Saturday, March 24, 2007

Oliver Kahn: Making It Rain

UEFA suspended Bayern Munich goalie Oliver Kahn for the first leg of the squad's Champions League quarterfinal match with AC Milan. The suspension is a result of Kahn throwing the cup for collecting urine during a doping test after his team's second leg Champions League victory over Real Madrid on March 7.

The goalkeeper was tested after Bayern's 2-1 win against Real Madrid on March 7 in the Champions League.

The doctor conducting the test -- Franz Kroesslhuber of Austria -- said Kahn got angry when asked for a second sample, according to Bild. The doctor didn't see Kahn provide the first sample and asked for it be done again to conform to the rules. Kahn had tried for 1 1/2 hours to comply, then threw the cup, Bild said.

What? "Kahn had tried for 1 1/2 hours to comply..." That must have been some scene. Doctor and Kahn sitting in a room waiting for Kahn to pee, Kahn gets up to do the deed, doc follows to observe according to the rules, Kahn whips it out and discovers he can't, "scheisse, nichts," repeat, repeat, then Kahn throws the cup. And, really, he couldn't get a few drops out in over an hour?
Oliver Kahn, giving "Making it Rain" an added dimension.

photo courtesy here.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

A Little Negligent

The next week or so is going to be a bit sparse around here because I have a new job. I am trying to get settled into a routine right now and will be able to post more next week. For now enjoy this video of some great goals from the 2005-06 (I think) English Premier League season.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Melee at the Mestalla Update

Last week I posted the video of the fight that erupted after Valencia eliminated Inter Milan in the Champions League round of 16. Visually it was quite comical seeing David Navarro run around like the Road Runner escaping the clutches of Wile E. Coyote, but it did result in Inter's Nicolas Burdisso suffering a broken nose. Now UEFA has brought the hammer down on those involved.

Valencia's David Navarro received a 7-month ban, while the man on the receiving end of his punch got a 6 match ban. UEFA is asking that FIFA extend Navarro's ban to international competitions as well. Inter's Maicon (6 matches), Ivan Cordoba (3 matches) , Julio Cruz (2 matches) also earned bans and Valencia's Carlos Marchena has a 4 match ban. Both clubs were fined 250,000 Swiss Francs (about $200,000). No stadium ban was issued for Valencia in the Quarterfinal matchup with Chelsea.

I can't get over the 7-month ban. It just seems very long, but maybe he's getting punished for a hit-and-run as well.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Blazers Rookie Blog

Just got an email announcing the Blazers Rookie Blog. It looks as though the blog is only for Brandon Roy and LaMarcus Aldridge. Sergio Rodriguez gets no love. I'm sure the Blazers organization could find write some posts for him as well. As it stands now, only Brandon Roy has posted something. Roy writes that his girlfriend is due any day now with his first child and he thinks Oregon could be dangerous in the tourney this year.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Champions League LiveBlog: Arsenal v. PSV 2nd Half

Well, I missed the last ten minutes to the first half but it is still scoreless so, I guess I didn't miss much. I'm still working on getting my feed back up. Please bear with me.

Despite my best efforts I cannot get the Arsenal game on a feed. I can get every other CL match in multiple languages but I can't get this one. I will continue trying but no promises. My apologies.

Hooray! I finally found one that works. It's in Russian or some slavic language and there is no clock but I see that Henry has been subbed in to the game.

And now they show Henry grimacing in pain. For Henry, and not for Arsenal, the best thing that could happen, I think, is that the Gunners don't advance in CL and shut Henry down for the season. He needs time to recover from his injuries, which he hasn't had because of last year's World Cup and his long run in the CL last season.

Update: Henrik Larrson just scored a header for ManU from a beautiful cross from Ronaldo. 1-0 ManU.

PSV gives up a dangerous free kick from the right side of the box. Diaby on for Ljungberg. Arsneal get its chance but can't capitalize on it or the ensuing corner.

Another free kick, straight on from about 30 yards out for Arsenal. Henry put it on goal but Gomes made a good diving save to his right.

Fabregas booked for a hard tackle.

Hleb whistled for slamming Sun Xiang to the ground. He can't believe it.

GOAL! 1-1. And on the ensuing free kick PSV finds Alex skying about the Arsenal defense for a header that beats Lehmann. A very nice goal indeed. That may seal Arsenal's fate now.

I guess the goal crashed my computer because immediately after it everything went to hell in a handbasket. This sucked.

Arsenal is now out of if for any silverware this season. Now the squad is only playing for a spot in next year's champions league and battling Liverpool for 3rd in the Premiership.

