Same Old Same Old

It is that time of the year when you see these banners and posters popping up in the most weirdest of places. From music concerts, other sporting events, election campaigns, weddings and even at college photos.The WengerOut poster is everywhere. But i just can’t understand why the fans would hate and want to see their most successful Manager to be sacked. One must remember that he is the same person that managed 2003-04 Invincible’s. So why is they hate the person that have given them 3 premiere leagues and 6 Fa cups along with other trophies.

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 For almost 21 years Wenger have been managing the club. Like everyone he had his highs and lows. Not only the trophies he was also the person responsible for their relocation to Emirates stadium. Through these hurdles he was able to carry the team and compete for the league and in Europe but usually with very limited success. His team made it into champions League for 17 straight years, something the other teams in the league are not able to match during this period. But even after making into the competition Arsenal usually fell short, at the round of 16 to be precise ( 7 consecutive time). The same can be said about premiere league. After their memorable season where they never lost , his side was never able to lift the league trophy again. They seems to be more of a top 4 contender rather than the title chasers.

Arsene Wenger’s system can be partly blamed for this. His style of play is more fluid and attacking. His team plays a really beautiful and stylish attacking game. On their day they can take down any team and do so in style. But when things don’t go as planned, his side crumbles. One main fault that is seen is his sides inability to adapt. This is a reason I guess why Arsenal often fail to win when they play against tougher opponents. His teams seem inefficient to cope with such challenges and he needs to give fresh breath into them. Lately we can see him sporting a 3 man defense rather than a 4 man back. This can be taken as a good sign.

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Finally not all can be his fault. In my opinions there are few issues that seems to pop up every now and then with the Arsenal.

Injury

We all know the Arsenal performance chart. They start season very well with many wins and being at top of table.Then it becomes slower, with few draws into the mix. October to November brings with it injuries. Most main players gets injured and are sidelined. This is the time they do bad and falls from top of the table. By the beginning of new year the team tries desperately to be in the title race on the same time gets knocked out of the champions league to. At the end they win a few matches and finish strong and usually within top 4. What is evident from this is that the moment the injuries occur their performance gets affected. This is a point of concern for the team especially its medical staff. They can look into their existing medical system to ensure that there are no problems there. Faster rehabilitation and recovery of players is a must along side avoiding those silly injuries.

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Leader

Look at any great team, you will always find that they all have one thing in common – a Leader.  A leader may not be the captain of a team, he is someone who brings the team together.  Arsenal of the present lacks such a personality. Even if they have great players showing leadership qualities you can’t quite pick one up. This lack of central role, who can motivate its players on field , pick them up from problems and keeps his team together till the end is what i thing something Arsenal must address.

Inconsistent Strike Force

Arsenal is a team that loves attacking. Their style of playing gets them more goals rather than clean sheets. But the present squad lacks that extra aggressive edge which can provide them with goals. Apart from Sanchez none of them are consistent enough. The team clearly lacks a proper central forward. Oliver Giroud is a good player, but he is highly inconsistent. You often find him in the bench rather than in the team sheet. Same is the case for Danny Welbeck and Lucas Perez. All of them are also injury prone and often miss out many games. Hence a proper No 9 is a priority for  arsenal and Wenger if they plan to be more of a contenders in the future.

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SO WHAT NEXT

With Wenger’s future still unclear one can only speculate. With Champions LEague almost impossible next season the team and the manager must really work to impress their fans.

European Contest

Even though Champions league may be something out of their hand , Arsenal must be happier about it. I guess Europa League can be a blessing in disguise for them. Arsenal might be a smaller team who often have to punch above their weight in the Champions league, Europa its a whole other picture. The competition is softer and the Gunners would be a sure favorite to win them. Wenger could redeem himself if he will be able to deliver the club a European title. Also for Arsenal it can be a good platform to prepare for their future endeavors.

