Colin McGowan - Soccer Analysis

Real Madrid Finally Reaches A Point Of Harsh Self-Assessment

by Colin McGowan

Mar 4, 2019 2:41 PM

The advantage of being the biggest club in the world is that when all else fails, you can afford to be spectacularly unsubtle, remake the shape of an entire squad in the span of a single summer. Read more »

Tags: Real Madrid

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The Presence Or Absence Of Imagination

by Colin McGowan

Feb 21, 2019 5:12 PM

In the end, the most important aspect of style is having one, to look like you're trying to do something a specific way, and succeeding. Liverpool and Atleti had styles in their UCL matches this week against Bayern and Juventus. Read more »

Tags: Atlético Madrid, Bayern Munich, Juventus, Liverpool, IQ

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The Fundamental, Unavoidable Problem Of VAR

by Colin McGowan

Jan 30, 2019 5:23 PM

VAR is exhausting and the on-pitch litigating has only intensified, because the players don’t know (or don’t care) what’s supposed to be reviewable and not. Read more »

Tags: Real Madrid, IQ, Video

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Liverpool Has Become The World's Most Stylish Team

by Colin McGowan

It's satisfying when a plan comes together at a big club like Liverpool because it's a broad canvas finally being utilized properly. Read more »
Atleti's Confused Identity

by Colin McGowan

Diego Simeone has a team that could soar, given a little more liberty, with a few new ideas. He's either reluctant to provide what they need because he's holding fast to some fading identity the club no longer embodies. Read more »
End-To-End Stuff: Christian Pulisic

by Colin McGowan

Christian Pulisic's career is still firmly in its developmental phase, and he's a star only in terms of the attention he gets from folks who are eager for the USMNT to finally have a world-class player. Read more »
End-To-End Stuff: Gareth Bale

by Colin McGowan

Gareth Bale exists in the two states: recovering from a calf injury and on the verge of a pulled hamstring. He's somehow been somehow invisible at the biggest club in the world, but that's changed with Ronaldo leaving for Italy. Read more »
End-To-End Stuff: Cristiano Ronaldo

by Colin McGowan

We often ask athletes that they build their lives around the game they play, because we feel that if they're not doing everything in their power to play well, we're somehow being robbed of their potential. Ronaldo is one of the few players who clears that ridiculous bar and he still occasionally catches flak, because he's doing it for selfish reasons. Read more »
End-To-End Stuff: Mauro Icardi

by Colin McGowan

There are rare instances when a player develops an institutional bond with his club. Mauro Icardi appears to have one with Inter, having joined back in 2012 and stuck around through some lean years and now they're back on the upswing. Read more »
End-To-End-Stuff: Thomas Partey

by Colin McGowan

Thomas Partey, coming off a great season, has arrived in Atleti's midfield. Now he has to arrive again, repeatedly, in order to keep hold of what he's got. Read more »
End-To-End Stuff: Paul Pogba

by Colin McGowan

If the Pogba-Mourinho relationship is to be mended, Pogba must be the one who bends. He's well within his rights refuse, which is why cataclysm at United looks increasingly certain. Read more »
End-To-End Stuff: Lionel Messi

by Colin McGowan

Barcelona has built a muscular team around Lionel Messi that aims to devastate rather than transcend. Now 31, it's about time to take the measure of thes arc his career has traveled, and where it's headed. Read more »
End-To-End Stuff: Mohamed Salah

by Colin McGowan

Mo Salah had a breakthrough year. How are we to describe what he is coming out the other side of that? It calls out for a name, or at least a couple of adjectives. Read more »
End-To-End Stuff: David De Gea

by Colin McGowan

United's back line- good, but shaky; organized imperfectly- did us a favor last season in (accidentally) letting David de Gea cook with the club's league-best goals conceded tally standing as evidence of his brilliance. Read more »
End-To-End Stuff: N'Golo Kante

by Colin McGowan

We tend to feel grateful toward athletes who redraw the game's parameters for us, help us appreciate what we previously couldn't. We sometimes call them geniuses: a title Kante would definitely reject, but might deserve. Read more »
End-To-End Stuff: Harry Kane

by Colin McGowan

Harry Kane's relative isolation- his bone-deep nine-ness, if you will- allows him to affect matches in a peculiar way his more dynamic peers don't. He can arrive out of nowhere. Read more »
End-To-End Stuff: Neymar

by Colin McGowan

What's wrong with Neymar? He dives too much, with too much panache. That and a bunch of other stuff that's harder to explain. Read more »
England's Loss While Hearing The Stories In Their Heads

by Colin McGowan

England didn't lose because they're England. But it's remarkable how sharply aware they seemed, as it was happening, that they were badly wasting their shot at a World Cup final. Read more »
Matches Worth Waiting Four Years For

by Colin McGowan

We've gotten nearly all the way through the group stage without many inert stinkers, and that's as it should be. Read more »
Spain Discombobulated On The Eve Of The World Cup

by Colin McGowan

Spain fired Julen Lopetegui and if the players pull this off, it will mean making it up as they go along, playing only for each other and furiously against the myopic suits who have put them in this predicament. Read more »

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