Episode 242: Teo gonna Teo, River slump and Estudiantes still lead

24 Nov

The two hundred and forty-second episode of Hand Of Pod brings together Sam and Andrés to talk about a weekend in which the football was overshadowed in many press pages by Teo Gutiérrez once again being Teo Gutiérrez. The Rosario Central forward was sent off for his goal celebration during a 1-1 draw in La Bombonera. Elsewhere, River Plate lost 1-0 away to Newell’s Old Boys, and there are rumours beginning that Marcelo Gallardo could leave the club if he fails to bring home the Copa Argentina (the semi-finals of which will be played next week). Estudiantes still lead the league, and have found a replacement for injured goalkeeper Mariano Andújar at last, while the relegation situation is beginning to clarify a little even with twenty games still to go (we’re sticking our necks out now and saying Atlético de Rafaela will go down). There’s also news about the television rights negotiations.

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Mystic Michael’s eleventh round predictions (last week Mystic Chris got 4/14)
Temperley v Lanús
Talleres v Arsenal
Colón v Newell’s
Tigre v Quilmes
Banfield v Estudiantes
Atl. Tucumán v Belgrano
Rosario Central v Olimpo
River v Huracán
Aldosivi v Vélez
Sarmiento v Godoy Cruz
San Lorenzo v Boca
Racing v Independiente
Defensa y Justicia v Patronato
Gimnasia v Unión
San Martín v Atl. Rafaela

Episode 241: We are six! From despair to relief for Argentina, and returning to league action

18 Nov

The two hundred and forty-first episode of Hand Of Pod sees Sam and Andrés celebrate the podcast’s sixth birthday by discussing two Argentina matches; last Thursday’s awful defeat to Brazil in Belo Horizonte, and Tuesday’s much-improved win over Colombia in San Juan. Does the national team need a clearout? If so, who should be the new names coming in? We also round up some of the main stories from the last week, including Argentinos Juniors arguing with River Plate over youth recruitment, and suggestions that Argentina’s next World Cup qualifier, at home to Chile in March, could be played at La Bombonera. Oh, and there’s a return to league action this weekend to look forward to.

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Mystic Chris’s round 10 predictions (two weeks ago Mystic Hugh got 5/15)
Arsenal v Banfield
Estudiantes v Colón
Godoy Cruz v Tigre
Lanús v Atl. Tucumán
Unión v Temperley
Huracán v Racing
Quilmes v Aldosivi
Belgrano v Sarmiento
Independiente v San Lorenzo
Boca v Central
Atl. Rafaela v Talleres
Newell’s v River
Olimpo v Gimnasia
Patronato v San Martín

Episode 240: Boca finally win away, and previewing Brazil v Argentina

10 Nov

In the two hundred and fortieth episode of Hand Of Pod, Sam and Andrés discuss a weekend of Primera action in which River Plate improved somewhat from recent showings to draw with top of the league Estudiantes, and Boca Juniors won away in the league for the first time since February. There was also an impressive win for Racing against Newell’s Old Boys, while Independiente dominated but still couldn’t score against Rosario Central. The main course of this week’s podcast is of course a preview of Argentina’s World Cup qualifier away to Brazil in Belo Horizonte on Thursday night, with a switch to 4-4-2 and the return to Lionel Messi the main talking points in the Argentine camp.

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Episode 239: Estudiantes continue to impress, and River’s defence continues to disappoint

3 Nov

In the two hundred and thirty-ninth episode of Hand Of Pod, Sam and Andrés discuss the main talking points from last weekend’s Primera División action, including yet another three points for an Estudiantes side who continue to lead the league, and yet more goals conceded for River Plate, who threw away a 2-0 lead against the worst team in the Primera to draw 2-2. There’s also a look at Boca Juniors’ demolition of Temperley and San Lorenzo reserves’ very entertaining 2-2 draw away to second-placed Newell’s Old Boys, ahead of the first team’s Copa Sudamericana semi-final first leg, which kicked off seconds before we finished recording. As well as all this, we consider what grounds the Bolivian football federation have for appealing the sanction that, on Tuesday, resulted in Chile being handed a 3-0 walkover which leapfrogged them above Argentina in the World Cup qualifying table.

