Archive for December 1st, 2007

Milan-Juventus: 2 Hours to Kick-Off

Saturday, December 1st, 2007


The final countdown has begun in Milan: only 2 hours left for the biggest soccer showdown of the week-end, AC Milan-Juventus. Over 76,000 people are expected at San Siro tonight, despite the fact that Juventus supporters have been forbidden access.

AC Milan latest

Manager Carlo Ancelotti has called upon 18 players for this match, with little doubt on who will be fielded in the starting lineup. Paolo Maldini is a clear favorite over Serginho for the left-back position (given the Brazilian’s very shaky performance in the Champions League match Wednesday). Also, it would create a big gap on the wings to have both Serginho and Massimo Oddo (on the right), because these are two players who like to push up a lot.

The final practice session at Milanello yesterday didn’t reveal too much in terms of line-up choices though, because the Milan coach mixed and matched his formations quite often. It would be very surprising to see anything other than the usual “Xmas tree formation” (4-3-2-1) for AC Milan, with Alberto Gilardino at the top and Pippo Inzaghi on the bench.

As for Ronaldo, Emerson and Marek Jankulovski, they are on the injury list (although both Ronaldo and Jankulovski should be available for the Club World Cup in Japan).

Juventus latest

In the past week, Claudio Ranieri seemed to favor a 4-4-2 line-up with David Trezeguet-Vincenzo Iaquinta as the lone strikers, with Alessandro Del Piero ready to step in like in the Palermo game. However, that hypothesis included a healthy Mauro Camoranesi, which unfortunately has been forced to a forfeit for Saturday’s big match.

While the 4-4-2 option is still open (with Marco Marchionni or Raffaele Palladino to replace the Italo-Argentine winger), the more likely solution from yesterday’s practice seems to be a 4-3-1-2 with Del Piero operating behind the two strikers, in front of a 3-man midfield (Nocerino, C.Zanetti, Nedved).

Giorgio Chiellini is back from suspension and should pair up with Nicola Legrottaglie at the heart of the Juve defense. With Zdenek Grygera still out, the wing-backs will be Jonathan Zebina and Cristian Molinaro.

The excitement is growing, only 2 hours to the match! :mrgreen: Kick-off is at 20:30 CET (14:30 ET).

‘Share Your Football Experiences’ Soccerlens Contest

Saturday, December 1st, 2007

Soccerlens, Football News You Can Trust


As many of you know already, in addition to mCalcio I have been writing for Soccerlens for several months now, and am currently part of their Editor staff.

Due to the enormous success of their previous writing contest (for which I appeared on the judge panel), Soccerlens will be launching a new contest for the month of December, for which the theme will be:

Share Your Football Experiences

If you have a favourite / most memorable real-life, personal footballing experience, and would like to tell others about it, this is your best shot. Experiences can be about anything that is related to football (soccer).

You could talk for instance, about playing the game (is there a game you played in which something so special took place that you will remember it all your life?), meeting a real life football professional, watching the game (is there a match you watched in the stadium or on television, that you experienced in a personal way worth writing about), or even… refereeing the game (we all screamed “kill the ref he’s blind” at some point or another, but perhaps there are some referees out there (amateur or professional) who would like to share their thoughts, on what it feels like to be on the other side of the whistle).

I’m only giving you a few examples here, the sky’s the limit.

As a guideline and to give you an idea of what we expect, read “The Heart of Football” by Kris or “My Friend Who Played With Pelé” by Steve Amoia.

The contest will last for one week exactly, and articles will be published between Monday December 3rd and Sunday December 9th (inclusive). For that effect, the Soccerlens editors (that is, Ahmed Bilal and myself :) ) would like all your articles in our mailbox by Sunday December 9th at 23:59.


  • 1 submission per person.
  • All emails must be sent to contests(AT)soccerlens(dot)com with the subject ‘Writing Competition’.
  • Article Length: There’s a misconception that longer pieces do better – however a minimum of 500 words is expected, and because we don’t want book submissions, an upper limit of 2000 words will be enforced. Find your own space in between.
  • If you’re taking information from somewhere, mention your sources (in-context links).
  • Get your facts right and use a spell checker – we’re less strict on grammar but it would be advisable to fix that too :)
  • Submissions must be sent before the deadline (23:59, Sunday December 9th) – This deadline will be enforced without exceptions, so stick to it :) .

Note that this contest has no prizes, but the winning articles will be used to pick future writers for Soccerlens. This is your chance to show your stuff. :)

Alright then – send in your submissions at contests(AT)soccerlens(dot)com, and if you have any questions ask them in the official contest post. Feel free to promote this contest on your blogs and forums as well – any mentions will be noticed and appreciated.