Wednesday, December 31, 2003 

Winter transfers season opens today in France

31 of December means more than just the end of the year to the french football. Today the winter transfer season will start and Paris Saint German it´s strongly on the market. Several players are being refered by the newspapers as being close to sign for PSG: Dhorasoo (from Lyon), Everson (from Nice), Kapo (from Auxerre), Ljuboja (from Strasbourg), Wiltord (from Arsenal), Moreira (from Lens), Carrière (from Lyon).

The big star in the transfer list it´s without doubhts Wiltord. The striker from Arsenal would be the perfect man to make a partnership with the portuguese goalscorer Pauleta in the PSG attack. Other strong option it´s ofcurse the powerfull Moreira. In the next days everything will be clear.

Tuesday, December 30, 2003 

Van Bommel is back



PSV midfielder Mark van Bommel was troubled a groin injury in the middle of October 2003 and eventually, about two weeks later, straight after the PSV-Ajax league clash, underwent groin surgery. The dutch international is now back to the fields and looking forward to joining the first team squad on 5th January 2004 for their training camp in Turkey.

 

Paulo Cesar moves to Santos



PSG lend the brasilian international Paulo Cesar to Santos until the end of the season. The Brazilian club have the option of buying the right defender in the end of the loan contract.

Monday, December 29, 2003 

Kaladze banned for 2 matches



The Georgian defender will join Nesta as absents for the next Serie A match against AS Roma on January 6th, after being banned for 2 matches, following the sending off on the game against Udinese, that AC Milan lost 1-2.

 

Marcelo Salas out for 2 months



Marcelo Salas will be out of competition for at least two months, following the injury sustained at the Copa Sudamericana final.

At the time it appeard to be a small injury, but a recent medical exam showed a 6cm tear in a muscle in his left leg.

Due to this injury, the Chilean striker will miss the first games of 2004 wich include the start of the Clausura Tournament and Copa Libertadores, for River Plate, and World Cup Qualifying games for the Chile National Team.

 

Leonardo Astrada is the new River Plate coach



As previously announced by Football United, Leonardo Astrada will assume the coaching position at Buenos Aires team, River Plate, after the former coach, Manuel Pellegrini, left the team, following the defeat in the Copa Sudamericana final.

El Jefe, former star midfielder for Los Milionarios, will be officialy presented as the new coach on January 8th, two days before the team starts working on pre-season, to prepare the Clausura Tournament and the Copa Libertadores.

 

Dutch First Division Standings and Overlook



Pos. Team Pts
1 Ajax 37
2 PSV 37
3 Alkmaar 32
4 Feyenoord 28
5 Willem II 27
6 Heerenveen 26
7 Twente 25
8 Utrecht 25
9 Roda 21
10 Roosendaal 21
11 Groningen 20
12 NEC 19
13 NAC 18
14 Waalwijk 17
15 Volendam 13
16 Vitesse 13
17 Den Haag 10
18 Zwolle 7

Winter Review

Ajax and PSV may be duelling for the title, but neither managed a goal in their final matches prior to the shutdown, which runs until 21 January. Moreover, only one Ereviside team remain in Europe, in stark contrast to recent distinguished performances.

Deposed as champions last season by PSV, Ajax currently lead the way. But whereas they began the season at a rate of knots, in the last month they have crashed out of the UEFA Champions League, finishing bottom of their group, departed the Dutch Cup at home to NAC Breda and ended the year with a 2-0 defeat by FC Twente. That followed a run where they had picked up 25 points from nine fixtures, but they are now level with PSV, albeit with a game in hand.

Feyenoord, though, are facing their first finish outside the top three since 1997/98. They lie fourth, four points behind AZ Alkmaar, after a summer overhaul that saw Paul Bosvelt, Pierre van Hooijdonk, Bonaventura Kalou and Brett Emerton depart and Dirk Kuijt, Danko Lazovic, Peter van den Berg, Hossam Ghaly, Jean Carlos Dondé and Alfred Schreuder arrive.

