Getting bivouacked after vacation means Monday is slightly quick-and-dirty-versioned this week. But don’t you worry – the suckiness is as potent as ever, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
As always, we start with some matches of happier import. Then, it’s time to get to know some teams about to get the Boot from their leagues.
Atletico MG vs. Internacional – Brazil Serie A
Top six will make the 2019 Copa Libertadores, but only four will get to start at the Group Stage. These two are tied for 5th and 4th, respectively. For a Monday, this is as high-stakes a game as one can reasonably expect.
MG lead the league in offense, but very much at the expenses of their defense. They allow close to twice as many goals per game as their peers. Internacional play a far more closed style, so this will be a battle of pace control.
RESULT: Internacional 0-1 Now even on matches played with the rest of the league, Inter moves up into 3rd.
B. Vitoria de Guimaraes vs. Tondela – Portugal League Cup
This is not the FA Cup, but a different tournament with just a smidge less prestige. Only clubs from the top two leagues play in this one.
This is a Second Round matchup between the 9th and 11th-place teams from last year’s Primeira Liga. This is a Knockout tournament, one match and done per matchup.
RESULT: Tondela 0-2
Cobh Ramblers vs. Dundalk – League of Ireland Cup
Neither is this an FA Cup, though this one involves some youth leagues and other teams outside the country’s top two tier. This is also a knockout format, and in the Semifinals.
Cobh are the only non-Premier club left. They’re a real surprise, as they’re only in 8th in the second division currently. They’ll do well to even stay within a goal of the Premier League leaders.
RESULT: Cobh 1-0 Upset city! On to the final, where they’ll face top flite 5th-place Derry City. D.C. defeated 8th-place Sligo Rovers today, 0-1.
Brann vs. Start – Norway Eliteserien
Look for a shutout here. Brann are #B in the league. Start are tied for second-to-last. This is a battle of the best defense versus the worst offense in the country.
RESULT: Brann 4-1
CD Jaguares vs. Leones – Colombia Premier
Leones only won two games in the 2018 Apertura (first half-season) and are last in the multi-year Relegation table.
Jaguares only finished 14th and have the worst offense in the league. Leones don’t score much more, but only because they take the air out of the ball don’t let the other teams score a great deal, either.
RESULT: CDJ 2-0
Real Potosi vs. The Strongest – Bolivia Premier A
One team from Bolivia gets automatically Relegated. The next-worst has a Playoff with a second-tier team. Right now, that’s where Real Potosi is slotted. They wouldn’t be there if they hadn’t been deducted three points for financial naughtiness. Well, plus they’ve given up a mind-boggling 60 goals in just 18 matches.
The Strongest had the fourth-best record in the Clausura.
RESULT: The Strongest 0-3
Chikhura vs. Kolkheti Poti – Georgia Erovnuli Liga
Only one is auto-Booted from this one, and that’s K.P. If they climb out last, they’d still have to clear two more slots to clear having to survive a Relegation Playoff. They allow far too many goals for much of any movement to be likely though.
Chikhura are in fourth, and for this country they’re a defensive dynamo.
RESULT: Chikhura 3-1
Al Shorta vs. Merreikh Nyala – Sudan Premier
These two are in 7th and 9th place in the Relegation Round of the regular season in Sudan. A whopping four teams get Dropped from the top tier. And since there are just 10 teams in this Group, that makes this a suckitude double feature!
Wait, is that a good thing?
RESULT: Al Shorta 2-0
Power Dynamos vs. Lumwana Radiants – Zambia Premier
In Zambia, they don’t fool around. Five of the top flite’s clubs get Relegated. Lumwana appear to be the best of those worst, but even so they’ve got several points to make up to save themselves.
Power Dynamos will be more than they can handle. They’re 7th in the league, play the best defense outside of the two league powerhouses atop the table.
RESULT: Dynamos 3-0
Varnamo vs. Landskrona – Sweden Superettan
This is Sweden’s second division, and it’s a second double-dip into the depths of a league! Get excited.
Varnamo are in dead last. Scoring just 11 goals in 16 matches will have that effect. Landskrona are three slots above them, good for one of the two Relegation Playoff berths if they can’t climb out. Statistically, they’re actually a pretty average team. Noob looks for them to climb clear of danger.