The End of Act One…

co_1743[1] Act One of the new season in Spain is over and Sophie and Ben return to dissect the action so far, as Barcelona begin with a perfect record under ‘Tata’ Martino.

Atlético are hot on their heels with eight wins of their own and Real Madrid follow five points behind – albeit with some teething problems in their post-Mourinho project.

We take a look at how Barça have coped without Messi, how Madrid can improve in the lead-up to the Clásico, the difficult start to life in La Liga for Gareth Bale, plus Atlético and how the third team in Spain are looking to challenge under Diego Simeone.

The One After the Summer…

gareth-bale-real-madrid_4[1] The summer has gone and with it the transfer window is now a thing of the past too – at least until January.

Gareth Bale is finally a Real Madrid player, La Liga is underway again and Barcelona have a new coach – although not the centre-back they so badly needed. Sophie and Ben return to discuss all of that and more on the latest La Liga Lounge.

The One After the Summer. Tune in and join us as we catch up on all the stories.
We’re back in the Lounge for our laid-back look at the game in Spain…

Soccerdiva Soundbite…Arsenal’s First Game…

Arsenal-v-Aston-Villa-Premier-League-2179159 A sad start to the new football season for Arsenal Football Club.

How the mighty have fallen. How the once great club has regressed. Eight years going on nine without a trophy. Losing to Aston Villa at home on the opening day of the season. That hasn’t happened in 20 years.

No transfers. No fresh blood. Just the same old story for Arsenal fans to eat. Well the Gooner nation is full from the club’s nonsense. They won’t be fed the PR lines for one more game. They don’t want to hear the lies any longer. They don’t want to be shined.

Verbal Memo | The Bite, the Bale & the Special One…

1931Dracula There’s no biting in football…unless you are Luis Suarez of course! Liverpool’s star player is in hot water once again and the biggest question is what will this legendary and historical club do with him?

Unless you’ve been living under a gigantic rock, Suarez took a healthy bite out of Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic during a game at Anfield over the weekend. It’s not the first time Suarez has done this to an opponent. In April 2011 while playing for Ajax, he sunk his teeth into PSV Eindhoven midfielder Otman Bakkal. He received a seven-match ban and it was the last time he ever played for Ajax, a club with as much rich football history as Liverpool. This is unacceptable behaviour from a player who doesn’t even need to act like Mike Tyson on the football pitch.

Verbal Memo | Manchester City’s Gift For United…

Manchester City’s attempt at defending their title has been nothing short of pathetic.

The players have played with apathy and haven’t been consistent enough. In fact, it seems as though winning the title last season was proof enough in their eyes that they’d arrived as one of the big boys in England, and Europe! The bottom line is something just hasn’t been right this season.

From the distractions of Mario Balotelli and Roberto Mancini’s tactical tinkering early on in the season, to missing out on signing Robin van Persie and stinking up the Champions League, the blue side of Manchester has stuttered and faltered with a lack of identity and a shortage of passion.

Verbal Memo | Battle for 3rd & 4th…

The fight for the Premier League title is over. Anything can happen between now and the end of the season, but the chances Manchester United fold like cheap lawn chairs and concede the title to Manchester City once again are slim.

Robin van Persie is the gift from Arsenal that keeps on giving. The Dutch dynamo is in emphatic form and an absolute goal machine scoring nineteen in the league alone. His transfer from the Emirates to the Theater of Dreams could decide which team is crowned champions of England. And it’s looking more like the Red Devils with every football weekend that passes.

A Conversation With…Bobby McMahon

The Premier League is only days away and boy do I have a treat for all of you.

In A Conversation With Bobby McMahon from Fox Soccer Report and Forbes.com we break the game down to its core and talk tactics. From Arsenal, Tottenham, Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea, Liverpool and Newcastle, Bobby shares his brilliant football brain with you.

We also chat about the managerial changes and who Bobby thinks will be in trouble. Plus don’t miss Bobby’s Top 4 predictions as you might be surprised who he has missing from his list. He also shares who he thinks will sink to the Championship at the end of the season.

A Conversation With…Derek Rae

A Conversation With Derek Rae is pure football poetry. One of football’s finest voices, Derek always paints a beautiful picture through his commentary. Do you know anyone who can marry the famous poet Robert Burns with football?

From Team GB and the Olympics to all things Premier League including Luis Suarez, John Terry, Robin van Persie, Andre Villas Boas, Brendan Rodgers, Manchester City, mid-level clubs and beyond, Derek discusses it all with an honest perspective. There’s even time to talk a wee bit of Rangers!

Football, soccer, call it what you want, it’s just like being down the pub with your mates.

A Conversation With…Andre Villas Boas

There’s no doubt Brendan Rodgers will be under intense scrutiny and pressure when the new season starts. Taking over the managerial reigns at Liverpool and following in the footsteps of legend Kenny Dalglish will definitely be a tough task for the ex-Swansea coach.

However, if there is one man who easily wins the gold medal for “Manager Under the Most Pressure” it has to be Andre Villas Boas. Will we see the man who dazzled the football universe at Porto? Or will we see the AVB who failed miserably at Chelsea? As mentioned earlier this month on this site, I don’t believe lightning will strike twice for Villas Boas, who lived in the shadow of the Special One during his time at Stamford Bridge.

Sleeping with the enemy…not…

What can I say? I’ve been missing in action. I’ve been bad. I’ve had no desire. Just like my beloved team. It’s their fault. They did this to me. This season, they’ve already had me floating towards heaven and then they abruptly drag me into the depth’s of hell. It’s senseless. It’s hurtful. And shameful.

I haven’t even been able to face the blog. I mean it’s not like I write ground-breaking articles. They are merely my football thoughts that hopefully turn into conversations between fellow football fans. It’s just like being down the pub with your mates. But let’s face it. There are times when you don’t fancy going down the pub. Especially when your team recently lost its balls to the enemy.