Saturday, November 10, 2007
19 Goals in 3 Games: Quantity or Quality?
The last two weeks saw writing of some interesting history in English football. In a span of 10 days only, Arsenal and Liverpool broke the record twice in recording the largest score margin ever in the UEFA Championship history.
First the Gunners turned Slavia Prague into football slaves literally. With a 7-0 win, the Wenger boys were all over themselves with almost every player (including the keeper) wanting to join in the goal fest. Besides the encounter being very embarrassing the Cech Republic team, it made the prolific Cesc Fabregas look like a dynamo from outer space in the midfield. To be honest Fabregas was fabulous.
But before Arsene Wenger could relish the historic win in preparation for the return leg that marked his 100th Championship match as Manager, Liverpool spoilt the party. Standing second from bottom in thier group, the Liverpool went into their last Championship match staring early elimination in the face. But at the end of the match after walloping Besiktas 8-0, Rafa's Reds broke Arsenal's week-old record.
Add to that Manchester United's latest love with scores coming in fours. After rounding Dynamo Kiev of Ukraine 4-2 at their own backyard, the Red Devils ensured the return leg at Old Trafford was a clean four with no concession.
May be in retrospection Sir Alex Ferguson knew a thing we ordinary mortals were not privy to in bringing Carlos Tavez to partner Wayne Rooney. "Psycho" Tavez is finally making the mundane-but-overrated Rooney shine and spark. No wonder Rooney has finally won the Barclays Premier League's best player for the month of October. The British press can can only afford a mute acknowledgement of Ronaldo's genius. Well that is English sense of patriotism if you ask me.
Beauty and the beast
But are these avalanche of goals a reflection of the quality of the beautiful game? Probably yes except only in terms of advertisement and media blitz. But trust the English hype to go in an overdrive to overshadow any competition, real or perceived.
With players like Rooney and John Terry earning close to £ 150,000 (KES 20 million) a week, these chaps have to be turned into robots if that would make them appear to earn their obscene salaries.
The jury is still out in the beauty of the beautiful game. Entertaining yes it is but quality compared to other leagues well, it depends on what your parameters are.