Elsewhere, ManU went through with a 1-0 victory over Lille; Bayern overcame a 3-2 home loss in the first leg to win the second leg 2-1 and advance on away goals; and, the Celtic - AC Milan match is in overtime and Milan has a 1-0 lead that will put them through if it holds.

Champions League LiveBlog: Arsenal v. PSV 1st Half

Champions League LiveBlog: Arsenal – PSV 1st Half

The Arsenal – PSV liveblog was chosen by the commenters on this blog. Hopefully, this turns out to be the best match of the day.

The return leg of this matchup is at Arsenal’s new Emirates Stadium and it finds Arsenal in hole after its 1-0 loss to PSV two weeks ago. It also finds Arsenal out of form having just come out of a three-game losing streak with an unimpressive 2-1 win against Reading on Saturday. Although, it must be noted that Arsenal has had a run of bad luck with injuries including captain Thierry Henry, who has been determined fit for this match but won't start.

PSV, for its part, is having a good season. It is 8 points clear of second place in the Dutch Eredivisie, although the squad just crashed out of its Cup competition. PSV, if it wins or draws today will also advance to the Champions League quarterfinals. Not a bad season. Arsenal on the other hand has only the Champions League left to obtain hardware for the season. It is out of the Premiership title chase and is out of the Carling and FA Cup competitions.

As always, feel free to leave comments or email me at thefansattic [at] gmail [dot] com.


PSV: Gomes, Alex, Feher, Salcido, Sun Xiang, Cocu, Culina, Mendez, Simons, Farfan, Kone

Arsenal: Lehmann, Clichy, Gallas, Toure, Silva, Baptista, Denilson, Fabregas, Hleb, Ljungberg, Adebayor

Predictions anyone? I think we see Arsenal go out of the competition on away goals after a 2-1 victory. Away goals seem to be the way to go this round.

I’ll be attempting to liveblog the match via an internet feed so let’s all hope that my internet connection holds up and my computer doesn’t crash. It’s a bit of a dinosaur so things can go wrong with several applications running.

Commenter Cedrick doesn’t like my prediction saying his Gunners will prevail. Well, in my defense I did say Arsenal would win today’s matchup just that it wouldn't advance.

Kickoff – There was no pregame on my internet feed although I got to watch some South African club action (I think it was S. African). Sundowns beat Leopards 4-0. I was worried I got the wrong channel especially with the ManU - Lille match already starting on ESPN2.

3:00 – Early corner for PSV but no danger resulted from it. Anybody care to keep us updated on the Celtic – AC Milan and Bayern – Real Madrid matches?

6:00 – Another corner for PSV but headed away by Fabregas. Hleb gave the ball away carelessly on his end but Toure saved his bacon. PSV has looked crisp thus far and Arsenal has been haphazard with its passing. Although, Adebayor had a nifty run on the right side that he shot into the side netting.

9:00 - Arsenal is picking up the pace and the passes are strung together better as well.

11:00 - Gallas loses a contact lens and play is held up a bit.

12:00 - Gallas back on and the announcers are having a bit of fun saying Gallas can't see the pitch. PSV's Farfan tried a shot from a very difficult angle on the right side but Lehmann had the post covered easily.

15:00 - Ljungberg called for a foul for climbing on the back of a PSV defender to go for a header. He complains to the ref that you can't call a foul on an underwear model.

16:00 - Fabregas makes a wonderful pass to Adebayor in the box but his touch is a bit off and Gomes smothers it for PSV. Very good chance for Arsenal who seem to be picking it up a bit.

18:00 - Again Adebayor muffs his touch inside the box. Kone gets the ball on the counter but Arsenal slows him. I have been very impressed with Kone in the two matches so far. He has good touch and excellent pace.

22:00 - Toure knocks an excellent shot on goal from just inside the box on the right side. Gomes can only deflect it and the rebound gives Arsenal another good chance but can't capitalize. Adebayor has been seeing the ball a lot just hasn't been able to connect with anything or have a good touch.

26:00 - According to the announcers, PSV Brazilian defender Alex is nicknamed the Beast. Oddly enough, Arsenal's Brazilian midfielder Baptista is also nicknamed the Beast. Can there be two players from the same country on the same field with the same nickname? Baptista by the way just had an excellent side volley just go over the bar.

29:00 - I can't help but wonder what would it be like if there was a healthy Henry on the receiving end of all the excellent feeds Adebayor has received. Alex had denied Adebayor several times now and Adebayor has just failed to make good passes or touches.

33:00 - Arsenal was lucky that Philip Coco couldn't get a solid head on the cross from Mendez. Cocu was unmarked on his run through the box. Arsenal's defense is just not looking good. They will have to play like Barcelona last night to protect the suspect defense right now.

