The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Messi, Hamburg and Sacchi

This week’s football review section marvels at Leo Messi, sympathises with Hamburg fans and is saddened at former Italian national team manager Arrigo Sacchi’s comments. To help with understanding you can find explanations of key vocabulary in bold below.
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This week’s football review: Leo Messi, Hamburg and Sacchi

Good

Leo Messi played his 300th league match for Barcelona at the weekend against Levante and marked the occasion with a hat-trick – the 23rd of his career. He has now scored a remarkable 269 goals in his La Liga career with 26 of those coming this season. Although he still finds himself two behind Ronaldo in the race for this season’s leading scorer award (the Pichichi) in Spain, the Argentinian superstar appears back to his best as Barcelona continue their upward surge.

Bad

A really bad weekend for German side Hamburg after they were demolished 0-8 by Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich. 3-0 down at half-time the northern German side collapsed in the second half which left Hamburg coach Josef Zinnbauer having to apologise to fans after yet another drubbing at the hands of Munich – they were thrashed 9-2 a couple of seasons ago. They currently lie in 13th place but are only 2 points from safety so it will be interesting to see how they react to this defeat over the next couple of weeks.

Ugly

Former Italian national team manager Arrigo Sacchi has had to defend himself against claims of racism after he had suggested that there were too many black players at youth level in Italian football. Hardly the most enlightened of comments from Sacchi, who also managed Milan and Parma during his managerial career.

Vocabulary

marked the occasion: celebrated

Pichichi: The annual award for the top scorer in Spanish football

continue their upward surge: They are unbeaten in many matches and their form has improved in recent times

they were demolished 0-8: They lost heavily 0-8 (thrashed)

drubbing: A heavy defeat (a thrashing)

at the hands of: Against; versus

enlightened: Liberal, open or progressive

managerial: The adjective form of manager

 

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