soccer insights Swansea City

Soccer Insights Feb Vol. 4

Drama at Stamford Bridge upsets Jose Mourinho, Barcelona suffer a shocking defeat, a goalkeeper scores in the Bundesliga, and Parma may not exist by the end of the season – just another week of European football!

Premier League

Aston Villa 1-2 Stoke
Chelsea 1-1 Burnley
Crystal Palace 1-2 Arsenal
Everton 2-2 Leicester
Hull 2-1 QPR
Manchester City 5-0 Newcastle
Southampton 0-2 Liverpool
Sunderland 0-0 West Brom
Swansea 2-1 Manchester United
Tottenham 2-2 West Ham

1. Chelsea 60pts
2. Man City 55pts
3. Arsenal 48pts
4. Man United 47pts
5. Southampton 46pts

Talking points
• Jose Mourinho was not a happy bunny after Chelsea’s draw with Burnley, highlighting four key minutes of the match where decisions went against his team, and appearing on Sky Sports the next morning to talk more about the incidents. The most controversial moment was when Ashley Barnes escaped punishment for a reckless challenge on Nemanja Matic, who reacted badly and got sent off.
• Swansea did the double over Manchester United for the first time in their history, following their opening day win at Old Trafford. Ander Herrera gave the Red Devils the lead, only for Ki and Gomis to turn it around for the Swans.
• Manchester City warmed up for their European meeting with Barcelona by thrashing a dismal Newcastle side 5-0. Wilfried Bony made his debut from the bench but was unable to mark the occasion with a goal.

La Liga

Athletic Bilbao 1-0 Rayo Vallecano
Atletico Madrid 3-0 Almeria
Barcelona 0-1 Malaga
Cordoba 1-2 Valencia
Deportivo 0-2 Celta Vigo
Elche 0-2 Real Madrid
Getafe 2-1 Espanyol
Levante 2-1 Granada
Real Sociedad 4-3 Sevilla
Villarreal 1-0 Eibar

1. Real Madrid 60pts
2. Barcelona 56pts
3. Atletico Madrid 53pts
4. Valencia 50pts
5. Sevilla 45pts

Talking points
• Barcelona entered their home match with Malaga on an 11-match winning run, but suffered a shock defeat when an under hit back-pass from Dani Alves was pounced upon.
• Ronaldo looks to have found his scoring boots again. After netting the opening goal in Madrid’s midweek win over Schalke, the forward scored his teams’ second in a comfortable away win over Elche.
• Antoine Griezmann is enjoying a fine first season at Vicente Calderon. The Frenchman scored twice in Atletico Madrid’s home win, taking his tally to the season to 14, behind only Ronaldo, Messi and Neymar.


Augsburg 2-2 Bayer Leverkusen
Hamburg 1-1 Borussia Monchengladbach
Freiburg 1-1 Hoffenheim
Koln 1-1 Hannover
Mainz 3-1 Frankfurt
Paderborn 0-6 Bayern Munich
Schalke 1-1 Werder Bremen
Stuttgart 2-3 Borussia Dortmund
Wolfsburg 2-1 Hertha Berlin

1. Bayern Munich 55pts
2. Wolfsburg 47pts
3. B. M’gladbach 37pts
4. Schalke 35pts
5. Augsburg 35pts

Talking points
• Augsburg goalkeeper Marwin Hitz made history as only the third to score from open play in the Bundesliga. The Swiss keeper was playing for the first time since November after a knee injury and popped up to score an unlikely equaliser.
• Bayern Munich followed their 8-0 win over Hamburg by only putting six past Paderborn. Arjen Robben scored twice to make it 16 for the season, the best in the league.
• The Dortmund post-winter revival continues, a win at bottom placed Stuttgart making it three on the bounce. They now sit 12th in the table, but are just 10 points off the top four.

Serie A

Cagliari 1-2 Inter Milan
Empoli 3-0 Chievo
Fiorentina 1-1 Torino
Juventus 2-1 Atalanta
Lazio 2-1 Palermo
Milan 2-0 Cesena
Napoli 2-0 Sassuolo
Parma P-P Udinese
Verona 1-1 Roma

1. Juventus 57pts
2. Roma 48pts
3. Napoli 45pts
4. Lazio 40pts
5. Fiorentina 39pts

Talking points
• Parma are in desperate financial trouble, and had to postpone their game with Udinese as they could not afford the cost of policing and stewards. Their ability to finish the rest of the Serie A season is a major doubt, as indeed is their entire future. It’s a far cry from the team of the late 90s that included the likes of Buffon, Thuram, Cannavaro, Veron and Crespo.
• Inter are starting to find their form under Roberto Mancini. A third successive win lifted them to 8th and keeps them in the hunt for European qualification.
• A trademark long-range strike from Francesco Totti put Roma in front at Verona, but they ended up dropping two more points as their Scudetto hopes fade further.

Ligue 1

Bastia 2-1 Lille
Caen 4-1 Lens
Evian P-P Lorient
Guingamp 0-2 Montpellier
Lyon 1-0 Nantes
Nice 0-1 Monaco
PSG 3-1 Toulouse
Reims 0-0 Metz
Rennes 1-1 Bordeaux
St Etienne 2-2 Marseille

1. Lyon 54pts
2. PSG 52pts
3. Marseille 50pts
4. Monaco 43pts
5. St Etienne 42pts

Talking points
• PSG youngster Adrien Rabiot scored twice and Thiago Silva added another to give the capital club an important win in the three horse race for the title.
• Marseille suffered yet more away day blues. They looked set for a crucial victory only to concede a 91st minute goal and slip to four points off the lead.
• Lyon secured a narrow home win as they kept top spot in the league. They may be the underdogs of the three sides challenging for the title, but they keep grinding out results week after week.

What to look out for next week

• Premier League – a big game in the title race and the battle for the top four takes place at Anfield when Liverpool host Manchester City on Sunday
• League Cup – also on Sunday, the first piece of silverware in England is up for grabs at Wembley when Chelsea take on Spurs
• La Liga – Real Madrid take on an impressive Villarreal side on Sunday
• Bundesliga – one of the biggest games in Germany is the Ruhr derby between Dortmund and Schalke; they clash on Saturday
• Serie A – if Roma are to have any chance of toppling Juventus, then three points is a must when they meet on Monday
• Ligue 1 – PSG will need all of their firepower to be on form when they go to Monaco to take on the league’s stingiest defence

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Greg Bortkiewicz