36:00 - Wow! That was a nice attempt at a bicycl by Baptista. He controlled the ball with chest and popped it up to set up his bike which went over the bar. Uh-oh. My feed is having problems. Hopefully I can get it back up quickly.

45:00 - Stupid feed is taking forever to "buffer." What have I missed?

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Inter Milan v. Valencia Fight: Carmelo Anthony's Long Lost Cousin?

I hadn't heard anything about this until I read The Offside this afternoon but there was a big fracas after Valencia - Inter Milan Champions League match on Tuesday. Valencia advanced on away goals after the 0-0 draw today. I'm sorry for more video posts but this had to go up.

A Valencia sub, David Navarro, came on the pitch after there was a scrum between Inter and Valencia players and decked Nicolas Burdisso of Inter possibly breaking his nose. After the punch, Inter players chased Navarro all over the field trying to trip him. They didn't succeed. Navarro even gets a nice jump punch in there at one point.

At least Navarro has elusiveness going for him since he already suffers from Carmelo Anthony disease.

After the match it looks like some Inter players tried to get into the Valencia lockerroom. I'll try to get more information up later but for now enjoy the video.

Big thanks to The Offside for the tip.

Update: Burdisso did break his nose. It was Inter keeper Francesco Toldo who entered the Valencia dressing room. Figo and Inter's Esteban Cambiasso also tussled while trying to get into the lockerroom after Toldo.

Valencia & Inter Fights
Uploaded by Cozzy1990

A Moment of Brilliance

Roma triumphed over Lyon 2-0 on Tuesday in the Champions League Round of 16 matchup. I didn't see the match but I have seen the highlights and the goal below is the highlight of the match. A simply sublime showing of footwork by Roma's Brazilian midfielder Alessandro Mancini. Enjoy.

Update: I forgot to thank Deadspin commenter Chilltown for providing the link. Thanks buddy, excellent find.

Mancini Stepovers and Goal vs Lyon
Uploaded by Cozzy1990

Wednesday Champions League LiveBlog: Arsenal v. PSV

Tomorrow I'll be liveblogging the return leg of the Arsenal - PSV matchup. The match isn't on ESPN2 tomorrow so I'll go at it with an internet feed. I'll start around 11:15-11:20 with kickoff around 11:45. Hope to see you then.

LiveBlog: Liverpool v. Barcelona 2nd Half

It will be interesting to see what Frank Rijkard does during halftime for Barcelona. It is quite obvious that this lineup he has now isn't producing. It has had chances but nothing is built up. The midfield certainly isn't controlling the ball and has given it up easily on a number of occasions. The defense is just hanging on right now, which would be fine if the team wasn't down 2-1 on aggregate. The Spanish side needs to shore up its defense and provide better fluidity between defense and offense. It's a lot to ask in only a halftime but I would still be worried if I were Liverpool. The talent is there on the Barca squad. It only takes a few chances.

Before today's match, Rijkard called Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez a "know-it-all" for his proclamation that Eto'o, Messi, and Ronaldinho would be starting up top for Barca. Well, it turns out Rafa was right. Does this mean Rafa is really a "know-it-all" or was he just lucky?

Roma's up 2-0 on Lyon now, which should send the Italian squad through. Porto still leads 1-0 on Chelsea. This will send Porto through if it stands. Valencia and Inter Milan are tied 0-0 which will send Valencia through based on the away goal rule if the score stands.

The stats show Barca with a 72-28 advantage in time of possession. That doesn't seem right to me.

46:00 - Bellamy just wasted an excellent opportunity from a Gerrard cross. That had goal written all over it.

48:00 - Derek Rae just called Barca "temorous" (sp?)...I've never heard the word...anybody out there help a blogger out?

timorous - of a timid disposition. As I suspected. Thanks whomever you are.

52:00 - Pepe Reina read Ronaldinho's free kick beautifully. Liverpool just isn't able to capitalize on its opportunities this game. It is similar to Saturday's ManU match. Just as I type that, Ronaldinho beat everybody and hits the right post. Incredibly unfortunate for him that it didn't go in.

53:00 - Thuram just elbowed Bellamy in the face but didn't get his second yellow. Just a talking to. It's an odd decision based on the ref's cards in the first half.

ESPN2's broadcast isn't telling us the Chelsea-Porto score because it is showing the game later. Well, I can't find that score anywhere else. I guess I'm screwed.

61:00 - This game is definitely heating up. The Barca lineup is starting to create chances and the tackles are getting harder. Liverpool looks a bit unsettled right now. Eto'o comes off and Giuly is on. Eto'o was starting to look good but his fitness just isn't where it needs to be right now.

