Sports Burst - Zizou In, Valverde Out!

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By Tim Stannard/beIN SPORTS

Barcelona face danger of playing a team who can actually play soccer in Tuesday Villarreal tussle

 

Sports Burst may have gotten itself into an unnecessary tizz about Real Madrid firing Zinedine Zidane and bringing in Jose Mourinho. Call it early season exuberance. Or habit.

A grinding 1-0 victory at Sevilla for Madrid in the Sanchez Pizjuan has released a huge amount of pressure on Zizou and the Madrid team which now sits second in the LaLiga standings, equal on points with Athletic Bilbao.

On the first official day of Fall, it's Barcelona that is the team in CRISIS! although a lot less likely to fire its manager.

A pattern has emerged this season with the Catalan club. When teams immediately raise a white flag at the Camp Nou, Barca have an easy time of it - hello Betis and Valencia.

However, away from home when facing sides with a basic level of competence in soccer, Barcelona have struggled - Athletic Bilbao, Osasuna, Borussia Dortmund and most recently of all, Granada, who inflicted a 2-0 defeat on Barca on Saturday.

Normally, the club would have a week to stew on the loss however Coach Ernesto Valverde - who admits to being angry - now has the chance to either improve the team's worst start to a La Liga season in 25 years. Or make it worse.

Villarreal are in town for a midweek match on Tuesday and could either be stubborn opponents for Barcelona or completely roll over. The Yellow Submarine can go either way.

The local Barcelona press have made their concerns all too clear with 'Sport' and 'Mundo Deportivo' giving a handy seven-point list of why the team are in crisis. "Urgent Reaction!" is the front cover of the former.

Ray Hudson - not a huge fan of Valverde - will be all over this one today in a double dose with Sports Burst at 12PM ET followed by Magisterial! at 7:30PM ET with special guest, former Colorado Rapids and New Zealand coach, Anthony Hudson.

Barcelona v Villarreal is live on beIN SPORTS at 3PM ET on Tuesday with Real Madrid facing Osasuna at home also at 3PM ET.

FIFA The Best: Messi v Ronaldo...v Van Dijk

 

 

 

Soccer has decided that what the world needs now is more bickering on the internet, especially between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi fans.

So Monday is truly delivering with FIFA's The Best awards - not to be confused with the recent UEFA best player awards and the upcoming Ballon d'Or gala in Milan, Italy.

The same trio who say awkwardly next to each other for the UEFA awards - Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Virgil Van Dijk - are all on the short list for Monday's gala that you can catch on the beIN SPORTS USA Youtube channel at 6PM ET. No sign of Luka Modric, this time around.

 

Liverpool's Dutch defender is expected to pick up the prize having lead his team to the 2019 Champions League trophy and been inches from winning the EPL title.

Pep Guardiola, Jurgen Klopp and Mauricio Pochettino are on the shortlist for top coach of the year.

The women's best player prize is also up for grabs with the USWNT duo of Alex Morgan and Megan Rapinoe on the shortlist with England's Lucy Bronze.

Weekend Winners is back in business on beIN SPORTS at 7PM ET as Hope Solo and Jeremy St. Louis look at what could be a tussle between Manchester City and Granada to win this week's top team title.

Antonio Brown vows retirement as Patriots march on

 

While Antonio Brown has vowed through the medium of Twitter to never play in the NFL again, one of his former teams this season, the New England Patriots, stayed 3-0 with a victory over the New York Jets on Sunday. Brown's other team, the Oakland Raiders, lost out to the Minnesota Vikings.

Marc Marquez took a step closer to winning a fourth MotoGP title in a row after Sunday's win in Aragon, Spain. The Spanish rider can wrap up the title in Thailand in a fortnight's time on beIN SPORTS.

In Formula 1, the Singapore GP - a nighttime cage match with fast cars - saw a 1-2 for Ferrari with Sebastian Vettel shaking off some bad form with a victory followed by teammate Charles LeClerc. Lewis Hamilton finished in fourth in a race dominated by pitstop strategies and the safety car rather than overtaking.