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Episode 268: Argentina are off to Russia. It was never in doubt

12 Oct

The two hundred and sixty-eighth episode of Hand Of Pod sees Sam, Peter and Andrés discuss Argentina’s qualification for the Russia 2018 World Cup, in spite of a 0-0 draw at home to Peru last Thursday and owing rather more to a hat trick from Lionel Messi in Quito which brought a 3-1 win away to Ecuador on Tuesday, in the last match of the campaign. What comes next, what needs to be tweaked, and what should remain the same are all up for discussion.

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Last week, Dan beat Sam in the World Cup qualifying predict-off. This week, Mystic Gav takes Sam on at predicting the next round of Superliga action.

Gav
Lanús v Unión
San Lorenzo v Defensa y Justicia
Colón v Temperley
Central v Argentinos
Estudiantes v Banfield
Vélez v Newell’s
Racing v Tigre
Chacarita v Independiente
Godoy Cruz v Gimnasia
Belgrano v Talleres
River v Atl. Tucumán
Patronato v Boca
Olimpo v Huracán
Arsenal v San Martín

Sam
Lanús v Unión
San Lorenzo v Defensa y Justicia
Colón v Temperley
Central v Argentinos
Estudiantes v Banfield
Vélez v Newell’s
Racing v Tigre
Chacarita v Independiente
Godoy Cruz v Gimnasia
Belgrano v Talleres
River v Atl. Tucumán
Patronato v Boca
Olimpo v Huracán
Arsenal v San Martín

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Episode 266: Boca still lead the way, Banfield impress and an all-Argentine Libertadores semi

28 Sep

The two hundred and sixty-sixth episode of Hand Of Pod sees Sam and Andrés look back on a weekend during which River Plate dropped league points for the first time this season to leave Boca Juniors as the only team with a 100% record after four matches. There were impressive wins for Banfield and Colón, who aren’t far behind the top two, and we look at a poor week for Estudiantes and San Lorenzo, who played one another on Monday evening. There’s also a brief look forward to an all-Argentine Copa Libertadores semi-final, after River’s thrashing last Thursday of Jorge Wilstermann in their quarter-final second leg, and Lanús’ penalty shootout win over San Lorenzo.

You can subscribe to Hand Of Pod on iTunesStitcher or TuneIn, and follow us on Twitter.

Last week, Mystic Sam beat Mystic Liam 5-3 in the prediction battle. This week, Mystic Chris is the challenger.

Chris
Defensa y Justicia v Huracán
Unión v Olimpo
Atlético Tucumán v Belgrano
San Lorenzo v Colón
Temperley v Estudiantes
Gimnasia v Lanús
Argentinos v Racing
Talleres v Patronato
San Martín v Central
Independiente v Vélez
Boca v Chacarita
Tigre v River
Banfield v Arsenal
Newell’s v Godoy Cruz

Sam
Defensa y Justicia v Huracán
Unión v Olimpo
Atlético Tucumán v Belgrano
San Lorenzo v Colón
Temperley v Estudiantes
Gimnasia v Lanús
Argentinos v Racing
Talleres v Patronato
San Martín v Central
Independiente v Vélez
Boca v Chacarita
Tigre v River
Banfield v Arsenal
Newell’s v Godoy Cruz

Episode 265: River and Boca set the early pace, and national team news

21 Sep

The two hundred and sixty-fifth episode of Hand Of Pod sees Sam and Andrés discuss a weekend of league action in which River Plate and champions Boca Juniors continue to be the two teams to beat in the Superliga, even as River slumped last week to first leg defeat in the Copa Libertadores away to Jorge Wilstermann of Bolivia. There’s also talk of Jorge Sampaoli’s latest national team list (call-ups have gone out to players based abroad for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Peru and Ecuador), and a change of venue for the Peru match to La Bombonera. As well as all this, Independiente’s Alexis Zárate (currently on loan at Temperley, perhaps not for much longer) has been found guilty of rape, and there’s some discussion of that verdict and the media reaction in Argentina.

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Twitter didn’t show the first two matches of Liam’s screenshot predictions (from which Sam was reading the fixtures for the Mystical section), so the first two games in the lists below didn’t get read out, but here for the record are all the predictions for this weekend:

Mystic Sam’s fourth round predictions (last week he got 7/14)
Belgrano v Tigre
Patronato v Atl. Tucumán
Huracán v Unión
Arsenal v Temperley
Chacarita v Talleres
Vélez v Boca
Godoy Cruz v Independiente
Colón v Defensa y Justicia
Olimpo v Gimnasia
Central v Banfield
River v Argentinos
Racing v San Martín
Lanús v Newell’s
Estudiantes v San Lorenzo

Mystic Liam’s predictions
Belgrano v Tigre
Patronato v Atl. Tucumán
Huracán v Unión
Arsenal v Temperley
Chacarita v Talleres
Vélez v Boca
Godoy Cruz v Independiente
Colón v Defensa y Justicia
Olimpo v Gimnasia
Central v Banfield
River v Argentinos
Racing v San Martín
Lanús v Newell’s
Estudiantes v San Lorenzo

Episode 264: Wrapping up the second weekend, and more national team talk

14 Sep

In the two hundred and sixty-fourth episode of Hand Of Pod, Sam, English Dan and Andrés are joined by Julián for his second appearance, around two and a half years after his first. We look back on a second weekend of Superliga action which saw wins for River and Boca, a 4-1 tonking of Temperley by Racing, and – shock, horror – a goalless draw between Rosario Central and San Lorenzo. Last week’s national team talk has sparked something of a discussion among our Twitter followers, so we address that in the second half, along with a look at why the national team are moving to La Bombonera for the upcoming World Cup qualifier against Peru.

