Farewell Big, Brutal, Big-Balled B**tard
John Nicholson of F365 writes a tribute to Chelsea’s premier outgoing striker, Didier Drogba, whose Champions League-winning penalty – amongst a ton of another extraordinary achievements and wondrous forward play – has undoubtedly made him a Stamford Bridge legend.
I’m not a big fan of using video compilations to showcase how good a player is if I’ve never seen the player play for a full game, but new Chelsea signing Eden Hazard isn’t any average phony Youtube trickster.
At just 21 years of age, Belgian Hazard has been named Ligue 1’s Player of the Year for two consecutive seasons, also helping his team Lille win the domestic double in the 2010/11 season.
A fearsome yet effective dribbler and technically sound, Hazard looks like a megastar in the making.
Chelsea F.C.: Can’t Buy Me Love
Run of Play’s Brian Phillips writes a typically excellent article for Grantland, reflecting on how Chelsea’s Champions League triumph relates to their original position as a Russian billionaire’s club threatening to overthrow the status quo.
Sid Lowe previews the Copa del Rey final at the Guardian Sportsblog by highlighting the close personal connection between the two sides’ managers: Barcelona’s outgoing Pep Guardiola and Athletic Bilbao’s ‘El Loco‘ Marcelo Bielsa, and how Guardiola’s cycle at the Catalan side has come full circle.
Saying Goodbye to Del Piero
James Horncastle bids farewell, and thank you, to the latest Juventus iconic legend and captain to leave the Turin side, Alessandro Del Piero
Alex Keble argues on FourFourTwo’s Stats Zone blog, why at Euro 2012, England should start Manchester United’s Michael Carrick ahead of midfield competitors Scott Parker and Gareth Barry of Tottenham and league champions Manchester City respectively.
Note that Carrick hasn’t been included in the England’s Euro 2012 squad after he got frustrated at only playing a bit-part role over his whole international career, and wouldn’t return to the fold unless as a key player.
Andrea Pirlo still as good as ever
For Sports Illustrated Football, Adam Digby underlines the pivot which Juventus’ victorious and unbeaten Serie A campaign was built on: Milan castaway and rejuvenated world-class regista Andrea Pirlo.