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Getting transfers right

Come this summer Arsene Wenger and his team is under lot of scrutiny. He must loosen his purse strings to sign good talents rather than ‘ ALMOST’ signing them. Some areas where i think he must bring in reinforcement and possible candidates are

Striker

Strengthening arsenals attack is a must. With possibility of Sanchez leaving the team , they should find a replacement for him. A like for like switch with Bayern for Douglas Costa is something that can be done, if the rumors about Bayern interest is true. Whatever the outcome be they must spend big to bring a great central forward who can deliver goals week in week out. Since Champions league is almost out of option his chance to bring a big goal scorer is hard. Aubameyang, Lewandowski, Griezmen are hence something he can forget. Mbappe is a great prospect, but attention from other big clubs almost makes it hard for Arsenal to sign him, but i believe Mbappe can get better if he choose a club like Arsenal where he is assured a start in almost all their match rather than going to a club where he might have to warm the bench more. Alexander Lacazette is someone linked to Arsenal in the past though the contract never happened. The french will be a good option for arsenal especially after his performance in Europa League this season where he is the joint top scorer.

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But a better option for Arsenal would be to sign someone who is more acclimatized to the league. Lukaku who might rejoin Chelsea is an option but a better one would be Leicesters Jamie Vardy. The England international have proved his ability in the League for his country and even in the Champions league. His pace, ability and experience may be what Arsenal really wants at the moment.

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Defense

The defense seems to be tighter with the addition of Mustafi last summer but they should not say no good young prospects. The main issue at the back would be Left back position. Nacho Monreal is not young anymore. Finding a good replacement is a must especially because the present option is Kieran Gibbs who is highly inconsistent and injury prone. A name that keeps coming up is of the Schalke left back Sead Kolasinac. The Bosnian is out of contract at the end of the season and will be a bargain buy if Arsene can bring him in to his camp. With interest shown from Chelsea and Juventus it is not going to be easy.

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Midfield

 This is some place where Arsenal must think harder. Even though they have great players like Ramsey , Cazorla. Xhaka, Elneny and Coquelin they some how seems to get lost once Cazorla gets injured. Xhaka though a great player often get suspended. Ramsey is too much inconsistent and Elneny is not that impressive . I guess this is where Arsenal must find someone who can keep the midfield together .

 Tiemoue Bakayoko, the Monaco central midfielder is a great option. He can give the stability and physicality that Arsenal wants.

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Another option would be Grzegorz Krychowiak. The former Sevilla player is no one new to the Europa league, winning it twice with them. His transfer to PSG though was not fruitful as the Polish international is not a regular choice for Unai Emery. His experience and physical strength might be what Arsenal just wants.

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Apart from these options a move to bring back Fabregas may be welcomed. With the former Gunner not starting most of the match under Conte in Chelsea and with a possibility of new signings by them in summer Fabregas may be doubtful as a regular starter for Chelsea. This can be used as an option bring him back to the Emirates.

So by bringing in good reinforcements, holding on their assets and trying to do better in Europa league ( if they didn’t make it to Champions league)  Arsene Wenger could redeem himself and help to mold Arsenal as a major Powerhouse of both England and Europe – A place where they rightly belong.

 

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Whats up with Bayern?

My view on whats going around in European football.

 The record German champions are arguably one of the best football clubs present in the world at the moment.With 5 champions league trophy and other titles they have a very rich history to back their present success stories too. Bayern Munich side represent one of the most prolific attacking side and are often revered by opponents who have to face them. Bavarian easily are a great representation of their National side.

 But recent seasons, especially post Heynckes (2011-13), the team seems to have a slight dip in their potency. Pep Guardiola, who took charge after Heynckes, was considered to be the one of the best managers in the business was quiet not able to resonate the same success he had at Barcelona. Pep era saw Bayern fail in the semifinals of Champions league 3 consecutive years and all of them to Spanish opponents. Having failed to deliver in Europe’s highest competition Guardiola leave the club in end of 2015-16 season and was followed up by Carlo Ancelotti. Having previously won the Champions league as a manager with 3 champions league title with 2 different clubs, the hopes where high for Munich to even win the competition in his very first tenure as the clubs manager. Yet, the club again stumbled as it faced Real Madrid in the quarter finals and bowed down for a 6-3 aggregate failing in both legs. Even if the game had many controversial refereeing decisions gone against them, Bayern was not quiet able to silence their opponents as they had many a times before. To consider that a team which had humbled the Barcelona for a 7-0 aggregate in the same competition few seasons ago, the continuous loss to Spanish side in the competition is a cause for worry. A closer look can reveal some of the problems the German giants are facing.

