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2019-20 English Premiere League Thread

jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
Villa pulled a 2-1 win out of their butts against Watford yesterday. Mings with a set piece goal in stoppage time. That pretty much flip-flopped the two, sliding Watford into the drop zone and Villa out of it. They went with three wingers up front, which won't work in the long run. With Kodja sold off, that new signing Samatta, the perpetually injured (or disappointing) Davis and the Bulgarian/American kid Vassilev are the only available forwards. That's a rough looking bunch, but hey ... probably still a better bunch than when they got the bounce in 2016.
 

jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
Villa improbably have landed in the Carabao Cup Final by cleaning up the 2nd leg against Leicester with a 2-1 win ... probably facing Man City again. City have a 3-1 lead in aggregate ahead of their second leg with United today. Ugh. Still ... a Cup Final is a Cup Final. Up the Villa
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
Villa improbably have landed in the Carabao Cup Final by cleaning up the 2nd leg against Leicester with a 2-1 win ... probably facing Man City again. City have a 3-1 lead in aggregate ahead of their second leg with United today. Ugh. Still ... a Cup Final is a Cup Final. Up the Villa
Man U pulled one back but lost 3-2 on aggregate. In the not too distant past, getting to the Cup final would have put them in the Europa League, since City will qualify for Europe in another way. If Villa do win, they go into the Europa League 2nd qualifying round.

In the League, Liverpool won their match against West Ham that was postponed for their participation in the Club World Cup. With their win, they’re 19 points clear of Man City with 70 points in 24 matches.

In January transfer news, Spurs finally sold off Christian Eriksen, to Inter for £17 million. They also sent Danny Rose to Newcastle on loan until the end of the season, sent Giovani Lo Celso to Real Betis for £27 million and brought in forward Steven Bergwijn from PSV for £29 million and midfielder Gedson Fernandes from Benfica on an 18 month loan with an option to buy for £55 million. Man U sent captain Ashley Young to Inter for £1 million. He was on an expiring contract. AC Milan played backup keeper shuffle with clubs in England, sending Pepe Reina to Villa and bringing in Asmir Begovic from Bournemouth, both loan deals. Chelsea sent Victor Moses to Inter on loan. Arsenal sign center back Pablo Mori on loan from Flamengo. He was under contract at Man City from 2016-19, so Arteta knows him from there. They had sent him out to Girona, NAC and Deportivo La Coruña on loan.
 

jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
Man U pulled one back but lost 3-2 on aggregate. In the not too distant past, getting to the Cup final would have put them in the Europa League, since City will qualify for Europe in another way. If Villa do win, they go into the Europa League 2nd qualifying round.
Look ... hardware is always good, but if Villa somehow move heaven and earth and win that thing against City, which is such a long shot I had trouble actually typing it, then they should be given a free pass by fans and press to field a freaking youth squad in Europa League qualifying. Unless they get relegated of course, in which case it would be the only thing that matters.

Completely moot because City will pick their scoreline.
 

HNIM

Well-known member
Two weeks away from restart, unless whole teams come down with covid. How many matches will you watch the first weekend?
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
Two weeks away from restart, unless whole teams come down with covid. How many matches will you watch the first weekend?
As many as I can. I’ll probably have Wednesday’s And Friday’s matches on my iPad while I’m pretending to work. I’ll be visiting friends over the weekend, so probably only the 7:30 match. The best part of the restart is that NBC has most of the matches on TV; only 1 match is behind the paywall on Matchday 30.

 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
A potential big headache for the league is coming to a head.

Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund is attempting to buy Newcastle United. The fund is chaired by crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, which brings problems of its own. The bigger issue is that Saudi Arabia actively pirates Premier League matches from beIN Sports, based in Qatar. BeIN has the broadcast rights for the Middle East and North Africa. However, since Saudi Arabia and others broke diplomatic ties with Qatar in 2017, beIN hasn’t been available in the country. The government is pirating the feed and broadcasting them via beoutQ, a streaming service that requires a set top box. To complicate matters, a WTO decision against Saudi Arabia for piracy is expected the day before the league re-starts. Coincidentally, Newcastle will be playing Sheffield United, which is also owned by a Saudi prince, although much lower profile than MBS.

