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Angels Links: Bedlam in London

Fan violence the main story on the first match day of the Europa League.

Arsenal FC v 1. FC Koeln - UEFA Europa League Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Arsenal beat FC Koln 3-1, game overshadowed by pre game violence and antics by Koln fans.

There was chaos in London today, as Arsenal vs Koln produced scenes of unrest and violence not scene since the Russian fan attacks last year during the Euros. This was FC Koln’s first foray into European football since 1992, and 20,000 fans made the trip from Germany to London for the game. Things started out fine, the Koln fans merely singing and chanting their way through London. But closer to gametime things turned ugly, as thousands of Koln fans without tickets tried to storm the gates of the stadium, and clashed with police and Arsenal fans leading to a 60-minute kickoff delay. On the field Arsenal did all the damage and came out 3-1 winners.

Things are tense at Bayern Munich despite 3-0 win in their first Champions League game

Bayern Munich rolled out 3-0 winners against Anderlecht in their first Champions League match of the season. Despite the scoreline things are not all smiles around the Bavarian club. Arjen Robben and Robert Lewandowski have been publicly critical of the club lately, fans were apathetic about the game in the run up to the match, and Franck Ribery threw away his shirt in disgust after being substituted in the game on Tuesday. Alone these could all be dismissed as much to do about nothing. But all together they paint the picture of a club that is mired in turmoil.

Sofia Huerta fighting to make an impression with the USWNT

The USWNT is arguably the toughest women’s team in the world to break into, because of how much talent there is, and how many women in this country play soccer. One player looking to break into the team is Sofia Huerta, forward for the Chicago Red Stars and college teammate of USWNT stalwart Julie Ertz. Graham Hays of ESPN W talks about Huerta’s journey, and her desire to represent the Red, White and Blue.

Could Liverpool’s biggest defensive problem be Jurgen Klopp?

Much has been made about Liverpool’s struggles to defend other teams. As fearsome as their forward line of Roberto Firmino, Mohammed Salah, and Sadio Mane is (expect Philippe Coutinho to break in there too at some point), Liverpool’s defense is ordinary at best. Frequently the Reds are undone at the back, as Dejan Lovren makes far too many mistakes, and Liverpool’s fullbacks can be erratic, as well as their goalkeepers who don’t inspire much confidence from anyone. Nico Morales of the Ringer believes that despite all these concerns, the real defensive issues at Liverpool trace back to the man in charge, Jurgen Klopp.

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