With only two Champions League slots, Feynoord already seem set to have to settle for another UEFA Cup campaign unless they can make up the nine-point gap on the top two. A more realistic challenge could come from Alkmaar, who sit five points off the top and are impressing under former Ajax coach Co Adriaanse. They boast prolific strikers in Ali Elkhattabi and Kenneth Perez, who have scored 12 and eight goals respectively.

Feyenoord could even struggle for a UEFA Cup place as Willem II, SC Heerenveen, FC Utrecht and Twente are all eyeing a top-five finish. It is Twente whom Bert van Maarwijk's men face in the Dutch Cup quarter-finals in February. Holders Utrecht are also still involved, and were drawn at home to second division Heracles Almelo.

Lower down the table, SBV Vitesse's financial troubles are beginning to tell on the pitch, and they face a relegation dogfight with newly promoted FC Volendam, ADO Den Haag and bottom club FC Zwolle.

Source: Uefa.com

 

Trio Returns at HSV

Good news for all HSV fans is the fact that Klaus Toppmöller will more than likely be able to call on the services of the injured trio Björn Schlicke, Bernd Hollerbach and more3 importantly (with all due respect to the afore-mentioned) Bernardo Romeo, for HSV's first match of the second half of the season away to Hanover on Sunday January 31st 2004. The kick-off for that match is at 5.30 pm. Ninth place in the Bundesliga table is a handy place to be at the moment. With the injury list shortening, Toppmöller is constantly being given more options for team selection. Who knows how far HSV can go, especially if the Czech Republic defensive duo of Ujfalusi and Fukal regain fitness in time to make a difference. One thing's for sure, no-one could have predicted the optimism doing the rounds at HSV at the moment.

Sunday, December 28, 2003 

Marcelinho Returns



Beira-mar's player Marcelinho is ready to return to action after a two months injury lay-off. "I do not feel pain anymore and I want to play", said the player to a portuguese newspaper today. Marcelinho has been out of action since suffering a knee injury in the 1-2 Beira-Mar win against Benfica, on 4th November.

Tuesday, December 23, 2003 

Joao Pereira sign new contract valid until 2008



The young Benfica player João Pereira (19 years old), considered as one of the bigguest revelations of the Portuguese Superlegue 2003/04, signed today a new contract that will keep him at the "eagles" side until 2008.

 

Fyssas is Benfica first winter transfer



SL Benfica have agreed to sign Panathinaikos FC left-back Panagiotis Fyssas following the expiry of the Greek international's contract with the Athens club.
The Lisbon club confirmed that Fyssas would be in Portugal by the end of December, ready to sign when the transfer window opens on 1 January. However, he will not be able to take part in Benfica's UEFA Cup campaign, having already played four times in the UEFA Champions League games for Panathinaikos this season.

Coach José António Camacho will hope to field Fyssas in Benfica's 4 January derby against Sporting Clube de Portugal, provided that the club can complete his registration in time. Portuguese law dictates that players must be registered three days before a match. The first working day of 2004 will be Friday 2 January, just two days before the fixture at the new Luz Stadium.

Source: Uefa.com

 

HSV sign Leverkusen's keeper



HSV has completed the signing of a second goalkeeper within as many weeks. After acquiring the services of the current Essen keeper Sascha Kirschstein for next season, the club has announced that the loan deal with Bayer Leverkusen's number two shot-stopper Tom Starke, is now done and dusted. The HSV sport director Dietmar Beiersdorfer completed the deal which is valid for the rest of this season.

Monday, December 22, 2003 

Albacete 1-1 Athletic Bilbau

Athletic and Albacete shared points in an even match, where the victory could have gone both ways, but endend in a fair draw.

During most of the first half, Albacete dominated the match, pushing Athletic back, thanks to the fast game of it's midfield, going in front with a fantastic strike by Aranda, giving Aranzubia no chance. By the end of the first half, Santiago Ezquerro found the back of Almunia's goal, after a cirurgical pass from Ismael Urzaiz. Athletic was starting to turn the match around.

On the second half, with a clear domain of the midfield by the basques, the game was very poorly played, with few opportunities created, giving a calm last 45 minutes for both keepers.

