As promised, and with the blessings of resident Everton fan the Ginge, here is the first of many posts to keep you updated on the lesser leagues of Europe. I've seen the "football" they play, and let me tell you something.... the Amsterdam Admirals are terrible.
Many of you were both tired and excited this weekend. I know this. How do I know this?
Because I stalk you all. Because the English Premier League kicked off and you got up at 7am to watch! That's the big news from the weekend, but England joins a busy August that already has the French and Dutch leagues in full swing. Join me after the jump to escape a frustrating Dynamo season for two minutes as we take an abridge look at the weekends happenings.
ENGLAND: Hooray! The EPL is back! And like a delicious cupcake all for me, the first game is my beloved Tottenham taking on bitter 4th place rivals Manchester Al-City! An otherwise glorious way to kick off the season was subsequently ruined by Joe Hart in a rather brilliant display of goalkeeping. There's hope for the England team yet! Tottenham 0 - Man Citeh 0
The rest of the league was put on notice by CSKA London. Newly promoted whipping-boys West Brom Albion were ruthlessly demolished in a vintage "Chelsea-pummels-crappy-team-at-the-Bridge" display. That morose game was quickly erased on Sunday as Arsenal and Liverpool clashed in an opening-weekend Big 4 match-up. Unsurprisingly, Arsenal tried to pass their way into goal and Almunia tended net like a headless chicken on speed. Surprisingly, Pepe Reina bundled a rebound off the post into his own net, depriving a rather game 10-man Liverpool of two points. Chelsea 6 - WBA 0 | Liverpool 1 - Arsenal 1
Similar goalkeeping woes bewitched Our Man Timmy (sorry Ginge), while elsewhere American's Clint Dempsey and SUPER STEWART HOLDEN squared off in a rather dour draw. Manchester United wrapped up the weekend on Retro Night at Old Trafford with a shellacking of NewcastLOL led by the ageless Scholes and Giggs. Blackburn 1 - Everton 0 | Bolton 0 - Fulham 0 | Manchester United 3 - Newcastle 0
The rest: Aston Villa 3 - West Ham 0 | Sunderland 2 - Birmingham 2 | Wigan 0 - Blackpool 4 | Wolves 2 - Stoke 1
SPAIN / ITALY: It's august. They're all on Holiday in Croatia.
FRANCE / HOLLAND / GERMANY: The French have apparently mixed up the rugby and soccer standings, because Toulouse bewilderingly top the early table. Recent league victors Marseille, Bordeaux, and Lyon all find themselves toward the bottom of the standings. Heading northeast and skipping Belgium, we find the Eredivisie also two weeks old. The usual assortment of 5-3 defensive gems have put PSV Eindhoven in a familiar position atop table, with arch-rivals Ajax not far behind in third. The Germans are busy fine tuning the perfectly engineered group of Überplayers that will marsch them to Euro 2012 victory, and are distracting themselves with Cup play. The league comes back next week.
Financial considerations may actually spare us from the annual pillaging of top talent out of these leagues, which hopefully keeps things lively throughout the season. If we're being honest, the French and German leagues have produced some of the most enjoyable games and exciting title races the past few years. I highly encourage anyone who just enjoys good football to give one of these three leagues a watch this season.
WEEKDAY FUN: I am absolutely going to short-change everyone on this bit because there is one - and ONLY one - important match this coming week. Tottenham Hotspur begins their Champions League campaign Tuesday with a trip to Switzerland to
conquer see play with compete in a competitive game of football with Young Boys. Leave your most snicker worthy Wednesday Headline in the comments below!
(picture via nationallampoon.com)