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Blog - Marcotti's Musings

Questioning FIFA's TV rights decision

World Cup
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Barcelona claim Clasico points; Man United see off Gerrard and Liverpool

ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno examines Luis Suarez's world-class performance against Real Madrid in El Clasico.

Maybe you can distill it down to some kind of scientific axiom: the greater the number of individual superstars on the pitch, the greater the chance that a moment of genius, magic or what you might otherwise call unaccountable skill will be the difference between the two.

Barcelona and Real Madrid both had spells in which they enjoyed the upper hand in Sunday's Clasico, but only the Catalans had Luis Suarez and the move he pulled 10 minutes into the second half.

The former Liverpool striker ghosted...

Tired Chelsea, Ibrahimovic's rant, Van Gaal's discovery, Bale-Ronaldo, more

Our football experts weigh in on whether or not anyone can challenge Chelsea for the Premier League title.

Chelsea have two wins in six games, following the 1-1 home draw with Southampton, and the fact that their lead at the top of the Premier League table -- courtesy of Manchester City's defeat at Burnley -- has increased to six points is not down to them.

With such a margin and a game in hand, it would take a cataclysm for Jose Mourinho not to win his third league title at Stamford Bridge. With the League Cup already in the bag, it's a successful campaign for the "Special One."

Yet it also might be...

Real Madrid president Florentino Perez is not learning from his mistakes

ESPN FC's Gab Marcotti discusses the relationship between Real Madrid president Florentino Perez and manager Carlo Ancelotti.
ESPN FC's Gab Marcotti discuss the fallout from Real Madrid's 4-3 loss against Schalke in the UEFA Champions League.
The ESPN FC crew analyse Real Madrid's chances of retaining the Champions League trophy following their second-leg loss to Schalke.
ESPN FC's Gab Marcotti and Alejandro Moreno discuss whether or not Carlo Ancelotti would have lost his job if Real Madrid were knocked out of the Champions League by Schalke.
Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti says his side fully deserved to be booed off the pitch following Wednesday's 4-3 defeat to Schalke, despite 'Los Blancos' progressing to the UEFA Champions League quarterfinals on aggregate.

You've probably heard this before: "Those who don't know their history are condemned to repeat it."

You wonder whether Florentino Perez has. On Tuesday night his expensively assembled Real Madrid team was booed off the pitch at the Bernabeu, following a 4-3 home defeat to Schalke. It was the club's second straight loss (after the 1-0 setback against Athletic Bilbao, which cost them top spot in La Liga) and it marked only the second time in history that Real had conceded four goals at the Bernabeu...

Barcelona take a big edge in La Liga's title race, Lyon rebound in style, more

ESPN FC's Gab Marcotti examines the pressure that Real Madrid's Carlo Ancelotti is facing after conceding the top spot to Barcelona in La Liga.

OK, so it's official. Lionel Messi has eclipsed his league goal total from last season (28) with Sunday's hat trick against Rayo Vallecano, which took him up to 30 in La Liga. His tally of 41 in all competitions means that he has already matched last year's total, and we still have two months and change to go.

More importantly, beyond the "Messi-sphere," the 6-1 drubbing of Rayo Vallecano allowed Barcelona to leapfrog Real Madrid (who were beaten the day before) into first place. With the clasico...

Petr Cech and Chelsea stay loyal to each other as circumstances change

The ESPN FC panel discuss Chelsea's slim victory over Everton and why Jose Mourinho dropped Thibaut Courtois in favour of Petr Cech.
Cech would be a fine addition at Real Madrid but a move doesn't make sense... does it?
Petr Cech has started 13 games this season for Chelsea, including just five in the Premier League.

On Wednesday, the British media was full of reports that Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho won't stand in Petr Cech's way should the Czech goalkeeper decide to move elsewhere at the end of the season.

"I don't think Petr is a guy to be persuaded [to stay]," Mourinho said. "I will just wait, wishing his decision is to stay. But I don't waste my time trying to persuade him. If he tells me he wants to leave I will tell him my opinion, that he is one of the three best goalkeepers in the world, so huge money."

Nobody...

Zouma impresses for Chelsea, Real Madrid slip, Man City's season fades

ESPN FC's Paul Mariner and Mark Donaldson preview West Ham's midweek fixture against Chelsea at Upton Park.
The ESPN FC panel highlight Chelsea manager, Jose Mourinho's defensive tactics as being the key elements to his side's victory over Tottenham in the Capital One Cup final.
Congratulations to Chelsea, the first team to win the League Cup and the Premier League on the same day!

Chelsea have lost three games all season, and it's not a coincidence that Nemanja Matic was absent for two of them. Thus, it must have been with some trepidation that manager Jose Mourinho approached the Capital One Cup final against Tottenham, not least because, in addition to the midfielder's suspension, John Obi Mikel, his other defensive stopper, was sidelined.

Matic is arguably Chelsea's most important player in terms of what is lost when he's not around. Thibaut Courtois has Petr Cech (and...