Let the (CL) games begin!

Excited about today’s UEFA Champions League game against Young Boys. Today’s team selection will give a clear input on what is Ole’s plans for the squad. 

Is he planning to rotate? Is he still going to be pragmatic? The opposition is no way an easy team. 

Lindelof is an interesting thing. We have to wait and see if cup games will be the only action he will get. Tinkering with the back five will be interesting to see. 

Ole will definitely make it to the end of the season, no matter how abysmal he is. Unless of course some really good manager is available during the season. 

All the best Ole. Let’s see what you got.  

Manchester United 4-1 Newcastle United

A shambolic first-half performance – a classic OleOut performance. Tepid passing, zero creativity to the right of midfield. There was a stroke of luck at the end of the first half, and we somehow managed to creep into a 1-0 lead.

Minutes into the second, and we already conceded an equalizer. For all the defensive qualities of AWB, he offers nothing going forward. Greenwood hardly tracks for most of the game. Chugging at snail’s pace against a low block with no width will be found in away games and against bigger teams.

The players off the bench made a massive difference as the class and quality became evident once they came on and turned on the flair. If Ole wants to stay as United manager, he has to grow a pair and play players who know how to ball.

Scoreline flatters. Ronaldo clinical. Midfield came alive in the second half to rescue the points. One thing is for sure. This team’s only limiting factor is #OleOut. Let’s see how things pan out in the forthcoming games. Happy for Jesse, VdB and Martial getting minutes.

Pragmatic Southgate

It was pretty evident in this game as well. Poland physically pushed a team that is taught to play slow passing through a mid to low block and failed miserably.

Shaw, Grealish and Mount kept playing ineffective triangles. Poland probably would have won the game if it were not for Phillips in the middle of the park.

Not a single substitution in the entire game. Southgate believed England was in ‘control’ for the majority of the game. England, of course, will qualify for the World Cup in Qatar next year. They just won’t succeed under this manager.

I have never seen Kane so ineffective in an England shirt, both in the Euros and now. Shoddy managing can make even the best players look crap. Look at United. Ole has been doing that for ages.

Kohli and his steely men

I am absolutely over the moon. Due to a busier day at work and some commitments, I managed to only watch the last session bit of Day 5. I started watching from seven wickets down.

Following the commentary at the tea break and watching the whole reverse swinging yorkers from Bumrah breaching furniture evoked goosebumps. Commentators at the end of Day 4 play were questioning what would Thakur offer on a pitch as flat as this. Guess what? That man not only came up trumps in both innings with effervescent half-centuries, but he also went on to take the two big wickets of the fourth innings.

Everybody questioned Kohli for not picking Ashwin for this test, and yet, Kohli has redeemed his wild card Thakur like a million-dollar lottery.

What a handsome position to be in going into the final test. India is going places.

Enthralling final day at the Oval

What an exciting final day of cricket awaits us. A flat pitch. England can actually go on and win this. Our middle order stuck it in, but Pant and Thakur, after biding so much time to get to their 50s, threw it away, trying to take the game by the scruff of its neck.

After a first-innings collapse, it is fair to say that scoring 400 plus in the second innings meant batting definitely got a lot easier. However, the Indian bowlers were not consistent at the beginning of the fourth innings and as a result, both the openers settled into fluent batting.

I have never seen Jadeja ball this bad. Often so consistent with his line and length, he was seen spraying it all over the pitch. A lot of criticism for not selecting Ashwin for this test. Hope it does not come back and bite Kohli. He backs his players to the hilt anyway.

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