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Rapid can win the league, if they’ll manage to finish it!

October 26, 2010 1 comment

George Copos and Rapid have high hopes for a club with such a low level of professionalism!

Second place in the league, impressive displays especially at home, biggest chances to win the league according to the bookies. This is Rapid? Well, yes, but not exactly. The club’s problems are bigger than the lack of consistency when playing away, the poor quality of their strikers or the increasing tensions from a dressing room full of players who (think thay they) deserve a place in the first eleven, especially in goal. They surfaced in the press this morning and speak not only of the already mentioned financial troubles, but also of some poor management from the board and a lack of professionalism that had been experienced in the past, at Rapid.

Here’s the list of problems that could affect the team’s performances and results sooner or later:

  • the players haven’t been payed for more than two months and were hoping to see some cash after last round’s away win at Sportul; instead, they got yet another promise that this will happen after the derby against Steaua. Which is scheduled almost two weeks from now.
  • Brazilian striker Cassio Vargas and the team’s second scorer this season was thrown out of his appartment, as the club failed to pay the rent since August. He was moved with his wife and two kids to another flat, close to his team mates Rui Duarte, Ezequias, Marcos Antonio and Bozovic, where he should follow Rui Duarte’s example, who didn’t wait for the club to pay the rent, as he would have found himself in the same delicate situation as the striker…
  • The Portuguese Candido da Costa had the surprise to find his appartment without gas and electricity, problems that angered so much Vladimir Bozovic last season that the Montenegro international left Bucharest and threatened not to return at the club.

“I have to feed my family. I was supposed to send money back home, to Portugal, but I haven’t done that for the past two and a half months” – Rui Duarte, Portuguese full back, bought from FC Brasov this summer

As this is no premiere, Rapid should look beyond the expected financial trouble, which affects pretty much every Liga I club this season, and realize that there’s something wrong in the structure and the work of what was supposed to be one of the best organized professional clubs in Romania. The club’s owner, George Copos, loves to point to the board lead by Dinu Gheorghe everytime something goes bad and has a habit of complaining about the difficulties of running a club these days. Still, he was the one to accept in the first place last summer’s overspending and he was the one to jump for joy at Rapid’s wonderful displays from the start of the season. Staying on the sidelines and waiting for your employees to fail just to say “I told you so” at one point doesn’t look very smart to me. In fact, makes Rapid look like a ticking bomb, watched carefully by a sadistic, self-destructive owner…

Dorinel Munteanu feels inspired by Felix Magath and Christoph Daum

October 20, 2010 Leave a comment

He doesn’t want to be called “Mister”, he prefers his nickname. From the top of the league, Munti explained today, in an interview for http://www.evz.ro, what’s the secret behind Otelul’s perfect start of the season. Here are the most important quotes:

Approach: “I like to work with Romanian players, they can get my messages and ideas clearly, and this has turned things around for me, after a poor start. And this is an excellent group, considering that there were times when the players were unpaid for months, yet they kept on training and playing.”

Training: “Modern football means determination. I ask my players to work their socks off in training and, after fitness, we try to be very organized on the pitch. At a higher level, the players’ quality makes the difference, but in Liga I mentality is key. And we managed to earn this first spot even if we played three or four times with just ten men.”

Objectives: “My goal is to finish better than we did last season, when we missed a place in Europa League for just two points.”

Inspiration: “I continue to learn as a coach and I’m inspired by Magath and Daum, whom I call every once in a while to discuss things. I believe German football is a model to follow in every aspect, that’s why I brought a popular system in 1. Bundesliga 5 years ago at CFR Cluj, when everyone was shocked that I field three forwards in every game.”

After 11 rounds, Otelul is topping the league with 25 points, thanks to an excellent home record of six wins out of six games. Munti’s players also got two valuable results away from home, a 0-0 against the mighty Rapid and a 2-1 success, two rounds ago, against Dinamo.

Round 11 – results, scorers, standings and highlights

October 18, 2010 Leave a comment
  • Unirea Urziceni – Gaz Metan Medias 0-1 (Todea 90)

Interesting tactical battle between two defensive squads, built to counter, but as I was expecting, Unirea starts to lose all the points, with their focus on defending the initial draw in every game, no matter the opponent’s name. All credit must go to Gaz Metan’s excellent coach Cristi Pustai (I know, I’m repeating myself), who pushed for the win with all his changes and the instructions for a positive and brave approach. The discrete performance from the Brazilian Eric, who’s refusing to extend his deal and, sooner or later, he’ll refuse to play at the same level, which would be a shame, was compensated by another solid performance from the two central midfielders, Hoban and Todea, with the captain bringing the third away win of the season for a really tough team to beat.