Despite the draw, Athletic saw the difference to the fourth place, occupied by Osasuna, being reduced to 4 points. Next venue will be a Basque derby, between Athletic and Osasuna in the San Mamés.



Albacete: Almunia, Oscar, Pablo, Buades, Peña; Iván Díaz, Viaud (Parri, 55'), Alvaro (David Sánchez, 73'), Delporte; Pacheco y Aranda (Mikel, 82').

Athletic: Aranzubía; César, Luis Prieto, Karanka, Larrazabal; Etxeberría (Arriaga, 86'), Gurpegui, Tiko, Yeste (Jonan García, 62'); Ezquerro (E. Bordas 92') y Urzaiz.

Gols: 1-0 Aranda(13'); 1-1 Ezquerro (40')

 

AC Milan 1-2 Udinese

Milan suffered their first Serie A defeat of the season as they went down 2-1 at home to Udinese. The visitors took a shock lead in only 90 seconds. The Rossoneri, without Shevchenko and Nesta, almost got back into the game on the 18th minute when Inzaghi collided with Udinese goalkeper Morgan De Sanctis and the referee awarded coach Carlo Ancelotti's side their first penalty of the season. However, Andrea Pirlo, as he did against Boca Juniors last week, failed to convert his spot-kick as the ball came back off the post.

Udinese that doubled their advantage soon after the restart of the second-half as Valerio Bertotto's free-kick took the slightest deflection off Nestor Sensini's head to beat Dida. Milan were given hope when Cafu volleyed home at the near post but their cause was not helped with a red card for Kakha Kaladze. The final moments were frantic in front of the Udinese goal but Inzaghi and Jon Dahl Tomasson both had chances blocked.



MILAN: Dida; Cafu, Laursen (46' Costacurta), Maldini, Kaladze, Gattuso, Pirlo (68' Ambrosini), Serginho (61' Borriello); Kaka, Tomasson, Inzaghi.

UDINESE: De Sanctis; Bertotto, Sensini, Kroldrup; Alberto (68' Pierini), Pinzi, Pazienza (79' Gargo), Jankuloski; Jorgensen, Muntari; Fava (75' Jancker).

Goals: 0-1 Fava(2'); 0-2 Sensini (51'); 1-2 Cafu (70')

 

Lyon 1 - 1 PSG

1 - 1

The Paris team got an unlucky draw in Lyon last weekend. The portuguese player Pauleta scored for PSG at the minute 41 and put the home side in complete panic. But the last five minutes become a bad dream for the Paris team when Carriere made the 1-1 that setled the end result.

Even with this draw PSG it´s in the third place, 7 points behind the lider Monaco.



Lyon : Coupet - Berthod, Caçapa (Muller, 90e), Edmilson, Réveillere - Juninho, Malouda (Carrière, 70e), Dhorasso - Govou, Luyindula, Elber. Entr. : Le Guen.

PSG : Alonzo - Cubilier (Mendy, 64e), El Karkouri, Heinze, Pierre-Fanfan, Sorin (Boskovic, 61e) - Hugo Leal, M'Bami, Rocchi (Ogbeche, 74e) - Fiorèse, Pauleta. Entr. : Halilhodzic.

 

Vitesse 0 - PSV 0



PSV have dropped two precious points in their final league game of this year in the Arnhem Gelredome. For over an hour the Eindhoven team attempted in vain to break the deadlock against ten-man Vitesse. Despite that PSV Eindhoven moved level on points with AFC Ajax at the top of the Dutch First Division because the team of amsterdam losed 2-0 agains FC Twente.

 

Estrela da Amadora 0 - Benfica 3



Benfica won 0 - 3 agains Estrela in the first Derby United of the season. Benfica, a title candidate, started the game with a goal by the returned portuguese internacional Nuno Gomes at the 2´. Seven minutes later the young star Tiago shooted for the second goal of the night. In just ten minutes de defence of Estrela (the worst of the portuguese Super League) conceded two goals to the Eagles. Things were hard for Estrela already but they become impossible with the goal by Sokota at the 32´.