  • Domestic Competitions

Bundesliga is one of the best leagues in Europe with the likes of many successful clubs like Schalke, Werder Bremen, Monchengladbach etc. But for past few years it have been Bayern at the top and Dortmund trying to catch up with them. Klopp’s Dortmund was a force that have taken many titles from the hands of Bayern and is its biggest rival. But in the recent times they have been highly inconsistent and are not able to put up serious competition both in domestic league as well as in the cup matches regularly. This lack of competition have backfired for Bayern. What was supposed to be a boon turned out to be problem after all. This reduced competition have actually mellowed down the Bavarian side. With clubs like Wolfsburg challenging titles but are not able to keep this over multiple seasons and with Dortmund facing injury trouble and its inefficiency to hold on to major players during transfer window have made them not able to give Bayern a healthy competition. This reduced resistance in the domestic league becomes a great menace when they face tougher opponents in Europe.bundesliga_favorites-620x347-1415714314

  • Aging Camp

Bayern have some great experienced p[layers in the likes of Lahm, Alonso, Robben and Ribery . They bring with this experience coolness and composure in the game. but the aging players also means slower legs. Alonso for an example is sitting way deeper compared to his earlier positioning, and the explosive runs from Ribery and Robben are also lacking that potency and that dash of speed.With Lahm and Alonso hanging up their boots at the end of season it becomes vital for the club to find suitable substitutions. 17992210_1477716998966036_2275311974747587046_n

  • Tricky Transfers

While football has seen the big clubs spending pile of money for bringing in new players to the team, Bayern seems to step down a bit. Transfers made often seems to be from the Bundesliga itself. This reduces the competition within the league and also the club lacks players with external exposure. Gotze, Lewandowski are great examples of Bayern buying players from their local competition itself.  While clubs are buying proven players for a quick and easy fix, Bayern is tending to lag behind in this.hi-res-71c5a61bc66abd702386c3918c66000a_crop_north

  • Attacking Dilemma

Bayern has great players like Robben,Ribery,Muller,Lewandowski,Douglas Costa who are excellent when it comes to attacking. But a closer look reveals that Lewandowski might be the only proper central striker in the team. Muller who can be termed as an attacking all rounder but lack that clinical nature and physicality of a proper central forward. He has also been out of form in this season hence not being able to regularly find a position in Ancelotti’s starting lineup. To make matter worse lately we have seen a higher dependence on the number 9, Lewandowski , with him having scored almost 17 goals more than the next Bayern player in Bundesliga this season. The problem gets evident especially when Lewandowski misses matches due to injuries and Bayern dips in their form.The first leg of quarter final of Champions league this season was a great example for this, when Bayern was not able to capitalize lots of chances they created because Lewandowski was missing due to an injury .Lack of an alternate central forward is hence a lingering problem of Bayern which they must confront in the future.Lewandowski-Müller-Champions-League-1000x667

Whats in store for Ancelotti

With this seasons European dream ended, and the Bundesliga title just few wins  away, Ancelotti and men must focus on the next season. Replacing Lahm and Alonso, strengthening the squad, keeping their major players and finding and incorporating young stars to their lineup must be the priority. Above all Bayern must bounce back to their former glory and get back their killer instinct that made them a serious contender for being the Europe’s best. Having proved his ability in numerous occasion Ancelotti will be the best man for that job.

How things change over a trip?

