The One With the Quarter Finals…

La Liga Lounge returns with a Champions League special after this week’s first leg matches in the quarter-finals.

As the competition reaches its business end, Sophie and Ben discuss Barcelona’s depleted defence (who will partner Piqué?), Messi’s mini-absence, disagree on Víctor Valdés and question whether the Catalans have a mental issue late in games.

The Lounge bar staff also talk Madrid and how it’s all coming together for Mourinho, Casillas vs Diego López, the strikers and how this could be their year. We also chat Cristiano Ronaldo, look at his amazing stats and those of Messi, remember Ronaldinho, weigh up Neymar and big up Málaga, probably the story of this Champions League campaign. Will we see them back next year?

I’m going home, to the place where I belong…

spainfashionparadeok2So Xabi Alonso finally joined Real Madrid for a reported 30 million pounds. The midfield maestro leaves Liverpool after 5 years of quality service. I’m sure the fans are sad today as they loved watching Alonso play alongside Gerrard, Mascherano and his fellow countrymen, Torres. And if the fans are looking for someone to blame for Alonso leaving, they should look no further than their coach Rafa Benitez. After the debacle that was trying to sign Gareth Barry last season, Alonso felt a little insulted and wanted out of Liverpool from then. Well done Rafa!

Future Divo…

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Jack Wilshere has been dubbed the most exciting prospect in English football and he absolutely deserves the tag. There’s a fearlessness to Wilshere that is undeniable and there’s no doubt he’s a breathtaking player to watch.

Wilshere has had an incredible pre-season with Arsenal and was without question the star at the Emirates Cup. He showed a maturity and intelligence for the game that we haven’t seen in a few of Arsene Wenger’s youngsters. Wilshere reminds people of former Arsenal legend Liam Brady and if you’re a Gooner, this can only be hopeful news in an off-season where not much has happened in the transfer market. He also has a little Gazza in him when he has the ball at his feet and he’s running at players. Wilshere truly is a delicious footballer.

Transfer news in a nutshell…

nutshell400There are some crazy transfer stories out there right now. It’s been an interesting summer so far and there’s still time for a few more headlines to be written…

John Terry moving to Manchester City from Chelsea? I’ll believe that when I see it. And Cesc Fabregas is being hunted like a wolf again by Barcelona. Don’t think that will happen this season, but it could definitely happen next! Here is some solid transfer news…