Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

UFL Match #2 preview: Global vs. Pasargad

Global vs Pasargad
Has Global grasped Brian Reid system? Can PSG build on their Smart Club campaign?
by rick olivares

Rizal Memorial Football Stadium
The defending champions (Global) open their campaign with every team (perhaps save for Army) arguably better. Global has lost some key players in Demit Omphroy, Juani Guirado and Kevin Capolei but they still have more than enough to win it all again. The departure of Guirado has given the more talented Delon Yao more playing time. He’s like Jerry Barbaso only he plays the left back position – that means stingier defense and another pest who is good in tracking back and picking the ball off slow-footed and less athletic opponents.

Look for Carli de Murga to play a bigger role with Global. Now playing in the middle in a more attacking position, if he can provide scoring from behind Misagh Bahadoran and Izzo El Habbib then he will have filled the glaring vacancy in the secondary when Angel Guirado left.

The key for Global this season is the health of its players and the play of its midfield. The quicker this team adapts to what new coach Brian Reid is attempting with this team (as they also prepare for the AFC President’s Cup) the better it will be for them.

However, Global will be up against a Pasargad team that is flush with confidence after a stellar showing in the PFF Smart National Club Championship where they made it to the title game before losing 1-nil despite missing four starters. It’s a huge accomplishment given they also lost three starters during the off-season.

Despite the loses in personnel, PSG still has exciting weapons with Emmanuel MBata, Hamed Hajimehdi, and talented centerback Reza Amirkhizan. Their engine is driven by Hajimehdi. But PSG will need other players (they might want to dip into the March transfer window) to help out as there is a lack of depth once they hit the bench.

PSG has continued its strong showing from the second half of the last league season by making it to the finals of the Smart tournament. In the longer and protracted war that is the league, this is where we see where this club is really going. The current team is too inconsistent to make a strong case as a contender. I’ve made a case about their composure or too often their lack of it when gauging their chances. Furthermore as previously written, they will need to bring in a little more help in scoring as MBata doesn’t score as much as the now gone Shayan Jafar Dastjerdi or Masood Shahdideh. If PSG can find more scoring options up front look for them to make another late season charge up the standings.

The best way to gauge this Esmail Sedigh-coached club is to see how they stack up against the defending champs.


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