Retro Recap: Aimar Schools Torres, Atletico Madrid vs Valencia CF

Our journey through the 2003/04 season continues. Having taken a look at Barcelona and Real Madrid it’s now time to take stock of Spain’s third power. No, not Atletico but Valencia! Because in the early 2000s Los Che likely came closest to break up the duell of Barca and Real. With Rafa Benitez on the sidelines Valencia had claimed La Liga in 2001/02. In Europe too they had come mighty close… What would 2003/04 hold in store?

Some further reading:

Retro Recap: Real Madrid’s 7-2 Demolition of Valladolid

Our romp through the 2003/04 season continues. After checking in on Ronaldinho at Barca we’re crossing the Clasico divide. A certain David Beckham had joined the Galacticos party in the summer of 2003. Los Blancos had already picked up their first silverware of the season (the Spanish Super Cup) and were hosting Valladolid on the third matchday of the season.

Some further reading:

The full match is available on footballia, highlights below:

Retro Recap: Ronaldinho’s Home Debut for Barca vs Sevilla

In the summer of 2003 a bucktoothed Brazilian took Barcelona by storm. His name: Ronaldo de Assis Moreira, or rather just Ronaldinho. For our latest Retro Recap we’re taking a look at his home debut, played on September 3rd 2003. Barcelona hosted Sevilla.

Further reading as mentioned in the episode:

The full match is available over at footballia, Ronaldinho’s goal below:

Snoozefest Or Defensive Master Class? w/ Laura Bradburn

What happens when an immovable object meets another immovable object? Well we found out just that having re-watched the Champions League final 2002/03. An All-Italian affair, contested between Juventus and Milan, one could have expected a rather tepid offensive output. Beauty however is in the eye of the beholder and so we honed in on the defensive genius of Maldini, Gattuso & Co.

Trying to help us make sense of the state of calcio around ’02/03 was Laura Bradburn. Check out her blog The Counter Press and follow her on Twitter.

Minutes after the jump: Continue reading

Decoding the World Cup 1930 with Dean Lockyer

On July 30th 1930 Uruguay won the first ever World Cup. In the final held at Estadio Centenario in Montevideo they beat Argentina 4:2. Of that we can be certain. But how much of what we read and hear about the World Cup 1930 should we take at face value?

Dean Lockyer has spent several years battling this very question. On his blog he digs through newspaper archives, memoirs, photographs, and every other bit of information covering the World Cup 1930. Fortunately for us he came onto the show to help us decode the story of the tournament.

Topics include, but are not limited to: King Carol II of Romania and his involvement in selecting the squad; foreign born players featuring for the USA; Argentina’s Luis Monti receiving death threats; crowd trouble in Montevideo and Buenos Aires. Of course we talk extensively about the football on display as well. We also weave in and out of the broader issue of seperating fact from fiction.

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Nottingham Forest vs BFC Dynamo, European Cup 1979/80 Quarter-final

The winter of 1979/80 had left the pitch at City Ground in a dire state. And it had left Nottingham Forest chasing the leading pack of the First Division. As March 1980 rolled around Forest sat in eighth, twelve points off the pace Liverpool had set. But they still had the European Cup to defend.

Under the guidance of Brian Clough Forest won the coveted trophy in ‘78/79 beating Malmö FF in the final. Their ‘79/80 campaign had started promisingly enough. Picking up three wins in their first three matches Forest were leading the league in September. Come November Forest started bleeding goals. Trips to The Dell, The Baseball Ground, Selhurst Park and Old Trafford all proved fatal. Southampton and Derby each put four past Peter Shilton. Manchester United helped themselves to three goals while Crystal Palace needed just the one to keep the points in South London.

Nottingham Forest look towards Europe

By boxing day Nottingham Forest were out of the title chase. Sitting in tenth even the drop loomed ominously. Well, at least it was closer than the top of the table. Alas Forest were able to turn their attention towards Europe. As holders of the European Cup they met Barcelona who had picked up the Cup Winners Cup the season prior. At stake: the 1979 European Super Cup. A glitch in the scheduling matrix saw the sides vie for the trophy in January and February of 1980 with Forest running out victors in a 2:1 aggregate win. Continue reading