Originally written on Finishers Forum  |  Last updated 4/1/13
(Podcast) Football Weekly: Sunderland go for broke and bring in Paolo Di Canio - As well as rounding up the rest of the action from the top and bottom of the Premier League, we’ve got a bumper middle section where we hear from Sid Lowe and Rafa Honigstein about the Champions League quarter finals…. (The Guardian) Passing & possession not helping Aston Villa, says Robbie Savage - In many ways, Villa’s performance against the Reds summed up their season, and you can see why they are in the bottom three and in a relegation battle. When things were going well for Paul Lambert’s side in the first-half and they could play to their strengths on the counter-attack, they looked dangerous… (BBC Sport) Gerrard rolls back years to inspire Reds - Steven Gerrard’s days as a box-to-box midfielder were supposed to be over. As the years pass, many a dynamic presence has to restrict himself to ever smaller areas of the pitch. As his 33rd birthday nears, along with the retirement of his brother in arms, Jamie Carragher, the Liverpool captain starts to look an anomaly in a team whose focus is firmly on the future… (ESPN FC) Chelsea vs, Manchester United: Demba Ba nets brilliant winner - The Rafa Benitez era has been a Stale one for Chelsea, but they’re still in with a chance to win the FA Cup for the second consecutive year. They’re through to the semifinal after defeating Manchester United in their quarterfinal replay at Stamford Bridge. The Blues looked like the more dangerous side for most of the match and produced one terrific goal in a 1-0 victory… (SB Nation) … Tactics Board: Flexible Everton punish Potters - It was Everton, but not as most people recognise them. Deprived of two of their most influential players, Steven Pienaar and Marouane Fellaini, by suspension, David Moyes ditched his usual 4-4-1-1 formation, 4-4-1-1, and defeated Stoke.   In doing so, he ensured a third successive meeting of very different shapes. Rare as they are in England, back threes have become a feature of recent games at Goodison Park… (ESPN FC) Arsenal boss Wenger: Gervinho’s finishing down to confidence - Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has admitted Gervinho is not “clinical” in front of goal, despite the striker netting the opener in Saturday’s 4-1 win over Reading.   The Cote d’Ivoire international grabbed his second goal in as many games to set the Gunners on their way to victory against the Royals at the Emirates Stadium… (Yahoo Sports) Tottenham switch focus to the Europa League after victory over Swansea - Tottenham are up to third in the Premier League, ahead of Chelsea, and André Villas-Boas will not rule out overhauling Manchester City for the runners-up spot – which would be Spurs’ highest finish for 50 years. However, he came away from the Liberty Stadium with another priority on his mind… (The Gaurdian) Previewing the Champions League quarterfinals - With the Champions League quarterfinals beginning Tuesday, here is a statistical look at the four matches this week, complete with Soccer Power Index projections… (5 Aside – ESPN) Marco Rues explains how the Dortmund philosophy has made the club such a threat in the Champions League - Marco Reus ambles into the room with his goofy grin and amiable chit-chat belying his increasingly imposing reputation in European football. He ruffles his shock of skewed blonde hair, looking like he’s just rolled out of bed at four in the afternoon, and shrugs shyly when remembering the latest two goals he scored for Germany in last week’s predictable 4-1 cruise against Kazakhstan as they established an eight-point lead at the head of their World Cup qualifying group… (The Guardian) Robbie Rogers: ‘It will take time for more gay footballers to come out’ – video interview - Footballer Robbie Rogers talks to Donald McRae about coming out as gay and why he chose to retire. The American former Leeds United winger also speaks about how football must change. He believes footballers are not homophobic, but that a ‘pack mentality’ contributes to a stigma that still surrounds out sportsmen… (The Guardian)
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