In the forty-third episode of Hand Of Pod, Sam, Dan, Dan and Seba begin with a look at Juan Sebastián Verón’s stand against Estudiantes’ barra brava, who on Monday caused their match with Banfield to be abandoned after only thirteen minutes. We then move on to talk about Boca Juniors’ 0-0 draw with Racing on Sunday, a result that edges Boca a tiny bit closer to the league title, and Racing striker Teo Gutiérrez’s idiocy in getting himself sent off, and the effect it’s likely to have on Racing’s squad for the rest of the season. Sam mentions River Plate’s first ever competitive match in Patagonia (a 4-1 win away to Guillermo Brown of Puerto Madryn), we talk about San Lorenzo’s woes as they change managers, and after Mystic Dan’s predictions we close with a discussion of media bias towards the two giants, and especially Boca.
Julio Grondona was named Argentine FA President for another four years as we recorded this episode, a development slightly more inevitable than the sun rising tomorrow. Sam, Seba, Dan and Dan look into the reasons behind FIFA Vice-President Grondona’s grip on Argentine football (by 2015 he’ll have been AFA President for 36 years), and why a hidden camera sting which caught him boasting about bribes and much more the day before the elections had no effect. We also run the rule over Lucas Ocampos, River Plate’s 17-year-old star who’s reportedly wanted by Chelsea, consider Boca Juniors’ options in replacing injured forward Lucas Viatri, and look at Independiente’s slowly improving form, before embarrassing ourselves by trying to list, off the tops of our heads, every football club whose stadium lies within the City of Buenos Aires.
In episode 36 of Hand Of Pod, Sam, Dan, Dan and Seba are joined by Asli Pellit and her lovely new (and very quiet) dog Vinicius. We discuss Asli’s trips to Córdoba and Porto Alegre, on the latter of which she met and interviewed Andrés D’Alessandro, as well as the reasons Brazil’s championship is better off than Argentina’s at present. We look back on the Avellaneda clásico on Sunday which saw a 1-1 draw between Racing and Independiente, and argue about whether it’s a boring league season or not. As well as this, Aussie Dan and Sam consider Ferro v River last Saturday, and we look forward to the start of the South American World Cup Qualifiers, which will be more competitive than ever this time round. Enjoy.
This week’s Hand Of Pod is a sensible length, so rejoice! Sam, Australian Dan and Seba meet again, and there are plenty of hot topics to get through. Santiago Silva has left Vélez Sarsfield for Fiorentina, seriously damaging the champions’ title defence. We discuss the relative economic strengths of the Argentine league with Europe (and Brazil), a listener asks why Estudiantes are so rubbish, we admire Racing’s tenacity under Diego Simeone, and talk about the return of visiting fans to the second division (Nacional B) after Independiente Rivadavia’s president forced the AFA’s hand in his club’s match against River Plate at the weekend. There’s also a call for your feedback on the pod (please send suggestions to sam [at] hastaelgolsiempre [dot] com), and a mention for an excellent new(ish) online football magazine, Man And Ball, whose second issue includes an Argentina-inspired piece of fiction.
As usual, Mystic Dan’s fourth round predictions are below. And don’t forget, you can subscribe to us on iTunes if you just can’t bear to visit this blog in order to get your weekly fix.
The twenty-ninth episode of Hand Of Pod is, as the milkmaid said to the parson, quite a whopper. That’s largely because Sam, Australian Dan and Seba have not one but two rounds of Torneo Apertura matches to look back on, as well as River Plate’s historic debut in the Nacional B (second division). There’s more, though; before we can even get onto that, we’ve got – like those Apertura rounds – not one but two Argentina squads to discuss, with Alejandro Sabella having named both a full national team and a domestically-based side to take on Brazil. Carlos Tevez’s exclusion from the former, Juan Román Riquelme’s and Seba Verón’s inclusion in the latter, the new boys’ early performances in the Primera and the start of Vélez Sarsfield’s title defence; all this and much more is covered. And next week’s will be a more sensible length. We promise.
Hand Of Pod’s two resident Racing fans are both on holiday this week, but Sam and Australian Dan are battling on, insistent that their partners’ absence is but a flesh wound, and are joined by the one and only Joel Richards, who does a sterling job of patching the bleeding. On the menu is a discussion of practically every team in the Primera División this season, as well as the AFA’s U-turn on last week’s planned expansion of the top flight to 38 teams, Alejandro Sabella’s appointment as Argentina manager, the unveiling (at last!) of the Best Argentine Abroad of 2010-11 according to our listeners, and more.
Mystic Dan’s predictions are back for the new season, and are as ever below the ‘Continue reading’ line. We’ve also got a juicy video of Marcos Angeleri for the ladies, and a video to Sam’s best friend’s latest YouTube uploads. Nick Ball is the composer of the HOP theme tune as well as a professional musician, composer and producer, and has recently put up a few videos demonstrating techniques from 1910s and ’20s ragtime drumming. It seems only fair that we help spread the word, not least because most of our listeners seem to prefer the music to the actual pod…
In the fourth episode of Hand Of Pod, Sam, Dan and Dan discuss the denouement of the Argentine season, which will be played out between now and Monday night in the final two rounds of the Torneo Apertura. We also take a look back at the first leg of Independiente’s Copa Sudamericana final against Goiás, and you’ll hear our considered response to the announcement of the Argentina squad for the South American Under 20 championships, which will be played in Peru in January. You can listen or download right here, or of course subscribe to us on iTunes. Enjoy.
The theme music, as ever, is composed, performed and produced by Nick Ball.