In the second half we assisted to a boring game with Benfica clearly happy with the result and Estrela resigned to it. Estrela close the year in the last place of the Portuguese league and Benfica will end the year in 3rd place (3 points behind FC Porto that have a game in hand).

SUPERLIGA [ 15ª JORNADA ]

E. AMADORA
Veiga; Fonseca, Paulo Madeira, Pedro Simões e Rui Neves; Juba, Bernardo e Rui Baião; David, Semedo e Júlio César.

BENFICA
Moreira; Miguel, Luisão, Hélder e Cristiano; João Pereira, Fernando Aguiar, Tiago e Zahovic; Nuno Gomes e Sokota.

Goals: 0:1 Nuno Gomes (2´) 0:2 Tiago (9´) 0:3 Sokota (32´)

 

Beira-Mar 1 - Nacional 0


Beira-Mar held on this Sunday the fourth place in the portuguese Superliga thanks to a 1-0 win against Nacional da Madeira. Juninho Petrolina struck the only goal on the 73th minute, and Beira-Mar goalkeeper, Andy Marriot, made a wonderful save from a Nacional striker almost in the end of the game, and secured tha home team victory. This way, Beira-Mar still is the sensation team of the portuguese Superliga, and keeps trying to finish the season with a ticket to the UEFA cup.

Saturday, December 20, 2003 

River Plate loses to Cienciano in the final



The Peruan Club Cienciano won the South-American Cup, after beating River Plate 1-0, in the second leg (4-3 on aggregate).

The Argentinian team dominated the match, but the strikers were never able to finish the opportunities created by Gallardo and Coudet. Marcelo Salas was substituted with only 16' of game due to an injury. During the first half, the Cienciano keeper was the most intervenient player on the pitch, making a magnificent exhibition, stoping the shots from Lopez, Montenegro and Gallardo. By the end of the first half, the River players started to appear tired, due to the effort of the first half hour, and also due to the high altitude of Arequipa, the location of the venue (2600 mts).

On the second half, the Peruans appeared with a stronger will, motivated by the keeper exhibition and the 3-3 draw in Buenos Aires, on the first leg. With only 6 minutes in the half, Cienciano midfielder La Rosa was sent off, wich wasn't enough for River to re-take control of the game. In one of the only shots at Constanzo's goal, Carlos Lugo scored in a wonderfull free-kick that enchanted a packed stadium, a hoping nation, in what was becoming an historical feat. Finding themselves one goal back, the River players pushed forward but they started playing more with their hearts than with their feat. Cienciano were reduced to nine men with less than ten minutes to play, but it was already too late to make a difference.



Cienciano Club is the first Peruan team to win a club competition in South America.

Cienciano: Oscar Ibáñez; Alessandro Morán, Santiago Acasiete, Carlos Lugo, Giuliano Portilla; Juan Carlos La Rosa, Juan Carlos Bazalar (92' Miguel Llanos), Julio García, Paolo Maldonado (57' César Ccahuantico); Rodrigo Saraz (83' Martín García), Germán Carty.

River Plate: Franco Constanzo; Oscar Ahumada (85' Daniel Ludueña), Horacio Ameli, Eduardo Tuzzio, Ricardo Rojas; Javier Mascherano, Eduardo Coudet, Luis González (76' Alejandro Domínguez), Marcelo Gallardo; Maximiliano López, Marcelo Salas (16' Daniel Montenegro).

Gols:77' Carlos Lugo

Friday, December 19, 2003 

Milan on the quarter-finals of the Italian Cup



Milan beat Sampdoria 1-0 (2-0 on aggregate), breaking the deadlock in the 13th minute at the San Siro when Filippo Inzaghi scuffed a Kakha Kaladze cross across the line, making his 50th goal for AC Milan. Sampdoria pressed forward in the second half, but repeatedly ran into a wall of red-and-black shirts, coming closest to scoring a minute from the end when reserve goalkeeper Valerio Fiori palmed Corrado Colombo's header round the post.

