Zarate Joins Inter

Inter’s Twitter revealed to me the signing if one Zarate, a wide forward.

I know nothing of this Zarate. I recall not his name from the 2010 World Cup, and I did not see from whence he came, although I did not look with intent. Apparently he is to complement Forlan with the new system of play. We shall see when the season starts soon!

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Meireles Now a Chelsea Midfielder

If you have been following Chelsea Offside, you know that Raul Meireles, who beat us earlier in this calendar year in our match against Liverpool, has joined the Blues in a last minute signing before the transfer window closed.

Check out Chelsea’s official statement about this transfer.

I don’t know if this transfer was to our advantage. What’s the difference between Meireles and Mikel? Well, the difference was he scored a game winning goal against us last season, whereas Mikel doesn’t score.

Inter Milan agrees Forlan deal – Serie A News | FOX Sports on MSN

Inter Milan agrees Forlan deal – Serie A News | FOX Sports on MSN.

Eto’o was invaluable to Inter. He was our go-to goal provider either by scoring or by assisting quite frequently. Yet, he is gone.

Inter has secured Diego Forlan, the 2010 World Cup Golden Ball or best player winner, to replace Eto’o. Forlan is transferring from Atletico Madrid to Inter Milan, the full details of which have not yet been reported.

Actually, this situation may not be so dire. What I want to know is how well will Forlan fit into Inter and play in Serie A? Time will tell, but he did have success against Inter with Atletico Madrid in the 2010 UEFA Supercup.

Real Madrid 6-0 Real Zaragoza

La Liga started a week late due to the strike. Real Madrid seemingly could not wait for the league to start as they scored 6 goals in their first game of the season against Real Zaragoza. Ronaldo scored 3 of his own while Marcelo, Alonso, and Kaka each found the net once. Los Blancos looked good offensively as well as defensively. Casillas kept a clean sheet, but he wasn’t tested much. The commentator for the game on GolTV mentioned on several occasions that Real Madrid will win the league this year, even over Barcelona whom they failed to beat in the Supercup. I definitely think it is possible. Get your stats on the game from LiveSoccer TV.

What a way for Ronaldo to start off La Liga 2011-2012 with a hat trick!

Several opportunities were not converted by Özil, Benzema, et al. If we are to beat Barcelona this season, we will need to capitalize on every opportunity as a common practice. We simply cannot afford to miss such opportunities. That was the difference between Real Madrid and Barcelona in the Supercup.

Goals:

  • Alonso: 2
  • Benzema: 1
  • Kaká: 1
  • Marcelo: 1
  • Özil: 1
  • Ronaldo: 4
  • Goals for: 10
  • Goals against: 5

Chelsea 3-1 Norwich

See Chelsea’s official match report.

As of right now, Chelsea is atop of the BPL table. There is much to be said after the third game against Norwich, in which the Blues won 3-1.

Here was the starting lineup:

Hilario
Bosingwa – Ivanovich – Terry – Cole
Ramires – Mikel – Lampard – Malouda
Drogba – Torres

With Lukaku, Sturridge, Torres, and Mata, we can stick with a 4-3-3. Lukaku frankly appears to be a younger, quicker Drogba. Sturridge seems to be a tricky and peppier Anelka from what I have seen. Torres, I hope, will find his form soon as he seems to have the energy. With Mata and Ramires on the wings, we have a lot of potential. Perhaps we could have the Christmas tree up top? Unfortunately, it has been 8 months and Torres has not yet found his form. Whether he will remains to be seen. Should we form our front line with him at point, or should we run a 4-3-3 in which the front line is ever changing, weaving, and threading? I would go with the latter option until he finds his form, if he ever does. Mikel seems to be well-situated in the midfield. With a 4-3-3, I would have to suggest for Lampard and Malouda to take a seat. But not only those two.

Drogba, as much as I love him, has still not recovered his form post malaria. I think he would make a good sub at this point. In the games where he has been subbed on, he had the energy to change the pace of the game. In the games where he has started, it has not boded well for him and the Blues.

Anelka is good, but Sturridge is better in my opinion. Anelka is a proven striker, but it just isn’t clicking right now. Again, I would sub him on as necessary. He is definitely someone we want to keep around, but we need to change things up and get a situated system.

I want to point out Bosingwa. He has been thrilling. Last week, he brought about the winning goal. Today, he was menacing, scoring one goal himself and causing all sorts of problems both defensively and offensively. I am pleasantly surprised. Last season was not good for him, and I don’t remember him prior to that, though long term Blues fans do. I really like Bosingwa on the back right. I also like Ivanovich and Terry. They work well together. Cole is clearly the best choice for the left back. Our back line is steady. The midfield and forward lineup is not, but based on my previous comments, I would utilize the following formation:

Cech
Bosingwa – Ivanovich – Terry – Cole
Ramires – Mikel – Mata
Kulaku – Sturridge – Torres

I would like for David Luiz to be in the lineup. However, he is going to have to sub on. Ivanovich and Terry have become a good central unit. As Ivanovich and Terry age, David Luiz could very well take one of their spots. If Ivanovich or Terry become injured, I have no doubt David Luiz would be useful. Until then, I would stick with Ivanovich and Terry.

Overall, today’s game was a bit frustrating. Drogba got knocked out and taken to the hospital. Hilario made some great saves but also allowed a goal that was clearly his fault. At times our passing was sloppy and our performance lethargic. It wasn’t until Anelka, Mata, and Lukaku came on that we really took solid control of the game. We had more attempts on goal, corners, and free kicks after that point than the rest of the game. Those subs made a huge difference. We need to continue on with this pace. We cannot afford to be lax. We need to be crisp and hungry. Sure, we are atop of the table, but when ManU wins tomorrow, and we can all be confident that they will, they will regain primacy.

Goals:

  • Anelka: 1
  • Bosingwa: 1
  • Lampard: 1
  • Malouda: 1
  • Mata: 1
  • Goals for: 5
  • Goals against: 2

The Future Forward Blues Lineup

Chelsea has had much success with a 4-3-3 formation in recent years. Two seasons ago, we cored over 100 league goals. Our forward lineup that I can remember was Drogba, Anelka, and Kalou. I remember Kalou being a sub and cannot remember who he came on for. Still, these three scored many goals. But we have shown difficulty finishing recently. Let’s face it: Drogba and Anelka aren’t getting any younger, and Kalou doesn’t look like he wants to be there. What beholds the future of our front line?

Sturridge. He proved himself well while on loan at Bolton. I would play him as striker.

Kulaku. He is talented, menacing, and young. With the proper accommodation to the EPL, he will do extremely well.

Torres. Though not yet in top form, he is young enough to afford time to recover and excel.

I can’t wait for Sturridge to play now that his suspension is over. I want to see Torres play 90 minutes as he needs to be given time to get his mojo back. Kulaku needs time to acclamate, but there is no rush. He could be a strong sub throughout this season.

What do you think about this possible triumverate?