62:00 - Liverpool's counter attacks keep providing many chances. Kuyt just sent a long shot wide right but it was still dangerous.

Robben scored for Chelsea to level the match and aggregate in the 48th minute. Thanks anonymous for the update.

67:00 - Pennant on for Bellamy just like in the ManU game.

69:00 - The announcers have mentioned several times that the new American owners of Liverpool are in attendance for their first match. I wonder what they think of their new asset.

70:00 - Arbeloa concedes a corner to Barca and the defense has trouble clearing the ball. It bounces around several times and Barca just can't turn it into anything.

71:00 - Gudjohnsen on for Thuram. More offense and less defense for Barcelona.

73:00 - Reina doing some time killing. The ball advances quickly and Gerrard gets a strong shot on Valdes who deflects it. Then just as quick Barca counters and gets an opportunity but one player is just offside. This match is getting faster and faster. I'm not sure who that favors. Barca has the offensive talent but Liverpool's counters have been great.

75:00 - Except Gudjohnsen just scored for Barca. Game on. 1-0 Barcelona.

76:00 - I guess the fast pace helps Barca because Ronaldinho just had an excellent shot that Reina smothered. This game is really good.

77:00 - Aurelio on for Riise. Not much of a change on Rafa's part.

80:00 - Pennant booked for coming in high and cleating Messi in the thigh.

81:00 - Reina cautioned for time wasting.

82:00 - Kuyt just played great defense winning the ball away from Barca's defense which lead to a dangerous free kick direct on the goal at about 22 yards. The kick yields a corner and again Gerrard ends up with the ball and kicks the ball right at Valdes. Gerrard can't catch a break right now.

87:00 - Eleven behind the ball and Finnan makes a great stop when Gudjohnsen got in behind him with a ball dropping in. Finnan concedes a corner. Still on 'Pool's end. Now a goal kick.

88:00 - Deep throw in after Arbeloa heads it out.

89:00 -Another corner but Barca can't capitalize. Crouch and his two black eyes on for Bellamy.

90:00 - I've got to hand it to Crouch. He is supposed to have surgery on his broken nose but he postponed it for this match. 3 minutes stoppage time.

90:00 +1 - Ball played into space for Pennant who puts a great ball on to a streaking Crouch who sends it over the bar. I never thought streaking and Crouch would go together because he looks so slow but he really went after that ball.

90:00 +3 - What a thrilling match. Final whistle. Barcelona 1- Liverpool 0 but Liverpool advances on the away goal rule.

Join me tomorrow for another Champions League LiveBlog. It looks like it will be the Arsenal - PSV matchup based on the comments. I'll start tomorrow between 11:15 and 11:20. Thanks for joining me today.

Update: Roma advances 2-0 on aggregate over Lyon. Valencia advances over Inter with the away goal rule on a 2-2 aggregate. Chelsea also will advance after winning 2-1 over Porto on goals by Arjen Robben and Michael Ballack with a 3-2 aggregate.

LiveBlog: Liverpool v. Barcelona 1st Half

In the first leg of this matchup, Liverpool prevailed 2-1 on the strength of Craig Bellamy's iron game in the Nou Camp. The second leg finds the defending champions, Barcelona, on the ropes having suffered a weekend loss to Seville relinquishing first place in La Liga and all sort of internal intrigue. Ronaldinho and Eto'o are not on good terms; players are upset with manager Frank Rijkard; and the team is not living up to the gold standard set by last year's squad. If Barca can corral all of this and focus it on Liverpool there should be a classic matchup.

Liverpool, for its part, have been in good form but Saturday's last minute loss to hated rivals Manchester United may affect the team psyche as well as its fitness. The English side put forth a full strength squad for Saturday's match and many of those participants will have to go again rather soon. Luckily, no injuries resulted from Saturday's game. The team will have to guard against overconfidence in the 2-1 aggregate lead it has and the letdown of the ManU game. The team knows this is its last chance for glory this campaign and should come out in full force.

If you have questions, comments, criticisms, or dirty jokes, you can leave them in the comments, email me at thefansattic [at] gmail [dot] com, or IM today on AIM (screenname TheFansAtticBlog).


Barcelona: Valdes, Marquez, Oleguer, Puyol, Thuram, Deco, Iniesta, Xavi, Ronaldinho, Eto'o, Messi

Liverpool: Reina, Agger, Arbeloa, Carragher, Finnan, Riise, Alonso, Gerrard, Sissoko, Bellamy, Kuyt

Predictions anyone?