Milan will face Juventus in the quarter-finals of the Italian Cup.


MILAN: Abbiati (34’ Fiori); Simic, Laursen, Costacurta, Kaladze; Brocchi; Redondo, Seedorf, Serginho, Rui Costa (58' Kaka); Inzaghi (67' Borriello).

SAMPDORIA: Turci; Sacchetti, Grandoni, Carrozzieri, Zivkovic; Antonimi (70’ Doni), Volpi, Donati (46' Job), Zenoni (58' Pedone); Colombo, Yanagisawa.

GOALSCORERS: 13' Inzaghi

Thursday, December 18, 2003 

Copa Libertadores 2004 Group Stage Draw


36 teams will fight to succeed Boca Juniors

Yeasterday took place the draw for the group stage of the 2004 Copa de Libertadores, and River Plate knows some of its opponents. Los Milionarios will play Libertad, of Paraguay, Deportivo Táchira, of Venezuela, and then second representant of Colombia (yet to be defined*), in group 6, for a place in the first knock-out round.

The first stage is composed of 9 groups of 4 teams each. The winners of each group and the best 5 second placed qualify for the next stage. The ohter 4 second placed will play a one knock-out game, to define the last two in the 1/8 finals.

The competition will start in February.


*The second representant from Colombia will be decided on Sunday, after the Colombian Championship Final between Deportivo Cali and Tolima.

 

Bundesliga Standings and Overlook - Winter Brake



German Bundesliga - 17 match day - Winter Brake

Pos Team Points

1 Werder Bremen 39

2 Bayern Munchen 35

3 Bayer Leverkusen 35

4 VfB Stuttgart 35

5 VfL Bochum 26

6 Borussia Dortmund 25

7 VfL Wolfsburg 25

8 FC Schalke 04 24

9 Hamburger SV 23

10 SC Freiburg 21

11 Hannover 96 20

12 Hansa Rostock 19

13 Bor. M gladbach 19

14 1860 Munchen 19

15 1. FC Kaiserslautern 15

16 1. FC Koln 13

17 Hertha BSC 13

18 Eintracht Frankfurt 12

Summarizing Bundesliga: Bundesliga it´s now in the winter brake and Bremen is the winter champion leading with 39 points, more four then the second. Bundesliga 2003/04 is clearly much more competitive than the last season when Bayer Munchen dominated the whole season.
Now there are 4 teams fighting for the title with half of the season already played. Bremen is the outsider, Bayer Munchen is the champion and Stuttgard is confirming the last season good performance, with Leverkusen back to the top after the 15th place in 2002/03.

From this four teams the Munchen team seems to have the stronguest arguments but attention to Leverkusen and to the sensational Bremen. Losing the last two games and with not so good solutions in the bench Stuttgard seems to be the least favourite to win the title of the first four. But attention must be given to B. Dortmund. They are 14 points behind but we cannot forget that the Dortmund team played the first half of the league with half of the players injured. So we never know.

Fighting for an european place (the first 5 positions) Dortmund, Wolfsburg, Shalke and Hamburger SV are the big contests with the Hamburg team showing a wonderfull recuperation in the last 5 matches. Bochum seems to be the team with less arguments.

In the bottom of the table we find teams that we would expect to find at least in the first ten. Heartha Berlin and Kaiserlautern will fight hard not to finish in the second league.

On the 31st of January the competition will restart and then answers will start to be given...

 

Academica 0 - 1 Benfica



Benfica moved into the 6th round of the Portuguese Cup (1/8 finals) with an away win against Academica. A head goal by Luisão (that returned to the first team after an injury that took him away from the fields for almost 3 months) at the minute 22 was enough to put Benfica in the next round. But the result doesn't reflect the "eagles" superiority. Simão failed at least two easy goals and the returned Nuno Gomes also. Academica only created danger in a free kick that Bossio managed to defend in the middle of the second half.
Just a note to the unfair red card gived to Simão already in the overtime that will put him away of the next Super League game on sunday against Estrela Amadora.

