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Barstool’s Weekend Soccer Preview – The “In With a Bang, Out With a Whimper” Edition

Sam’s Soccer Safe Space For Stoolies – Weekend Preview & Pick’em

1-EPL

Hi haters,

So here we are. One weekend left. (Not really since we still got competitions like the FA Cup, Champions League and NIT+ Tourney to wrap, but never mind those for the moment.) Only one way to send the season off in style:

2-zlatan

Only a living god would be humble enough to call himself a legend. Respect.

Anyway, as incredible (for many reasons) as this season has been, I’m not going to lie to you, this is the second year in a row that much of the drama has been sucked dry from the final matchday in the previous weeks. Leicester have lifted the trophy and all the relegation spots have been spoken for. Thankfully there is still plenty to get your knickers in a twist about, not least of which being the fight for the fourth all-important Champions League slot. Then of course there is the life or death struggle to avoid Sunday being St Totteringham’s Day.

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So yeah, I’d say there’s still some stuff worth watching this weekend. Thus, without further ado, let’s get to it.

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ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE

Reminder of the weekend and midweek that were:

4-EPLresults

How about United. Pretty awful season by all accounts and yet there they were with a top four finish so close they could almost touch it, especially after taking a 2-1 lead at West Ham on Tuesday. Then things all fell to shit with a quickness. The loss not only keeps the Hammer’s itsy bitsy chances of slipping into fourth alive, but it more importantly put City firmly back in control of its own destiny. Derp derp.

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As it stands, with one game to play the table looks like this:

6-EPLtable

All 10 games are being played in parallel this weekend and the National Broadcasting Company, bless their hearts, are showing every one of them live. Here is the slate with where you will be able to find each of the matchups:

7-EPLschedule

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PICKS OF THE WEEK

NBC decided the game of the week is…

Swansea (+550)
City (-200)
Draw (+350)

A win (and likely a draw) would be enough for City to assure themselves – and incoming manager Pep Guardiola – of a place in next season’s Champions League, which you’d think would be no sweat against a Swansea club that has absolutely nothing to play for. However, the Swans have been schizophrenic lately, rolling over and dying against Newcastle and Leicester in consecutive matches, then turn around and beating Liverpool and West Ham in its last two. Add to that the fact that the Sky Blues will be missing Vincent Kompany and David Silva due to injury and this could be a serious dangerous game for the visitors.

My mind is saying “draw, draw, draw, you dummy – it’s going to be a DRAW!” but then again my brain thought there’d be no way Leicester would keep winning sooooo, yep. So instead I’ll say Pellegrini’s boys will find a late winner from Aguero. City to win 2-1.

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Newcastle (+340)
Tottenham (-130)
Draw (+300)

This may be the saddest sack soccer game in history. Spurs fell short of trying to catch mighty Leicester. Newcastle fell short of trying to climb out of the relegation zone. The only thing on the line is Tottenham’s desire to finish as the King of the North and thus avoid St Totteringham’s Day in eons.

Spurs limp into this weekend’s game on the back of multiple disappointing performances, including the inexplicable loss to West Brom and last second concession to settle for a draw against Chelsea. The club has suddenly strayed from its cool, calm and collected approach in the last few weeks as well, with Dele Alli and Mousa Dembele now suspended for petty off the ball “incidents”.

Toon has looked better in recent weeks, showing some heart for the first time all season, but it was too little too late.

As a Spurs fan, am I scared? You are godamned right I am. It would only make too much sense for Tottenham to find a way to finish its most impressive season in my lifetime by losing to a relegated squad and kicking me directly in the dick one last time… but in the end I think an early goal will kill whatever thin layer of desire Newcastle is going to muster. Tottenham to win 2-0.

KING OF THE NORTH!

KING OF THE NORTH!

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• Who is winning the Aston Villa Lottery™ this week? Oh, great, it’s none other than Arsenal. As mentioned above, the Gunners could jump Tottenham with a win against Villa if the Spurs find a way to lose, which obviously is not at all out of the realm of possibility. Arsenal to win 4-0.

• After a heartbreaking loss to West Ham in the midweek, United [-275] has to regroup and win for any chance at the top four finish the Red Devils, and especially its accountants, are in desperate need of (though, to be fair, the club just reported quarterly revenues of $317 million… so I think they’re gonna be iiiiiiight). Bournemouth [+700] has had a fantastic season, having already assured themselves of a more-than-respectable mid-table finish, and – as the odds indicate – the Cherries have absolutely nothing to play for in this one. United to win 2-0. Not enough for Champions League, but enough for LVG to keep his job?

jose

• Speaking of motivation, it has apparently been in short supply at Crystal Palace [+800] ever since Rebecca Lowe announced she was pregnant last fall. What a way to wrap up what has been a lost season for the Eagles but with a whimper against a Southampton [-300] squad that – don’t look now but – has been the hottest club in the league for the last month. Southampton to win 3-1.

• West Ham [+110] still have a faint hope of snagging the last Champions League slot. Alas, the clock will strike midnight (metaphorically) and this hope will turn into a pumpkin if they do anything other than win this weekend. Stoke [+240] to win 3-2.

• Hahahahahaha, how perfect is it that Leicester [+200] come into the final game of the season – a season in which they consistently beat clubs with more money and “better players” – as underdogs against Chelsea [+125]? If that’s not the perfect equation for me to lose money betting against the mighty Foxes, I just don’t know what is. For old time’s sake: Chelsea to win 2-1. Not even sure what I’m waiting for. Might as well give my money to the bookie right now.

Godamit Claudio

Godamit Claudio

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WYNALDA’S WEEKLY WITTICISM

This week brought us an absolutely classic Wynalda move:

– send nonsensical tweet that nobody understands
– rather than explain himself, refuse on multiple occasions to explain what he means
– even implying that people questioning him about it are the morons

Quintessential dildo move. Gotta love it.

(Note: must be read from bottom to top)

11-Wynalda

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LA LIGA

Barrrrrrthe came into today one point ahead of Real, with each club playing away against Granada and Deportivo, respectively. Both clubs are taking care of business as we speak, meaning that the Catalans would raise the trophy. No real surprise there.

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Disappointing finish to the domestic season for Real (not to mention their neighbors Atleti), but needless to say all is not lost for either at this point…

Coming soon (May 28) to a TV near you

Coming soon (May 28) to a TV near you

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REST OF WORLD

Bundesliga: Bayern won. Shocker.

Serie A: Juventus won. Shocker.

MLS: The craziness in Columbus looks to have been brought to a close with Kei Kamara’s trade to the Revolution. It’ll be interesting to see how that works out for both clubs. Just a ridiculous situation all around.

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So there you have it. Quite a season. Where Leicester goes from here is going to be worth watching closely. Europa and Champions Leagues have yet to be decided, and it will soon be time to get serious about the EURO 2016 and Copa America tournaments. For the time being…….

One last important reminder for you:
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Holler,
Sam U. L. Army