Tottenham make the Champions League group stage, an ugly melee spoils the Copa Libertadores final and trouble at Liverpool. These stories and more feature in this week’s the Good, the Bad and the Ugly, which can be heard on our weekly podcast. Vocabulary support can be found for the words in bold at the foot of the post.
Tottenham completed a remarkable comeback against Swiss side Young Boys this week to qualify for the group stage of the Champions League. Spurs last played in the European Cup in 1962 when they reached the semi-finals but getting out of the group would be deemed a success this time round. Peter Crouch was the hero this week with a hat-trick but young Welsh star Gareth Bale assisted in all four of the goals. Spurs face holders Inter Milan, Dutch champions Twente and German side Werder Bremen in the group stages – do they dare to dream?
Bad for Liverpool, who were humbled at new kids on the block, Manchester City, 3-0. This despite Torres and Gerrard both starting. The Merseyside club never looked comfortable and were picked off by a strong-looking City side. That leaves the Reds 17th with one point out of a possible six. To add to their problems, Liverpool still haven’t found new owners and look no nearer doing so, and they also have Mascherano angling for a move to Barcelona. The Argentinian midfielder refused to play in the game against The Blues, angering fans who had been impressed by his performance the week before against Arsenal. There is one bright spot for Liverpool, however, as they are through to the group stages of the Europa League after winning 2-1 despite going behind away at Turkish side Trabzorspor.
Brazilian side Internacional won the Copa Libertadores final last week by defeating Mexican side Guadalajara 5-3 on aggregate in a stormy affair. At the end of the game Mexican players were involved in a fight with players from Internacional but the police intervened very quickly. The Mexican players felt they had been provoked by the Brazilians and complained about the lack of security at the stadium. An ugly end to a great competition. See the highlights of the goals here
remarkable : Amazing
to qualify for:: To progress to the next stage of the competition
would be deemed a success: Would be seen as a success
would be deemed a success: Three goals in one game by one player
Spurs face holders Inter Milan: Spurs will play against the current champions Inter Milan
new kids on the block: a new team, a fresh face, in this context a team that has joined the big teams as title contenders
to pick off: to calmly wait for a scoring opportunity and then attack and score
to angle for (something): to attempt to get, to try to get something
Copa Libertadores: The main club competition for teams in South America (equivalent to the Champions League)
by defeating: By beating (another team)
on aggregate: In total – there are two games (legs) and the scores are added up, this is the aggregate
stormy affair: An aggressive game, a tempestuous match
intervened: Stepped in, they wished to prevent any more trouble