It’s Globetrotting Friday, Noobites! Full disclosure: Noob positively -adores Fridays!
A primary purpose of the site is to have fun getting to learn about teams, leagues, and which games are important and not from the vantage of the new-ish American fan. But Noob loves Fridays! There just aren’t tons of big games in the Americas and Europe. But scouring the globe for games from countries that aren’t covered by Fox and ESPN and the like is sooooper-fun.
First, a few games to be Tracked via our usual lens:
Morelia vs. Cruz Azul – Liga MX
This is the sixteenth and last game of the Apertura for Cruz Azul. They are in 9th, just one spot out of the Liguilla – league playoff tournament. But they only trail 8th place by goal differential. Morelia’s already in, but will still be invested. They’re in a three-way tie for 5th, playing for seeding. But a win for Atlas, and Cruz Azul will be out of the Liguilla. RESULT: Cruz Azul 1-2
Back to espying minnows! It’s the First Round of the event proper. All one-offs. So enticing.
B. Notts County vs. Bristol Rovers – FA Cup
Notts County could be a hot pick to make some noise, as they’re the #1 team in League Two (fourth tier). Bristol is in League One, and having a painful season. Minnow alert! RESULT: Notts County 4-2
Port Vale vs. Oxford United – FA Cup
Port Vale also hails from League Two, but they’re at the other end of the standings. Oxford is League one, and much more likely to get a road victory. Bring Noob more minnows! RESULT: Port Vale 2-0
Stanford knot. Scythe. Cross. Couple o’ pieces of pottery. Aaaaaaaand a volleyball.
Hyde United vs. Milton Keynes Don – FA Cup
Hyde are the Tigers. They are based in a town of the same name – part of the greater Manchester area with a population around 35,000. And after three straight relegations, they are semi-professional status and playing in the -eighth- tier of the English pyramid. Poor tier-three side MDK should have little trouble. But the same was probably said for some of Hyde’s opponents leading up to this point. Hyde, we hardly knew thee. RESULT: MDK 0-4
Now, let’s really Globetrot! Please keep your tray tables up until the staff comes to feed you, ya’ filthy aminals.
Emelec vs. Delfin – Ecuador Premier
We ease in with a familiar league. Like much of Latin America, the annual season is broken up into two stages. They’re about 2/3 of the way through the second stage. The 1st place finishers from each stage will play for the Title.
That’s unless the same team wins both. Then there’s no game, and the champion is crowned. And just like last stage, these two are in 1st and 2nd place respectively. Partido caliente! Menos caliente. RESULT: 0-0
Paris FC vs. Lorient – French Ligue 2
Lorient finished third-to-last in Ligue 1 last season, then lost to the Ligue 2 third-place team for a chance to remain up. They’re in 4th. Coming in at 5th and from the opposite direction is Paris FC, which played in the third-tier league last season. They didn’t even automatically qualify to move up, but got to when SC Bastia folded. RESULT: 1-1
Renaissance vs. Horoya – Guinea Ligue 1
Alrighty, now we’re talking! Comparative soccer hinterlands, here we come. Noob can’t hardly find anything about the home team. There’s a “Renaisssance FC” in Chad, but guessing that’s coincidence. The season is just starting there. Horoya is the defending champion.
Kitchee vs. Lee Man (Warriors) – Hong Kong Premier
Kitchee won the league last year, and the Bluewaves are in 1st this young season. A few years ago, they drew Arsenal 2-2 in a friendly. Arsenal later donated $780,000 to Kitchee’s youth center and programs. RESULT: Kitchee 4-1
Celebrating an AFC Champions League victory
Al Salmiya vs. Al Jahra – Kuwait Premier
3rd place hosts 2nd in this eight-team league. Salmiya is a city of about a quarter million. Noob wonders about the nickname. It’s possible “terrible troublers” just didn’t translate well from Arabic. RESULT: Al Salmiya 2-1
Al Ansar vs. Safa – Lebanon Premier
It’s a 1st vs 2nd matchup! Noob digs it. Bring glasses for all the Noobites, arak to drink for everyone!
Al Ansar is the historically greatest team in the country. They are from Beirut. Ansar translates to “Helpers”, relating to inhabitants taking in Muhammed and his followers when they were moving from Mecca. Upset! RESULT: Safa 1-3
Arak – come for the pretty bottle, stay (on the floor) for the alcohol content that’s up to 2/3