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Mystic Hugh’s ninth round predictions (last week Mystic Chris got 4/15):
Temperley v Olimpo
Quilmes v Godoy Cruz
River v Estudiantes
Sarmiento v Lanús
Colón
v Arsenal
Racing v Newell’s
San Martín v Vélez
Banfield v Atl. Rafaela
San Lorenzo v Huracán
Tigre v Belgrano
Talleres v Patronato
Central v Independiente
Gimnasia v Boca
Aldosivi v Defensa y Justicia
Atl. Tucumán v Unión

Episode 238: Estudiantes stay top, Newell’s end their Central hoodoo and more

26 Oct

In the two hundred and thirty-eighth episode of Hand Of Pod, Sam, English Dan and Tony are joined by Tony’s flatmate Jorge to discuss a weekend of action which saw Estudiantes win the big top of the table clash away to San Lorenzo, and Newell’s Old Boys end their eight year run without a win against bitter rivals Rosario Central. We also saw a rare clean sheet for River Plate, yet another away game without a win for Boca Juniors, and a club vice president asking to feel some balls, among plenty more.

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Mystic Chris’s round eight predictions (last week Mystic Sam got 6/15)
Patronato v Banfield
Belgano v Quilmes
Estudiantes v Racing
Independiente v Gimnasia
Vélez v Talleres
Godoy Cruz v Aldosivi
Arsenal v River
Olimpo v Atl. Tucumán
Boca v Temperley
Huracán v Central
Lanús v Tigre
Newell’s v San Lorenzo
Defensa y Justicia v San Martín
Unión v Sarmiento

Episode 237: Tearing up the formbook, and yet more AFA nonsense

20 Oct

The two hundred and thirty-seventh episode of Hand Of Pod sees Sam and Andrés convene on a rainy evening in Buenos Aires to discuss a weekend in which a storm blew through the Argentine formbook: three previously unbeaten members of the Big Five lost for the first time this season, as did Colón – who also conceded for the first time in this campaign. Estudiantes’ defence was finally breached as well, although they managed to win anyway in a wildly entertaining 3-2 romp over Rosario Central, whilst Boca Juniors and San Lorenzo both made clear their title ambitions are for real with wins of their own. Off the pitch there’s yet more chaos at the AFA, with people accusing other people of failing to comply by FIFA directives in spite of a) the people in question having been put in place by FIFA and b) the directives in question being NINE YEARS OLD. There’s never a dull moment in the world of Argentine football administration…

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Mystic Sam’s seventh round predictions (last week Mystic Peter got 4/15)
Sarmiento v Olimpo
Talleres v Defensa y Justicia
Quilmes v Lanús
Godoy Cruz v Belgrano
Temperley v Independiente
Colón v Patronato
Racing v Arsenal
River v Atl. Rafaela
Gimnasia v Huracán
Banfield v Vélez
Central v Newell’s
Tigre v Unión
San Lorenzo v Estudiantes
Atl. Tucumán v Boca
Aldosivi v San Martín

Episode 236: What is wrong with Argentina?

13 Oct

The two hundred and thirty-sixth episode of Hand Of Pod sees Sam and Peter convene to discuss the recent World Cup qualifying double-header: like the midfield on Tuesday night in Córdoba, there’s not an Argentine in sight. We give our thoughts on two bafflingly below-par performances which saw Argentina gain just one point and lose a home World Cup qualifier for the fourth time ever, consider which names we would (and wouldn’t) like to see in the national team setup, and more. And at the end, Peter provides his predictions of what will happen in this weekend’s Primera matches, because Sam forgot to ask any listeners to do the same.

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Mystic Peter’s sixth round predictions (two weeks ago Mystic Liam got 8/15)
Defensa y Justicia v Banfield
Belgrano v Aldosivi
Vélez v Colón
Atl. Rafaela v Racing
Huracán v Temperley
Estudiantes v Central
San Martín v Talleres
Independiente v Atl. Tucumán
Lanús v Godoy Cruz
Olimpo v Tigre
Boca v Sarmiento
Newell’s v Gimnasia
Arsenal v San Lorenzo
Patronato v River
Unión v Quilmes