If you subscribe to The Athletic, they had an article about it today.

 

HNIM

Well-known member
DeBruyne looks friskier than I've seen him in quite a while. Getting fully healed and rested has certainly done him a lot of good.
 
Didn't watch the match, but did see the clip of Villa getting away with giving up a clear goal and the goal line technology clearly messing up and not giving it. I also am totally okay with it as A) Villa overall have been on the wrong end of more bad decisions by far this season and B) I am incapable of being unbiased on all things Villa. The good part of the layoff is that McGinn is back on the squad and hopefully he can get back into form as he was a real key to the early play that made it look like Villa was all but guaranteed to be safely mid table. This year is absolute trash on a stick and I know it's not anywhere close to the top ten biggest issues going on right now, but please just let Villa stay up so that even though I live in the worst flaming tire fire of a country on earth I can at least say, well at least Villa are still in the Prem.
 

jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
Didn't watch the match, but did see the clip of Villa getting away with giving up a clear goal and the goal line technology clearly messing up and not giving it. I also am totally okay with it as A) Villa overall have been on the wrong end of more bad decisions by far this season and B) I am incapable of being unbiased on all things Villa. The good part of the layoff is that McGinn is back on the squad and hopefully he can get back into form as he was a real key to the early play that made it look like Villa was all but guaranteed to be safely mid table. This year is absolute trash on a stick and I know it's not anywhere close to the top ten biggest issues going on right now, but please just let Villa stay up so that even though I live in the worst flaming tire fire of a country on earth I can at least say, well at least Villa are still in the Prem.
Villa looked halfway decent in the second half, but without a quality striker up front the offense just isn't there. Davis works hard but just doesn't have the quality. Wesley wasn't really doing much but at least he had some quality on the ball ... but once he went out it's been down to Grealish pulling stuff out of his backside or nothing. It's going to end up costing them, I fear.
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
Norwich are down, the first club to be relegated 5 times. Michail Antonio scored all 4 goals as West Ham took them out 4-0. Watford picked up a massive 3 points against Newcastle, opening up a 6 point gap with 18th place Bournemouth and 7 over 19th place Villa.
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
So West Ham’s win yesterday proves to be less significant than 24 hours ago. Aston Villa, Watford and Bournemouth all grabbed all 3 points so, aside from Norwich going down, the bottom 5 are still the bottom 5. Bournemouth go to Man City on Wednesday. Villa are at reeling Everton and Brighton are at Southampton on Thursday. Then a de facto relegation derby on Friday with Watford at West Ham.
 
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HNIM

Well-known member
A winner of West Ham-Watford will almost certainly be through. A draw, though, could be the setup to see both of them through - or both of them sent down. There's just enough in the remaining fixtures for Villa, Bournemouth, and BHA to see any or all of them surviving. Both Everton, who look to be mailing it in at this point, and Arsenal, who have the ever reliable David Luiz at the back, will have at lot to say about it.
 

HNIM

Well-known member
And Man City had their CL suspension lifted, because of course they did. So the race for European places is a bit less interesting.
 

jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
And Man City had their CL suspension lifted, because of course they did. So the race for European places is a bit less interesting.
I mean ... it cost them a fine of 30 million Euro, which is less than they've spent on any single senior club player since the Saudis took over. FFP is a freaking joke.
 

jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
Back to Villa ... which is all I really care about at this point. With their tradition of getting killed by late in the season by Arsenal, their only hopes are a win over semi train wreck Everton and a win over fellow relegationalists West Ham. Prior to the clean sheet against Palace, I would have placed their chances at roughly zero percent and I still don't think they're good. All three teams are legit better than them, after all. Bottom line ... they've been a disorganized mess in the back all year, suck out loud on set pieces and don't have much of an offense. They've earned this relegation. Anything else would be early Christmas.
 
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