It was almost the end of March. The summer sun was at its scorching highs and i was off to my interview at NIT, Trichy. Being a part of Tamil Nadu, at first i was not sure whether to go there at all. But that trip sort of changed my attitude towards that place.

Tamil Nadu is our closest neighbour. For many years now, there is an inborn grudge, a feeling of hatred inside most of us Mallus. we somehow considered the people of Tamil Nadu as uncultured ,uneducated and most importantly filthy people with serious lack in personal and public cleanliness. We the mallus usually have this mindset inside us even from quite a young age. And when i had to go there all alone, it truly shed new light on the life at Tamil Nadu.

Yes I have to admit its far more hotter than my place (Kerala). Its a really hot plate which sort of turns your skin a few tones darker. Even though the place seemed similar to ours with vast areas of coconut trees, banana plantains, and hectors of paddy field, it pointed out more as a hotter place. May be it was due to the dried desert like plants there or may be it was because of the lizard green tint the leaves had.Farming seemed to be the major activity around. apart from the rice, grass for the cattle, sugar cane,tomato, mangoes and many other vegetables. All this in a hot place like this showed how hardworking and intelligent the people here are.

The next thing i noticed during the trip was number of factories. It actually felt like there was one every 10km . These factories ranged from small scale producers to large industries mostly textile mills and cement factories.Adding this to the farming showed me that i was entirely wrong. these guys are not have much more opportunity to earn an income than other state people. turning on to education i could easily spot a college or school every where i turned. Engineering colleges seems to top the list with infrastructure my college could only dream for. this just proved my theory of Tamilian lacking education into dust.

Yes education and employment are important, but for a human his values and culture is much more valued than his degree and income.And Tamilians aced this one to. They have very high mutual respect to everyone and their love for their language is infinite. spotting another language in any of the bill boards or notice was nearly impossible and they never regret that. For a traveler its a hard task to navigate through the place. The common  Tamilian is a simple person who loved  everyone. Simple example to show this is when to Keralites travel its hard for them to speak with each other, but when a Tamilian hear Tamil, he becomes ecstatic and joins with his. They are also really down-to-earth. one instance came while i was in the train when a fruit vendor was really tired and one of the fellow passenger  gave her place, helped her and started having a conversation. To help someone so strange and poor showed how simple and loving these people are.

Almost forgot to tell you guys about the roads and infrastructure. The roads were great. it was usable and in pretty good condition to. The National Highways were extremely comforting to move through.The people here usually lived in very small houses and they never showboated. Unlike the multi-storied buildings the houses were very small with only 2 or 3 rooms. The way of life too was simpler and people never went for a flamboyant lifestyle.

As a whole the trip totally removed many myths of mine.One can find faults in them by showing their very old lifestyle, lack of cleanliness, but all these are excuses we find so that we dont need to admit they are better than us. I guess its maybe their rudimentary lifestyle that make them a better human being. Rather than us, they are not self centered and are more close to the nature.and all that i thought of them before was may be my mind trying to hide this very fact that they are better. With this new knowledge about my neighbors the trip ended and i am sure i wont look at them the same way again.

FootBallFever

Its the Middle of football season and the time when the picture starts to be clear. like many i am also addicted to football,an addiction from a long time ago when i first saw World cup (2002). That game between Brazil and Germany that really sealed the deal. The time passed and it grew older and stronger with me. Now its spread across various leagues from my own countries league (ISL) to German Bundesliga.

Even that was not enough, that when my friend told me about Fantasy premiere League(FPL) . Its my own league where i manage my own team and play with others worldwide to see who is best. Frankly, if you don’t know FPL there is no point in reading further

So i thought why not write abdownloadout FPL and my suggestions for each game week. When i started it i was lost for the first few weeks and had to play catch-up with my more experiencedfriends. Any new FPL managers out there “this one’s for you”

Golden rules( at least for me)

