Yet more misery for Manchester United this weekend but high hopes that Juventus have found the ultimate team in our latest winners and losers
Seven wins in seven Serie A games, eight in eight considering the Champions League. Napoli were demolished 3-1 at home. Juventus seem like a team capable of going on to win every single Serie A game this season. Cristiano Ronaldo has turned into an assist man for Mario Mandzukic and the Bianconeri reacted to a good Napoli start by firing home three goals and being superior to their opponents on every level.
A last minute draw that counts like a victory in Stamford Bridge. The Reds managed not to lose despite suffering against Chelsea, and Daniel Sturridge’s last minute goal is one that could be decisive come the end of the season. Not losing these kind of games is the difference between a very good team and a solid, top level, one. Liverpool are becoming the latter, and remain one of the favourites to win the Premier League.
One of the most struggling teams in Europe, came out of this weekend with a win in the Derby. The Roman Derby against Lazio is the most important game of the season for Roma, and despite initially conceding some chances to Lazio, the Giallorossi came out on top, scoring three times and finally showing overall solidity and a winning game-plan. This could be the turning point for Eusebio Di Francesco’s team this year.
Difficult to say how much it is Jose Mourinho’s fault, and how much it’s the players underperforming. But the truth is that United are tenth in the Premier League table, with only ten points, already nine behind the leaders. Simply not good enough for the Red Devils, and it doesn’t look like there are any solutions coming up. Getting rid of the manager could be the quick short-term move, but long-term it might not be the case. Difficult times at Old Trafford for everyone involved.
Lionel Messi came on and showed the world why he is one of the greatest of all time. But Barcelona cannot afford to be this reliant on their number ten. The 1-1 draw against Athletic Bilbao showed all the problems of the Catalans, who struggled to have fluid attacking football and conceded at the back. When Messi came on, everything changed, but of course the likes of Luis Suarez should already be good enough to win these kind of games at home.
The first defeat of the season, a solid 2-0 victory for Hertha Berlin, with the Bavarians now trailing behind Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga table. Losing to Hertha is not the end of the world, seeing as how well the Berlin side have started this season, but for Bayern to have such an anonymous game is usually never the case domestically. “Niko Kovac’s side has racked up 13 points in the league so far, and are just one point behind Dortmund, so are still well on track to lift the trophy come May”