I flipped over to ESPN2 about 3 minutes too early and got an eyeful of something hideous--a world's strongest man competitor in a banana hammock. I think there should be warnings about this sort of stuff.

They showed Riise's legs before kickoff and it looks like they are recovered from the karaoke incident.


3:00 - not much action yet but Liverpool must be hoping that the Sissoko of the first leg shows up and not the Sissoko of the ManU match.

4:00 - as soon as I post that Gerrard sends a long pass on to Kuyt but it's just a touch too long as Valdes comes out just in time to pick up the ball.

6:00 - The three back lineup is looking shaky at this point for Barca as Liverpool has had a couple of dispossessions in midfield that make the blaugrana scramble back on defense.

9:00 - Tommy Smythe encourages Bellamy to hit Riise with golf clubs before every match because they played well after the last incident. Nice. Just then Riise sends one just wide right of the goal as Barca's defense still looks out of sorts.

10:00 - The thing is, as long as Barca doesn't concede a goal the defense is fine because the offense is so potent it can score quickly and against the run of play.

14:00 - Riise is having a great game so far with two shots, one that hit the crossbar, a corner won and some good feeds.

18:00 - Arbeloa goes into the book with a hard tackle on Messi. On the freekick Reina punches the ball out but Eto'o whiffs on his shot attempt but Barca still had an opportunity until Reina left the goal mouth to track down a loose ball.

20:00 - Sissoko into the book. He'll miss the next CL match if there is one. Did you see his hair? It looked like Shane Battier's wrinkly head but with the lines shaved in rather than natural. The free kick made it through the Liverpool defence and Marquez flicked it wide left. He was offside too.

23:00 - Barbaro, I mean Ronaldinho, pleads for a call when it looks like he was at fault.

26:00 - I don't know how Liverpool isn't up 1-0 after 4 consecutive shots on goal in a 4 second time frame. Valdes made a good save on Bellamy's first attempt from the right flank. The rebound went to Kuyt who was saved by Valdes and then Riise had another crack deflected. Finally Valdes grabbed the ball.

28:00 - Thuram into the book.

33:00 - Valdes makes a horrific blunder giving up the ball in his own half and is lucky Sissoko had his 35 yard shot bounce off the crossbar. Valdes is either going to be the hero or the goat in this one.

Porto is up 1-0 on Chelsea with a 15' goal from Quaresma. Roma is up 1-0 on Lyon on a Totti goal at 22'.

35:00 - Ronaldinho left unmarked on a corner but sends his volley way over the net from outside the 18.

37:00 - Kuyt down on the ground after a head-to-head contact with Marquez. He'll be ok. Marquez on the other hand, never will be.

39:00 - Eto'o called offside after he got behind the 'Pool defense, but Barca had a nice build up. The layoff is hurting Eto'o's timing right now.

43:00 - Ronaldinho had a nice run up the middle of the pitch and dumped it off to Eto'o but again he messes it up as Carragher took the ball away easily.

45:00 - Dangerous corner for Barcelona but Liverpool manages to come away unscathed.

Liverpool dominated the first half and is set to advance if it remains nil-nil. Join me in the 2nd Half post.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Champions League LiveBlogs

Tuesday and Wednesday mark the return legs for the Round of 16 Champions League matches. I'll be liveblogging Tuesday's Liverpool-Barcelona match which is set for 11:30 PST on ESPN2. I will try to kick off the liveblog around 11:15.

As for Wednesday's liveblog, there are several options. The ESPN2 game is scheduled to be ManU-Lille. I can find feeds for the other 3 (Bayern Munich-Real Madrid; Celtic-AC Milan; Arsenal-PSV) and will liveblog whichever match gets the most votes in the comments.

Hope to see everyone here this week.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

The First Birthday

Today marks one year that The Fan's Attic has been in existence. The time has really flown by and I have found the blogging experience to be very rewarding and, at times, frustrating. I suppose that goes with just about anything. As of today, there have been over 37,000 visitors to The Fan's Attic of which approximately 30,000 can be attributed to me checking in everyday to see if I have been linked or if someone has left a comment. By the way, the comments I have received are probably the most rewarding aspect of this endeavor. I just wanted to say thank you to all of you who have visited, linked to, and/or commented. I appreciate it very much.

For the next year, I would like to increase the number of visitors to 75,000 for the year and to improve the content. Lately, I have been lazy and only posted a videos. I hope to provide more editorial content and, hopefully, some original information. If any of the 5 readers out there have suggestions, tips or criticisms on how to improve this blog please let me know either in the comments or at thefansattic [at] gmail [dot] com.

Again, thanks for visiting.