ACADÉMICA - Fouhami, Nuno Luís, Tonel, Zé António, Fredy, Zuela, Dionattan, Jorginho, Buszaky, Fábio Felício e Marcelo.
Treinador: Vítor Oliveira.
Suplentes: Pedro Roma, Fiston, Rodolfo, Delmer, Rocha, Marinescu e Dyduch.

BENFICA - Bossio; Miguel, Luisão, Argel, Cristiano; Fernando Aguiar, Simão, Tiago, Andersson, Roger; Sokota.
Treinador: José Antonio Camacho.
Suplentes: Moreira, Alex, Nuno Gomes, Fehér, Hélder, Hélio Pinto e João Pereira.

Goals: 0:1 Luisão (22)

Wednesday, December 17, 2003 

Beira-Mar Out

Rio Ave moved into the 6th roud of the Portuguese Cup with a narrow 1-0 win against Beira-Mar. Jacques scored 3 minutes before the half-time . Beira-Mar didn't play well in the first half. Then, in the second half, the visitors had a great chance to draw but Rui Dolores failed to beat the keeper Candeias.

 

Rivaldo might join Benfica in January



According to the brazilian journal "Gazeta Esportiva" Benfica is interested in Rivaldo. They mention an interview made today by the portuguese journal "A Bola" to Rivaldo where the player said that it would be an honour to join the "Eagles" in January.

Rivaldo is a free player after leaving AC Milan this month. Beside Benfica Chelsea, Liverpool and São Paulo are also in the run for the brazilian internacional. Next week the player will anounce his future. Until then Benfica fans can dream with a nice Christmas present.

 

Pellegrini to leave River after Cup Final



It is almost certain that the River Plate coach, Manuel Pellegrini, will leave the club after the second leg match of the South American Cup Final, on friday. The most probable successor will be Leonardo Astrada, former River Plate star midfielder, although Daniel Passarela is a name that as not yet been set aside.

River Plate will play for the South American Cup in Peru, against Cienciano. The first leg match, in Buenos Aires, ended in a 3-3 draw.

 

PSV reach quarter finals Cup



PSV 2 - 0 Willem II

By two first half goals, both scored by Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink, who was an exemplary new captain tonight, PSV coasted to a comfortable 2-0 win over Willem II and reached the Amstel Cup quarter finals in a rather unexciting game.

Goals: 1:0 Vennegoor of Hesselink (19), 2:0 Vennegoor of Hesselink (30)

 

Eintracht Frankfurt 2 - 3 HSV



Hamburg managed another glorious night after the 4 -1 victory agains Freiburg on last weekend. Last night in Frankfurt the team from the German Veneza was clear a giant.

On 17 minutes HSV were ahead, as Frankfurt's Albanian Skela headed the ball to the feet of Stefan Beinlich, who placed a shot from 28 yards out just inside the post to give the visitors the lead. The second HSV goal just arrived on the second half. Barbarez crossed into the box following a corner, Takahara was not marked closely enough and had no trouble making it 2-0 with a close range header on 52 minutes. One minute later Frankfurt managed to score and they equalized at 66´.
But Five minutes from time, Beinlich set Barbarez up inside the Frankfurt box with a fabulous overhead kick. The Bosnian goal-getter didn't need to be asked twice, as he gleefully slotted home from close range to give HSV what all present thought was the late winner. This game however, had another final twist in its tail, as the referee gave a dubious penalty in the 88th minute, as Reinhardt was adjudged to have fouled Frommer in the box. Up stepped Skela who struck the ball to Wächter's left. The HSV keeper who has been in fine form since replacing the injured Martin Pieckenhagen, produced a fine save to keep the ball out, and in doing so, ensure that HSV have a happy Christmas which no-one would have deemed to be possible just seven games ago.

So HSV are now ninth in the Bundesliga table, and deservedly so. After a horryble start of the season nobody would expect to see Hamburg going to the Winter brake with only two points less than the 5th place (that gives access to the UEFA Cup). So we must take the hat off to Klaus Toppmöller and his battlers, who proved yet again that they have a champions spirit with now 5 match unbeaten run.