You can subscribe to Hand Of Pod on iTunesStitcher or TuneIn, and follow us on Twitter.

Mystic Sam’s third round predictions (last week he got 3/14)
Tigre v Patronato
Colón v Estudiantes
Argentinos v Belgrano
Defensa y Justicia v Unión
Newell’s v Olimpo
San Lorenzo v Arsenal
Independiente v Lanús
Talleres v Vélez
Atl. Tucumán v Chacarita
Banfield v Racing
Boca v Godoy Cruz
San Martín v River
Gimnasia v Huracán
Temperley v Central

Episode 263: The new season’s started! Someone tell the national team

8 Sep

Hand Of Pod returns from an extended winter break, and in episode 263 Sam is joined by English Dan and Andrés to run the rule over Argentina’s latest two disappointing World Cup qualifying performances. What went wrong against Uruguay and Venezuela? Is the problem solely tactical or are there, in fact, not really any of the right options even available for selection in the midfield? These are just two of the question we ask. In the second half, we take a very brief look at how the Superliga season began two weeks ago, in an opening round Sam didn’t see and which Andrés and Dan have mostly forgotten. Don’t worry, we’ll be back up to full speed next week.

You can subscribe to Hand Of Pod on iTunesStitcher or TuneIn, and follow us on Twitter.

Mystic Sam’s second round predictions
Arsenal v Colón
Vélez v Atl. Tucumán
Olimpo v Independiente
Belgrano v San Martín
Estudiantes v Defensa y Justicia
Patronato v Argentinos Juniors
Racing v Temperley
Chacarita Juniors v Tigre
Godoy Cruz v Talleres
Rosario Central v San Lorenzo
River Plate v Banfield
Lanús v Boca Juniors
Unión v Gimnasia
Huracán v Newell’s Old Boys

Episode 262: Reviewing Boca’s title win, and some end of season tidying-up

29 Jun

The two hundred and sixty-second episode of Hand Of Pod sees Sam and Andrés bid farewell to a memorable 2016-17 season which ended with Boca Juniors crowned champions of Argentina for the thirty-second time, and with Sarmiento, Atlético de Rafaela, Quilmes and Aldosivi being relegated. Sam takes you through the ins and outs of Copa Libertadores and Sudamericana qualification (still pending, because the Copa Argentina final isn’t until the end of the year), and we discuss what made Boca worthy champions, what some of the other clubs will be thinking of their seasons, and our players of the season, including Sam’s Domestic Argentina Squad, which you’ll find on the HOP blogpost accompanying this episode. This is our last episode for a couple of months – we’ll be back when Sam returns from his holidays, probably at the start of September.

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Sam’s domestic Argentina squad of the season

Goalkeepers: Esteban Andrada (Lanús); Jorge Broun (Colón); Gabriel Arias (Defensa y Justicia); Alexis Arias (Gimnasia)

Defenders: Leonel Di Plácido (Atl. Tucumán); José Luis Gómez (Lanús); Alexander Barboza (Defensa y Justicia); Guillermo Ortíz (Colón); Jonatan Maidana (River Plate); Jonathan Silva (Boca Juniors); Nicolás Tagliafico (Independiente)

Midfielders: Iván Marcone (Lanús); Marcos Acuña (Racing); Gonzalo Martínez (River); Fernando Gago (Boca); Ignacio Fernández (River); Facundo Quignón (Newell’s Old Boys); Emanuel Reynoso (Talleres); Emiliano Rigoni (Independiente); Ricardo Centurión (Boca)

Forwards: Cristian Pavón (Boca); Darío Benedetto (Boca); Sebastián Driussi (River); Lucas Alario (River); Gustavo Bou (Racing)

Episode 261: Reviewing Sampaoli’s start for Argentina, and gearing up for the title run-in

16 Jun

In the two hundred and sixty-first episode of Hand Of Pod, Sam and Andrés look back on Jorge Sampaoli’s first two matches as Argentina manager, which ended in two victories, seven goals scored and none conceded – although one was a lot closer as a contest than the other. We also cast our eyes forwards towards his competitive debut at the end of August, where they’ll be no margin for error. As well as this, we’ve a title run-in to consider, with this weekend’s matches followed almost immediately by a round in midweek; by the time we next record, Boca Juniors could very well be champions.

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In round 27, Mystic Sam got 3/15. This week, Mystic Chris takes him on …
Mystic Sam
Colón v San Lorenzo
San Martín v Temperley
Huracán v Unión
Talleres v Gimnasia
Banfield v Central
Arsenal v Godoy Cruz
Estudiantes v Belgrano
Atl. Rafaela v Quilmes
Aldosivi v Boca
Vélez v Sarmiento
Newell’s v Lanús
Patronato v Tigre
Independiente v Olimpo
DyJ v Atl. Tucumán
River v Racing

Mystic Chris
Colón v San Lorenzo
San Martín v Temperley
Huracán v Unión
Talleres v Gimnasia
Banfield v Central
Arsenal v Godoy Cruz
Estudiantes v Belgrano
Atl. Rafaela v Quilmes
Aldosivi v Boca
Vélez v Sarmiento
Newell’s v Lanús
Patronato v Tigre
Independiente v Olimpo
DyJ v Atl. Tucumán
River v Racing