EPL: Day 33, Part 2 and elsewhere in Europe

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Football
April 12th, 2004 • 4:42 am

Wow. Quite a few upsets this week-end. After drawing against Middlesborough at home on Saturday, Chelsea have just lost at Villa Park 2-3 to Aston Villa — and it was no accident, with Villa confirming their rather excellent form this season (even without their star striker Angel) and Chelsea confirming that they are not nearly as threatening as they might appear on paper.

Then Liverpool has just lost at home against Charlton, and, more than the defeat against Arsenal on Friday, this will surely be a major blow for Houillier and seriously reduce the chances that he’ll still be Liverpool’s manager next season. Portsmouth managed their first win in a while and are not condemned to relegation just yet. And Middlesborough, just like Villa, are confirming their good form this season with a comprehensive win 3-1 over Southampton. The race for the European spots is far from over!

Meanwhile, Real Madrid are beaten at home 0-3 by lowly Osasuna and are overtaken by Valencia in the league! And in France, Monaco draw, Paris SG come back from 0-1 behind with 10 men away from home against Nice’s 11 and manage a 2-1 win that brings them right back in contention for the French title, with Lyon winning unimpressively 1-0 against my home team Strasbourg.

Phew. It’s looking increasingly good for the Gunners in England (they are 7 points ahead with a game in hand, and only need three victories in their last 6 games to be guaranteed to win the title), but the millionaires in Spain and in London are not so far from a crisis situation… Monaco are being stretched thin with their involvement in the Champions’ League, but you wouldn’t necessarily bet against them achievement something special in the semi-finals in the next three weeks.

For Arsenal fans, the only negative thing about all this is that it confirms that these semi-finals and even the final itself were really within reach. Oh well. Next year, maybe.

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