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Opinion

That was the week that was – From St James Park (via the Bernabeu) to Adams Park

2 weeks ago
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We have had an absorbing week of football to digest and are now well into the business end closing stages of the current season.

Last Saturday’s 1-0 home defeat to Liverpool at St James Park, showed how far we have come under Eddie Howe and the new owners, but also how much more we have to do in the following years to hopefully catch this great footballing team.

Onto Sunday and I was disappointed with Chelsea at Goodison Park, thought they were very tame against their former hero Frank Lampard’s Everton.

It is now going to be one of Burnley, Leeds and the scouse mackems who take that final relegation spot.

On Monday, Ronaldo was showing us just why he is one of the best players the world has ever seen, as the Salford Reds put Brentford to the sword at Old Trafford.

Tuesday saw Villarreal overturn a two goal deficit from their first leg defeat to Liverpool at Anfield inside 45 minutes, only to capitulate in the second half.

An unprecedented quadruple is now very much on the cards for Jurgen Klopp and his media darlings.

There was even more drama at the Bernabeu on Wednesday as Manchester City dominated proceedings against a lacklustre Real Madrid and took a 5-3 aggregate advantage with a cracker from Riyad Mahrez.

With the clock ticking down and Real becoming desperate, Pep Guardiola decided to substitute some of his big hitters, with title chasing City’s massive game against the mighty Newcastle United this weekend in mind.

Cue last minute pandemonium as Real scored what looked like being a consolation goal by Rodrygo in the 90th minute, only for them to go straight back upfield again and Rodrygo to score another with a crashing header.

The shock was there for all to see in Pep Guardiola’s body language and he looked like a little boy who’d just had all of his Easter eggs stolen.

Extra-time then ensued and ‘Citeh’ were out on their feet, quickly giving away a penalty that Karim Benzema duly dispatched for what proved to be the winner.

Last night, West Ham lost their Europa League semi-final to Eintracht Frankfurt, but Rangers got another tremendous result at Ibrox, turning a 1-0 deficit from the first leg into a 3-2 aggregate win to reach the final.

Whilst in the League One (Third Division) first leg play-offs, Wycombe Wanderers beat MK Dons who had a man sent off, 2-0 at Adams Park.

So onto the other third tier first leg play-off tonight. Our friends from the Wear entertain Sheffield Wednesday at the Stadium of Light (that name still makes me smile today, as it did back in 1997).

The mackems will be desperate to salvage something after scraping into the play-offs on the last day of the season, but I am hoping more heartache comes their way, with them staying where they are (“5 ina rowa marra…”).

I then might even don the marigolds and go and give Bob Stokoe’s statue a good going over with bleach and soapy water, as a token of apology for this week’s shenanigans.

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