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La Liga 2018-19: The Next Generation

Discussion in 'Breakfast with Gazza (with Sachmoneious Bullcrap)' started by Zososoxfan, Jul 25, 2018.

  1. Zososoxfan

    Zososoxfan Member SoSH Member

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    4,393
    Last season we had a La Liga thread in addition to the Atleti and Barca threads (no Meringues allowed!) and I thought it was a solid addition. Frankly, there's not always a ton of action in the club-specific threads, so the Liga thread acts as a catch-all at times.

    This season in particular could be a good one for a league thread. Real has gone thru a ton of change, headlined by the departures of Zizou and Ronaldo. The only incoming transfer I'm aware of is Odriozola from Sociedad, which is a nice pickup, but Carvajal is still around (and 26 years old) so this is not some crucial change. I've heard that Benz is still a possibility to leave, but that doesn't seem likely. Bale will really have the onus to shape this year's edition of Real, but he will have plenty of help from Isco, Modric, Kroos, and Casemiro. Asensio will have another year to show that his coming out party two seasons ago was legit and not a flash in the pan. Kovacic, Theo Hernandez, and Lucas Vazquez are still around, so the cupboard is not bare. Nevertheless, this is the shakiest I can remember Real coming into a season since the Mourinho days. I do not know much about Lopetegui as a manager. He has guided the Spain NT since 2016 to a 14-6-0 record (9-1-0 in WCQ) and before that he had 3 OK seasons with Porto. Not that Real would ever admit it, but this would be a great season for them to run out their young guns and see who could be a starter for the next great Madrid team. The current team's core is getting old (Modric, Kroos, Benz, Ramos, Marcelo) and they need to break in some players. Or they could just accelerate the transfer of Mbappe and they will keep threatening for hardware.

    Barca I discussed at length in the Barca thread, but I'm a bit worried about the attack. Luisito is on his last legs as a world class CF, Messi is getting older, Dembouz has all the promise in the world but is a teenager, and it's not clear what Coutinho's best role is for the club. The recent acquisition of Malcom gives Ernie an extra option, and there is some young attacking talent around in Denis, Alena, and Arnaiz, but Ernie has yet to show that he can create a world class attack when Messi and Suarez are not on form. Nevertheless, the club has made some intelligent defensive transfers in the past few seasons (Umtiti, Semedo, Lenglet, Mina, Digne) that will keep them very solid at the back, and if 1-2 players break thru in the MF (Roberto, Samper, Coutinho, Arthur), they could be very strong on a week-to-week basis, but the club may still have a problem in UCL.

    Atleti supporters are likely pleased with the summer transfer window headlined by Griezmann surprising many folks by staying with the Colchoneros instead of hopping over to Barca. Although I didn't think much of his WC, I think Griezmann is a top 10 attacking player in the world and he will continue to improve as he gets more familiar with Costa and his other mates. Bringing in Lemar was a bold move and gives them another dynamic attacker, which is key for this mostly defensive squad. Snapping up Rodri from Villareal was also a shrewd move although the MF is crowded with Saul, Koke, and Thomas. I will be watching the development of Angel Correa closely and Vietto is back from loan, although time is getting short for him in a hurry.

    Valencia are coming off a nice 4th place season and while they lost Cancelo (for $40M!), they grabbed Kondogbia, Diakhaby, Piccini, and Wass. They have a young hungry squad and Marcelino is a solid manager.

    Villareal finished 5th last season and while they lost the aforementioned Rodri to Atleti, they brought in Moreno from Espanyol, Ekambi, Caseres,and Funes Mori. They play attractive football and La Liga is more enjoyable when this club is competitive.

    Betis came out of nowhere last season and finished ahead of local rival Sevilla for 6th. They too attached like glorious bastards and scored 60 goals (only Barca, (99 lol), Real (94), Valencia (65), and Sociedad (66) hit that mark). They lost a promising MF in Ruiz to Napoli and a young CB in Pezzella to Fiorentina, but picked up Carvalho from Sporting.

    Sevilla round out the top 7 and although they have some quality players in Muriel, Banega, and Nzonzi, this is a pretty old team that may be headed for tougher days ahead. I love Joaquin Correa on the wing (Argentina homer alert!), but Lenglet was probably their best player last season and Barca got him.

    Last season's bottom 3 of Depor, Las Palmas, and Malaga were significantly worse than the rest of the league. Depor finished third from the bottom which was still 14 points worse than Leganes.

    Huesca from the Aragon region is joining La Liga for the first time in their history, Vallecano return after a 2 year absence, and Valladolid (the only club in Castile y Leon) is back after a 4 year absence. There are no clubs from Asturias (Oviedo, Gijon), Cantabria (Santander), Navarra (Osasuna), La Rioja (Logrones), Extremadura (Merida, Badajoz), La Mancha (Albacete, Guadelajara, or Murcia (Murcia) this season.
     
  2. slamminsammya

    slamminsammya Member SoSH Member

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    2,322
    Atletico supposedly signing Gelson Martins who was released from his contract at Sporting Clube de Portugal after their bizarre ultras fiasco. He's a beast in football manager!
     
  3. Vinho Tinto

    Vinho Tinto Member SoSH Member

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    5,216
    Sporting will file a lawsuit that will dispute the “release” of Gelson and Rui Patricio.
     
  4. bosox4283

    bosox4283 Member SoSH Member

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    Thanks for starting this thread!

    It's pretty cool that there are four teams from the Basque Country in first division -- Athetic Bilbao, Eibar, Alaves, and Real Sociedad.

    Conversely, southern Spain is pretty light at the moment with our two teams -- Sevilla and Betis -- in first division.
     
  5. slamminsammya

    slamminsammya Member SoSH Member

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    2,322
    Don't forget Podence and Carvalho. Those players altogether were easily worth 70 million Euros in transfer fees, maybe more. What a disaster for Sporting. Carvalho signed with Betis, relevant to this thread.
     
  6. bosox4283

    bosox4283 Member SoSH Member

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    Do we know what TV channel is carrying La Liga this year? Is it BEIN again?

    Last year, I used GO90 to watch games -- I think it was a Verizon thing? -- but it has since been discontinued.
     
  7. Domer

    Domer Well-Known Member Bronze Supporter SoSH Member

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    BeIN has LaLiga trough 2019-20. The channel is currently unavailable on Xfinity due to a carriage dispute.
     
  8. bosox4283

    bosox4283 Member SoSH Member

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    3,646
    Super Cup talk here?

    Costa with a brilliant goal in the first minute!
     
  9. bosox4283

    bosox4283 Member SoSH Member

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    Thanks.
     
  10. bosox4283

    bosox4283 Member SoSH Member

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    Atletico is doing Atletico-things: playing defensively, making me nervous with the defensive line quite close to Oblak, and waiting for the counter.

    I get it, I do. This strategy yields results, and this match is the first of the season. But I'm a little tired of playing so deferential against Real Madrid when Altetico's team is equal if not a bit better. Saul, Koke, Griezmann, Costa, and Lemar are really, really good.
     
  11. bosox4283

    bosox4283 Member SoSH Member

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    Atletico has had a brilliant first part of the extra time!
     
  12. Zososoxfan

    Zososoxfan Member SoSH Member

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    Congrats Bosox. As for La Liga, I'm likely cutting the cord this week and getting SlingTV Orange and Blue Package plus Sports Add On. I'm debating between Roku and Firestick, but I will report back after I get started.
     

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