  • Rapid – Astra Ploiesti 3-0 (Cassio 34, 36, Spadacio 42)

The break didn’t affect the most solid and spectacular team in the league and Rapid dominated with authority against a difficult opponent, who lost its first match under Tibor Selymes. Cassio Vargas added his third brace of the season, but must share an eventual bonus with his team-mates, having the chance to play in a team that brings the ball in the box with pace, skill and flair, through the excellent work of the central pair Spadacio – used deeper than usual – and Lazar, as well as the quality service provided by the wide men. Read more…

Round 10 – results, scorers, standings and highlights

October 15, 2010 Leave a comment
  • Astra Ploiesti – Pandurii Targu Jiu 2-0 (Patrascu 7, Fatai 74)
  • Universitatea Craiova – Universitatea Cluj 3-0 (Dina 5, Iliev 11, Wobay 54)
  • Dinamo – Otelul Galati 1-2 (C. Munteanu 71 / Salagean 45, S. Ilie 74)
  • Gloria Bistrita – Unirea Urziceni 0-0
  • Poli Timisoara – Rapid 2-1 (Zicu 28, 86 / Cesinha 25)
  • Gaz Metan Medias – FC Vaslui 0-0
  • CFR Cluj – FC Brasov 4-0 (R. Bastos 18, Cadu 36 pen, Traore 49, De Zerbi 73)
  • Steaua – Sportul Studentesc 4-2 (B. Stancu 5, 42, Patrascu 31 og, Bilasco 67 / Varga 3, 90 pen)
  • Victoria Branesti – FCM Targu Mures 0-0

Next round (15-18th of October): Unirea Urziceni – Gaz Metan, Rapid – Astra Ploiesti, FC Vaslui – CFR Cluj, FCM Targu Mures – Poli Timisoara, Pandurii Targu Jiu – Sportul Studentesc, Otelul Galati – Gloria Bistrita, Dinamo – Steaua, Universitatea Cluj – Victoria Branesti, FC Brasov – Universitatea Craiova.

Ciprian Marica thinks about retirement. Stuttgart’s fans have no reason to celebrate: it’s about the national team

October 11, 2010 Leave a comment

(In)famous agents Ioan and Victor Becali decided to change tactics before the game in France, refusing to comment regarding the national team and especially its coach, Razvan Lucescu. They knew that Mircea’s son had little chances to come out with a win, so “Le Bleus” were going to give them a hand in changing this stubborn coach, who refuses to acknowledge their influence and picks his team on his own.

Marica is too good to sit on the bench. And wants out, not in!

It was one of their clients who spoiled this decent plan, as Ciprian Marica needed just a couple of training sessions to realize that he was going to start the match on the bench, in spite of his outstanding scoring record of one goal in almost 800 minutes played for the national team, under Lucescu Jr. On Friday, Victor Becali appeared on tv and spoke about his client’s thoughts to stop playing for Romania. Marica himself refused to use these words, but stated his discontent, saying that “The coach favors other players”, still hoping that this kind of pressure might change Lucescu’s plans. It didn’t, but the young coach showed enough diplomacy to send Marica on the pitch in the second half. Read more…

This is Romania!

October 11, 2010 1 comment

Desperate to keep a clean sheet. Trained to destroy, not to build. Hoping for a lucky counter or a well taken free kick. This is Romania. At any level. From the senior national team to the Under 0. We have it in our genes and we’re not making the smallest effort to change our mentality. And you can see it at club level. Where we’re defending. Destroying. Hoping for the counter-attacks that bring once in a lifetime 2-0 wins on Olimpico. And we still wonder why we have slim chances to see Romania at a final tournament in this lifetime…

 

Romania's U21, a team used to sit back and wait. And has been waiting for a final tournament since 1998!

 

For those not very familiar with the team in yellow, the weekend was looking promising on Friday evening, when Romania faced England, in front of a packed stadium in Norwich. Sandoi’s eleven that featured one keeper, five natural defenders and five natural midfielders, was trying to switch from a 4-5-1 to a 4-3-3, as the team got hold of possession, being probably the first in the world to try and use three forwards, without having at least one on the field! Read more…

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