will play for the German side until 2018, with hopes of getting more minutes than with Manchester United and Real Madrid. It has also been widely reported that Real Madrid couldn’t sign Spanish goalkeeper David De Gea due to Manchester United sending the required documentations two minutes after the transfer window had closed for La Liga, a quite curious situation having in mind that everyone took the deal for granted. Here are the most relevant transfers from the last few days:
|Javier Hernández||Manchester United||Bayer Leverkusen|
|Jesús Corona||FC Twente||FC Porto|
|Miguel Layún||Watford FC||FC Porto|
|Adnan Januzaj||Manchester United||Borussia Dortmund|
|Julian Draxler||Schalke 04||VFL Wolfsburg|
|Kevin De Bruyne||VFL Wolfsburg||Manchester City|
|Anthony Martial||AS Monaco||Manchester United|
|Ramiro Funes Mori||River Plate||Everton|
|Victor Ibarbo||AS Roma||Watford FC|
|Stoke City||0-1||West Brom|
- Manchester City continue to be unstoppable. Watford was their most recent victim in a game where Raheem Sterling scored his first Premier League goal with the Citizens.
- Three big upsets took place: Manchester United lost to Swansea, Liverpool was overwhelmed by West Ham and Crystal Palace shocked current champions Chelsea.
- Arsenal still has scoring problems, they defeated Newcastle, but thanks to an own-goal by Fabricio Coloccini. The Gunners have scored 3 goals in four games, none of them at home.
|Real Madrid||5-0||Real Betis|
|Sevilla||0-3||Atlético de Madrid|
|Valencia||1-1||Deportivo de La Coruña|
|Real Sociedad||0-0||Sporting de Gijón|
|Celta de Vigo||3-0||Rayo Vallecano|
|1||Celta de Vigo||6pts|
|3||Atlético de Madrid||6pts|
- Real Madrid achieved their first victory under Rafael Benitez’ command. Colombian star James Rodríguez had a great game, scoring two ‘golazos’ for them.
- Neither Cristiano Ronaldo nor Messi have scored so far in La Liga.
- Eibar has defeated Athletic Club for the first time in their history.
|B. Dortmund||3-1||Hertha BSC|
|Bayern Munich||3-0||B. Leverkusen|
|VFL Wolfsburg||3-0||Schalke 04|
|Werder Bremen||2-1||B. Mönchengladbach|
|FC Köln||2-1||Hamburger SV|
|Mainz 05||3-0||Hannover 96|
|FC Augsburg||0-1||Ingolstadt 04|
|SV Darmstadt 98||0-0||Hoffenheim|
- Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich have not dropped any points yet. It seems that the two of them will fight for the title again, being closely followed by Wolfsburg.
- Stuttgart and Mönchengladbach have lost all of their three games. The situation could get worse if the don’t manage to win any of their upcoming games, and relegation could become a real threat later in the season.
- Thomas Müller leads the goalscoring table with 5 goals. He scored a brace against Bayer Leverkusen.
- AS Roma defeated Juventus, who had never lost the first two games since the establishment of Serie A as the top league of Italy.
- Chievo Verona shocked Lazio with a 4-0 score, they sit at the top of the table, along with other four clubs.
- The newly promoted clubs – Empoli, Frosinone and Carpi – have yet to get any points in this season. I’t too early to make any judgements, but it’s not a good sign of what’s to come.
- Angel Di María finally made his PSG debut. He entered when they were already winning 2-0 at Monaco, and only needed 17 minutes to make a perfect pass to Edinson Cavani for the third goal.
- Nabil Fekir, a young and promising player, has scored four goals in four games with Lyon. He recently signed a extension with the French side, and some say Manchester United is closely following his steps.
- Reims, Rennes and Angers have shown pretty good performances in the beginning of the season, and it would be an interesting development if they manage to keep up with the top teams.
|New York Red Bulls||3-0||D.C. United|
|Philadelphia Union||0-1||New England Revolution|
|Orlando City SC||1-1||Chicago Fire|
|Colorado Rapids||2-1||Sporting Kansas City|
|FC Dallas||2-0||Real Salt Lake|
|Houston Dynamo||2-0||Vancouver Whitecaps|
|Seattle Sounders FC||2-1||Portland Timbers|
|San Jose Earthquakes||1-0||LA Galaxy|
|New York City FC||1-2||Columbus Crew SC|
|Toronto FC||2-1||Montreal Impact|
|2||NY Red Bulls||42pts|
- Seattle Sounders got the victory in an intense game against Portland Timbers. Three goals and five yellow cards were part of the final balance.
- Toronto FC’s Sebastian Giovinco got sidelined due to injury, and will miss the two next games with Italy. The Canadian team claims he will be ready to play again next week.
- LA Galaxy fantasy month came to an end. They had won all their three August games, but couldn’t keep the pace against San Jose Earthquakes.
- Cruz Azul’s awful form continued, the lost to América in a new edition of the “Clásico Joven”. Despite all the criticism from both fans and press, the club decided to back coach Sergio Bueno.
- León, UNAM and América continue to be unstoppable. They’re slowly getting close to secure a place in the playoffs.
- Chivas finally managed to win again, having a great game against Chiapas at home. Relegation is still dangerously close, so they¡ll have to up their play.
What to look out for this weekend
International break – The top leagues will not see action this weekend, as most players have reported for duty with their national teams. These are some games worth watching:
- USMNT vs Peru – Friday, September 4 at 7:30 p.m. ET on Fox Sports/Univisión
- Portugal vs France – Friday, September 4 at 2:45 p.m. ET on ESPN2/FOX Deportes
- Mexico vs Trinidad and Tobago – Friday, September 4 at 10:00 p.m. ET on ESPN3/Univisión
- Brazil vs Costa Rica – Saturday, September 5 at 4:00 p.m. ET on beIN SPORTS Connect
- Colombia vs Peru – Tuesday, September 8 at 8:00 p.m. ET (no TV in the U.S.)
- USA vs Brazil – Tuesday, September 8 at 8:40 p.m. ET on ESPN2/Univisión
- Argentina vs Mexico – Tuesday, September 8 at 7:30 p.m. ET on Univisión