Eintracht Frankfurt: Nikolov - Preuß, Bindewald, Puljiz, Cipi - Chris, Schur, Skela, Bürger - Cha, Beierle - Trainer: Reimann

HSV: Wächter - Wicky, Hoogma, Reinhardt - Mahdavikia, Jarolim, Maltritz, Beinlich, Kling - Takahara, Barbarez - Trainer: Toppmöller

Goals: 0:1 Beinlich (17), 0:2 Takahara, 1:2 Skela (53), 2:2 Beierle (66.), 2:3 Barbarez (85).

 

DYNAMO president talks about future plans

The president of FC Dynamo Kyiv Igor Surkis in a yesterday's interview to "Our football" TV program shared his vision for the future strategy of the club. The key dilemma over the winter break will be strengthening the team with new players vs betting on the professional growth of the ones already in the team. As Mr. Surkis said, he'd prefer to see the local players to get more play and growth. He mentioned that Argentinian Roberto Nanni who's still recovering after the surgery will definitely play a major role in the team in the future. Mr. Surkis expects such players as Gusev, Milevsky and Yussuf to appear much more frequently in the main squad next year.

Also, the president of the club compared the 100m euro annual budget of FC "Internazionale" to $30m budget of Dynamo in explaining why does his club not purchase the top stars.

The goals for the new season are standard - winning the national championship and the Cup, and advancing to the Champions League group stage. Mr. Surkis is confident that should the quality of the game played by Dynamo be at least the same if not higher next year, there will be more significant achievements in Europe. Among the critical problems of the club he mentioned inability to maintain concentration in the very end of the games (as suggested by three last-minute losses in this year's Champions league) and admitting about 90% of all goals from standard situations (corners, free shots, penalties).

From the author: Summarizing Dynamo's European campaign it is hard to disagree that the team's play was impressive. Building on the traditional counter-attacking style, the team employed much higher tempo and showed excellent mobility. Ukrainian fans and commentators generally agree that it is Shatskikh inability to convert numerous chances, which prevented Dynamo from materializing the play into the result. All of this year's games demonstrated the team was in the amazing physical condition dominating the game at will despite the name of the opponent. Should Alexei Mikhailichenko, Dynamo coach, get the pair of forwards able to convert their chances, the future will look much brighter for the Ukrainian team.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003 

On the road to Portugal



The Greek National Team have scheduled 3 friendly matches to prepare the EURO 2004.

Friendly Matches Calendar

18/02 - Greece x Bulgaria
31/03 - Greece x Switzerland
28/04 - Holland x Greece

 

Beira-Mar Without Juninho


Juninho Petrolina will not play tomorrow against Rio Ave, in the 5th round of the portuguese Cup, cause he saw the fifth yellow card in the last journey against Porto. Alcaraz, Zeman and Marcelinho, all injured, will not also be able to play. Probably Filipe, Saul and Osório will be the players called to replace them.
It is going to be a hard game for sure, as Beira-Mar will try hard to win again this competition, after the last victory in 1999

 

Rocha out Nuno Gomes in



Ricardo Rocha has been ruled out until 2004 after surgery on his nose today. But not everything is bad news to Benfica. The striker Nuno Gomes is back to the fields and will play tomorrow in the Portuguese Cup match against Academica.

 

Nesta ruled out for one month



AC Milan defender Alessandro Nesta has been ruled out for up to a month after surgery on his knee today.

The player's recovery will occur mostly during the Serie A winter break, but Milan will not be abtle to line up with Nesta in the match against AS Roma, the current league leaders, on January 6.

It is expected that Nesta returns full-fitted in time for the first leg of the first knock-out round of the Champions League, against Sparta Praha, on February 24.

 

On the Road to Portugal



The Dutch National Team will play 5 friendly matches before the EURO 2004 where they will face Germany, Czech Republic and Latvia.

Friendly Matches Calendar

18/02 – USA
31/03 – France
28/04 – Greece
29/05 – Belgium
05/06 – South Africa

 

Following AC Milan and Atlethic Bilbau



Two more european national leagues will have representants in Football United.