  • Do not pick teams according to your interest.For god sake even if its virtual you are a manager act like one. If your favorite player is struggling bench him or sell him. You are here to win and act professional
  • Use your transfers wisely. Do not use up your transfer unnecessarily. wait till the day before the game.check the Scout option( or My BLOG 😛 ). waiting can help you avoid last minute injuries( trust me on this one)
  • Transfer your injured player fast. When a player gets injured or is unavailable for the match there is a good chance he will be losing his value. The more value you lose the less money for your next purchase.
  • Mix up the team with strong expensive players and cheap yet scoring ones. this ensures a good balance as well as help you be inside the budget.God knows sometimes the cheap ones gives you the most.                                                                      Fantasy-Premier-League
  • Wildcard– You get 2 chances of playing wildcard,before winter and after winter, use it if only its important like you have multiple injured player or your current squad is not consistent enough.I have seen many who played wildcard too early end up having a weaker squad later.Its always preferable to play the wild card between game weeks 9-12 and 28-31
  • Use of chips must be done carefully– The chips must be played if you have a good strong squad that can give you maximum points. Wait for a few weeks to play them and do not rush it.
  • Go with you gut. If you feel the player will give you golds go with him,make him the captain. Its.Its often such decisions that push you two steps forward.

 

 

That Final Year Dilemma

Its my final year at college .Just an year more for graduation( at least I hope I can get it done by then).So its that time most of us have faced. Its all about confusion. The constant work to fill in our heads with the answer of “What will happen after this?”

To be frank I am stuck .I was always that kid who never actually had any particular interest.I was like the jack of all trades but king of non. When I talk to most of my friends I realise with great terror that they have figured it out already. They either have this passion they want to pursue or they have this dream job they want to work for.Then there is me……… who just want to grab a bite ,watch some tv and just relax

I am from a place where you can say if you throw a stone to a crowd you a very good chance of hitting an engineer.If your an Indian you know what I am talking about. Its like every family here have one. Roughly 1.5 million engineer graduates pass out of college every year.Its a needle in the haystack scenario. And yet the so called society wants you to get a job, be successfull, blah ,blah ,blah

So to sum it up….am not that good in academics….I don’t have any serious passions…and to make it worse I am from this society where getting a job after graduation is mandatory.BUT i know for a fact there are people like me out there who knows what i am telling. I know am not alone…am I???

This is the time for not only me but many other students(especially Indian engineering students) who are under this tremendous pressure which has been building up in our head from our first day of school till today like boiling water in pressure cooker….its hard…at least for me…..either I can go off to some distant land far away…travel explore  and live the life care free…..or I have the choice of getting a job ,support my family,my father who have burned all his youth just so we can be happy ….. its hard…I don’t want to disappoint my dad,my mom, my family …..meanwhile  I don’t want my life to be just stuck in this boring circle which is just gonna drive me insaneUncertainty-Road-Highway-Two-Lanes-Splitting-600x399

I hope I can clear out my confusions and be happy. Whatever the future holds for me I know I can face it ,look at me I am doing engineering can it get worse than this :), until then I gonna enjoy my last year at college….peace out friends

Childhood wonder makes a comeback

Dinosaurs….well the first thing that come to my mind when i hear about it is the Jurassic park….. This Spielberg wonder always gave me goosebumps and was one of the best things that happened to me at childhood. all those fears of big monstrous creatures coming back to hunt us…..it was one of the best days…. all the 3 movies ,even though the third was a bit weak, always made my eyes  glued to the TV…

More than a decade later There comes a new addition to the series…..Jurassic World

Firstly i have to give it to Colin Trevorrow…well he took on a Spielberg movie and made a sequel of it…not to mention he didn’t disappointed us…for me the movie was a good and simple one. excellent casting and not to mention the graphics. I would easily recommend anyone to go out this weekend without a doubt for it.ydln1orxqd4neeasubooChris Pratt ,the guy from the Guardians of the Galaxy,well he sure leave a mark on us. But i have to say the Raptors steel the show. The one little problem was the 3D factor which does not give as much as we expect. The movie is as good in 2D as in 3D .Overall a good movie and i would give a solid 7/10 just because it reminded me of the original