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The Roar

Jorge Tsabasidis

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Joined December 2019

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Founding Father of the Church of Angelos Charisteas, the greatest footballer to grace the Earth. Supporter of Liverpool FC and the mighty North Melbourne Kangaroos.

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As a Liverpool supporter, I thought we’d never see a better striker than Fernando Torres after he departed. Little did I know we’d get one in a matter of days!

13/14 Suarez was incredible. So many goals/moments that left you astonished. Unfortunately, his indiscretions means he’ll probably never get the credit he deserves.

Luis Suarez's 2013-14 was the greatest individual season in Premier League history

Portugal won fair and square. No complaint there.

What I will say is while they did beat Croatia and France (two eventual World Cup finalists), they also had Wales and Poland as knockout round opponents.

Not the hardest run in for them – or France, really, who beat Ireland and Iceland to make the semi-final! We’ll no doubt see more of this next year and, like you said, UEFA have basically laid out a precedent that will see FIFA making a 48 team World Cup.

Material for my next article, perhaps?

How UEFA softened the European Championships

‘Often it’s decided after the first two games of the three matches within the pool and the third and forth side by third game are only playing for pride Eg Peru and Socceroos at Russia 2018’

Yep, and it provides a perfect illustration of one of my original points – both sides bottled their first two games (harsh on Australia to end up losing to France I must say) – and they were rightly put into a difficult situation in the final game. Simple.

‘sport is a business and casual fans want tension and excitement they don’t care about integrity or mediocrity being rewarded, wake up you football purist…’

Yes, UEFA likes money. FIFA likes money. We get it. Doesn’t mean the obvious softening of tournaments is exempt from criticism, even if some prefer the watered-down free-pass version.

How UEFA softened the European Championships

‘Screw your mediocrity being rewarded purist traditionalist outlook’

Wasn’t always 16 teams. Started with four and moved to eight. You might have picked up on that if you read the article.

‘Russia 2018 where Socceroos where virtually no chance of marking next round by Peru game which is boring’

Yes! Because we were a hopeless barren disaster that did not deserve to make the next stage! How can you justify a circumstance being ‘boring’ because Australia simply weren’t good enough?

‘Ever think why UEFA expanded to 24, and allowing 3rd place getters a chance to make next round? Coz it’s about money and tv ratings and more fans will stay interested in the tournament even if a bit of mediocrity is rewarded’

I’m aware that more teams = more money. But, once again, if you read and understood the article you’d know that’s not what I’m concerned with.

Correct, more fans will stay interested longer if they have a greater chance of progression towards the end of the group stage. But that’s exactly the problem I picked up on during Euro 2016; it’s as if the first two games don’t even matter (especially if you bottled them) knowing that just one win could be enough for progression.

The reason why I was heavily in favour of the 16-team format was because virtually every game had weight to it, as little filler as possible. And when you’ve gone from a nine month club season straight into an international tournament, you want to get to the point as quickly as possible.

How UEFA softened the European Championships

‘Only four 3rd place sides make the round of 16, the other four go home’

What ‘other four’ are you referring to exactly? Four out of SIX third place teams progress to the knockout rounds, only TWO are eliminated!

This is called rewarding mediocrity.

And Australia finished 2nd in the group at the 2019 Asian Cup.

How UEFA softened the European Championships

You’ve completely missed the point of the article.

‘Smaller teams’ isn’t a problem. Like I said, I enjoyed seeing the likes of Wales and Iceland excel.

It’s the fact that the 24 team format includes this 3rd place rule which renders far too many of the group stage games meaningless.

What you end up with is a drawn out tournament with an excess of dead rubber matches between teams given too easy of a chance at progressing to the knockout rounds.

I repeat – wake me up when the group stage ends.

How UEFA softened the European Championships

Cheers Peter.

It’s amazing to see how the club has transformed from the start of the decade to the end. From Blackpool doing the double over us in 2010/11 to the Champions League!

The top ten Liverpool signings of the decade: Part 6

Players only.

The top ten Liverpool signings of the decade: Part 6

Cheers mate. I guess I’ll have to try to persuade you when I finish writing up #1!

The top ten Liverpool signings of the decade: Part 5

Cheers Peter.

No denying there’s not much secret in who’ll be near the top; you only have to look at Liverpool’s recent success to have a clue. But who knows, you might be surprised with who gets #1.

The top ten Liverpool signings of the decade: Part 2

100%, he bossed it.

Aaron Mooy assists match-winner as Brighton downs Arsenal