From now on, the FU team will follow the carreer of the Italian giants and European Champions AC Milan, and the traditional Basque-only team of Atlethic Bilbau.



FU Team

Monday, December 15, 2003 

Following FC Porto



From now on our special reporter Pedro Castro will follow all the steps of the 2002/03 UEFA Cup winner, and current Portuguese Champion: FC Porto.

FC Porto it´s currently in the first place of the Portuguese Super League and it´s in the 1/8 finals of the Champions League were it will play agains Manchester United. Don't miss all the latest news right here in Football United.

FU Team

 

Following Swiss National Team and FC Basel



From now on Football United will follow the life of the Swiss National Team in the preparation for the EURO 2004 and then during the competition. Our special swiss reporter Andrés Lanz will bring us all the news. But that´s not all!!! The Swiss League will also be represented by it´s new giant team FC Basel. The sensation of the last year Champions League and currently swiss league leaders will now be followed by FU team.

The links to the official web sites of the club and national team can be found in the right corner.

FU Team

 

League Standings



Portuguese SuperLiga

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1 Porto 14 36
2 Sporting 14 31
3 Benfica 14 30
4 Beira-Mar 14 26
5 Braga 14 24
.
18 Estrela da Amadora 14 7



Dutch First Division

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1 Ajax 14 37
2 PSV 15 36
3 Alkmaar 16 32
4 Feyenoord 15 27
5 Willem II 15 24



German Bundesliga

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1 Bremen 16 36
2 Stuttgart 16 35
3 Leverkusen 16 32
4 Bayern 16 32
5 Bochum 16 25
.
10 Hamburg 16 20



French Ligue 1

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1 Monaco 17 42
2 Lyon 17 34
3 PSG 18 34
4 Sochaux 17 33
5 Auxerre 18 32



Ukrainian Premier League

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1 Shakhtar 15 39
2 Dynamo Kyiv 15 36
3 Dnipro 15 30
4 Metalurh 15 26
5 Chornomorets 15 23



First Division Apertura

Pos. Team Pld Pts
1. Boca Juniors 19 39*
2. San Lorenzo 19 36
3. Banfield 19 32
4. Quilmes 19 31
5. Rosário Central 19 31
.
17. River Plate 17 20

*Apertura Champions

 

Beira-Mar Defeated 3-0 by a Very Strong Porto


FC Porto has been to strong, today, for the actual sensation team of the portuguese first league (Superliga), and continues to set the pace. With bad luck, Wijnhard, opened the scoring making an own goal in the 10th minute. Then Benni McCarthy and Maniche added two further goals in 3 second-half minutes, (75th and 78th). Beira-Mar is still in the 4th place of the league, because Braga miss their chance of getting the place after been defeated 2-0 by Benfica.

Sunday, December 14, 2003 

FRANCE vs UKRAINE friendly: June 6, 2004

It has been confirmed that France will play Ukraine in a friendly game on June 6, 2004. Ending up in one of the most difficult groups, where at least four teams have potential to qualify for the World Cup 2006 (Denmark, Turkey, Greece and Ukraine) Ukrainian team headed now by Oleg Blokhin, needs much practice with elite teams to be well set for the qualification round. In a recent interview on the 1st Ukrainian channel Mr. Blokhin suggested that the national team should play friendly as often as possible, perhaps every month.

 

Following Beira Mar (Portugal), Dinamo Kiev, Shakhtar and the Ucranian National Team



The sensation team of the Portuguese Super league will now be followed by our reporter Ivar. Beira-Mar, the team from the city of Aveiro, is making sensation in Portugal playing good football and currently in the 4th place in the league.
Tonight they will play against the league leaders, FC Porto, so stay tunned in FU for the latest news.

But that´s not all!!! The FU team is now well represented in the east of Europe. Our special reporter Andriy Mykytiv will follow all the steps of powerfull Dinamo Kiev, the Ucranian sensation Shakhtar and the Ucranian National Team in the road to World Cup 2006 on Germany.

The Links to the official web sites can be found on the right corner. Just click in the symbols.

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